I am originally from Lima, Peru. Being from South America and beginning my travel career in Peru gives me that extra edge of knowledge. My passion for travel started when I was seven years old on my first family holiday to Huaraz in the highlands of Peru. The impressive mountain range, glacial lakes and pre-Inca archaeological sites made me realise that there is so much to learn, and the best way to do it is by traveling to all these amazing places. From that first trip travelling never stopped for me; I have travelled extensively around Peru and been to so many amazing places in Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Panama, and Bolivia.
Revisit Machu Picchu and walk to the top of Machu Picchu Mountain. I always recommend revisiting Machu Picchu for a second time in the morning on the first time slot to avoid the crowds and get the perfect picture opportunity. Walking to the top of Machu Picchu Mountain requires an additional ticket to be purchased in advance together with the second entrance to Machu Picchu. The walk takes three hours to the top, but it is worth it. The bird’s-eye view from the top is truly amazing, showing Machu Picchu and surrounding mountains, and – if you are lucky – you may also spot a Paddington bear in the distance.
Trekking the Colca Canyon and waking up in the middle of the night for stargazing. Walking down the canyon at dusk took us almost three hours but it felt like nothing as we enjoyed the dramatic mountain scenery and spotted the condors flying over our heads. Walking back up was very challenging but incredibly rewarding as we reached the top for dusk. Stargazing in the Colca Canyon was an amazing experience, with no noise and no light pollution – allowing me to see plenty of stars and planets.
Peru is obviously my favourite place to travel as it is my birth country and the place where I spent most of my life. Its culture, ancient archaeological sites, impressive scenery, and welcoming people make Peru the full-package destination. My favourite places in Peru are Cuzco and Machu Picchu. Cuzco welcomes you into the Inca world with its cobblestoned streets and impressive Inca and Spanish architecture that perfectly reflects the history of the country. Outside Cuzco city, the indigenous communities in the valleys and the beautiful women with their colourful attires make you realise traditions are still being passed down the generations. In the small towns, ancient Inca canals and fortresses embedded on mountains are still intact, taking you back in time and immersing you in the local culture. The journey to Machu Picchu is truly unforgettable; the train travels through the mountains into the cloud forest. Arriving at Machu Picchu, you realise that you have landed in the heart of the Inca empire.
My favourite hotel is the Arenal Nayara Gardens in Costa Rica. The property’s natural surroundings and lush forest attract a great deal of wildlife such as my personal favourite animal: sloths. If you are lucky, you can spot them hanging off a tree from your balcony while you sip a nice cup of Costa Rican coffee in the morning. The service at this hotel is outstanding; you are welcomed with a glass of wine while waiting to check in and ushered to your room in a golf cart. Villas are spread around the property, and each is surrounded by tropical foliage. On a clear day from the grounds of the property guests can enjoy views of the Arenal Volcano towering majestically in the distance.