We can assure your majesty that it is so beautiful and has such fine buildings that it would even be remarkable in Spain.

---Francisco Pizarro, describing Cuzco in a letter to King Charles V of Spain.

Peru is South America's third largest country, covering 1,285,215 sq. km., and can be divided into three distinct geographic regions. The best known of these is the central high sierra of the Andes, with its massive peaks, steep canyons, and extraordinary pre Columbian archaeological sites... The Andes are still one of the world's most unstable mountain ranges, with frequent earthquakes, landslides, and flash floods... Despite such instability, the Andes are also the site of the most fascinating pre-Columbian cities of South America-like the great city of the clouds, Machu Picchu
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When flying into Cusco..it is a sight I will never forget Almost as frightning as it is beautiful..If you can picture mountains on both sides of you and a huge jet plane flying thru and around them like a winding country road.!!!! This is why I think you can not fly into Cusco after the early morning hrs...Probably fog plays a large role in it as well!

Peru sits a few degrees south of the Equator, and is quite diversified..with Lima being the Capitol and a very busy city it's along the Pacific Coast in the center of an arid coastal desert which runs north to south for aprox. 1,100 miles..To the east of this is the great Andes Mountains..snow capped peaks rise well over 20,000 feet!

Aprox.1/2 of Peru..are the the jungles of the Amazon Basin..

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Saqsaywaman Marker...

... Women And Her Llama at The Ruins At Saqsaywaman...


...Part of the Ruin at Saqsaymaman...


...Drinking At The Base of The Mountain..Soooo Pure And Cold!...

The Empire Of the Inca people did not last more than a couple hundred years!!!By the end of the 16th. century, Francisco Pizarro's conquest was finished..The Spaniards executed the last Inca King aprox..1571...

Lima was founded by Pizarro in about 1535, and is a very busy city of more than 9 million people ....

Lima is a wonderful and lively city..with the suburbs..of Miraflores there is a neat flea market in the evening in the center square,resturants,museums,old churches.. shops, and lots of clubs.. come alive..with music and folks .. of course the Worst Traffic..I have ever seen In My Life ha!

WARNING!..DON'T ATTEMPT TO DRIVE.IN LIMA.. For that matter walking ain't so easy either.!!!!


Cute Little Mountain Children .. Cusco..

Our trip begins upon arrival in the Cusco...And WOW! I can tell you the altitude felt like a ton of bricks falling on my head! Ha!....
The first stop was to the Monesterio hotel..which was just beautiful!!.. and if you can swing it I highly suggest staying there a couple of nites...!

We were greeted with a cup or many cups of Coca Tea..which is available everywhere in Peru..
Now I am not saying chew it..! ha! I mean to drink it..!! I must say...It helped some for sure with out it the effects of the altitude would have been much worse... I found every step an effort!.. of course this had nothing! to do with lighting a cigarette!!! I must have been crazy! if I were on the edge of a mountain as I was at the time..it's amazing I did not fall off..! as I really become quite dizzy!

The Andes is one of the longest Mountain chains in the world.From Cape Horn, at the tip of Tierra del Fuego in Chile,it stretches aprox..7,500 kilometers..north to Venezuela..These are the highest mountains and volcanoes in the Americas..and quite beautiful to the eye!

...CROSSING THE ANDES PERU!.. GREAT INCA MUSIC...

The best thing to do is rest for several hours after arriving.. and taking it very slow..for the first day....
Cusco is most beautiful but the altitude is quite high and is very difficult to get around in... almost every step is up hill..and with little air this hurts!..Ah the Inca Music...everywhere...So Fun!


...Hotel Monasterio Side Garden Cuzco, Peru...

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... 2 Photos of part of the Chapel in the Hotel...

The Hotel Monasterio Is by far! the finest hotel in Cusco Peru !! The hotel itself was built as a Spanish colonial seminary more than 300 years ago - and the mix of Incan and Colonial cultures is what makes Cusco special. Not only is the landscape quite impressive, but it is surrounded by a wealth of architectural ruins, within the city limits, and just a day trip away from Macchu Picchu.( It offers most anything and any information you need for your travels in Peru...The staff is wonderful....
this beautiful hotel occupies the San Antonio Abad monastery, constructed in 1592 on the foundations of an Inca palace. An Orient-Express and Leading Small Hotels of the World property, the Hotel Monasterio -- converted into a hotel in 1995 -- exudes grace and luxury. As much a museum as a hotel, it has its own opulent gilded chapel and 18th-century Escuela Cusqueña art collection. Located on quiet Las Nazarenas square between the bohemian San Blas district and the main square, the hotel makes fine use of several courtyards with stone arches; one is set up for lunch outdoors, about as beautiful a setting as is to be found in Cusco. Rooms are impeccably decorated in both colonial and modern styles, with large Cusqueña School paintings; the accommodations off the first courtyard are more traditionally designed and feel more authentic. For a special treat, consider one of the two-story junior suites. One restaurant, Tupay, is housed in the original vaulted refectory of the monastery; early risers, many on their way to Machu Picchu, can enjoy a terrific breakfast buffet as they're serenaded by Gregorian chants. The elegant dinner restaurant Illary is the finest in Cusco. As a special bonus, the hotel is the first in the world to offer oxygen piped directly into rooms through the ventilation ($40/£20 per day).

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... The Dining Room And one of the Alcovess in the hotel ...Is Lovely! As you can see...My Photos do no justice to the beauty of this hotel it is just simly Gorgeous!

... One of my Favorite little alcove for late coffie ect at the hotel ...

This hotel is 5 star.. And is located at Calle Palacios 136, Plazoleta Nazarenas Cusco The rooms were orig..Dormitories for Jesuit missionaries. No two rooms are alike, in size and decor. The Hotel Pumps oxygen into the rooms which helps alot..as well as the Cocoa tea..they keep in the Large Lobby at all times which seems to help as the altitude is awesome! I drank a alot of it...and truly does not harm you at all (Now ! I am saying to drink the cocoa tea...Def! not chew it!!Ha! Or you Probably won't remember much of the trip! (ha!)


... One of the beautiful gardens off to the side at the hotel ...

If you really want a unique experience and can afford it Is soooo well worth it!..if you only stay a one deluxe hotel on your entire Trip! You will Love this Hotel!
Cusco is one of the woelds most fascinating ancient cities,was the capital of a great pre-Columbian empire. It's rulers were the Incasand it's people the Quenchuas... lording over the city from a nearby summit is the fortress of Sacsahuaman, made up of huge boulders that we never lift today!
The better time to visit Cusco is usually from April to November..And also June 24th. when the colorful Inti Raymi pageant is held every year depicting ancient Inca rituals .No matter when you go you will need warmer clothing at night due to the altitude which is really high...


...Center Square In Cusco...

Peru's climate varies considerably by region, although January through March tends everywhere to be the wet season. The coastal areas, which are quite hot and humid during those months, are cooled during the rest of the year by La Garuùa. The fog doesn't penetrate very far inland, however, and the western side of the Andes are very clear, warm, and dry for the greater part of the year. As one moves up into the mountains, night-time temperatures become considerably colder. The eastern slope of the Andes, like the Amazon basin, experiences very heavy rainfall during the wet season, which extends from January all the way through April. We went in August And seemed to be fine!


...Oh No You Don't! I Got Ya! Little Chickie!...


...Beautiful Building in Cusco!...


...View From The Top Over looking Cusco...

In the surrounding area there is a statue of Jesus that is approximately 25 meters tall called “The White Christ” that was a present by the colonial Palestine to Cusco. From this point you have a spectacular view of the city of Cusco.

...The White Christ....


...The Plaque on the Statue....

THE SACRED VALLEY OF THE INCAS

We decided to spend our first nites in the Sacred Valley of the Incas seeing as much as possible.. before going on to Macchu Picchu..Hoping the time here would help us get use to the high altitude if this is at all possible!


...Hard Working Man On the Road....

It is very difficult to get desirable rooms in the valley ..as there are not so many nice ones available..so it's best to try to book early..and to also reserve tickets for the train to Macchu Picchu!!..as these trains are always booked in 1st class...I guess it depends when you will be there ...high season is very booked..! Or if you choose to hike! As many folks do...But it is quite difficult with the Altitude!

MACHU PICCHU'
THE ANCIENT INCA CITADEL, BUILT IN THE 15TH. CENTURY, IS PERCHED AROUND 4000 FT. ABOVE SEA LEVEL ? IS THE MOST VISITED SITE IN SOUTH AMERICA
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.... 2 Partial Views Of Macchu Picchu...Entirely to large of area to capture... Just Incredible! ...
... TAKE LOT'S OF BUG SPRAY!!!... OR YOU WILL! GET ALOT OF BITES!...

We arrive in the valley ..and begin to see the wonderful sights. By the way ..it is very easy to get a car and driver..for maybe about $20-25.00 American..I mean all day!)To me it was worth it.. Or you can get tours..or car rentals..However, I do not suggest to drive .. the mountain roads are very narrow, tricky and can be quite dangerous.. with No Lights..at nite..If your brave Try It! but is is just to risky! Least I thought crazy drivers..

.... Hard Working Women WOW! I complain about carrying my camera! ...

The valley, is a short distance from Cusco, is one of the richest in Peru, With Many interesting remains and Lovely Views..It was formed many thousands of years ago by the waters of the Vilcanota River....In remote times it was called Willcamayu...Which means Sacred River...

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.... Views Of The Square In Center Cusco Not Far from the Hotel ...

A Strong Of Advice...When you arrive on Machu P,icchu..there are cute LLamas quietly walking around (!!!Don't Touch Them!!!!) I did ! and paid a hefty price.. as they are full of fleas or something like them and I was bitten well over 100 bites...and was sick for a few day's ..Take lot's of bug spray with you as I did not ...And sure wish I had...There are also lot's of biting Flies at the train station as well...Better be safe then sorry! TAKE LOT'S OF BUG SPRAY!
...The Llama in the photo is the culprit!!!! with the fleas! looks kool but it is not!... KEEP AWAY!...
The lost city of Machu Picchu,challenging the ingenuity of contemporary architects. The ancient art This is Peru.. This city proves that man was making his way here some 10,000 years ago ..Yes this is Peru!
center> You won't believe what you see..Mountains that shoot up colors that a painter's palette has yet to capture..The colorful garb of the people Yep !!this is Peru!

The area of the Sacred Valley of the incas runs more than 100 miles from Pisaq to Machupicchu and also includes many towns..including ollantayambo...


...Narrow Street in Urubamba...

Urubamba (means "Flat land of Spiders" in Quechua) is a small town in Peru, located near the Urubamba River under the snow-capped mountain of Chicon. The town is located near a number of Important ruins of the Inca Empire, and usually houses tourists visiting these sites


...Now You Be Back For Dinner Early!...

The Andes by no means are the only region to visit in Peru. Also of great interest is Peru's narrow, low land coastal region, a northern extension of the Atacama Desert. Although the Atacama is generally known as the most arid region on the planet, the climate along Peru's shores is made cooler and less dry by La Garu & ugravea, a dense fog created by the collision of the frigid waters of the Humboldt Current with the heated sands of the Atacama. Lima, Trujillo, and Chiclayo, three of Peru's major population centers, are located along this coastal desert.

...THIS IS AN UNKNOWN TRIBE NEVER BEFORE SEEN AMAZING!... VIDEO...

Anthropologists were not able to name the tribe it is believed that they had traveled a short distance from neighboring Peru. Authorities in Peru's Amazon state of Madre de Dios now say they will stop illegal loggers who travel deep into the forest in search of tropical hardwoods. We Hope! They are often the first people to encounter the tribes. Marco Tulio Valverde, an adviser to the regional government, said: "We haven't determined if there are three different groups or only one, nomadic, which has been displaced. "They only hunt, gather and fish, they don't farm, but they know fire."

...NEW INFORMATION ...
The Brazilian government has confirmed the existence of about 200 unidentified tribal people in the Amazon rainforest. Satellite pictures in January revealed this community was living near the border with Peru. A flight expedition over the area in April confirmed that they are about 200 in numbers. Along with Survival International (Funai), an organization working for tribal people's rights worldwide, Brazilian authorities found that these people are living in three clearings in the Javari Valley in the western Amazon. According to Fabricio Amorim, who led Funai’s overflight expedition, illegal fishing, hunting, logging, mining, cattle ranching, missionary actions, drug trafficking and oil exploration on the Peru-Brazil border area are the main threats to the well-being of this community and their dwellings. Brazil follows a policy not to contact these people, instead monitor their land so that they can live without any risk. The community and its four straw-roofed huts were spotted in the Javari Valley, which is believed to be hiding around 2000 uncontacted tribes in the world. Survival International has released the first, clear pictures of this ancient Amazonian tribe, who grow crops, peanuts, bananas, corns and more

...Chinchero is a small Andean Indian village...

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...Chinchero Valley ... The Village...

That is located high up on the windswept plains of Anta at 3762m about 30km from Cusco. There are beautiful views overlooking the Sacred Valley of the Incas, with the Cordillera Vilcabamba and the snow-capped peak of Salkantay dominating the western horizon. Chinchero is believed to be the mythical birthplace of the rainbow. Its major claim to tourism is its colorful Sunday market which is much less tourist-orientated than the market at Pisac.

Chinchero Plaza de Armas, Chinchero, Peru The village mainly comprises mud brick (adobe) houses, The locals still go about their business in traditional dress.

...Chinchero ...

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...More Market Views ...

The village at one time may have been an important town in Inca times. The most striking remains of this period is the massive stone wall in the main plaza which has ten trapezoidal niches. The construction of the wall and many other ruins and agricultural terraces (which are still in use) are attributed to Inca Tupac Yupanqui who possibly used Chinchero as a kind of a country resort. Entrance to the main plaza and ruins requires a 'boleto turistico'. In the main plaza an adobe colonial church, dating from the early seventeenth century, was been built on the foundations of an Inca temple or palace. The ceiling and walls are covered in beautiful floral and religious designs. The church is always open on Sundays for mass.

....Grave Markers On The Roadside....

....SOME MORE INTERESTING FACTS...
There are 25 regions (regiones, singular - region) and 1 province* (provincia); Amazonas, Ancash, Apurimac, Arequipa, Ayacucho, Cajamarca, Callao, Cusco, Huancavelica, Huanuco, Ica, Junin, La Libertad, Lambayeque, Lima, Lima*, Loreto, Madre de Dios, Moquegua, Pasco, Piura, Puno, San Martin, Tacna, Tumbes, Ucayali

...LIMA IS THE CAPITAL OF PERU AND THE LARGEST CITY....

Lima .. is located in the valleys of the Chillón, Rímac and Lurín rivers, on a coast overlooking the Pacific Ocean. It forms a contiguous urban area with the seaport of Callao.

Lima ..was founded by Spanish conquistador Francisco Pizarro on January 18, 1535, as La Ciudad de los Reyes, or "The City of Kings." It became the most important city in the Spanish Viceroyalty of Peru and, after the Peruvian War of Independence, was made the capital of the Republic of Peru. Today around one-third of the Peruvian population lives in the metropolitan area.

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.... Lima Center City.....Changing of The Guards....

This is the Main Entrance to TheSan Francisco Church This Church is one of the few buildings that survives Lima's earthquake in the 18th century , its interiors beauty is far more beautiful then Lima's main cathedral. If you wish to get some idea of what religious life was like during Spanish colonial times, You must see this Church!! It's in a quaint square just a few streets away from Plaza de Armas And Well Worth The Visit Amazing!

.... Entrance to the San Francisco Church ....
Convento de San Francisco is the Spanish name for Saint Francis Monastery located in Lima, Peru. The church was completed in 1774 and is noted for its architecture, a high example of Spanish Neoclassicism. The convent's library is world-renowned. Catacombs below the monastery contain an ossuary and are said to connect to other catacombs beneath the cathedral and other area churches. The church and convent are part of the Historic Centre of Lima, which was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1991. In this church, Jude the Apostle is venerated.

.... The Top Center Of The San Francisco Church gorgeous! ....

.... Hallway in the San Francisco Church....

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.... Beautiful Works of Art On The Walls in the San Francisco Church Church....

...Kissing Lovers Statue In Lima...

Peru's economy re-flects its varied geography .. an arid coastal region, the Andes further inland, and tropical lands bordering Colombia and Brazil. Abundant mineral resources are found in the mountainous areas, and Peru's coastal waters provide excellent fishing grounds. However, overdependence on minerals and metals subjects the economy to fluctuations in world prices, and a lack of infrastructure deters trade and investment. After several years of inconsistent economic performance, the Peruvian economy grew by more than 4% per year during the period 2002-06, with a stable exchange rate and low inflation. Growth jumped to 7.5% in 2007, driven by higher world prices for minerals and metals.

...WANT TO HIKE! NO PROBLEM...

Peru is a veritable paradise for hikers. Practically the entire highland spine of the country, including valleys, plains and massifs feature trekking circuits varying in degrees of difficulty. Only a handful of these circuits have been commercially "discovered" as trekking routes. The rest remain relatively unexplored, awaiting all those who wish to retrace the magical roads through the Peruvian Andes, with its extraordinary network of pre-Colombian trails and more than 12,000 lakes. It is a land which features the world's deepest canyons, glaciers and snow-capped peaks, forests and thundering waterfalls, picturesque villages and above all, the most hospitable people imaginable. Some trails are so steep they lead into breath-taking gorges, zig-zagging through the mountains, others straight as an arrow, fading into the distant desert horizon; hidden and invisible amongst the thick undergrowth of the Amazon jungle. The trails of Peru offer endless possibilities, and many ideal combinations for hikers of all levels of experience.


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PHOTO'S BY "SHERRY LEVITT"