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Peru

Peru

PERU INFORMATION

History!!!

Peru was once part of the great Incan Empire and later the major vice-royalty of Spanish South America. It was conquered in 1531–1533 by Francisco Pizarro. On July 28, 1821, Peru proclaimed its independence, but the Spanish were not finally defeated until 1824. For a hundred years thereafter, revolutions were frequent; a new war was fought with Spain in 1864–1866, and an unsuccessful war was fought with Chile from 1879 to 1883 (the War of the Pacific).

Peru emerged from 20 years of dictatorship in 1945 with the inauguration of President José Luis Bustamente y Rivero after the first free election in many decades. But he served for only three years and was succeeded in turn by Gen. Manuel A. Odria, Manuel Prado y Ugarteche, and Fernando Belaúnde Terry. On Oct. 3, 1968, Belaúnde was overthrown by Gen. Juan Velasco Alvarado. In 1975, Velasco was replaced in a bloodless coup by his prime minister, Gen. Francisco Morales Bermudez, who promised to restore civilian government. In elections held on May 18, 1980, Belaúnde Terry, the last civilian president, was elected president again.

The Maoist guerrilla group Shining Path, or Sendero Luminoso, began their brutal campaign to overthrow the government in 1980. The military’s subsequent crackdown led to further civilian human rights abuses and disappearances. A smaller rebel group, Tupac Amaru, also fought against the government. About 69,000 people were killed during the 1980–2000 wars between rebel groups and the government. The deaths were carried out by the rebels (54%) as well as the military (30%); other militias were responsible for the remainder.

Peru

Capital Lima. Population: 8.5 million (2007).

Area.- 1,285,220 sq km (496,225 sq miles).

Population 30 million The population of the country is largely Indian and Mestizo

Time GMT – 5.

Government.- Republic.

Gained independence from Spain in 1824, having declared it in 1821.

President.- Pedro Pablo Kuczynski – Since 2016

Religion 81% Roman Catholic, 2.7% other denominations, 16.3% unspecified or none.

Language:

Although the majority of city and town dwellers speak Spanish, Qechua is spoken in most mountain areas and Aymara /Spanish on the Lake titicaca Islands.

many people in City tourism areas speak English.

Electricity.- 220 volts AC, 60Hz. (110 volts AC is available in most 4- and 5-star hotels.)

Peru is a large, mountainous country on the Pacific coast of South America that borders Ecuador and Colombia to the north, Brazil and Bolivia to the east, and Chile to the south. The Pacific Ocean lies to the west.

There are three natural zones:

The Costal.- Region, which contains Lima (the capital), is a narrow coastal plain consisting of large tracts of desert broken by fertile valleys. The cotton, sugar and rice plantations and most of the so-far exploited oil fields lie in this area, as does the majority of the population.

The highland Sierra.- Contains the Andes, with peaks over 6,000m (20,000ft), most of the country’s mineral resources (silver, zinc, lead, copper and gold) and the greater part of its livestock.

The Jungle.- An area of fertile, subtropical land, lies between the Andes and the borders with Brazil, Bolivia, Colombia and Ecuador. The Amazonian jungle has vast natural resources. The absence of land communications, however, left the area largely uncharted until full-scale oil exploration began in 1973. Even today roads barely penetrate the region.

Climate

Varies according to area. On the coast winter lasts from June to September. During this period, the mountainous areas are often sunny during the day but cold at night. This is high tourist season and the best time to visit most regions. Heavy rains in the mountains and jungle last from December to April. It hardly ever rains in Lima nor most of the coast, except for Tumbes and Piura, which have tropical climates.

CUSCO information specific to Cusco

Altitude sickness, also known as acute mountain sickness (AMS), altitude illness, hypobaropathy, or Soroche, is a pathological effect of high altitude on humans, caused by acute exposure to low partial pressure of oxigen at high altitude. It commonly occurs above 2,400 metres (approximately 8,000 feet). Acute mountain sickness can progress to high altitude pulmonary edema (HAPE) or high altitude cerebral edema (HACE).The causes of altitude sickness are not fully understood. The percentage of oxygen in air remains essentially constant with altitude at 21% up until 70,000 feet (21,330 m), but the air pressure (and therefore the number of oxygen molecules) drops as altitude increases — consequently, the available amount of oxygen to sustain mental and physical alertness decreases above 10,000 feet (3,050m). Altitude sickness usually does not affect persons traveling in aircraft because the cabin altitude in modern passenger aircraft is kept to 8,000 feet (2,440 m) or lower. A superficially related condition is chronic mountain sickness, also known as Monge’s disease, occurring only after prolonged exposure to high altitude. An unrelated condition, often confused with altitude sickness, is dehydration, due to the higher rate of water vapor lost from the lungs at higher altitudes.

Those who ascend rapidly to altitudes greater than 2500m (8100 ft) may develop altitude sickness. In Peru, this includes Cusco ( 3326m) and Lake Titicaca (3820m). Being physically fit offers no protection. Those who have experienced altitude sickness in the past are prone to future episodes. The risk increases with faster ascents, higher altitudes and greater exertion. Symptoms may include headaches,nausea,vomiting,dizziness,malaise, imsomnia and loss of appetite. Severe cases may be complicated by fluids in the lungs (high-altitude pulmonary edema) or swelling of the brain (high-altitude cerebral edema) If symptoms are more than mild or persist for more than 24 hours (far less at high altitudes), descend immediately by at least 500 meters and see a doctor.

To help prevent altitude sickness, the best measure is to spend two nights or more at each rise of 1000m. Alternatively, take 125mg or 250mg of acetozolamide (Diamox) twice or three times daily starting 24 hours before ascent and continuing for 48 hours after arrival at altitude. Possible side effects include increased urinary volume, numbness, tingling, nausea,drowsiness, myopia and temporary impotence. Acetazolamide should not be given to pregnant women or anyone with a history of sulfa allergy. For those who cannot tolerate acetazolamide, the next best option is 4mg of dexamethasone taken four times daily. Unlike acetazolamide, dexamethasone must be tapered gradually upon arrival at altitude, since there is a risk that altitude sickness will occur as the dosage is reduced.

Dexamethasone is a steroid, so it should not be given to diabetics or anyone for whom taking sterorids is not adviced. A natural alternative is gingko, which some people find quite helpful.

When traveling to high altitudes, it´s also important to evoid overexertion, eat light meals and abstain from alcohol. Altitude sickness should be taken seriously, it can be life threatening when severe.

Cusco Tourist Ticket (Boleto Turistico) this visitors ticket costs 130 soles. (half price for students) and is valid for 10 days..

The full Cusco Tourist Ticket ticket allows you entry to 15 sites These sites which are part of the City tour are Sacsayhuaman / Qenko/Puca Pucara/Tambo Machay and these sites which are visited in the Sacred Valley tour are Pisac/Ollantaytambo/Chinchero plus other sites in Cusco such as Religious Art Museum / Church of San Blas / Regional History Museum

The entrance to Moray is included on the full ticket and is used when doing the mountain biking tour

Cusco Tourist Ticket is sold at the sites themselves and can be bought on the day of tour if you like.

Note: This ticket does not include: Entrance to Koricancha (or Qorikancha) 15 soles. Entrance to Cathedral 25 soles (the visit of the Cathedral is optional as many people prefer not to visit now that it is more expensive so there is the option to have afternoon tea in a restored Colonial house / hotel if you prefer during this part of the City tour)

Alternatively you can purchase a partial ticket for 70 soles which allows a one day only visit of just the 4 Archeological sites if you are not planning to visit any of the Sacred Valley sites such as Pisac, Ollantaytambo, Chincheros or a one day only partial ticket to visit the Sacred Valley sites such as Pisac, Ollantaytambo, Chincheros ( Moray ) if you are not going to have time to visit the 4 Archeological sites of Saqsayhuaman /Qenqo /Pucapucara /Tambomachay.

The partial.- Ticket for 70 soles does not allow for any further discount for ISIC card holders. Student partial ticket cost is also 70 soles

Shopping

There are many attractive Peruvian handicrafts such as alpaca wool sweaters, alpaca and llama rugs, Indian masks, colourful weaving and silver jewellery. Galleries and handicraft shops abound in Cusco (Avenida El Sol) near the wanchaq train station there is a big market and outdoor Andean craft markets in places such as Pisac in the Sacred Valley are famous.

RECOMMENDED PLACES TO EAT! We are always wanting to update this info with suggestions from travelers so please let us know your recommendations!

RECOMMENDED RESTAURANTS we have a full list in our Cusco office

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