One of the world’s most beloved hiking trails just so happens to end at one of the most famous wonders of the world. While many tourists take the train to the ancient Inca citadel Machu Picchu, it’s the 4-5 day hike along the world-renowned Inca Trail through the Andes that allows you to really embrace the region and its culture.
The Inca Trail’s roughly 26-mile-long trek from Cusco to Machu Picchu will introduce you to a range of different natural landscapes including clouds forests and alpine tundra, passing numerous ancient Inca ruins along the way.
Here are a few of the highlights along your journey.
Adventure travelers looking for incredible mountain treks will find a wealth of truly off the beaten path locations scattered around Peru.
While Machu Picchu and the Inca Trail receive the majority of attention, Peru offers a number of alternatives if you’re hoping to feel less like a tourist and more like a true explorer.
The Andes form the longest continental mountain range in the world, offering treks of all lengths and degrees of difficulties. Peru is lucky enough to be home to many of the most notable mountain treks along the range, many of which manage to remain under the radar from mass tourism.
There is no denying that Machu Picchu is an incredible Wonder of the World, but those looking for something more unique and less restrictive may want to look into some of Peru’s other incredible mountain treks.
The following treks will not only provide you with equally as impressive scenery, but will also leave you with stories very few other travelers have experienced.
When it comes to travel, preparation is not always limited to the practical side of things; booking your hotels, making sure your passport is valid, and deciding what to bring.
Wherever we go in the world, we find people doing things differently, so it’s important to prepare for cultural differences too (this is of course part of the joy of travel; after all, if we were all the same, the world would make for a very boring place!).
We can’t always avoid cultural slip-ups, and keeping your sense of humor when you travel will help you no end. Yet, taking a few minutes to learn about the culture and norms will help you avoid the most embarrassing scenarios.
The following are cultural dos and don’ts for when you travel to Peru. Follow these simple guidelines, and you will set yourself up to have a more meaningful and engaged trip.
After all, not offending everyone unintentionally at every turn can only be a good thing!
Jungles may make up only six percent of the earth’s land surface, but they produce nearly half of all the oxygen we require to survive. And, home to some of the world’s most iconic and endangered wildlife, jungle destinations offer a travel experience unlike any other.
Jungle trekking is a way to transport yourself back to a time of exploration as you come face to face with landscapes and animals few people have seen with their own eyes; from the lush humid jungles of the Amazon, to spotting tigers and sloth bears in the national parks of Nepal.
On June 5th, over 140 nations will participate in celebrating World Environment Day. And what better way to celebrate than by listing the countries that are home some of the world’s greatest rainforests.
We can only hope that through continued conservation efforts and sustainable eco-tourism, we can preserve these great jungles for generations to come. You might think that jungle trekking sounds primitive, but you might be surprised to find that the best hotels for jungle trekking are as much luxury as they are eco-lodge!
Having decreased by nearly 30% over the past decades, the Bald Uakari has been sadly downgraded to vulnerable from near threatened due to the usual causes of rainforest animal declines, habitat destruction, hunting, and the pet trade.
It’s rare these days to find a destination where you can go from a downtown setting to literally being lost in the jungle in a matter of hours. But Peru does just that; a country which blends a diverse mixture of cultures, from the high plateaus of the Andes to the jungles surrounding the Amazon. And it’s wildlife is as colorful and vibrant as its cities and culture too.
But for all its diversity, this means attempting to tackle Peru on your own can be daunting. With so much to see and do you run the risk of missing a lot of what the country has to offer should you choose to do it alone.
So to really dive in, and make sure you don’t miss a thing, we recommend booking a tour. And the great thing for anyone wishing to travel this year, is that Luxury Escapes is offering 20% off the tour we chose.
Peru is an outdoor adventurer’s paradise with trails winding through an array of land formations, rivers, jungles and climates. If you are seeking a vacation far from the norm and have a hankering for history and culture with a dash of adventure thrown in, then the hiking treks of Peru are perfect for you.
Most trails will offer a spectacular close-up view of the soaring Andes Mountains, and there are a variety of hiking trails which cater to all, from novices to skilled trekkers.
Before embarking on any trek, make sure you have the best hiking gear you can afford. For example, you’ll need to organize hiking boots, backpacks, tents and look at clothing options such as compression tights for women and men. Once you have your gear ready, take your pick from these top five hiking trails in Peru:
The flight into La Paz, Bolivia was an incredibly scenic one. Our commercial airliner was soaring through snow-capped Andean peaks. Though it wasn’t by any means that the pilot was flying low, rather that these mountains stood at dizzying heights. And the same can be said about the city of La Paz.
Compelled to experience the city’s unique cultural energy and street life, we set out on mission to explore on our first day. Though it only took 10 minutes of a leisurely stroll before we turned away. While relatively fit and quite used to hiking and climbing throughout many climates and conditions, a casual city stroll had left our lungs gasping for oxygen we couldn’t have.
If there is one thing we learnt from our time in La Paz, it was that any destination at this altitude is to be savored over time, as it’s important to properly to acclimatize. When you’re traveling this high, your lungs need time to adjust to reduced oxygen and breathing thinner air. Otherwise altitude sickness kicks in.
If you know that you are going to be traveling to high altitudes, follow a few simple steps to prevent altitude sickness.
Incan ruins, Andean peaks, and glaciers which will take your breath away. Colonial towns, white-sand beaches, and trails which lead directly under awe inspiring falls. From the Galapagos to the Amazon, and the dramatic landscapes in Tierra del Fuego, South America is just full of incredible natural wonders and bucket list destinations which set the stage for incredible adventures.
Travelers who skip South America are truly missing out – there is more culture, passion and history here than any other place in the world, and a more diverse range of natural wonders and landscapes than found in any other continent on earth.
You haven’t known adventure until you have zipped down a 300 foot sand dune headfirst, screaming for your life, eating sand the entire way down. You haven’t known adventure until you have strapped yourself into a sand buggy and flown through “Everest of the Desert” at high speeds, clutching your seatbelt until your knuckles turn white. You haven’t known adventure until you have visited Huacachina, Peru.
The sand buggy tour was the most thrilling and exhilarating experience of our lives. We strapped ourselves into the 12 seater dune buggy as our driver flew over towering sand dunes at high speeds. We gripped the seats in front of us for dear life as he floored the gas and took dunes 90 degree angles. We whizzed through the desert, screaming at the top of our lungs as we blew through the most spectacular desert scenery you could ever hope to see in your life.
At 4pm we arrived at the Desert Nights Hostel, and it wasn’t long before we realized this wasn’t going to be a smooth ride! For $22 USD each, we had honestly expected a fairly tame ride through the desert, however we quickly realized that this was going to be an extreme thrill ride, not for the light of heart!
At Doubletree by Hilton, they know the little things mean everything when it comes to a great travel experience. That’s why they have welcomed guests with a warm chocolate chip cookie for more than 25 years. The Doubletree gesture of a warm chocolate chip cookie on check-in is a symbol of the little, bright moments in life. No matter where you are or how you’re feeling, a cookie has the power to make you smile.
May 15 2014 was National Chocolate Chip Cookie Day, and in spreading the Cookie Care, Doubletree hotels worldwide took to the streets to hand out their signature chocolate chip cookies. Anyone who walked into one of the brand’s 370 hotels worldwide was treated to an iconic cookie, and surprise cookie giveaways were held all over the world.
Lima is the culinary capital of the world, and there’s no better way to enjoy mouthwatering local Peruvian cuisine than taking in dinner with a show!
The Junius Restaurant at the El Pardo Doubletree by Hilton Hotel combines delicious cuisine with a spectacular, colorful, and live folklore show. The show features typical dance from every region in Peru, including the most impressive dances of the Peruvian Andes.
A fully interactive show which is lively, playful and upbeat, the most entertaining spectacle was Danza De Las Tijeras.
South America is a diverse continent comprising of some truly phenomenal cultures, each with their own authentic, local cuisine. And from Guinea Pig in Peru to Frogs Legs in Bolivia, it’s the food that travelers tend to remember the most during their time here.
There are many books to learn about traditional food of South America, though to start you off, here are the single foods you must try while traveling through South America!