Jaza's World Trip


Bicycle window shopping

For those of you that haven't yet heard, I think it's time to announce it officially: next week, I plan to travel down to Sicily, and to go around the entire island on a bicycle! However, I have no bike here in Italy at the moment — so to prepare for the Great Sicilian Ride, I need to do some shopping. Today, for my first rainy day in Rome, I began window shopping around, and looking at what's on offer. I'm hoping to find something second-hand, nice and cheap, but good and durable enough to last me for my journey. And it seems that Rome is a promising place, if it's a decent second-hand bike that you're after.

Filed in: RomeWanderingShoppingCycling

San Telmo market

It was a bit of a slow start to the day, today being Sunday, and last night having been such a big one. But eventually, Oly and I managed to haul ourselves out of our hostel, and off for some afternoon lunch and some exploration of the city. We ended up in San Telmo: the quaint and quirky artists' area of BA, and home of a sprawling Sunday market. San Telmo's my favourite neighbourhood, out of everywhere I've seen so far in BA: both the buildings and the people are filled with character; there are great places to eat and to shop; and it almost feels like being in, say, Montmarte in Paris. Was also a good, not-too-demanding place to hang out and to wear off the effects of last night.

Filed in: Buenos AiresShoppingMarketsChilledQuaint

New camera in Santiago

Santiago is hardly the ideal place in Latin America to buy yourself a new camera. But for the past 40 hours or so — since my camera got nicked in Quito — I've had no camera. And if you just continue straight on in your travels, without getting yourself a new camera: well, then the robbers have really won, haven't they? Because there's nothing more precious than the memories of a great trip. And so, despite the unfavourable buyer's market in this part of South America, I went out and got myself a new toy this afternoon.

Filed in: SantiagoTechnologyRipoffShoppingFor sale

Otavalo market splurge

I woke up this morning, to find Otavalo completely transformed. Outside my hostel was a market. Down the street was more market. In fact, the entire town had been converted into one giant, sprawling, souvenir-riddled market! So the rumours were true: it is indeed a big deal, here in Otavalo on Saturday. And since this was my last full day in Ecuador, and in the Central Andes as a whole, it was time to embark on a serious splurge of souvenir and present shopping. I now have a very overstuffed bag, and a rather lean pocket.

Filed in: OtavaloChessShoppingBig eventsMarketsFor sale

Santa Cruz, here we come

After doing some research today — on the Internet, and face-to-face with various other travellers — I've decided that for my time here in Huaraz, I'm going to do the Santa Cruz-Llanganuco hike, and I'm going to do it alone. In order to prepare for this 5-day trek in the Cordillera Blanca (that's the mountain range that it passes through), this afternoon I hired all the gear that I'm going to need, and I bought all the food that I'm going to eat. This being Huaraz — the trekking and mountain-climbing capital of South America — getting all that stuff proved to be no problem at all.

Filed in: HuarazShoppingEquipmentHiking

El Molino

Most tourists who come to Cusco do their shopping at only a few central places, such as Gato's Market, Mercado Central, Mercado San Pedro (for the slightly more adventurous), and the shops in or near the Plaza De Armas. But if you stay in Cusco for a while, the locals will soon inform you that the only real place to shop is at El Molino. It's not in Lonely Planet (not in mine, at least — ostensibly too far away and too dangerous). It's not near the city centre. But it has everything you could possibly need, from shoes to DVDs, and from seafood to sunglasses. And all at rock-bottom prices. El Molino is the black market of Cusco.

Filed in: CuscoCheap livingNaughtyShoppingMarkets

Booking all day long

Cusco is a city where you can book anything you want; and today, I had a fair bit of stuff to book. In fact, I did so much shopping around and booking today, that it took up most of my first day in Cusco. I booked a river rafting trip for tomorrow. I booked a month of Spanish lessons and homestay. And I confirmed my booking for the Salkantay hike next week.

Filed in: CuscoMoneyShoppingCheap living

Stocking up for Pesach

So far in my travels, I haven't really done the whole buy-groceries-and-eat-frugal thing. It's been cheap as it is, eating at restaurants and at hot-food street stalls. But with Pesach coming, I decided that I have to stock up on some unleavened supplies to keep me going for the next week. So this morning, I popped into a supermarket in Miraflores, and did some basic shopping.

Filed in: LimaCheap livingShopping