Flashback to our trip to Peru last year for our birthday’s.
As you know i normally do an overview of the places we go with always a few details about food (of course).
So beginning with this, we felt in love with Peru, more places than others but all super interesting and with such a unique culture !
7. Peruvian oasis : Huacachina
Unfortunately we didn’t have time to visit this so peculiar oasis in the middle of the desert. But for sure we will put on our list of things to do there when we return 🙂
6. Arequipa & Colca Canyons or Nazca ?
I have a little doubt here, because, for me i choose Arequipa but also visit Nazca. For me both deserve to be in this list so here a few tips.
Arequipa is the second big city at Peru, by that doesn’t mean that is a proper big city like Lima, but has lot more to do and also little bit more of night life than cuzco for example.
The major attraction of this part of the country is that all the city is builded with white stone from the volcano (actually people call it the white city). Yes! as you can imagine, has some cool landscapes surrounded by volcanos (definitely you should try) . And of course, you must do the Colca Canyons excursion. Also there’s a stop for watching falcons , very impressive if they fly near you!
Has a few museums around the city, and a huge convent that is worth to visit. It extends to all the block and ,although there are few nuns living there, it’s a public place to visit and where you can see the rooms of the convents.
PD: foodie tips – we found a place on the main “plaza” on a second floor, that we ate deliciously (not very cheap) but typical and made with stones, like old ways of Peruvian cooking called . In this city we ate at the market 🙂
Nazca it’s an area with mountains that have symbols drawn on the sand and you can do an excursion on the air (mini airplane or helicopter) to see them from the sky.
For me Arequipa has more to do if you stay 2 days or 3 and Nazca is to visit during a day and that’s it. Keeping a nice memory of it. And also if you can do both, totally do it.
5. Amazonic Peruvian Jungle
One sad point for us, as we couldn’t get there, but for sure we won’t lose it next time.
This is such an experience ! Totally recommended for the more adventurous and the more free and wild 🙂
There are some points to consider for this adventure : Iquitos (city where you can start the Amazônica experience), also boat trip from Puerto Maldonado (where all can start too). There are a few ways to get inside and also organisations that can help you planning your connection to the nature.
Also there are some natural reserves/ parks that totally deserve a visita like Manu… To be honest, there are a lot, i drop you the name of the biggest that we selected as the most interesting.
4. Titicaca Lake experience
This is one of the experiences we had in life that totally marked us, not about the lake but about the people that live on the lake and how they build their houses and also how they day by day is.
Let’s start from the arriving part, we have to get into Puno which is the city nearest to the Peruvian part of the Titicaca Lake, yes has another part of Bolivia. By the way we came from Arequipa in Bus, with a very comfortable company called (cruz del sur).
Once we got there, the city doesn’t have many things to see, it’s just a passing city to the lake, i must say that the major part of the people makes an excursion to know the floating island and also the highest island on the lake : Taquille. But we wanted something different, we stayed 2 nights with a family on the floating house/island of them and we were able to have a day with them and see how they live, and it’s such a unique experience, totally recommendable. Believe me you’ll never forget about it. You can see how they cook (very original and and outside), fish with them, also learn how to make handmade crafts, things they sell on the city to get money for living.
Resuming, wonderful experience that will stay in your hearts forever ! People are so kind and open-heart for you, also explains you all about their culture. Also dresses you like them 🙂
3. Gastronomic tour – Lima
One of our favourite cities because of the variety of good restaurants, for all the pockets and also markets where you can find ingredients for all the country.
Saying that, you must image that we had a foodie tour planned ! Of course !
Here our suggestions for Lima:
First of all visit 1 or 2 markets to get familiar with the ingredients, ask the sellers and the locals every single spice you are curious about and if you can, try some fruits & vegetables from the peruvian lands. So tasty!
After that you definitely need to eat a ceviche soon. La Mar for example is one of the most known place for that, the only “negative” thing is that you can’t book a table and as we were a big group at Lima i found a 2nd option very very delicious called :
El Mercado by the hand of chef Rafael Osterling. Super casual place, with amazing decoration and delicious ceviche (& much more dishes). Only negative point maybe the service, they were a little bit distracted but all ok.
Following the steps of the best restaurants of Latin America and also the world, i totally need to speak about this one (considered number 1 ): Maido by the chef Micha Mitsuharu. Specialist or the boss i must say of the nikkei cuisine. There wasn’t any dish that i could take a negative point, every single step was amazing, surprising and totally delicious. Can’t wait to be back. As the high level of cuisine and the place shows, you can image that isn’t cheap at all but i recommend to everybody that has the possibility to go.
Let’s keep discovering this amazing gastronomy that Lima has to offer to the visitants. Another restaurant that we went, very delicious also where i could have the Uni, one of my favourite ingredients of the sea, perfectly incorporated to a beautiful dish. I’m talking about Malabar by chef Pedro Miguel Schiaffino , located at San Isidro a area known for the restaurants area also.
On the same are you can find another restaurant very known, with some interesting cocktails too using ingredients from the Amazonia Jungle, which is very interesting and also the place has some cool decoration inside the theme of the jungle: AMAZ.
We can also tried one that has some history behind, specific, some ruins behind : Huaca Pucllana Has a huge variety of dishes, not very expensive and has the beautiful ruins behind giving it an amazing charm to the restaurant. Seems like is also very known around the world because has lots of pictures of famous people when you arrive.
Seems like this point is one of the longest of this post :O ! Let’s change the tour of restaurants for ones more street food. Every year there is a food festival in Lima called Mistura, and it’s f** delicious haha. It’s a huge place filled of food trucks, bars, like food market where you can find all the typical gastronomy dishes from this amazing culture. A part of the food, also has drinks & concerts too! Interesting plan for a journey in Lima.
Last suggestion (i confess 🙂 : La Lucha. This is a different style of place, a sandwich place, and you definitely need to try one, believe me !
2. Cuzco & Sacred Valley
Cutest city i ever met, the streets have an un explainable charm, all in stone with buildings carrying an old story behind (for example, The Marriot Hotel was a Convent). You should walk & walk and discover.
Some points on the city are : Koricancha Temple, some museums like the INKA and also visit de churches, Plaza de Armas and all street markets around. Some unique experience and Peruvian is to go inside the San Pedro’s market, you’ll discover lots of special spices, typical ingredients and also if you want to be more adventurous, have a seat and lunch there !
For the Foodies like us that are always searching where to eat and try the food culture of every country you visit. Here our personal list of restaurants that you should try or at least pass by and smell the dishes 🙂
- Barrio Ceviche: i confess, here we ate one of the best ceviches we ever had! Amazing place, unique preparation in front of you (if you stay on the bar ) ,delicious dishes , super good location (plaza de armas) and good price. TOTAL RECOMMENDATION
- Limo: it’s near by the ceviche but a little bit fancier, and more expensive but has some tasty cocktails followed with a fusion Peruvian and Japanese cuisine (nikkei).Interesting place.
- Chicha: is from the famous Peruvian chef Gastón Acurio. Delight yourself with some alpaca meat and more typical ingredients from this amazing country and city. Little bit expensive but good.
- Green Point: for the vegetarians, you can’t loose this place, is an old familiar house that became a busy restaurant with delicious offers on the menu.
- Divina comedia: cute place, good ambience, live music sometimes and also Italian kind (in case you are not falling in love with the typical food). Has a small garden where you can also see the stone oven for the pizzas 🙂
- El Paisa: typical big restaurante (with performances or concerts at night time) with food from the coast, as you can imagine, Cusco isn’t the best place to eat ceviche, although you can find it, it’s easier to finde some meat dishes or just trout if you search for fish. But here, you can find all kinds of delicatessens and with a very good price ! Obviously isn’t so beautiful or fancy as the ones on the beginning but it’s worth it.
Ups ! I lost myself again with the food ! Sorry is on my blood haha. Back to culture and places to visit.
Definitely you should do the Sacred Valley excursions where you can visit : Ollantaytambo (amazing ruins and also a place where you can pick the train to the village of Machupichu, and some people we met that they spend 1 night there and it’s a very special village to visit), Pisac terraces / Market, Urubamba, Moray (science of the peruvian and the plantations), Salines of Maras (where all their salt comes from – gorgeous ).
I have also to speak about a small little place called Chincheros , which can be part of some excursion, is where all the ladies from there and Andean houses around sell their handmade textiles and also explain to you how they do it. Personally i loved it, and as you know i have my bags brand LULADA, i was able to buy some special materials for them.
There’s also another excursion which unfortunately we couldn’t do but we totally recommend – The mountains of 7 colours.
Resuming, if you are thinking about going to Peru, Cusco has to be one of your points on the map.
1. Macchupicchu & Waynna picchu
Last but the first, the main reason people plan a trip to this amazing and cultural country. Background of an unique history inca about his old city hidden in the mountains and one of the seven wonder of the world.
Ladies and gentleman, Macchu picchu & Waynna picchu:
There are 3 ways of arriving there: walking and doing the inca path to the old city which can take 2 or 4 days, unique experience and recommendable for the ones that have more resistance and love hiking in the middle of mountains.
The other and the principal one that everybody does is pick a train (by the way you have to book in advance and also the entry of the monument) from Cusco or from Ollantaytambo.
Another way and more unusual is to do by train or another transport and climb a mountain near and sleep in an air hotel on the high of the mountain. Have a look, is very interesting and for the bravest.
The train leaves you at the city where you have to pick a bus to go to the monument. You have to pick the tickets as soon as you can (on a small wood box that says tickets here) . Arriving to the cue and also on the monument door you’ll find tons of touristic guides that will offer their services to explain you the history, must say is a good option.
I suggest as well (if you are in a good physic condition) to climb the Waynna Picchu, breathtaking view of the Macchu picchu and a special experience. By the way, good shoes , like a layer of clothes because is small raining, hot and at same time little bit of windy.
Sorry i took so long to write this post, but as you can see there are lots of things to do and to show from Peru. Must say we will come back and do the other things on the list we didn’t arrive on time to do it.