When planning your trip to Peru, there is a lot of general knowledge and advice for Peru to take on before you decide many things- what you do, where you go, what you can look forward to eating and drinking, the dangers of traveling in Peru (because as much as we all hate to admit it, there are risks involved with almost everything), and how you go about finding the right person to show you around.
Advice for Peru: What is the Best Time of the Year to Visit?
There are many different factors that come into play when deciding what time of year is best for you to come. Do you come and spend Christmas in Peru, or do you come to escape the heat of summer, in July or August?
It depends a little on what kind of holiday you are searching for. Peru doesn’t have the traditional seasons that other countries in the Northern Hemisphere have. It instead, has the wet and the dry season, as well as three distinct regions, that have their own weather attached. Below is a quick rundown about what kind of weather you can expect according to each month. I can’t give you the advice for Peru visiting months, as it will depend on what you want to experience.
(Cusco, Titicaca, Sacred Valley)
(Lima, Mancora, Trujillo)
(Iquitos, Tarapoto, Pullcalpa)
|January||Rain- expect heavy rain but some sunshine. Some trekking routes may be closed.||Brilliant bright sunshine, temperatures hitting around 30c||Rainy season- expect extremely heavy regular showers|
|February||The rainiest month of the year- many treks, including treks to Machu Picchu are closed.||Very hot weather. Because the coast of Peru is desert, it very rarely rains. Temperatures hitting around 32c||Rainy season- expect extremely heavy regular showers|
|March||Rains begin to ease up a little, but still in the rainy season. The sunshine comes back a little more.||The sunshine starts to ease up a little, but it’s still very much summer. Temperatures hitting around 28c||Rainy season- expect regular heavy showers|
|April||The last month of the rainy season- expect more sunshine and fewer showers this month.||In Lima, the sunshine disappears around April. There might be some sunny days, but the city becomes very cloudy. The rest of the coast remains sunny.||The rainy season is coming to an end, but in the jungle, there are showers all year round- just less heavy out of the rain season.|
|May||We’re officially in the dry season- but that means that the weather starts getting colder and the sun is out less.||Lima remains cloudy, the other parts of the coast remain sunny.||The weather is hot but expect some showers.|
|June||The dry season in the highlands is quite cold. Expect cold, dry weather.||Lima remains cloudy, the other parts of the coast remain sunny.||The weather is hot but expect some showers.|
|July||The dry season in the highlands is quite cold. Expect cold, dry weather.||Lima remains cloudy, the other parts of the coast remain sunny.||The weather is hot but expect some showers.|
|August||The dry season in the highlands is quite cold. Expect cold, dry weather.||Lima remains cloudy, the other parts of the coast remain sunny.||The weather is hot but expect some showers.|
|September||The dry season in the highlands is quite cold. Expect cold, dry weather.||Lima remains cloudy, the other parts of the coast remain sunny.||The weather is hot but expect some showers.|
|October||The dry season in the highlands is quite cold. Expect cold, dry weather.||Lima remains cloudy, the other parts of the coast remain sunny.||The weather is hot but expect some showers.|
|November||The dry season in the highlands is quite cold. Expect cold, dry weather.||Lima remains cloudy, the other parts of the coast remain sunny.||The weather is hot but expect some showers.|
|December||The beginning of the rainy season- the temperatures come up and expect showers.||The beginning of the warm season in Lima- other parts of the coastal area remain warm.||It’s the beginning of the rainy season, expect heavier showers than normal.|
The high tourism season runs from June through August, so if you want to skip the crowds and the questionable weather, October or May are your best choices- with October being the warmest of the two.
Advice for Peru: What to Eat
It’s well known throughout South America (and the world) that Peru has some of the best food and some of the best typical dishes to be found. Peruvians themselves are extremely proud of their dishes in each region and yes, each region has an extremely different style of cooking and of food. A great piece of advice for Peru is to stick to regional dishes. Tipping in Peru is appreciated but not always necessary.
For example, if you’re looking at places to eat in Lima and want a regional dish, then a fish dish (such as ceviche) is your best choice. Places outside of Lima such as the highlands (such as Cusco and the Sacred Valley) offer different styles of dishes- and to be honest, it’s not the best idea to get a coastal dish in the highlands or the jungle, as the fish won’t be as fresh.
Luckily, as I mentioned before, each region has its own specific dishes, such as Pachamanca (meat cooked underground in hot rocks) in the highlands, and huge amounts of delicious food from the jungle, based a lot around bananas, river fish, and pork- basically what is easily available to the people.
One of the best ways to really get to know the cuisine of a region (and I am choosing to say region instead of the country because each region, and even each city, has markedly different styles of cooking), is to take a cooking class to really get inside the city in an intimate way.
What to Drink in Peru
From regional beers- Cusqueno, Arequpeno, and Pilsen to name a few of the most popular (and the best) to liquor created by Peruvians for Peruvians, there are plenty of typical Peruvian drinks to try- both alcoholic and non-alcoholic, ranging from ‘maracuya’ (passionfruit juice) to coca tea. Another piece of advice for Peru is to really try as many of these drinks as possible while you’re visiting!
Peru even has an increasingly large number of vineyards, meaning that if you’re a wine lover you can spend a little time exploring the vineyards here- including the highest winery in the world.
Dangers in of Traveling in Peru
Our advice for Peru is that you take the proper precautions, like staying in the tourist areas of the city, not flashing expensive equipment and jewelry around, and listening to your guide, Peru is a remarkably safe place to holiday.
Where to Visit in Peru
From the hectic jungle city of Iquitos to the calm serenity of the Sacred Valley, there is so much of Peru to be enjoyed. If you’re a city lover you will fall in love with Lima- the lively capital city that holds a staggering one-third of the population within its sprawling city limits. If you’re a beach lover you can waste away weeks in Mancora or in Tumbes. If you’re out for an adventure and cultural exploration then you’ll leave your heart in Cusco.
However, it’s perfectly possible that your trip to Peru will be spoiled by having a guide who is unprepared, doesn’t have the right qualifications for your activities, or is generally there for the cash and not for the passion or care- all of these factors can really ruin your experience. Our best advice for Peru is to go out of your way to get a great guide in Peru is as important as choosing the right places to go.
If you want to beat the crowds, then you probably want to stay away from places like Rainbow Mountain, and even to an extent, the standard sacred valley tour, opting instead for an e-bike tour of the Sacred Valley, or the lesser-known Palcoyo.
The Inca Trail has so many people hiking it every day that it’s almost guaranteed that you’ll be falling over each other. However, you can take a 5-day Inca trail and skip the crowds, or you can do another trek entirely, like the Lares Trek, or even Choquequirao.
Feel free to contact us to start arranging your dream adventure with the peace of mind you deserve, to to get more advice for Peru.0