Jessica Griscavage takes you through her trip to Peru!
Off to Peru I go… how to get there? I took the overnight flight (2:00AM) from Miami to Lima arriving at approximately 6:40AM. I spent my morning at the Belmond Miraflores Park which is an outstanding hotel. Taking my own advice I arranged a spa appointment to relax and get over jet lag. After a wonderful lunch I had a private tour of Lima to learn as much about the city as I could in such a short amount of time. Money and time well spent.
After an early (and short) flight from Lima we arrived Cusco. This is where the adventure begins. I have the pleasure to be traveling with our Virtuoso partners G Adventures and learn about their Planeterra initiative. This is a global movement to make tourism sustainable, to minimize impacts on the environment, local people and cultures and offer economic benefits to local businesses and communities. Click here to learn about this amazing project. The second stop was for lunch at Parwa which is another Planaterra project. This is a community run restaurant to provide access to the tourism market for the first time to a small village. Learn more here . Our farm to table lunch was delicious. Fun fact – did you know there are 3500 varieties of potatoes in Peru? Our day ended with our first glimpse of the Sacred Valley – all I can say is WOW!
Today I had a full day of touring the amazing Sacred Valley. The three major highlights included the pre-Inca salt pans of LasSalineras, Ollantaytamboand Moray Ruins. In this area there are two fabulous Virtuoso hotels to consider – Sol Y Luna and the Belmond Rio Sagrado.
– Machu Picchu is built on 2 fault lines. However, the construction protects itwhenever Peru suffers an earthquake. The stones of Machu Picchu are reputed to “dance” or bounce during an earthquake and then fall back into their rightful place.
– Most visitors race to arrive before dawn to be one of the first 400 people eligible to climb the famed Huayna Picchu peak. But lesser known is Machu Picchu Mountain, which lies at the opposite end of the site and is twice as tall at 1,640.
– In 1911, Hiram Bingham was a history professor intent on finding the last place where the Incas of Vilcabamba were. Guided by a young boy from Mandorpampa, Bingham arrived at the ruins and thought this is the place where the Incas were established after losing their territory. It wasn’t until after his death in the 1950s that the real Vilcabamba was discovered further west of Machu Picchu citadel.
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