In recent years Peru has gradually moved away from being almost soley a Machu Picchu destination, yet it seems much of the travel world has not kept pace with this development. I have visited Peru three times in the last six years and witnessed the inspiring development of its own unique high end experiential travel industry. We love Peru for many reasons including its outstanding cuisine, its 11 UNESCO World Heritage sites that include Machu Picchu, the City of Cusco, the Historic Centres of Lima and Arequipa, its brilliant cutting edge boutique hotels many of which practice environmental sustainablilty, its wonderful Incan and Pre Incan history and its maintenance and restoration of its colonial cities.
A few years back Ferran Adria from El Bulli in Spain said “Peru is fostering the world’s next gastronomic revolution” The following year Peru was awarded the world´s leading culinary destination and Lima is without doubt the food capital of South America. Lima’s renown culinary excellence has seen the achievement of two Lima restaurants listed in the top 10 of the top 50 Restaurants of The World in 2018. Amazing biodiversity, an incredible variety of local ingredients, pre-Columbian and Spanish culinary traditions mixed with influences from all over the world have combined with the creativity of local chefs like Virgilio Martinez, to create a unique and extraordinary Peruvian cuisine.
On my second visit to Peru in 2017 I was privileged to travel with my Peruvian colleagues to the Colca Canyon which is twice the depth of the Grand Canyon and still steeped in the traditions of the past with locals still practicing ancient farming techniques and spiritual rituals.
Adding to all this Belmond and Peru Rail in May 2017 opened a new luxury rail journey from Cusco to Lake Titicaca and on to Arequipa with the opportunity for a side trip to the Colca Canyon. This luxury train with some of its carriages hailing originally from the Far North Queensland’s Great South Pacific Express, will change the experience of travelling to somewhat remote destinations like Colca and Lake Titicaca.
The other reason we’re wild about Peru is it is only a twelve hour direct flight from Australia into Santiago in Chile with connecting flights onto Lima. Peru is a must see destination for those who love culinary and cultural adventure.