Why travel to Peru?

Discover the spirit of the Incas with a journey across iconic Peru. Offering one of the most diverse climates in the world, Peru is home to 30 out of the 32 climates in the world. Take your pick from jungle, coast, desert, mountains or city… whichever takes your fancy!

It’s rich Andean and Incan culture, ancient history and inspiring landscapes provide a myriad of reasons to visit this beautiful country.  The mysterious ancient sites of Machu Picchu, Sacsayhuaman and the Nazca Lines are but 3 of these reasons.

Take the Inca Trail to the intriguing Machu Picchu for an experience like no other. An amazing citadel with a prime place in Incan history. Either trek or take the train. But definitely go at least once in your lifetime!

Explore the Andean towns of Arequipa and Cusco. Peruse magnificent cathedrals and colonial architecture as you meander through ancient Incan streets.  Witness the infamous Condor in full flight at Colca Canyon, or the terrifying nocturnal jungle sounds of as you sleep amongst the flooded rainforest.

And if that is not enough … Lake Titicaca and the Uros Islands show you a completely different side to the culture and lifestyle of the local residents. Not only will you fall in love with Peru, it will forever be talked about as the best trip you have ever made! Above all, Peru is immersive travel at its best.

Map & Highlights

Click on the orange circles to read more information about the location and its highlights.

Machu Picchu

For many travellers to Peru, Machu Picchu is the ‘bucket list’ highlight of their trip. Set hig

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Arequipa

Surrounded by not 1 but 3 volcanoes (the most famous being El Misti) and filled with colonial-era ar

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Cusco

Once the capital of the Inca Empire still has the remnants of the civilisation throughout the city.

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Lake Titicaca

Straddling the borders of both Peru and Bolivia, situated high in the Andes, Lake Titicaca can be ac

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Nazca

Situated in Southern Peru, the Nazca Lines are a set of mysterious inscriptions in the desert, depic

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Colca Canyon

Often cited as being one of the world’s deepest canyons at nearly 11,000 feet deep; twice the dept

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Lima

The capital of Peru, situated on the Pacific coast and surrounded by arid desert. Founded by Francis

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Amazon Rainforest

Often overshadowed by its Brazilian counterpart, the Peruvian Amazon rainforest offers an equally en

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Paracas National Reserve

This Reserve offers sanctuary to over 200 species of birds and 16 types of mammals. Covering an area

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  • Machu Picchu

    For many travellers to Peru, Machu Picchu is the ‘bucket list’ highlight of their trip. Set high above the cloud forest and Urubamba River, lies this spectacular mountain-side citadel. Perhaps the best know archaeological site in South America, Machu Picchu maintains an intriguing, mysterious atmosphere despite having up to 2500 visitors a day. Built in the 15th century, this abandoned site is access on foot (via trekking the Inca Trail) or by train through the Sacred Valley.

  • Arequipa

    Surrounded by not 1 but 3 volcanoes (the most famous being El Misti) and filled with colonial-era architecture, this beautiful city provides an amazing introduction to the food and culture of Peru. Visit the Monastery of Santa Catalina, run by nuns of the Dominican Second Order; or explore the historical centre and cathedral at the Plaza de Armas.

  • Cusco

    Once the capital of the Inca Empire still has the remnants of the civilisation throughout the city. Near to the Sacred Valley this is the perfect base from which to start your journey to Machu Picchu. A cosmopolitan town with narrow cobbled streets, locals in traditional Peruvian dress and evidence of its rich and complex past on every corner. The city is surrounded by ancient ruins, the most notable being Sacsayhuaman, the site of a famous battle with the Spanish invaders.

  • Lake Titicaca

    Straddling the borders of both Peru and Bolivia, situated high in the Andes, Lake Titicaca can be accessed from either country. Reportedly the largest lake in South America and the highest navigable lake in the world, it is famed in Peruvian culture as being the birthplace of the sun. Best accessed via Puno (Peru) to explore the floating Uros Islands, made from the reeds of the lake and home to the indigenous Uro locals.

  • Nazca

    Situated in Southern Peru, the Nazca Lines are a set of mysterious inscriptions in the desert, depicting animals, geometric shapes and plants. Covering nearly 1000 sq. kilometres, there are over 300 icons, visible only from the air or specific viewing platforms. Whilst there are many theories on where they came from, their origin still remains a mystery.

  • Colca Canyon

    Often cited as being one of the world’s deepest canyons at nearly 11,000 feet deep; twice the depth of the Grand Canyon. It is the natural habitat of the Andean condor, often seen soaring in the skies above Colca Canyon looking down on intrepid travellers, hikers and local farmers.

    Explore the green valley, pre-Inca terracing and remote traditional villages in this majestic place.

  • Lima

    The capital of Peru, situated on the Pacific coast and surrounded by arid desert. Founded by Francisco Pizarro (of Spanish conquistador fame) in 1535, Lima shares its violent past through stories of the Spanish Inquisition in a dedicated museum near to the Plaza de Armas. Stroll through elegant cathedrals, beachfront neighbourhoods and fabulous eateries in this cosmopolitan city of contrasts.

  • Amazon Rainforest

    Often overshadowed by its Brazilian counterpart, the Peruvian Amazon rainforest offers an equally enthralling experience for travellers. Commonly accessed via Puerto Maldonado, then via canoe trip to a rainforest lodge. Keep a look out for jaguars, ant-eaters, anacondas, caiman and piranhas whilst on your jungle travels.

  • Paracas National Reserve

    This Reserve offers sanctuary to over 200 species of birds and 16 types of mammals. Covering an area of both land and sea it is considered to be one of the richest ecosystems in the world. Not only is it home to countless wildlife, the Park is also home to various archeological sites, such as pre-Incan carvings on the hillside. The Park is often used as a base to visit the nearby Ballestas Islands.

When to go

Peru is widely known as an all-round destination but the best time to visit depends on kind of activities you want to do. Peru has 2 main seasons (wet and dry). The dry season is generally between May and September, so this is the best time to do the Inca trail trek. This does mean that places are busier so its always best to book in advance. November to March is the wettest time of year, but brings the benefit of greener scenery, flooded forest and lighter crowds.

Temperature and Rainfall

Click a location to view temp and rainfall for that area

  • Cusco
  • Lima
  • Paracas National Reserve

Things to do

Inca Trail
The most magnificent way to enter Machu Picchu lies at the end of this infamous trek. Consisting of 3 overlapping routes you can complete in between 4 and 7 days.
Amazon
Covering more than 60% of Peruvian territory, the rainforest is often overlooked on tours of Peru. Board a motorised canoe from Puerto Maldonado and head to your jungle lodge. Search for the unique animal and plant life as you embark on a canopy walk or take a canoe trip around an oxbow lake.
Uros Islands
Visit the floating islands of Lake Titicaca. Created almost entirely from locally grown totora reeds

Food and drink

Ceviche
a raw seafood dish, cured in lemon, lime or orange and spiked with the heat of a few chilli peppers.
Pisco Sour
Made with a type of local brandy and mixed with syrup, lime and egg whites. An acquired taste, but definitely worth a try with your meal.
Cuy
if you’re fond of your pet guinea pig then this may not be the one for you! A traditional Quechuan dish which is well known for being a Peruvian delicacy.

Responsible tourism

Fair Pay– if you’re considering trekking in Peru or looking for local tours then be sure to pay a fair price for the services of guides and porters.  As in a number of countries, whilst the rights of workers are protected, there are a number of unscrupulous companies that still manage to exploit their workers. Always check the current minimum wage for these types of workers and ensure that you are paying above this level. Working conditions can be difficult so please adhere to the maximum weight limit for your luggage – otherwise one of the porters will be carrying a load that is much higher than the recommended health and safety limit.

Local Working Conditions– we all have a responsibility to make sure that the people helping us on our travels (be it porters, guides, drivers etc) are well cared for.  Checking that they have appropriate sleeping conditions on treks, are well-fed and clothed properly, are all essential pre-travel checks to make. And if you see something untoward, report it.

World Animal Protection reported a 292% increase in the number of wildlife selfies posted online; of which 40% were ‘bad’ selfies (e.g. people hugging, kissing or inappropriately interacting with a wild animal).  If an animal is meant to be in the wild … then leave them that way.  Don’t support attractions that ‘tame’, restrict or train animals to perform for our entertainment.  The greatest entertainment an animal can provide, is the sight of them going about their business independently and in their natural habitat.  For more information please visit our Animal Tourism Guide.

Saving the Rainforest– Peru is one of the top 10 most bio-diverse countries world-wide, with over half of its land covered in forest. Over 300,000 people depend directly on these forests to earn their living, and countless more rely on the natural ecosystem benefits from the forest itself.

Despite this, deforestation is a huge problem – with over 1,000 square miles of forest list each year. Fortunately the Peruvian Government is taking action through initiatives to establish national parks and protected ‘eco-tourist’ regions which both promote and protect the region.  We can support these initiatives through making responsible travel choices.  Only use trusted suppliers and lodges where there is a proven track record of their commitment to conserving the rainforest and its communities. It just takes a bit of pre-planning.

Animal Tourism– every country attracts its fair share of cruel animal tourism attractions.  Our general rule is that if you visit somewhere and you are concerned about the health and well-being of the animals … vote with your feet!  The less trade these attractions get from visiting tourists, the less likely they are to ‘put on a show’.

Helping Local Communities– Shop and stay locally, wherever possible.  A number of our tours have options for ‘homestays’, where you will stay overnight in the local community or family home.  Not only does this give you the opportunity to directly support local families, you also get a real insight into the life of the locals.  A real ‘off the beaten track’ experience.

Fast facts

  • Capital city Lima
  • Currency Nuevo Sol
  • Language Spanish, Quechua, Aymara
  • Time difference GMT-5
  • Flight time 12.5 hours