Huayllay Stone Forest, Peru
At first glance, the Huallay Stone Forest looks man-made, like Stonehenge’s Peruvian cousin. Yet these strange formations came about naturally, the result of thousands of years of natural erosion. Wind, water, and ancient glaciers all contributed to this one-of-a-kind landscape.
Locals refer to it as the “bosque de piedras” – a forest of stone. Travel to the Paso region to hike through (or climb over) these natural formations. This stone forest covers 16,840 acres (6,815 ha) of land.
Although sturdy, some of the stones have a precarious appearance – giant rocks have had their bases whittles into small columns. Other stones take the shape of an arch. These large, unusually-shaped rocks are a popular destination for rock climbers. It is challenging terrain, and climbers need to adjust to the altitude before attempting to scale the rocks.