August 28, 2007 (Minneapolis, MN) â€“ As citizens slowly pick up the pieces after being hit by a 7.9 earthquake on August 15, 2007, Peruvian officials and local authorities are hard at work regaining access to roads, clearing rubble from the affected areas and assisting the many citizens who remain homeless. While work is underway to help those most affected by the earthquake, tourism officials are hard at work ensuring that the tourist network is up and running again and smooth transitions to the impacted regions are being handled. As tourism is Peruâ€™s third largest foreign exchange earner, tourism officials are taking major steps to insure no tourists are impacted by the affects of the earthquake.
Fortunately for Peruâ€™s tourism infrastructure, the tragedy struck in an area which is not considered a hub for Peruâ€™s tourism, however hotels between Chincha and Pisco were heavily damaged. The good news is that hotels in the bigger cities of Ica and Nasca were less affected and hotels in the major tourist centers were not affected. All have running water, electricity and backup generators. Already today, Ica is hosting 300 participants at the Hotel Las Dunas for the International Symposium of the Table Grape with no changes to the event schedule.
Tourists affected by the quake were immediately evacuated or rerouted to other destinations within Peru. Although the region is close to the Nasca Lines, the lines have not been affected at all. One major concern after the quake was the state of the road joining Lima and the southern coast, The Carretera Panamericana Sur. It has been confirmed the road is cleared and transit is running as it was prior to the tremor. All air service continues as normal and on schedule.
Tourism and Exports Minister, Mercedes Araoz, stated that the areas and citizens most heavily affected by the earthquake – Ica, Pisco and Chincha – will benefit greatly by the commitment put forth by local and foreign investors looking to rebuild the area. Additionally, Araoz is asking potential tourists to consider visiting the affected region so that tourism dollars can help aid those trying to rebuild their lives, homes and businesses.
Peru is deeply saddened for the loss of life, loss of homes and for the citizens affected by this earthquake and wishes to thank the many people around the world who have shown their solidarity to our country during this challenging time.
For more information on tourism to Peru please contact Peruâ€™s tourism Information Center â€“ IperÃº, of PromPerÃº at 011-511-574-8000 or via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org. The service center is open 24 hours, seven days a week. If you are traveling from the U.S., please check the US State Department website for up-to-date travel information to Peru: http://travel.state.gov.