Your trip to South America can be just as fascinating as the trips taken by young, meandering backpackers, who have the time and interest to wander around and discover unconventional destinations. Machu Picchu move over! Ever heard of Aramu Muru? Probably not. I doubt if many young backpackers have heard of this place either.
It’s located about 35 km from Puno, on the edge of Lake Titicaca nestled near farms. It’s ancient and is located in a geographical area craving to be discovered but delightfully, it’s not! There are no markers or signs or evidence of the spiritual magnitude of this place. It’s a “portal” carved out of a big sheet of stone in Hayu Marka. It’s supposed to be a doorway to another world. It doesn’t have the magestic views that Machu Picchu has, but it has lots of spirit! When you get to your hotel in Puno, ask them to find you a local guide. It will take about half a day to visit.
On the way to Aramu Muru, make sure you stop at the Inca Uyo, fertility temple. The temple is full of (there is no delicate way to say it) stone phallus sculptures. Lots of them, and one giant one in the middle, which is notched at the top. It aligns with the sun on New Year’s Day, June 21. If a woman needed a little help conceiving, she could sit on it! Which brings up my next subject. Peruvian pottery.
Haven’t you heard about exotic Peruvian pottery? Famously adorned with men & women engaged in creative embraces that would bring a blush to the cheeks of our most outgoing American lover boy, Hugh Hefner! There’s a lot of things we North Americans don’t know about the vivacious Incan culture. If you’d like to learn more, check out your local museum. In Norfolk, the Chrysler Museum has Peruvian exhibitions including pottery, (not the sexy kind), mummy mask and photos.
On my first trip to Peru, the students caught me off guard. All the markets and many shops have souvenirs of the lusty pottery. High school students will zero in and find that stuff. Words of advice to parents and educators traveling with kids; make sure your “facts of life” speeches are up to date.
Back to the travel spots. In Lima, there is the famous Larco Museum and the Catacombs and even the ruins of Pachacamac. But not many people know about the Balconies of Lima, located in the historical center. Built in 1700’s & 1800’s, businesses and organizations have “adopted” a balcony and many have been restored.
When you get ready to plan your trip to the ruins of Machu Picchu, be sure to ask about visiting other fascinating and unusual places. Some are mystical, some are sensual and others might make you blush.