Peru has more ancient archaeological sites than any other country in South America. Undeniably one of the world’s top spots to visit, the Inca Trail and Machu Picchu are a must-see but the country has so many other fabulous sites just waiting to be discovered.
Our Tailormade Regional Specialists Maria and Hanna have suggested a few of their favourite places not to be missed:
Lake Titicaca – Straddling both Bolivia and Peru, the beautiful blue waters are home to indigenous people living and cultivating the land on Taquile Island and the floating Uros Islands. Lake Titicaca can be explored from Puno in Peru or Copacabana in Bolivia.
The Amazon Jungle – Puerto Maldonado is the starting point to visit the jungle reserves of Manu and Tambopata, where visitors go in search of tapir, capybara and colourful birdlife from their jungle lodges. Further north, Iquitos is the starting point to explore the area by river boat cruise. In addition to wildlife and jungle scenery, this part of the jungle is also where ancient Amazonian tribes still reside.
Beaches – Although it is not known for its beaches Peru has some wonderful seaside spots to end a busy sightseeing or trekking holiday. Located in the north, Cabo Blanco was the inspiration for Ernest Hemmingway’s The Old Man and the Sea and is a great place for surfing and fishing, while Vichayito and Los Pocitas are perfect for swimming and sunbathing.
Cusco and the Sacred Valley - Fabulous colonial architecture, stunning scenery, great trekking, river rafting, mountain biking, beautiful textiles and traditional handicrafts, Cusco really does have something for everyone. Coincide your visit with Inti Raymi, on 24th June, a colourful festival celebrating the winter solstice.
Arequipa – A bustling town; but step into Santa Catalina convent and its a completely different story. This 400 year old convent is a miniature walled city; a quiet haven of blue and white buildings, and peaceful alleyways adorned with brightly coloured hanging baskets. Visit the Museo Santuarios de Altura in the centre of Arequipa where you will find Juanita or The Ice Maiden, one of the world’s best-preserved mummies.
Colca Canyon – As deep as the Grand Canyon in the USA, Colca Canyon is home to the majestic Andean condor which can be seen soaring, sometimes at eye-level, in the early morning skies. Enjoy the beautiful scenery of snow-capped mountains and pre-Inca terracing before relaxing in the thermal springs.