Peru is a tourist destination that pleads to be toured. In this expansive and storied land, colonial, ancient and contemporary traditions fuse for a memorable cultural experience. It doesn’t matter the type of visitor – adventurer, foodie or history buff – Peru offers a seemingly infinite variety of activities to gratify every appetite. It comes as no surprise that its medieval sites, diverse ecosystem and alluring topography, lure tourists from around the globe, making it a leading destination in South America.

Lima

Known by many as the City of Kings, the city is the country’s capital and the figure of its Spanish industry, independence and colonial history. We recommend first-time guests to check-out the town museums to get a taste of the country’s depth of history. The Museo Larco is home to a myriad of pre-Columbian collections of Peru’s indigenous community, where visitors also get to enjoy grandiose gardens and the on-site restaurant. The neighbourhood plush of Miraflores offers what is perhaps the best coastal view of Lima. Wander through Parque del Amor, to experience the eye-catching views of the Pacific or head to the early clay pyramid of Huaca Pucllana to get a measure of history. Visits can be made during the day or night when the lights make it breathtaking. For shoppers, a visit to the Larcomar is a must.

Cusco

Lima may pride itself on being Peru’s capital. However, Cusco was the first seat of power for the early Inca Empire. UNESCO declared the Inca a World Heritage site in 1983, and it’s clear why they deserve the honour. Cusco is a magnificent city. From its 16th-century colonial buildings, winding streets, to the Inca, the city has an exotic vibe with a recognizable European feel.

Although there are numerous places where visitors can stay, the Inkaterra La Casona is conspicuous. The 16th-century chateau was remodelled to an 11-suite hotel located in the famous Plaza de las Nazarenas. Traditional Incan, Spanish décor and cosy features and a centralized open courtyard make for a remarkable vacation. The Plaza de Armas, Cusco’s main square is possibly the city’s most emblematic site and an excellent spot for a relaxed stroll and sight-seeing.

The square is surrounded by many restaurants and eclectic shops. The jaw-dropping Cusco Cathedral sits on the fringes of the square and was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Colonial works, artefacts, and archaeological relics are on display.

Cusco

Machu Picchu

This top destination is possibly the main reason tourists throng to Peru. Regarded as one of the wonders of the world, alongside big shots such as the Roman Colosseum and the Great Wall of China – Machu Picchu never disappoints. Getting to Machu Picchu is a memorable journey. Visitors ride via the Inca rail from Ollantaytambo or Cusco. The trip sees visitors pass through the picturesque sights of the Sacred Valley’s countryside. To tour Machu Picchu, you are required to purchase your ticket well in advance of your tour. To control the number of daily visitors, only a limited number of tickets are availed. Ticket purchases are made via the Ministerio de Culturas website. The site is available only in Spanish, thus follow this guide.