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A Peruvian Grandmother’s Act of Kindness

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Covid Update July 2022 – Peru is now open to international travelers. Travelers must show proof of vaccination. Those who are unvaccinated have to show a negative covid-19 test issued up to 48 hours before boarding. Find the complete information on the official website of the Peru government.

A gray-haired lady entered the restaurant and turned her eyes to me instantly. Her gaze didn’t surprise me. During the eight months I had been traveling in South America, I visited indigenous Andean villages and remote islands where the locals had never met someone from India before. My earthy complexion and kohled eyes always raised a plethora of questions about my origin.

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11 Top Things To Do in Peru in 2022 [And My Bonus Secret List]

peruvian ladies observing local life top things to do in peru

Covid Update July 2022 – Peru is now open to international travelers. Travelers must show proof of vaccination. Those who are unvaccinated have to show a negative covid-19 test issued up to 48 hours before boarding. Find the complete information on the official website of Peru government. My guide to Peru Travel Visa would be helpful. Top Things to …

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Manu National Park, Peru [2022] – Daring the Amazon Rainforest

parrots as life partners

Covid-Related Travel Update July 2022 – Peru is now open to international travelers. Travelers must show proof of vaccination. Those who are unvaccinated have to show a negative covid-19 test issued up to 48 hours before boarding. Find the complete information on the official website of the Peru government. My guide to tourist visa for Peru for Indians would be helpful.

An Adventure to the Manu National Park, also known as Parque Nacional Manu, in the Amazon Rainforest Peru

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My Fascination with the Amazon Rainforest and Deciding to go the National Park Manu, Peru

Amazon, the world’s most biodiverse tropical rainforest, covers nine South American countries — Brazil (60% of the Amazon), Peru (13%), Colombia (10%), and the rest lies within Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia, Guyana, Suriname, and French Guiana.

As a little girl, I used to see the Amazon forest on television. My parents and I watched the National Geographic and Discovery channel every evening for hours. During dinner we switched channels because my mother couldn’t eat while the lions and jackals devoured their dead deers. But as she took her last bite, papa would put the Discovery channel back on. And the dense jungles of Karnataka, ochre shrub lands of Rajasthan, and the most mysterious of them all — the Amazon — would spellbind us.

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How to Visit Machu Picchu on Your Own

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Covid Update July 2022 – Peru is now open to international travelers. Travelers must show proof of vaccination. Those who are unvaccinated have to show a negative covid-19 test issued up to 48 hours before boarding. Find the complete information on the official website of the Peru government. My guide to Peru tourist visa for Indians would be helpful, too.

 

If you are looking for how to visit Machu Picchu on your own, you have come to the right travel guide. As all you dear readers know, I hate the idea of arranging tours, booking trips, and getting into a group. I will be honest I didn’t even look at the options of going to Machu Picchu with a travel agency. But Machu Picchu was on my mind as it was on the best things to do in Cuzco Peru.

I hope you have read my big guide on traveling to Peru and this one on the Manu National park, the Amazon Rainforest. All these travelogues will help you plan your Peru itinerary.

Now if you are looking for the cheapest way to get to Machu Picchu on your own, then let us continue.

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I took a bus ride from Cusco to a town near Machu Picchu known as Hidroeléctrica and then walked and hiked the rest of the way — around 16 kilometers and more than 3000 stairs —to the top of the Incan royal city sitting at an altitude of 2,500 meters.

I wouldn’t have even taken the bus from Cusco to Hidroeléctrica if I knew I could have walked there all the way from Ollantaytambo, a UNESCO world heritage site and a village near Cusco. But I know now, and you, too.

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15 Fun Things To Do in Cusco, Peru [For 2022]

view of Cusco city in Peru with the surrounding Andes mountains in peru south america

Covid Update July 2022 – Peru is now open to international travelers. Travelers must show proof of vaccination. Those who are unvaccinated have to show a negative covid-19 test issued up to 48 hours before boarding. Find the complete information on the official website of the Peru government. My guide to Peru visa for Indian citizens would be helpful.

Table of Content for Best Things To Do in Cusco Peru

  1. What I loved about Cusco city Peru
  2. Best Things to do in Cusco Peru
  3. Best time to travel Cusco Peru
  4. How long to stay in Cuzco Perú
  5. How to travel to Cusco Peru
  6. What is the best way of traveling within the city of Cusco Perú?
  7. Best Places to Stay in Cuzco Peru
  8. Where to eat in Cusco?
  9. How to handle the altitude in Cusco city?
  10. Do you need to buy the Boleto Touristico in Cusco?
  11. What to pack for Cusco?
  12. Follow-Up Reads

What I Loved About Cusco city, Peru

Located high in the Andes, Cusco is one of the most culturally significant cities to see while backpacking in Peru. Once the capital of the Inca empire, Cusco is surrounded by the Inca ruins (including one of the wonders of the world, Machu Picchu).

During the twenty days I traveled in Cusco, I was never bored. Sometimes I hiked in the uninhabited Andes valleys near Cusco city. On other days I soaked in the sun at the main plaza and drank chicha morada (a purple corn drink). While some evenings I admired the rainbows behind the baroque cathedrals only to end up drinking at a fun bar, on mornings I could be found elbowing the locals in collectivos (shared taxis) on the way to the sacred Incan ruins. Once I bantered with fun Dutch and Argentinian travelers in a minibus that drove us to a town near Machu Picchu. And two days later I packed my backpack to visit el Parque Nacional del Manu in the Amazon rainforest (or the Manu National Park in English) – one of my best things to do in Peru.

Any traveler can find a myriad of things to do in Cuzco and make the city their own.

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Puno and Lago Titicaca: Peru’s Most Magical Places [2022]

a child on a reed island on Islas_flotantes_de_los_Uros Lago Titicaca Perú

Covid Update July 2022 – Peru is now open to international travelers. Travelers must show proof of vaccination. Those who are unvaccinated have to show a negative covid-19 test issued up to 48 hours before boarding. Lake Titicaca is also open to travelers. Find the complete information on the official website of the Peru government. My Peru travel visa guide for Indians is a recommended read. 

Traveling in Puno and Lago Titicaca, Peru

When I was doing the Colca Canyon trek near Arequipa, a traveler asked me where I would be going next in Peru. I had heard about Puno and Lago Titicaca. Maybe Puno, I blurted out. She said there weren’t many things to do in Puno, that I could also visit Lake Titicaca in Bolivia, and that she was skipping Puno to travel Cusco.

When she said most travelers skip Lake Titicaca in Peru, I was thrilled. Though I visit both offbeat and touristy places, Peru has some of the coolest and remotest places to see. I wanted to explore all of them. And what could be more remote and chilly than Lago Titicaca? A little intimidated by the idea of being in the big city of Cusco or crowding up to see Machu Picchu, I reserved a bus ticket to Puno.

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Backpacking Peru [2022]: One Guide to Rule Them All

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Covid Update July 2022 – Peru is now open to international travelers. Travelers must show proof of vaccination. Those who are unvaccinated have to show a negative covid-19 test issued up to 48 hours before boarding. Find the complete information on the official website of the Peru government. My guide to Peru visa for Indians would be helpful.

What can I say about backpacking Peru that hasn’t been said before?

Rugged Andes peaks, turquoise glaciers, deep canyons, thick Amazon rainforests, an arid coastline, giant vultures soaring high, thousands of ethnicities and beliefs, roasted guinea pigs as delicacies, myriad colors in a single piece of cloth, Catholics and indigenous together in a household, bright fruits and vegetables, vast reserves of silver and gold, a lake as giant as an ocean, penis temples, centuries-old ruins, simple people trying to make ends meet — these are the things Peru reminds me of.

During the entire five weeks I was traveling in Peru, I was trying to comprehend the stupendous landscape rolling in front of me.

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Colca Canyon Trek, Peru – A Complete Guide [2022]

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Covid Update July 2022 – Peru is now open to international travelers. Travelers must show proof of vaccination. Those who are unvaccinated have to show a negative covid-19 test issued up to 48 hours before boarding. Find the complete information on the official website of the Peru government. My Peru Visa guide for Indian citizens would be helpful, too.

Daring Colca Canyon, Peru

I did not know about the Colca Canyon in Peru until I reached Arequipa. When everyone in Arequipa asked me if I was going to do the Colca Canyon trek, I nodded. As a lazy researcher, I believe in improvised navigation. I had no idea what to see in Peru and went with the flow.

When I decided to do the Colca Canyon hike, I didn’t know Colca is twice as deep as Arizona’s Grand Canyon. The travel company with whom I booked a two-day Colca Canyon tour asked if I had any trekking experience; I thought about my recent Villarrica Volcano endeavor. I nodded. Though the volcano had improved my confidence, trekking into the 3,300 meters deep Colca sounded ambitious.

But without hiking Colca Canyon, my Arequipa visit would have been incomplete. So I paid 120 soles for the two-day hike, ate a heavy dinner, and hit the bed early.

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Peru – In Poetry and Pictures

peru lake titicaca amantani island boat image

Covid Update July 2022 – Peru is now open to international travelers. Travelers must show proof of vaccination. Those who are unvaccinated have to show a negative covid-19 test issued up to 48 hours before boarding. Find the complete information on the official website of the Peru government.

 

Oh dear friend, would you convey my message if you travel to the mystical land of the Incas.

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Could you find that old lady who guided me to the bus and tell her that I dream of her hair as I dream about the Himalayan snow.  

Could you find that little mystery-eyed girl who would be bigger by now and whisper to her that I would come again to play the game of “donde estas” with her in her home.

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Peru Visa for Indians, 2022 [From India and South America]

puno countryside beautiful green landscape with llama and huts

Covid Update July 2022 – Peru is now open to international travelers. Travelers must show proof of vaccination. Those who are unvaccinated have to show a negative covid-19 test issued up to 48 hours before boarding. Find the complete information on the official website of the Peru government.

Table of Content (TOC)

Peru is an easy country to enter. People from the US, most countries in the Americas, and Western Europe do not need tourist visas for Peru. But it is a different case for the Indian citizens.

Peru Visa for Indians

The process of the visa to Peru was worth the effort to see the gorgeous country (here’s my extensive travel guide to Peru). But the process simplified soon after I visited Peru.

Since March 2017, Indian nationals holding a minimum six-month valid visa or who are permanent residents of either the US, Canada, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Australia, or any Schengen member country can enter Peru for one-eighty-days (180) per year without a Peru visa (for tourism and business visits). 

The maximum period of stay will be up to one hundred and eighty (180) calendar days, either as a continuous visit or several consecutive visits, during the term of one year.

You can check out the declaration of the Peru visa exemption by the Embassy of Peru in India.

But those of you who do not hold any such visas or permanent residentships, please read on to understand the process of Peru visa for Indian citizens. 

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