The Central Highlands Travel Guide


Photo of The Central Highlands Photo: Christian Vinces/Shutterstock

Plan Your The Central Highlands Vacation

The central highlands are where the massive Andes crash into the impenetrable South American rain forests, and winding, cloud-covered mountain roads dip down into stark desert terrain. Defying the land's complexity, its people continue to eke out a hardscrabble life that time has left unchanged.


The Central Highlands Hotels

Accommodations in the central highlands lean toward the very basic. Only the largest properties have hot water, TVs, phones, and private baths, and more


The Central Highlands Restaurants

Dining out in the central highlands is a very casual experience. Restaurants are mostly small, family-run eateries serving regional fare. Breakfast is more

Things To Do

Things To Do in The Central Highlands

Explore the best sights, entertainment, and shopping with our top choices and insider tips.


The Central Highlands Experiences

  • Top Reasons to Go

    Handicrafts: Ayacucho has retablos—three-dimensional scenes of religious and historical events. Quinua has ceramic workshops. The Mantaro Valley... Read more

  • Quechua of the Andes

    The Quechua are the original mountain highlands dwellers. Their traditions and beliefs have survived Inca domination, Spanish conquests, and... Read more

  • Sendero Luminoso (Shining Path)

    In May of 1980, burning ballot boxes in the Ayacucho region heralded the start of a civil war that would last more than a decade and claim 70,000... Read more

  • Quechua Lesson

    Here's a small sampling of Quechua words. It won't make you fluent, but people appreciate the effort when you learn a few of words of their language... Read more


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