For those whose sense of adventure leans more toward a luxurious experience rather than days on a trail and nights in a tent, Peru has many exquisite travel experiences to offer. If you are looking for the best in Peruvian hospitality and service, here are a few suggestions that you might want to consider.
1) M/V Aqua River Cruise
While most folks near the rivers travel in long, shallow canoes, the Amazon and its tributaries are well able to sustain larger vessels like M/V Aqua. The first luxury cruise boat on the Amazon River boasts room for 24 guests plus crew. Grand picture windows, private sitting areas and even 4 master suites take river travel to a new level. You can now expect Pacific cruise standards in the warm, fragrant climate of the Amazon Basin. Experience the grand views of the Amazonian shoreline from the comfort of your air-conditioned suite. A beautiful covered deck tops the boat where you can sit and enjoy the star-spangled evenings while being soothed into relaxation by the jungle’s lullaby.
2) The Hiram Bingham Train
Named after the famous American explorer and Yale University lecturer, the Hiram Bingham Train ride is considered one of the finest luxury Peru travel experiences and one of the best ways to travel to fabled citadel of Machu Picchu. Styled like the famous Pullman Trains of the 1920’s, the Hiram Bingham has the capacity to carry 84 passengers in the up-most comfort. Travelling from the station of Poroy (just outside of Cusco) to Machu Picchu, the 3 hours and 30 minutes ride takes you on a journey across spectacular and unforgettable Andean scenery. The train, which is made up of 4 carriages, 2 dining cars, a kitchen car and a bar/observatory car is lavishly decorated throughout with fine linens, dark wood and polished brass fittings and fixtures. The journey comes complete with gourmet meals, free regional wines and beers and live on-board entertainment. Afternoon tea at the exclusive Sanctuary Lodge Hotel (the only hotel at the citadel of Machu Picchu) is also included within the price of the ticket.
3) A Meal at Astrid & Gaston in Lima
With Peru coming into its own as a centre for fine cuisine, Astrid & Gatson rarely fails to impress even the finest of palates. Listed as one of the top 50 restaurants in the world, you won’t want to miss this experience. Plan ahead, though, Gaston & Astrid books up quickly. If you’re a night owl, they serve dinner late, too. Don’t forget to ask about their off-menu selection of Peruvian craft beers. With something for everyone, Gastón Acurio’s signature Peruvian-Mediterranean eatery is a top-pick for your high class trip to Peru. Astrid & Gatson is located in the trendy area of Miraflores, and is right in the heart of the main hotel district, just 10 minutes from the Pacific coastline.
4) A night at the Monasterio Hotel in Cusco
Originally built in 1595, El Monasterio Hotel sits on an historical Inca site – Amary Qhala’s Palace. Only three years after its completion, the Spanish arrived and took over and founded the Seminary of San Antonio Abad. It wasn’t until 1965 that the site was restored and remodelled as a hotel. Now a historic landmark, this is a prime choice for a luxurious stay in Cusco. Relax in the spa and enjoy a stress-relieving aromatherapy massage or take a guided art tour of the hotel to view the expansive fine art collection and unique history of the chapel – built in 1650 during a later restoration project. The hotel which is owned by the exclusive Orient Express chain of hotels is considered one of the most Iconic hotels in Peru, and rarely fails to impress.
5) The Andean Explorer Train
Ride the rails through mountains and clouds while you enjoy the view of the Peruvian countryside. This 10 hour ride is among the 10 best train journeys in the world and has a fine collection of additional awards. Journeying from Cusco to Puno on the shores of Lake Titicaca, the Andean Explorer will carry you through spectacular mountain scenery and past remote Andean communities. Sit back and relax on comfortable seating while you gaze through the massive windows – windows into a vast history. Enjoy fine dining and local music without leaving your seat.
With careful planning and a little bit of expert assistance, your visit to Peru can be all and more that you imagined it could be. Come see the luxurious side of this South American nation!