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Peru Travel Guide

Peru Travel Guide

Find out our co-founder’s favorites from the country she considers her second home

I have been traveling to Peru since the mid ‘70s, and I like to think of Peru as my second home. It isn't just a travel destination for me; it's a cherished part of my personal family story…a place at different times in my life where I have lived and a country I will always return to further explore.  Each visit a source of new inspiration.

The diversity of the Peruvian landscape, and the rich multicultural tapestry of its people, is unparalleled. Peru encompasses three distinct regions: the desert, the Andean highlands, and the jungle. Each region is a universe unto itself.

 The desert region, with its arid plains and ancient archaeological sites, holds echoes of past civilizations and the enigma of its pre-Incan legacy slowly unraveling over time. Moving into the highlands of the Andes, one encounters towering peaks, the enchanting city of Cuzco, and the indigenous communities nestled in remote corners off the beaten path. And within the lush embrace of the jungle, a realm of biodiversity thrives, where the harmonious rhythms of nature both enchant and inspire.

When I first partnered with Johnnie, our shared interest in Peru led us to embark on several journeys together. Recently, we traveled to the altiplano near Puno, where alpacas roam freely at 13,000 feet above sea level. By committing to exclusively utilizing alpaca fiber in our coats, Bela Monde aims to align our values of sustainability and ethical production with support for those whose livelihood depends on Peru's local economy. These communities steadfastly preserve their traditions and culture, embodying a spirit of endurance and preservation that we deeply value.

Peru isn't just a travel destination for me; it's a cherished part of both my personal family story and the Bela Monde story. Inspired by its landscape, history, and people, I am thrilled to share some of my favorite spots – from charming hotels and delectable restaurants to must-see sights –  with you here. My hope is that you will fall in love with this country and its people…as I have.

My Favorite Spots


Stay at Hotel B

Address: Jirón Sáenz Peña 204, Barranco 15063, Lima, Peru

What I love: Hotel B is close to the sea, and near the best shopping in Miraflores. 

Make Lima more than a necessary stopover from the US or Europe on your way to Machu Picchu.  Visit the wonderful museums dedicated to textiles and pre-Incan culture. The Museo Larco houses the largest private collection of Pre Incan art.  The neighborhood of Barranco is lovely for walking around where you will find a promenade that overlooks the Pacific . Also plenty of boutiques and art galleries.  

Stop by MATE…Museo Mario Testino. It houses the contemporary photography collection of this world famous fashion and celebrity photographer.  In neighboring Miraflores, have a cappuccino at Cafe Haiti, a legendary establishment on the main square. It's the perfect spot to sit and absorb the street scene.

Lima is world renowned for its fresh seafood and it's truly a culinary delight  to dine  in Lima.  For ceviche, El Mercado in Miraflores is one of my favorites. It’s open only during the day from 12:30-5:00 pm, so plan accordingly.

Canta Rana is a more budget-friendly alternative, and within walking distance of Hotel B in Barranco. I love the atmosphere as well as the food (it’s a favorite with locals, too!).


Stay at Hotel La Hosteria 

Address: Bolivar 405 - Cercado, Arequipa, 4001 Peru

What I love: Surround yourself in cascading bougainvillea, staying in a 300 year old colonial mansion that now is a lovely 29 room hotel in the historic center of Arequipa. 

Visit the historic center of Arequipa and the surrounding Colca Canyon. Arequipa is a lesser known city with tourists yet its colonial center has retained its original charm and has plenty of outdoor activities within a few hours drive. Hike the Colca Canyon, twice as deep as the Grand Canyon and a viewpoint to watch for Condor’s…the world’s largest flying bird


Stay at Hotel Monasterio

Address: Nazarenas 337, Cuzco 08002, Peru 

What I love: What I love: A stone throw from the Plaza de Armas and the historic center of Cuzco. Hotel Monaterio’s meticulously adorned chambers exude the grandeur of its colonial past, weaving an enchanting tapestry of history and luxury throughout its ancient walls.

Discover the tranquil beauty of the Sacred Valley with a few nights' stay before your Machu Picchu expedition. Its terraced landscapes and scattered Incan ruins offer a glimpse into the rich heritage of the Incan culture that still resonates today. There’s weekly handicraft markets in Pisac and Chincheros. 


Stay at :Tambopata Research Center. 

A trip to the jungle is more than a jungle adventure, It's an essential experience for anyone interested in fostering an understanding about why the Amazon is so important to our planet learning about and its  conservation. Start by taking a flight from Cuzco to Puerto Maldonado. Once there, immerse yourself in the wonders of the Amazon by staying at the Tambopata Research Center. Here, amidst the breathtaking beauty of the rainforest, you'll encounter a paradise teeming with vibrant macaws and all eight species of primates found within the national reserve. You will return home transformed and enlightened.

Don’t Miss

For those wanting a few days by the beach: Mancora (going north from Lima) is known for its great surfing. Punto Hermosa (going south from Lima, towards Nazca) is a traditional upscale beach resort area, and great for relaxing.

Lake Titicaca has one of the highest navigable lakes in the world and a cultural center for the outlying indigenous communities in the region.


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