Peru is such a fascinating country! Travel here can be complex and confusing at times, however that's what makes it such an adventure; Where else can you go sandboarding in the Huacachina desert, fly over the famous Nazca lines, spot condors in the Colca canyon, eat and drink Coca leaves, spend a night with an Inca family on the Titicaca lake, climb up the Machu Picchu and experience an amazing adventure in the Amazon. This country really does have it all.
Travel Budget/Daily Costs Peru is a relatively inexpensive country and by staying in hostels and eating in local restaurants you can get by on a budget of around £20 a day or less.
When to go The best time to begin a Peru tour is between May to October. This is winter period for Peru which can make it a little cold at night but during the day the sun will shine most of the time which makes it very comfortable. The best thing about this period is that is dry season and except for the Amazon and Lima the chance of rain is quite small. This also means that you can have a great view of Machu Picchu most of the time.
Try to avoid travelling between November and March. This is the Peruvian summer and the coastal areas will be nice but it will rain a lot around Cusco. This means that sometimes roads cannot be travelled on and you won't have anything to do because it can keep raining for days. The original Inca Trail is closed every February.
What to see Where to start?!!! Peru is not your typical vacation destination. No white beaches, blue sea and places to relax. Bear this in mind when you're planning your Peru itinerary. You will be physically active throughout your whole trip. Below I list a few personal favorites:
Inca Trail and Macchu Picchu No trip to Peru would be complete with a trek along the Inca Trail to Macchu Picchu. The best time to do the trek is during the summer months from June to September.
Arequipa Such a nice city to visit. This mainly white city is located between snowy mountains and volcanoes. It is a good place to get adjusted to the altitude and there is enough to do. Relax on a terrace above the main square and a have a good view over Arequipa and the surrounding mountains covered in snow. Visit the museum of mummy Juanita, a young girl who was offered to the gods on a mountaintop. Her body is well preserved in the cold conditions. And take at least half a day to wander around the Santa Catalina Convent, a city within the city!
Colca Canyon From Arequipa you can make a tour to the Colca Canyon. You should at least take 2 days to go there. Driving up there you will pass a very high point of almost 5000 meters high. You could feel a bit ill at that time but chewing coca leafs, coca candies and drinking coca tea helps a bit. The canyon is incredible with it's agricultural Pre-Inca terraces, llamas, alpacas, vicunas and many other animals. You can make spectacular hikes and get into hot springs at night to avoid painful muscles the next morning. But the main reason you should go to the Colca Canyon is to see the condor. Every morning around 09.00 o'clock you have the chance to see condors at the cruz del Condor viewing point. We were lucky and saw about 15 of these huge birds.
If you fancy the idea of building your very own, totally personal Peru itinerary, take a look at Peru Travel Plan.