CA, Ontario: Boiling times or How to Make Maple Syrup

While I was trying to social distance myself earlier this month, I have visited our country side of the province. In these rough times, when the whole world is boiling in tension (due to COVID-19), rural people in Ontario are still following their traditions to harvest and boil their own sap, in order to make maple syrup.

Harvesting maple sap

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CA, Ontario: Photo essay – Hilton Falls in February

The winter in Canada lasts between 3 and 5 months, in general. In most of the country, the winter is marked by snow, ice, blizzards, and winds. Lots of winds. But when the sun shines, everybody is out. So we were these past amazing few weekends, as we’ve been so fortunate to have in February, in Southern Ontario.

Hilton Falls - Sun playing peekaboo

The region of Halton is about 1 hours Northwest of Toronto and has a big variety of parks one can enjoy in the winter, not only in the summer, or other seasons. We I decided to go to Hilton Falls, as I am in love with frozen falls. I will let you decide if I am right or not.

Hilton Falls

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MX, Quintana Roo: The fortified city of Tulum

Important seaport for trade on Caribbean Sea, Tulum is known to have flourished in the 13th century. Facing the Eastern side of Yucatan peninsula, Tulum still stands up with its fortified walls and mysterious history witness through so many years. One of the last cities built and occupied by Mayan, Tulum ruins is the most visited site in the state of Quintana Roo, Mexico.

Beach, sun and sea
Beach, sun and sea – a perfect place to spend a birthday

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PE, Cusco: Beaten paths, yet to be discovered – wandering through the city

How to Peru in 2 weeks – Day #9: Museo de Arte Precolombino  – Twelve angled stone – Museo Kusicancha – Qurikancha Temple – Sacsayhuaman Fortress

 

At a high altitude of 3400 metres, Cusco is located at the west end of Huatanay Valley. Well protected by the surrounding mountains, the conquistadores destroyed the Inca buildings, and used the strong foundations for their colonial structures. But the solid streets and pathways remain unchanged, legacy of a strong civilization. Had they cars, maybe they would have built them wider, but they will remain in the same state for many years from now, even in this century when the city expanded so much, and the traffic in many areas looks impossible. The cobbled streets will stay famous for generations to come, and even though the Spanish maybe wished to destroy a culture, they couldn’t destroy the roots of it.

Cusco - view from plaza

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PE, Sacred Valley: Machu Picchu, the last frontier

How to Peru in 2 weeks, Day#7: Machu Picchu – Aquas Calientes

I’ve always wondered why these names got stuck in my head since my elementary school. Like Machu Picchu, Titicaca, Popocatépetl, or Vesuvius. Maybe for the way my geography teacher pronounced them, or the way they resonated in my brain? They dwelt in my head for years, feeding my imagination and desire to see what is outside of my little box, making me dream of this beautiful world. And one day, the dream became true..

Machu Picchu - after the sun came out

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PE, Sacred Valley: A day trip to Maras, Moray, and Chinchero

How to Peru in 2 weeks, Day#5: A day trip to Maras, Moray, and Chinchero

Dragging a foot after the other one is not a problem, if I can only get a grasp of air. My heart is racing like crazy, trying to pump more air. Thin air. I can’t believe how quickly my heart rate went up after not more than 20 stairs. I suddenly realize what our driver told us in his broken English about an hour ago. Chinchero is our highest point of the day, over 3700 metres altitude. Like a miracle, a bench appeared in front of our eyes, but we still have to climb few more stairs. I only have to keep moving, a step at a time: four, three, two, one. I almost collapse on the bench, trying to stabilize my heart rate: breath in, breath out, breath in, breath out.. Continue reading

CA, Ontario: Autumnal postcards – John Earle Chase Memorial Park

September thoughts are lingering more than the month itself. Who needs to go to St. Moritz or Vermont to see autumnal landscapes, when they are right here, around the corner?

Freedom

I have never thought to have a whole park for myself, but certainly this is not a park marked on the Google map yet, but a hidden gem since 1995. Hmm, maybe the park hasn’t had a proper sign since 1995, but anyway, Google, where are you? I’m sure that people would love to know about this park!

John Earle Chase Memorial Park-the trail map on the left, Google map on the right

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PE, Lima: Miraflores & Barranco districts and other impressions

How to Peru in 2 weeks, Day #3 – Miraflores and Barranco districts

The third morning in Lima was sneaking quietly, and we had to decide if we should visit some museums we had on our list, or get to Puente de los Suspiros (Bridge of Sights) in Barranco, while seeing more of the Lima’s street life.

The first stop was in Kennedy Park, so famous for its inhabitants: 60 cats. Located in the heart of Miraflores, the park is well known to the tourists, even though it looked like there were more locals at the time we stopped by. A little oasis in the middle of a bustling city, the park is much smaller than I imagined. Welcomed by a huge Pucara Bull, we had a chance to learn about this symbol, not knowing yet we will actually have a chance to visit the town of Pucara in the following week.

Kennedy park - Pucara bull
Lima-Kennedy park – Pucara bull, the symbol of prosperity, happiness and fertility in Andean culture

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