Top Ten Places for Sightseeing in Peru
People often overlook the great spots for sightseeing in Peru. Peru, however, has a lot to offer for those who care to check it out.
Here is a list of the some of the best spots to take in this great South American location:
- Lima: The capitol city is one of the great destinations for sightseeing in Peru not only because of its history, metropolitan amenities, and ease of access, but also because of its great cuisine. You may be surprised to learn that it is one of the best places for Chinese cuisine—not because you can find authentic dishes here, but because the lack of access to the ordinary ingredients needed for Chinese cuisine forces local chefs to substitute fresh Peruvian ingredients, thus creating dishes that can be found nowhere else in the world. It is a gastronomical Never Never Land worth the trip in itself.
- Manu National Park: Although most people associate the Amazon with Brazil, the greatest rainforest on Earth stretches all the way into the other countries of northern South America and one of the best places to access its eastern portions are from Peru. Manu National Park is Peru’s largest national park and has one of the most diverse ranges of species in the world. Access to the park is limited to help keep the area safe from human intervention but some tours do go through part of the park.
- Machu Picchu: The most famous tourist attractions for sightseeing in Peru is the Incan ruins high in the Andes. The terraced city is fascinating for its location as well as for the amazing advances of the once vibrant civilization.
- Chan Chan: The lesser known ruins of Chan Chan are in distinct relief to those at Machu Picchu, being in the inland deserts and devoid of greenery of any kind. The ancient city is well off the beaten path, but fascinating for a day trip.
Rio Abiseo National Park: Part high mountain rain forest, part ancient ruin; the park is home to a plethora of indigenous species including the Phoenix-like Yellow-tailed Woolly Monkey that was just a few years ago thought to have gone the way of the Dodo.
- Huaraz: With a moniker like the “Switzerland of the South,” the quaint city of Hauraz is the destination for expert climbers, the snow capped peaks offering breath taking views and challenging ascents. The city itself has a great small town feel, filling with farmer’s markets where visitors can find authentic local jewelry made from ores from the nearby mines.
- Culca Canyon: Boasting twice the depth of the Grand Canyon, the Culca Canyon is an anomaly in a country known for its Andes. It is one of the lesser known places for sightseeing in Peru and is where you can catch a glimpse of the Andean condor—an amazing creature. There are also hot springs in these high altitudes.
- Araquipa: In the far south and the second largest city in the Peru, Araquipa is known for it colonial architecture and for its authentic Peruvian cuisine. Despite being one of the most culturally diverse areas in Peru, the city has remained relatively untouched by the Asian cultural influences that have put their signature on the capitol. Thus, it is here that purists come to experience the “true cuisine of Peru.”
- Punta Sal: Always sunny, Punta Sal is just one of the many beaches in Peru. Every year, it seems like there is a new hotspot as word gets out about a particular beach and tourists overrun it, Peruvians find a new hotspot to call their own, only to have it overrun by the new seasons tourists.
- The Incan Trail: For those that love a good nature hike, the Incan trail snakes from Machu Picchu to Cusca, containing everything from amazing views to the kind of rope bridges you would expect in Romancing the Stone. A lovely adventure for those that love to hoof it.