David Coveney


All the posts below have been tagged with Travel.

7 March, 2006

Currency exchange when travelling

I’ve often wondered about this – a lot of travellers take out traveller’s cheques or buy currency from their bank in advance. They often then exchange at banks when abroad. As a regular overseas traveller I always felt, but hadn’t really researched properly, that ATM’s and credit card transactions were best – in spite of […]

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27 February, 2006

Oh God

There’s a whole lot to catch up on isn’t there? The jungle, leaving South America, and New York. But you know, I’m feeling kind of lazy at the moment, so I’ll describe things in the way of a five year old. That might make for less typing: The jungle was dead brill!!! There were big […]

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24 February, 2006

Nowt like a failed stereotype to make you think – New York

Funny things stereotypes. They give you expectations. And then you find they often don’t match reality. New York is quiet… almost restful, after the jungle and Lima. There aren’t horns going off everywhere, people are polite and helpful (though they are in Peru also, I just can’t understand them so much) and the traffic isn’t […]

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16 February, 2006


I thought a handy idea would be to carry some samplers of aftershave. Then if I wanted to smell nice I could just use that. Small and light. These samples tend to come in small glass vials. And in a rucksack, small glass vials aren’t so clever. They were safely inside my washbag, but sadly […]

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La Cucaracha!

Sounds kinda sweet in the song. But not when one of the b*stard things turns up on your neck. And talk about big… I’ve seen plenty in France and Spain, but this one looked capable of carrying off a small child. Other wildlife I’ve met today includes a gian ant-eater. Comedy looks and big wet […]

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The Motocarro (tuk-tuk)

Just a couple of days ago I was in Santiago, a city with a gleaming underground system purchased from the French. If you want to get a feel for the Santiago Metro, try travelling on line 1 in Paris. The trains are almost identical. The main difference is that the system is much much cleaner, […]

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In the Amazon Jungle

I’ve just realised, in reading back through the various postings that I’ve missed out on fair chunks of the history of South America that I want to post. But I’m not going to do it here. Stuff like that takes a little more preparation because otherwise you can be exceptionally misleading. But I’m dying to […]

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13 February, 2006

Sanhattan! Capital of Chile

If I’d woken up and been told that, due to a bout of amnesia I’d been flown to Madrid, then I could easily believe that’s where I’d landed. Seriously – Santiago is a smart, modern city with efficient public transport, occassional traffic jams, and lots of foreigners trying to make a buck. It feels like […]

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9 February, 2006


For a panicked moment I thought maybe I’d picked up worms. Perhaps from a cat, dog or llama I’d been playing with. Then I remembered, I’d earlier eaten spaghetti. And I’ve not long had a nasty bout of food poisoning. And it takes a while for the digestive system to work properly after being thoroughly […]

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Another high altitude desert – San Pedro de Atacama

I must like them, because I think this is about my third. No more deserts from now, however. My tan is suitably well developed (at least on exposed skin – need to work on my back now) and I think I now understand what dry empty places are about. The Village of San Pedro de […]

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5 February, 2006

Sick boy – Arica, Lluta Valley, Lauca National Park

So in Arica, looking for something to do, I found the offices of Raices Andinas (or something like that, maybe the other way round – I don’t have my notes on me) and booked myself on a four day expedition of the local national parks. And this was a fascinating trip indeed, although in the […]

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2 February, 2006


These two border towns are found on either side of the Peru/Chile border. Reasonably pleasant, they’re popular for their shopping and in the case of Arica the beach. There’s not a huge else to say about them really and my main reason for coming here has been because they provide the highest density of addresses […]

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30 January, 2006

The other half – Partying in Peru

When you travel you try and do everything on a budget. It’s expensive, after all, to stay in a hotel every night, eat out all the time, and pay for buses and flights. But for the past few days I was invited to the beach house of the family I know in Lima (names preserved […]

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28 January, 2006

Donkeys and Condors

Condors are scavengers – that means they only eat meat of animals that have died and died recently…. Now, in the Colca Valley the condor watching is a huge draw, although in reality the spectacular scenery should be enough for most. So, to keep the tourists coming and to keep them happy it helps if […]

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24 January, 2006

Gin Tonic in Lima Central

It was Douglas Adams that suggested that wherever you are in the universe, asking for something that sounds like “Gin and Tonic” will usually give you the same drink. Of course I’ve only been able to test this theory on Earth, but so far it had proven unbreakable. So in a non touristy town in […]

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Peruvian Food

Peruvian food can be quite easily categorised into the following sections: Salty and meaty. Egg based. Dangerous. Salty and fishy. Scary. Salty and vegetarian. Touristic. Lomo Saltado is one of the classic dishes – fried and salted beef, served in a big pile with gravy, vegetables and chips – all mixed together. There may be […]

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Machu Picchu

This place is the jewel in the South American tourist crown. An abandoned town at the top of a mountain that never got destroyed by the colonials – partly it seems because it just wasn’t all that important and a lot because of its rather inaccesible location. I won’t bore on about the history of […]

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20 January, 2006

Safety when travelling

A lot of travellers worry about being robbed, kidnapped, raped, or jailed for trumped up drugs charges. But they get on a knackered bus, driven by a coca leaf chewing driver for 12hrs at a stretch, along the most dangerous roads in the world, without a second thought. I´m pretty certain more travellers die in […]

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19 January, 2006

On top of t’world!

This is a complete re-write of the original, hurried, posting which failed to cover any detail about the Colca Canyon or Arequipa… or anywhere much that had passed between postings. I hadn’t realised I’d been so scarce with information. Arriving High at Arequipa We took what could only be described as a mobile sauna masquerading […]

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12 January, 2006

Sand surfing in Huacachina

Would have liked to, but the thought of falling in sand and filling every nook and cranny of my body with sand just didn´t appeal! So instead we climbed up to the top of the biggest dune we could see, watched the sunset, and then ran down using these comedy strides of about six feet. […]

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10 January, 2006

The road to Paracas

And now we find ourselves in Paracas – a four hour bus ride from Lima. It’s a tiny fishing village with a lot of restaurants good naturedly touting for business on the promenade, a small beach, a few hostels and a feeling of chaotic charm. It’s clearly poor as hell, but everyone seems happy too. […]

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Del Carajo

At the end of the night a few of us were still ready to party. The reception went from 2pm to 11pm and to be honest… that’s not enough when you have the wind in your sails. Myself and Romana had wondered off from the group to investigate another party in the military base that […]

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