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Peru's 18 Best Tourist Spots

Discover Peru: A Land of Rich Culture, History, and Adventure

Peru offers a tapestry of vibrant experiences, from the iconic Machu Picchu to the depths of the Amazon. It's a place where you can sail on the world's highest navigable lake, explore deep canyons, sandboard in vast dunes, and trek the Andes. Beyond the ancient wonders, Peru invites you to immerse yourself in its living culture, whether in the bustling streets of Lima or the mystical Sacred Valley.

For a comprehensive guide to the best sights in Peru, visit top tourist attractions in Peru.

Discover the finest accommodations at the best hotels in Peru, and for beach enthusiasts, explore the best beaches in Peru.

1. Machu Picchu

Machu Picchu

Set 300 meters above the Urubamba River, Machu Picchu captivates with its ancient grandeur and breathtaking mountain scenery. The journey to this Inca masterpiece is as mesmerizing as the destination, whether by train from Cusco or on foot via the Inca Trail. Remember to book your visit through the official site and adhere to the park's regulations.

2. The Inca Trail

The Inca Trail

The Inca Trail, culminating at Machu Picchu, is a four-day trek through stunning landscapes and past ancient ruins. It's a challenging but rewarding journey that requires booking with an agency well in advance, especially during the peak season from June to August.

3. Cusco's Architectural Treasures

Cusco's Architectural Treasures

Cusco, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is a living museum where Inca foundations support colonial buildings. The city's heart is the Plaza de Armas, surrounded by historic structures like the Cathedral and La Compania. Don't miss the church of Santo Domingo, built atop the Inca site of Coricancha.

4. Lake Titicaca

Isla Amantani

Lake Titicaca's azure waters are home to traditional villages and the unique Uros Floating Islands. Explore the cultural richness of the lake's communities and the natural beauty of islands like Isla Taquile and Isla Amantani.

5. Colca Canyon (Cañon del Colca)

Colca Canyon (Cañon del Colca)

Colca Canyon, a marvel of nature, is a deep chasm framed by volcanic peaks. It's a historical landscape, once home to ancient civilizations, and a natural habitat for condors. A visit to the hot springs and local villages enriches the experience.

6. Nazca Lines

Nazca Lines

The enigmatic Nazca Lines, best viewed from the air, are vast geoglyphs etched into the desert. These mysterious figures, including a lizard, condor, and monkey, have puzzled historians and attracted visitors for decades.

7. The Sacred Valley

The Sacred Valley

The Sacred Valley, near Cusco, is a serene region dotted with Inca ruins, markets, and traditional towns. Highlights include the Pisac Ruins, the agricultural terraces of Moray, and the ancient salt mines at Salinas.

8. Ollantaytambo


Ollantaytambo's ruins and fortress are a testament to Inca ingenuity, with a charming village that invites exploration.

9. Arequipa's Historical City Center

Arequipa's Historical City Center

Arequipa, known as the "white city," is celebrated for its sillar stone architecture and serves as a gateway to the Colca Canyon.

10. Puerto Maldonado and the Amazon

Amazon River at Puerto Maldonado

Puerto Maldonado offers a gateway to Amazon adventures, where wildlife abounds and jungle lodges provide immersive experiences.

11. Lima's Historic Center

Lima's Historic Center

Lima's Historic Center is a UNESCO site with colonial architecture and significant landmarks like the Plaza de Armas and the cathedral.

12. Ica and the Sand Dunes at Huacachina

Ica and the Sand Dunes at Huacachina

Ica's Huacachina oasis is a hub for sandboarding and dune buggy adventures amidst towering sand dunes.

13. Pisco and the Ballestas Islands (Islas Ballestas)

Penguins in the Ballestas Islands

Pisco is the starting point for excursions to the wildlife-rich Ballestas Islands and the Paracas National Reserve.

14. Sillustani


Near Lake Titicaca, Sillustani's ancient funerary towers offer a glimpse into the region's pre-Inca cultures.

15. Barranco


Barranco, Lima's bohemian district, charms with its colonial architecture and seaside ambiance.

16. Cordillera Blanca

Cordillera Blanca

The Cordillera Blanca mountain range is a paradise for climbers and hikers, boasting Peru's highest peak, Huascaran.

17. Saqsaywaman


Overlooking Cusco, the formidable Saqsaywaman fortress showcases the Incas' architectural prowess.

18. Salcantay

Humantay Lake on the trek to Salcantay Mountain

The Salcantay Trail offers a breathtaking trek to Machu Picchu, with stunning mountain vistas and soothing hot springs.