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Rainbow over the Sacred Valley | © Jae/Flickr
Rainbow over the Sacred Valley | © Jae/Flickr
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A Couple's Guide to Exploring Peru

Picture of Brandon Dupre
Updated: 29 August 2017
With beautiful architecture and stunning landscapes, Peru is the ideal getaway for travelers. You can take strolls in the beautiful colonial plazas in Lima and Arequipa, or search for ruins in the Sacred Valley. Peru also has beautiful beaches in the north, where there is sunshine all year round. If you are coming to Peru with your partner, check out our guide to discovering all the romantic locations this beautiful country has to offer.

Northern Beaches of Peru

Mancora

While Peru isn’t known for its beaches, the northern part of the country has some great ones. In Mancora, you’ll have a chance to sunbathe in year-round warmth and take a dip in the refreshing Pacific Ocean. Just southeast of Mancora lie La Poza de Barro hot springs and mud baths, which offer couples a chance for even more relaxation after a day in the sun. While Peru’s beaches don’t draw the same attention as Machu Picchu or other Inca sites, they are a nice place to end or begin a trip to Peru.

Vichayito and Los Organos

Another beautiful stretch of beaches along the north coast of Peru, these towns and beaches will be much quieter than Mancora, but with slightly colder water. You’ll find the same array of entertainment options such as kitesurfing, four-wheeling, and horseback riding, but one thing the other beaches don’t lay claim to: turtles. Only a short ride from Los Organos is the Nuro fishing dock and turtle swimming adventure. Walk down the dock to all the commotion (you won’t miss it) where people are laughing, cheering, and most likely shivering after jumping in and swimming with the turtles who roam the area. Please do not touch the animals while swimming with them; touching the animals can be harmful to their thin layer of slime to covers their shell, and can cause disease.

Las Pocitas

If you want to be close to Mancora, but don’t like the surfer-party scene, head to Las Pocitas. It is quieter and, with all the palm trees, in some ways more beautiful than Mancora. Here you can lounge at beautiful upscale beachside hotels without all the noise and traffic that Mancora brings. If you do decide to go to town and party, it’s only a short taxi ride or a walk away. You have access to all of Mancora, but also the peace and quiet of a nice beach hotel when you need it.

Lima

Upscale Restaurants and Delicious Food

Lima has earned the reputation as the food capital of Peru and, by extension, Latin America. With a progressive food scene and beautiful, world-class restaurants, Lima offers couples romantic nights out. You’ll have the opportunity to eat at some of the best restaurants in the world with your significant other.

Colonial Historic Center

Take a carriage ride in the colonial historical center with your loved one before or after you enjoy one of Peru’s outstanding restaurants. Both at night and during the day, Peru’s historical center offers unrivaled beauty. See Peru’s famous balconies and the restored colonial mansions, and look for the Presidential Palace, the Monastery of San Francisco, and the Archbishop Palace.

Catedral de Lima
Catedral de Lima | © Art DiNo/Flickr

Barranco

Barranco, located just south of Miraflores along the Pacific Ocean, is Lima’s artsy, bohemian district. It’s developed without being soullessly upscale, and artsy without trying too hard, offering a splash of color among Lima’s otherwise ubiquitous grey. Its main attractions are the Bridge of Sighs (one of its most romantic areas in the evening), the beautiful plaza with its bright colors and onlooking church, the street art found almost everywhere and, of course, its seemingly endless supply of bars. Have a drink and walk around the the district enjoying all its color, art, and quirkiness.

Cusco and Sacred Valley

Why not spend some time in the place deemed to be the sacred home of the Incas? Cusco was the capital of the Incas until it was taken over by the Spanish. Visiting Cusco, you’ll experience the beautiful confluence of Inca and Spanish architecture, and that alone is worth the trip. Spending some time here would also allow you to see Machu Picchu. After spending time in Cusco and exploring Machu Picchu, you can unwind in the Sacred Valley, the expanse of land encompassing Cusco and Machu Picchu. Out here you’ll find peace and relaxation away from people, and wake up and gaze at the once-sacred mountains and valleys.

Plaza de Armas, Cusco
Plaza de Armas, Cusco | © Lorna Mitchell/Flickr

Arequipa

Arequipa is a beautiful colonial town in the south of Peru, and is Peru’s second-largest metropolis. Stunning colonial architecture and a volcano for a backdrop make this city a must-see while you are in Peru.

Canon del Colca

While Machu Picchu and Cusco get all the attention, Cañón del Colca might be the most naturally beautiful place to visit in Peru. The canyon is 62 miles (100 kilometres) from end to end, and more than twice as deep as the Grand Canyon. The area is also rich with ruins from pre-Incan and Incan societies, as well as numerous Spanish structures.