Peru - Machu Picchu and much much more
Peru - Machu Picchu and much much more
Peru is the emblem of South America, offering so many incredible life-changing experiences to all kinds of travellers and visitors. Its #1 attraction, Machu Picchu is arguably the world’s most sought for destination. A heaven on earth type place, surrounded by cloud shattered mountains; there really is no place like it. While many of you may come to Peru for Machu Picchu, the country has so much more on offer. The Inca’s were some of the greatest, most efficient and intriguing civilisations ever to have existed in the record books. If we are talking about history, just look at how god-like the Nasca Lines are, almost alien like. You’ve got real life Oasis stuck in the middle of deserts, centuries old cities like Cusco and you’ve even got that Paramount 69 Mountain that we’ve all seen on TV, located in Arequipa.
Let’s begin with the postcard of South America, Machu Picchu. One of the Seven Wonders of the World, Machu Picchu is definitely not to be missed whilst in Peru. We’ve all seen the image of these beautiful ruins and we can’t complain- it is absolutely picturesque. Yet, despite its popularity, we assure you there is no image that does this place justice. Reaching to the top of all those steps, you will find yourself a little slice of heaven. Make sure all your senses are switched on - see, feel and hear its presence. Machu Picchu is a place filled of awe.
So why is Machu Picchu there? It was originally built for a 15th century emperor, but abandoned after 100 years. Even when the Spanish came to Peru they knew nothing about it, only that it was locally known until American Henry Bingham re-discovered it in 1911. Typical of the Incan industry, it’s constructed with dry stonewalls.
The Classic Inca Trail
As for now and what goes on today, visiting Machu Picchu can be done in numerous ways. Many tour companies provide different tours ranging from 1 – 5 days, but really the way to do it is the Classic Inca Trail. Due to government restrictions, only 500 hikers can do this per day in an effort to conserve the trail and area. Typically this trail gets booked up quickly so you have to book in advance.
It takes between 4-5 days but we have to say, what an experience you will be in for. The trail itself is a cross of three different hikes and stretches over a distance of eighty kilometres to which you’ll hike to altitude levels of over 4,000ft. During the hike, you’ll pass the several ruins and Incan sites such as Pattallqta, Tampu Runkuruqay, and Phuyupatamarka. All are fascinating and show the sophistication in past Inca civilisations. Not only that you’ll witness extensive agricultural terraces, pass through cloud forests and through tunnels before reaching the sun gate at Machu Pichu – all are part of the Classic Inca Trail.
More of Peru
Lets face it we all go to Peru for Machu Picchu, but do not be fooled to think that’s all there is. Peru has a bunch of other exciting sights and activities to do.
It’s Not A Mirage
Fancy visiting a real life Oasis in the middle of a dry desert? Well, Huacachina not only has that but you can also be more adventurous and sand board down its outspread sand dunes.
If you’re still into the mysterious side of Peru’s past then the Nasca Lines are worth seeing. Their whole existence comes across as almost alien like. These huge ‘drawings’ in the earth for only a god to see are now visible to us due to air transport. The Nasca Lines are often overshadowed by Machu Picchu but are some of the most intriguing sights to see. Each drawing or symbol is of different animals and creatures, which we find quite extraordinary and we’re sure you will too.
Ever watched a Paramount film? Well that snow capped mountain that appears in the background, that’s actually in Peru. Head over and take the Laguna 69 hike close Huaraz to witness mind-boggling scenery.
Cuzco itself has regularly been voted a travellers favourite South American City and we can see why. A perfect mix of traditional Inca culture yet with a tiny touch of modern influence allows this place to be a comfortable, fascinating and quirky City for any traveller. Just look at the views and you’ll know what we mean!
Beaches, Surfing and Parties
Known for its great waves, outstretched beach and daily parties, Mancora is situated in Peru’s north, fairly close to the Ecuador boarder. It’s quite common for travellers to spend quite a bit of time here, especially if you are surf mad. Loki Hostel is a huge complex that practically a hotel, with a pool, local and western food, offers tours and is situated right next to the beach and other bars. Head there if you want to get down!
Going to Peru wouldn’t be the same without visiting its capital, Lima. The largest City in Peru has its old colonial influence preserved but with a modern City twist. Known for its speciality in local food that derives from the coast, mountain area and the Peruvian Amazon. The seafood here gets the most plaudits with ceviche especially being rich in taste.
Giant Condors and Canyons
Colca Canyon is in Peru’s Southwest near Arequipa and a great spot for keen hikers. With the slow town of Cabanconde being the most popular town for travellers to base themselves, Colca Canyon is the world’s deepest canyon at over 4,000m! If that isn’t enough watching giant condors in ‘Cruz Del Condor’ is quite incredible and worth the visit alone.
Like what you see? Take a look HERE at all our Peru adventure tours