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Best Touristic Places to Visit in Peru

Here at Peru Experience, we know that you’re looking for the best places to travel in Peru, in order to make this easier for you we compiled a list of the top places to visit in Peru. In the article, you will find Ten of the most important and popular destinations in Peru. There are many wonderful places in Peru, Machu Picchu, Colca Canyon and Lake Titicaca begin three of them. Check out this article and discover more exciting places to visit.

Lima

Named a World Heritage Site, Lima is the capital of Peru, and known as the “City of Kings”. Here one can take a city tour and be able to enjoy beautiful churches, mansions, balconies and other constructions built during the viceroyalty era.  Top attractions to see in the capital include the Cathedral of Lima and catacombs, the Plaza de Armas, Santo Domingo Convent, the Government Palace and much more.

Heading outside of the capital to the district of Pueblo Libre is where you will find the 18th-century mansion that is home to the Museo Larco, that hold’s a collection og Pre-Colombian gold, silver and erotic pottery. Continuing to Miraflores tourists can visit the archaeological complex Huaca Pucllana and even dine looking right at the complex. Miraflores is also popular for its Parque Kennedy, paragliding and Parque de Amor.

Nazca Lines

Just 6 hrs. from Lima is the where you can find the mysterious Nazca Lines. For centuries scientists have been drawn to these lines that can be seen by plane. We still don’t know much about the lines, but we do know that they depict coastal, highland and jungle fauna. Some of the lines that one can see include the hummingbird, monkey, spider and geometric figures such as lines, trapeze and triangles.

Cusco

The beautiful city of Cusco can be found at 11,000 ft above sea level and was once the center of the Inca Empire. When walking around you can enjoy the Plaza de Armas and its many restaurants, bars and stores surrounding the old city. In Cusco taking a city tour is highly recommended, it includes stops to archaeological sites such as Sacsayhuaman, Puka Pukara, and Q’enko.

The Sacred Valley & Machu Picchu

Further past Cusco you can find the Sacred Valley. This beautiful Valley is home to many archaeological sites, such as the circular terraces of Moray, salt flats of Maras, the Ollantaytambo ruins, and the Pisac ruins that is home to the largest complex of terraces. There are many other sites to see in the Sacred Valley, but the most popular of all is the “Lost City of the Incas”, Machu Picchu. Part of the New Seven Wonders of the World Machu Picchu is which means “Old Mountain”, is considered a World Heritage by UNESCO and is the most visited archaeological sites in Peru.

Arequipa

The beautiful “White City” also known as Arequipa is full of rich history and beautiful monuments for travelers to visit. Arequipa was given the name “White City” because its surrounding builds are made of sillar (white volcanic rock). One can start their visit by heading to the Museum of Andean Sanctuaries where the famous mummy Juanita can be found. Juanita, 14-years old at the time of her death was the daughter of an Inca dignitary she was mummified on the snowcapped mountain of Ampato Mount in 1995. After spending time with Juanita a visit to the Yanahuara viewpoint is a must for all travelers to get a glipse of the city. Another famous Arequipa stop is the Santa Catalina Monastery, the colorful monastery was built in 1579 and has a small religious citadel that is still used to this day.

Colca Canyon

Head away from Arequipa through the National Reserve where you can see vicuñas in their natural habitat before arriving to one of the deepest canyons in the world, the Colca Canyon, that is home to the majestic Andean Condor with a wingspan of over 3 meters that can be seen from the Cruz del Condor lookout point. One can also enjoy the beautiful green valley surrounding the canyon that is home to several villages and agricultural terraces.

Lake Titicaca

After visiting Cusco and the famous Machu Picchu, most tourists opt to continue their journey towards Puno, which is where you can find the world’s highest navigable body of water, Lake Titicaca. On the way to Puno you can take the more scenic route where along the way you will visit places such as Andahuaylillas, the Sistine Chapel of the Americas, the great and mighty Temple of Wiracocha (Raqchi), La Raya Pass which is the road limit between Cusco and Puno where you will also have the chance to stop and see the beautiful view of the Chimboya Glacier, and lastly the Lithic Museum of Pukará.

When you finally reach the city of Puno visiting the floating islands of Uros will be your first stop on the lake, after this you can choose to continue to Amantaní island where you can spend the night with a local family and head to Taquile, a fascinating island where the male population wear very colorful traditional self-made dresses. Or you can choose to go to Taquile the same day as Uros and not stay over with a local family.

Chiclayo

This city is the fourth largest in Peru and is also known as the “City of Friendship”. Chiclayo is famous for it’s so called Witch Doctor’s Market, but tourists generally stop by Chiclayo to be able to visit some of the archaeological sites such as the royal tombs of local kings and shamans from the Moche Culture. The museum Tumbas Reales located in the city of Lambayeque which showcase human and animal funeral offerings. Another area worth visiting while around the area is the Complex of Tucume. This complex contains more than 26 pyramid structures and was a religious center for more than 300 years. Even today shamans use the area to perform ceremonies because the area is thought to contain a large amount of energy.

Iquitos

Located in the heart of the Amazon, Iquitos is the largest city in the jungle and is home to many species of animals. Something unique about Iquitos, the capital of Loreto is that there is no way of accessing the city by road, the only way to reach it is by plane or boat. Iquitos has many attractions and cultural activities one can be a part of. Journey down the Belen River where you can see floating homes that eventually rise and sink with the flow of the river. When you venture further down the river and more into the jungle you will be amazed at all the flora and fauna surrounding you, you can spend the day visiting the Animal Rescue Center where you can visit manatees, giant otters, turtles, gators and other species. While on the Amazon River you might also be lucky enough to see the river’s pink dolphins that are an amazing sight to see. Visiting Iquitos also allows you to visit native communities and enter their world where you can enjoy typical dances and personally get to know the community.

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