BEST PERU TOURS
8 DAYS: LIMA, CUSCO,
MACHU PICCHU & PUNO
9 DAYS: LIMA, PUERTO MALDONADO,
CUSCO & MACHU PICCHU
12 DAYS: LIMA, CHICLAYO, TRUJILLO, CUSCO, MACHU PICCHU,
NASCA & PARACAS
12 DAYS: LIMA, NASCA, PARACAS,
CUSCO, MACHU PICCHU & WASAI
AT TAMBOPATA RESERVE
These are the best Peru tours, ideal for those who want to see all of the Main Peru destinations. This tours can be customized to fit your individual travel dates and any specific requests you may have. Your travel consultant of Peru Traces will prepare a customized itinerary for you.
Peru is one of the most visited destinations by foreign tourists, as it not only has Archaeological wealth and monuments, but also a rich culture, beautiful tourist cities that combine the coast, highlands and jungle, the Peruvian cuisine is well known worldwide. We also have musicians, dancers, the famous Peruvian Pisco, and friendly people who always give tourists a warm welcome.
Peru has the best tourist attractions as we mentioned below.
The Best Peru attractions you will visit in these itineraries:
Peru, the Richest Country in the World. Today, the best places to visit in Peru are in front of your eyes. We invite you to travel to Peru where there is our legendary country which has ostentatious Archeological Centers, Magical Natural Attractions with incredible vistas, Majestic Temples from pre-Columbian times and from the Colonial Era, Ancient Palaces built by the Incas and by the Pre-Incas, Extraordinary Convents and Colonial Mansions, Excellent Healing Hot Springs, Traditional Villages, Exquisite Cuisine, Finely Woven Textiles and other Handmade Crafts… and the Greatest Living Culture. All of this in just one country: Peru.
Machu Picchu is the most precious treasure and the ultimate tourist destination in Peru. This Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu is the most visited tourist site in Peru. The ancient Incan citadel is located in the heart of the Peruvian Andes. Machu Picchu was constructed during the 15th century. During their Empire, it was an important Incan Sacred City and was also the Fantastic Vacation Palace of Pachacutec.
In 2007, Machu Picchu was declared to be one of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World. So, come feel the magical energy and change your life!
At this Incan citadel you can find some of the most impressive architecture ever built by man. There are marvelous temples, fountains, stairways and palaces, all constructed out of finely cut, polished and fitted stone. From high up at the House of the Guardian, you will be able to look down into the Sacred Plaza and see the Intihuatana, the Temple of the Sun, the Temple of the Condor, and the Temple of the 3 Windows. The peaks of Huayna Picchu Mountain and Machu Picchu Mountain tower over the main sector of the Citadel. This is also the end of one of the world’s most famous trekking routes, the Inca Trail.
Location: Machu Picchu is located in the district of Machu Picchu, in the province of Urubamba, in the Cusco region, 122 km. from the city of Cusco.
Among the Best attraction to Visit in Peru is the long, fertile and beautiful Colca Valley. This magnificent natural wonder is also known as the Valley of Fire, because it’s surrounded by active volcanoes. Colca Canyon is one of the deepest canyons in the world. At a fantastic overlook on the canyon’s rim, you can enjoy the famous Cross of the Condor where you will have a close-up view of wild condors in flight. This is one of the Must See Places in Peru. Colca Valley is not only all about seeing the Condors. There are wonderful Hot Springs, Incan and Pre-Incan Sites, and Wild Vicuñas, Alpacas and Llamas in the Pampa Cañahuas National Reserve.
Location: n the province of Caylloma, in the Arequipa region, 145 km. north of the city of Arequipa.
This incredible Incan citadel is located between the Apurimac Canyon and the flanks of the great snow-capped peak, Mt. Salkantay. These fantastic ruins were the last refuge of the Incas, because this is where they retreated to and where they fought the Spanish from, for over half a century after the European invasion. Since Choquequirao was constructed in the same style as Machu Picchu, they are considered to be sacred sister cities.
This magnificent Incan fortress is situated in the midst of lush vegetation high above the great canyon formed by the Apurimac River and close to the flanks of glacier-covered Salkantay Mountain. Notable constructions within this complex are the temples, terraces, fountains, and the White Llamas built right into the walls. In 2017, the Choquequirao Trek was named one of the Best Trekking Routes in the world.
Location: in the district of Santa Teresa, in the province of La Convención, in the Cusco region, 191 km. to the northeast of the city of Cusco.
These are a group of ancient geoglyphs which were drawn on the sands of the desert long, long ago. They are located near the Pacific Coast in the Nazca Valley on the Pampas of San Jose and Jumana. These enigmatic figures were created by the desert dwellers of the Nazca Culture between 200 AD. and 700 AD. They cover an area of 450 sq. km. The size of the geoglyphs vary from 50 meters up to 300 meters, and there are many different shapes and forms: geometric figures, figures of animals, figures of plants, and anthropomorphic figures, too. You will go on the adventure of your life when you take the flight over these ancient mysterious symbols. It will be a wonderful experience that you will never forget.
Most of the studies of the Nazca Lines have theorized that they either formed a giant astronomical calendar, or else they were a sacred place where water was venerated and where the cult of water worshipped. Some of the most famous figures include: the Hummingbird, the Monkey, the Frigate Bird, the Giant Bird, and the Spider. The best way to examine the Nazca Lines is by flying over them. There are flights available in small planes taking off from Pisco, Ica and Nazca.
Location: in the province of Nazca, in the Ica region, 450 km. to the south of Lima, Peru.
Kuelap is one of the most beautiful places to visit in Peru. This pre-Incan city is surrounded by a huge wall made out of stone blocks. It was constructed by the people of the Chachapoyas culture (800 AD. to 1470 AD.), and it was later occupied by the Incas. Located on top of Barreta Hill in the easternmost spur of the Peruvian Andes, you will discover this ancient site deep in the verdant Amazonas region. Actually, this marvelous site it’s not visited by very many tourist because it has only been recently discovered.
This Pre-Incan city is surrounded by stone wall which is 60 ft. tall. There are 3 separate entry gates. Within the walls there are administrative sections, religious centers, ceremonial spaces, and permanent residential areas. All of these are spread out on different levels. The majority of the edifices are circular, and they are decorated with friezes that show zigzag and rhomboid designs.
The Kuelap Archeological Center is another one of the new tourist attractions in the northern jungle of the country. Visitors like to come here because of the impressive architecture and the incredible views. Also, this is the only Peruvian tourist destination with a cable car system on which you can ride to the top of the hill.
Location: on the upper part of the Valley of the Utcubamba River, in the district of Tingo, in the province of Luya, in the Amazonas region, 50 km. to the south of Chachapoyas.
This is one of Peru’s most beautiful places, and it is a protected zone on the Pacific coast of Peru. The goal here is to conserve the marine ecosystems which include the marine wildlife and the guano-producing seabirds that live here in the cold waters of the Humboldt Current of the Pacific Ocean. Also protected are the lonely places where migratory birds rest and feed during their long journeys. These include the Famous Candelabrum of Paracas which is an ancient geoglyph high on a cliff above the ocean, and the Julio C. Tello on-site Museum at Lagunillas, here are plenty of beaches and fantastic rock formations, too.
Ballestas Islands, is one of the best attraction in Peru. This group of islands and rock formations is located half an hour’s boat ride off the coast. These islands are home to many thousands of guano-producing seabirds and other marine species. You can see seals, Humboldt penguins, pelicans, walruses, and many more. At this amazing tourist attraction you will have the chance to see untold numbers of soaring seabirds up close.
The best way to explore these rocky outcrops is by riding in a motor launch which leaves from the Bay of Paracas. The trip around the islands takes a total of 2 hours. It takes 30 minutes to get out to the islands. Then you will have one hour to observe the wildlife from the boat. Another 30 minute journey will return you to Paracas harbor where you can enjoy a really good breakfast or, around noon, you will find fresh ceviche.
Lake Titicaca is one of the most unique. It is the highest navigable lake in the world, and is one of the largest repositories of fresh water in South America. This mystical Lake is located on the Collao Plateau on the border between Peru and Bolivia. The crystal clear sapphire blue lake has a surface area of 8562 km² and it is 281 meters deep. According to Andean mythology, the founders of the Inca Empire emerged from its cold, clear waters. Today, every intrepid traveler desires to reach these fantastic shores and to share in the one-of-the-kind ancient cultural tradition that can be found on the Floating Island of the Uros.
The pre-Incan Tiahuanaco and Pucara cultures began to develop close to the Lake. And even today, many traditions and customs of the aboriginal people are carried on by the local inhabitants of the numerous islands out in the middle of the Lake. Three of the best places to visit on Lake Titicaca: they are Taquile Island, Amantani Island, and the Floating Islands of the Uros.
One of the most fascinating tourist centers that you will be able to explore out in the middle of Lake Titicaca are the Floating Islands of the Uros (which are made entirely of Totora reeds which grow in the shallows of the Lake). On your trip to Peru, don’t miss the tall burial towers of the Chullpas of Sillustani.
Location: in the Puno region.
The Amazon River is the largest and most beautiful river in the world, and it carries more fresh water to the sea than any other river on the planet. It is one of the greatest reserves of fresh water on Earth. Its source is high in the peaks of the Andean Mountain Range. From the Andes it runs 7200 km. to the Atlantic Ocean, passing through the territories of Peru, Colombia, and Brazil. Today, the Amazon River is a must top place to visit in Peru.
The Amazon Basin, which encompasses all the drainage area of the river, contains a vast array of natural ecosystems. If you had the time, explore them. There are numerous native communities living here, such as the Boras, the Yahuas, the Witotos, and many others. These communities live far from the amenities of modern life. Their ancient traditions date back for thousands of years.
Of all the fascinating cities to Visit in Peru, Iquitos is the best one where you can appreciate the profound beauty of the jungle and of the Amazon River. The best tourist overlooks, lodges, floating platforms, hanging bridges, and motor launches which will enable you to navigate the river, are located here and in the nearby area.
Location: the northeastern part of Peru, in the region of Iquitos, Loreto.
Peru is the richest country in the world, and within in Peru, the Sacred Valley of the Incas is one of the most fantastic places to visit in Peru. This is a long valley with a pleasant temperature, a warm climate and very fertile soil. The Urubamba River runs through the center of the valley, and it is very well known because it was considered a Sacred River by the Incas. Some of the finest large kernelled, white corn in the world is grown here, along with a great variety of legumes. Also, in this fantastic valley you will find wild fruits like; Chokecherry, Peach, Cherry, Plum and Cactus fruit.
It was within the Sacred Valley that the Incas built some of the principle archeological complexes in the Cusco area: Pisac, Ollantaytambo, Moray, and Chinchero. Here you will be able to visit a number of the region’s most important traditional towns. Pisac, Maras, Ollantaytambo, and Chinchero, the inhabitants still honor their Incan ancestors and practice age old traditions that have been passed down to them through the centuries.
The Sacred Valley is also an ideal place to rest up and to enjoy the fantastic local cuisine. Some of the area’s finest hotels and restaurants are located here in the Valley. If you are going to Visit Machu Picchu, you will have to pass through the Sacred Valley. There are two railway stations here: the Ollantaytambo train station and the Urubamba train station.
Location: in the provinces of Calca and Urubamba, in the Cusco region.
The Inca Trail to Machu Picchu is the most popular trekking route in the Americas, and indeed, in the whole world. It is part of the Qhapaq Ñan network of roads and trails. This was the Incan highway system that stretched for over 20,000 km. throughout their Empire. Actually, this trekking route begins at Km. 82 of the Cusco-Machu Picchu Railway. The walking distance is 43 km., and the hike lasts for four days. Of all the Must See Places in Peru, this ancient Incan highway is the one that calls to adventurers, young and old.
All along the trail there are incredibly impressive views of snow-capped mountain peaks, of valleys, canyons and tropical rainforests. There are quite of few amazing Incan archeological complexes on the route. (Llactapata, Runkurakay, Saycamarca, Phuyupatamarca and Wiñaywayna). This trek takes the traveler through different ecosystems where there are different varieties of endangered orchids and plenty of multicolored tropical birds. During this epic journey to Machu Picchu, you will have the most memorable experience of your life.
The final destination of the Inca Trail is the Sanctuary of Machu Picchu. Just before entering the sacred precincts, every traveler stops at the Inti Punku (the Gateway of the Sun). From there one can appreciate the immensity of this sacred city, and look down into the canyon of the Urubamba River. It is amazing to see Mt. Machu Picchu, Mt. Huayna Picchu, and the fantastic panorama of all the other marvelous mountains that surround this amazing site.
Location: in the Cusco region.
The Tambopata National Reserve is a natural, protected area where the plants, the wildlife, and all of the diverse ecological processes of the tropical rainforest are conserved. This is the perfect place to connect with nature, and to observe the wildlife and the incredible complexity of this verdant jungle ecosystem.
Tambopata National Reserve is located in the basin of the Tambopata River, and it is contiguous with the Bahuaja Sonene National Park. Tambopata’s basin has more biodiversity than almost any other place in the world. There are 632 bird species, 1200 butterfly species, 103 amphibian species, 180 fish species, 169 mammal species, and 103 species of reptiles found here. Also, 40 other species of transcontinental migratory birds pass through here twice a year on their migratory flights. There are innumerable creeks, swamps, ox-bow lakes, and riverside forests in this tropical wonderland.
Principle tourist attractions in Tambopata are: Cocococha Lake, Sachavacayoc Lake, the Chuncho and Colorado collpas (mineral-rich salt licks), and Lake Sandoval. Once you are at Tambopata National Reserve, you can enjoy any of the following adventure sport activities: Zip-Lining, Canopy Walk-Ways, River Rafting and Bird Watching. A splendid time is guaranteed to all intrepid travelers who come to this fascinating bio-region.
Location: in the districts of Tambopata and Inambari, in the province of Tambopata, in the Madre de Dios region.
Gocta Waterfall is a very impressive waterfall surrounded by lush, exuberant vegetation. It has an aura of enchantment and mystery. This waterfall is 771 m. high. That makes it the 3rd highest waterfall in Peru, and the 15th highest in the world. Gocta Waterfall is deep within in the Amazon Jungle where the air is full of the warble of the birds and the chatter of the insects. The bright colors of the birds flash out of the multi-hued green background. As you wander through this virgin rainforest, you will feel like the very first explorer who has ever set foot here.
The Gocta Waterfall is located near the towns of Cocachimba and San Pablo. Locals call these falls La Chorrera (the Spout). These falls have two drops: first drop is 231 m., and second drop is 540 m. Total drop is 771 m. There are some 22 different waterfalls in the area. Wildlife here is spectacular. You will be able to observe spectacled bears, Andean toucans, spatula-tailed hummingbirds, and the cocks-of-the-rock. This is a wonderful destination for adventurers who love trekking and connecting with the bosom of Mother Nature.
In order to arrive at the pool at the base of the falls, it is necessary to hike through the cloud forest. Average walking time is 6 hours, (round trip). Be sure to bring your bathing suit with you, because when you arrive at the pool at the base of the falls you will be enveloped by the rainbow filled mist.
Location: in the district of Valera, in the province of Bongará, in the Amazonas region.
Chan Chan is one of the largest adobe city in the Americas, and the 2nd largest in the world. It was built by the people of the pre-Incan Chimu culture who developed their civilization on Peru’s northern coast. They thrived between 900 and 1300 AD. It is located in the Moche Valley, between the beach at Huanchaco and the city of Trujillo.
The Chan Chan Archeological Complex covers 20 hectares. There are 10 small walled cities. These walls are decorated by geometric figures, fish, and birds, all in high relief. Chan Chan was the administrative capital of the Chimu culture. There were between 20.000 and 30,000 people living here during its heyday.
It is near the city of Trujillo, in the districts of Trujillo and Huanchaco. The city is comprised of palaces, administrative centers, and residences of the elite classes, temples, mausoleums of the Chimu rulers, normal neighborhoods, pathways, cemeteries, and canals.
Chan Chan has been declared to be part of the Cultural Heritage of Humanity because of its transcendence, its historical value, and its imposing architecture.
Location: 5 km. outside of the city of Trujillo.
The Museum of the Royal Tombs of Sipan is an exact replica of the burial place of the Lord of Sipan, who was the head of the Mochica state during the 3rd century AD. This museum has 3 levels in which are housed and exhibited over 2000 pieces of gold, jewelry, ceramics, and burial relics from the Mochica culture. These important pieces belonged to an ancient Peruvian government. Among them are ornaments, emblems, standards, a copper crown, a breastplate of shell, earrings of gold and turquoise, vestments, golden rattles, cotton headwear, and adornments made from feathers.
The design of the museum was inspired by the form of the Mochican truncated pyramids. Access to the interior is via a 58 m. long ramp which leads up to the 3rd floor.
Location: in the city of Lambayeque.
The Santa Catalina Monastery is the most important religious complex in Arequipa and in all of Peru. According to the opinion of many travelers, the monastery is a little city within the city. This emblematic and historical religious complex was built during the 1580’s. It was designed to house the daughters of the most distinguished families of Arequipa. Its name was: Monasterio de Monjas Privado de la Orden de Santa Catalina de Siena (The Monastery of the Private Nuns of the Order of St. Catherine of Sienna).
The cloisters within were divided into four neighborhoods. In this way it sought to emulate the urban plan of the city of Arequipa during early Colonial times. Within the monastery there are streets, passageways, kitchens, bedrooms, plazas, and fountains. The entire compound (which has an area of over 20,000 sq. m.) is surrounded by high walls. The monastery was built out of sillar (volcanic stone) and adobe mud. It was a fusion of indigenous and Spanish-style construction. It is decorated with magnificently painted frescos.
Today the convent is also a museum where some of the most important religious artifacts on the continent are safely guarded. These include over 400 restored paintings by artists of the famous Cusco School. Many of these works of art are masterpieces.
Until 1970, this was an absolutely cloistered convent. Today the public is welcome to come in and appreciate the feelings and the values of Inca culture joined to the Spanish culture.
Location: in the central historic district of Arequipa.
This is the most extensive reserve in the Peruvian Amazon region. It is in the Loreto region, and encompasses parts of the provinces of Requena, Alto Amazonas and Ucayali. It includes the basins of the Pacaya Samiria and Yanayacu-Pucate Rivers. It covers an area of 2,080,000 hectares, and protects the ecosystems of low jungle. It also helps to promote genetic diversity as it serves to protect species in danger of extinction (the black lizard, the river otter, and the paiche fish). Studies of the local flora and fauna are encouraged here.
Pacaya Samiria is an ideal place for nature tourism. Here there are more than one thousand animal species, and there are 965 native plant species. It is possible to practice live-in tourism in a native community. Within the reserve there are many native and mestizo communities that live off the abundant natural resources of the reserve. You could go trekking, camping, caving, bird-watching, and observe the local flora and fauna.
The most popular spot to visit is the El Dorado Lagoon. Because of the large quantity of wildlife in this area, many people consider this to be the heart of the reserve.
The best way to get to know the reserve is to follow either one of the following 3 tourist routes: the Cuenca Yanayacu-Pucate route; the Lower Basin and Middle Basin of the Samiria River route; or the Lower Basin of the Pacaya River route.
Location: in the Loreto region.
Plaza de Armas, Lma, Peru
Huanchaco is a historic beach which is located in the Huanchaco district, 13 km. outside of the city of Trujillo.
Actually, it is part of the Moche Route. It is the most popular beach in the Trujillo area. Last Oct. 26, Huanchaco was recognized as a one of the world’s top surfing beaches, and it was the site of an international surfing competition.
Beyond the fact that Huanchaco has wonderful beaches, it is also world famous for its boats made out of Totora reeds. (They are called ‘little reed horses’) This style of boat has been used for fishing and exploring on the Pacific coast since the time of the Moche and Chimu civilizations. These boats are woven out the stems and the leaves of the Totora reed.
One more reason to visit Huanchaco is to enjoy the succulent seafood. The basis of this cuisine is locally caught fish, shellfish, and seaweed. Don’t leave without trying out Peruvian ceviche. On the beach at Huanchaco there are plenty of aquatic sports that you can participate in.
Location: in the district of Huanchaco, 13 km. from the city of Trujillo.