Oh, Peru—a country that tops travellers’ bucket lists for many more reasons than Machu Picchu. When you travel to Peru, you’ll unearth many unexpected facets. From thriving indigenous cultures to epic adventure opportunities, your journey to this South American country will be filled with wonder. To help you navigate, we’ve compiled this extensive travel guide to Peru.

Table of contents

About Peru

Peru stands out for its cultural diversity, fascinating history, climate zones, and majestic species. The country’s history includes the Incan empire, one of the most well-known ancient civilizations, attracting many visitors and history buffs. Not only will you receive a complete history lesson when visiting Peru, but you’ll also stumble into an adventure playground with the beach, the Amazon, and snow-capped mountains to explore. On top of that, megadiverse wildlife roams the country, including pink dolphins in the Amazon, condors flying above, and alpacas everywhere.

After being under Spanish colonial control since the 16th century, Peru gained independence on July 28, 1821. Since independence, Peru has been ruled as a unitary multiparty republic with one legislative house, also known as a presidential republic. In fact, the country’s official name is República del Perú. The population of 31.92 million (2020) lives among a landmass spanning 1.285 million km2, making for some densely populated areas like the capital, Lima. Visiting Peru brings you into its rich tapestry of history and culture, much of which can be seen in indigenous traditions today.

Best Places to Visit in Peru

Peru is any traveller’s dream! The following list could have included almost every city, town, or village in this beautiful country. Here are a few of the best places to visit when you tour Peru.

Huacachina

Any trip to Peru should include a few days in Huacachina, a tiny town built around an oasis on the edge of the Atacama Desert in southwestern Peru. Surrounded by enormous sand dunes (even the world’s largest dune!), a stop here will most likely include sandboarding, exploring on a dune buggy, and watching epic sunsets. The oasis itself isn’t safe for swimming, but you can take plenty of lovely walks around the pond.

Máncora

You wouldn’t necessarily consider Peru a beach destination, but for a break from the jungles and mountains, it has a little pocket of sand and sunshine named Máncora. If you have your heart set on a vacation that includes a chilled-out few days by the beach after your Peruvian adventures, be sure to plan a few days in Máncora. This tiny beach town in northern Peru will entertain you day and night with sun, surf, and so many pisco sours. It’s colourful, lively, and muy tranquilo (if you avoid the party hostels).

Rainbow Mountain

You’ve probably seen images of this striated mountain on many Instagram feeds—it is undeniably photogenic. To reach the colourful mountain, you’ll have to take an organized tour from Cusco, unless you’ve rented a car. Trying to get here independently may be more hassle than it’s worth. Check out this adventure tour that hits the Peruvian highlights of Ausangate, Rainbow Mountain, and Machu Picchu.

Iquitos (Amazon)

All roads don’t lead to Iquitos! This stunning isolated town sits adjacent to the Amazon River, only accessible by boat. It’s a gateway to activities in this area and your chance to see some unique Amazonian species you won’t find elsewhere (pink dolphin, anyone?!). While in town, you can explore the floating markets and even find gourmet meals, stay in eco-lodges or a treehouse, or go on a river cruise.

Puno and Lake Titicaca

Known as the world’s highest navigable lake, Lake Titicaca straddles the border of Peru and Bolivia and draws visitors for its undeniable mysticism. The Incas believed that Lake Titicaca was the birthplace of the sun, a pertinent part of their belief system—so you can imagine the power this area holds. You can take a boat tour of the islands within the lake to explore some ancient Incan ruins.

Lamas Alpacca Macchu Pichu
Lamas Alpacca Macchu Pichu

Lima

A trip to Peru would be incomplete without a visit to its bustling capital, Lima. Within the city, you’ll have a sensational feast of culture, gastronomy, and never-ending nightlife. Wander the distinct neighbourhoods, like the chic Miraflores, where the residents enjoy spectacular views of the Pacific Ocean. Or stroll into Barranco to sip coffee and admire the ubiquitous street art, relishing in the bohemian and quirky vibes. The city’s historical centre comprises many narrow streets and restored colonial architecture—a wonderful place to get lost on purpose.

Colca Canyon

You probably haven’t heard of Colca Canyon unless you’ve done a bit of research on Peru. This impressive canyon is one of the deepest in the world, reaching a depth of 3270m. To explore Colca Canyon, you can either find a guide or hike the route on your own—the path is well-marked (and you’ll likely be able to follow tour groups heading in the same direction if you get lost). A few hostels line the bottom of the canyon for a comfortable night’s sleep during your journey. It takes at least two days, and it’s a good idea to include a rest day because the ascent is relentless and shade is scarce.

Machu Picchu

Not much needs to be said about this famous attraction—it’s the biggest draw for tourism in Peru. Perched high in the Eastern Cordillera, this 15th-century Incan site and surrounding area offer plentiful adventures. You can customize the journey to suit your travel preferences—spend some extra time and hike the Inca Trail or relax in the high-altitude town of Aguas Calientes.

Cusco

Before heading to Machu Picchu, you’ll likely spend time in Cusco, the captivating centre of the former Incan empire. Most travellers fall in love with the city after a few days for its central cathedral, adorable cafes, lively marketplaces, and much more. Take a walking tour around Cusco to see the highlights at your own pace—but be warned that it’s not flat, so bring water and a hat!

Cordillera Blanca

If you’re heading to Peru for trekking, you absolutely cannot skip the Cordillera Blanca in central Peru. This epic mountain range houses Peru’s highest peak, Mount Huascarán, reaching 6768m. Explore on your own, or join a tour like the Alpamayo to Pomabamba Trek and let your guide lead the way. Or, to customize your trip, you can plan your own day hikes and adventures around Huaraz, the central hub near the mountains.

Best Things to Do in Peru

Peru will satisfy all of your senses, and if you’re after adventure, it will get your heart pumping, too. From city walks to sandboarding, you’ll find incredible things to do. Take your pick of the following activities.

Rainbow mountain
Rainbow mountain

Hiking and Backpacking

With mountain ranges running through most of the country, it’s no wonder that Peru is a popular hiking and backpacking destination. You can visit the well-known Machu Picchu or hike the incredible Inca Trail through the Sacred Valley while in Peru. Apart from the famous Incan archaeological site, magnificent mountain ranges like the Cordillera Blanca and the Andes comprise much of Peru’s landmass—hikers, rejoice! Northern Peru has endless trekking opportunities. You can also climb into one of the deepest canyons in the world, Colca Canyon.

Surfing

Peru sure has a ton of awesome surf spots for a country not thought of for its beaches. Beginners and experts alike can catch a suitable wave down the Pacific coastline. Check out places like Máncora, Cabo Blanco (advanced only), and Lobitos in northern Peru, where temperatures are a bit warmer. The northern swell is best from October to April. You’ll find much colder temperatures in southern Peru but decent waves from April to October in spots like Playa Waikiki in Lima and Punta Hermosa south of the capital. So when you need a break from the mountains (if that ever happens), rent a surfboard and catch a wave!

Sandboarding

With a vast desert encroaching on Peru’s southern region, it’s no surprise the adrenaline junkies found an exhilarating way to pass the time here. Enter: sandboarding. In Huacachina, you can rent a board and surf the sand either on your feet (like snowboarding) or riding down on your stomach, face first. It sounds dangerous, but this is the method recommended for beginners.

Mountain Biking and Cycling

Want to explore with a little more speed than your hiking boots will allow? You’re in luck. Mountain biking has boomed in Peru, with several tours on offer all over the country. For adrenaline-pumping rides, check out the Cordillera Blanca around Huaraz or find out about riding into the Colca Canyon. Also, some tours to Machu Picchu include a stretch of downhill biking around the Sacred Valley. If you prefer to explore leisurely on a bike, rent one in Lima and cruise around the coastal neighbourhoods, or visit Pachacamac archaeological site to pedal past mighty rivers and ruins.

Great Adventure Trips in Peru

As you may have gathered by now, adventure opportunities abound in Peru, but the most popular are trekking tours. It’s a dream to escape and hike into those magical mountain ranges of the Cordillera Blanca and the Andes. And, of course, the lush Amazon jungle.

Peru for Active Travelers

For total immersion into authentic Peru, this 20-day multi-sport adventure gives you what you need. Follow your expert local guide to famous sites like Machu Picchu, Lake Titicaca, the Nazca desert, and Colca Canyon. You’ll hike, mountain bike, and kayak across unbelievable landscapes, while experiencing Peruvian hospitality along the way in wonderful hotels.

Humantay Lake Cusco
Humantay Lake Cusco

Mountain Biking Adventure in the Sacred Valley

Want a little more adrenaline than a hiking tour? This 9-day mountain biking excursion through the Sacred Valley will be unforgettable. You’ll get to explore Incan ruins as you cruise down gnarly single track trails. Bike to the salt pans and the epic Mega-Avalanche course, which drops 1600m in 20.0km. Talk about an adventure!

Multi-Sport Family Adventure Tour

Make some sweet family memories on this Peruvian adventure tour—experience a new activity each day, including e-biking, rafting, and hiking in Machu Picchu. Your kids will be entertained and will inevitably learn a lot about Peruvian culture during this week-long tour. Give them a journey they’ll never forget.

Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu

An incredible getaway in the majestic Andes, the Salkantay trek leads you to Machu Picchu on ancient paths. You’ll spend part of the tour trekking through the Andes, hiking through a cloud forest, and finding hidden natural hot springs to relax in. When you leave the wilderness behind, you’ll enjoy a few nights in a luxury hotel and spend your days getting a cultural fix in the famous Cusco. This 8-day tour is a perfect blend of adventure and indulgence.

Santa Cruz Trek

Here’s one for the hardy adventurers! With a difficulty rating of 5/5, this 8-day experience will test your physicality and bring a sense of pride when you’re done. Arrive in Huaraz, then head out for an unparalleled 5-day trek through the Santa Cruz Valley. The altitude will challenge you, so take your time and catch your breath while overlooking the phenomenal peaks of the Cordillera Blanca.

Complete Huayhuash Circuit

Are you an experienced trekker? What better way to prove it than spending 14 days trekking the complete Huayhuash circuit in the Cordillera Blanca. Visit epic glaciers, icy-blue lakes, camp under the stars, and indulge in camp meals cooked up by your expert local guides. Escape to the Peruvian wilderness for a truly remote trekking experience.

Peru’s Outdoors

As a super diverse nation, Peru appeals to all types of travellers, from those looking for a challenging and remote trekking experience to some who want to view the range of wildlife. Exploring Peru’s outdoors is a spectacular journey.

Geography

A trip to Peru could include visiting the beach, trekking in the mountains, bushwhacking through the jungle, or getting lost in a desert. In short, its diverse geography makes it an ideal destination for adventure travel.

Ancient historic Machu Picchu
Ancient historic Machu Picchu

Wildlife

For travellers intrigued by diverse wildlife, Peru will not disappoint. The country is listed as a megadiverse country thanks to the numerous species living in the Andes, the Amazon, and the Pacific Ocean along Peru’s coastline. It’s home to around 5,000 species of fish and animals! While hiking in the Colca Canyon or the Sacred Valley, you may spot the native condors flying above with their enormous wingspan. In the rainforest, keep your eyes out for the anaconda, the largest snake in the world. And, of course, llamas and alpacas roam widely across agricultural lands—you’ll even meet some on Machu Picchu! If you’re leaving pets at home, you’ll have plenty of options for temporary replacements during your vacation.

Peru Travel Costs

Whether you want to travel on a shoestring or live frivolously while in Peru, you’ll be able to explore this country on a relatively modest budget. Depending on your travel style, you should aim for a daily budget between $20 and $175 per person. Check out the following break-down of where you’ll be spending money and figure out where you fit in the range. Keep in mind that the water is not safe to drink in Peru, so you will have to factor in bottled water costs. (Prices will vary throughout Peru, so we’ve listed the average costs. All prices are listed in Canadian Dollars.)

Accommodation

Cheap: $9/night
Mid-range: $26/night
Luxury: $89/night

Restaurant Meal

Cheap: $6
Mid-range: $12
Luxury: $24

Domestic beer: $2.50
Imported beer: $4.50
Glass of wine: $3.75

Food

Cheap: $6/day
Mid-range: $14/day
Luxury: $35/day

Daily Transportation

Cheap: $3/day
Mid-range: $8/day
Luxury: $20/day

Bus ticket (one-way): $0.58

Three toed sloth in the Amazon rainforest jungle see on birding expedition
Three toed sloth in the Amazon rainforest jungle see on birding expedition

Intercity Transportation

Cheap: $14
Mid-range: $39
Luxury: $123

Entertainment

Cheap: $7/day
Mid-range: $21/day
Luxury: $72/day

Alcohol

Cheap: $2.50/day
Mid-range: $6/day
Luxury: $15/day

Tips

Tipping isn’t a huge part of Peruvian culture, but the locals who work in the tourism industry will appreciate a monetary acknowledgement of your gratitude and may even rely on it. A relatively small amount can go a long way, especially for underpaid workers. But how much? First, it’s important to note that leaving local currency is preferred as it may be more of a hassle for locals to exchange foreign cash.

  • For restaurant service, a 10% tip is standard. At upscale restaurants, a 10% service charge will most likely be included on your bill. When this charge does not appear on your bill, tip at least 10%. In any case, feel free to leave extra if the service was excellent.
  • At a bar, 1 or 2 soles per drink is customary, or you can apply the 10% rule.
  • For porters at the airport, if you choose to accept their service (you don’t have to), 2 soles ($0.70) per bag is customary.
  • On guided tours, consider a reasonable tip for the time you’ve spent with your guide. Generally, start at 15–17 soles ($5–$6) for a half-day tour and add incrementally from there based on your experience. Multi-day trips are labour intensive for your guides, and they deserve at least 35–40 ($10–$15) soles per day. The company will pool this cash and divide it equally among the guides.
  • Taxis are another story: most will not have the meter running, so you should agree on a fare, inclusive of a tip, before driving off. If the driver helps you with your bags, however, add on a couple of extra soles.

Since Peru has a lower cost of living, it won’t be much out of your pocket to make a huge difference in someone’s life who offered you excellent service in their country. Show your respect for their efforts, and leave a tip! Be aware of unexpected tipping situations when someone approaches you, offering you some kind of service or directions. If you accept their offer, they will expect a tip. If you do not want to engage, politely decline their offer and walk away.

Peru Travel Safety

There’s a stigma attached to South America that needs busting: this continent is not riddled with drug gangs and murder. In fact, most of the people are welcoming, friendly, and want you to explore their countries safely. They’re curious about travellers and shouldn’t be viewed as unsafe. If you use common sense and follow some basic guidelines, you’ll have a perfectly safe trip to Peru.

Compared to some more developed nations, it’s true that petty crime in Peru is common, especially in popular tourist areas. However, if you stay aware and remain vigilant with your belongings (read: don’t flaunt your fancy jewellery or lose sight of your purse), you’ll avoid a costly pickpocket. To minimize worries on the road, look into an anti-theft pack like Metrosafe’s hip pack for added security.

No matter where you go, we recommend using the buddy system, especially in Peru. Being targeted or mugged is more likely to happen if you’re wandering alone. Stick with a buddy and avoid poorly-lit or deserted areas. Be aware that credit card and ATM scams can occur, so be protective of your withdrawals and who has your credit card information.

Speak to your local hosts in hotels and hostels and get the low-down on the safety in that area. They can inform you about the places to avoid and how to stay safe. In case something unfortunate happens, it’s best to have quality insurance coverage. We use World Nomads since they offer excellent coverage geared towards nomadic folks and travellers.

Sunset over Amazon rainforest and jungle birding expedition Peru
Sunset over Amazon rainforest and jungle birding expedition Peru

Best Time to Visit Peru

The best time to visit Peru depends greatly on the weather. Being so close to the equator, Peru has two seasons rather than four: wet and dry. Unsurprisingly, peak tourist season occurs during the driest months between May and October. That said, some areas draw tourists in December and January, and the advantages of travelling off-season are fewer crowds and lower prices—just don’t forget to pack your rain gear!

Dry Season – May to October

For trekking and other outdoor adventures, and if you’re opposed to torrential downpours (even though sometimes they only last a few hours), this is the season for you. On the coast, you’ll enjoy warm to hot temperatures and dry days. Whereas in the highlands, the temperature will drop significantly overnight—this is winter in the southern hemisphere, after all. If your trip includes a visit to the Amazon, be prepared for some sticky and steamy weather.

Wet Season – November to April

The rainy season draws fewer tourists and leaves some roads and treks impassable in the highlands. If you’re heading to Peru to hike, it’s best to go during the dry season. However, the Amazon and the coastal regions welcome travellers year-round. In the jungle, you’ll hit inevitable humidity and see a surge in river levels, and the coastal summer weather from December to April makes for a pretty pleasant experience.

Best Ways to Get Around Peru

You can travel domestically throughout Peru by a few different means of transportation, some more favorable than others, and here’s why.

The most popular method of getting around Peru is by bus. It’s preferable thanks to its comprehensive network, low fares, and relatively reliable service. Bus terminals act as a central hub in cities, and you’ll be able to choose your destination from a variety of vendors. Some routes offer seat choices, so if you feel like treating yourself, grab a luxury seat, receive snacks or a meal, and enjoy some questionably-dubbed action film for entertainment. In a regular seat, just download a bunch of your favourite podcasts and stare out the window as you ride across the country.

A transportation method that has been gaining popularity in the adventure tourism industry is bikepacking, where you pack all your belongings in panniers on two wheels and pedal yourself to each destination on your path. Parts of Peru have the infrastructure for this, and it’s an incredible way to experience a country. Due to the altitude in Peru, bikepacking is extremely challenging—but if you’re up for the challenge, check out some of these bikepacking routes in Peru.

If the Amazon is on your Peru bucket list, you’ll have to get acquainted with the local boat transportation. Some cities, like Iquitos, are only accessible by boat or small plane. Make sure you have your sea legs before heading into the jungle!

Other less popular transportation options include train and air travel or driving yourself around the country. Train travel in Peru is a novel idea, but perhaps not the best use of your time or money. Unless you’re splurging for a first-class ticket (offering sweeping vistas of Peruvian peaks), you will likely be uncomfortable and worried about your belongings for the entire ride. Similarly, domestic flights will save time, but they’ll also break the bank. Finally, you could rent a car, but this is only recommended if you speak Spanish fluently. If you are stopped anywhere, you may have to present papers and negotiate with officials, which will prove difficult if you don’t have a working knowledge of the local language.

Amazon river aerial meandering birding expedition Amazon Peru
Amazon river aerial meandering birding expedition Amazon Peru

Best Places to Stay in Peru

You won’t have a hard time choosing accommodation in Peru. If you’re coming from an expensive country, you’ll get great deals for luxury hotels. You’ll also find a wide variety of mid-range options and much cheaper hostels. Adventurers will also be happy to know that camping is widely accepted in many rural areas, and this option can be very cheap or free.

Useful Travel Tools

To help you navigate your way around Peru, we’ve listed some of our favourite travel tools. These useful sites bring you one step closer to your Peruvian adventure.

To Book Accommodation

Finding hotels and long-term accommodation doesn’t have to be a pain. We use these tools to find the best deals: booking.com, hotels.com, expedia.com, and agoda.com. For long-term rentals or more unique listings, check with vrbo.com for some cool accommodation finds. Budget-savvy travellers can search for hostels in their desired locations on Hostelling International.

To Book Flights

Peru has a few domestic airlines for easy transport through the country. You can also find great international flights to reach this awesome destination using sites like Skyscanner or CheapOair.

To Rent a Car

If you don’t speak the local language, renting a car may be more hassle than it’s worth in Peru. That said, if you’re travelling with total confidence in your Spanish-speaking skills, by all means, check rentalcars.com to compare providers and find the best deal on your rental in Peru.

Catching piranha Amazon
Catching piranha Amazon

To Get Gear

Undoubtedly, you’ll be doing some outdoor adventures in Peru, and you’ll want top-quality gear. You can buy items locally, but the quality cannot rival the classics like Arc’teryx, Patagonia, and Helly Hansen. If you plan on sticking to day hikes and maybe some trail running, check Salomon and the Running Room. Plan on camping or need some backpacking accessories? Browse the gear at MEC, REI or Backcountry.com.

Other Useful Travel Services

Do you need airport parking? Find the best options on Airport Parking Reservations by entering your home airport and departure dates.

Visa Requirements When Travelling to Peru

Tourists must have a valid passport with at least six months until its expiry and two empty passport pages to visit Peru. Visitors from certain countries will receive a stamp on arrival called a Tourist Visa (though, really, it’s a stamp), but visitors from some countries may need to apply for a visa before travelling to Peru. The tourist visa in Peru is valid for 183 days per year and cannot be extended. You may be granted a 90-day stamp, but you can extend this online if needed. It’s a single entry, which means you will not be able to exit and return on the same visa. Some airlines will require proof of onward travel; however, this is not required by the immigration authorities to enter Peru.

Travellers from Canada

With a valid passport with at least six months until expiry and two empty passport pages, travellers from Canada are eligible for a Tourist Visa on arrival, valid for 183 days. This stamp is single entry and cannot be extended unless you request an extension through a Peru embassy before your trip. For more information, check the Government of Canada’s travel page on Peru.

Travellers from the EU

With a valid passport with at least six months until expiry and two empty passport pages, travellers from Canada are eligible for a Tourist Visa on arrival, valid for 183 days. This stamp is single entry and cannot be extended unless you request an extension through a Peru embassy before your trip.

Travellers from the UK

With a valid passport with at least six months until expiry and two empty passport pages, travellers from Canada are eligible for a Tourist Visa on arrival, valid for 183 days. This stamp is single entry and cannot be extended unless you request an extension through a Peru embassy before your trip. Stay up-to-date with entry requirements on the UK’s travel page on Peru.

Travellers from the US

With a valid passport with at least six months until expiry and two empty passport pages, travellers from the US are eligible for a Tourist Visa on arrival, valid for 183 days. This stamp is single entry and cannot be extended unless you request an extension through a Peru embassy before your trip. For further information, visit the US travel page on Peru.

Trekking into the Rainforest Amazonia research Peru
Trekking into the Rainforest Amazonia research Peru

Interesting Facts About Peru

Make no mistake: even though Peru is not an enormous country, it boasts several claims to fame and fun facts! Here are some interesting things about Peru that perhaps you didn’t know.

  • Inca Cola is a national icon of Peru. Rather than Coca Cola, you’ll find bottles of a neon-yellow soda that is very sweet (too sweet for some). It tastes like a blend of bubble gum and cream soda. If you need an extra burst of energy, grab a bottle of Inca Cola!
  • Peru has the highest sand dune in the world, Cerro Blanco, which towers over the desert oasis of Huacachina at 1176m from base to summit.
  • There are over 3,000 varieties of potato and 55 types of corn grown in Peru.
  • Surfers, get stoked! Peru has the longest left-handed wave in the world, 4.0km long.
  • Peru’s diverse climate comprises 90 different microclimates.
  • Three-quarters of the world’s alpaca population lives in Peru.
  • Guinea pig, or cuy as it’s locally known, is a traditional delicacy in Peru. They are fried whole, so don’t be alarmed to see the head, legs, and eyes!
  • You can see penguins in Peru! Take a boat ride to the marine reserve in Paracas and observe these adorable animals on the rocky shores.
  • Beautiful and elusive pink dolphins swim in the Amazon River.
  • Cusco was the most important city during the peak of the Incan empire, ruling from present-day Quito, Ecuador, to Santiago, Chile.
  • Quinoa, that popular superfood that replaces white rice on your dinner plate, originated in the region around Lake Titicaca. It has been a staple in Peru for centuries—long before it hit North American grocery store shelves.
  • Peru does not observe Daylight Savings Time. The clocks never move forward or backward here.
  • Peru boasts 12 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, including Cusco, Machu Picchu, and several national parks.

Frequently Asked Questions About Peru

You’ve reached the end of the travel guide, but you may have some remaining questions. We’ll do our best to help you out. Here are some frequently asked questions about travelling to Peru.

What is the cheapest way to travel across Peru?

Travelling by bus is the cheapest way to get across Peru. The comprehensive network and bus terminals around the country make it not only cheap but easy, too. The more popular routes will have many options for companies and seat fares. Splurge on a first-class seat for a comfy ride with snacks included.

Where should I go in Peru for the first time?

If you are travelling with limited time, a loop between Cusco and Lima will be your best bet. You can hit the Sacred Valley highlights, including Machu Picchu, then head to the coast and visit the capital city. If you’re unsure where to go first, browse some adventure tours in Peru for inspiration.

What is Peru famous for?

Peru is famously known for the Incan empire and its cultural history. Machu Picchu and Cusco are both hot spots for observing Incan history. This country also calls to mind the Andes and the Amazon—both natural wonders and fantastic adventure regions.

What’s the food and drink like in Peru?

Depending on the region, the cuisine may include rice, fresh ceviche, root vegetables, chicken, and “salad,” which in Latin America means a few slices of tomato typically. If you drink alcohol and enjoy cocktails, don’t miss out on Peru’s signature Pisco Sour. Pisco, similar to brandy, is a high-proof spirit distilled from wine with grapes that grows natively in northern Chile and parts of Peru. Traditionally made with pisco, angostura bitters, egg white, lime juice, and simple syrup, this tasty drink will pair well with your local meals.

Hoatzin bird Peru Amazonia survival training expedition
Hoatzin bird Peru Amazonia survival training expedition

Is Peru expensive?

Compared to other South American destinations, Peru ranks as one of the cheaper ones. On a mid-range budget, you can expect to spend between $20–$70 per day. However, you will notice expense spikes in places like Machu Picchu and Lake Titicaca, renowned tourist destinations. Remember to include these kinds of attractions in your budget.

Can you drink the water in Peru?

The tap water in Peru is not safe to drink. If you need to use tap water as your water source, make sure to boil it for 1–3 minutes (longer time at higher altitudes)—pack purification tablets, Steripen, or a travel water filtration system to avoid buying bottled water daily. Using the tap water to brush your teeth depends on your level of caution: some travellers will use it freely, and others will boil water first or use bottled water.

Is Machu Picchu difficult to climb?

There are several ways to reach Machu Picchu, many of which are rewarding hiking routes, like the well-known Inca Trail. To reach Machu Picchu (if not arriving by tour bus), you will have to endure 1,600 steps, gaining altitude quickly. The climb is moderate to difficult, depending on your cardiovascular stamina and fitness. You’ll reach Machu Picchu in 1–2 hours. Keep in mind, it’s common to rise very early to climb and catch the sunrise, so take your time since you might be a little groggy. The altitude causes issues for some people, so make sure you acclimatize properly.

Why is Machu Picchu in danger?

Machu Picchu is at risk for a few different reasons. First, there are the obvious natural threats like heavy rains and landslides that could destroy this ancient archaeological site. The more significant threats, though, are human-imposed. Tourism alone causes damage to the site with an enormous amount of foot traffic—about half a million visitors per year. Unfortunately, Machu Picchu risks suffering from a new international airport soon to be built in Chinchero, a nearby village. Plans have been in the works for a while, with a scheduled opening in 2024.

Is Peru a developed country?

Peru is an emerging nation, although it still suffers from widespread poverty and lack of education. The economy has improved in recent years and continues to develop with certain projects, international loans, and infrastructure initiatives.

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