A Dramatic Landscape

Peru is a large country, and encompasses an array of dramatic landscapes. A Peruvian tour may include high mountains, sandy beaches, and sweltering jungle. The long coast of Peru is studded with cliffs and hills, and there are some beautiful beaches on the northern end for travelers interested in surfing and sunbathing. The southern coast recedes into a desert, with stunning sand dunes in parts. Adventurous travelers wonít want to miss the Colca Canyon, which is also found in southern Peru, near the beautiful white city of Arequipa.

Peru is probably most well known for its Andean region. This impressive mountain system bisects the country from north to south. There are two parallel ranges, the Cordillera Occidental and the Cordillera Oriental. The Andes are at their widest on the Altiplano and at their highest on the peak of Huascaran, which reaches to a dizzying 22,500 ft. Travelers to Peru looking for a mountaineering experience are well-accommodated here. A large portion of Peruís population is settled in the valleys and basins of the Andes.

The southern basin of the Andes along the Bolivian border cradles Lake Titicaca, the highest lake in the world. Active and dormant volcanoes are also found in this region.

The Amazon jungle occupies the eastern edge of Peru, with the mighty riverís headwaters located in the town of Iquitos. The northern part of the jungle is known as the selva alta, while the southern regions, with their river terraces and rolling plains, are called the selva baja. The Peruvian rainforest is dense and remote, accessible in areas only by river.