I’d heard many compliments about the excellent Peruvian cuisine, and especially about Lima as the gastronomic capital of Peru and South America, but I couldn’t imagine the great variety of spectacular food that this country has to offer.

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Thanks to Pedro Miguel Schiaffino, a charismatic chef, very knowledgeable about the products of the country (especially the Amazon’s), I enjoyed one of the best culinary experiences of my life.

In the kitchen of his restaurant, the Malabar (with one of the best cocktail bars in the capital), we enjoyed an incredible display of creativity with a colourful menu of 8 dishes based on products that we had previously purchased together in his favourite local market. Including a very fresh corvina with which he prepared the best ceviche!

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So, as you can see, my trip to Peru got off to a good start!

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I also discovered that the capital has interesting boutique hotels full of works of art, neighbourhoods displaying new artistic trends, such as Barranco, and a whole series of restless insiders fully committed to discovering new experiences, both cultural and gastronomic.

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In the Sacred Valley, thanks to the excellent local guides of explora Valle Sagrado, we discovered that there are still isolated spots and communities in the area, living in the most traditional and authentic way.

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We walked along hidden paths that led us to archaeological Inca remains, and hiked on mountains and valleys that required a “small” physical effort, but it was worth it. We didn’t meet any tourist on the way!

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Machu Picchu is undoubtedly a place to visit at least once in your life and our private guide there showed us how important it is to visit it with someone special. His talks in Quechua with the guards of the citadel, his ability to take us around the site and his 30 years of experience were the key to transport us to the past for a few magic hours.

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This trip helped me understand that although Peru is an incredibly trendy destination nowadays, traveling there becomes a unique experience only thanks to the people who take care of you and the places where you stay, both for the details and for the authenticity.

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