The humble neighbour to the west of Brazil is often underrated in discussions of vacations and exotic tourism. Peru, however, has some of the most fascinating archaeological and cultural treasures in all of South America. From the Amazon River, through the Inca Trail, all the way to Machu Picchu one can experience a variety of wildlife, ancient ruins, and mountainous scenery that truly captures humble tranquillity of Peru.
The most prestigious jungle in the world allows tourists a deep look inside at all its wonders with expert naturalists as their guides. The Peruvian Amazon contains only 5% of the Peruvian population making it a natural oasis that allows you to experience a part of the world hardly even touched by mankind.
The tours are not limited to the outer skirt of the jungle, but take you into the rivers that vein themselves deep into the jungle. Motorized canoes are an included part of many Peruvian Amazon tours which carry you to intimate riverside lodges as you observe even more of the Amazon wildlife throughout the boated tour. The wildlife in the Amazon consists of some of the rarest species in the world. This habitat, along with the hospitality and lodging throughout these amazing adventures, make for a once in a lifetime experience.
This trek is an unreal blend of archaeological and mountainous wonder as you hike alongside some of the most glorious and beautiful landmarks in the world. The Inca Trail is actually comprised of three overlapping trails: the Mollepata, Classic, and One Day. Each trail offers its own flavour of majestic scenery and cultural experience.
The Mollepata is the longest out of the three and takes you through the landscapes of the high Andes Mountains. This hike is no easy task but is well worth the venture to see some of the Inca ruins and tunnels as well as majestic views of the local mountains.
The Classic trail is a lot less strenuous and offers a bit more in cultural site seeing. Along this trek you can see the ancient ruins of Patallacta, a site used for religious and ceremonial functions and at one time for the housing of soldiers from Willkaraquay, a nearby hill-top site that was one of the first Inca settlements in this region of Peru around 500 B.C. The historical and cultural experience of this trail makes it a quite a moving experience for tourists, especially history enthusiasts.
The third and final trail is known as One Day. This trail is a two-day walk for the average tourist but is known as the “One Day” trail for the Incas who take great pride in their navigation through the Inca trail and would use its land as a place of rest and recovery. This trail allows you to explore the Intipata, a large set of agricultural terraces that follow the convex of the terrain. This is all right before you come upon the Winay Wayna (forever young) which features a peaceful harmonic flight of fountains used as ritual baths. The 19 springs utilized to make these fountains make it a rare piece of the natural world that is truly a site to see.
At the end of the Inca trail stands the great mountain sanctuary, Machu Picchu. Near the peak of the mountain is a city-like settlement that is believed by many archaeologists to have been the estate of the great Inca Emperor Pachacuti during the fifteenth century. Frequently referred to as the “City of Incas”, it is one of the most famous icons of the Inca civilization. Naturally polished dry-stone walls make up the city as it sits high in the heart of the Peruvian paradise surrounding it.
Charlie Bennett is an aspiring travel writer who has recently been sharing his tales of South American travel for the Peru travel specialists GAdenvtures.com