Month 8 in South America: By The Numbers

Happy March, y’all! With the conclusion of February, that wraps up 7 months from start to finish in South America. I started this trip at the very end of July, making today the beginning of my 8th month in South America.

I was meant to be out exploring today but those super-active Barilochenos are having their Iron Man race today so the main roads have been shut until later this evening. That leaves me with very little to do today. So little, in fact, that I’ve started doing my taxes. I hate taxes, but I love numbers, so I figured why not take a break from taxes but keep the whole numbers thing going? Eight months is the longest consecutive time I’ve spent traveling in one continent, so I’m also just as interested in seeing the numbers behind this trip, so far.

Let’s get started with some of the basics before moving on to some of the more fascinating statistics.

Eli’s Bangin’ South American Expedition

Start Date: July 31, 2019

Current Date: March 1st, 2020

Starting Point: Quito, Ecuador

Currently In: Bariloche, Argentina

Countries Visited: Ecuador, Peru (x2), Bolivia, Chile, Argentina

Time Spent in Each Country:

  • Ecuador: 42 days (July 31 – September 10)
  • Peru: 91 days (September 10 – December 10)
  • Bolivia: 30 days (December 10, 2019 – January 9, 2020)
  • Peru: 28 days (January 9 – February 6)
  • Chile: 6 days (February 6 – February 11)
  • Argentina: 20 days (February 11 – March 1)

Distance between Quito and Bariloche: 6,313 kilometers (3,922 miles)

Actual distance traveled: 17,192 kilometers (10,682 miles)

  • Ecuador (1,989 kilometers total)
    • Quito to Quilotoa: 158 km
    • Quilotoa to Baños: 171 km
    • Baños to Montañita: 480 km
    • Montañita to Puerto Lopez: 90 km (roundtrip)
    • Montañita to Manta: 300 km (roundtrip)
    • Montañita to Guayaquil: 186 km
    • Guayaquil to Cuenca: 199 km
    • Cuenca to Loja: 215 km
    • Loja to Vilcabamba: 39 km
    • Vilcabamba to La Balza: 151 km
  • Peru (4,258 kilometers total)
    • La Balza to Jaen (Border Crossing): 156 km
    • Jaen to Chachapoyas: 194 km
    • Chachapoyas to Cajamarca: 330km
    • Cajamarca to Trujillo/Huanchaco: 292 km
    • Trujillo/Huanchaco to Huaraz: 322 km
    • Huaraz to Huayhuash: 444 km (roundtrip)
    • Huaraz to Lima: 402 km
    • Lima to Paracas: 259 km
    • Paracas to Huacachina: 75 km
    • Huacachina to Arequipa: 715 km
    • Arequipa to Puno: 297 km
    • Puno to Cusco: 772 km (roundtrip)
  • Bolivia (2,678 kilometers total)
    • Puno to Copacabana (Border Crossing): 142 km
    • Copacabana to La Paz: 154 km
    • La Paz to Sucre: 1384 km (roundtrip)
    • La Paz to Rurrenabaque: 844 km (roundtrip flight)
    • La Paz to Copacabana: 154 km
  • Peru (2,236 kilometers total)
    • Copacabana to Puno: 142 km
    • Puno to Cusco: 386 km
    • Cusco and Sacred Valley Loop: 320 km
    • Cusco to Ayacucho: 579 km
    • Ayacucho to Millpu roundtrip: 242 km
    • Ayacucho to Lima: 567 km
  • Chile (1,947 kilometers total)
    • Lima to Calama (flight): 1,846 km
    • Calama to San Pedro de Atacama: 101 km
  • Argentina (4,184 kilometers total)
    • San Pedro de Atacama to Salta (Border Crossing): 601 km
    • Salta to Cafayate: 394 km (roundtrip)
    • Salta to Cordoba: 870 km
    • Cordoba to Buenos Aires: 691 km
    • Buenos Aires to Bariloche (flight): 1,628 km

Travel Destination Stats

Highest Altitudes Reached

cordillera huayhuash trek in rainy season

Days Spent In Cities With Populations Of…

  • 1,000,000+: 30
  • 250,000 – 1,000,000: 60
  • 50,000 – 250,000: 42
  • 10,000 – 50,000: 17
  • <10,000 population: 33
  • in the wilderness: 13

Surprising, because I always though I preferred smaller, quieter towns to the big cities. But apparently I’ve spent nearly 2/3rds of my trip staying in bigger towns. Long stays in big cities with small-town feels like Cuenca, Cusco, Huaraz, and Sucre definitely inflate those numbers a bit.

Days Spent In…

  • big mountain towns: 84
  • small mountain towns: 23
  • the coast: 34
  • the desert: 7
  • the jungle: 9
  • big cities: 36

Average Daily Steps Per Month

  • August: 16,619 steps
  • September: 14,771 steps
  • October: 20,325 steps
  • November: 15,409 steps
  • December: 15,617 steps
  • January: 15,555 steps
  • February: 16,343 steps

Longest Travel Buddies:

  • Melvin, Germany: 9 weeks
  • Amy C, Australia: 6 weeks
  • Amy E, Australia: 5 weeks
  • Julia & Myrthe, Netherlands: 4 weeks
  • Simon, France: 4 weeks

Oldest Travel Buddy: Dave from Alaska, 65+ years old

Transportation

Buses Taken:

  • Overnight Buses: 10
  • Day Buses: 17
  • Missed Buses: 1

Flights Taken: 4

Times Hitchhiked: 8

  • Ecuador: 7 times
  • Peru: 1 time

ecuador peru border crossing

Accommodation

Nights Spent In Hostels: 195 nights at 39 different hostels

  • 175 in shared accommodation
  • 8 in private rooms booked
  • 12 in private rooms by fortune

Nights Spent In Hotels: 7

  • Manta, Ecuador: 3 nights
  • Jaen, Peru: 1 night
  • Ayacucho, Peru: 2 nights
  • Urubamba, Peru: 1 night

Nights Spent Camping: 12

  • Santa Cruz Trek: 3 nights
  • Cordillera Huayhuash: 7 nights
  • Rurrenabaque Jungle: 2 nights

guide to cordillera huayhuash trek guide peru

Nights Spent On Overnight Buses: 10

Nights With Complimentary Accommodation (In Exchange For Work): 67

  • Ecuador
    • Community Hostel, Quito: 5 nights
    • Black Sheep Inn, Quilotoa: 3 nights
    • Hotel Poseidon, Manta: 3 nights
    • Alternative Hostel, Cuenca: 7 nights
  • Peru
    • ATMA Yoga and Hostel, Huanchaco: 5 nights
    • Selina, Huaraz: 15 nights
    • Kokopelli, Lima: 2 nights
    • Kokopelli, Cusco: 7 nights
    • Wolf Totem Nomad, Pisac: 6 nights
  • Bolivia
    • Wild Rover, La Paz: 3 nights
  • Argentina
    • Aldea Hostel, Cordoba: 6 nights
    • Gravity Eco Hostel, Bariloche: 5 nights

Cheapest Hostel: 12 Soles ($3.50) Campo Base in Huaraz, Peru

Most Expensive Hostel: $35, Black Sheep Inn, Chugchilan, Ecuador (all-inclusive)

Most Nights Spent At One Hostel: 21, Selina Huaraz, Peru

Most Stays At Different Hostels In One City: 4, Cusco, Peru

Party Stats

Most Consecutive Nights Out:

Longest Stretch Without Going Out:

  • 14 days: Cuenca, Vilcabamba, Chachapoyas, Cajamarca
  • 13 days: San Pedro de Atacama, Salta, Cordoba

Favorite Party Spots:

  • Poco Loco, Montañita – 5 times
  • El Tambo, Huaraz – 5 times
  • Bisarro, Lima – 4 times
  • Lost Beach Club, Montañita – 4 times
  • Mythology, Cusco – 4 times

Blackouts: 4

Girls Kissed: 13

Dudes Kissed (no homo): 2

Dogs I’ve Petted: the limit does not exist

Random Stuff That I’ve Kept Track Of

Most Oreos Eaten in One Day: 48

Most Empanadas Eaten in One Sitting: 8

Most Expensive Meals:

  • $23 USD, Bariloche, Argentina
    • 1 kg of steak with mashed potatoes and a liter of beer
  • $22 USD, Lima, Peru ( x2)
    • All you can eat sushi + one Coke
  • $14 USD, Sucre, Bolivia
    • Steak, an appetizer, and a cocktail

Times I’ve Eaten at McDonald’s: 21 (mostly for ice cream cones)

Favorite Restaurants:

  • Green Point, Cusco: 11 times
  • Bienmesabe, Sucre: 9 times
  • Kebab Guy, Montañita: 7 times
  • McDonald’s, Cordoba: 6 times
  • Omphalos, Arequipa: 5 times

Socks Lost: 7

Pan Flutes Gifted To Me For Christmas: 1

To be updated…

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8 thoughts on “Month 8 in South America: By The Numbers

  1. Hello Eli.

    I love your statistics! I have kept in my life statistics about different things. For example, I calculate daily how much I have walked. In one day, I walk more or less 5 km. In one week, it makes 7*5 = 35.
    In a month, it makes 4*35 = 140. In one year, it makes 12*35 = 1680. In ten years, it makes 10*1680 = 16800. In 40 years, makes 4*16800 =67200. I calculated only 40 years, although I am older. This means that I have walked around the world 1.68 times, when knowing that the earth’s circumference is about 40000 km.

    I checked your About-page and did found that you visited Denmark, Norway and Sweden, but you did not visit my country Finland! Why? Maybe you did not have any idea about my country and thought that it is not worth for a visit.

    Here is my about-me-page telling with photos about my life and my country:

    About me

    Happy and safe travels!

  2. Whoa! 48 oreos in a day? I’d be sick lol. Also kudos to you for surviving 6 consecutive nights out. I’d still be recovering haha. Such a great break down of your travels!

  3. WOW what a wonderful experience, I cannot wait to see where else you are going. I am Colombian, so hopefully you visit the country and let me know your thoughts

  4. Woah! What a great way to break down and look at your experience! You are definitely doing South America justice! Particularly appreciate the food stats and number of dogs pet <3

  5. I have followed your journey in the last 8 months and what a wonderful trip if has been from your accurate information to your sharing of your experience to all the amazing photos I have seen of South America!

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