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South America

The magic and mystery of Peru

eTN Staff Writer  Aug 14, 2009

A trip to Peru is fascinating and magical. Its varied scenery, from its desert coastline to its lush mountains and fertile valleys, its tasty seafood, and its absorbing ancient culture are among the most interesting experiences in South America. Sightseeing in Peru is an other-worldly experience. It offers a plethora of scenic landscapes, as well as a cultural mix that is evident in both its architecture and customs. The first taste makes the traveler curious to know more.

Visit Machu Picchu, the most recognized settlement of the Incas, located in the southern Peruvian Andes in a unique and mystical setting. To tour this holy place is to witness an archaeological site with architectonic and engineering innovations which have survived the ages. There are no words to describe the magnificence of such a scene, which has become one of the most highly-sought destinations for tour operators in Peru.

Cordillera Blanca is the perfect place for trekking, climbing, cycling, rafting, or to simply enjoy the highest mountain in Peru. Huascaran National Park includes the whole Cordillera Blanca which is 4,000 meters above sea level and deserving of the Unesco World Biosphere Reserve status. Visiting this part of central Peru is a dream-come-true for nature and archeology lovers.

The famous Nazca lines, located in the south west of the country, are a set of gigantic ancient zoomorphic and geometric figures, some simple and others more complex. All images are mapped onto the surface and can be seen in their entirety only from the air. There are more questions than answers about how between 200 BC and 700 BC, inhabitants of this desert were able to draw such immense images on the ground. Close by is located Cerro Blanco, which, at a height of 2, 078 meters, is the highest dune in the world, an ideal destination for sand boarding and para-gliding in Peru.

Peru is a country with a strong indigenous tradition that can be seen in the colorful markets where each item can be viewed as a small masterpiece. Pisac, a small town located in the Sacred Valley, is one of the best ways to see how the Quechua tradition is experienced today. Pisac´s Sunday Market is well-known and is ideal for having direct contact with locals who are selling their products. At the same time, Pisac is an ideal starting point for tour of Peru, visiting archaeological sites, breathtaking scenery and the local flora and fauna.

Peru is about discovering new tastes and scents, unique music, hallowed stories, and congenial people. Ancient history and modern life run together in a poetic and captivating way, resulting in a beautiful country hard to leave behind.

The magic and mystery of Peru
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