On Track

Top 5 Don’t Miss Experiences with the Belmond Andean Explorer

South America’s first luxury sleeper train, the ultra-chic Andean Explorer travels from Cusco and then traverses across the Andean plains to the city of Arequipa. With Belmond’s luxurious sleeper cars, the lively Observation car, and the Picaflor Spa car, you’ll be hard-pressed to leave your headquarters. Yet when you do, Peru’s must-sees promise serious wow factor.


The birthplace of the sun and the Incas, Lake Titicaca is the largest lake in South America and the highest body of water in the world. Located in the Andes between Peru and Bolivia, the lake features many small islands. On Titicaca Island, find ruins of a temple where supposedly the founders of the Incan dynasty once frequented.


Only a half-day trip from Puno and the most visited site of Lake Titicaca, Islas Uros are human-made floating islands constructed from reed. The indigenous locals of Peru and Bolivia—the Urus—have also crafted homes and boats made entirely of reeds that grow along the shore of the lake.


Picturesque, sloping hillsides, purple peaks, and calm freshwater pools can all be seen along La Raya Pass, the highest point between Puno and Cusco. At the top of the pass you’ll find the small La Raya Market, which features local artisans and their llamas selling vibrantly colored traditional shawls and blankets.


In Arequipa, head to Yanahura for a different perspective of the city. An eclectic mix of Colonial Era churches and elegant archways surround a leafy plaza. All of this can be seen with an unbeatable view of snow-capped volcanoes that encircle Arequipa. The Plaza de Armas is also a must-see—a perfect vantage point to appreciate the city’s alternate name, “White City.”


Known as one of the world’s deepest canyons, Colca Canyon is home to soaring condors, endless trekking routes, and deep-rooted Spanish, Inca and, pre-Inca cultural traditions. Blending effortlessly with the awe-inspiring natural environment, Belmond Las Casitas is the ultimate Colca Canyon Hotel. With just 20 individual bungalows, a stay here feels a world away from the stresses of everyday life. Manmade terraced fields are stacked like staircases along the steep canyon slopes, and are still tended by farmers today. Lastly, the Calera Hot Springs is near a scenic post by the Colca River. Relax in the alfresco pool while zipliners slide across the canyon and condors soar overhead.

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