El Cóndor Pasa

We listened to Simon & Garfunkel’s version of “El Cóndor Pasa” – originally a Peruvian folk song, which means “The Condor Goes By” – while we were climbing passes higher than 14,000 feet (or 4,000 meters) and visited cities like Cusco and Puno, right at Lake Titicaca. Tomorrow we’ll enter another part of the ancient Inca Empire – Bolivia.


From Puquio to Abancay

As we left the “Panamericana” by the coast, we followed Highway No. 26 across the Andes towards Lake Titicaca and Bolivia. Yesterday we started from a town called Puquio and headed to Abancay, where we stayed for last night. We passed by many amazing views and for the first time we also spotted countless flocks of alpacas.

Walk The Line

It is always hard to say good-bye, but finally we left Lima for good and followed the Pan-American Highway further south. We visited the so-called Nazca Lines near Nazca.

After changing motor oil (fully synthetic 15W-50) and gear fluid (fully synthetic 75W-90) as well as adjusting the valves, we took off in order to travel on across South America.

Our new friend and VW Bug enthusiast, Miguel Angel, escorted us out of the city.

Cops are often not as nice as this one here (see below). Corruption is a common habit.

After leaving Lima, we spent our first night in Ica. We didn’t take a shower for once.

We are both adventurers, but we’re trying to avoid such showers in Latin America.

415 Volt and a lot of water are probably no good combination while getting wet.

Such “boiler showers” are pretty in vogue here in South America.

In the morning we left Ica and got to the ancient geoglyphs of Nazca.

Better known as the Lines of Nazca – a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1994.

The Nazca Lines were created by the Nazca culture between 400 and 650 AD.

Maria Reiche, a German archaeologist studied the Lines of Nazca for decades.

During her field studies she was driving a Volkswagen T1 and a split-window Bug.

The Nazca Desert was Maria Reiche’s life. She spent almost every moment outside.

Maria Reiche also sponsored the tower these pictures were taken from.

In her later years, Maria Reiche had to use a wheelchair and she also lost her sight.

She died of ovarian cancer in 1998 and was buried near Nazca.

The Five Rear Windows

Just before we left Lima today, we had a meeting with two Volkswagen “Brezel” from the early 1950ies. The split windows in the rear made those cars very special. These vintage Beetles also have the original trafficators instead of flashers.

Air-cooled VW Meeting in Lima

Domi was a special guest at the annual Volkswagen meeting of Santa Anita, a district of Lima. Many presents were given and countless photos taken. Many thanks to the District of Santa Anita and its superintendent Leonor Chumbimune Cajahuaringa! And thank you, Miguel Angel Chávez Luna, who invited me to this event!

In the following you’ll find pictures of the cars from all the different clubs, just as “Amigos VW  Perú”, “CAVE”, “Mundo Aircooled Club Perú” (MAC), “VW Club Chinchaycocha”, “VW Club del Perú” and “Kombis y Westfalias del Perú”. The gathering was organized by the local VW Club called “VW SANTAA” and their promotor Mario Leo Diograf.

Lima, Peru

Yesterday we were a little sightseeing in the historic center of Lima. Miguel Angel and his family showed us the hot spots in town. It is so great to know these people! Today Miguel Angel’s mother celebrates her birthday. We want to say: “¡Feliz cumpleaños!”

Peruvian Volks

Yesterday we visited air-cooled Volkswagen enthusiasts from Lima. Miguel Angel Chávez Luna, our host here in the capital, invited us to their weekly meeting. We had a good time chatting about “Escarabajos” and other stuff. Thanks to Miguel we got know these “Volks”!

Welcome to the Desert!

The desert welcomed us while we drove from Trujillo to Lima yesterday. It was long day driving through the Peruvian coastal desert. But we finally reached Lima and our new friend Miguel Angel who introduced us to the air-cooled VW folks in Peru’s capital. On Miguel’s webpage you can find more about his passion for “Escarabajos”.

From Sea to Shining Sea

Yesterday we crossed the Peruvian border at Huaquillas. After leaving the Atlantic in Colombia, we finally reached the Pacific today. So far we made more than 81,000 miles (130,000 kilometers) driving Herbie on five continents since September 2009. We’re staying tonight in Trujillo. Tomorrow we’ll head towards Peru’s capital, Lima.

Final Impressions of Ecuador

We really enjoyed traveling through Ecuador. It is a beautiful country with very nice people. And of course it was great to get to know new friends in its capital, Quito. Herbie bravely followed the Pan-American Highway with all its ups and downs.

Cuenca, Ecuador

The last bigger city in Ecuador we stayed in was Cuenca. The old center is very pretty, but spending a night within the city limits was more complicated than we thought, because we wanted to have a secured parking spot for Herbie, but we couldn’t find a hotel with a parking possibility, so we had to search for a place out of town.

The Long and Winding Road

We spent almost three days in Puyo, but now we are back in Baños de Agua Santa. Tomorrow we’ll finally take off towards Cuenca, following the Pan-Am Highway.

Just right after taking these awesome shots something happened to our Love Bug.

Domi couldn’t shift properly anymore. First he thought it is a broken clutch cable.

But afterwards he had to find out that it was the return spring which was broken.

It was frustrating, because at that time we were in the middle of the “jungle”.

Normally those springs never brake, Domi said. We were obviously the exception.

Domi drove without a clutch all the way to Puyo in the first and second gear.

There we got to a mechanic named Angel, who was so kind to help us out.

Domi removed the engine and we ordered the suitable replacement kit for the spring.

The spare parts were coming from Ambato, so we had to wait. But finally we got them.

We want to thank José from the “Latin Volks” in Quito who ordered the parts we needed and “maestro” Angel from Puyo for his help, his patience and his hospitality!

Baños de Agua Santa

Yesterday we arrived in Baños de Agua Santa, also known as the “Gateway to the Amazon”. The Love Bug took a rest from those unpaved roads within the Cotopaxi National Park. Today we’ll pass Riobamba in order to reach the city Cuenca.


Further On Up The Road

Tomorrow we’ll leave Quito continuing to follow the Pan-American Highway towards Peru. Herbie and we really enjoyed staying in Ecuador’s capital for a little while.

The Love Bug cannot wait to drive further on up the road heading South.

We already got a ton of invitations by VW Bug fans all across South America.

Meanwhile we took a brake from the “Panamericana”, having coca tea among others.

We loved strolling around Quito’s downtown observing the little things in daily life.

Especially the churches are definitely worth visiting. They are all different but beautiful.

The streets are comparatively clean and the city seems to be pretty safe too.

Number 53 is still waiting for departure. Tomorrow we’ll finally hit the road again.

Our next destination is the Cotopaxi National Park, a volcano south of Quito.

Grand Hotel, Quito

While we’re spending time in Ecuador’s capital, Quito, we’re staying at a perfect spot. Our hotel is located directly in the old center and the views from our room at the third floor are stunning. Also the people at the “Grand Hotel” are very, very nice.

A Ride to the Top

The elevation of Quito, Ecuador’s capital, is 9,200 feet (or 2,800 meters), making Quito the second-highest capital in the world, after La Paz, Bolivia. Yesterday’s evening we took a ride together with our air-cooled VW Beetle friends, the “Catso Club” and its “Latin Volks”, to “Virgen de El Panecillo”, the major monument of Quito’s hills. And as we promised this before: “San Francisco de Quito, we love you!”

Quito’s Bug Fans

We got invited to the weekly meeting of Quito’s “Catso Club”. Although it was a rainy Saturday, about thirty Bugs found their way to the gathering. Also a team of a national television station was there and interviewed Domi about our tour. Thanks to José from the “Latin Volks” and Alberto, our host, we got the chance to find new friends!

We miss you, Austin!

Last night we received the sad message that our dear friend Austin passed away.

The first time we met Austin was at a café in Los Angeles in 2010. From our first conversation on, a deep friendship developed since then. Although Austin had to go through countless difficulties in life, he was always caring, sensitive and had a strong will to live. Austin remains as one of the most inspiring persons of our lives.

Ain’t No Road Too Long

Herbie is following with us the Pan-American Highway through Colombia. It is amazing to watch all the different landscapes. Yesterday we passed Medellin and tomorrow we’ll get very close to the border of Ecuador. There ain’t no road too long for Herbie!

Share Herbie’s World Tour!

Below every topic you can find a button to share our story with your social network such as Facebook and Twitter. It just takes one click to share Herbie’s World Tour!

Although we don’t have social networks like these, we welcome you to share our ride on “34 Horses Around The Globe” with your friends.

The Panamericana

The Pan-American Highway or rather “Panamericana” is the longest drivable road on earth, measuring about 29,800 miles (or 47,960 kilometers) in its total length.

We have already driven its roads within the USA, Mexico and all Central American countries. Now we are cruising the South American section of the “Panamericana”.

Colombia’s Pan-American Highway is getting more and more scenic as we’re heading further South. And we are yet very excited to explore Colombia’s Andes.

Herbie’s Back on Track!

We finally left Cartagena of the Indies heading southwards. Herbie’s doing well again. Everything is working! He enjoys following the great Pan-American Highway.

Yesterday we were driving along Highway No. 90 and 25 towards Medellin.

We spent the night at a motel just outside of of a bigger town called Sincelejo.

Today we’ll be heading further South towards Medellin. In just a couple days we’ll cross the border to Ecuador – a country which Domi already visited in the year 2004.

Hit the Road, Herbie!

We got it done! After “wasting” eleven days in Cartagena because of a huge electrical problem caused by one of the jacks on the ship, Herbie is back on the road again!

Domi had to take out several parts within the engine bay a third but very last time today. He installed the new generator, regulator and electronic ignition.

On February 8, we came to Colombia. First we had to wait for Herbie’s vessel which was more than two weeks delayed. Later on we spent eleven more days for the repairs.

On the port we got introduced to “the best automotive electrician in Cartagena”, they said. He’ll get us back on the road on the very same day, they promised.

Finally it took him eleven to locate, repair and exchange the broken parts, even though Domi did most of the work by removing the old parts and installing the new ones.

Everyday we had to go through countless difficulties, but by the sweat of our brows we coped with all of them. And finally we got him back. Herbie lives and can move on.

At this point we want to say thank all of you for your moral support and helpful advises. And special thanks to our dear friends Friedrich, Andreas and Florian from Europe!

Now we’re hoping that Herbie’s ocean carrier will make amends for what he and we were going through. They should pay at least for all the repairs and expenses. We’ll let you know if the shipping company was willing to compensate for our loss.