A few weeks ago, on a Friday morning Sofía and I set out on our way to Quillabamba. Quillabamba is a small town located in the south of Peru. It is the capital of La Convención Province, which is the largest province of Cusco. It is located in an area called the higher jungle.
There are several options for getting there; we chose to travel by car. Therefore, we went to the Almudena bus station in Cusco, where several drivers offer to take you to Quillabamba. It was a relatively comfortable journey and it took us four and a half hour to get there.
Upon arrival we immediately noticed the immense difference in temperature. The heat already becomes difficult to bear early in the morning but it is nice to spend a couple days in the warmth.
Quillabamba sees little tourism and the town does not have many attractions, but there are some exceptional natural water attractions in and around. The first day we visited Sanbaray, a complex of swimming pools, bars and restaurants located 10 minutes by motor-taxi from the city center.
On day 2 we decided to search for waterfalls outside of Quillabamba. It turned out to be a little adventure. We took a taxi off the beaten path and after about 30 minutes we arrived at a little lodge where we met a nice family who were also the owners. From here we walked up for 1 and a half hour to find the waterfall. The hike was a bit tougher than expected since the path was very small and it had some obstacles along the way (e.g. a snake on the middle of the path). But we made it and found the waterfall. Once we arrived at the waterfall we relaxed for a while. The water was very cold so we did not swim. It was nice to sit and just appreciate nature. Then we made our way back. Upon arrival at the little lodge the family prepared a delicious lunch of trout and yuca.
On our last day in Quillabamba we wanted to enjoy the sun for as long as possible before returning to ´chilly´ Cusco. Therefore, we went to the Piscina Municipal. This pool is definitely worth the visit. The view from the pool is stunning and it is not as crowded as Sanbaray. It is located only a 10 min walk from the city center. After relaxing at the pool we had lunch at Restaurant Don Felix located a couple streets from the Plaza de Armas. Here you can eat a menu for only 12 soles including; ceviche, soup, main dish, desert and unlimited drink. The staff was super friendly and the food was amazing. After lunch, we chose to travel back to Cusco by mini-van. This time it took us 6 hours to get back to Cusco but it was not an uncomfortable journey and it is a cheaper way of travelling. The views along the way were incredible. It was like travelling through the clouds.
We had a great time and will definitely return to enjoy the sun and nature!
By Stéphanie Gruijters