Already sick of winter? Head south and get a jump on summer in Peru, home to one of the new Seven Wonders of the World.
Skip the capital of Lima and head straight to magnificent Cusco, the gateway city for all travelers headed to Machu Picchu. We found adjusting to the altitude (the city sits at 11,000 feet) was made easier by a visit to jewellery store Ilaria, especially when we scored some oh so-delicate handmade star and moon drop earrings for $28.
Once youve had a chance to acclimate, head to the bijou Baco. Get to know your South American wines with a flight of three for 20 soles (about $8), then dig into an alpaca steak with wasabi butter, oven roasted olives and sweet oca mash. Ruinas 465, Cusco, www.cicciolinacuzco.com/baco.htm
If youre not traversing the Andes via the Inca Trail to get to Machu Picchu, your best (and most panoramic) option is Peru Rail and its vistadome rail car. Departing daily from Cusco, the three-and-a-half-hour train ride takes you through the Sacred Valley and along the white rapids of the Urubamba River, while your car attendants offer up complimentary coffee, snacks and yes, a fashion show.
Sol y Luna Hotel
If youre not in a hurry, hop off the train in the town of Urubamba and head straight for the Sol y Luna hotel. This Belgian-owned spa resort has its own ranch, yoga instructors, tennis courts, and one of the most to-die-for salt scrubs weve ever experienced. Sacred Valley indeed!