Helen and Paul World Tour 2005/06 travel blog

Helen chills out in our cabins hammocks - hard life

View from our cabin on the mountainside

Ready for a face and head massage - bring it on!

The pool - this place was a little paradise

Helen in the steam treatment box

This was more like torture than health treatments!

Paul gets blasted with ice cold water to cool down after the...

The clay got everywhere!

Sweet Jesus!

Evening meals are served on the terrace

Our room - mozzie net definitely required!

Inside the health spa

Our daily jacuzzi

Vilcabamba is a tourist magnet because the life expectancy of the people living here is supposed to be considerably higher than anywhere else so it is dubbed 'the village of eternal youth'. The title was given when international investigators unearthed a string of people claiming to be up to 130 years old! More rigorous studies have revealed that these claims are wildly exaggerated and there has never been any real evidence of abnormally long living, although the oldies are fitter and healthier (not as fit as Nanna Yeaman!) We think the people claiming to be 130 years old just didn't have a clue of the calendar nor could they count!

Despite not being a true village of longevity, gringos, including us, come here to get away from the smog in the cities and to chill out for a while, as life in the village is pretty simple. The weather is always spring-like everyday of the year as well. We decided to indulge in health spa treatments to ease our tired muscles from carrying our backpacks and walking a lot, as we don't have a car to nip to the shops in.

Our days spent at the Mountain Health Spa where tough, it was just non-stop!

Non-stop lazing around and being pampered that is.

We were staying at Madre Tierra Heath Spa were for $20 each we were fed organic food and drink, had use of the pool and Jacuzzi. Our room was one with a view (with posh toiletries included, not usually included in hostels that we've stayed in) but we had to clamber up many step to get to it.

Madre Tierra were offering six spa treatments for $45 so that's what we opted to do and headed to the spa after our organic breakfast.

Our first treatment was a head massage which was nice and relaxing after which we were locked into a steam cabinet with only our heads sticking out. The therapist did a runner and left us in there! It was far too hot so we tried kicking the door open to the cabinet but it had been locked - was this really being pampered or a form of torture? She did return to let us out and flannel us down before putting us back in again, after a while we were let out again and asked to dive into a plunge pool, then back into the steamer yet again before finally being hosed down with a very powerful spray of water.

Our next treatment was a full body salt rub; this was probably the best of all the treatments.

Next was a clay bath were you cover yourself with clay so there are no white bits of skin showing and then let it dry, although it was far more fun to throw balls of clay at each other than let it dry.

A facial and foot massage followed our clay bath. We were exhausted after all that effort we could barely lift our forks to our mouths during our 3 course organic dinner.

The following day we had a full body massage but the masseuse was a little rough so rather than it being relaxing and drifting off to sleep we were twisted and contorted until our muscles pleaded for no more.

They also offered colonic irrigations, did we dare do it..........

We tried relaxing our muscles afterwards in the Jacuzzi where we were joined by two loons from California. They were therapists of their own kind in America earning a living by painting and playing music of a person's aura? Crazy! Needless to say we avoided having to sit with them at dinnertime.

We left the next day before the spa owner could take us on a search for UFO's. Was everyone at the spa a lunatic? Maybe that's why we were there???

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