Formed by coastal plains, the Ica Region is most famous for the mysterious Nazca Lines – a series of geoglyphs depicting animals and people that stretch for miles in the desert and can only be viewed from above. A popular destination for those with an interest in archaeology and wildlife, the Ica Region is home to a cemetery dating back to 1000 AD, rugged coastline, small rocky islands and an abundance of marine mammals and sea birds.
Sitting in the shadow of the Misti volcano, UNESCO-listed Arequipa – Peru’s second largest city – is dominated by a dramatic landscape of snow-capped volcanoes and colossal canyons. Dubbed ‘The White City’ due to its striking white volcanic rock buildings, historic highlights include the Jesuit Church of La Compañia with its intricately carved façade and the Santuarios Andinos Museum which houses the mummified remains of an Inca girl. Arequipa is the ideal place to acclimatise before heading to Colca and Titicaca.
The world’s second deepest canyon is twice as deep as the Grand Canyon and winds its way through a valley beneath a dramatic landscape of steep pre-Inca agricultural terraces backed by towering mountains. An early morning visit to Cruz del Condor offers staggering views and a chance to see the majestic Andean condor soaring high in the skies. The area offers a fantastic range of sightseeing, but altitudes of up to 3650 metres, so it is necessary to acclimatise before visiting Colca.
If you've already discovered Peru's most famous attractions or you are looking for an alternative destination that is less travelled, then this region is ideal.