Nestled in the heart of The Hague, Somos Peru invites you on a journey to discover the fascinating and lesser-known aspects of Peru. Beyond the culinary delights our restaurant offers, Peru is a country with a rich tapestry of history, culture, and natural wonders. Let’s delve into the top 10 facts that make Peru a captivating destination.
- Machu Picchu’s Mystery: Peru is home to the enigmatic Machu Picchu, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Despite extensive research, the purpose of this ancient Incan citadel remains a mystery, adding an air of intrigue to this iconic landmark. Machu Picchu receives over 1.3 million visitors annually, making it one of the most visited archaeological sites in the world.
- Biodiversity Hotspot: Peru is one of the world’s most biodiverse countries. With its diverse ecosystems ranging from the Amazon rainforest to the Andes Mountains, Peru boasts an astonishing array of flora and fauna, including more than 1,800 bird species, 3,000 types of orchids, and 4,000 varieties of butterflies.
- Lake Titicaca – The Highest Navigable Lake: Lake Titicaca, situated at an elevation of 3,812 meters, holds the title of the world’s highest navigable lake. Spanning an area of 8,372 square kilometers, the lake is shared between Peru and Bolivia, and its crystal-clear waters are home to unique species like the giant Titicaca water frog.
- Pisco – Not Just a Drink: Pisco, a grape brandy, is not only the national drink of Peru but also a source of national pride. The Pisco Sour, a cocktail made with Pisco, lemon juice, egg white, and bitters, is a must-try for anyone exploring Peruvian cuisine. Peru produces around 10 million liters of Pisco annually.
- Nazca Lines – Aerial Artistry: The mysterious Nazca Lines, etched into the Peruvian desert, form colossal geoglyphs that can only be fully appreciated from the air. Covering an area of nearly 500 square kilometers, these ancient drawings depict various animals and geometric shapes, leaving archaeologists puzzled about their purpose and origin.
- Potato Paradise: Peru is the birthplace of the potato, and its high-altitude regions are home to thousands of potato varieties. This humble tuber has been a staple in Peruvian cuisine for over 8,000 years. Peru cultivates over 4,000 varieties of potatoes, making it a global center of potato diversity.
- The Amazon River Originates in Peru: The Amazon River, the second-longest river globally, has its origins in the Peruvian Andes. The journey of this mighty river begins near the town of Chachapoyas, and it eventually flows through seven countries in South America.
- Ceviche – A Culinary Delight: Ceviche, Peru’s national dish, is a refreshing seafood dish marinated in lime juice, chili peppers, and herbs. Its unique preparation reflects the fusion of indigenous and Spanish culinary influences. Peru celebrates “National Ceviche Day” on June 28th each year.
- Maras Salt Ponds: In the Sacred Valley, the Maras salt ponds have been in operation since Incan times. The intricately terraced salt evaporation ponds create a stunning mosaic against the Andean landscape. There are over 3,000 salt ponds in Maras, producing salt through traditional methods.
- Rich Cultural Heritage: Peru is a melting pot of cultures, with influences from indigenous civilizations, Spanish colonization, and African heritage. This diversity is reflected in the vibrant traditions, music, and festivals that permeate Peruvian society. The Inti Raymi festival, celebrating the Incan sun god, is one of the most significant cultural events in Peru.
As you explore these intriguing facets of Peru, we invite you to embark on a culinary adventure at Somos Peru. Our restaurant in The Hague is not just a place to savor exquisite Peruvian dishes but also a gateway to experiencing the essence of Peru’s diverse culture and history. Join us, and let your taste buds be your guide to the wonders of Peru.