Hey there Peruvians…Hola Peruvians

I see some of my visitors are from Peru, we are going to go to Lima, Aguas Calientes (Machu Picchu) and Cusco.  Any suggestions?  It looks awesome….and I can’t wait to see the Llamas and Alpacas!

I know there is a lot more then Just Machu Picchu, any ideas would be greatly appreciated.

Veo a algunos de mis visitantes son de Perú , vamos a ir a Lima , Aguas Calientes ( Machu Picchu ) y Cusco . ¿Alguna sugerencia? Se ve impresionante .... y no puedo esperar a ver la llamas y alpacas !

Sé que hay mucho más que sólo Machupicchu , cualquier idea sería muy apreciada

Yes I used a translation on the internet, I do have some HS/College Spanish, but I think it is Mexico Spanish and no Spain Spanish, so we will have to see how it goes!

Travel Clothes….mine worked…..HA

So both my son and hubby made fun of me for buying my items for the trip, but HA on them, mine were easy to clean and dry, so I had nice clean clothes, my son brought a shirt for everyday and since he had his own bag it worked for him.

Hubby however, well lets just say, he was slightly fragrant on the flight home 🙂

Not only did my clothes take up less room, and wash and dry quickly, they are nice enough that I am wearing them after the trip, and they are nice since we are having a slight heat wave. Booyah!

International Travel – souvenirs and gift….what to get how to bring home

Ok this can be a little tricky with kids, as they are going to want “toys”. So go ahead and get them 1 toy but then maybe a Bank or Clock something that can be put out and not lost, or thrown away.

I have found the best souvenirs to be items I will continue to use once I get back home, scarves, gloves, shoes, wallet. Since I don’t wear a lot of jewelry, I stopped buying it around the second trip, because it just sits in my jewelry box collection dust. I use the wallet from Venice everyday, I used the scarf and gloves from Paris when it is cold, I was using the shoes from Rome for work. I purchased a Little change purse in Marrakesh and I wish I would have got more for gifts.

The main thing we do is get pictures from our trips. We found that we can find scenes from where we have been. We do have to take them off the frame or wood they are stretched on to get them in the suitcase, and then we get them reframed when we get home.

You are supporting local artists and you get a very personalized item (we usually get a picture of a specific place that we visited) that can be nicely displayed. They come in water colors, oil paints, pencil sketches, all sorts of things. Here are just a few of ours for example.

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International Travel – packing

I think a lot of how you pack depends on where you live and where you are going. Case in point, we live in CA, hot yes, Humid, no.

We went to Madrid(hot), Marrakesh (hella hot), & Barcelona (Humid AWFUL). It might have been cooler but the humidity was bad!

Now if you are from some of the states that are humid you would probably be ok with this weather, but you could tell those of us who weren’t (americans, europeans) we were all red and sweaty.

But I learned my lesson from Barcelona and was prepared (sort of) for Thailand.

First off, unless you come from a humid city, you ain’t wearing makeup, it just runs off, and you aren’t doing your hair because it will be up in a ponytail the whole time. So on this trip, even though it won’t be humid, it will be hot, very little make, no travel case for me. Will save space and weight, very important with the stupid luggage restrictions.

Second, unless you are backpacking the countryside, I suggest no jeans or if you must 1 pair, they are hot, heavy and hard to wash and dry. If you can either get blended socks or bring enough you can toss the old ones, as they are too hard to wash and they never dry.

I recommend highly light weight and preferably moisture wicking and quick drying shorts, pants and shirts. I found that this items can be expensive, but you know me, I found “Sierra Trading Post” they have very good prices but FIRST join their club so you get 30% off your first purchase of $95.00. Then you get thank you card for %25 of your next purchase of $75.00. I stayed right at my $95 first to make sure I would like the items and they would fit. They are better then expected. Oh and if you have signed up at Ebates like I suggested you will get money back…..BOOYAH.

You will want to pack light and wash your clothes while you are there, if you get the light weight items the wash and dry quickly. Plus they are much lighter and leave room for items you pick up on your trip.

Don’t take more then 2 pairs of shoes, walking shoes and sandals that can do double duty when going out at night.

Trust me, after many trips and bring home items that were never worn but lugged around with us, I know what I am talking about. I think I may have gotten down pat this time.

International Travel – Passports & visa

When traveling out of the country, you need to make sure that your passports have a good six months left on them, or they may not let you board your plane.

Why??? I have no idea, but since we are traveling on x/4 and coming back on x/12 (my son is staying at the house to watch the dogs and cats) and our passports expired x/20 we had to get them renewed ASAP.

If you have plenty of time, you can go to your local post office or library branch that does passports, otherwise you are going to pay a premium to get them processed, but since we can’t travel without them, that is the price you pay (ok we paid) for not checking the passports in January 🙂

When traveling some countries also need visa and a passport. Check each country, we will be getting our Turkish visa’s on line, but we will end up getting our Jordian ones at the airport.

International Travel – go off season if possible

The best time to travel is NOT our summer, the prices are always high, it is crowded and usually bad weather. Unfortunately we are traveling for my husbands 50th bday, so we have no choice this year. And when our kids were younger we were trapped in the “summer school” cycle. We are planning our next trips around Thanksgiving time, since the family is spread out now and Thanksgiving isn’t what it used to be.

So if at all possible, go off peak time, everything is a better price, Plane tickets, hotels, less crowds for the sights, and usually much better weather, trust me is the locals have left their city for the month, that really isn’t the time to be there 🙂

International Traveling…. do it while you are young!

I read “tips” all the time and some of them are plain “stupid or duh”, some are ok, and some help. Here are a few I have discovered over the years. The most important, if you are planning to travel more then once go as young as you can and go as far as you can first.

The older you are the harder the flights are on your body. I wish someone would have told us this 10 years ago!!! We would have saved a bunch of aches and pains!

2004 – Paris, London, Prague
2006 – Tokyo & Bejing
2008 – Amsterdam, Venice, Rome, Paris
2011 – Madrid, Marrakesh, Barcelona
2012 – Thailand & Hong Kong
2014 – Istanbul & Amman (pending)

The flight to Thailand was BRUTAL, but soooo worth it, I love Thailand. The trip to Istanbul is going to be rough. If we were smart we would have done Thailand first when we were ohhh, 8 years younger 🙂 I have a hard time, but I am only 5′ 3/4, my husband is 6′ 2″ and my son is 5′ 10″, it is very rough on them, because lets face it, we are flying coach.