Peru highlights

A Mountain of Peru Highlights to Choose From!

One of the most diverse and exciting countries in South America, Peru offers opportunities to explore the Andes, Amazon Rainforest, desert and coast. So with your wish list in hand, be tempted with an array of sights not to miss when experiencing the range of spectacular scenery, gastronomical delights, fiestas, archaeological wonders, adrenalin rushes, the richness of the Peruvian people and much more!

Click on the locations below to find out more and start planning your Peruvian adventure

Alluring Amazon

Wildlife: The Amazon in Peru is home to a diversity of life that is unequalled anywhere on Earth and it is this that makes it a paradise for nature lovers. It is home to 10,000,000 living species, including 2000 species of fish, 1,200 birds and nearly 300 mammals.

Rainforest canopy walkway: Peru's jungle is one of the richest in the world and can be seen at its best from the Amazon's longest tree-top canopy walkway, reaching 35m above the ground near to Río Napo, Iquitos.

River cruises: The mighty Amazon River has been confirmed to be the longest river in the world stretching 6,762 km. It contains a fifth of the earth's freshwater beginning in the Peruvian Andes as a gentle stream. Amazon River cruises in Peru are a great way to explore the region and observe the thousands of species of wildlife.

Nature Reserves: Pacaya-Samiria is a jungle hotspot for nature tourism located in the northern Amazon. It is also the largest and least visited reserve being so remote with endless waterways and wetlands accessible by riverboat to make it a jungle hotspot for nature tourism. In the southern Amazon visitors will find the Manu Biosphere Reserve, with pristine rainforests and untouched jungle life, and the Tambopata-Candamo Reserve, rich in flora and fauna with a world record of diversity of bird, butterfly, dragonfly, beetle and fly taxa.

Northern Highlights

Trujillo: Peru's third largest city charms visitors with its colonial architecture and surprisingly cosmopolitan atmosphere. Whilst visiting this city guests have access to some northern archaeological wonders such as the El Brujo Archeological Complex with the Adobe Pyra, a most extraordinary sight. Also the Huaca del Sol and Huaca de la Luna (Temple of the Sun and Moon) are two of the most impressive Peruvian pyras, built for ceremonial purposes by the Moche around 500 AD. Both temples are easily accessible from Trujillo, but only Huaca de la Luna is open to visitors.

Kuelap: Massive, ruined citadel of Kuelap is one of the most overwhelming archaeological sites where the Amazon meets the Andes. This stone built fortress proudly stands at an altitude of 3000 meters above sea level. The impressive structure is said to be the Machu Picchu of the North. Built by the Chachapoyas, known as the Cloud People, who inhabited the area from 700 AD to 1470 AD, it demonstrates their engineering talents.

Túcume: Also known as the Valley of the Pyras, you can't miss the sight of over twenty pyras built by pre-Inca civilisations surrounding a sacred mountain of El Purgatorio.

In and around the Coast

Ballestas Islands: Home to a wide variety of birds and sea lions which can be easily seen from a motorboat, a trip around the Ballestas Islands from Paracas is extremely popular.

Máncora: One of Peru's most popular surfer hangouts with the largest left hand point break in the world and gorgeous beaches with a thriving nightlife. Learning to surf in Peru is a must as is watching the pros show off their skills along the coastline.

Lima Coast: The beaches in Lima offer world class surf and boast the biggest wave in the whole of South America at Pico Alto.

Chicama: As well as boasting the largest left hand point break in the world, Peru features the largest left-hand waves in the world in Chicama (La Libertad). With their tube-like shape, they are known as “chicamera waves” and are over four kilometres long.

Central Wonders

Cordillera Blanca: Perfect for adrenalin junkies and outdoor enthusiasts, the glacial scenery of the Cordillera Blanca mountain range is among the finest and most accessible on the planet with snow-capped peaks that rise higher than 5700 meters above sea level.

Lima: The traditional City of Kings and the capital of the country. It has been declared as the ‘The Gastronomic Capital of America' with excellent restaurants serving national and international cuisine.

Southern Highlights

Sacsayhuamán: The zigzagging megalithic defensive walls of an Inca temple-fortress are home to the Inti Raymi annual sun festival. Every year on the 24th June Cusco celebrates the most famous festival in the Inca calendar, Inti Raymi – Festival of the Sun. The winter solstice and local harvest are the driving force behind the celebration in honour of Wiracocha, the God Creator. It is now the second largest festival in Latin America with over 200,000 people visiting Cusco to join the merriment, parties and fireworks.

Mysterious Nasca Lines: Take a helicopter tour to get the full impact of these intricate mysterious symbols etched into the deserts of southern Peru. There are about 300 hundred figures made of straight lines, geometric shapes and pictures of animals which are only clearly visible from the air.

Colca Canyon: Twice the size of the Grand Canyon, the enormous Colca is one of the deepest canyons in the world - 3,400 meters (11,154 ft). This enormous canyon located in the Arequipa region is formed by the Colca River and its length is covered in hundreds of pre-Hispanic terraces, proof of the high degree of farming expertise of ancient Peruvians. The highest point is the look out point of Cruz del Condor, which offers the unforgettable experience of seeing condors in their natural habitat. The Colca Canyon can be visited all year-round, although the best time of year for trekking and river activities is between April and November.

Machu Picchu and the Inca Trail: After conquering the arduous Inca Trail on foot, the perfect reward is the magical sight of first light touching the ancient stone ruins of Machu Picchu. The cloud and mists which often cloak the valley add a mystical, otherworldly feel to proceedings. Its mysterious temples and palaces among hundreds of terraces never fail to impress. Voted one of the New Seven Wonders of the World in 2007 Machu Picchu is the most visited site in Peru.

Uros Islands: One of Lake Titicaca's many treasures, these man-made floating villages have existed in the lake since Inca times and now support whole Quechua communities. These tiny islands made purely of reeds can be visited with guided tours arranged from Puno, Peru's main town on the shores of Lake Titicaca.