Peru’s highlights: the cazenove+loyd way
At cazenove+loyd, we like to do things differently, and our approach to creating holidays in Peru is a great example of this. Peru has something for everyone: incredible scenery, fascinating history, great gastronomy, rich culture, and world-class hotels. It is a country of true variety, but this of course means that it’s very popular amongst visitors. We like to use adventure as a way to experience the sites from a different angle and without the crowds.
The Royal Inca Trail is undoubtedly Peru’s most well-known trek, and for good reason. Not only do you walk in the footsteps of Inca nobility, you get to enjoy some incredible scenery along the way, from dramatic mountain passes to isolated ruins. At cazenove+loyd, we suggest the combining the Lares Trek with the one-day Inca Trail as a lesser known, yet equally spectacular, alternative to the full five-day Inca Trail. By combining these two treks, you get the best of both worlds. You get to see rural Peru at its finest, and without seeing many other people along the way, whilst still being able to walk through the famous Sun Gate to Machu Picchu. The Inca Trail is fabulous, but if, like us, you like something a little off the beaten track with relatively few tourists, then the combination of these two treks is the ideal option.
The Sacred Valley is home to some incredibly breathtaking scenery. The valley is especially known for the ruins and market at Pisac, and the impressive steps at Ollantaytambo. However, the are a number of smaller, yet equally charming, archaeological sites and villages to visit. One of our favourite ways to really get under the skin of the Sacred Valley, is by starting your day with some stand up paddle boarding on Lake Huaypo. This is not only a great opportunity to grasp this incredibly fun sport, but it is the perfect opportunity to enjoy the peace and quiet and take in your surroundings. We then suggest heading to the colonial village of Maras, famous for its unique door arches, for an afternoon hike. You will take an old mule trail downhill to the incredible salt-pans, which cover the whole of the hill-side creating a stunning white landscape. This is just one example of how we use adventure to experience a different side of the Sacred Valley.
Cycling is a fantastic way to see a country. For those who enjoy gentle exercise and plentiful fresh air, we suggest cycling the Inca ruins of Cusco. The archaeological sites of Tambomachay and Sacsayhuaman are must sees within Cusco and why not visit them by bike, rather than by car like everybody else. You will travel through the stunning countryside in-between ruins and will get a sense of how each Inca site was not isolated but was in fact part of a much wider network. You will end the ride with a descent into the Plaza de Armas in the centre of Cusco, in good time for a well-deserved bite to eat.
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