16 Fun Facts About Peru’s History, Geography and Culture

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Mysteries, adrenaline-rush adventure activities and rich history, Peru has everything backed by magnificent architecture and diverse landscapes. 

If you also want to explore the beauty of Peru and delve into its rich culture, I have rounded up this list of fun facts for you.

1. The Peruvian People Can Speak Upto 43 Languages

While Spanish is the official language, there are around forty-three languages spoken by traditional people. The popular languages include Agurauna, Quechua and Ashaninka.

2. A Traditional Peruvian Poncho Takes Up More Than 500 Hours To Create

Peruvian people have always loved weaving and forms a major part of their culture. The rich culture is evident in making a Peruvian poncho, which takes more than 500 hours.

4 children wearing Peruvian Ponchos

These ponchos are very intricate, and one souvenir you can use for years to come.

3. The Amazon Rainforest Covers Much Of The Country

One of the major tourist drawcards of Peru is the Peruvian Amazon or the Amazon Rainforest, which takes up almost 60% of the country.

4. Peruvian People Still Mine Salt

There is a village in Peru called Maras. Here, the natives still use the ancient methods of mining salt by evaporating the water from the salt ponds built during pre-Incas period.

5. The Largest Flying Bird On Earth Is From Peru

With a height of up to 1.2 meters and a wingspan of 3.2 meters, the Andean Condor is wider than a bus!

They weigh about 15 kgs and live in the windier areas of Peru, such as the Colca Canyon, using the air currents to make flying easier.

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6. The ‘White City’ Of Arequipa Is Built From Volcanic Stone

Arequipa was built majorly with white volcanic stones and the natives called it the “white city”. Even after an earthquake in the 19th century destroyed much of the city, it was again rebuilt using the same white stones. 

The name “white city” remains unchanged, and is a very popular spot for Instagrammers.

7. The Local Delicacy Of Peru Is Guinea Pig

No matter how weird it sounds, the people of Peru love to eat Guinea pigs. Locally known as cuy, the delicacy is made into a crispy fry with its whole body in place. And don’t forget to pair it up with chicha, which is usually a glassful of local drink.

8. Floating Grass Is Used To Make The Uros Islands In Lake Titicaca

Peru’s unique attraction, the Uros Islands, is made of reeds that are abundant in Lake Titicaca.

Floating Grass on the Uros islands with a yellow boat

Tourists visiting the island often enjoy fishing and making local handicrafts.

9. The Pisco Sour Is Peru’s National Drink

Made from the Peruvian grape brandy, Pisco Sour is prepared by mixing sugar water, lemons, and egg whites and finished off with something sour.

Replace the egg whites with Chilcano soda water for a lighter version of this drink.

10. Machu Picchu Is The Historical Lost City Of Peru

Popularised as the Lost City, Machu Picchu is 1 of the 7 Wonders of the World. When it was rediscovered in 1911 by Hiram Bingham, the Incan civilisation started residing in the Sacred Valley – which is located 8,000 feet above sea level.

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Machu Picchu with a llama

It’s hard to reach Machu Picchu. You need to hike, take a train and then a bus to Peru’s #1 tourist site.

11. The Spanish Destroyed Incan Buildings And Built On Top Of It

The Spaniards captivated the majority of the Peru regions back in 1530. They also forfeited the natives’ religious beliefs by building homes and churches on the local homes and temples.

12. Peru has around 90 Different Micro-climates

Peru is regarded amongst the most bio-diverse countries in the world, with 90 distinct climates and an abundance of rainforests. The country also houses around 5,000 animals paired with 25,000 plant species.

The Manu National Park in southeastern Peru is rich in biodiversity, featuring more than 1,000 species of birds, 1,200 species of butterflies and 287 species of reptiles. Peru ranks among the 10 most biologically diverse countries in the world.

13. You Can Hike Up A Rainbow Mountain In Peru

The rainbow-colored slopes buried deep in the Andes can be found on Vinicunca Mountain.

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This is one place yet to be discovered by most Instagrammers, so you’ll have the place mostly to yourself.

14. The Highest Navigable Lake Is Lake Titicaca

With a height of 3,812 metres, Lake Titicaca happens to be one of the highest navigable lakes worldwide. It’s also considered “The Sacred Lake” as many believe that the great god Viracocha appeared walking across its waters.

15. Peru Is The Starting Point Of The Amazon River

The Amazon begins its journey in the Peruvian Andes, located near Machu Picchu, before meeting the Atlantic ocean some 4,000 miles later.

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16. You Can See The Mysterious Nazca Lines From The Air

First noticed in 1927, Peru’s Nazca Lines is a collection of more than 70 animal geoglyphs and 70 human figures.

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This archaeological mystery can only really be seen from the air.

Joshua Smith

Joshua has visited 10 countries and has another 110 to go! He plans to sail around the world over 5 years, and then spend the next 5 years driving around the world in a 4×4. He prefers to explore the more remote places without the tourists, and yet, doesn’t mind the ritzy feel of business class at 10,000 feet either.

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