Home is Where Your Passport is: Peru - Following in The Footsteps of The Incas 4 years ago

Home is Where Your Passport is: Peru - Following in The Footsteps of The Incas

Some of us are programmed to explore, others are programmed to dream. Regardless of which category you fall into, there is a whole world out there just waiting to be discovered.

Her.ie’s new weekly travel guide brings you to some of the most inspiring places in the world and dares you to turn those dreams into an adventure of a lifetime.

As the saying goes, ‘home is where your passport is’ – so where will your passport end up next?

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Peru

Steeped in history and culture, Peru has been attracting thousands of visitors each year. Birthplace to the great Inca civilisation, modern day Peru defines itself by its past and old and new go hand-in-hand through the winding streets.

Relax in the heat of Mancora or trek through the trails of the Incas near Cuzco – whatever you decide to do, Peru will capture your heart and embed itself under your skin and into your soul.

One visit will never be enough, the haunting legacy of the Incas will always call you back for more, and every time you go back, there is something even more amazing to discover.

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Machu Picchu

You cannot leave Peru without visiting the great Inca ruins at Machu Picchu. Nestled deep in the surrounds of a misty forest, Machu Picchu is a must-see for anyone who visits.

Trek the Inca trail up to the stunning ruins and take in the jaw-dropping scenery and intricate Inca displays.

Handy tip: If you are not up to the full Inca trail trek, there are shorter options available including getting a bus most of the way up.

Machu Picchu, lost city of the Incas, Cuzco, Peru. Image shot 05/2013. Exact date unknown.

Cuzco

Cuzco is the city base where you stay while paying a trip to Machu Picchu, however make sure that your stay in Cuzco is extended a little bit more than just Machu Picchu as there is plenty to see and do there.

Handy hint: Get ice-cream on the main square from one of the vendors – it’s definitely worth it. Also, if you are looking for a cheaper option than the hotels the Loki Hostel is a winner.

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Lake Titicaca

Lake Titicaca will be one of the highlights of your trip to Peru. The lake falls between the borders of Bolivia and Peru and boast stunning views and dazzling vistas.

Handy hint: Take a trip to the lake’s island, Isla del Sol, and use an afternoon to trek over it – it is worth every minute.

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Máncora

The perfect spot to head to in Peru after all the trekking and travelling, Mancora is the home for beach lovers. The sun is nearly always shining in Máncora and the surf is always up.

Handy hint: Loki hostels again win in Máncora, with cheap and cheerful rooms and super friendly staff.

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Nazca Lines

The Nazca lines are located in southern Peru and are shallow lines in the ground that depict images of animals, birds, trees and flowers. The best way to see them is by chartering a flight over them, but be careful and make sure you book through a well-known company.

Handy hint: Can’t afford the flight? Head to the nearby hilltops and you’ll get an idea of the view!

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Lima

Peru’s capital city is often branded as a disappointment for many visitors, but despite its bad reviews there is still plenty to see and do there. Usually shrouded in fog, you need to get out and about in Lima to truly appreciate its beauty.

From superb museums to fantastic archietecture, the main highlight of Lima is definitely the food!

Handy hint: Stay in the Miraflores area of the city.

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Road Trip

If you have the luxury of time in Peru, make sure you take it. The coast from Lima up to Máncora is well worth a few stops along the way. With more hidden ruins and national parks along the way, places like Trujillo and Chiclayo are worth a stop en route.

Handy hint: Book your spot on the fantastic bus services in Peru – ‘Cama’ is basically a first class ticket (the seat reclines) while ‘semi-cama’ is the next grade down (half reclining seat). It’s definitely worth the money for ‘cama’ as most of the journeys are quite long.

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Arequipa

The second largest city in Peru, Arequipa boasts beautiful cityscapes and stunning architecture. The city is also best known for producing one of the most famous and influential novelists, Mario Vargas Llosa.

Handy hint:  The stunning colca canyon is nearby and definitely worth a visit even with an incredibly early start!

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Insider's tip:

If you are anything like us, your visit to Peru will see you trying the local dish Lomo Saltado at some stage. We practically turned into lomo saltado during our stay. Absolutely delicious!