If this is your first time coming to Peru maybe you are wondering what to do and where to go for enjoy your vacation? . Peru is such a rich and diverse country so, you need to plan several visit to fully explore it. Hence, this guide will touch on the best places to visit in Peru for your first trip to this lovely country.
There are three regions in Peru. It is a coast with a lot of beaches, famous dessert- where you can do sandboard and buggys and the famous Huacachina oasis. Also, it has highlands, where you can find the deepest canyon on earth, the Colca canyon and sea the condor fly. You can explore the highest navigable lake, the Titicaca lake and of course Machu Picchu, one of the 7 world wonders of the modern world. And lastly, the lush rain forest with many natural reserves- Manu and Pacaya samiria– where you can see pink dolphins swim in the river and fish some pirañas, typical fishes from the sweet water of the peruvian rivers.
Where to explore on your first Visit in Peru
As stated earlier, Peru is a magical country and you will need a lot of time to discover all the places that it has to offer, but I will recommend you the MUST to see places in your first visit of Peru.
As you land in Peru, you will arrive in Lima. Maybe you don’t know, but after Cairo, Lima is the second biggest city located in the middle of a dessert. Lima is the capital city of Peru, the only capital city in the whole South American continent located by the seashore. With 10 million inhabitants, 1/3 of the Peruvian population Lima has become in the last years in the gastronomical city of the world.
A taste of Peruvian cuisine
Peruvian cuisine has become worldwide know, not only because of the richness and diversity of the ingredients used in the different dishes. This is because of the innovative techniques by famous national chefs- Gaston Acurio, Virgilio Martinez and Mitsuharu ‘Micha’ Tsumura -which is a fusion of different world dishes and peruvian cuisine. An example of such dish is the Nikkei kitchen. If you are a foodie, you need to visit our famous restaurant ranked in the 50 Best restaurants: Central, Maido and Astrid & Gaston, you won’t regret it.
Lima, Called the City of Kings, Pearl of the Pacific and the Garden City, during the 16th to 18th centuries it was the seat of power for the Spanish Viceroyalty in America, as can be seen in its ancestral architecture. A city of contrasts, where bold, modern buildings stand next to pre – Inca millennial huacas or ceremonial sites.
Lima has a lot to offer, since the modernity of shopping malls, modern museums such as the famous MALI, the MATE of the world known photographer Mario Testino and the Parque de las Aguas, and also the ancient huacas in the middle of the city, in the heart of Miraflores in the restaurant La huaca Pucllana, a perfect location to have a spectacular dinner aside the magnificent Huaca.
Another nice activity recommended in Lima is experiencing the riding The peruvian Paso Horses. You can visit on a Full- day the famous vast archaeological citadel of Pachacamac, located 45 minutes far from Lima. This temple was dedicated to the deity Pachacamac, was believed to he was the creator of the universe and it was the divinity adored by the old Andean civilizations.
The site comprises pyramidal temples and enclosures built by successive pre-Colombian civilizations and finally the Incas. Highlights include the Temple of Pachacamac, the sun God shrine, and the Palace of the Chosen women or Virgins of the Sun.
What do in Barranco
Another place you can explore after Lima is Barranco. Traditional dishes to try, are of course a ceviche, and I would recommend to go to Canta Rana a famous Cevicheria located in Barranco the bohemian district of the capital City. Ask for a Ceviche, Arroz con Mariscos and of course a Pisco Sour our National Drink. Pisco Sour, is a drink made of Pisco, ice, egg white, lemon and sugar, it is very tasty! But don’t confuse it sweetness… it can be tricky… so be careful with it!! I’m sure you will love it!
While you are in Barranco, you need to visit also the Puente de los Suspiros and la Bajada de los Baños. While crossing the “Puente de los Suspiros” hold your breath and cross the bridge while thinking in a wish… if you manage to do it, the popular sayings say your wish may come true. Near the Puente de los Suspiros you will Find the restaurant “tio Mario”, ask for some anticuchos and for dessert some picarones.
A quick visit to Pachacamac is another place to know. Explore the ‘Casa Hacienda Rizo Patron’ (Peruvian Hacienda House), located in the valley of Lurin (10 minutes from Pachacamac temple), in its beautiful gardens, a Peruvian Horsewoman “Amazona” will introduce you to the world of the Peruvian Paso Horse, narrating the story of this noble animal. You will have there the opportunity to ride the horse and continue eating our amazing food.
I could continue writing a lot about Lima, but these are the highlights I recommend. Of course, don’t forget to visit Miraflores and the Historical Lima City Centre where the Main Square, Cathedral, The Town Hall and Government Palace are Located. Also you can read our post on 6 best places to visit in switzerland.
In other to make your visit to Peru easier for you, you can check out get your guide to book the available tour options. This brand offers tours in about 16 countries inclusive of Peru. There are different tour available to explore Peru at Get your guide at an affordable rate. They offers tours within Peru for full day, half day or a few hours depending on the places you want to visit.
Written by @lamaletarota.pe