Peru is as complex as its most intricate and exquisite weavings and is the molten core of South America. Visitors pilgrimage to the glorious Inca citadel of Machu Picchu, yet this feted site is just a flash in a 5,000-year history of peoples. Visit the Sacred Valley, tucked under the tawny skirts of formidable foothills and fly over the puzzling geoglyphs etched into the arid earth at Nazca. Lima’s great museums reveal in full detail the sophistication, skill and passion of these lost civilizations. Visit remote communities and see how old ways live on. Immerse yourself, and you will leave Peru a little closer to the past.

Along with providing a look into the past, Peru is also the perfect place to engage in various multi-sport activities. Some of the activities that are offered include world-class hiking, biking, rafting, and horseback riding. All of these activities take you to beautiful mountain settings, where you can interact with local Andean villagers and explore historic, “off-the-beaten-path” ruins.

Peru

Tours, Treks & Experiences

authentic lima

Full-Day Authentic Lima Experience

1-Day Tour: The Lima tour that shows travelers a Lima off-the-beaten-path and brings them to sights beyond Miraflores and the cathedral in the historic center that are usually not visited by tourists. This tour offers a great opportunity to see a different side of Lima, where the actual Limeños live and work. You will learn interesting historical and cultural facts but most importantly you will experience how Lima’s diverse inhabitants live their daily lives.
per person
Lima Food Tour

Lima Food Tour

1-Day Tour: Lima has been declared the World’s Leading Culinary Destination for the past six years. Without a doubt, Lima’s cuisine has earned it an excellent and well-deserved position.  A food tour is a perfect way to spend an afternoon or an evening exploring restaurants and the local market. Have fun with a pisco tasting, hands-on cocktail and cebiche class with a professional chef, and end the day with a gourmet meal.
5.00 / 1 review
per person
salkantay trek

5-Day Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu

4 nights/ 5 days - The Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu is an alternative to the Inca Trail and considered by most to be the best alternative route (and maybe even better!). It was named among the 25 Best Treks in the World by National Geographic.
per person
Sunset Over Cusco

Exploring Peru

13 nights/ 14 days Visit South America and travel to Peru. View the Nazca lines from an airplane. Visit Lima, Cuzco and Lake Titicaca. Tour the Sacred Valley and take the train to ancient Machu Picchu.
per person
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Peru

Peru Travel Information

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Over the last few years, the Peruvian weather has been rather unsettled possibly as a result of global warming. Despite the recent discrepancies, the winter in Peru, which ranges from May to December, is still considered to be the driest season and therefore the best time of year to travel, especially if you are planning to visit the Cusco area or trek the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. The summer, which starts in December and ends in March, is the wettest season and is characterized by frequent heavy showers.

Peru or Piru, meaning “land of abundance” in the region’s native Quechua tongue, has both a long and rich history that was influenced by both indigenous and European, specifically Spanish, ways of life.

Peruvians maintain a very strong sense of national identity supported by a series of common characteristics such as language, religion, food, and music. Spanish and Catholicism have historically provided a zealous sense of national belonging and cultural identity. These national characteristics have also enabled a national ethos to withstand the regional and ethnic differences inherent in the Peruvian population. Indians above all have faced five centuries of ethnically discriminatory and genocidal practices against its population. Even after independence their general treatment was not radically different. Indians are still portrayed as backwards and inferior and perform the hardest and less remunerative forms of labor. The more than sixty Amazon Indian groups still face cultural extinction as a result of oil exploration, agricultural production, and mining colonizing campaigns.

In Peru, the basic diet focuses around chicken, beef or seafood, mostly with french fries or rice (or both) and possibly a little salad. Soups are also common and good value. Coastal dishes are seafood based and include ceviche, which is fish marinated in lemon juice, onion and hot peppers traditionally served with corn on the cob, cancha (toasted corn), yucca and sweet potatoes. Escabeche is fish with onions, green and red peppers, prawns, cumin, hard boiled egg, olives and sprinkled with cheese. The most common fish is corvine (sea bass) which is served either grilled or fried and comes with a choice of sauces. Chupe de Camerones, a prawn stew, is another delicious dish certainly worth trying.

Corn and potatoes are Peru’s main vegetables – particularly in the highlands. “Causa” is a dish made from yellow potatoes, lemons, peppers, hard-boiled eggs, olives, lettuce, sweet corn, sweet potato, cheese and onion sauce. “Choclo con queso” is a large corn on the cob snack with very salty cheese. Other local favorites include “tomales” which is like a boiled corn dumpling filled with chicken and wrapped in a banana leaf as well as “lomo saltado” which is a kind of stir-fried beef with tomatoes, onions, and fried potatoes on a bed of rice.

If you are a strict vegetarian, you may experience a distinct lack of variety in the food available, however vegetarian alternatives are becoming more popular. Our guides will do thier best to provide interesting vegetarian alternatives for included meals.

Inti Raymi

Inti Raymi, which when translated from Quechua means “Fiesta del Sol” (Sun Festival) is one of the most important festivals of the imperial city of Cusco. This marvelous spectacle which takes place on the Sacsayhuaman esplanade is celebrated every June 24th and is meant to pay homage to the Sun god, a supreme symbol of worship in Inca culture. Currently close to 750 actors participate, who portray their ancestors with the same fervor as the previous century.

Danza de tijeras” (Scissors dance)

A colorful and risky sequence of jumps and dancing to the rhythm of a pair of scissors. Originally from Ayacucho it has been recognised by UNESCO as an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

Payments offered to the Earth

The ceremony known as “payment to the earth”, frequently enacted in the Peruvian Andes, began on the first day of August and continued all through that month. The peasants believed that during this time Pachamama was hungry and thirsty, and it was necessary to satisfy her, feed her and offer her the best food to give her strength and energy.

Weavers of Taquile island

Lake Titicaca is one of the most important natural heritage sites in the world, as well as a great source of resources for the communities that live around its blue waters, maintaining ancestral traditions and customs. The island has pre-Inca terraces and ceremonial sites. Its inhabitants are experts in the art of traditional textiles, which has been recognized by UNESCO since 2005 as an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

Peru is unique in its wide variety of ecosystems ranging from the driest/ hottest desert in the Americas, to the high Andean peaks (over 25,000 feet above sea level); and a two-thousand kilometer long belt of cloud forest, rich in flora and fauna, to a vast area of lowland Amazon jungle, covering more than half the country. The three main zones of Peru are known as La Costa (the coast), La Sierra (the mountains), and La Selva (the jungle).

Over the last few years, the Peruvian weather has been rather unsettled possibly as a result of global warming. However, it still rarely rains on the coast, although the Lima region does experience substantial smog, coastal fogs or mists and even drizzle; particularly between the months of May and November.

The climate in the Sierra and Selva regions can be divided into a wet season (November-April) and a dry season (May-October). There is, of course, some rain during the dry season, but it is much heavier and much more frequent in the wet season.

At the moment of conquest, Peru’s original indigenous population numbered around 12 million. Only in the last forty years of the twentieth century was Peru once again able to reach that initial number, since the indigenous population had been almost completely decimated. Currently, there are four major ethnic groups in Peru. The first of these being “whites” of European ancestry. Followed by mestizos (of mixed European and India ancestry), Indians (of native ancestry), and Afro-Peruvians (of African descent). The Indian population is the largest and comprises close to half of Peru’s overall population.

Spanish and Quechua are both recognized as official languages in Peru. Spanish, however, is the enforced by both languages the education system and the government. Although not enforced, Quechua is spoken by most of Peru’s Indian population.  Originally spoken by the Incas, Quechua was imposed upon all the populations conquered by them, allowing the Incas an easier medium for communication and domination. After the Spanish conquest, Quechua gained recognition as the indigenous lingua franca and also took on a characteristic of resistance rather than domination. There are also several other dozen languages spoken by other indigenous groups, most of which live in Peru’s Amazon basin. The rich African influence also has contributed to a culturally and stylistically distinct variation of Peruvian Spanish.

We recommend that you check your government’s advice for the latest travel information before departure. Our guides will accompany us on all included activities. During our trip, you will have some free time to pursue your own interests. While our guides will assist with options available in a given location, please note that any optional activities you undertake that are not part of the itinerary, are at your own risk. We offer no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them.

While most of the cities we will visit are generally safe, there can be risks when wandering through a major city at night and it is our recommendation that you stay in small groups and take taxis to and from restaurants or other night me excursions. We also advise staying away from any protests and demonstrations. Even those that are well in-tended have the potential to turn violent with no warning.

Adventure activities and water-based activities have an element of danger and excitement built into them. We recommend only participating in activities when accompanied by guide(s). We make every reasonable effort to ensure the fun and adventurous element of any of our planned activities, and we take all prudent measures in relation to your safety, but please use your own good judgement. Participating in adventurous activities is always at your own risk.

Haggling is expected in Peru and hunting for bargains can be a real highlight. For up-market, designer goods visit the coastal suburb of Miraflores in Lima. Here prices are usually fixed unless you are buying from a street vendor. There are also some good quality handicraft shops but the prices do tend to be a little higher, although you may sometimes be able to bargain. Another good area to look for handicrafts is La Feria Artisanal in La Marina. This is the biggest craft market in Lima and bargaining is certainly expected.

You’ll find good handicraft markets in all of the touristy towns, but beware of pickpockets. Your best buys are wall-hangings (tapestries), hand-woven textiles, alpaca and llama woollen products, hats, blankets, furry slippers, coats, ceramics, papier-mâché ornaments, and gold and silver objects and jewelry.

Current Weather in Lima

Current Weather in Cuzco

Current Weather in Puno

Things to See and Do in Peru

Peru

Visit Machu Picchu

No matter how you get there, nothing will prepare you for the jaw-dropping beauty of Machu Picchu. You could hike the Inca Trail or one of the other many trails that leads to the ancient citadel. If you’re not up for hiking for several days, you can also take the train. When you arrive, time will slip away as you try to uncover the secrets these ancient ruins behold and marvel at how such grandeur is possible in a place so remote.

Skylodge

Spend a Night in the Skylodge

Located in the Sacred Valley of Cuzco, Peru, the exclusive Skylodge Adventure Suites offers you the chance to sleep within a completely transparent hanging bedroom, that allows you to appreciate the impressive views of this magic and mystical valley. To sleep at the lodge, one must climb 400 feet of Via Ferrata or hike an intrepid trail and then return via zipline.

cusco

Discover Cuzco

With Machu Picchu just over the hill, most travelers don’t spend much time in the city since it’s not the main attraction. However, Cuzco (also spelled Cusco) is where history comes to life! This stunning colonial city is full of reminders of its Inca past. Ruins are everywhere, and even the elegant colonial buildings have been built upon old Inca temples, houses, and markets. A Boleto Turistico del Cusco pass gives you access to 16 key historic sites. Then head out to Sacsayhuaman, overlooking the city, and walk down through the San Blas neighborhood, the artisan quarter, with its galleries and boutiques.

nazca flight

Take a Flight Over the Nazca Lines

The Nazca Lines are a series of large ancient geoglyphs in the Nazca Desert, in southern Peru. The largest figures are up to 370m/ 1,200ft long. They were designated as a UNSECO World Heritage Site in 1994. Created by the ancient Nazca culture in South America, and depicting various plants, animals, and shapes, the 2,000-year-old Nazca Lines can only be fully appreciated when viewed from the air given their massive size. Despite being studied for over 80 years, the geoglyphs are still a mystery to researchers.

Amazon

Explore the Amazon Jungle

Peru is where the Amazon begins, in Carhuasanta, before winding its way down the Andes and into the Amazon basin on the other side. Peru is the only South American country where you can experience its different forms. The Peruvian Amazon is possibly the most diverse and prolific section of all. Witness caimans and anacondas as you paddle canoes along tranquil waterways, lulled by the all-encompassing symphony of green.

kayak lake titicaca

Kayak Lake Titicaca

Lake Titicaca is one of the truly iconic destinations of South America and a kayaking adventure here is an absolute must! Lake Titicaca is a large, deep lake in the Andes on the border of Bolivia and Peru. By volume of water and by surface area, it is the largest lake in South America. In Andean belief, Titicaca is the birthplace of the sun.  Lake Titicaca’s islands are world famous for their peaceful beauty and the living tradition of their agrarian cultures, which date to pre-Columbian times. A homestay here offers a privileged glimpse of another way of life.

Pisco sour class

Take a Food Tour and Pisco Sour Class in Lima

Lima has been declared the World’s Leading Culinary Destination for the past six years. Without a doubt, Lima’s cuisine has earned it an excellent and well-deserved position.  A food tour is a perfect way to spend an afternoon or an evening exploring restaurants and the local market. Have fun with a pisco tasting, hands-on cocktail and cebiche class with a professional chef, and end the day with a gourmet meal.

Book Your Lima Food Tour here >> https://adventurepeople.net/tours/lima-food-tour/

Colca Canyon

Trekking in Colca Canyon

The Colca Canyon is a famously deep river canyon and is a habitat for giant Andean condors. The canyon landscape comprises a green valley and remote traditional villages with terraced agriculture the predates the Incas. There are only a few modest archaeological sites in the Colca Canyon, but the place makes up for it with extreme topography and vast landscapes that blow the Sacred Valley out of the water.

Responsible Travel

Our philosophy of travel is one of respect towards the local people we encounter, their culture, local economies and the environment. It’s important to remember that what may be acceptable behavior, dress, and language in your own country, may not be appropriate in another. Please keep this in mind while traveling.

Top responsible travel tips for Peru

  1. Be considerate of Peru’s customs, traditions, religion, and culture.
  2. For environmental reasons, try to avoid buying bottled water. Fill a reusable water bottle or canteen with filtered water.
  3. Always dispose of litter thoughtfully, including cigarette butts.
  4. Learn some local language and don’t be afraid to use it – simple greetings will help break the ice.
  5. Shop for locally made products. Supporting local artisans helps keep traditional crafts alive.
  6. Refrain from supporting businesses that exploit or abuse endangered animals.
  7. Please ask and receive permission before taking photos of people, including children.

FAQ's

It is customary in Latin America to tip service providers such as waiters, tour guides, bus drivers, taxi drivers, and musicians. Feel good about tipping. There is almost always free entertainment in bars and restaurants; the musicians and singers are usually not paid by the venue so we encourage you to tip when you have enjoyed the performance or background rhythms. Tipping is an expected — though not compulsory — component of your trip and an expression of satisfaction with the persons who have assisted you, but be sure to tip using the Peruvian sol as foreign currency isn’t easily exchanged in Peru.

Internet access isn’t widespread throughout Cuba but availability is increasing. The internet can sometimes be accessed from larger hotels, and most recently the main square of most cities now have WiFi accessibility. You will need to purchase an internet card from certain hotels and outlets to sign on to the internet in any location. Please note that the connection may be slow, some websites may be censored and the cost is typically high.

Your mobile phone may or may not work while in Peru, depending on what type of phone you have. Before leaving your home country, ensure global roaming is activated with your provider, but be aware that your phone may not get reception.

Public toilets are available in hotels, bars and restaurants. However, depending on the establishment, there may or may not be soap and water to wash your hands so invest in for hand sanitizer. Its also a good idea to bring your own toilet paper as it is scarce and rarely up for purchase. Speaking of toilet paper, Peruvian plumbing and septic system is not equipped to process and deal with paper waste. Thus, you must dispose of all toilet paper, sanitary items, and diapers in the allotted trash can located next to the toilet.

Can of soft drink = 2.40 S
Cup of coffee = 7.37 S
Cocktail = 6-9 S
Meal (for 2) in a nice restaurant = 62.82 S

1 U.S. Dollar equals 3.28 Sol

Tap water in Peru is not safe to drink. For environmental reasons, try to avoid buying bottled water. Fill a reusable water bottle or canteen with filtered water. Boiling water vigorously for one minute is the most effective means of water purification. At altitudes over 2000m (6500ft), boil for three minutes. You can also disinfect water with iodine or water-purification pills or use a water filter or Steripen.

It’s also advisable to avoid ice in drinks and peel fruit and vegetables before eating.

In Peru, the local currency is the Nuevo Sol (PEN). As currency exchange rates do fluctuate, we ask that you refer to the following website for the most up to date daily exchange rates, www.oanda.com or www.xe.com. Credit cards and debit cards are very useful for cash advances. Visa cards are the most widely accepted cards. While ATM’s are widely available, there are no guarantees that your credit or debit cards will actually work in Latin America, so you should check with your bank. Also, a fee of 5%-10% usually applies to purchase products or services on a credit card.

Do not rely on credit or debit cards as your only source of money, a combination of cash and cards is best. Always take more rather than less, as you don’t want to spoil the trip by constantly feeling short of funds. We do not recommend bringing travelers cheques as they are very difficult to exchange in Peru.

*Please be advised that slightly torn notes, notes that have been heavily marked or are faded may be difficult to exchange. It is best to bring notes in fairly good condition, in dominations lower than 100USD (or equivalent).

Travel insurance is mandatory to participate on any of our trips—not just by us, but by many of the tour operators we work with. You will not be permitted to join a trip unless evidence of travel insurance has been presented. The minimum requirement must provide coverage of $200,000 USD for medical expenses including repatriation and emergency rescue. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. Some credit card companies offer travel insurance, but proof of coverage will be required. Contact your provider for details.

All countries require a valid passport (with a minumum 6 months validity). Contact your local embassy, or consulate for the most up-to-date visa requirements. It’s your responsibility to have the correct travel documentation.