These awards won by Peru in the past year have proven the country’s lasting power on every traveler’s bucket list. Which was your favorite?
Based on the amount of awards won by Peru in 2019, it would seem it was the South American country’s best year yet—and it very well may have been, in terms of accolades. Upon closer look, however, many of the titles and recognitions were consecutive repeats—some of which have been garnered by Peru for up to eight years (and counting).
Are we bored of all the awards won by Peru? Never. It just goes to prove that there is always something new to be discovered and enjoyed in Peru.
1. Top Tourist Attraction
What’s nestled high in the Andes at an altitude of nearly 8,000 feet above sea level and is a three-time winner of the top tourist attraction in the world? Meaning “old mountain” in Peru’s indigenous Quechua language, Machu Picchu has yet to become old news to travelers of all types. The award was given to the Sacred Valley site during the 2019 edition of the World Travel Awards, the most prestigious recognition of excellence in the tourism sector.
2. Top Culinary Destination
Blame it on the unbeatable citrus flavor of a Peruvian limón, the kick of an ají pepper, the appealing effects of superfoods like maca, or any of the other ingredients native to the Andean nation that have international travel experts raving about Peruvian food. Described as the Oscars of the travel industry, the World Travel Awards bestowed the title of top culinary destination to Peru for the eighth year in a row.
3. Home to one of the most beautiful cities
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, some say; we say, it is in the naval of the world. Cusco was ranked among the 50 most beautiful cities in the world, based on the votes of over 1,000 travel experts. Considered a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the city is the gateway to Machu Picchu and so much more. Tourists are charmed by the cobble stone streets, the nearby lush valley landscapes, and the magical energy that can only be felt in a city that was once the capital of the Inca empire.
4. Best restaurant in Latin America
Eating well in Peru doesn’t require an extravagant budget—but when Peruvian chefs do fine dining they do it well. For the third year in a row chef Mitsuharu ‘Micha’ Tsumura proudly received the award for Latin America’s best restaurant for his restaurant, Maido. This was the third consecutive year the Nikkei restaurant, located in the capital city of Lima, was named the region’s top dining experience. Maido also landed in the top 10 among the 50 best restaurants in the world.
5. Best (small-scale) coffee
Size doesn’t matter—unless you are contending for the SPP Awards for best coffee. The Small Producers’ Symbol (SPP) is an intercontinental network of ecological and small-scale production organizations. In the 2019 edition of the best coffee awards, held in Boston (U.S.), 20 producers from Latin America and Asia participated. For the second consecutive year, Peru’s CAC INCAHUASI took first place. The coffee beans, cultivated in the district of Incahuasi of Cusco’s La Convención province, was of a Bourbon variety.
6. Best chocolate in the world
Dark, successful, and single (origin). The Lakuna chocolate bar from Cacaosuyo just may be your type. Using cacao beans from the Amazonas region of Peru, this 70% dark chocolate took home the award for the best chocolate in the world at the 2019 edition of the International Chocolate Awards. Award-winning and mood-boosting? No wonder the slogan of this Peruvian chocolate company is “the best kept secret of the Inkas.”
7. Top cultural destination
Is it just us, or does the World Travel Awards seem to be crushing on Peru? For the second year in a row, Peru was named the top cultural destination in the world during the 2019 WTA awards. This was the third international award given to Peru during the so-called “Oscars of the travel industry.” Living cultures abound in Peru, making it a prime travel spot to break away from what you know and be immersed in new customs and gain new experiences. From the legacy of the Incas felt in Cusco to the mystical floating islands in Puno, the diverse cultures of Peru are truly extraordinary.