Story and photos by Rob Squire
While I’ve traveled quite a bit over the years, I haven’t spent very much time in South America other than a two-week trip to the Patagonia region of Argentina back in 2017. A couple of years later, I decided to visit Peru, a country that stirs up mental images of Machu Picchu and women dressed in colorful garb.
Monkeys are always fun, and one two-year-old Woolly monkey named Sam took a liking to me. At first, he just hugged my ankle, but in no time at all, he climbed up my pant leg and planted himself on my shoulders where he stayed for most of my visit.These guys were simply unbelievably cute and made wonderful subjects for my camera as this Howler Monkey did. Most of the rest of my stay on the Amazon was spent doing my best to avoid being consumed by the primary local man-eating predator – mosquitoes.
Wherever I visit, I love making my way through local markets. They’re a cacophony of sights, sounds – and sometimes smells. I think a person can learn a lot about the local culture and the people that live there just by spending a little time in one. You find slabs of meat and organs from various animals hanging from hooks, along with fruits, vegetables, prepared foods and just about anything else that you can name.
This woman was just sitting in a narrow hallway waiting for a customer for her herbs. After receiving her permission and paying her a few sols (the unit of currency in Peru), I had to back up into an adjacent hallway to get far enough from her to get this shot.
Of course, the thing that just about every visitor wants to see while in Peru is Machu Picchu.
There is one place along the path which is the exact spot where every tourist stands to take a shot of the view, and if you’re like me, you’ve probably seen no fewer than 10 zillion pictures that all look the same.
Of course I took one, but I also kept looking for a slightly different perspective of it. No matter where you shoot it from, it’s a magnificent sight!
This country has so much to offer with such a variety of experiences that most any traveler will find something to enjoy. I was happy that I visited, and I have no doubt that if you decide to go, you will as well.
Photo tip: Quite often when a person takes a picture of something, they are disappointed in the shot later on. It turns out to just be an uninteresting picture of – a thing. Many shots, especially landscapes, are enhanced by having a foreground, a midground and a background. When I was leaving the monastery in Urubamba, I saw this lime green house with a beautiful backdrop of the Urubamba Mountains, which are a part of the central Andes. In the photo below, I used an opening in a broken down section of the monastery’s old original stone fence for a foreground, with the colorful house as the midground and the mountains as the background. Try it some time.
Rob Squire is a professional travel photographer who has visited over forty countries. When not traveling the world, he is based in Denver, Colorado. You can see his work by visiting RobSquirePhotography.com or by “liking” his Facebook page.
You’ll find other stories, photos and photo tips from Rob Squire here.