Cajamarca, Perú, land of cheese and other natural wonders.
Only had a grand total of about 72 hours here, but loved every minute of it.
People were incredibly friendly, there were amazing views of the city, wonderful traditional clothing (including cowboy-style hats only worn by women, who are dwarfed by their size), and heaps of good day-trips. Although there were lots of tourists, it didn't really feel like it because they're all Peruvian. My first day trip went to a dairy farm and cheese factory and then to the ruins of Ventanillas de Otuzco. They're small funerary niches carved into the face of an enormous rock wall, which were used to hold the bones of members of the higher social classes.
The next day I went to Baños del Inca, which are partly natural, partly constructed thermal baths- so relaxing! The rest of my day was a trip to Cumbe Mayo, which our tour guide kept calling “formaciones caprichosas,” and I didn't know what caprichoso meant, nor could anyone explain the word to me, haha. Anyway, it's a natural rock formation, that also has pre-Inca constructed water-systems and petroglyphs.
And as if things couldn't get any better, I ran into Paco & Katie, Méxican/American friends I worked with on Village Farm, in Belize! So glad to run into each other and the perfect surprise before heading to Bolivia...