Tuesday, February 14, 2012

The Queen Mine Tour in Bisbee Arizona

Our latest trip was to Tucson, Arizona for a few days at the Tucson Gem and Mineral Show. We decided to split up the gem show days with a day trip southeast to Benson, Tombstone and Bisbee. The highlight of the trip was to be the tour of the Queen Mine in Bisbee. It certainly did not disappoint.

We were up at the crack of dawn, grabbed some breakfast and set out for Bisbee and the Queen Mine. The trip is just under two hours and the drive is nice. The Queen Mine offers five tours per day (9am, 10:30, noon, 2:00 and 3:30). The cost is a reasonable $13 for adults and $5.50 for kids 5-12. Under 5 and it’s free. Reservations are suggested but not required for your tour.

We reserved places in the 10:30am tour and arrived in Bisbee about 9:30. We decided to take the short drive through Bisbee and check out the town. It is nestled in the mile high Mule Mountains and is basically a single winding street with artist shops, museums and Victorian homes.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Taking the train to Machu Picchu via Peru Rail

After spending a couple of days zipping around the Sacred Valley of the Inca it was time to head off to the true highlight of the trip. Machu Picchu. Now you only have a couple of ways to get there. Either you hike the Inca Trail which is an arduous four day trip or you catch the train. There are no public roads to get you there. The final stop is a small town on the raging Urubamba River called Aguas Calientes just a few miles from Machu Picchu.

Peru Rail is the most popular and they offer three train options. The super luxury Hiram Bingham which has on board musicians and wines and foods. The mid-range option is the Vistadome which has large panoramic windows which allow you to take in the wonderful scenery. The low end option is called the Expedition. I took the Vistadome to Aguas Calientes and the Expedition coming back and it was perfect. The Vistadome going allowed me to view the beautiful mountains and all the wonderful sights in the morning. The way back was in the evening. I was pooped from hiking all day and the Expedition saved me about $30 and was perfect.