Cabanaconde is an interesting place but it still has many problems to be solved. One of the main problems is the lack of knowledge about tourism.
I won´t make of this article an essay about tourism but there is much to do in Cabanaconde.
The last time I visited Cabanaconde, was last year, and I took part in a mountainbiking event in Colca Canyon.
We arrived early to Cabanaconde and we were recommended to have breakfast in a place called Pachamama Home.
The bus driver recommended us this place to all the group, and said to us that the owner, a man called Ludwig was his friend and that we were going to be treated properly.
Well, it seemed to us that we were going to have a good breakfast. We went to the place and the cooks were really friendly, and the guys from the TV program we were traveling with, decided to interview them.
We had breakfast. At the end the bill comes and the price was not the one agreed. They overcharged everything. We understand that all things and goods are taken from Arequipa, but come on guys you have to be reasonable.
Tourists we are not stupid. A bottle of wine costs in Arequipa 20 soles and the same wine here 60 soles. I am not going to make a list of costs, but if you say that the BREAKFAST has a specific price, please respect it. Don´t lie to the clients,because of people like you the imagen of tourism in Peru is terrible.
We tried to talk with the owner and we were told that he was not there in that moment.
His “replacement” was a gringo backpacker who tried to cheat us with the prices of breakfast. What he was doing there? If I have a business, especially one that deals with tourists I have to hire a person with knowledge about tourism with a friendly, reliable attitude. I am not going to hire a couple of jerks because I will go bankrupt in a couple of months.
After the event I decided to check the web page of these guys and everything is good. The classical web page. Web pages cannot be trusted much because all of the owners and services they offer are good. All of them work properly, and the most funny thing is that all of them say that are involved in charity activities.
Not even one of these hotels, restaurants or travel agencies has a certificate of quality. Neither an award or something that says that they are really good. I can tell many things about myself but in reality can be other thing.
If these guys say that they provide a high quality service why the hotel had an unpolite backpacker in charge of the restaurant and the hotel? It seemed to me that he was picked up from the streets from Arequipa, dirty, unpolite. What kind of service is that? If I were you Mr. Ludwig I would fire those guys inmediately before your business goes bankrupt.
The next day, I went by myself and I ate in a local restaurant in Cabanaconde and it was really good. Besides, the food was better quality and gladly I would have payed more for the food. The lady there didnt´t speak English but she was good, smiling all the time. We asked for a lemon. She didn´t have one, but without hesitation she went to market to buy some lemons for us. Different from the attitude taken by the Pachamama Home workers.
The local authorities have to realize that if theywant to increase the flow of tourists to Cabanaconde the services have to be improved in all different areas. If not, be sure that everybody is going to go away. Cabanaconde is a beautiful place but if the tour guides are not professional and if the services quality is low, tourism in Cabanaconde won´t go far.Nothing important can be done with unpolite, uneducated people. Be sure of that.
Next time I go to Cabanaconde I don´t plan to visit Pachamama Home anymore...Neither I will pay attention to the bus driver. I will find out by myself.
The Colca Specialist.