Calling someone “touristy” (and I mean those air quotes) can be a slur these days. Maybe I’m too sensitive about not being Ms. Hardcore DIY, but I’m pretty sure I have detected the derisive tone whenever extreme travelers I’ve met snort about “tours” and “tourists”. So I try not to feel like a lame yuppie when I schedule a tour, because I think the locals might know more than I do about where to go. And some historical context might be nice when looking at rocks on a mountain.
Well, this Sacred Valley tour was a bust. We got that clue when the guide exclaimed that Columbus landed in Peru. Then we realized everyone else on the bus was a little touchy when our guide talked about how cruel the conquistadors were. One old and bloated German dude actually told the guide to, “get over it” when he lamented killing of the Incas. And finally, German Gin Blossom Face bellowed the following to our confused guide: “Maybe their time was up!”
I think our guide starting phoning it in after being mocked. He barely imparted knowledge after that, and we would just amble along in uncomfortable silence. He only took us to shop of tchotchkes, saying that we were helping the Peruvian economy. By that point, I wondered if the non-tour-group type of traveler would have just hiked around the area for days, sniffing the soil and intuiting everything.