3 Underrated Destinations in Peru

You finally booked your trip to South America, that one you’ve been craving for such a long time. You’ve researched about many popular destinations like the Salt Flats in Bolivia and the Atacama Desert in Chile – and of course, you can’t wait to see the famous Inca city of Machu Picchu in Peru.

Yes, Machu Picchu is beautiful — I almost cried when I walked around the city, marveling at those perfect walls with their massive stones meticulously attached to each other. But what if I told you that Peru has a lot more to offer?

Michael Zysman / Shutterstock.com
Michael Zysman / Shutterstock.com

If you look carefully, you’ll find stunning beaches along the coast, dense forest in the northeast and even the remains of civilizations older than the Incas in the north of the country.

Let me pique your interest:

1. Huanchaco

This city is located on the north coast of Peru, around 600 km above Lima. It’s just 20 minutes away from Trujillo and when you arrive there, you somehow feel instantly welcomed. It has this special energy that only beach cities in warm countries have — a very laid back attitude coupled with smiles all around.

Although I prefer green landscapes, I was mesmerized by the dry scenery. The whole of the coast is situated on the west side of the Andes and it creates a microclimate that resembles a desert.

Matyas Rehak / Shutterstock.com
Matyas Rehak / Shutterstock.com

You can spend lazy afternoons watching the surfers aptly weaving the perfect waves while you catch some sun. Then, you can stuff your face with the freshest ceviche you’ll find in Peru and finish your day at the pier, taking in the magical sunset over the Pacific.