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Surrounded by the Peruvian Andes, at 2430m altitude above Urubamba River stands Machu Picchu, one of the most spectacular archaeological discoveries in Latin America. The Incas built the citadel around 1450, and abandoned it a century later at the time of the Spanish Conquest. Although its exact purpose still remains unknown, Machu Picchu was most likely a religious sanctuary and a residential area for the ruler Pachacuti. Considered a symbol of the Inca culture, architecture, and engineering, in 2007 the "Lost City of the Incas" was declared one of the 7 Wonders of the Modern World.

Between Cusco and Machu Picchu, in the southern region of Peruvian Andes, Valle Sagrado de Los Incas (Sacred Valley of the Incas) encompasses small colonial cities, authentic villages and an incredible array of Inca ruins. This picturesque valley stretches almost 100km, from the small town of Pisac to Aguas Calientes, the village located at the base of the mountain where Machu Picchu was built.

Whether you hike the Inca Trail for 88km to Inti Punku (the entry point to Machu Picchu), or travel by bus or car to Ollantaytambo, then arrive by train to Aguas Calientes, Cusco is the starting point for visiting Machu Picchu. In the old capital of the largest empire that has ever existed in Latin America, you'll discover dozens of impressive archaeological sites dating back to the early 12th century and catholic churches with amazing architecture.

Divided into three main geographic regions: coastal desert, mountain highland and tropical forest, Peru occupies one of the richest agricultural lands in South America. Thanks to its great cultural diversity, Peruvian cuisine is one of the most recognized worldwide, reflecting the country's rich history and traditions. Once known as "Ciudad de Los Reyes" (the City of Kings), Lima is now considered the "gastronomic capital of Latin America" and a destination that belongs on every foodie's bucket list.

Because Lima is known for its top cuisine, taking a Peruvian cooking class is a great way to discover some of the most traditional recipes and learn how to recreate them at home. With the help of a chef, visit one of Lima’s best markets to pick out fresh and local ingredients to use in your cooking. Strolling around different stands you will get an overview of the country’s diverse regions, by learning (and tasting) about exotic fruits and vegetables you have never heard of before.

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