Located in the heart of South America, Peru is one of the most popular destinations for travelers these days. Let's find out exactly what Peru is known for and why you're going to want to book a trip there right now!
Over the past decade, Peru's tourism has grown drastically, with millions of people visiting the country every year. If you've heard, read, or are curious about the magical land of Peru, then this is exactly the article you were looking for!
After traveling to Peru, I realized that it's so much more than just Machu Picchu, although that's seriously impressive too. The culture, food, textiles, animals, people, and the many jaw-dropping archeological sites and gorgeous landmarks make this country one of my favorite places on Earth! Peru is a country full of hidden gems.
In just a few minutes, you'll understand everything that Peru is known for, and I'm guessing you'll be packing your bags and booking a flight to Peru in no time!
What Is Peru Best Known For?
What do you think of when you think of Peru? Machu Picchu? Llamas? Colorful sweaters? Peru has so much to offer, and if you've never been before, you'll be surprised by some of the seriously cool things on this list! So, let's dive in.
Delicious Food & Drink
First things first, Peru has delicious cuisine! Peruvian food isn't necessarily one of the most popular on the planet, but once you visit and try it, you're going to wish there was a Peruvian restaurant in your hometown.
Here are some great Peruvian delights you should try:
- Ceviche: Raw Fish with Lime
- Aji de Gallina: Chicken Stew
- Papas a la Huancaína: Potatoes in Spicy Cheese Sauce
- Papa Rellena: Stuffed Potato Croquette
- Pisco: a drink made from grapes but tastes like tequila
What is Peru known for? Their vibrant textiles! You've probably noticed the brightly colored clothing the indigenous people wear. These men and women you see brightly dressed are members of several tribes within the Inca community. They have been making and wearing this colorful clothing for centuries.
The women are traditionally the weavers, using natural ingredients such as plants and insects to dye the alpaca and llama wool. They produce the wonderfully bright colors you see. In reality, even though they wear the clothes, they are truly considered an art form and are cherished by all who wear them.
If you're looking for the perfect souvenir from Peru, I recommend finding a local woman weaving a piece of clothing. You can choose an item that you know she's made from start to finish. Some travelers wear these beautiful garments, or you could hang them in your home as a Peruvian keepsake.
When it comes to the animals, there are some seriously cool species to see in Peru!
The first animal you'll see when arriving would probably be a llama or an alpaca. As you now know, Peruvians use their wool to make textiles such as art and clothing, but both species are also domesticated to be used for tasks like carrying tools, wood, materials, and water through the mountains.
One of my favorite memories from Peru was when I saw a local woman standing in line at the pharmacy and then getting into a taxi with her llama by her side!
Peru is also home to condors, jaguars, pumas, dolphins, bears, sloths, and dozens of beautiful birds. Whether or not you get to see all these magnificent creatures will depend on how off-the-beaten-track you're planning to go.
Peru has some of the most beautiful and diverse landmarks I've ever visited. If you have time to hit them all, you're going to love every single one.
Try visiting some of these natural wonders while you're there:
- Vinicunca, also known as Rainbow Mountain
- Colca Canyon
- Lake 69
- Lake Titicaca
- Amazon Rainforest
- Dunes of Huacachina
Between traveling to all these amazing natural sites in Peru, you'll have to pop into some of the country's most vibrant cities! Although you'll likely fly into Lima, don't forget to check out Cusco, Arequipa, Iquitos, and Huaraz.
Each city offers a slightly different vibe, food, and culture. Whichever city you have the opportunity to explore, be assured that they're all worth seeing and experiencing if you have the time. Every city and region boasts unique traits that Peru is known for.
Last but certainly not least, Peru is well known for its awe-inspiring archeological sites. But before we get to the most famous site, there are a couple of others you may not have heard of.
The Nazca Lines
The Nazca lines have to be seen to be believed. They were only discovered in the 1920s when planes flew over the area for the first time. To this day, the only way to see them is by plane.
Huge markings cover the rocks depicting animals, such as hummingbirds and monkeys. One of the most interesting aspects of the lines is that no one really knows who made them!
The Sacred Valley
The Sacred Valley is one of Peru's natural beauties. But because it's home to so many incredible archeological wonders, I decided to put it in this category.
You can plan to stay in the Sacred Valley to explore all it has to offer. Another option is to walk through the valley if you decide to hike the Inca Trail on the way to Machu Picchu. In the valley, you'll find ancient sites such as Maras & Moray and Wiñay Wayna.
Finally, let's talk about Machu Picchu! The incredibly famous Inca site in what Peru is best known for. The ruins of an ancient community tucked away in the hills of Cusco, Machu Picchu is one of the Seven Wonders of the World.
You can either get there by hiking with a tour group through the Inca Trail or taking a train to the base, where you can walk up a few stairs the next day. But no matter how you plan to do it, you must book your entrance ticket ahead of time.
They only allow a certain number of visitors daily. You'd hate to go all that distance only to get turned away at the entrance.
Planning Your Trip to Peru!
Are you getting excited about going to Peru and experiencing this magical country for yourself? While you're packing, planning, and booking everything to get to Peru, why not make use of a handy travel app such as Pilot to keep tabs on your itinerary?