Peru's adventure sports festival tempts adrenaline addicts

7th Feb 2014

Adrenaline addicts with a love of otherworldly scenery and amazing cultural sites can find tailor-made holidays in Peru this month.

The Internacional Adventure Sports Festival Lunahuana is being staged from February 24-25.

It could make the perfect short trip for travellers on city breaks to Lima, with this small Cañete Valley village being just 187km (116 miles) south of the capital.

The festival, which has been running for more than 15 years, sees the best local sportsmen and women and ones from further afield compete in rafting (raft and kayak), rock climbing and mountain biking contests.

One of the sportiest festivals and events in Peru, it also serves the purpose of showcasing the country's advantages as a natural destination for adventure and sports holidays and eco-tourism.

Lunahuana is seen as something of a magical place, appearing almost from nowhere to reveal itself as a narrow strip of green amid the shining, dusty desert.

The village's renowned suspension bridge, Puente Colgante, also seems to be built for adventurous types, hanging precariously over the Rio Cañete's unwelcoming rapids.

Even the local cuisine calls for daredevil palates, with guinea pigs on the menu.

For those less intrepid, there's always the staple of shrimp or duck with rice, prepared in clay pots and wooden stoves.

Such energy could build up a thirst - and tourists are ideally placed with the venerable La Reyna de Lunahuana.

This establishment, which overlooks the main plaza, is one of the oldest, most revered wineries for miles around.

Its owners can tell you all about pico (Peruvian grape brandy) and wine production.

If extreme sports aren't your bag, Incahuasi is the most famous archaeological site in the Cañete Valley.

The ruins of the military headquarters of the 10th Inca king Túpac Yupanqui lay on the western outskirts of Lunahuana - right off the beaten track for tourists who prefer their attractions real and rough-edged.

Copyright Press Association 2014


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