Peru

All Destinations

Peru

Most visitors to Peru will almost immediately find themselves drawn in to the story behind the Inca Empire. This enigmatic tribe has left on earth an imprint of how truly extraordinary the human race can be but left so many questions unanswered. It is no wonder that some of the world’s greatest adventurers who stumbled into Machu Picchu went on to dedicate the rest of their lives to researching questions unanswered.

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While a visit to Machu Picchu is a must on any first-time visit to Peru, there are other stunning regions that should also be considered. The drive from Arequipa to the Colca Canyon, for example takes you through the largest circle of volcanoes in South America and the scenery is utterly mesmerising. The canyon is home to thriving colonies of wild condor and it is quite a sight to see these birds with an average wingspan of ten feet catching thermal winds over the canyon below – for a brief moment, their vast shadows blocking the light on the cliffs beyond.

Nature lovers will delight in a visit to Peru’s portion of the Amazon River. There are some fantastic jungle lodges and luxury boats to choose from and plenty of exciting ways to get into the thick of the reserve without sacrificing on comfort at the end of the day.

The Sacred Valley is generally the precursor to the lofty peaks of Machu Picchu and we suggest guests come here to acclimatise to the altitude and soak up the stunning scenery. We work with some excellent guides in the area who can take you off the beaten track on foot, 4×4 or with an exhilarating mountain bike (no previous experience of tearing down a mountain side on two wheels necessary).

Cuzco is a thriving, bustling town with some fantastic hotels and world-class restaurants. Foodies will be in heaven and booking tables ahead at the best restaurants is essential.

Those with time and a sense of adventure will enjoy a visit to Lake Titikaka – the hightest navigable lake in the world. These peaceful waters are a hotspot for birdlife and in the altiplano planes beyond are hidden temples, market towns and archaeological wonders waiting to be discovered.

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Quick Facts

Capital
Lima

Population
32 million

Area
1.28 million sq km (496,225 sq miles)

Major Languages
Spanish, Quechua, Aymara

Major religion
Christianity

Monetary Unit
Nuevo Sol

Flight time from London
16.5 hours via Madrid

Time Difference
GMT -5

When to go
Peru can be visited at any time of the year but the dry season runs between May and October. Those hoping to catch a crisp, clear and fog-free day at Machu Picchu are advised to travel in this window of time but, as ever, it can never be guaranteed.

In the Amazon the ‘low water’ season takes place between June and October when skies tend to be clearer. The ‘high water’ season between November and April can be wetter but both seasons come with fantastic reasons to visit the rainforest.

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Highlights

The Sacred Valley

Machu Picchu deserves its global fame but there are hundreds of other impressive archaeological sites in Peru that can be overlooked. Pisac, Moray, Ollantaytambo and Chinchero are but a few that are tucked into the peaceful landscape of the Valle Sagrado (Sacred Valley). Quiet, traffic-free paths make excellent tracks for cycling between local market towns and ancient citadels.

The Urubamba River and its tributaries provide a fantastic way to explore by water either tackling turbulent water on a raft as it churns through narrow gorges or a gentle kayak ride. These days out work particularly well for families with teens and those looking for a really wild experience can opt for a night or two camping on the edge of the water.

Machu Picchu

A visit to Machu Picchu is a humbling experience. The site is a reminder of how truly extraordinary the human race can be in the absence of all the comforts and technology we have come to rely on in our modern world.

It is impossible to visit Machu Picchu and have it all to yourself but there are clever ways of getting there when crowds are at a minimum. This is where local knowledge is key and we always recommend that visitors to this beautiful part of the world explore in the hands of a private guide. They know the hidden corners and ancient sites better than anyone as well as an authentic sense of culture and heritage that allows you to get under the skin of Peru.

The Amazon

The Amazon River, the largest in the world by volume, passes through Brazil, Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, Guyana and Suriname. While the exact source of this mighty river remains a mystery, there is no doubt that it originates in the Peruvian mountains. By the time it reaches the lowland rainforests its tributaries such as the Tambopata River and the Madre Dios River are dripping with wildlife.

The infrastructure for visiting the Amazonian Rainforests of Peru is excellent with anything from luxury boats to land-based lodges to choose from. This allows guests to access more remote regions of this pristine rainforest but still return each day to a stylish room, warm and friendly service and a delicious meal. This part of the world can be visited year-round and the seasons are generally split into ‘high water’ and ‘low water’.

Whether you are staying on land or exploring from a small cruise vessel, excursions are often done in smaller skiffs, which glide silently through a network of river channels and tributaries. Expert guides, who know these complex waterways better than anyone navigate their way deep into the rainforest pointing out the smallest of creatures that would be hidden to most human eyes.

The Sacred Valley

Machu Picchu deserves its global fame but there are hundreds of other impressive archaeological sites in Peru that can be overlooked. Pisac, Moray, Ollantaytambo and Chinchero are but a few that are tucked into the peaceful landscape of the Valle Sagrado (Sacred Valley). Quiet, traffic-free paths make excellent tracks for cycling between local market towns and ancient citadels.

The Urubamba River and its tributaries provide a fantastic way to explore by water either tackling turbulent water on a raft as it churns through narrow gorges or a gentle kayak ride. These days out work particularly well for families with teens and those looking for a really wild experience can opt for a night or two camping on the edge of the water.

Machu Picchu

A visit to Machu Picchu is a humbling experience. The site is a reminder of how truly extraordinary the human race can be in the absence of all the comforts and technology we have come to rely on in our modern world.

It is impossible to visit Machu Picchu and have it all to yourself but there are clever ways of getting there when crowds are at a minimum. This is where local knowledge is key and we always recommend that visitors to this beautiful part of the world explore in the hands of a private guide. They know the hidden corners and ancient sites better than anyone as well as an authentic sense of culture and heritage that allows you to get under the skin of Peru.

The Amazon

The Amazon River, the largest in the world by volume, passes through Brazil, Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, Guyana and Suriname. While the exact source of this mighty river remains a mystery, there is no doubt that it originates in the Peruvian mountains. By the time it reaches the lowland rainforests its tributaries such as the Tambopata River and the Madre Dios River are dripping with wildlife.

The infrastructure for visiting the Amazonian Rainforests of Peru is excellent with anything from luxury boats to land-based lodges to choose from. This allows guests to access more remote regions of this pristine rainforest but still return each day to a stylish room, warm and friendly service and a delicious meal. This part of the world can be visited year-round and the seasons are generally split into ‘high water’ and ‘low water’.

Whether you are staying on land or exploring from a small cruise vessel, excursions are often done in smaller skiffs, which glide silently through a network of river channels and tributaries. Expert guides, who know these complex waterways better than anyone navigate their way deep into the rainforest pointing out the smallest of creatures that would be hidden to most human eyes.

Where to stay

These are just a selection of the properties we can personally recommend. Please get in touch to hear more about our full portfolio.

Aria Amazon

With a 1:1 crew-to-guest ratio, custom designed speedboats, kayaks and even bicycles. The team behind the Aria Amazon will ensure guests receive the very best Amazonian experience each day. Back on board, floor to ceiling windows in every cabin allow and a large sundeck allow the world to slip by from the total comfort of a luxury vessel.

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Inkaterra La Casona

La Casona blazed the trail for stylish, boutique properties in Cusco and it remains up there with the top options in the city. This charming hotel has been converted from a 16th Century manor house and the design never forgets its heritage and sense of history. This is a perfect base from which to explore one of South America’s finest Colonial cities.

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Delphin

The Delphin fleet delivers on every front from exceptional service and stylish accommodation to extremely knowledgeable and passionate guides, who have designed a range of wonderful ways to experience the Amazon.

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Hotel B, Lima

This restored mansion is Lima’s only Relais & Chateaux property and is bursting with bundles of charm to reflect is heritage as the former summer home of a wealthy Peruvian family. This is one of the city’s first truly stylish boutique hotels and a fantastic option for those stopping over in Lima.

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Inkaterra Reserva Amazonica

Inkaterra Reserva Amazonica can be found hidden deep in one of Peru’s largest reserves and perched on the banks of the Madre de Dios River. A bird-lover’s paradise with over 540 bird species that have been spotted in the Tambopata Reserve alone. Boat rides and rainforest trails are all part of the experience and taken in the expert hands of passionate and knowledgeable guides, whose trained eyes can spot the smallest of creatures attempting to hide in the foliage.

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Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel

Inkaterra pride themselves on designing warm and intimate properties that reflect local traditions. Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel is no exception. Walking into this leafy oasis guests are welcomed by friendly staff and a relaxed atmosphere that is immediately inviting.

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Sol y Luna

Tucked into the heart of the Sacred Valley , the Sol y Luna is surrounded by lush gardens and far-reaching views of the Andes Mountains beyond. This warm and friendly lodge never loses a sense of place and it has become integral to the local community.

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Get in touch with us now to start planning your journey

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