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Travel Pictures - PERU - 1995

All images Ron Miller

     Peru was the ideal country to conclude my travels in South America because it seemed to embody the continent's cultural diversity as well as its turbulent history. Contained within Peru's borders are Incan ruins, elegant colonial cities, impoverished Indian communities, and wealthy suburbs where residents are living the "American Dream." After visiting the Puno area on the shores of Lake Titicaca, I traveled to Cuzco where I took in the usual sites including Machu Pichu. More than anything else, the incredible stonework of the Incas made the greatest impression upon me.

A traditional reed boat as observed from one of the manmade floating islands of the Uros People -
near Puno, Peru
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A busy market on one of the floating islands. The floating islands are constructed of thick mats of totora reeds,
and the sensation as you move about is something akin to walking on an extra-firm waterbed -
near Puno, Peru
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The sun is VERY intense at this altitude, but not as bright as the red color on this outfit -
near Puno, Peru
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Not only the ground under their feet but even their homes are constructed of reeds -
near Puno, Peru
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Although this school building is constructed of reeds, the desks and chairs are fabricated from good old fashioned wood -
near Puno, Peru
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Uniformed girls heading home from school. The invading Spanish conquistadors decimated the former Incan city of Cuzco
and constructed in its place an impressive colonial city complete with monuments, cathedrals, and plazas -
Cuzco, Peru
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These mystifying stone walls are the only remnants from the pre-Colonial city of Cuzco. This amazing construction has
actually survived earthquakes nearly undamaged while the newer Colonial constructions were destroyed -
Cuzco, Peru
Not until visiting Cuzco could I have envisioned that something as simple as a wall could be so bewildering. The stonework consists
of large irregular-shaped rocks that seem to fit together with laser precision. Scientists aren't sure how these Incan walls were
constructed although one theory proposes that the Incas cut the rocks using concentrated light from large curved mirrors in a
manner similar to using a magnifying glass to burn a hole through paper. That theory is more perplexing than the walls themselves!
Cuzco, Peru
High above the city of Cuzco are the ruins of Sacsayhuaman, a fortress constructed around 1100 AD -
Cuzco, Peru
The largest stones at Sacsayhuaman are estimated to weigh nearly 200 tons - and they fit together like pieces of a puzzle! -
Cuzco, Peru
Everyone uses the phrase "sexy woman" to remember the Incan name for the ruins of Sacsayhuaman -
Cuzco, Peru
This is one tourist attraction that meets all expectations -
Machu Pichu, Peru
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Even the llamas seem to appreciate the stunning vista -
Machu Pichu, Peru
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The climb to the pinnacle of Huena Pichu is like sightseeing on the wing of an airplane -
Machu Pichu, Peru
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The symmetry and flow of the tourist road adds to the magic of Machu Pichu - NOT! The bright "star" on
the fourth switchback from the top is the reflection from the windshield of a bus -
Machu Pichu, Peru
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 The terracing was essential for growing crops in the steep terrain. The pinnacle of Huena Pichu rises in the background -
Machu Pichu, Peru
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 Carved by aliens? -
Machu Pichu, Peru
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 These hilltop ruins and terracing are located near the town of Ollantaytambo -
Urubamba Valley, Peru
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Here I am negotiating to purchase some essentials - chocolate cookies! -
Urubamba Valley; Pisac, Peru
The heart of Lima shines with majestic government buildings and tidy plazas. Limas desert climate is modified by
the cold waters of the Pacific, which gives the city pleasant temperatures year-round. However, the kink
in this paradise is the persistent fog that often blankets the coastal region -
Cathedral of Lima; Lima, Peru
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While central Lima is clean and tidy with elegant colonial buildings, the city's outskirts consist of unsightly urban
neighborhoods that look like active war zones with torched automobiles and burning piles of garbage.
Here, a young vendor manages to eke out an existence amid the graffiti -
Lima, Peru
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All images Ron Miller
For authorized use of these photos, please contact Ron Miller at TheHappyCannibal@gmail.com