What to Do in Peru
Collected by Maureen Santucci
Beyond heavy hitters like Machu Picchu and Lake Titicaca, Peru offers endless opportunities for exploration. From museums and national parks to markets, salt flats, and lesser-known towns, there’s much to discover in this fascinating country.
Huayna Picchu, Peru
Huayna Picchu is the landmark peak at Machu Picchu from which the classic, shot-from-above postcard photos are typically taken. While the views are spectacular, of course, the trail is not easy, studded with precarious, sometimes uneven stone...
Machu Picchu Pueblo (Aguas Calientes), Aguas Calientes, Peru
Set on 12 lush, cloud-forested acres next to the Urumbamba River, this eco-resort (a member of the National Geographic Unique Lodges of the World) is practically a destination in and of itself. Here, 83 rustic-but-chic, whitewashed adobe casitas...
Plazoleta Nazarenas 231, Cusco 08000, Peru
A sister institution to the Larco Museum in Lima, MAP is one of the best museums in Cuzco. The museum uses objects of Peru’s many pre-Columbian civilizations to explain their differing cultures. Exhibits—representing cultures from...
Santo Domingo s/n, Cusco 08000, Peru
This Cuzco corner presents a notable juxtaposition between ancient Incan and Spanish colonial architecture. Since the Incas worshipped their sun god, Inti, above all others, this temple in their imperial capital was the most important of the...
PLAZA MAYOR, CENTRO DE, Cusco 08000, Peru
Five minutes after settling into my hostel in Cusco and meeting up with an international contingent of newly found friends from the prior week in Lima, we made our way toward the Plaza de Armas, center of the gone but not forgotten Inca Empire. As...
Calle Berlin 375, Miraflores 15074, Peru
As interesting as Incan history can be to adults, to kids even the most awe-inspiring sites can start to look like a bunch of rocks. The ChocoMuseo provides a great time-out for children (and grown-ups, too). Exhibits on the history of...
Calle 26A, Bellavista 07011, Peru
For those of us used to seeing chicken cut into parts, wrapped in plastic, and cooling in supermarket refrigerators, a trip to a local Peruvian market is fascinating and a bit daunting. At the biggest market, San Pedro, just up the...
Diagonal 176, Miraflores 15074, Peru
Kennedy Park, one of Miraflores’s favorite destinations, is a lovely, well-placed garden, especially favored for afternoon and evening strolls, walking dogs, browsing the kiosks, and firing up romances. You’ll see artists at work...
Playa Pescadores, Distrito de Chorrillos 15063, Peru
If you go south along the shore, past Miraflores and Barranco, you will reach Chorrillos. While not part of many tourist itineraries, it’s a quaint, off-the-beaten-path seaside area offering marvelous ocean views and sandy strolls....
Ruta Santisimo Downhill 2, Chinchero, Peru
One of the first stops outside of Cusco was on the Anta plain at 12,375 ft. The 16th century ruin of Chinchero is rumored to be the birthplace of the rainbow. I would be hard pressed to argue those refractions of light could have a more beautiful...
Learn about Inca terraces and grain storage, find the profile of Inca god Viracocha carved into mountain stone, and take in the view of the charming town of Ollantaytambo (if you're lucky, you'll catch a rainbow!). Beautiful, interesting, and a...
Km. 70.5 Carretera Urubamba-Ollantaytambo, Sector Huincho, Urubamba, Peru
Llama Pack, a social project, allows you to experience the breathtaking scenery of the Sacred Valley while hiking alongside llamas. These beasts have been used to carry goods since Incan times, before horses and mules existed in Peru....