Thousands of years ago, nomads traveled throughout the area that is now Peru. Eventually, they settled into villages and began to farm and herd animals. Over the next centuries, many advanced cultures grew in the area, including the famous Inca Empire. Today, descendents of the Incas still live and farm in the mountains. Like their ancestors, they rely on animals like llamas for food, clothing, and carrying goods.

Population: 28 million
Size: 501,234 square miles (a little smaller than Alaska)
Capital and largest city: Lima
Geography: tropical jungle, mountains, desert
Government: Democracy
Primary language: Spanish
Natural hazards: earthquakes, tsunamis, flooding, landslides

Image credits: main image, courtesy of AMNH.