In the Province of Callao, region of Lima is located the international airport Jorge Chavez. All the airline companies KLM , AMERICAN AIRLINES, DELTA AIRLINES, LAN AIRLINES and others arrive here.
Take a tour around Peru, Tours in Cusco, Puno, Machu Picchu, Paracas, LakeTiticaca, Nazca lines, Puerto Maldonado, Colca Canyon and many others.
Dances of our native origin, there are dances that are related to the agricultural work, hunting, and war. Two of the most representative Andean dances are the Wayno or Huayno and the Kashua. The Huayno is a “salon ball”. It is danced in couples and in closed spaces.
Huayno is a genre of popular Andean music, especially common in Peru and Bolivia. It is combination of traditional music of the rural folk in the area with popular urban dance music. High-pitched vocals are accompanied by a variety of instruments, including flute, harp, panpipe, accordion, saxophone, charangos, lute, violin, guitar, harmonica and mandolin. Huayno utilizes a distinctive rhythm, in which the first beat is stressed and followed by two short beats.
The Huayno is an important Andean genre of dance and music of pre-Hispanic origin and at present very wide spread among the Andean people. Huayno adopts diverse forms according to the local or regional traditions and certain forms it represents the popular adherence to the culture of the land. Huayno is an excellent example of typical Andean dance. People in the mountains Cusco, Ayacucho, Puno, Arequipa, Cajamarca, Junin, and other regions in the mountains dance huayno.
The dance begins with a man offering his arm to the women as an invitation for her to dance. Alternatively, he puts his handkerchief on the shoulder of the woman. Next, the partners walk along an enclosure, and finally they dance. The dance consists of an agile and vigorous stamping of the feet during which the man fallows the woman, opposite to front, touching her with his shoulders after having turned around, and only occasionally he touches his right arm to the left hand of his partner while both swing to the rhythm of the music. His movements are happy and roguish.
The musical rhythm consists of a base pentatónica from binary rhythm, structural characteristic that has allowed this genre to turn into the base of a series of hybrid rhythms, from the Chicha up to the Andean Rock. The instruments that intervene in the execution of the Huayno are the quena, the small guitar, the mandolin, harp and the violin.
In variants of the huayno there are typical bands which add instruments such as the trumpets, the saxophone or accordion.
The Kashua has a communal character and it is usually danced in groups in the country or open spaces. These songs are usually songs with very emotional lyrics.
Dances of ritual Character are the Achocallo, the Pinkillada, the Llamera (dance that imitates the Llama´s walk ), the Kullawada ( the spinner´s dance ), etc. Between the Hunting dances, it can be mentioned: the Llipi-puli and Choqelas. They are dances from the Altiplano related to the vicuña´s hunting.
There are some dances of war like the Chiriguano which has an Aymara origin, the Chatripuli that satirizes the Spanish Realist soldiers, and the Kenakenas a dance about the Chilian soldiers who occupied Peru diring the war of the Pacific in 1879. There are also Carnival dances. A Carnival is a western holiday that, in the Peruvian Andes, is celebrated simultaneously with the crops time. Many ruarl communities celebrate the youth´s initiation during these holidays with ancestral rites and dances.
Marinera is a dance of Peru. Marinera is a graceful and romantic couple´s dance that uses handkerchiefs as props. The dance is an elegant and stylized reenactment of a courtship. Traditional accompanient for the dance is proviced by a Cajon, guitar and bugles.
This is the most international know dance in Peru. This dance represents a man´s courting of a young woman. There are local variants of this dance in Lima and the other regions of the country.
Popular celebrations are the product of every town´s traditions and legends. These celebrations gather music, dances, meals and typical drinks. In addition to the religious celebrations like Christmas or Holy Week.
Festejo is a dance which is a mixture of various Afro-Peruvian dance culture, which dates to the 17th century, when large numbers of Africans came to Peru. The dance is from the central coast of Peru and it is usually performed by couples dress in colorful costumes with joyful body movements without physical contact. The celebration brings out the elegance, rhythm and high energy of this popular Peruvian dance. The music of Festejo dance has a leading vocalist and backing singers and it is played with native Peruvian musical instrument: "Cajon" (wooden box,) Cajita (small wooden box,) and Quijada de Burro (donkey's jaw.) and other instruments such as the Guitar, Congas, Tumba, and Bongó among others.
DANCE IN PERU AFRO-PERUVIAN
There are many places where you can see dances of Peru. Visit DAMA JUANA . It is a place where you will see lots of different dances of Peru. DAMA JUANA is situated in Lima downtown. Miraflores district. Write us to take you over there.
Peru has a province called Pisco and there people produce pisco.
Pisco (from Quechua: pisqu, little bird) is a liquor distilled from grapes (a brandy) made in wine-producing regions of Peru and Chile. It is the most widely consumed spirit in Peru, Bolivia and Chile.
The right to produce Pisco as an exclusive cultural commodity has been the centre of a dispute between Chile and Peru because it is produced and consumed by both Chileans and Peruvians, and both countries consider it their national drink.
The iconic cocktail in these countries is the pisco sour but Peru is the country were Pisco sour was born.
restaurants in lima
La Rosa Nautica
When choosing a restaurant, one of the things to consider is the cuisine - its quality, diversity and flavors. But you must also consider the atmosphere, the magic and exclusivity of the place you have chosen. La Rosa Náutica fulfills both of these demands to perfection.
Together with a group of professionals in gastronomy, the renowned peruvian chef Enrique Blondet creates the most complete menu of Peruvian and International specialties. In November 2001, his exquiste creations delighted the participants of the XI Iberoamerican Summit of Heads of State and Governments, including the King of Spain.
The restaurant's four dining areas, and its sophisticated bar "El Espigón" , rising from the midst of the ocean, allow the visitor to enjoy a magical experience, which can only be possible in a place of fantasy, capriciously constructed in the middle of the sea.
Because of this wonderful location, the horizon, especially at the crucial sunset hour, can be best appreciated through the large windows or ample terraces.
As you can see, the quality of the cuisine and bar, and the high level of service in a place with exquisite architecture, are the reasons that La Rosa Náutica is a five star restaurant, and the place of choice for world leaders in the business, social and political fields. Allow yourself to be led by our compass. Your spirit will be grateful.
Señorio de Sulco
This restaurant recreates the history—from pre-Inca to the present;of Peruvian cuisine in all its diversity. Typical dishes from the coast, sierra and jungle areas of Peru include the ají de gallina (spicy pepper chicken), papa a la huancaína (potatoes Huancaína) and lomo saltado (sauteed steak). Top the meal off, accompanied by gentle piano, with the traditional dessert suspiro a la limeña, a port and cinnamon-kissed delicacy. The restaurant is located at the Miraflores harbor, affording a lovely ocean view.
Peruvian cuisine is usually considered one of the most diverse in the world and is on par with French, Chinese and Indian cuisine. In January 2004, while at the Fourth International Summit of Gastronomy Madrid Fusion 2006, regarded as the world's most important gastronomic forum, held in Spain between January 17th and 19th, Lima was declared the "Gastronomic Capital of the Americas".
Thanks to its pre-Inca and Inca heritage and to Spanish, Basque, African, Japanese and finally Italian, French and Britain immigration (mainly throughout the 19th century), Peruvian cuisine combines the flavors of four continents. With the eclectic variety of traditional dishes, the Peruvian culinary arts are in constant evolution, and impossible to list in their entirety. Suffice it to mention that along the Peruvian coast alone there are more than two thousand different types of soups, and that there are more than 250 traditional desserts.
There are many restaurants specializing in Peruvian cuisine in many different cities throughout the world. There are here some examples of Peruvian dishes. The following are just a few of the many dishes which are generally popular with the Peruvians. Some of these originated in other parts of Peru but most are well known and can be found in some part of Lima.
Peruvian cuisine is considered one of the most diverse in the world and is on par with French, Chinese and Indian cuisine. In January 2004, The Economist said that "Peru can lay claim to one of the world's dozen or so great cuisines" , while at the Fourth International Summit of Gastronomy Madrid Fusión 2006, regarded as the world's most important gastronomic forum, held in Spain between January 17th and 19th, Lima was declared the "Gastronomic Capital of the Americas" .
Thanks to its pre-Inca and Inca heritage and to Spanish, Basque, African, Sino-Cantonese, Japanese and finally Italian, French and British immigration (mainly throughout the 19th century), Peruvian cuisine combines the flavors of four continents. With the eclectic variety of traditional dishes, the Peruvian culinary arts are in constant evolution, and impossible to list in their entirety. Suffice it to mention that along the Peruvian coast alone there are more than two thousand different types of soups, and that there are more than 250 traditional desserts.
There are many restaurants specializing in Peruvian cuisine in many different cities throughout the world.
Peru is considered an important center for the genetic diversity of the world's crops:
Maize (AKA corn), 35 varieties
Tomatoes, 15 species
Potatoes, 4,000 varieties. The International Potato Center, which goes by its Spanish name's initials (CIP short for Centro Internacional de la Papa) that is devoted to the investigation and genetic conservation of the potato, is located in Lima, Peru.
Sweet potatoes, 2,016 varieties
Peanuts are found as decorative pieces made of gold in several pre-Columbiam tombs. They were later taken by Spanish and Portuguese merchants to Africa. Thereafter peanuts were introduced in the American south by African slaves.
Fish, 2,000 species of fish, both freshwater and saltwater (more than any other country on Earth)
Fruit, 650 native species. It is also famed for its large number of species of bananas. The variety of climate itself can provide for the bringing of fruits from all the world.
From Peru, the Spanish brought back to Europe foods which would become staples for many peoples around the world.
Potatoes: Potatoes, originally from Peru, were considered livestock feed in Europe until French chemist Antoine-Augustin Parmentier began serving dishes made from the tubers at his lavish banquets. His guests were immediately convinced that potatoes were fit for human consumption. Parmentier's introduction of the potato is still discussed in Europe today.
Maize: Maize is native to all of Central and South America.
Tomatoes: Tomatoes were introduced to Europe from Latin America.
And many other food products.
Some plants that were cultivated by the ancient societies of Peru have now been rediscovered by modern Peruvians and are carefully studied by scientists. Due to the characteristics of its land and climate and due to the nutritional quality of its products, some Peruvian plants will play a vital role in the nutrition of the future: this is true for quinoa, which is an excellent source of essential amino acids, and kañiwa which appear to be and are prepared like cereals but are not cereals. Root vegetables such as maca and real cereals like kiwicha are also plants nutritionists are researching today.
For many of Peru's inhabitants, these foodstocks allow for adequate nutrition even though living standards are poor. The abandoning of many of these staples during the Spanish domination and republican eras has brought down nutritional levels in the country.
Some of these foodstocks have been used since 1985 by NASA for astronaut food, like quinoa, kiwicha and maca.
Peruvian cuisine is often made spicy by means of ají pepper, a basic ingredient. Some Peruvian chili peppers are not spicy but serve to give color to dishes. Rice often accompanies dishes in Peruvian cuisine, and the regional sources of foods and traditions give rise to countless varieties of preparation and dishes.
Fine Peruvian cuisine emphasizes the mix of colors and ingredients, in a dynamically growing restaurateur industry and trends lead by young and talented chefs.
The following are just a few of the many dishes which are generally popular with the Peruvians. Some of these originated in other parts of Peru but most are well known and can be found in some part of Lima.
Peru is a country that holds not just a variety of ethnic mixes since times ranging from the Inca Empire, the Viceroyalty and the Republic, but also a climatic variety that sometimes is not believed by outsiders: 28 of a possible 32 world climates. The mixing of cultures and the variety of climates differ from city to city so geography, climate, culture and ethnic mix determine the variety of local cuisine.
CUISINE OF THE ANDES (MOUNTAINS)
In the valley and plains of the Andes, the locals' diet continues to be based on corn (maize), potatoes, and an assortment of tubers as it has been for many hundreds of years. Meat comes from indigenous animals like alpacas and guinea pigs, but also from imported livestock like sheep and swine.
As with many rural cultures, most of the more elaborate dishes were reserved for festivities, while daily meals were simple affairs. Nowadays, the festive dishes are consumed every day, although they tend to be on the heavy side and demand a large appetite.
Cuy chactado - A dish more popular in the highlands is this meal of fried guinea pig. Often the indigenous women of the Peruvian Andes will raise the guinea pigs in their huts where they run around loose on the floors of the dwellings. Prior to consumption they can reach a surprisingly large size. Besides the use of guinea pigs as separate meals, they are often cooked in a Pachamanca with other meats and vegetables.
Pachamanca is a very special banquet in and of itself. Cooked all over the Andean region of Peru, is made from a variety of meats (including pork and beef), herbs and a variety of vegetables that are slowly cooked underground on a bed of heated stones. It demands skillful cooks to create and a large number of guests to consume. Because of its tedious preparation it is normally only done for celebrations or festivals in the Andes, though recent years have seen the appearance of many "campestre" restaurants outside Lima where urban families can escape to spend an afternoon in the fresh air eating pachamanca. Such as in Cieneguilla a good place to eat Pachamanca.
Olluquito con charqui is another typical Andean dish. Olluco is a yellowish tuber (Ullucus tuberosus) domesticated by pre-Inca populations, and is visually similar to colorful small Andean potatoes, but with a distinct crunchy texture when cooked. Charqui is the technique employed in the Andean highlands to cure meat by salting, then dehydration. The dish is a stew of finely diced ollucos with charqui pieces (traditionally alpaca, or less frequently llama meat, though today it is also very commonly made from sheep), served with white rice.
Rocoto relleno - Arequipa dish made from stuffed rocoto chilis. Rocotos are one of the very hot (spicy) chilis of Peru. In this dish they are stuffed with spiced beek or pork, onions, olives, egg white and then cooked in the oven with potatoes covered with cheese and milk.
CUISINE OF THE JUNGLE
Naturally, jungle cuisine is made using the products local to the area. Although many animal species are hunted for food in the biologically diverse jungle, two standouts are the Paiche (the world's largest freshwater fish) and turtles. Hunting turtles is prohibited in Peru, therefore turtle-based dishes are scarce and expensive and not sold in menu restaurants. Juane, Tacacho.
CUISINE OF LIMA
Ceviche, often spelled "cebiche" in Peru, is the flagship dish of coastal cuisine, and one of Peru's favorites. It is the quintessence of fusion: Andean chili peppers, onions and acidic aromatic lime, of a species imported by the Spanish, though with origins in Northern Africa "limon" in Spanish). A spicy dish, it consists generally of bite-size pieces of white fish (such as corvina or white sea bass), marinated raw in lime or lemon juice mixed with chilis. Ceviche is served with raw onions, boiled sweet potatoes (camote), toasted corn (cancha), and sometimes a local green seaweed yuyo. Leche de tigre (tiger's milk), is the Peruvian colloquial name for the juice produced from the ingredients of ceviche. It has a light spicy flavor and serves as a good reconstituent. Local custom recommends ceviche as a breakfast for sleepwalkers, a hangover cure and as an aphrodisiac. Unlike ceviche from Mexico and Ecuador, it does not have tomatoes, and unlike that of Tahiti it does not use coconut milk, though both are abundant in Peru. A variation available in Callao replaces mango for fish.
Papas a la huancaina (Huancayo-style potatoes), a dish consisting of sliced boiled potatoes, served on a bed of lettuce with a slightly spicy cheese sauce with olives. Even if the name says that it is from Huancayo, it is actually from Chosica, in Lima, made by a "Huancaina" (a person from Huancayo).
Anticuchos are brochettes made from a beef heart marinated in a various Peruvian spices and grilled, often sided with boiled potatoes and corn. They are commonly sold by street vendors and served shish kabob-style, but you may find them in creole food restaurants. They are frequently sold by street vendors.
Chicharrones a dish consisting of deep-fried (in its own fat) and heavily salted pork.
Cau cau is a meal consisting of mondongo or tripe stew and accompanied by rice. This to have African and Chinese influence along Italian.
Escabeche criollo (pickled fish) - "Escabeche" when the word is used alone normally refers to escabeche of fish. Other varieties can use duck or chicken. The escabeche dishes rely in the cooking on the heavy use of vinegar and onions together with other spices and chili.
Aji de gallina (chili chicken) is thin strips of chicken served with a creamy yellow and spicy sauce, made basically with ají amarillo (yellow chilis), cheese, milk, bread, and walnuts. Traditionally from non-laying hens, but today almost exclusvely made from more tender chickens.
Carapulcra is an appetizing stewed dish of pork and chicken, dried potatoes, red chilis, peanuts and cumin. The version from the Afro-Peruvian Ica region uses fresh potatoes.
Causa in its basic form is a mashed yellow potato dumpling mixed with lemon, onion, chili and oil. Varieties can have avocado, chicken, tuna (typically canned) or even shellfish added to the mixture. Also Causa is very popular in Lima which distinguishes this dish by saying Causa Limeña Causa is usually served cold with hard boiled eggs and olives.
Papa Rellena (stuffed potato) - mashed potatoes stuffed with ground (minced) meat, eggs, olives and various spices and then deep fried.
Tamales, boiled corn with meat or cheese and wrapped in a banana leaf. This consists of corn mixed with spices, sugar, onions, filled with pork and olives and finally wrapped in the leaves of corn husks. Tamales are a common breakfast food, often served with "Salsa Criolla." (Slides of onions and limon juice and chili).
Lomo Saltado, sliced beef (if made from the tenderloin it is "lomo fino") sauteed with onion, tomato, soy sauce, vinegar, chili (aji) and served or mixed with French fried potatoes (aka "chips"), and accompanied with rice.
Chupe de camarones (shrimp cioppino) is one of the most popular dishes of Peruvian coastal cuisine. It is made from a thick freshwater shrimp (crayfish) stock soup, potatoes, milk and chili pepper. Regarded as typical from Arequipa (a beautiful southern Andean city in Peru), Chupe de Camarones is regularly found in Peruvian restaurants specialized in Arequipan cuisine.
Tiradito is the younger brother of ceviche, and shows more clearly the influence that Japanese cooks have had in Peru's seafood cuisine (though some suggest that it's closer to Italian carpaccio, popularized by Genovese immigrants). The fish is sliced in fine strips (about 6 cm by 2 cm) that are similar to sashimi, and then marinated in a mix of lime juice, ginger and ají limo. Unlike ceviche, tiradito lacks onions, which translates into a subtler taste.
Arroz con Pollo, or rice with chicken, is enjoyed for its rich-flavored rice combined with chicken. The rice is a little green.
Chifa from the mandarin words "chi fan", meaning 'to eat rice') is the Peruvian term for chinese food (or for a Chinese restaurant). In the 150 years since its arrival in Peru, the Chinese Peruvian culture has revolutionized Peruvian cuisine, gaining international recognition from those who have had the opportunity to sample it while visiting Peru
reflects a fusion by Chinese Peruvians of the products that the Chinese brought with them to those that they found in Peru, and later cultivated themselves. Even some Peruvian dishes such as tacu-tacu, lomo saltado, and arroz chaufa were influenced by the Chinese.
In downtown Lima, on Capon Street, is the barrio chino (Chinatown). The great variety of savory and sweet dishes there, with different types of meats, the following are just a few of the many dishes which are generally popular with the Peruvians. Some of these originated in other parts of Peru but most are well known and can be found in some part of Lima.
Lima has an abundance of Peruvian-style Chinese restaurants or "chifas" as they are known locally; indeed, arroz chaufa or Chinese style rice is one of the frequently sampled dishes that has found its way into Peruvian cuisine.
Alfajores - a common dessert made in several varieties. The basic recipe makes use of a base mix of flour, lemon rind, margarine, and powdered sugar which is then oven-baked. Alfajores consist of two or more layers of this baked pastry, and is usually filled with either manjar blanco (a caramel-colored, sweet, creamy filling made with milk and sugar) or molasses.
Turrones (or nougat) (similar to fudge) are of several varieties. One common variety to be found in Lima is Turrón de Doña Pepa, an anise and honey nougat that is traditionally prepared for the Señor de los Milagros (or Lord of Miracles) procession, during October. Turrones are most commonly made from almonds, and can be found in Spanish-speaking countries all over the world.
Mazamorra morada is a dessert typical of Peru. A variety of purple corn (maiz morado) grows in Peru that colors and adds a particular flavor to the water in which it is boiled. When that water is cooled and chopped fruit, lemon and sugar is added, and the mixture is served as a beverage, its name is "chicha morada”.
Picarones are pumpkin fritters that are also eaten as late-afternoon street food during El Señor de los Milagros celebrations. This is another dish that has its origins in the colonial period. Some believe they are a local adaptation of Spanish buñuelos. Picarones are made of squash or pumpkin dough and sweetened with chancaca, raw cane sugar melted into syrup. It is a good dessert.
SOFT DRINKS AND ALCOHOLIC DRINKS
Coca tea is a hot drink as tea which the only difference is that this hot drink is made from coca leaves.
Inca Kola - the brand of a popular fizzy soda drink (gaseosa), which is a cultural icon, served literally on the most humble to the most exclusive tables nationwide, alone or with any type of food. Yellow in color, it is sweet and refreshing. Some compare its flavor to bubble gum. Inca Kola is the only national beverage in the world that beat worldwide Coca-Cola in sales.
Té of uña de gato. A tea made from a plant from the Amazon, cat's claw (Uncaria tomentosa), known for its healing or medicinal properties.
Pisco, a kind of brandy, is considered by many to be the national drink of Peru. This distilled beverage made from grapes is produced in various regions of the country.
Pisco Sour is a cocktail made from pisco combined with lemon juice, the white of an egg, sugar and some ice.
Wines come from many different regions of the country, most notably from the Ica Region.
Beer as in many countries is popular in all levels of society. Local brands include Pilsen and Cristal. A couple of regional beers are Arequipeña and Cuzqueña, from Cusco respectively; though Cuzqueña is popular nationwide and is exported worldwide. A common beer drinking ritual among many Peruvian men involves a group sharing one glass. The party holding the bottle waits for the prior person to drink from the glass before receiving that glass, filling it and passing the bottle on to the next in line. While this custom is more common among men of lower echelons of society, people of higher social status, particularly youth and occasionally women, take part in this custom.
Chicha de Jora is another well-known drink, based on different varieties of fermented and different aromatic herbs, depending on the region of the country. Its consumption is mostly limited to the Andes area
Chicha morada a beverage prepared from a base of boiled purple maize to which are added chunks of Pineapple, sugar, and ice as it cools. Do not confuse with the fermented beverage chicha de jora.
ANIMALS LOOK LIKE CAMELS
The llama is a South American camelid, widely used as a pack animal by the Incas and other natives of the Andes mountains. In South America llamas are still used for beasts of burden, fiber production and meat.
The height of a full-grown, full-size llama is between 5.5 feet (1.6 meters) to 6 feet (1.8 meters) tall at the top of the head. They can weigh approximately between 280 pounds (127 kilograms) and 450 pounds (204 kilograms). At birth, a baby llama (called a cria) can weigh between 20 pounds (9 kilograms) to 30 pounds (14 kilograms). Llamas are very social animals and like to live with other llamas as a herd. Overall, the fiber produced by a llama is very soft and is naturally lanolin free. Very intelligent, llamas learn simple tasks after a few repetitions. When using a pack, llamas can carry about 25% - 30% of their body weight for several miles.
Llamas originated from the central plains of North America about 40 million years ago. They migrated to South America and Asia about 3 million years ago. By the end of the last ice-age (10,000 - 12,000 years ago) camelids were extinct in North America. As of 2007, there were over 7 million llamas and alpacas in South America and due to importation from South America in the late 20th Century there are now over 100,000 llamas and 6,500 - 7,000 alpacas in the US and Canada.
Although they were often compared by early writers to sheep and spoken of as such, their similarity to the camel was very soon perceived. They were included in the genus Camelus in the Systema Naturae of Linnaeus. They were, however, separated by Cuvier in 1800 under the name of llama along with the alpaca and the guanaco. Vicuñas are in genus Vicugna. The animals of the genus Lama are, with the two species of true camels, the sole existing representatives of a very distinct section of the "Artiodactyla" or even-toed ungulates, called Tylopoda, or "bump-footed," from the peculiar bumps on the soles of their feet, on which they tread. This section thus consists of a single family, the Camelidae, the other sections of the same great division being the Suina or pigs, the Tragulina or chevrotains, and the Pecora or true ruminants, to each of which the Tylopoda have more or less affinity, standing in some respects in a central position between them, borrowing as it were some characters from each, but in others showing great special modifications not found in any of the other sections.
The discoveries of a vast and previously unsuspected extinct fauna of the American continent of the Tertiary period, as interpreted by the palaeontologists Leidy, Cope, and Marsh, has thrown a flood of light upon the early history of this family, and upon its relations to other mammals. It is now known that llamas at one time were not confined to the part of the continent south of the Isthmus of Panama, as at the present day, for their remains have been abundantly found in the Pleistocene deposits of the region of the Rocky Mountains, and in Central America, some attaining a much larger size than those now existing. Some species of llamas did stay in North America during the last ice ages. 25,000 years ago, llamas would have been a common sight in modern-day California, Texas, New Mexico, Utah, Missouri, and Florida. These North American llamas belong to a single genus, Hemiauchenia, which is extinct.
Many camel-like animals exhibiting different genetic modifications and a gradual series of changes, coinciding with the antiquity of the deposits in which they are found, have been traced from the thoroughly differentiated species of the modern epoch down through the Pliocene to the early Miocene beds. Their characters having become more generalized, they have lost all that especially distinguishes them as Camelidae: they are merged into forms common to the ancestral type of all the other sections of the Artiodactyles.
So far none of these annectant forms have been found in any of the fossiliferous strata of the Old World; it may therefore be fairly surmised (according to the evidence at present before us) that the Americas were the original home of the Tylopoda, and that the true camels have passed over into the Old World, probably by way of north Asia. Gradually driven southward, perhaps by changes of climate, and having become isolated, they have undergone further special modifications. Meanwhile, those members of the family that remained in their original birthplace have become, through causes not clearly understood, restricted solely to the southern or most distant part of the continent. There are few groups of mammals for which the palaeontological history has been so satisfactorily demonstrated as the llama.
The Alpaca is a domesticated species of South American camelid developed from the wild alpacas. It resembles a sheep in appearance, but is larger and has a long erect neck as well as coming in many colors, whereas sheep are generally bred to be white and black.
Alpacas are kept in herds that graze on the level heights of the Andes of Ecuador, southern Peru, northern Bolivia, and northern Chile at an altitude of 3500 to 5000 meters above sea-level, throughout the year.  Alpacas are considerably smaller than llamas, and unlike them are not used as beasts of burden but are valued only for their fiber. Alpacas only have fleece fibers, not woolen fibers, used for making knitted and woven items much as sheeps wool is. These items include blankets, sweaters, hats, gloves, scarves, a wide variety of textiles and ponchos in South America, and sweaters, socks and coats in other parts of the world. The fiber comes in more than 52 natural colors as classified in Peru, 12 as classified in Australia and 22 as classified in America.  Alpacas and llamas differ in that llamas have banana shaped ears and long tails and alpacas have straight ears and stubby tails. Aside from these differences, llamas are on average 1-2 feet taller and proportionally bigger than alpacas.
In the textile industry, "alpaca" primarily refers to the hair of Peruvian alpaca, but more broadly it refers to a style of fabric originally made from alpaca hair but now often made from similar fibers, such as mohair, Icelandic sheep wool, or even high-quality
English wool.  In trade, distinctions are made between alpacas and the several styles of mohair and luster.
The Guanaco, similarly to llamas, alpacas and vicuñas, guanacos have thicker skin in their necks. Used for fighting in competition for mates, they have thickened to be more protective. Bolivians use the necks of these animals to make shoes, flattening and pounding the skin to be used for the soles. After this long process of condensation and compression, the skin becomes very hard. If it is not done properly it can absorb small amounts of water and be slippery to walk on. The young guanacos are named chulengo(s) throughout South America.
It is a camelid animal native to South America that stands approximately 1.06 m (3 ft 6 in) at the shoulder and weighs about 90 kg (200 lb). Like the llama, the guanaco is double coated with a coarse guard hair and soft undercoat, which is almost as fine as that of the alpaca, although they carry far less of it. The guanaco's soft wool is second only to that of the vicuña, a close relative. The colour varies very little, ranging from a light brown to dark cinnamon and shading to white underneath. Guanacos have grey faces and small straight ears. They are extremely striking with their large, alert brown eyes, streamlined form, and energetic pace. They are particularly ideal for keeping in large groups in open parklands.
The vicuña is one of 2 wild South American camelids, along with the guanaco, which live in the high alpineous areas of the Andes. It is a relative of the llama and the alpaca. Vicuñas produce small amounts of extremely fine wool, which is very expensive because the animal can only be shorn every 3 years. When knitted together, the product of the vicuña's fur is very soft and warm. It is understood that the Inca raised vicuñas for their wool, and that it was against the law for any but royalty to wear vicuña garments.
Both under the rule of the Inca and today, vicuñas have been protected by law. Before being declared endangered in 1974, only about 6,000 animals were left. Today, the vicuña have recovered to about 125,000 but organizations such as the IUCN and the U.S. Department of the Interior still consider it endangered.
The vicuña is considered more delicate and graceful than the guanaco, and smaller. Although their coats may look thin, they are made up of insulating hairs that are softer and warmer than any other animal. Its long, woolly coat is tawny brown on the back while the hair on the throat and chest is white and quite long. The head is slightly shorter than the guanaco's and the ears are slightly longer. The length of head and body ranges from 1.45 to 1.60 m (about 5 ft); shoulder height from 75 to 85 cm (around 3 ft); weight from 35 to 65 kg (under 150 lb).
In order to prevent poaching there is a round up every year, and all vicuñas with fur longer than 2-1/2 centimeters are shorn.
Vicuñas live exclusively in South America, primarily in the central Andes. They are most commonly found in Bolivia, Peru, Chile, and northwest Argentina. Peru has the largest number. Bolivia has great number of wild vicuñas in the Southwestern side of the country.
Vicuñas live in the grass lands and plains in the mountain regions at an altitude of 4,000 to 5,500 meters. There are many places they live but one usual place that you can find them in is the Andes Mountain in the grassy plains. In these areas, only nutrient poor tough bunch grasses and festuca grows. The sun's rays are able to penetrate the thin atmosphere producing relatively warm temperatures in the day; however, the temperatures go back to freezing at night. The vicuña's thick but soft coat is a special adaptation which traps layers of warm air close to its body so it can tolerate the freezing temperatures.
The fiber is popular due to its warmth. Its warming properties come from the tiny scales that are on the hollow air filled fibers. It causes them to interlock and trap insulating air. At the same time, it is finer than any other wool in the world but since it is sensitive to chemical treatment, the wool is usually left in its natural color.
However, the vicuña will only produce about one pound of wool a year and gathering it required a certain process during the time of the Incas. Vicuña fibers were annually gathered through communal efforts called chacu. Here, hundreds of thousands of people would herd hundreds of thousands of vicuña into previously laid funnel traps. The animals would be sheared and then released and was only done every four years. The vicuña was believed to be the reincarnation of a beautiful young maiden who received a coat of pure gold once she consented to the advances of an old, ugly king. Because of this, it was against the law for anyone to kill a vicuña or wear its fleece, except for Inca royalty.
From the period of Spanish Conquest to 1974, there was unrestricted hunting of the vicuña and reducing its numbers to only 6,000 in the 1960s. As a result, the species was declared endangered in 1974 and its status prohibited the trade of vicuña fiber. In Andean Bolivia the Ulla Ulla National Reserve was founded in 1977 partly as a sanctuary for the species. Their numbers grew to 125,000 in Peru, Chile, Argentina, and Bolivia. Since this was a ready “cash crop” for community members, the countries relaxed regulations on vicuña fiber in 1993 enabling its trade once again. Although the recovery is somewhat comforting, these animals are still classified as vulnerable by the IUCN and endangered by the U.S. Department of the Interior.
At present, the Peruvian government has a labeling system that identifies all garments that have been created through a government sanctioned chacu. This guarantees that the animal was captured, sheared alive, returned to the wild, and cannot be sheared again for another two years. The program also ensures that a large portion of the profits return to the villagers. However, annually up to 50,000 pounds of vicuña wool are exported as a result of illegal activities. Because of this, some countries have banned the importation of the fiber in order to save the animal. And although it is possible to commercially produce wool from domesticated vicuñas, it is difficult because they tend to escape.
Current prices for vicuña yarns and fabrics can range from $1,800 to $3,000 per yard. Vicuña fiber can be used for apparel (such as socks, sweaters, accessories, shawls, coats, and suits) and home fashion (such as blankets and throws).