Travel to Peru

Peru is a spectacular destination located next to the Pacific Ocean bordered by Brazil, Bolivia, Chile, Columbia and Ecuador. Peru is appealing for so many reasons, this is one of the most naturally diverse nations in the world with beaches, mountains and the Amazon. Visiting Peru is the experience of a lifetime and we have lots of travel packages which will take you off the beaten track where you can see new places and learn more about the history, culture and tradition of the country.


 
 

Things to Do, Travel Ideas & Holidays in Peru

Find activities, experiences, travel packages, backpacking ideas, eco & adventure holidays in Peru.

Peru Travel Guide

Peru Travel Guide

Get information, tips, itineraries and inspiration for visiting Peru.

  • Capital: Lima (Population: 8,000,000 approx)
  • Currency: Nuevo Sol (PEN) £1 = 4PEN / $1 = 2.5PEN (approx)
  • Area: 1,300,000 sq km (approx)
  • Population: 30,000,000 (approx)
  • Language: Spanish, whilst also some Mayan + local languages
  • International Calling Code +51
  • Climate: There is a warm climate nearly all year round
  • Transport: In Peru you can travel by bus, train, plane or boat
  • Getting There: Most international flights arrive into Lima which is a busy city, the rest of the country is very different to this city
  • Visa: A tourist visa is granted on arrival at the border / airport, you can stay for 180 days if you are a British passport holder. This should be more than enough time to travel and see more of this country whilst also they will not ask for proof of funds or ask to see if you have an outbound flight
  • Accommodation: There are numerous hostels and hotels in Peru with budget and expensive options, if you book a program through our website accommodation is usually provided in the price. Hotels / hostels are very cheap
  • Transport: There are lots of ways to travel, you can pre-book an experience or you could also try by bus or take internal flights. There are so many bus routes and daily flights which are both cheap. Bus is the cheapest way to experience Peru but journeys can take a long time. There are buses for all budgets, public transport is good whilst there are also luxury buses which include air conditioning and food. 
  • Safety: Peru is a safe country and the locals are very accustomed to foreign tourists. Try to travel with others and don't go wandering into any remote areas at night especially in a city like Lima. On some trips you can see an ancient Shamen ritual, but please be careful with local drink as its strong and also drugs its best to avoid

 

Travelling & Backpacking in Peru

Wrapped around by clouds and shrouded in myths, local legends and a rich history that we may even occasionally catch a glimpse of, Peru is truly unique. It represents a timeless landscape that is the stuff that living dreams - and living history - are made of. And finally, most obviously, and so most easily overlooked, there are Peru’s mountains. So easily rendered as the mere backdrop to other activities, the mountains themselves are a mecca for climbers and outdoor enthusiasts generally. 

Peru Boasts: 

  • 50 peaks over 6000 metres ( 19,685 ft ) 
  • 1769 Glaciers 
  • 12000 lakes and lagoons 
  • The highest dune in the world at 2080m is The Cerro Blanco near the coastal city of Nazca 
  • Two of the world’s deepest canyons:  Cotahuasi (3600m) and Colca (3400m) near Arequipa

Peru is built for tourists and there are lots of opportunities for you to explore this amazing country. Although Peru is a small country there is certainly a lot to see and do, thousands of people visit every year and it is easy to see why. With peaks exceeding 5000m, coastal deserts, rain-forests, ancient sites and unqiue destinations, Peru appeals for so many reasons and our activity and adventure holidays will get you inspired to visit.

There are so many cultural highlights, you could visit the desert, explore the Amazon rainforest or seek our history and archictecture in cities and rural areas. Destinations you might want to add to a visit list, these include the Amazon, Machu Picchu, Lake Titicaca, Urubamba Valley not to mention the vibrant cities of Cusco and Lima. A lot of travelers find Peru to be their favorite country in South America and with so many things to do it is easy to see why. The lush forests and rolling hills could just as easily be a fairytale land as they could be the backdrop to a Jane Austen novel. What could possibly be better than kayaking together down a glistening river, flanked by snow-capped mountains, or hiking up a hill to find that perfect spot to throw down a picnic blanket and watch the sunset?

There is the option to explore cities like Lima and Cusco and take you off the beaten track to see more of Peru's best destinations. Amazon adventures are highly recommended if you want to see exotic wildlife and lush tropical jungle. Our website features activity and adventure trips from some of the worlds leading travel operators where you can see the world famous ancient lost Inca city of Machu Pichu. Visiting places like Lake Titicaca with a friendly bunch of people is a lot better than traveling solo. You also get a local guide and will be able to relax whilst all the trip is taken care of. You can also buy local art and creations here which are great for presents.Lake Titicaca is one of the most spectacular lakes in the world and you can visit from both Bolivia and Peru, the lake is sandwiched inbetween both.

 

Top Activites & Experiences

  • Hiking the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu (you can also take a train ride and do this trip in one day)
  • Travelling off the beaten track and visiting the Amazon region where there are remote villages, wildlife and adventure trips
  • Seeing the Nazca Lines which can also be seen from space!
  • Learning to surf or just relaxing on beaches in Máncora (Peru might not strike you as a beach destination but this place will not dissapoint)
  • The Parque Nacional Manu is a top place to visit, experience a real life cloud forest and see lots of wildlife
  • Go sandboarding on sanddunes located in Huacachina
  • Huaraz is a good destination if you are looking to join a trekking trip, the views are spectacular here too
  • Travel to Southern Peru and see the largest lake in South America Lake Titicaca
  • See the UNESCO World Heritage site of Chan Chan where there are ancient ruins to explore

 

Recommended Cities to Visit

  • Explore Lima and find tasty local food, cafes, restaurants, museums, beautiful buildings and great nightlife
  • The old Inca capital Cuzco is a really pretty city to visit, you'll walk anvient cobbled streets and get a feel for life in Peru here
  • Arequipa has beautiful white buildings made from volcanic stone, there are picture opportunities around every turn
  • Huaraz has views and treks to take your breath away

 

History of Peru 

Peru was at the heart of one of the most extensive empires the world has ever seen - the Incas - and even earlier it was the setting for some of mankind’s earliest experiments with irrigation, large-scale agriculture and urbanization. Anyone visiting the vertiginous kingdom will come away awed by a sense of historical vertigo - and a living connection to that history - that simply has to be experienced to be believed.

Peru was in fact the setting for one of human kind’s earliest founding civilizations, dating back as far as anything in Europe, Africa or Asia. Pyramid-like structures and similarly grand architecture was developed long before the Pyramids of Egypt and the supposed cradle of civilization in Mesopotamia were established. The ancient civilization of Northern Peru remains an elusive chapter in global history not least because so much of what counts as ‘history’ has been restricted to the European perspective. It is on that basis that the story of the Americas generally is seen in terms of Aztecs (in Central America) and Incas (South America). But those two great empires were in truth merely the contemporary societies that the Spanish encountered when they first set foot on the continent in the 16th century. The story of South American civilization - and Peru in particular - goes way back beyond the admittedly sensational story of European colonization.

Recent archaeological work by the Andean Centre for archaeological research, CIARA, has found that the Caral ‘empire’ across the northern territory of present day Peru was a continuous civilization spanning 1,200 years and dating from a point approximately 4,500 years ago. From a western perspective, a striking feature of the archaeological finds from the Caral is the complete absence of any military remains. There is no evidence whatsoever of any form of organised combat. It seems the very nature of civilization in this - one of the oldest collective settlements in mankind’s history - was considerably more peaceful than has been the case anywhere else ever since. What the secret of that peaceful way of life was remains a mystery. Clearly, there is much that we could learn from Peru’s ancient inhabitants.

 

Gap Year Peru

Language

There are remnants of the ancient civilizations that still have a contemporary resonance. Not the least of those is the language status of Peru which is formally multi-lingual. The ubiquitous Spanish of South America is used interchangeably with the indigenous Quechua and Aymara - tongues that have their roots in those ancient civilizations. That happy plurality is perhaps a distant echo of the political tolerance of the Caral. It is also a useful reminder that history is not something that simply happened in the past - it is something that also flows through the living present, even if we don’t always appreciate it.

For example, more easily traced than the origins of different languages is the western world’s love of poker which can be definitively traced to a game that originated in Peru. The game of Perudo was - so the legend goes - passed on to the Spanish conquistadores by the unfortunate Inca ruler Atahualpa whilst he was held captive by them.

 

Food

Even more earthily, the agricultural roots of civilization may be seen in the claim that such modern day staples as the potato and the tomato originated from - and were first cultivated in - the high plains of Peru. Likewise, quinoa is a traditional Peruvian staple. The modern Peruvian speciality of Cuy - or Guinnea pig as it known in English - may seem oddly exotic to Western tastes today, but it is only a few hundred years ago that the same would have been true of the humble potato. History has a way of not going away.

 

Spectacular Sites for All Budgets 

The tourist hot spots of Peru include Machu Picchu and the Sacred Trail which are undeniably spectacular but there is much to see and experience away from those often overburdened World Heritage Sites. The sites of Tucume, El Brujo, Sacsayhuaman, Tambo Machay, and Puca Pucara are all spectacular in their different ways. For example, Tucume is at the heart of the Lambayeque Valley which runs alongside Peru’s Northern shoreline. The area is rich in historical relics - the valley is home to over 250 ancient pyramids as well as an intricate network of ancient waterways - many of them as yet unexcavated. The Inca site of Moray and the pre-Incan remains at Chan Chan and Pachacamac are also, in their different ways, every bit as compelling. Whether you are backpacking through Peru or traveling in luxury, there is no shortage of spectacular sites in Peru.

 

Wildlife - Another Natural Wonder

Aside from its inescapable historical attractions Peru offers a rare luxury of flora and fauna. Birdwatchers will delight in the presence of more than 1,700 different species - more than any other country on earth. The rainforest of the Eastern Andes in both the high forests and those of the lower Amazon region constitute ecological conditions that are unique in their conjoined character and abundant in the variety of wildlife they support. The forests are home to 34 species of primate, 361 different mammals, 297 species of reptile and 251 amphibians. It is a uniquely diverse natural habitat.

But the rainforest is not merely home to exotic wildlife. Amongst the 2.5 million square miles that the rainforest covers - extending well beyond the borders of Peru itself - it is estimated that there remain human societies and cultures that have never experienced any formal contact with the modern world. From one perspective it is tempting to say that these remnants of the Bronze Age represent a living window into our distant past. A more jaundiced view might suggest they also offer a disturbing means by which to gauge our own world view - as described in Daniel Everett’s best-selling “Don’t Sleep There are Snakes”. Peru is unquestionably a destination that makes you think. 

 

 

      

 

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