Peru, known for: Incas, Amazon, Nasca, Moche, Chavin, Huaraz and Chachapoyas are only the top of all the highlights this unique South American country has to offer.
Official national name: República del Perú
Capital city: Lima, 9 million +
President: Ollanta Humala (2011)
Land area: 494,208 sq mi (1,279,999 sq km); total area: 496,223 sq mi (1,285,220 sq km) (37.7 times the size of the Netherlands)
Population (2011 est.): 29,549,517 (growth rate: 1.02%); birth rate: 19.13/1000; infant Mortality rate: 21.5/1000; life expectancy: 72.73 years
Monetary unit: Nuevo sol (1991)
Languages: Spanish, Quéchua (both official); Aymara; many minor Amazonian languages
Ethnicity/race: Amerindian 45%, Mestizo 37%, White 15%, Black, Japanese, Chinese, and other 3%
Religion: Roman Catholic 81.3%, Evangelical 12.5%, other%, unspecified or none 2.9% (2007 est.)
Peru borders Ecuador and Colombia to the north, Brazil to the east, Bolivia to the southeast, Chile to the south and the Pacific Ocean to the west. The Andean Mountains run parallel to the Pacific Ocean; they define the three regions traditionally used to describe the country geographically. The costa (coast), to the west, is a narrow plain, largely arid except for valleys created by seasonal rivers. The sierra (highlands) is the region of the Andes; it includes the Altiplano plateau as well as the highest peak of the country, the 6,768 m (22,205 ft) Huascarán. The third region is the selva (jungle), a wide expanse of flat terrain covered by the Amazon rainforest that extends east. Almost 60% of the country's area is located within this region.
Climate varies according to the area. On the coast, winter lasts from June to September. During this period, the mountainous areas are often sunny during the day but cold at night.
Peruvian culture is primarily rooted in indigenous and Spanish traditions, though it has also been influenced by various African, Asian, and European ethnic groups. Peruvian artistic traditions date back to the elaborate pottery, textiles, jewelry, and sculpture of Pre-Inca cultures. The Incas maintained these crafts and made architectural achievements including the construction of Machu Picchu.
Beautiful pictures of Peru, thanks to freelance photographer Guy
If you want to know if there are still places available on the famous 4-Days Inca Trail, or to climb the Huayna Picchu Mountain, you can have a look on this official website: www.machupicchu.gob.pe --> click the link “consultas” then --> “camino inka” and select a month to see availability.