(04/04/2012)We’d like to introduce you to our latest team member Californian Christine. Christine first visited South America 15 years ago on an archaeological dig, and a year ago made the big move to South America: first to Cuenca, Ecuador, and more recently to Peru.
Christine hails originally from California but has spent many years living and studying in Chicago. She has a Masters in Art History and Archaeology from the University of Chicago as well as a Masters in Business Administration from Northwestern University. Christine now lives in Peru, with her husband – oh and we have to tell you… shes an excellent cook!
We asked Christine some questions about her experiences in South America:
1. What was your first experience of South America?
During college, I studied archaeology. At first I was studying Greek antiquities, but I signed up to help with one of my professor's archaeology project in Peru. I was fortunate to travel all over the country visiting many archaeological sites and museums from Puno to Sipán. I ended up changing my study focus to pre-Columbian archaeology and returning for a second project. Since then, I've been back several times including trips to Argentina, Uruguay and Chile with my husband and a graduate school trip Sao Paolo, Buenos Aires and Santiago.
2. You´ve recently visited The Galapagos Islands - what do you think makes the place so special?
No one ever comes back from the Galapagos and says, "you know, it was okay." The trip definitely lived up to the hype. It's a special, unique place. I'm not a huge wild life or bird watcher, but even for a distinctly non expert like me, it was incredible. I think snorkeling with sea lions and sea turtles was the major highlight for me.
3.Where do you live now and what is there for visitors?
I live in Huanchaco, a small beach town located very close to Trujillo in the north of Peru. Northern Peru is often overlooked by tourists to Peru, and this is really too bad. The area offers many charming seaside towns with incredible seafood and world class surfing. The area also has some amazing archaeological sites, a particular interest of mine. The region was home to several cultures that built large cities before the Inca empire existed. Very close to my home is the pre-Columbian city of Chan Chan, the world's largest adobe city. A few hours north is the site of the Lord of Sipán, one of the greatest archaeological finds in the last fifty years. Like King Tut's tomb in Egypt, this tomb was discovered undisturbed and full of incomparable artistic treasures in intricate gold work, ceramics and costumes. For those who have made the long trip down to see Machu Picchu, it is well worth the extra detour north to see these additional archaeological wonders.
4. Where would you like to visit in South America?
It's so funny - somehow the more I see in South America, the longer my list of places to see grows! But top of that list has to be Patagonia. I would love to take a cruise around the glaciers and visit the national parks. I also need to spend some more time in Brazil. I've been there twice, but it is a big country and I feel like I've only scratched the surface.