We woke up when we were good and ready at like 6:00 am. We’d agreed upon an 8:00 am breakfast last night, so we had tons of time. After a quick dip in the pool, we showed up early and found the table set with coffee and tea. There was a pitcher of hot water and a small carafe of coffee. We poured the coffee into our cups, but it was nearly solid black. We took a sip and it was tepid. We were all underwhelmed, until Mandy said, “Hey why don’t we pour in the hot water? That’s how Café Americano is made.” D’oh!! After we topped up with hot water and added some cream it was a-m-a-z-i-n-g coffee. They brought out bread, marmalade, and butter, then jugo de papaya, then banana pancakes. All of it was fantastic.
After breakfast, we relaxed a while. But eventually, we met up with Yerson in the courtyard. He’s part of the host family, and he’d agreed to lead us on a short hike from the property. The four host dogs also joined us on our hike. Blanca, Dixie, Yogi, and Buddy (pronounced Boo-dee - we spent a long time trying to figure out how to spell Boo-dee and then realized it was probably supposed to be Buddy.) We left on a trail right next to the pool, and climbed steadily upwards. We saw coffee plants, spicy tomato trees, coca plants, mandarins, limes, and all sorts of vegetables whose names we’ve forgotten. Yerson pointed out to us all sorts of fauna. We hiked along a stream for about 45 minutes to a lovely waterfall. We took some pictures at the top of hike and then made our way back down. By the time we got to the bottom we were all a little sweaty, so we hopped in the pool again to cool off. Shaun and Jenny have a Youtube channel called People Walking Places, and well, since we’re people and we were walking in a place, they made a video of it! It’s not been finished at the time of posting this, but you can check out their channel here for cool videos and, eventually, a video of this exact hike!
After we dried off and changed, we met up with Yerson again. This time, we set off downhill instead. He lead us down the dirt road to the river. We followed along the river for a half mile or so to a little cable car/trolley/zipline thing. Yerson took Mandy across the river first, and then returned to pick up Jenny. Before he set off, he fired off a bunch of instructions in fast Spanish. Shaun and I got the gist of it, kind of. Once they were safely on the opposite side of the river, we hauled the trolley back and hopped in. Shaun and I zipped across the river and Yerson returned to the other side to head back home after giving us directions to continue to the town center. We began the steep ascent up into Santa Teresa proper. At the top of the stairs, we were basically in someone’s backyard. We went around the block and were in the center of town. We wandered around aimlessly a bit until we found a spot we liked to get lunch. Restaurant Las Tres Regiones. We ordered a round of adult beverages and lunch. We all tried Shaun’s pisco sour and loved it, so eventually we each ordered one for ourselves. Pisco is a type of liquor that’s native to Peru. Pisco sour is a mix of pisco, whipped egg white, limes, sugar, and nutmeg. It’s basically like a margarita without any tequila flavor, and more lime flavor. It’s super sour. The limes here are really good.
After lunch, we made our way back to the Hacienda. We got to ride the cable car again! Once at the hacienda we all hopped in the pool to cool off. After we dried off and relaxed for a bit, we went out for another hike with Yerson. This time we climbed up to a little neighborhood above the Hacienda. It’s neat to hike around here because every time you come around a ledge or shoulder of a mountain, you find stuff that you have no idea was there. From the Hacienda, there’s no indication that there’s a whole neighborhood up there, but it’s not far at all. It was a pretty good hike, fairly short. We came back down the opposite side of the hill and around via the dirt road.
Back at the Hacienda, we had some coffees by the pool and relaxed a bit before dinner. Dinner was set for 7:00 pm and we all decided to have lomo saltado. Lomo saltado is a traditional Peruvian dish that’s essentially a beef stir fry with onions and peppers, served with french fries and rice. The sauce is very light, and based on soy sauce. In short – it’s wicked good. We had no idea they love french fries so much in Peru, but we’ve had them with nearly every dish. And they cook them really well here. They’re thick cut, like steak fries. We also got a round of pisco sours with dinner. They were much stronger and more sour here than at the restaurant in town. During dinner, there were several insects flying around the dining area. Yerson had pointed out one of them to us on one of our earlier hikes. He described the insect as similar to a mosquito but bigger, and used his hand to form a claw in demonstration. These insects were now flying around the dining area and were terrifying. We referred to them as pterodactyl mosquitoes. Yerson informed us that they don’t bite, but we didn’t want to find out. It was raining out after dinner, so we decided to get out of the insect room. We all opted to hang out in our room and try to watch some Netflix. The Wi-Fi signal was not quite strong enough, so we decided to watch Dante’s Peak that I had previously downloaded from Netflix as Rob had never seen it. Jenny and I fell asleep early on, so Shaun and Rob watched through to the end and then we all dispersed for some shut-eye.
"It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to."
- Bilbo Baggins
We're just an adventure-loving couple with a puppy looking to share our stories with the world.