One of South America’s most popular destinations, Peru offers something for everyone. A land of contrasts, with mesmerising landscapes ranging from the highest peaks and the deepest canyon to the dry desert with green oasis valleys, and from tropical Amazon jungle to the highest navigable lake in the world.
The great range of restaurants in Peru, especially in Lima and Cusco, serve everything from Nuevo-Latino to international cuisine - or enjoy good, simple cafés which serve freshly prepared traditional dishes. You can find great seafood on the coast, including delicious ceviche.
Hotels range from international hotels to independently owned colonial style hotels and lodges.
Cusco and Machu Picchu, Arequipa and the Colca Canyon and Lake Titicaca are all at high altitude. This can cause initial breathlessness or a minor headache. This is usually relieved by resting on arrival and drinking plenty of water and coca tea (a local herbal tea).
Only a few people are affected by severe altitude sickness, but if you have doubts we recommend that you visit your doctor before traveling as prescription drugs are available to help with the symptoms.
For more info and ideas, contact us today.
Where to go in Peru
Set in a privileged geographic location on the Pacific coast, the capital city of Lima is a cosmopolitan, bustling, and inspiring city with its well-preserved colonial architecture and superb restaurants. A heavenly city for foodies and art lovers with an abundance of art galleries and excellent shops.
Immerse yourself in Peru’s ancient cultures and traditions. Machu Picchu, the Lost Inca Citadel in the cloud forest of the Andean foothills, is an engineering marvel built in harmony with nature.
Hike the Inca Trail – choose from a range of options from the one-day trek to the full 4-night/5-day camping experience!
Nestled in the Andes, Cusco, the capital of the Inca empire, is a charming and fascinating city with excellent hotels and restaurants. Feel the magic of the impressive Inca culture as you walk through its streets and explore its imposing fortresses and majestic citadels. The popular religious Inti Raymi festival takes place every year in June in Cusco and we recommend booking hotels well in advance for this period.
Between Cusco and Machu Picchu, lies the fertile Sacred Valley. Once the Inca's favourite spot, it is full of archaeological attractions and a perfect base for a great variety of adventure activities including white water rafting, horse riding, mountain biking and trekking.
Puno & Lake Titicaca
Puno, the capital of Peruvian folklore, where ancient history and traditions blend with the rugged mountain geography. It is home to the highest lake in the world, Lake Titicaca (almost 4000 metres above sea level), and to endless archaeological testimonies and ancient cultures.
Situated on the border with Bolivia, this vast and beautiful blue lake overlooked in the distance by the towering snow-topped Andes mountains boasts beautiful islands such as Los Uros, Taquile, and Amantaní, homes to native communities. Walk along the shores or sail its waters to reconnect with an unchanged past.
The “White City” of Arequipa & Colca Canyon
Located in Peru’s southern highlands, Arequipa, one of the most beautiful cities of the colonial period, is synonymous with greatness: exceptional architecture, phenomenal cuisine, majestic volcanoes, as well as one of the greatest attractions of southern Peru, the Colca Valley.
Following the route of the volcanoes, the imposing Colca Valley is the setting for the Colca Canyon, the second deepest canyon in the world (the first is Cotahuasi, also in Peru) and the natural habitat of the Andean condor, which dominates the skies with its majestic flight.
Ballestas Islands & Nasca Lines
From the beautiful bay of Paracas, take a fantastic boat journey to the Ballestas Islands (Crossbow Islands), a nature reserve with the largest concentration of guano-producing birds and sea lions on the Peruvian coast. Along the way, you will be able to see the mysterious Candelabro, a candlestick-shaped figure etched on a sandy hillside, associated with the Nasca Lines.
Fly over one of humankind’s greatest mysteries, the enigmatic Nasca Lines, pre-Columbian oversized symbols carved into the desert sand by the ancient Nasca people, covering an approximate surface area of 500km² and only fully appreciated from the air.
Take a journey of unique experiences through wonderful Peru by scenic trains.
The most popular is the 4-hour journey from Cusco to Machu Picchu taking you through the countryside of the Ollantaytambo Valley. There are a number of different train options to choose from including the exclusive and luxurious Belmond Hiram Bingham train.
Or take the Belmond “Andean Explorer” train between Cusco and Lake Titicaca, one of the highest routes in the world. During the day-long journey, you will be served a 3-course lunch and be able to appreciate the wonderful views of the magnificent Andes in comfort from your seat or from the fabulous viewing car.
Read more about Peru's trains at www.perurail.com
The Peruvian Amazon
One of the most biologically diverse areas in the world with different species of mammals, exotic birds and butterflies, the Peruvian Amazon can be reached from Iquitos or Puerto Maldonado, both a short flight from Lima or Cusco.
Iquitos offers Amazon cruises and jungle lodge stays whilst Puerto Maldonado, tucked away in south-eastern Peru at the confluence of the Madre de Dios and Tambopata rivers, is the gateway for a range of different lodge experiences.
When to go
In Lima and on the coast, the seasons are opposite to those in the Northern hemisphere with winter from June to October with cool, damp days and summer from December to March with hot, sunny days and temperatures between 25° and 30°C.
For visits to Machu Picchu and the highlands, bear in mind that the rainy season runs from December until March and the dry season is from June until October. You can expect sunshine throughout the year in the highlands but the temperatures drop considerably at night.
April is a nice time of year to visit as the highlands are lush and green following the rainy season and it is before the busiest period for visitors during Europe’s school summer holidays.
The rainy season in the Amazon also runs from December until March although you should expect showers throughout the year with hot and humid weather and temperatures between 23° and 32°C.
Where to go next
Combine Peru with a visit to Bolivia and Chile – cross Lake Titicaca to Bolivia and journey across the Uyuni salt flats before continuing across the highlands to Chile and the Atacama Desert, the highest desert in the world.
Another good combination is Peru and Ecuador – it is a 2½ hour flight from Lima to Quito where you can experience the highlands of Ecuador before joining a cruise to see the wildlife on the Galapagos Islands.
Map of Peru
Valid passport required.
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Always check with your doctor or medical centre in advance of travelling.
For current vaccination recommendations see: