Peru Travel Information
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Clinging to the Andes, between the parched coastal desert and the lush expanse of the Amazon rainforest, Peru offers such a wide range of experiences that it can be difficult to choose one between them. Solemn pilgrimages honor gods both Christian and indigenous. Neon-lit discos get jam-packed with reveling youth and not so young. Ancient ruins & complexes divulge prehistoric secrets. There are endless museums to visit, lakes to ogle, waves to surf,
labyrinthine cities to explore. This is a country where practices run deep – 5,000 years, to be exact. Yet, it is a place continuously energized by fresh influences. In Peru, you can groove to African beats, admire impressive Catholic churches and examine indigenous textiles inspired by pre-Columbian traditions. Meanwhile, prepare to send your vision (and camera) into overdrive. Peru is home to huge snow-capped mountains, giant sand dunes, flocks of brightly hued tropical birds, postcard-perfect volcanoes and rocky Pacific outcroppings inhabited by argumentative sea lions. And let's not forget the food – a bounty of sublime concoctions made from ingredients native and contemporary. You'll need months to savor the vast selection of delicacies: from rare strains of potato to Cuy (Peruvian guinea pig) to succulent ocean mollusks like Pota (giant squid).
With an area of 1'385,215 square km., Peru is the third largest country in South America (after Brazil and Argentina), ranking it amongst the world's 20 largest nations. Peru also holds sway over the sea up to 200 miles (350 km) from the Peruvian coast and has territorial rights to an area of 60 million hectares (or 600,000 km2) in the Territorio Antartico Peruano (or TAP) in the Antarctica. Peru is divided into 25 regions. Lima is the capital city of Peru.
Population: 33'000,000 inhabitants.
- Urban: 72,3 %
- Rural: 27,7 %
Peru is a nation of mixed ethnic origins. Throughout its history, Peru has been the paradise dreamed, the meeting ground & the melting pot for different nations, peoples & cultures. The indigenous population was joined 500 years ago by the Spaniards and after that, the Europeans in general.
As a result of this encounter, and later enriched by the migration of African blacks, Asians and more Europeans, the Peruvian nation emerged as the representative of a country whose rich ethnic mix is one of its leading characteristics and base of its powerful attraction.
- Spanish: 80,3%.
- Quechua: 11,2%.
- Other Native languages: 3,0%.
- Foreign languages: 5,5%.
- Roman Catholic: 75,03%
- Evangelic Protestants: 18,73%
- Other religions: 2,56%
- Any Religion: 1.65%
GEOGRAPHY CLIMATE OF PERU
Peru is divided into 3 big main regions. Although this simple division is a fair portrait of Peru's geography, the reality is much richer and far more complex: in Peru, nature appears to have taken on particular characteristic which have turned its mountains, plains, jungles and valleys into unique habitats. An extraordinary variety of ecosystems shelters a wide diversity of animals and plants.
The Peruvian Coast: Which features deserts, beautiful beaches and fertile valleys... The Peruvian coastline is formed by a long snaking desert hemmed in between the sea and the mountains. The Andes to the east & the cold Peruvian Humboldt sea current of the Pacific Ocean that runs along the coast are what make this area so arid. From the Sechura Desert to the Nasca plains and the Atacama Desert, the dry coastal terrain is occasionally split by valleys covered by a thick layer of cloud and drizzle in the winter. Humidity in these areas produces a sensation of cold, although temperatures rarely dip below 12°C. During the summer, meanwhile, the sun beats down and temperatures often top 30°C. The central and southern sections of the coast feature two well-defined seasons: winter from April to November, and summer from December to March. The north coast, meanwhile, is not touched by the effects of the cold current, which means it enjoys 300 days of sunshine a year, and warm temperatures all year-long (as much as 35°C in the summer). The rainy season (especially in the highlands) runs from December to March.
The Peruvian Andes: A mountainous area dominated by the Andes, where Mount Huascaran being the top of Peru, soars to 6,768 meters. In the Peruvian highlands, there are two well-defined seasons: the dry season (from April to November), marked by sunny days, cold nights and the lack of rain (the ideal time for visiting); and the rainy season (December to March), when there are frequent rain showers (generally more than 1,000 mm). A characteristic of the mountain region is the drop in temperature during the day: temperatures commonly range around 24°C at midday, before plunging to -3°C at night. The steep slopes of the Andes means temperatures gradually drop in the highest region, known as the Puna, the highland plains. The dry and pleasant climate in the highlands makes it possible to grow a wide variety of crops there.
The Peruvian Amazon Jungle: A vast region of tropical vegetation in the Amazon River Basin, home to Peru's largest natural reserves. The vast Peruvian jungle, which surrounds the wide and winding Amazon river, is divided into two different areas: the Cloud Forest (above 850 m.a.s.l), which features a subtropical, balmy climate, with heavy rain showers (around 3,000mm a year) between December & March, and sunny days from April to November; and the Lowland Jungle (below 850 m.a.s.l), where the dry season runs from April to November and is ideal for tourism, with sunshine and high temperatures often topping 35°C. During this season, the river levels dip and roads are easy to drive. The rainy season, meanwhile, which runs from December to March, features frequent rain showers (at least once a day) which can damage roads in the area. The jungle features high humidity all year long. In the southern jungle, there are sometimes cold spells known locally as "friajes" or "surazos", cold fronts which drift up from the far south of the continent between May and August, where temperatures can drop from 12 to 8°C. Note: To calculate Fahrenheit degrees temperatures: 9/5 (ºC) + 32.
PERU INFORMATION BY DESTINATION