Introduction to Peru
Welcome to the Inca Empire! Peru is a country of unparalleled beauty and diversity. Situated in South America’s west, Peru is bordered in the north by Ecuador and Columbia, to the east by Brazil, the south by Chile and flanked by the Pacific Ocean. It’s no surprise people from all over the world come to Peru to marvel at the ancient Incan civilisation of Machu Picchu but the wonder doesn’t stop there – the gastronomy, the colourful textiles, the llamas roaming free in the streets and the colonial architecture are all a drawcard.
Peru is a diverse country with a rich and colourful tapestry of ancient cultures and traditions. Its impressive landscapes sweep from the rugged Andes mountain ranges to tropical beaches and the lush depths of the Peruvian Amazon. Although Peru is rich with natural resources, the poverty scale reaches 27 percent of the population of 29.5 million people. The rich, mostly Hispanic elite live in the cities but you’ll witness a great sense of pride from the country’s poorer, rural dwellers who keep the country running with their farming and beautiful handicrafts.
Peru’s capital city, Lima, overlooks the Pacific Ocean and is considered the fifth largest city in the Americas. It’s also home to one of the oldest higher learning institutions in the world, The National University of San Marcos - founded in 1551. Academia seems to flow in the waters here as the city is also home to many of South America’s most renowned museums and galleries. The Spanish Baroque and Neoclassical periods influenced much of the architecture in Lima and a walk around the city will have you feeling like you’ve stepped right into an Art Nouveau postcard. Head to the Miraflores neighbourhood for shopping, lush green spaces and beaches to sprawl out on.
Step back in time and explore the mystery and intrigue that surrounds the country’s Incan ruins. Experience the contemporary city of Lima with its exotic food and excellent museums. The real beauty here is often seen in the small villages where even the poorest of Peruvians have a wide smile and a colourful poncho.