Welcome to Traveller’s Tales!

Every month I feature a new vacation review from a traveller just like you.  These are honest, unbiased reviews of actual vacations taken by ordinary people. This month, check out Justine’s intrepid discovery of western South America.

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HOME BASE: Auckland, NZ

TRAVEL STYLE:  Backpacker / Independent

FAVOURITE DESTINATION:  Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador

Travel Itinerary

Dec 2016 – About a month in Peru, one week in Bolivia and a month in Ecuador

Airline Review – Latam / Lan Chile

They were great! Good food, comfy seats, lots of movies and lovely staff.

LOCAL WOMEN – RAINBOW MOUNTAIN, PERU    (image credit: Justine)

Trip Highlights & Must-Do’s


Hiking the Inca trail to Machu Picchu is a top choice – it makes the view at Machu Picchu even more spectacular.


The Galapagos Islands are incredible – you don’t need to do a spendy cruise as there are day trips, freebies and cheap food. And if you do want a cruise, book last minute deals from mainland Ecuador.


Rainbow Mountain, located just out of Cusco and a recent addition to the tourist circuit – it’s a bit of a hike (15km round trip at up to 5,200!!) but the views are phenomenal.

BIRDS ON BALLESTAS ISLAND, PERU   (image credit: Justine)
CRAB – GALAPAGOS ISLANDS   (image credit: Justine)

Favourite Foodie Adventure:

Whole grilled fish at the food alley in Puerto Ayora (Galapagos) – the food was great but the whole experience was even better.

HIKING RAINBOW MOUNTAIN   (image credit: Justine)

Top Travel Tips:

In Peru, look to use Peru Hop as your transport option. It’s an easy, friendly, hop-on, hop-off bus service with freebies and a guide but not a guided tour. You meet lots of people but have the freedom to pick and choose what you do and when.

Leave things flexible – there are plenty of transport and accommodation options and it’s all fairly easy.

Learn a bit of Spanish, and last, but not least….always carry toilet paper 🙂

DUNE BUGGY – HUACACHINA, PERU   (image credit: Justine)



International Airport


Public Transport


Language & Communication


Accessing Money


Traveller Safety / Security


Internet Access

COLCA CANYON, PERU   (image credit: Justine)

There’s always more to do – give yourself plenty of time!

Products We Love

Ecuador & the Galapagos Islands travel guide - Cuenca & the Southern Highlands (2.392Mb), 10th Edition Aug 2015 by Lonely Planet

Peru travel guide - Northern Highlands (1.469Mb), 9th Edition Apr 2016 by Lonely Planet


Thanks Justine for the fantastic feedback!

Have you been travelling lately and want to share your experiences (good or bad)?  Drop me a line or comment below for your chance to be featured in this blog series.



(all with Latam Airlines & subsidiaries)

  • Auckland to Lima (via Santiago)
  • La Paz to Guayaquil (via Lima)
  • Guayaquil to Galapagos Island
  • Galapagos Island to Quito
  • Quito to Lima
  • Lima to Auckland (via Santiago)



Justine travelled through South America independently.

However, if you prefer the security of a tour group, you can do a similar trip with Intrepid Travel on their 30-day Peru & Galapagos Explorer tour, which runs year round.  Or I can put together a custom tour package to fit your dream itinerary, budget and time.

To book this trip as a complete package email me your names and preferred dates of travel.  For more information on what you need to book your dream holiday check out this article.



Anita | Burgess Travellers

Anita Burgess is in the business of making memorable family moments. Soccer mum, travel broker & writer, she’s happiest with a camera in her hand and the sand between her toes. Find insider travel tips and inspiration for your memorable moments on her blog, Burgess Travellers, or get in touch if you’re ready to make your holiday happen.


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