Reasons to Visit
The Andes in Peru are home a vast array of micro-climates and eco-systems. Deserts, canyons, high altiplano, lush cloudforest, fertile valleys, snow capped peaks and glaciers, and not to forget classic Inca terracing systems, are all common landscapes that can be seen on a trip within the country.
Beyond the renowned famous Inca trail to Machu Picchu, southern Peru offers dozens of treks and walks. Whether you are seeking a one day walk through Andean villages or a 10 day trek along less-trodden trails then there will be an option for you. Whilst most treks involve basic camping, there are also some lodge to lodge options for those seeking a little more comfort.
Machu Picchu is the obvious draw of any trip to Peru, but there are many more Inca and pre-Incan sites to interest archaeologists and historians at all levels. From the Sacred Valley of the Inca’s to the lesser explored pre-Incan ruins on the northern coast and the vast pre-Incan city of Kuelap, Peru has the greatest array of sites in South America.
Peru has many fine examples of colonial architecture throughout the country. Lima, Arequipa and Cuzco have well documented and beautifully-maintained historical centres that take visitors back to the Spanish era.
The draw for trekkers from across the globe, the Classic Inca Trail takes walkers on a 4-day adventure through the high Andes and past a huge number of small Inca sites, all the way to Machu Picchu. Diversifying in recent years, the trail can offer options for all abilities, budgets and timescales. Alternative Inca trails also provide the opportunity to get away from the mainstream and provide varied levels of comfort.
The jewel in the Inca crown set high on a plateau in the Andes. Breath-takingly beautiful the site rarely disappoints. The trick to exploring these majestic ruins is in the planning process, which is where our country specialists come in.
Easily accessible from Cuzco, the southern Peruvian rainforest has a number of simple lodges, catering for guests who are looking for their first Amazon experience through to the ultimate wildlife enthusiasts. Alternatively, from the northern city of Iquitos, travellers can choose from a number of cruise boats into the pristine Pacaya Samiria Reserve.
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Once reputed to be the most beautiful city in all of Spanish America, Lima today can be something of a challenge. It is, however, brimming with heritage and a worthwhile stop for a night or two.
The main attractions are those that remain of the colonial and Republican era, such as the bustling Plaza de Armas with its grand Presidential Palace and cathedral where the remains of Francisco Pizarro, who conquered the Inca Empire for the Spanish, are thought to be interred.
The museums are particularly worth exploring and it is here that Lima comes into its own as an informative and entertaining city, as you learn about the fascinating cultures whose remnants you will see later on your trip.
The Inca and pre-Inca ceramics at Larco Herrera and the amazing collection of weapons and jewellery at the Gold Museum are not to be missed, and a meal at the Huaca Pucllana restaurant, which overlooks the site of a major pre-Inca archaeological dig, is recommended.
Lima is also the starting point for the recently restored train service to Huancayo, the world’s highest passenger railway and an engineering masterpiece.
The train picks its way out of Lima before climbing a breathless 4,829 metres in six hours, and then threads its way through a plateau of glacial lakes, mining towns and fertile valleys on its way to Huancayo. Please contact us for departure dates of this train.
13 days from £2,835pp
14 days from £2,915pp
10 days from £2,320pp
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Include a visit to Lima on your tailor-made trip around Peru by contacting one of our specialists...
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