In the mid-1970s, two foreigners constructed a balloon out of cotton and reed in an effort to prove that ancient cultures could have used balloons to design the mysterious Nasca Line drawings in the southern desert sands. Too bad that didn't spark a wild interest in ballooning and hang gliding in Peru. So many parts of the country would be absolutely glorious to fly silently over: the Sacred Valley, the Nasca Lines, the valleys of the Callejón de Huaylas, the magnificent pre-Columbian ruins, and the great canyons near Arequipa. Alas, the only outfitter operating balloon flights in Peru is a U.S.-owned company, Aero Sports Club of the Sacred Valley, Av. de la Cultura 220, Ste. 36, Cusco (tel. 084/232-352; www.globosperu.com), and even it offers flights on an inconsistent basis, mainly in the Urubamba Valley. If you're interested, contact the company before your trip to Peru (and have other backup plans). Flights are generally May through August only.
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