What To Do In Peru?

No ideas on what to do in Peru? Here are the top 15 things to do in Peru apart from Inca Trail and Machu Picchu.

Most tourists believe that the only place you can visit while in Peru is Machu Picchu. The truth of the matter is that the Inca Trail and Machu Picchu are not the only places you can explore when visiting Peru. So many people have fallen in love with these common sites until they can’t think of any other things to do in Peru. However, we can list Peru among the most magical countries in the world other than the famous and incredible archeological site. We have a very long list of things to do in Peru for any visitor.

It goes without saying that Machu Picchu and its surroundings form the most beautiful scenes in Peru. In fact, a trip to Peru without including Machu Picchu on the list is an incomplete one. The site has become prominent in the minds of many local and international tourists. This article focuses on other activities you can undertake while in Peru. Though we may not be in a position to explain each destination in detail, you will have a general overview of what to expect in Peru.

Top Things To Do In Peru

Below are the TOP 15 things to do in Peru that you should not miss it.

what to do in peru

(Photo Credit: letstravelsomewhere)

#1: Birds Watching at the Colca Canyon

Colca Canyon is located in southern Peru and is a very popular tourist attraction center within the region. There is a possibility that you have never heard of this tourist destination. In fact, the Colca Canyon is two times deeper than the most famous Grand Canyon in the world. The world’s famous Grand Canyon is in the United States.

The only undoing with the southern Peru Colca Canyon is that it does not have steep walls. It is why the Colca Canyon is not so visually striking. The site forms a very decent home for Andean Condor, which falls among the largest birds globally. These birds have a wingspan that goes up to 3.2 meters. There are very few such types of scenery on the earth where you can view birds at a very close range. If you want to have a magical bird’s view experience, just visit the southern Peru’s Colca Canyon.

#2: Flying Over the Nazca Lines

You could be wondering what Nazca lines are if you are hearing about them for the first time. They comprise a series of hundreds of fine design lines that represent artistic digging in the ground. It is the work of the Nazca culture that has been in existence for over a millennium. The lines range from highly stylized images to simple geometric shapes that depict the pictures of animals and plants from the natural world. The best way to view the Nazca lines is from above because some of them have been in existence for over two hundred years. We have so many tour operators in Peru who offer flights above the Nazca lines just in case you wish to view them.

#3: Simply Relax or Surf in Mancora

If you have a good schedule for your trip, you can allocate some time relaxing on the beach. Mancora forms an excellent site for relaxing and surfing. However, you should not include this on your to-do list if you are in a hurry. You can use a few days to surf, sand, and sun sound up your alley in the laid-back surfing town of Mancora. The town is relatively small, but it has enough dining and lodging options that cut across all budgets. You will be in a position to enjoy the beach in a similar manner the Peruvians do.

things to do in peru

#4: Take a Buggy Ride and Sandboard in Huacachina  

Some people think that Huacachina is in the Sahara desert, but the truth of the matter is that the scene is in Peru. Huacachina shares the same southwestern Peruvian province with the traditional Nazca lines. The small oasis village in the parched desert remains to be a highly valued center of tourism attraction in Peru. Huacachina remains to be undoubtedly cool despite the fact that the nearby city of Ica supplies additional water to the region. The main recreational activities that occur in this oasis of the American’s include buggy riding and sandboarding. You can include this on your list, and you will not have any regrets while visiting Peru.

#5: Experience an Islas Ballestas Boat Tour

Islas Ballestas is a small group of tiny islands that have tremendous global recognition as biodiversity hotspots. The islands are rich in bird species like the Humboldt penguins and blue-footed boobies. The islands also have sea lions, seals, and other beautiful and charming animal species in the world. You can have an excellent view of these creatures when you visit the Islas Ballestas. You can also enjoy a two-hour drive from boats living the neighboring coastal town of Paracas. This island is among the coolest things you can do while visiting Peru.

#6: Have a Shopping Experience at the Peruvian Marketplace

The Andean region in Peru is very famous when it comes to its shopping experience. This marketplace serves both the locals and visitors very well. You can purchase some souvenirs for friends and family members or keepsake for yourself while in Peru. You should skip the brick and motor stores first and go to the market stalls. There are so many marketplaces in the Andean homes than any other place in the world. The most famous market place is in the small town of Pisac. Some people view the region as too touristy, but it is an excellent short half-day destination from Cusco.

#7: Pay a visit to Lake Titicaca’s Floating Islands

Several reasons make Lake Titicaca very famous within the region. The first thing is that it is the largest lake in South America. Secondly, Lake Titicaca is the highest navigable lake all over the world and has a funny name for English native speakers. This lake is a great home for the pre-Incan Uru people. The inhabitants comprise of indigenous groups that have the most incredible ways of living. They reside on the floating islands that are either built or rebuilt from dried reeds that drift over the lake surface. This way of living was an old defensive strategy, but the lifestyle continues to persist even though the security threats are long overdue. Most visitors make tours to the island and take part in the homestays with the natives. We have so many homestay activities that you can participate in as a visitor.

#8: Have a View of the Otherworldly Maras Salt Ponds

Most people don’t know this cultural and historical site that is not far from Cusco. You can take a whole day trip visiting the town of Mara. It’s good to note that this is a city that is pretty slow. You can view the bizarre scene from the flight, but this is just a small portion of the extensive salt ponds that the Mara residents use to earn a living. The local population uses the evaporation method to extract salt from the ponds. Salt extraction from ponds is an ancient practice that assists you to understand the history of Peru.

#9: Have an Exploration of the Peruvian Amazon 

Very few people can think about the Amazon rainforest without their mind immediately jumping to Brazil. The truth of the matter is that South America has the largest share of the Amazon. However, the region does not provide the best scenery for visiting the rainforest. It is better to visit Peru when it comes to the Amazon adventure. You will come across Iquitos which is the largest city globally that has no outside road access. The Peruvian Amazon is home to so many tourists every year because it has many architectural and historical wonders. However, the biggest draw for the region is its biodiversity and stunning nature.

#10: Get some Insight in the Belen District

Most people refer to the Belen district as the “Venice of the Amazon”. The region lies on the central floodplain of the Amazon River tributary and to the outside of Iquitos. Given that necessity is the mother of all innovation, the locals of this area reside in beautiful floating houses. Most people did not want to live in this region because of the constant annual floods. Though the district is economically weak, we have outstanding feet of constructions taking place. Some visitors avoid this area because they view it as “slum tourism”. However, some people visit this place to contribute to the income of the residents. When you visit this area, you should go during the day and use trustworthy local guides.

#11: Climb the Mist Volcano

Another item you should not miss on the things to do in Peru is climbing the Mist Volcano. Peru has a broad range of climbing, trekking, and hiking options. If your hobby falls on this list, then Peru is the best place you should be thinking of visiting. The Mist Volcano in the southern part of Peru remains to be among the best tourist attraction sites in the region. You should note that this is not a very comfortable climbing experience. The shortest two routes to the summit take you close to two thousand meters of elevation gain. The other thing is that most of the climbing is on the loose region’s volcanic sand. You don’t require any technical mountaineering skills to go through the climb. Most of those who visit the site can confirm that it is indeed an inspiring experience.

#12: Wonder Tucume: The Valley of Pyramids for Peru

The Wonder Tucume is an abandoned dry valley that is home to mound structures and twenty-six pyramids in Peru. These structures have been in existence for over eight hundred years. It’s a primary source of apprehension and fear among the native population. Most of them refer to it as “Purgatory” which is a Spanish word that means the Valley is under a curse. However, most visitors don’t believe in such imaginations. The locals keep on building and rebuilding pyramids in an attempt to appease their gods. However, this system does not appear to be working in any way. Currently, the Valley serves as an archaeological site that is very popular with historical buffs and hiking. There is a small hotel adjacent to the boundaries of the valley. Therefore, you are not going to remain hungry because the site has no residence.

#13: Discover Chan Chan: The Largest Pre-Colombian City in South America

The challenge with this site is that other ruins sites like Machu Picchu eclipse it in popularity. The ruins complex around the modern day town of Trujillo and you should never visit Peru without making a stopover. Chan Chan was the capital city of the great Chimu Empire and remains to be large basing on current standards. The urban center covered close to six kilometers, and the city stretched further but less densely. The city’s existence was up to the 1470’s after conquering the Incase, and the residents moved out by force. Chan Chan is one of the most beautiful historical cities you can visit while in Peru.

#14: Go through the Walled Fortress of Kuelap

The walled fortress of Kuelap is the last archeological site we recommend you visit while in Peru. Kuelap is in northern Peru, and it was a massively walled city with over four hundred buildings. The buildings were a construction of the Chachapoya culture who are the famously referred to as the “warriors of the cloud”. The fortress ruins are very impressive, and the walls are just amazing. The walls have a size and scope of close to 90 meters in height. The visit to Kuelap is interesting, and you should never miss out on it.

#15: Have a look at the Lima’s Culinary Scene 

It will be meaningless to make a list of things to do in Peru without giving you an opportunity to taste some of the region’s best sceneries. Lima is not only the largest but also the capital city of Peru. Lima is a home to the most exciting, innovative, and delicious culinary scenes in the entire region of Latin America. You can get very nice restaurants among other places. Take time to visit the city extensively before going back home. Even though we have so many places you can visit while in Peru, this marks the end of the top 15 things to do in Peru.


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