The Andes' (and perhaps of South America's) most compelling country, thanks to attractions including bustling capital Lima with its colonial core; remnants of ancient civilizations like the Nazca lines, Machu Picchu, and temples of Cuzco; and the eco-lodges of the Peruvian Amazon.

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Hiking in the Peruvian Andes

  Jorge Arciniega   Everyone's heard of Machu Picchu, of course, and this magical spot does indeed live up to the hype. And most visitors take a train here from Cuzco, but for real adventure, find a guide or join a group to get there the old-fashioned way nature intended - on foot, with a four- to five-day trek through ancient sites and mountainside communities of weavers and farmers. The best known route is the 26-mile Inca Trail, consisting of three overlapping routes and much of it following…

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Peru cited in 'South America's Iconic Vicuñas'

  Visitors to part of Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Ecuador, and Peru (where it's the national animal and is even on the country's coat of arms) may come across this quintessential South American mammal, a camelid related to guanacos, llamas, and alpacas (which are descended from vicuñas) The smallest of the camelids, vicuñas stand about three feet tall at the shoulder; weigh between 70 and 150 pounds; and have long necks and legs as well as relatively small heads with long pointed ears. read…

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Cuzco's Festival of the Sun among '4 of Latin America's Most Fascinating Festivals'

If you’re planning on choosing a holiday with a whole new sense of adventure, there seems to be a huge number of places still available to surprise - even shock and stun - the most jaded traveler. Yet while the temples of southeast Asia, vast canyons of North America, and unmistakable coastlines of Europe are all fantastic places to lose yourself for a week or two, one continent stands out from all the rest as a partygoer’s dream: Central and South America. We’ve all heard of the blowouts that…

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