[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]During the summer of 2012, for my six month internship, I was staying in the Inca capital Cusco in Peru. I worked in a boys orphanage, with not only orphans, but also children who were placed here for other reasons like physical and/or sexual abuse.
Besides working in the orphanage there was also some spare time to explore Peru. And what a beautiful and diverse country it is! From the jungle to the dessert, from the impressive Andes to beautiful beaches up North: you name it, Peru has it! Nowadays Peru is doing a great job when it comes to tourism. It even got recognised as South America’s food capital last year! You will need at least three weeks to grasp all the beautiful, diverse aspects Peru has to offer.[/vc_column_text][vc_column_text]
The itinerary below is based on the travels I made during my stay in Peru. Mostly I traveled by bus or in mini-vans organized by tour operators. Always try to check how many bus drivers a company has and how often they claim to switch them during a trip. Important when you travel a long distance. I would recommend night buses, especially for travellers on a budget, since it saves you money by not paying for a night in a ho(s)tel.
Lima (2 days) – Paracas (2 days) – Nazca (1 day) – Arequipa (2 days) – Colca Canyon hike (3 days) – Puno (2 days) – Cusco (2 days) – Machu Picchu hike (3 days) – Cusco (1 day) – Manu National park (3 days) – vliegen van Cusco naar Lima (1 day)
Book a direct flight to Lima for the last part of your trip to avoid a 24-hours bus drive. Airlines such as LAN and Avianca offer tickets for approximately 100 dollars. If your plan is traveling to Ecuador after Peru I would recommend a stop in Trujillo or Mancora for a few days of sun, sea and beach during the summer season.[/vc_column_text][vc_gallery type=”image_grid” images=”7272″ img_size=”large” onclick=””][vc_masonry_media_grid element_width=”6″ grid_id=”vc_gid:1452545060475-8dac1b97-0c21-3″ include=”7283,7281″][vc_text_separator title=”Machu Picchu and Cusco”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]
Machu Picchu – The highlight during your trip through Peru is without any doubt Machu Picchu. There are tons of tour operators in Cusco that offer a 3-4 day trekking to the Inca capital so take some time to do a small research to find the best price and value. Always check what’s included so you will not get surprised with extra costs during the trekking.
I joined the Inca Jungle trail which I really liked because of the variety during the trekking. We did some mountain biking, rafting (extra cost) and zip lining (extra cost). At night we slept in hostels or in little lodges.
Another beautiful hike is the Salkantay trekking. You would love this hike if you are looking for an adventurous one. The distances you hike are longer than the distance during the Inca Jungle Trail. There is less variety but the landscapes are amazing! At night you will sleep in a tent, luckily the carriers take care of them during the hike.
Colca Canyon – To be honest with you this hike is even better than the Machu Pichu Inca Jungle Trail. The Colca Canyon in Peru is not as famous as the Grand Canyon in the USA, but at least it is twice as deep. It is the second largest canyon in the world (3,400 meter).
There are daily tourist busses from Arequipa to the Colca Canyon. You can choose between a 2 or 3 days trekking, or you can hike the trail yourself which I will not recommend due to safety issues. Unless you know exactly what your doing when it comes to surviving.
Manu Jungle – A tour to the Manu Jungle is easily booked when you are in Cusco. This national park is the most accessible jungle in Peru. During the tour you sleep in jungle lodges, you take a boat trip over the river and your guide tells all you want to know about the flora and fauna there.[/vc_column_text][vc_masonry_media_grid element_width=”6″ grid_id=”vc_gid:1452545153076-3806ce4a-3f80-4″ include=”7286,7288″][vc_text_separator title=”Manu Jungle and the Inca Jungle Trail”][vc_column_text]
Peru Ho(s)tel tips
My favourite neighbourhood in Cusco, due to the little squares with markets and the great restaurants in the area, is San Blas and I would highly recommend to book your accommodation here as well. This hotel in San Blas is rated very wel by guests and apparently has an amazing breakfast. From here it’s only a five minute walk to the main square: Plaza de Armas!
If you want to sleep comfortable and support a good cause take a close look at the website of Dutch foundation Niños in Cusco. All the revenues of this Niños hotel are going directly to the foundation!
This accommodation in Lima is perfect for travellers on a budget. The accommodation offers a traditional Peruvian breakfast every morning and is only 2 kilometers away from the well known neighbourhood Miraflores.
Take a look at this accommodation in Lima If you are looking for a place that feels like your own home. Log in with this link, because if you don’t have an Airbnb account yet to get a $20,- dollar discount![/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]