The Inkaterra Orchid Trail contains a world record number of endemic species, which includes the world’s largest orchid, Phragmipedium caudatum, as well as small species that can be seen only with a magnifying glass, and others new to science.
Peru is one of the world’s few countries that is classified as megadiverse, and one of its treasures is the variety and quantity of its orchids. Considering that the country has more than 10% of the total number of species in the world (around 30,000), there is a good reason why Peru boasts this claim. With great dedication and effort, Inkaterra Asociacion (ITA) has built an admirable sanctuary at the Inkaterra Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel. An orchid trail has been created as a result of work carried out with the “Centro de Investigacion y Conservacion de Machu Picchu”. You can see 372 native species —consisting of 80 genera— at least 15 of which are newly discovered. A number of distinguished scientists and observers have already visited the Trail. Despite our meagre knowledge of the subject, we have visited a couple of times. A visit when the orchids are in flower is fantastic. The most intense colours and shapes intertwine with the rainforest foliage and there is something new round every corner. It is a trail to approach calmly, so as to see beauty in its purest form. And don’t forget to take a camera.
Credit: Ultimate Journeys Peru
Cover photo: Wikimedia
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