Since leaving Brazil at the end of October, we travelled through four countries in ten days – Brazil, Argentina, Chile and Colombia. It was quite busy! In the last week we updated our journals and so here is what Betsy, Willow and I have written.
Iguazu Falls – from Lola’s journal
After landing in Iguazu, we were greeted by Ariel and Florencia who would be showing us around the next day. Ariel is the son of Betsy’s friend Jodie’s nanny in Richmond. We really really well looked after by them.
To get to our hotel we had to drive into Argentina, as we had landed in the Brazilian side. At our hotel, we jumped in the pool just before dinner (which was not the greatest idea as we got very wet). Before we headed to dinner, we went to an ice bar… An Ice bar in Iguazu!!?! It was very cold in there and they were blasting out music. Betsy and Willow were dancing but I was taking advantage of the free drinks 🙂 We had about half an hour in there and it was really fun but definitely the right amount of time, as it was starting to get very cold. Here is a video of Betsy and Willow crazily dancing to the music…
The next morning we were picked up by a van and The Keens were in there! (The friends we made in Trancoso). We were very happy to see them again. With everyone ready, we headed to the entrance of Iguazu national park.
In the park we started a small hike to see the top of the waterfalls. We had to walk along a long bridge to get there but in the end it was definitely worth it. Before we could even see it we were getting wet by the wind pushing the spray from the waterfall towards us. We started to see people walking back and they were very wet! At the end of the bridge we saw the view. The view I’d only seen pictures of but now was real!
It was the best view of a waterfall I’d ever seen by far!!!!!!! The water was crashing down to where we couldn’t see any more: all the different colours were unbelievable. Half of the water was a bright, snowy white, whereas the others were browny, coffee-like colours. Every now and then, big spirts of water would come up and get us quite wet. I asked Ariel if we would get any wetter and he said that was nothing compared to the next hike: down to the bottom.
On the way down there were lots of little trickles of water plunging to the bottom, which we could now see. We could also see an island in the middle of the waterfalls and speedboats going around them doing tours. At the bottom we got to stand right underneath the waterfall! I was getting sooooooo wet. It was like being in a very powerful shower.
After getting drenched, we started our hike back up again but it started to rain! A tropical storm had started with thunder, lightning and lots of rain. There was no point in trying to stay dry as we were already wet so we just quickened our pace. At the top, we were standing under a small shelter outside the shop. We waited for about 20 minutes for the rain to stop then headed for the cafe as we had to wait for the driver. I ordered a hot chocolate to warm me up. We also got changed out of our soaking wet clothes, which felt so good as we were warm and dry. Finally the driver arrived and we had to say goodbye to the Keens but luckily we are seeing them in Buenos Aries for Halloween which we are all looking forward to.
During our last night in Iguazu, there was a massive storm at night with lots of rain and wind, which kept me awake for hours. It was very annoying as we had to get up early in the morning to catch a flight and I was very tired. When we arrived at the airport, it looked like a school, which was very unusual, but it was a small place so it didn’t need a big airport.
Next stop: Buenos Aries!
Buenos Aires – from Willow’s journal
When we got to Buenos Aires we went to a steak restaurant and guess what we all had? STEAK!!! And they were massive! Mummy ordered thin and Daddy ordered thick, but Mummy had a really thick steak and daddy had a really thin steak.
The next day was H A L L O W E E N!!! During the day we went to a famous cemetery called ‘Recoleta Cemetery’. It was very spooky and there were people who were buried in the ground – I would normally say ‘in the ground’ but they were in a coffin above the ground… Dun, Dun Dun!!!
We looked all over Buenos Aires and finally found a shop with Halloween stuff. We bought three masks. I had a clown – Pennywise, Daddy had a scary man and Lola had a vampire. We went to a restaurant with our friends The Keens and on the way there we scared lots of people and we saw Stars Wars and Snow White and we gave them some sweets. We scared the bus driver and the people in the restaurant and an old lady screeeeamed!!!! It was really fun because no one celebrates Halloween in Argentina and I thought it would not be fun at all but actually it was better than fun, it was amazing!!!
The next day we went to a book shop, which used to be a big Theatre. Mummy said my Grandad would really like it.
After that we got in a taxi and drove to La Boca. There were some houses that were really colourful. There was an art gallery where we watched lots of videos and it was a bit like a museum. Then we had lunch on top. I had a cheese toasty and it was really delicious. Also the people sitting next to us were English.
San Pedro de Atacama – from Betsy’s journal
When we got to San Pedro de Atacama in Chile, it was quite late, so we had to quickly have dinner and go to bed. On Friday, we got picked up to go on a tour and we went to Rainbow Valley. In Rainbow Valley there were tons of different coloured mini-mountains. The colours were green, purple, blue, red and many others. Some of the rocks are 45 – 50 million years old. My favourite colour on the rocks was the violetish-blueish colour.
On the same tour, we went to a dry waterfall, which was a narrow gorge. If you were claustrophobic, you would not want to go there. We also went to see some 3000-year-old paintings. There was a painting that was carved into the rock and on the floor, under another rock, was the same painting. There were lots of different paintings including a llama giving birth, a fox, a monkey and a feather man.
The same day we had another tour with some other people and do you know we had the same van on both tours. On the second tour, we went to Cejar Lagoon, which is a lagoon with soooo much salt in that you float without any equipment that helps you float. The only annoying thing was that it was the coldest water you’ve ever been! I didn’t go in for long because I was too cold.
After that we went to another lagoon and took some funny photos of Willow holding me and Lola. We weren’t allowed to swim in this one, as it was saltier so the salt was in big sharp blocks and they started to cut people’s skin. Now it is forbidden to go in that lagoon.
Next we went to a place where we could see only one flamingo, but it was so far away the cameras couldn’t see it. We watched the sunset there and it was not only a sunset it was a sunset and a moonrise! What that means is that when the sun had set, we turned around and the moon was rising. That was the first time I have seen the moon and the sun at the same time.
On Saturday we had another tour, which was by far my favourite. We first went to a cliff/mountain sort of thing and the guide asked ‘who wants the best picture’ so of course we said yes. Little did we know, the best picture was at the edge of the cliff. We did it but Daddy had to go on the edge because Mummy was scared.
Then we had a big walk to these massive sand dunes. They were so big that they were about 350 meters high. The best bit about the sand dunes was that we all got to run down them. It was so fun, Lola and I fell over…well I fell over and tripped Lola up (hehehe!) After that we went to watch the sunset on a narrow cliff. Dad, Willow and I went but it was quite high and steep so Mummy didn’t want to because she thought she wouldn’t be able to come down again.
I thought San Pedro de Atacama was great and the tours were amazing and very educational. We made a little video which shows us floating in the lagoon and running down the sand dunes. The song that we have put on the video is ‘Learn to Let Go’ by Ider. Mummy’s friend’s daughter Meg is in Ider, with her friend. I like their music. We heard this song when we were shopping in H&M in Santiago, Chile! It was quite surprising because they are not massively famous yet. We told them that we heard their song and they were excited.