Adventure into a near mythical land of ancient ruins and beautiful scenery
Peru seems to almost personify everything that Latin America has to offer, boasting sublime mountain scenery, a history stretching back thousands of years, delightfully welcoming locals and numerous surprises along the way. At the heart of it all lies Machu Picchu, UNESCO world heritage site, modern wonder of the world and the jewel in Latin America's gloriously beautiful crown. Yet while Machu Picchu is rightly often the thing that draws people to Peru, the truth is that many leave besotted with absolutely everything this country has to offer
Archaeology for all
It is almost impossible to visit Peru without becoming fascinated by its archaeology and even those who have no previous interest in the subject will become drawn in by the accessibility, relevance and beauty of Peru's archaeology. Peru's history, and in many ways that of Latin America as a whole is told in the ruins and artifacts that litter Peru. From the living heritage of the settlements dotting Lake Titicaca, to the ancient villages of the Colca Canyon and of course the stunning ruins surrounding Cusco, The Sacred Valley and Machu Picchu visitors are taken on an enthralling journey through the history of a continent in a visceral and tangible way. Peru truly does feel like a historic great, happily rubbing shoulders with the likes of Greece and Rome
That's not to say that Peru is dry and boring, this is also a vibrantly active country and the reason that the history is so enticing is that you can get to it in any number of ways. Hike the centuries old pathways of the Incas as you make your way up to Machu Picchu (arrival by luxury train is also available for those who like a more relaxed approach), mountain bike through the villages and ruins of the Sacred Valley of the Incas, kayak through the Amazon Rainforest or plod through the vistas of the Colca Valley on horseback. The truth is you can be as active or as relaxed as you like in Peru, but for thrill seekers this is certainly a country waiting to be discovered
It has long been known that Peruvians have a taste for some exotic fare, and it's true that Guinea Pig is a local delicacy (it really does taste just like chicken), but the reality is that in recent years Peru has become something of a gastronomic hot-spot. Peruvian cuisine sits all on its own, thanks to its eclectic mix of influences, from China to Spain, which have been fused with indigenous styles to create one of the worlds most delicious cuisines. The capital Lima sits at the heart of this with numerous restaurants that regularly feature in best restaurants in the world lists. More than that however, most cities - from Arequipa to Cusco - boast delicious local restaurants and the truth is that it is difficult to have a bad meal in Peru. So banish those thoughts of Guinea Pig and replace them with thoughts of delicious Ceviches, piquant stews and tropical fruits and vegetables; although we would still recommend at least trying Guinea Pig if you get the chance!
Peru is one of the most accessible destination in Latin America and it makes for a great first foray into the continent. Luxurious hotels, stunning rail journeys and the incredibly high standard of guiding mean that Peru really does deserve its spot as one of the must-see destinations in the world
This is what you came for! Machu Picchu is one of the most photographed locations on earth, yet being here in the flesh makes your realise how the photos in no way do this simply stunning site justice - it certainly deserves its title as one of the modern wonders of the world.
Peru's second city, Arequipa is one of South America's most picturesque, built out of the local white volcanic stone quarried from the towering volcanoes that seem to guard the city. Its heart is a superb example of colonial architecture and bustling with Peruvian life. It is also the gateway to the stunning Colca Valley that ends with the awesome Colca Canyon, twice as deep as the Grand Canyon this is one of natures most impressive spectacles.
Cusco means 'navel of the world' in the language of the Incas, and if all Italian roads lead to Rome all Incan roads lead to Cusco, former capital of the Incan Empire. This city is filled with history, from its Incan roots to its modern colonial facades, it is guarded by the stunning Incan fortress of Sacsayhuaman, that hints of the ruins to be found as you leave the city for the Sacred Valley of the Incas. This rural idyll offers wondrous views, numerous excursions and welcoming hotels. It is also the departure point for your journey to Machu Picchu
For the Incan's Lake Titicaca was revered as the spiritual birthplace of their empire, and today it retains a sense of mysticism. Shimmering amongst the Andes at over 4000m it is the highest navigable lake in the world and forms the border between Peru and Bolivia. Inhabited by the descendants of Incas there is a traditional feel to the region. The floating reed islands of Uros and the indigenous population of Taquile Island offer visitors a glimpse at this past life
Journeys into the Amazonian Rainforest are easily done in Peru and there are two main options. Puerto Maldonado in the south of the country offers a range of lodges, from luxury to rustic, from which you can set out to explore the Madre de Dios area sitting only 1 hours flight from Cusco it is an accessible option. For those looking for a real treat the more distant northern city of Iquitos is the embarkation for 5* luxury cruises into the heart of the jungle.
Our Destination Specialists
our destination specialist
Have you ever wondered about the team behind your holiday? Our expert team are always on hand and invite you to give them a call to discuss your perfect holiday with Azure.
We are passionate about travel and that passion drives our desire to ensure you have your perfect holiday every time. Our promise to you is your best ever tailor-made holiday01244 322770
- Monday to Friday 9am to 5:30pm
- Saturday 9:30 am to 1pm
- Sunday Closed
Find out the essentials before you go.
- Time Difference
GMT - 4
- Flight Duration
12 hours 15 minutes
Spanish & Quechua (indigenous language)
- Best Time To Travel
May to October
- Visa Needed
UK passport holders do not require a visa
- Combines Well With
Ecuador & The Galapagos, Bolivia, Brazil