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Category: Herbie’s World Tour

Red Rock Argentina

Red Rock Argentina

As we were heading north on Highway No. 68 from Cafayate to Salta, we passed a truly amazing area full of red rocks. This region is also well-known for its unique wine production, benefiting from the low-humidity mild weather. We stopped for the night in General Güemes, a city east of Salta. Today we’re going to travel further up northeast towards Paraguay.

Cruising across Catamarca

Cruising across Catamarca

We spent the night in Fiambalá, after crossing the Argentinian border via “El Paso de San Francisco”. On the next day we cruised across Catamarca, one of Argentina’s provinces. Remote and vast landscapes accompanied us on our way southeast.

Herbie’s Dakar Rally

Herbie’s Dakar Rally

The Love Bug made it! The border between Chile and Argentina levels 15,505 feet (or 4,726 meters) and its way up there is called “El Paso de San Francisco” – the toughest section of the world famous Dakar Rally. Paved roads were hard to find and the weather was windy as well as freezing cold. Oxygen was quite rare and Zainab even got a bit of an euphoria. Here are our last impressions of Chile. It took us hours to…

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The Atacama Desert

The Atacama Desert

Herbie is driving through the driest area on the earth – the Atacama Desert in Chile. We’re heading further south besides the Pacific ocean. Right after we’ll leave the “Panamericana”, climbing the Andes a very last time.

The Republic of Chile

The Republic of Chile

After meeting the President of Bolivia, we finally entered Chile at Colchane and headed downhill towards the Pacific. We are now following the coast line further south, before we’ll cross over to Argentina.

Till the End of Roads

Till the End of Roads

Herbie made it to the end of the road in Bolivia. According to our maps and the natives we’ve spoken to, the street towards the border should be totally paved and in perfect condition, but we got surprised! We had to drive parts of it on an unpaved path for hours until we reached the Bolivian border town Pisiga on Highway No. 12.

Leaving Oruro in Bolivia

Leaving Oruro in Bolivia

After spending three nights in Oruro, in the South of La Paz, we’re going to leave this town for good, heading towards Chile. Tomorrow we’ll probably cross its border. We had a good time in Oruro, taking a rest from rallying across the Peruvian Andes. We stayed at an old hotel right in the center. And Herbie parked in the courtyard. It was also time for a small motor service, after driving so many miles since California. Domi changed spark…

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¡Bienvenidos a Bolivia!

¡Bienvenidos a Bolivia!

We spent our last Peruvian night in a small town named Juli and entered Bolivia right besides Lake Titicaca. Bolivia is obviously different: Here you get two different gas prices, one for the natives and one for foreigners like us. The so-called “international price” is three times higher. Meanwhile we filled up Herbie already two times. Domi had long discussions at the pump, but finally succeeded – we got treated like “Bolivianos”. Back in Europe we read some good things…

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El Cóndor Pasa

El Cóndor Pasa

We listened to Simon & Garfunkel’s version of El Cóndor Pasa – originally a Peruvian folk song, which means “The Condor Goes By” – while we were climbing passes higher than 14,000 feet (or 4,000 meters) and visited cities like Cusco and Puno, right at Lake Titicaca. Tomorrow we’ll enter another part of the ancient Inca Empire – Bolivia.

From Puquio to Abancay

From Puquio to Abancay

As we left the “Panamericana” by the coast, we followed Highway No. 26 across the Andes towards Lake Titicaca and Bolivia. Yesterday we started from a town called Puquio and headed to Abancay, where we stayed for last night. We passed by many amazing views and for the first time we also spotted countless flocks of alpacas.

Walk The Line

Walk The Line

It is always hard to say good-bye, but finally we left Lima for good and followed the Pan-American Highway further south. We visited the so-called Nazca Lines near Nazca. After changing motor oil (fully synthetic 15W-50) and gear fluid (fully synthetic 75W-90) as well as adjusting the valves, we took off in order to travel on across South America. Our new friend and VW Bug enthusiast, Miguel Angel, escorted us out of the city. Cops are often not as nice…

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The Five Rear Windows

The Five Rear Windows

Just before we left Lima today, we had a meeting with two Volkswagen “Brezel” from the early 1950ies. The split windows in the rear made those cars very special. These vintage Beetles also have the original trafficators instead of flashers.

Aircooled VW Meeting in Lima, Peru

Aircooled VW Meeting in Lima, Peru

Domi was a special guest at the annual Volkswagen meeting of Santa Anita, a district of Lima. Many presents were given and countless photos taken. Many thanks to the District of Santa Anita and its superintendent Leonor Chumbimune Cajahuaringa! And thank you, Miguel Angel Chávez Luna, who invited me to this event! In the following you’ll find pictures of the cars from all the different clubs, just as “Amigos VW Perú”, “CAVE”, “Mundo Aircooled Club Perú” (MAC), “VW Club Chinchaycocha”,…

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Peruvian Volks

Peruvian Volks

Yesterday we visited air-cooled Volkswagen enthusiasts from Lima. Miguel Angel, our host here in Peru’s capital, invited us to their weekly club meeting. We had a good time chatting about “Escarabajos” and other stuff. Thanks to Miguel we got know these “Volks”!

Welcome to the Desert!

Welcome to the Desert!

The desert welcomed us while we drove from Trujillo to Lima yesterday. It was long day driving through the Peruvian coastal desert. But we finally reached Lima and our new friend Miguel Angel who introduced us to the aircooled VW folks in Peru’s capital. On Miguel’s webpage you can find more about his passion for “Escarabajos”.

Sea of Heartbreak

Sea of Heartbreak

Yesterday we crossed the Peruvian border at Huaquillas. After leaving the Atlantic in Colombia, we finally reached the Pacific today. So far we made more than 81,000 miles (130,000 kilometers) driving Herbie on five continents since September 2009. We’re staying tonight in Trujillo. Tomorrow we’ll head towards Peru’s capital, Lima.

Final Impressions of Ecuador

Final Impressions of Ecuador

We really enjoyed traveling through Ecuador. It is a beautiful country with very nice people. And of course it was great to get to know new friends in its capital, Quito. Herbie bravely followed the Pan-American Highway with all its ups and downs.

The Long and Winding Road

The Long and Winding Road

We spent almost three days in Puyo, but now we are back in Baños de Agua Santa. Tomorrow we’ll finally take off towards Cuenca, following the Pan-Am Highway. Just right after taking these awesome shots something happened to our Love Bug. Domi couldn’t shift properly anymore. First he thought it is a broken clutch cable. But afterwards he had to find out that it was the return spring which was broken. It was frustrating, because at that time we were…

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The Volcano Cotopaxi

The Volcano Cotopaxi

The Cotopaxi is Ecuador’s most famous volcano and with 19,347 feet (5,897 meters) the second-highest summit, after his bigger brother Chimborazo (20,565 ft. or 6,268 m), which is the farthest summit from the earth’s center. However it was the perfect time to have a little photo shoot with Herbie at Cotopaxi National Park. After making pretty rough roads across the entire National Park of the Cotopaxi we ended up in Baños de Agua Santa, where we’re staying for the night…

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A Ride to the Top

A Ride to the Top

The elevation of Quito, Ecuador’s capital, is 9,200 feet (or 2,800 meters), making Quito the second-highest capital in the world, after La Paz, Bolivia. Yesterday’s evening we took a ride together with our air-cooled VW Beetle friends, the “Catso Club” and its “Latin Volks”, to “Virgen de El Panecillo”, the major monument of Quito’s hills. And as we promised this before: “San Francisco de Quito, we love you!”

Quito’s Bug Fans

Quito’s Bug Fans

We got invited to the weekly meeting of Quito’s “Catso Club”. Although it was a rainy Saturday, about thirty Bugs found their way to the gathering. Also a team of a national television station was there and interviewed Domi about our tour. Thanks to José from the “Latin Volks” and Alberto, our host, we got the chance to find new friends!

In 80,000 Miles Around The World

In 80,000 Miles Around The World

We’ve now driven already more than 80,000 miles (or almost 129,000 kilometers) around the globe. Today we just arrived in Ecuador and also its capital Quito. We spent exactly one month in Colombia. But we’re planning to get back there. After we traveled down to Chile we want to drive all the way back to Colombia again. We really enjoyed heading across Colombia and we felt always very safe. In Buga, Colombia, we spent the night at a nice little…

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Ain’t No Road Too Long

Ain’t No Road Too Long

Herbie is following with us the Pan-American Highway through Colombia. It is amazing to watch all the different landscapes. Yesterday we passed Medellin and tomorrow we’ll get very close to the border of Ecuador. There ain’t no road too long for Herbie!

The Panamericana

The Panamericana

The Pan-American Highway or rather “Panamericana” is the longest drivable road on earth, measuring about 29,800 miles (or 47,960 kilometers) in its total length. We have already driven its roads within the USA, Mexico and all Central American countries. Now we are cruising the South American section of the “Panamericana”. Colombia’s Pan-American Highway is getting more and more scenic as we’re heading further South. And we are yet very excited to explore Colombia’s Andes.

Herbie’s Back on Track!

Herbie’s Back on Track!

We finally left Cartagena of the Indies heading southwards. Herbie’s doing well again. Everything is working! He enjoys following the great Pan-American Highway. Yesterday we were driving along Highway No. 90 and 25 towards Medellin. We spent the night at a motel just outside of of a bigger town called Sincelejo. Today we’ll be heading further South towards Medellin. In just a couple days we’ll cross the border to Ecuador – a country which Domi already visited in the year…

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Hit the Road, Herbie!

Hit the Road, Herbie!

We got it done! After “wasting” eleven days in Cartagena because of a huge electrical problem caused by one of the jacks on the ship, Herbie is back on the road again! Domi had to take out several parts within the engine bay a third but very last time today. He installed the new generator, regulator and electronic ignition. On February 8, we came to Colombia. First we had to wait for Herbie’s vessel which was more than two weeks…

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The Moment of Truth

The Moment of Truth

Actually we were told that it is impossible to get a generator (dynamo) in Colombia, but we finally got a new one today. At last we can install both parts tomorrow morning. It was really a nightmare that came true for us the last weeks. We had to go through a very, very stressful time, but we always tried to believe in a solution. If everything works out well tomorrow we’ll be truly happy to leave Cartagena. Domi has to…

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With a Little Help from My Friends

With a Little Help from My Friends

A thrilling day is coming up! We’ll hopefully receive the new alternator today and Domi is able do the whole conversion from generator to alternator. Therefore he sought for last hints and contacted his dear friends from Europe – Andi, Flo and Friedrich. Andi lives in Bavaria, Flo was attending a class at his university in Vienna, Friedrich stays at a hospital in Burgenland and we are in Colombia. We were all connected via internet chatting about the conversion and…

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Generator vs. Alternator

Generator vs. Alternator

Today we had to find out that the repairs on Herbie’s original generator, made by our “mechanic”, the managing automotive electrician of Cartagena’s port, were useless. The dynamo still has an accidental ground short, caused by the fire which was created by the switched-on ignition. So we wanted to order another dynamo, but as there was no chance to get an old fashioned dynamo or rather generator (current flow) in Colombia, we had to order an alternator (alternating current), which…

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It’s Not Over Yet

It’s Not Over Yet

We spent another day at the repair shop. Our “mechanic” came up with two used regulators from Barranquilla but both of them were not working. We immediately ordered a brand new one from Bogota, the capital of Colombia. Tomorrow afternoon we’ll hopefully receive the new regulator. Additionally there is still the dynamo which is not working properly. One week is over and Herbie is not reanimated yet. But we hope that we’ll be back on the road very soon and…

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Never Ending Story

Never Ending Story

It seems to get a never ending story. We already spent one week going through a lot of nerve-wracking times. But there is hope in sight, because the automotive electrician who has been trying to fix all damages in cooperation with Domi, told us, that he’ll receive a new regulator tomorrow morning. We’ll let you know if everything worked out. If so, we can go on with following the Pan-American Highway across South America.

Rage Against The Water Machine

Rage Against The Water Machine

People like Andreas Schülein from Sugenheim, Germany, write about about our journey of “34 Ponys around the Globe”. Andi found us on the internet and got in touch with us. By clicking the picture you can visit Andi’s personal website about his passion for old air-cooled VWs. It is called “Rage Against The Water Machine”. At this juncture we want to say thank you to Andi and all the others who are following Herbie’s World Tour!

Monday, Monday

Monday, Monday

After so many delays of the vessel we were so happy to see Herbie, our No. 53, again! But since that we’re going through a martyrdom. Domi had to take dynamo out of the engine two times. Finally we got it fixed but there is still one thing missing – a new regulator. Because of the weekend we have to wait until late Monday to receive the new one. We had to order it from Barranquilla, another city on the…

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High Voltage!

High Voltage!

It’s getting really frustrating! Herbie is not fixed yet because there is still one part missing. Everything was perfect until our Love Bug got on his vessel heading South. Today Domi installed again all “repaired” parts and it seemed to be working but the regulator we bought was obviously broken because it didn’t regulate the voltage. Below you can see a picture of the “new” (electric) regulator we bought. The problem is that it has not told the dynamo not…

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Why hurt Herbie?

Why hurt Herbie?

As we told you before, an unknown person hurt Herbie a lot, while he was on his ship going from Veracruz, Mexico, to Cartagena of the Indies in Colombia. That person not only broke his lid lock, he also tried to open the front hood, turned on the windshield wipers, the ignition and other electric consumers and left them all on. He left all of those features on and caused a huge damage. The alternator and the regulator got grilled….

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Hope is the Last to Die

Hope is the Last to Die

Today we went together to the port again where we parked Herbie yesterday after we found out that somebody on the ship caused a fatal electric problem. That person turned on the ignition, the windshield wipers and the interior light and left Herbie simply alone – on his cruise across the open sea to South America. As a consequence of this the electricity heated parts as the alternator up which created at least a short within the coil of it….

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Herbie’s Nightmare

Herbie’s Nightmare

We woke up very early today, because Domi had to get to the appointment with a custom executive for getting the vehicle inspected. There he was, Herbie our Love Bug! Domi spent three hours with Herbie waiting for the inspector but he didn’t show up. So it was time for a personal check. Domi was shocked and sad at the same time! Okay, dirt and rust might be common, but we think it is not necessary to damage a car…

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A Red Tape Odyssey

A Red Tape Odyssey

This was an exhausting day for us! And sadly we have to wait at least one more day to obtain Herbie who is still sitting at the sea port and whom we haven’t seen yet. In the morning we took a taxi to our shipping agency in order to get the original Bill of Lading (B/L). After that we went to the local customs just a few blocks further. They sent us to the port authority where Zainab was not…

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Not yet, Herbie!

Not yet, Herbie!

Herbie’s vessel, the “Global Leader”, should arrive in Cartagena of the West Indies by tomorrow, according to its latest prediction. On January 26 we had to say “good-bye” to our lovely Bug. We miss him a lot! Hopefully we’ll get him back very soon. Today we saw a Volkswagen Beetle here in Colombia for the first time – against one’s expectations in a pretty good shape, if you think of the harsh climate down here. Regarding to its hood it…

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Happy Valentine’s Day!

Happy Valentine’s Day!

We hope all of you had a happy Valentine’s day. In Cartagena two guys were giving free hugs and kisses. Their signs were written in English so we guess it was just meant for people who are able to read and understand this language. For us it is just a day like any other – hugs and kisses every day!

Roll-On / Roll-Off

Roll-On / Roll-Off

There are different types of shipping a vehicle. The most common ones are by container, “LoLo” (Lift-On/Lift-Off) and “RoRo” (Roll-On/Roll-Off). This time we’re shipping Herbie via “RoRo” from Veracruz to Cartagena – across the Golf of Mexico and the Caribbean. There are always pros and cons regarding the various types. We also tried the container option. Herbie and our trailer “Qek” got 44 foot containers from Chennai (India) to Melbourne (Australia) and from Brisbane to Long Beach (USA). From Sharjah…

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Where the Hell is Herbie?

Where the Hell is Herbie?

As we are already in Cartagena, Colombia, Herbie is on his way going to South America by ship. His vessel, the “Global Leader”, is meanwhile rescheduled the fourth time. According to the latest schedule Herbie arrives in Cartagena on February 17. We’d love to drive all the way around the world but as we posted before there is no other way than shipping to get a car from North or Central America to South, because of the so-called Darién Gap…

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Veracruz, Mexico (Final No. VII)

Veracruz, Mexico (Final No. VII)

Yesterday it was our last day in Veracruz and with Daniel. He’ll fly back home to Europe in the afternoon today. We already took off to Mexico City waiting for our connection flight via Panama City to Cartagena, Colombia, where Herbie will arrive one week later.

Veracruz, Mexico (No. VI)

Veracruz, Mexico (No. VI)

Today we spent time strolling through the streets of Veracruz. It was also our last day with Domi’s best friend Daniel. Tomorrow he’ll fly back to Vienna, Austria, and we’ll head off for Cartagena, Colombia, in order to continue our trip across South America.

The Última Edición

The Última Edición

The Volkswagen Bug was introduced to Mexicans in 1954. At that time four VW Beetles were shipped to Veracruz. The first Bug “Hecho en Mexico” was assembled in 1961. In 1971 more than 200,000 units were produced and the exports to Europe and Costa Rica began. Just nine years later, in 1980, already more than a million were made. In 1985, the official export to Europe ended and 20 million were sold. These were the reasons to launch a special…

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Veracruz, Mexico (No. V)

Veracruz, Mexico (No. V)

Still in Veracruz, but meanwhile a very good friend of Domi is visiting us here in Mexico. He’ll stay until we head off to South America. Today Herbie is supposed to go on board.

Veracruz, Mexico (No. IV)

Veracruz, Mexico (No. IV)

Yesterday we were a little bit shopping and Domi bought himself a new hat. We asked for the biggest size but the one we got was still too small until the seller reshaped it. In the following you can get more impressions of the metropolis on the Golf of Mexico.

Shipping Delay No. 2

Shipping Delay No. 2

Herbie’s ship, the “Global Leader”, got another delay. This is quite frustrating! Every day of traveling is like meeting a new challenge. You have to go through it, because there is no other way out. Therefore we are still in Veracruz waiting for the vessel’s departure. But we’ll go by plane to Cartagena, Columbia, on February 8, in order to pick up “Ocho” three days later. Hopefully there will be no further delay.