Empowering Women and Embracing the Sacred Feminine on Journeys Through Peru

In the vast and varied landscape of Peru, a country enriched with culture, history, and nature, a remarkable movement is weaving through the fabric of its tourism sector. This movement is led by formidable women who are not only preserving the rich heritage of their ancestors but are also carving paths for the future with sustainable and regenerative tourism experiences. Each of these women shares a story, an experience, and a piece of Peru’s soul, inviting travelers to not just visit but to connect deeply with the land and its heritage.

Women in Peruvian Culture – Leaders of Yesterday and Today

From the ancient leaders of pre-Incan times to the present-day custodians of culture, women have played a crucial role in the shaping and sharing of Peruvian traditions. Their stories, often untold, echo through the ages in the remnants of female-centric temples like the Temple of the Moon and the Moche Route, revealing a society where women were venerated and essential to the spiritual and social fabric of their communities. The Amaru Muru and the sacred Lake Titicaca stand as testaments to these beliefs, embodying the feminine principle of Pachamama (Mother Earth), a concept that remains central to Andean Cosmovision. Within these sacred spaces, water—not just any water, but that from Cochas (lakes) and Puquios (springs)—is revered as a symbol of femininity and fertility, representing life itself and the connection between the Uku Pacha (the inner world) and our own.

In today’s Peru…

Our female ambassadors across various regions embody the diverse cultural heritage of the nation, setting a precedent for younger women who aspire to thrive personally and economically within the tourism sector. By fostering an environment where tradition and modernity coexist, these women not only preserve the essence of their culture but also inspire a new generation to pursue their dreams while valuing their heritage. Their commitment ensures that the rich tapestry of Peruvian traditions remains vibrant and accessible to all, forging a path that honors the past while looking forward to a sustainable future.

Huilloc ladies in Cusco Sacred Valley

Berenice and the Fusion of Tradition and Modernity in Cusco

Berenice, through her creative efforts, perfectly embodies the spirit of blending traditional values with contemporary practices. Her activities not just provide a platform for travelers to immerse in living culture but also serve as a bridge, bringing closer the past and present.

Berenice’s new way of doing tourism shows that tradition and modernity can grow together. Come to Cusco and Create a Torito de Pucará with her guidance.

Woman decorating torito de Pucara in workshop | Responsible Travel Peru
Decorating a torito de Pucara in workshop

Julia and the Coffee Route Experience in the Sacred Valley

Julia opens her home to offer a unique glimpse into the life of a Peruvian coffee grower, blending the experience with local gastronomy. Her dedication not only supports her family and community but also educates and delights travelers with the authentic essence of Peruvian agriculture and cuisine.

A couple of young travelers with Julia, one of our Coffee Route hosts, at her garden | RESPONSible Travel Peru
Nick, Julia and Renee at Julia’s house during our Coffee Route to Machu Picchu

Marilyn – A Beacon of Sustainability in Amazonas

Marilyn Velasquéz stands as a pillar within the Amazonas region, guiding visitors through the lush landscapes with a focus on sustainable and regenerative tourism. Her commitment ensures that the benefits of tourism are distributed fairly, emphasizing the recuperation of forests and ancestral wisdom.

Pedestrian hanging bridge over the river towards the Gocta waterfalls
Puente Golondrina (Swallow Bridge) on the way to the Gocta waterfalls

Sonya – Weaving Connections in Ollantaytambo

Sonia Radetsky and her initiative fosters an intimate exchange between artisans and visitors. Through her work, Sonya not only highlights the intrinsic artistry of rural communities but also aligns with sustainable tourism that respects and shares the local culture and traditions. 

Living an experience like this implies involving the poorest communities in the benefits of tourism.
Living an experience like this implies involving the poorest communities in the benefits of tourism

Seledonia – Culinary Ambassador of Cusco

Seledonia (alias Selia), with her engaging cooking classes and delightful cuisine, offers a taste of Peru that goes beyond the palette. Her efforts in sharing culinary skills and maintaining sanitary practices contribute significantly to the community and enrich the experiences of those she hosts.

Seledonia Montalvo AKA Selia in her restaurant in Cusco | RESPONSible Travel Peru
Our dear friend and cook Selia in her restaurant in Cusco

Honoring Pachamama with aunt Rosa in the Sacred Valley

In the picturesque setting of Chupani (Sacred Valley – Urubamba), aunt Rosa introduces visitors to the Pachamanca tradition and the gentle world of llamas. This experience not only offers a connection to the Earth and its bounty but also commemorates the enduring relationship between the Andean people and Pachamama, teaching visitors the sacredness of nature and communal living.

These remarkable women, through their dedication and passion, are not just preserving the legacy of their ancestors but are also leading the way in sustainable and responsible tourism. By sharing their stories and experiences, we aim not only to celebrate their achievements but also to inspire a deeper appreciation for the rich cultural tapestry of Peru and the role of women in weaving it.

The selection of these remarkable women from various regions of Peru, particularly the Cusco area, was not a matter of chance but a deliberate acknowledgment of their profound impact on sustainability, cultural preservation, and the empowerment of women in tourism. Cusco, with its rich historical significance and status as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, provides a vibrant backdrop for these stories of resilience, innovation, and tradition. Their efforts not only enhance the visitor’s experience but also contribute significantly to the local economy and the global narrative of sustainable tourism.

Llama and hiker resting at ruins in mountain landscape
The break at Inkarakay is not just to rest and enjoy the snack, but also to spend quality time with the llamas

The Singular Role of Women in the Pumachiri Association

Emphasizing the theme of female empowerment in Peru’s tourism, the Pumachiri Association is special because it is run only by women. This unique structure not only enhances the offer of immersive cultural experiences but also strengthens the narrative of women’s pivotal role in driving sustainable tourism and economic development. Visitors to the Colca Canyon are thus not only treated to the breathtaking natural beauty and rich history of the area but also become part of a larger story of empowerment and cultural preservation led by these remarkable women.

The association’s dedication to being eco-friendly, keeping traditions alive, and supporting women in tourism is a strong example of new ideas and strength. It offers travelers a great experience and makes sure that the benefits of tourism stay within the community. This shows the incredible spirit and contributions of women in building a fairer and greener future.

However, it is important to recognize that the association is not only operated by women; men, specifically the husbands of these women, also play a significant leadership role within the association. This collaborative effort underscores a model of communal support and shared responsibility, further enriching the visitor experience with diverse perspectives and unified community strength.

Travelers and locals enjoying a picnick in Coporaque, Colca Canyon, Peru | RESPONSible Travel Peru
Annika and Johanna from the RESPONS team are enjoying a typical picnick together with the Coporaque ladies

The Empowerment Journey of Solo Female Travelers

It’s important to understand how solo travel is changing, especially for women. The bravery and curiosity that push someone to explore new places alone show a spirit of independence and strength.

Solo female travelers contribute significantly to the narrative of empowerment, breaking stereotypes and building a global community that uplifts and supports women in their quest for adventure and self-discovery.

Through the stories of these remarkable women and the experiences they offer, solo travelers can find inspiration, safety, and a deep sense of belonging. Striving alone does not mean being lonely; it’s an opportunity to connect with the world and oneself on a profound level, forging unforgettable memories and relationships along the way.

Llama hike group in the Pumahuanca valley, Urubamba, with Octavio


Impactful Travel's mission is to empower transformative journeys through sustainable and responsible experiences, we are committed to enriching lives - both for travelers and local communities in Latin America.

We seek to connect meaningful tourism experiences with a committed global audience, enhancing communities and encouraging sustainable choices.

Together with you, we improve day by day, on the always-demanding path towards sustainability.


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