Friday, 18 September 2015

Need more reasons to come and volunteer at Seeds?? Here they are!

There are a hundred and one reasons to come and volunteer with us at Seeds of Hope. Not only do you get to hang out (and help out!) with the greatest kids in Peru, but the money you spend to volunteer here and the work that you do goes such a long way in changing the lives of these children.

But, that’s not all! One thing (among many) that makes this project so special is where it’s based. Huaraz is a spectacular place surrounded by one of the most striking mountains ranges on earth. And what does that mean? Well, it means there are quite literally “mountains upon mountains” of things to do (pun intended!).

As the school is only open during the week, this gives our volunteers free weekends to spend as they wish. And there are a ton of tour agencies all over the place that will happily take you wherever you hope to go.

However, one fantastic benefit to being at Seeds means you have the opportunity to meet Grimaldo, one of our student teachers. Grimaldo was once a student at Seeds of Hope before graduating a few years ago. He has now just finished studying tourism here and is currently training to be a tour guide.

One thing we continue to do here is to help our graduates after they finish their time at Seeds and go onto further education and beyond. Grimaldo is one of a group of recent graduates who help at the school. We give them this option in order to keep them in steady employment while they work towards their career goals. Something we are trying to help Grima with right now is to start his own business here in Huaraz once he is a licensed guide. He has taken our volunteers out on various excursions for a discount price compared to the normal, often inflated prices, at the agencies. This not only benefits our volunteers, but it is benefiting Grimaldo and helping him for the future. No one knows the mountains quite like this guy!


There is a vast list of incredible trips to do and we would like to have our volunteers going out on these adventures with him as much as possible! If there is anyone out there who has some experience working within the tourism industry also and would like to offer some help in any way, we are always looking for volunteers to help with projects such as this! Please do get in touch!

From epic treks and camping opportunities, to day hikes or pre-Incan ruins, there is a whole rocky world out there to choose from. I thought I would let you know of a few to give you an idea of how magical this place really is (in pictures!)

Laguna 69

This is a great place to start your trekking adventures. It is easily the most popular trek in the Huascaran National Park and considered the gem of the Cordillera’s that every trekker is looking to do. The piercing blue of the lake will be enough to take your breath away!






Churup

This is arguably as awesome as Laguna 69, although the trek is far more exhilarating and certainly a different kind of challenge (this involves a little more actual 'climbing' as well as trekking). This is another day hike which is only an hour away from Huaraz.






El Mirador

This is the view point over looking the entire city and on a sunny day it really is spectacular. You can see the mountains flanking Huaraz and it’s also a great spot to just go and simply hang out with friends. You can get there in just under and hour and many volunteers head up there during their break from school.



Pastaruri Glacier

This stunning glacier lies around 3 hours from Huaraz and is an incredible sight to see. Sadly, due to global warming, experts say it wont be around in 6-8 years. You’d better come and see it quickly!



Paron

Laguna Paron is a wonderful day trip. This vast stretch of water is simply beautiful and the trek itself takes you the expanse of the lake. At the end you can see above the incredible Paramount mountain from the movies as well!




Llanganuco and Yungay

Llanganuco is another fabulous lake just inside the Huascaran National Park. You can either see this on your way to Laguna 69, or you can take an excellent day trip with many companies that includes also stopping in the lost city of Yungay. This city suffered a terrible tragedy during the 1970 earthquake and was entirely destroyed. There are still remnants of the city left behind, and it also holds the best view of the Huascaran (tallest mountain in Peru).





Santa Cruz Trek

This 3-5 day trek has to be one of the most popular in probably the whole of South America, let alone the Huaraz area. It is probably the best few days I’ve spent here, the views are indescribable! The trek itself has both tough and fairly easy going parts, but none of it is too strenuous. I’ll let the photos do the talking for me!







Quilcayhuanca Valley Trek

This is another great trek to also fit in some camping. It can be done in 2-3 days and is also absolutely beautiful. It’s definitely a lot tougher than Santa Cruz as it has some steeper climbs. But it starts only and hour from Huaraz and is a great option if you only have a weekend to spare.






Laguna Shallap

This past weekend, Yuri, the volunteers and I took some of our Secundario students camping. We went to Laguna Shallap, not too far from the city, but the walk itself is wonderful. We stayed in a small refuge half falling apart and stayed right next to the lake. This is a great place to go with either the kids or with a group of volunteers!









I hope this helps you to picture this spectacular place at least a little! There’s so much more to choose from, this place is teeming with excellent things to do.

If you’d be interested in coming to volunteer with us, please get in touch either on our website at or email us at seedsofhoperu@hotmail.com!

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