Peru, a country with a multiple personality, is fascinating for its rich history and culture. The large urban centers contrast with the Andean countryside frozen in their traditions.
- Lima, a bustling and dynamic capital, offers visitors superb colonial buildings, some of the best dining in the world, and a dazzling nightlife.
- Arequipa, the characteristic city of the desert, where life always takes place behind whitewashed walls and closed doors (must see the Monasterio de Santa Catalina and the most famous Inca mummy : Juanita at the Museo Santuarios Andinos).
- Cuzco, in the Andes, a city buzzing with energy born from the mixture of people that one meets there : tourists with shining eyes of so many wonders, indigenous artisans, researchers on their way to the Amazon, ecclesiastics in cassocks.
Peru is also a country proud of its ancestral traditions, such as weaving. Around 6,000 years ago, people domesticated the llama and alpaca, slowly moving from hunting and gathering to an economy based on herding, which gave rise to weaving, still today, one of the main national arts.
The alpaca, domesticated soon after the llama, was bred for its fleece. Its wool, softer than that of sheep, is prized throughout the world. Almost 80% of the planet's 4 million alpacas live in southern Peru, in the Arequipa region, where they are a key component of the peasant economy.