Paradise found in Bolivia

We left Argentina by plane, since the long and bumpy bus ride into Bolivia did not appeal to the troops. We arrived in the economic capital of Bolivia: Santa Cruz. It’s a large, modern city, but there’s not much to see or do there. Mostly, it is used as a base for exploring the surrounding countryside, including places like Samaipata, a small corner of paradise located in the mountains, 2 1/2 hours by car from the city.

Samaipata is a very tranquil little place, and a very laid back bohemian atmosphere pervades the streets. It is situated at the junction between four different ecosystems: amazonian jungle, highlands, fields, and forest. Located on a nearby sandstone outcrop lies the pre-Inca site of El Fuerte. We booked a couple of nights mid-week in the poshest resort in town, located on a hilltop with a splendid view of the surroundings, and we had a lovely time exploring the region.

Samaipata viewed from our resort – El Pueblito
Entrance to the El Pueblito Resort

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The Lord of the Rings in New Zealand

New Zealand has been on our itinerary since the very beginning. Gregory, being a huge Tolkien fan, really wanted to come and see where The Hobbit series was filmed. Given that we had ample cast members, friends who had come half way around the world to visit us (the best kind of friends!), we could not resist the temptation to film our own adaptation of the Lord of the Rings down under. And so, it gives us pleasure to present to you some of the magnificent landscapes we visited in: The Lord of the Rings in New Zealand.