Peru can be described as an entire continent in one country. In Peru you will find everything from the endless desert to the soaring peaks of the Andes and the deep rainforest of the Amazon. Enjoy long stretches of coastline with a real beach atmosphere, vibrant cities, snow-capped volcanoes, impressive Inca ruins and rushing rivers.
On this page you will find practical information and facts about Peru.
PRACTICAL INFORMATION ABOUT TRAVELING IN PERU
Climate and best travel time
Peru is divided into 3 zones: the coastal zone, the mountain zone and the rainforest zone. In the coastal area, it is high season from January to March, the sun is shining and the weather is clear. The rest of the year there is often a thick fog along the coast that the sun only penetrates from time to time.
In the Andes and the rainforest, the climate is divided into rainy and dry periods. The best time for a trip is in the dry season from April to November. Remember that the temperature drops drastically at night in the mountains. Visit watchtutorials.org for Peru travel package.
There are ATMs for Visa and MasterCard in almost every medium-sized and large city, and you can withdraw both nuevo sol and US dollars. It is possible to pay with a credit card in many shops, hotels and restaurants, but often for a high fee, you are welcome to have a little extra cash ready. You can exchange US dollars in both banks and exchange offices (Casas de cambios that charge lower commissions) Warning: There are many counterfeit banknotes in circulation, both soles and US dollars. Therefore, always check your banknotes and have them replaced if they are damaged or lack the watermark.
conditions NOTE! The visa rules can be changed at short notice so we recommend that you check the current conditions at the country’s embassy or at The Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ website.
The following information may change.
Swedish citizens receive a tourist visa for up to 90 days free of charge on arrival in Peru – this applies both on arrival at the airport and across the border. Please note that your passport must be valid for at least six months upon arrival in Peru. The visa can be extended once by 30 days at immigration offices in the largest cities. The country must then be left for at least 48 hours before you can enter again with a new visa.
Along the coast from north to south is the paved Pan-American road, which means that transport through the country is fast. But if you go up through the Andes, it immediately becomes much more time consuming and often a rattling and cold experience. The bus system is good and efficient. Usually the bus companies have their offices in the same area or at a main terminal, where you can conveniently walk around and find the best deal and take a look at the buses. There are a number of bus companies with varying standards. The best bus company is Ormeno, which also has international routes. It is often possible to get a student discount. Buy tickets in advance if you can. There are thieves at bus stations, so keep an eye on your luggage and make sure your backpack stays in the trunk. Your luggage is not always handled with the same respect. This is why it is a good idea to put your backpack in an old potato bag or in a specially designed bag to avoid too many scratches and marks. At the same time, it does not look so interesting to potential thieves. In the remote regions, buses are often replaced by trucks. It can be a memorable experience to ride over the mountains on a truck bed – in the company of a lot of piglets on the way to the market.
The railway network is not very developed and works best in southern Peru. Unfortunately, the trains often run at night, as there are often thieves at the stations and also on the trains. A good tip is to only choose the trains that run during the day. It is often more expensive to travel by train than by bus, but on the stretch between Arequipa and Lake Titicaca it can be recommended, as the road is very bad.
As the distances in Peru are very long and time consuming, it may be a good idea to fly on certain routes. Many new airlines have been started in recent years and the competition is great, so it is possible to buy cheap domestic tickets. You can get good discounts if you buy your ticket seven days before departure. Price example: Cuzco to Lima, single ticket, approximately SEK 500.
In the rainforest of eastern Peru, rivers and airspace are often the only roads available. There are both motorized canoes and riverboats. If you like lying in a hammock, watching the ripples in the water and seeing the rainforest as a green line on the horizon, a riverboat is for you. Life in the small villages in the rainforest is often quiet and this week’s event can be the riverboat that adds. If you are lucky, your neighbor (who is rarely more than a palm away) is nice and you get a good trip, where you both talk and play guitar. The boats depart irregularly – so have plenty of patience.
In the larger cities there are a number of taxis, buses and collectivos (public buses that replace small buses). Taxis do not usually use taximeters, so negotiate the price in advance and do not give yourself too easily.
In most countries, tips are part of the salaries of employees in the service industry. Therefore, it is good practice (and sometimes directly necessary) to give tips to, for example, cleaning staff, waiters, guides, drivers, etc. depending on the country you are visiting. Therefore, we recommend that you familiarize yourself with how much is normally given in tips and to whom before you embark on your journey. Find information on tips in Lonely Planet’s guidebooks.
LANGUAGE: SPANISH, QUECHUA AND AYMARA
CLIMATE: TROPICAL, TEMPERATE AND POLAR CLIMATE IN THE MOUNTAINS
CURRENCY: NEW SUN
Peru’s varied and diverse culture and nature make a trip in the country an unforgettable experience. From visiting one of Lima’s markets and eating ceviche, to being in the desert and sledding or sandboarding down the large dunes, it does not take many hours. Because even though Peru offers almost all conceivable nature, it is easy to get around. From the coast and the desert landscape where the mythical Nazca lines cut through the sandy earth, it is not far to Arequipa – Peru’s second largest city. Here you will find the volcano El Mist and the ravine Colca Canyon, as well as many llamas that majestically adorn the landscape – and the barbecue in the evening. If you go into the country, the magnificent Andes are waiting to be explored.
Peru’s historical heritage
In Peru there are countless ruins and everywhere one marvels at the impressive architecture of ancient Native American culture. The Inca Indians in particular have left their mark on the fantastic ruins of Peru. North of the deep blue waters of Lake Titicaca are the highlands and the mythical city of Cusco. The area is home to the legendary Inca Trail and the mighty Inca ruins Machu Picchu and Choquequirao, as well as other beautiful ruins from both Inca and pre-Inca cultures. Cuzco is also a great place to go on a Spanish course with its beautiful surroundings and obvious excursion options.
From lush rainforest to soothing coast
From Cuzco, it is close to the lush rainforest of Puerto Maldonado in the Amazon, where wildlife and humans live in natural coexistence. The delta of the Amazon stretches to the northeast corner, where in the quiet rainforest city of Iquitos you can experience the city’s floating market, Belén. Here you can buy everything from Anaconda leather to fashion. Peru also has beautiful coasts with small picturesque towns where you can take a dip in the Pacific Ocean and digest all the experiences after the adventurous trip in Peru.