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Peru - Best Tours & Trips 2019

905 trips to Peru tours from 169 tour companies. 1,926 reviews. 4.8/5 avg rating.
Peru is probably best known for Machu Picchu, a major destination for multi-day trekking tours. But Peru is also home to the Amazon Basin, the boisterous capital Lima, and 12,500-foot-high Lake Titicaca, with its host of artificial islands and bird life. Many travelers also combine trips to Peru with a visit to the Galapagos.
All Peru tours, river cruises, expedition cruises, and adventure trips. Find the best guided trips and expert planned vacation and holiday packages.
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Travel Style Travel Style Relaxed A lot of free time, with very few inclusions. Ideal for independent and/or low-key travelers and cruisers.
Full on For those looking to maximize their sight seeing time. You thrive on a packed day’s schedule from 8 am to 6pm, with some (but limited) free time. Most activities and meals included.
Mixed You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included.

Trip Type Trip Type Group Tour Groups are between 25-60 people, typically ~30-40. Usually there will be many opportunities to split off and enjoy meals and excursions in smaller groups. This is the most economical way to travel, saving up to 40% versus booking the same itinerary yourself.
Small Group Tour Small groups are usually defined as between 10 and 24 travelers, often less. If you're the kind of person who enjoys more intimate experiences and personal service this is a good choice. All else being equal you will pay a premium for this style vs a larger group tour.
River Cruise These vessels are smaller than most ocean cruisers, limiting which amenties are available. Passenger counts can vary. One of the biggest advantages of a river cruise is the ability to dock at smaller ports and local villages.
Small Ship Cruise Small ship cruises usually have a max passenger count of 500. The primary purpose of these trips is to spend time off the vessel in local ports (e.g. Mediterranean) or experiencing nature (e.g Galapagos or Antarctica). Cabins can vary from budget to luxury.
Private Guided Private tours give you the undivided attention of a guide, and often involve special access to sites and unique experiences not available to larger groups. This is a great option for families, couples, and small friend groups. Expect to pay a bit more for the extra service.
Self Guided / Independent Tour A travel company plans your itinerary and arranges all the logistics including lodging, local activities, and transportantion. You have the flexibility of a solo trip while still getting the convience and time savings of expert planning. Get 90% of the benefits of a tour, without a guide.
Vacation / Holiday Package Similar to a self guided tour, this usually involves a home base, such as a hotel or resort, with packaged activities and day tours as a part of the stay.
Large Ship Cruise This is the "floating city" experience, with multiple ways to enjoy your vacation aboard the ship as much as on land. Ships are multiple floors, provide several activities, culinary, and shopping options. They often make fewer stops and have less time available for shore excursions.

Itinerary Focus

Lodging Level Lodging Level Camping Typically involves most nights sleeping in tents (sometimes permanent tented sites) or in rustic cabins and lodges.
Basic - 2 star You'll stay in no-frills, but clean and comfortable, hotels or guesthouses. A 'Basic' trip might also involve a few nights of camping.
Value - 3 star Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels.
Premium - 4 star 3 to 4 star western hotel equivalents. While not all lodging will be 'luxury' they will be quite comfortable by western standards.
Luxury - 5 star The highest level of comfort and service. All accomodations are in four or five star hotels, boutique lodges or high-end homestays.

Price From*

$ 76 $ 10,000+

Price Per Day

Trip Length

Countries

Physical Level Physical Level Very Easy Minimal walking - motor vehicles available for all major parts of trip.
Easy Normal generally flat walking in urban or suburban environments.
Moderate Walking or physical activity half to most of day - no carrying equipment.
Strenuous All or most of day hiking or biking, hills included.
Extreme Very challenging all day hiking and backpacking carrying significant equipment.

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Rivers & Seas

Cities & Attractions

Activities

Solo Friendly Solo Friendly Good for Singles Trips that specifically cater to travelers looking to meet other singles.
No Single Supplement Trips where single supplement is usually not required for solo travelers.

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Continents & Regions

Stride Gives Back Stride Gives Back This trip visits a destination impacted by climate change. When you opt in to the Stride Gives Back program, we will donate 10% of our net revenue to organizations that help mitigate climate change in these destinations and across the globe. Learn more

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Peruvian Dream

Indus Travels
Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
8 days
$ 212 / day
$ 1,749
From : $ 2,294
The strike-through price reflects either the high season trip price or the average price a traveler pays for a similar itinerary when the components are booked separately.
Travel Style : You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included. Mixed
Physical Level : Regular walking or cycling over moderately long, hilly, or bumpy distances. Some public transport or utility vehicles such as safari jeeps. Moderate
Lodging Level : Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
Highlights
  • Admire the colonial architecture of the capital city, Lima
  • Hike to the deep forest and admire the majestic Lake Apu Victor surrounded by swamps and gigantic trees
  • Visit one of the most significant archaeological sites on the planet, Machu Picchu
  • Enjoy a panoramic tour of Cusco and many significant attractions
Visits:
Cusco, Lima, Puerto Maldonado, Peru
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Peru Encompassed

Intrepid Travel
Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
21 days
$ 164 / day
$ 3,591
From : $ 4,655
The strike-through price reflects either the high season trip price or the average price a traveler pays for a similar itinerary when the components are booked separately.
Travel Style : You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included. Mixed
Physical Level : Full day hiking or trekking over medium to long distances. Moderate expectation of physical fitness. Strenuous
Lodging Level : Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
Highlights
  • Lima’s grand colonial facades, Spanish houses and endless culture make it one of the prettiest cities in Latin America. Adjust to the altitude with a pisco sour and some ceviche
  • Seeing the enigmatic Nazca Lines is an incredible experience, whether they’re the work of ancient civilizations or something more supernatural
  • Whether you trek the classic Inca Trail, the Inca Quarry Trail or take the scenic train route, the ancient ruins of Machu Picchu are a majestic destination, no matter how you get there
  • The floating islands of Uros on Lake Titicaca are a marvel of concept, construction and history. Take a boat tour on the lake and spend the night with a local family in a traditional island community
  • Explore Cusco, South America's oldest continuously inhabited city. The city has ancient foundations, an interesting blend of Inca and colonial influences and endless things to see and do
  • The Colca Canyon is twice as deep as the Grand Canyon, and some might even say, twice as grand. Witness the dizzying scenery, soaring condors and the terraced crops of the locals
  • The Amazon Jungle is known as the world's lungs. Get a glimpse into a wild place with some of the largest biodiversity on Earth
Visits:
Aguas Calientes, Arequipa, Cusco, Inca Trail, Lake Titicaca, Lima, Machu Picchu, Nazca, Ollantaytambo, Puerto Maldonado, Puno, Peru
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Enchanting Peru

SmarTours
Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
11 days
$ 209 / day
$ 2,299
From : $ 5,697
The strike-through price reflects either the high season trip price or the average price a traveler pays for a similar itinerary when the components are booked separately.
Travel Style : You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included. Mixed
Physical Level : Regular walking or cycling over moderately long, hilly, or bumpy distances. Some public transport or utility vehicles such as safari jeeps. Moderate
Lodging Level : Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
Highlights
  • Board on rail to see Machu Picchu
  • Visit the world renowned and colorful Indian market in Pisac 
  • Enjoy a guided walking tour around Cuzco
  • Visit lake Titicaca
  • Embark on an unforgettable boat journey to explore the magnificent scenery and fascinating life on and around the lake. 
  • Visit the floating islands of the Uros Indians
  • Enjoy a guided afternoon tour of both colonial and modern Lima
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Visits:
Andes Mountains, Cusco, Inca Trail, Lake Titicaca, Lima, Machu Picchu, Ollantaytambo, Puno, Sacred Valley, Urubamba, Peru
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Luxury Travel In Peru: The Inca Trail & The Amazon
Private Guided
Stride climate
This trip visits a destination that is affected by climate change

Luxury Travel In Peru: The Inca Trail & The Amazon

Global Basecamps
Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
12 days
$ 386 / day
$ 4,636
From : $ 5,285
The strike-through price reflects either the high season trip price or the average price a traveler pays for a similar itinerary when the components are booked separately.
Travel Style : For those looking to maximize their sight seeing time. You thrive on a packed day’s schedule from 8 am to 6pm, with some (but limited) free time. Most activities and meals included. Full on
Physical Level : Regular walking or cycling over moderately long, hilly, or bumpy distances. Some public transport or utility vehicles such as safari jeeps. Moderate
Lodging Level : The highest level of comfort and service. All accomodations are in four or five star hotels, boutique lodges or high-end homestays. Luxury - 5 star
Highlights
  • Explore Cusco and the Sacred Valley on your way to the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu
  • After, fly down to the Amazon Rainforest, for a truly Luxury Amazon Rainforest experience
  • Stay in some of the most luxurious hotels and lodges in all South America
Visits:
Cusco, Sacred Valley, Inca Trail, Machu Picchu, Amazon Rainforest, Peru
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Peru by Land and Water tour
Group Tour
Popular
Stride climate
This trip visits a destination that is affected by climate change

Peru by Land and Water

Lost World Adventures
Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
14 days
$ 338 / day
$ 4,725
From : $ 5,812
The strike-through price reflects either the high season trip price or the average price a traveler pays for a similar itinerary when the components are booked separately.
Travel Style : You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included. Mixed
Physical Level : Some walking over short or flat distances. Some trips may include cycling options. Some are wheelchair friendly (check for individual trips). Some cruises. Easy
Lodging Level : 3 to 4 star western hotel equivalents. While not all lodging will be 'luxury' they will be quite comfortable by western standards. Premium - 4 star
Highlights
  • Explore Lima
  • Visit the ruins on your own or explore Aguas Calientes
  • Explore the walls, stairways, temples and terraces of Machu Picchu.
  • Visit the colorful Pisac market where you'll be able to trade with locals for a variety of handicrafts
  • Explore the heart of Amazon River on board of the Amatista River boat.
  • Visit the Pacaya-Samiria Reserve, Peru's largest national park
  • Explore Iquitos
Visits:
Cusco, Iquitos, Lima, Machu Picchu, Ollantaytambo, Sacred Valley, Urubamba, Peru
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Essential Peru - Inti Raymi Festival

Exodus Travels
Preferred
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
17 days
$ 206 / day
$ 3,499
From : $ 4,724
The strike-through price reflects either the high season trip price or the average price a traveler pays for a similar itinerary when the components are booked separately.
Travel Style : You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included. Mixed
Physical Level : Regular walking or cycling over moderately long, hilly, or bumpy distances. Some public transport or utility vehicles such as safari jeeps. Moderate
Lodging Level : Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
Highlights
  • Attend 'The Festival of the sun' (Inti Raymi), when Cuzco is awash with dancing and processions
  • Iconic Machu Picchu by train with guided tour
  • Homestay on traditional Amantani Island, Lake Titicaca
  • Colca Canyon and its soaring condors
  • Beautiful colonial city of Arequipa and the Santa Catalina Convent
  • Drive deep into the Andean highlands and the Apurimac Valley
Visits:
Lima, Machu Picchu, Nazca, Lake Titicaca, Peru
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Essential Perú

13 days
$ 500 / day
$ 6,500
From : $ 7,410
The strike-through price reflects either the high season trip price or the average price a traveler pays for a similar itinerary when the components are booked separately.
Travel Style : You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included. Mixed
Physical Level : Some walking over short or flat distances. Some trips may include cycling options. Some are wheelchair friendly (check for individual trips). Some cruises. Easy
Lodging Level : The highest level of comfort and service. All accomodations are in four or five star hotels, boutique lodges or high-end homestays. Luxury - 5 star
Highlights
  • Explore Cusco, Sacred Valley, Lake Titicaca
  • Visit an ancient adobe pyramid right in the middle of the city, Huaca Huallamarca
  • Visit  Awanacancha where you will have the opportunity to see the different camelids that live in the Andes
  • Discover Machu Picchu, Colca Canyon and Arequipa
  • Visit Koricancha, the most sumptuous “Sun Temple” in the Inca Empire
Visits:
Andes Mountains, Arequipa, Cusco, Lake Titicaca, Lima, Machu Picchu, Ollantaytambo, Puno, Sacred Valley, Urubamba, Peru
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Peru: Machu Picchu Inn to Inn

National Geographic Expeditions
Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
10 days
$ 630 / day
$ 6,295
Travel Style : For those looking to maximize their sight seeing time. You thrive on a packed day’s schedule from 8 am to 6pm, with some (but limited) free time. Most activities and meals included. Full on
Physical Level : Full day hiking or trekking over medium to long distances. Moderate expectation of physical fitness. Strenuous
Lodging Level : The highest level of comfort and service. All accomodations are in four or five star hotels, boutique lodges or high-end homestays. Luxury - 5 star
Highlights
  • Trek high among the majestic peaks of the Cordillera Vilcabamba to Machu Picchu.
  • Spend a full day and a half exploring the magnificent citadel of Machu Picchu.
  • Delve into the enchanting world of the Inca during an evening with National Geographic grantee Peter Frost.
  • Relax in beautiful mountain lodges set amid spectacular scenery.
Visits:
Andes Mountains, Cusco, Lima, Machu Picchu, Urubamba, Peru
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Salcantay Trek & Machu Picchu

World Expeditions
Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
7 days
$ 257 / day
$ 1,799
From : $ 2,519
The strike-through price reflects either the high season trip price or the average price a traveler pays for a similar itinerary when the components are booked separately.
Travel Style : For those looking to maximize their sight seeing time. You thrive on a packed day’s schedule from 8 am to 6pm, with some (but limited) free time. Most activities and meals included. Full on
Physical Level : High intensity hiking, trekking, mountain climbing, cycling. May experience dramatic changes in altitude. Extreme activities included. Extreme
Lodging Level : You'll stay in no-frills, but clean and comfortable, hotels or guesthouses. A 'Basic' trip might also involve a few nights of camping. Basic - 2 star
Highlights
  • Hike up the Salcantay Pass (4,638m) and admire the amazing views
  • Trek the picturesque Salcantay region with dramatic mountain scenery & enjoy 3 hearty meals a day on trek prepared by our cooks
  • Discover the enigmatic ruins of Machu Picchu before the crowds arrive
  • Undertake a trek through lush bamboo forests, orchards and coffee plantations, enjoying scenic lunch stops
  • Journey to the beautiful Sacred Valley and the village of Ollantaytambo
Visits:
Cusco, Sacred Valley, Machu Picchu, Peru
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Explore Northern Peru

G Adventures
Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
9 days
$ 208 / day
$ 2,399
Travel Style : You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included. Mixed
Physical Level : Regular walking or cycling over moderately long, hilly, or bumpy distances. Some public transport or utility vehicles such as safari jeeps. Moderate
Lodging Level : 3 to 4 star western hotel equivalents. While not all lodging will be 'luxury' they will be quite comfortable by western standards. Premium - 4 star
Highlights
  • Immerse yourself in culture and history of the chachapoyas
  • Hike through the cloud forest to the gocta waterfall
  • Visit vibrant coastal cities rich in cultural history
  • Explore a series of tombs built by the pre-inca moche culture
  • Wander through the adobe brick city of chan chan
Visits:
Lima, Peru
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Private Peru Explorer

Global Basecamps
Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
12 days
$ 493 / day
$ 5,914
From : $ 6,742
The strike-through price reflects either the high season trip price or the average price a traveler pays for a similar itinerary when the components are booked separately.
Travel Style : A lot of free time, with very few inclusions. Ideal for independent and/or low-key travelers and cruisers. Relaxed
Physical Level : Regular walking or cycling over moderately long, hilly, or bumpy distances. Some public transport or utility vehicles such as safari jeeps. Moderate
Lodging Level : The highest level of comfort and service. All accomodations are in four or five star hotels, boutique lodges or high-end homestays. Luxury - 5 star
Highlights
  • Explore the capital Lima, before flying over the Andes to Cusco and the Sacred Valley
  • Journey by train to Machu Picchu, and then by plane to Lake Titicaca, the highest navigable lake in the world
Visits:
Lima, Cusco, Sacred Valley, Machu Picchu, Lake Titicaca, Peru
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7 Day Peru Silver Program

Pacific Delight Tours
Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
7 days
Check price
Travel Style : A lot of free time, with very few inclusions. Ideal for independent and/or low-key travelers and cruisers. Relaxed
Physical Level : Some walking over short or flat distances. Some trips may include cycling options. Some are wheelchair friendly (check for individual trips). Some cruises. Easy
Lodging Level : 3 to 4 star western hotel equivalents. While not all lodging will be 'luxury' they will be quite comfortable by western standards. Premium - 4 star
Highlights
  • Drive to the Sacred Valley of the Incas. On the way, visit Awanakancha, a living museum of Andean cameloids including Llamas, Alpacas
  • Visit to the Salt Mines of Maras
  • Visit to Cusco's most important landmarks of both the Inca and the Colonial times.
  • Visit Qoricancha, also known as the temple of the sun a catholic monastery, Santo Domingo, was built on the site, partly including the Incan Walls of the Sun Temple
  • Visit the ancient Inca’s storage palaces: Tambo and Pukapukara
Visits:
Cusco, Lima, Machu Picchu, Sacred Valley, Peru
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Peru Highlights

Peregrine Adventures
Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
21 days
$ 307 / day
$ 5,922
From : $ 8,701
The strike-through price reflects either the high season trip price or the average price a traveler pays for a similar itinerary when the components are booked separately.
Travel Style : You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included. Mixed
Physical Level : Regular walking or cycling over moderately long, hilly, or bumpy distances. Some public transport or utility vehicles such as safari jeeps. Moderate
Lodging Level : Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
Highlights
  • The floating reed islands of uros on lake titicaca are a marvel of concept, construction and history. take a boat tour on the world's highest navigable lake,
  • Enjoy a 2-night 'feature stay' at the private island of suasi on the lake titicaca. watch the sun go down at the highest point of the island while enjoying a truly memorable picnic and drinks
  • Visit the iconic machu picchu not once - but twice for a comprehensive experience
  • Visit the magnificent colca canyon, deeper than the grand canyon and dotted with ancient indian villages
  • Join a specialist historian guide on one of you included visits to an archaeological site around cusco who will provide interesting insight and knowledge about peru's history and culture
  • Marvel at ancient incan architecture throughout the fertile sacred valley, before discovering the mother of all inca cities, magical machu picchu
  • Peru is a world-class culinary destination. visit an area unknown to tourists and try a variety of street food and authentic peruvian desserts
  • Choose to add an inca trail hike to your trip, or simply sit back and relax with a private transfer to machu picchu
  • Enjoy a 2 night 'feature stay' in an amazon lodge. experience the untouched world of the amazon rainforest. stroll along jungle trails on the lookout for monkeys, parrots, otters and caymans, and sleep in a nature lodge lit by candles and kerosene lamps
Visits:
Arequipa, Cusco, Lake Titicaca, Lima, Machu Picchu, Puno, Sacred Valley, Urubamba, Inca Trail, Nazca, Peru
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Lights of the Inca Empire – 8 Days

Say Hueque
Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
8 days
$ 168 / day
$ 1,340
From : $ 1,809
The strike-through price reflects either the high season trip price or the average price a traveler pays for a similar itinerary when the components are booked separately.
Travel Style : You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included. Mixed
Physical Level : Some walking over short or flat distances. Some trips may include cycling options. Some are wheelchair friendly (check for individual trips). Some cruises. Easy
Lodging Level : Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
Highlights
  • Explore Lima
  • Discover Cusco
  • See Sacred Valley
  • Visit to Machu Picchu
Visits:
Aguas Calientes, Cusco, Inca Trail, Lima, Machu Picchu, Ollantaytambo, Pacific Ocean, Sacred Valley, Urubamba, Peru
View Trip

Peru Uncovered(Without Inca Trail Trek,Start Lima ...

Contiki
Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
14 days
$ 202 / day
$ 2,825
From : $ 3,814
The strike-through price reflects either the high season trip price or the average price a traveler pays for a similar itinerary when the components are booked separately.
Travel Style : N/A
Physical Level : N/A
  • N/A
  • Lodging Level : Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
    Highlights
    • Visit Cruz del Condor
    • Visit Maca
    • Ride on a triciclo
    • Island boat trip on Lake Titicaca
    • Visit Taquile and Uros island communities
    • City Walking Tour
    • Visit San Blas Koricancha and San Pedro Market
    • Entry into the Sacred Valley and Pisac ruins
    • Visit Llama Farm
    Visits:
    Aguas Calientes, Arequipa, Cusco, Inca Trail, Lake Titicaca, Lima, Machu Picchu, Puerto Maldonado, Puno, Sacred Valley, Peru
    View Trip
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    Top Peru Experiences and Attractions

    Top Peru Experiences

    Exploring the coastal city of Lima

    Experiencing the tranquility of Sacred Valley and diving into ancient history

    The thrill of hiking the Inca Trail and following in the footsteps of the ancient Inca

    Walking through the historic city of Arequipa

    Taking an Amazon river cruise and spotting amazing wildlife

    Seeing the mysterious Incan Nazca Lines, and hearing potential theories of how and why they were built. 

    Learning about the mysteries behind the ruins on a Machu Picchu tour

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    Peru Trip Reviews

    1,926 Peru Tour Reviews - Summary 99% Recommend

    4.8 out of 5
    Excellent 1,534
    Great 343
    Average 32
    Disappointing 14
    Terrible 3
    Value
    4.8
    Guide
    4.8
    Activities
    4.8
    Lodging
    4.8
    Transportation
    4.8
    Meals
    4.8

    Tour Reviews Write a Review

    It was amazing!

    5.0
    • Value 5.0
    • Guide 5.0
    • Activities 5.0
    • Lodging 5.0
    • Transportation 5.0
    • Meals 5.0

    We are just returning from our 15 days trip to Peru. It was amazing ! Peru is such a beautiful country. People there are very friendly. A special thanks to Peru for Less team for helping us creating a memorable itineraries. We are visiting Lima, Cuzco, Puno and Puerto Maldonado to name a few. Silvana Zavala & Matthew Hay are our travel advisors. They have done a great job from the beginning to end.Thank you to both of you. I have already recommended your company to some of our friends who are interested to visit Peru after seeing our pictures. Tour guides are very knowledgeable, accommodations are excellent. All hotels we stayed are very clean & comfortable.

    Read more
    Operator Peru For Less

    Amazing, intimate experience of the best of Peru!

    5.0
    • Value 5.0
    • Guide 5.0
    • Activities 5.0
    • Lodging 5.0
    • Transportation 5.0
    • Meals 5.0

    My husband and I wanted to visit Peru, but were nervous about accommodations, getting around, language barriers, and making the most of our trip. We are seasoned travelers, so we thrive on intimate experiences and most importantly local authentic food. We decided to do the Taste of Peru given past experiences with The Table Less Traveled. It did not disappoint. The trip was amazing! Not only did we dine at michelin star restaurants, have private dining experiences hosted by locals, participated in local cooking classes, visited salt mines and learned about the process, we had a private guided tour of Machu Picchu!! It was the experience of a lifetime. Annie also made sure I stayed food save the entire trip given my shellfish allergy (I was shocked to learn how much they use shellfish for cooking and seasoning). The accommodations were also amazing, no US branded hotels but local boutique accommodations with 5-star service and feel. We're looking forward to Japan and Malaysia/Singapore with The Table Less Traveled this and next year!

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    Operator The Table Less Traveled

    Traveling with ACIS takes all the…

    5.0
    • Value 5.0
    • Guide 5.0
    • Activities 5.0
    • Lodging 5.0
    • Transportation 5.0
    • Meals 5.0

    Traveling with ACIS takes all the anxiety and pressure off of me and I can concentrate on enjoying the trip with my students and embracing the new adventure.

    Read more
    Operator ACIS

    What an AMAZING 6 week trip of 6 countries!

    5.0
    • Value 5.0
    • Guide 5.0
    • Activities 5.0
    • Lodging 4.0
    • Transportation 5.0
    • Meals 4.0

    My first ever trip in smaller numbers - loved it, yes, loved it so much as we could do things that larger groups can not do. Ecuador, Peru including the Amazon region, Bolivia, Chile, Argentina, Brazil were awash with fantastic experiences with the stunning and majestic sights, the people and their culture, the food, animal and bird life and of course, what I accomplished by surprising myself at the Incan ruins. Our guides, Alejandro in Ecuador, Sally in Peru and Sabina in Chile, Argentina and Brazil were just the best Ambassadors for Peregrine as they showed such passion for their country and genuine care for each of our small number to return home with amazing memories to abide in our hearts forever. Muchas Gracias to each of you as you have touched my life with a very special imprint. I highly recommend this full trip for the entire 6 weeks just in case you have not noticed.

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    Operator Peregrine Adventures

    We just did an amazing 4 day hike with Action Peru

    5.0
    • Value 5.0
    • Guide 5.0
    • Activities 5.0
    • Lodging 5.0
    • Transportation 5.0
    • Meals 5.0

    We just did an amazing 4 day hike with Action Peru in Machu Picchu and had a fantastic time! The staff during our hike were outstanding and thoughtful. I didn't have much time to get used to the altitude change but they had a 'taxi' horse for me on the first day, which was a big relief! I even got a birthday cake while camping! Freddy went out of his way to make sure we had everything we needed to be comfortable and he was with us all the way through right up to the sun gate! I would highly recommend using Action Peru!

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    Operator Action Peru Treks

    Excelente!!

    5.0
    • Value 5.0
    • Guide 5.0
    • Activities 5.0
    • Lodging 5.0
    • Transportation 5.0
    • Meals 5.0

    Excelente atendimento recebido pela empresa.

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    Operator Inka Rainbow

    Peru Tours and Travel Guide

    Peru Attractions & Landmarks Guide

    Peru is probably best known for Machu Picchu, a major destination for multi-day trekking tours. But Peru is also home to the Amazon Basin, historic Spanish colonial-era cities, the boisterous capital Lima, and a share of 12,500-foot-high Lake Titicaca, with its host of artificial islands and bird life. Many travelers also combine trips to Peru with a visit to the Galapagos. 

    Peru: The name conjures up images of majestic natural wonders, deep canyons, Amazonian wildlife, superlative lakes, sacred valleys, and, of course, Machu Picchu - the Lost City of the Incas.

    This is all for good reason -- Peru provides a little bit of everything, especially for the adventurous traveler. Few destinations captivate like Peru or offer such a diverse array of experiences packed into such a small country.

    World-renowned Archaeological Treasures

    Peru is home to one of the world’s most famous ruins: Machu Picchu. Nestled high in the Andean mountains, this nearly impenetrable site is a relic of a bygone Incan Empire, and is sure to captivate you with its physical impressiveness and the mystery surrounding the site. As you walk the sacred steps up to the former citadel, hanging on a dramatic cliff side, you’ll take in mountain vistas of rivers, waterfalls, and the ruins themselves for a memory you’ll cherish for life.  

    Whether you climb the mighty Andean spine across the legendary Inca trail, or sit in luxury aboard a classic train traversing the Sacred Valley, getting to Machu Picchu is half the experience. Traveling from the vibrant city of Cusco, a destination in its own right, to Machu Picchu you will find captivating Incan sites, quaint towns, archaeological gems, and natural wonders.  

    The Incans were not the only ones who established a foothold on these sacred lands. Go down from the mountains to the desert beaches to discover enigmatic pre-Incan civilizations. Encounter the beautiful tombs of the Moche civilization in Chiclayo, fly over the Nazca lines and ponder their mystery, or explore the UNESCO-listed Chan Chan –the former capital of the Chimu empire and the largest adobe city in the world.

    Visiting Machu Picchu in Peru

    While there is much to see in Peru, it is undeniable that Machu Picchu is one of the country's biggest attractions. This magnificent site high in the Andes is a classic bucket list item, and well worth seeing once.

    There are many ways to get to Machu Picchu. One of them most popular still is the Inca Trail. The Inca Trail is a trek along the Andean peaks and valleys to get to the specific spot of Machu Picchu, and although it is difficult, this hike is manageable for most able bodied and relatively fit travelers, and an incredible experience.

    The trail takes 4 to 5 days to complete and you’ll be surrounded by spectacular scenery and history, brought to life by your guide the entire way. Historians suspect the Inca Trail was established for spiritual journeys, and even visitors traveling to Machu Picchu find the trek to have deeper meaning. 

    If you’re planning to hike the Inca Trail, be sure you purchase your permit into the park well ahead of time. They sell out extremely fast, and a limited number of people (500) are permitted on the trail per day. This includes porters and guides. Six months in advance is a good bet to ensure yourself a spot. It is also worth noting that you cannot hike the trail without a guide. Most large tour companies offer a Machu Picchu trek, so you have a lot of choice. Use Stride’s filtering tools to find the right tour size for you.

    However, travelers are beginning to discover the other ways you can hike to Machu Picchu, which include the Lares Trek and Salkantay Trek. The Lares Treks is comparable, difficulty wise to the Inca Trail, but Salkantay is quite a bit more challenging, both in length and type.  

    Tours to Machu Picchu begin in Cusco, where you can take a few days to acclimate to the altitude, as well as get an introduction to Inca history in preparation for your journey into history.

    If you’re not hiking, you will take one of three rail journeys from Cusco to Aguas Calientes. There are different price points, but if you’re willing to splurge, the Belmond Hiram Bingham train is well worth the price. Drift through the Sacred Valley in luxury, while gazing out at the historic landscape through large windows.

    Aguas Calientes is the main hub for travelers going to Machu Picchu, about 15 minutes away from the site by bus. It is a good idea to stay in Aguas Calientes for a few days. Let yourself relax and not worry about seeing all of Machu Picchu in one fell swoop.

    Use one day to catch the first bus after waiting in line at 4am to see the sunrise, but use your second day to go later. If you have time, don’t pass up a visit to the hot springs (Aguas Calientes literally translates to “hot water”.

    The Diverse Natural Beauty of Peru

    Though Peru is a small and navigable country, it boasts more biodiversity than the entire North American continent. This boils down to one major feature the country has access to: the Amazon Rainforest. Peru is the perfect base for the world’s most impressive rainforest: the mighty Amazon. Among many lodging options are eco-lodges nestled deep in the jungle, providing opportunities to encounter colorful toucans and macaws, howler monkeys, pink river dolphins, and perhaps even an elusive jaguar.

    Beyond the Amazon, you can tour Manu National Park and the unique moss-covered Peruvian Yunga region, home to some of the world’s best birding. Afterwards, you can head toward the northern beaches to park a tent in beautiful sun-splashed Punta Sal or catch a wave at Huancayo, the world’s very first surfing beach.

    Then of course there’s the unparalleled beauty of the Andes Mountains. There are many ways to discover the incredible Andes, from multi day hikes along historic trails, to treks through ancient villages.

    Dotted throughout with ruins of ancient settlements, the Peruvian Andes are a pathway through history. Llamas roam the hills and native Andean people live here as they have for centuries. Nothing quite achieves the separation from the modern world like a trip through the Andes.

    Peru Adventure Travel

    Like much of South America, Peru is a natural destination for adventure travel - but not just of the zipline variety. In Peru, you can tour Lake Titicaca, the legendary lake on top of the world with it's intriguing customs and legends. Here, you’ll tour Puno’s fascinating floating artificial islands, and you can even stay in a freshwater island resort. These a breathtaking high-altitude retreats come complete with superlative sunsets, and allow you to experience Peru in a truly unique way.

    Of course there’s the famous trek to Machu Picchu along the Inca Trail. This adventure is once in a lifetime and on the bucket list of many a traveler - both young and old. The Inca Trail is achievable for most healthy and moderately physically fit people, and an adventure in which you’ll follow in the footsteps of explorers and the ancient Inca Empire to reach the magnificent ruins of Machu Picchu.

    If, however, you are unable to trek, or less interested in 4 hard days of hiking through altitude up treacherous hills and camping on hard ground, there are other ways to reach Machu Picchu! Consider traveling on a rail journey through the beautiful Sacred Valley.

    This is a very popular option for older travelers or those with young children. It’s also a good idea if you’re only in Peru a short time. You will still get an adventure and a half as you arrive in Aguas Calientes and eagerly await the bus to Machu Picchu.

    For those who prefer more vigorous outdoors adventure, Peru also offers the unique Colca Canyon. Twice as deep as the Grand Canyon, the Colca Canyon is replete with Incan terraces and natural beauty. For incredible photo ops, go to Cruz del Condor, a peak where flocks of the normally reclusive Andean condor swarm at sunrise. Visit on a day hike or some tours operate multi day treks through the incredible landscape.

    Trekking enthusiasts looking for opportunities in Peru beyond Machu Picchu, should absolutely explore the Cordillera Blanca mountain range. Wind your way through tiny Andean villages and take in breathtaking views of lakes and sheer rock faces.

    There is also an area of Peru known as the “poor man’s Galapagos.” This is Islas Ballestas, where you can travel to see incredible diverse wildlife, including some similar species to those you will experience in the Galapagos. These include penguins, sea lions, and Peruvian boobies.

    Cultural Discoveries in Peru

    Immersing yourself in Peru also means discovering its vibrant cities. Lima, Peru’s capital, offers fascinating museums and “peñas,” lively traditional dance halls that hold weekly Peruvian dance shows. Though travelers should remain cautious in Lima, which is still a big city in a developing country, a tour in particular you will find more peace of mind than as a solo traveler.

    For a different urban experience, a tour of Peru could include the magnificent white city of Arequipa and its Spanish colonial treasures. Arequipa is an architectural wonder, famous for its intact 16th century churches, and home to Monesterio de Santa Catalina, a “city within a city,” whose pastel walls and priceless frescoes make it one of the most beautiful convents in the world.

    Cusco is another of Peru’s exciting cities, though often thought of as a mere stepping stone to Machu Picchu. However, it is so much more. Travelers are discovering the delights of Cusco, which include its long and fascinating history as the capital of the Inca Empire, followed by the Spanish occupation and colonization.

    Festivals in Peru

    In Peru, culture is never far off. Every weekend, towns across the country have celebrations and festivals where you can watch somber religious processions followed by raucous folk marching bands.

    Deep ties to folklore from many native tribes, as well as many Spanish influenced customs make Peru one of the best destinations for celebrations, and parades.

    Some Peruvian festivals you might encounter while on a tour in Peru include:

    1. Carnaval, March: Perhaps the best known festival, Carnaval is celebrated throughout South America, taking place in the days leading up to the Catholic holiday of Lent. Carnaval is a bright and vibrant multi-day celebration. One of the best places in Peru to experience this festival is Cajamarca in Northern Peru, where traditional dances and ancient traditions are in the forefront.

    2. Fiesta de la Vendimia, March: this is a traditional wine festival, which takes place in Ica, a small town on Peru’s southern coast. Complete with grape stomping events, tastings, music and dancing, it’s a can’t miss event for wine enthusiasts.

    3. Fiesta de la Cruz, May: This is the “festival of the cross” and while it has significant religious meaning and undertones, like much of the festivals in Peru, it’s more about celebration than sombor devotion. Go just to see the mysterious “scissor dancers” a tradition that harkens back to the 16th century, connected to resistance to Spanish rule.

    4. Fiesta del Inti Raymi (Festival of the Sun), June: The ancient Inca were obsessed with the Sun, and this festival is directly related to some of their more serious beliefs. Celebrated on the winter solstice every year, this festival involves colorful traditional dress, parades, and performances to native music and using native instruments, all presented in worship to the sun. If you’re in Cusco on June 24th, this is an event not to be missed.

    5. Virgen del Carmen, July: In the small town of Paucartambo, one of the more raucous festivals is held. With three days of drinking, dancing, eating, music and singing in the traditional language of Quechua. This is a celebration that draws people by the thousands. Go for the intense energy as people go through the streets wearing scary costumes, and masks. Often the celebrations end up at the cemetery.  

    6. Puno week, November: Puno is known as the “folklore capital of Peru” so it’s no wonder it has one of the most popular festivals. This particular week-long festival is to celebrate the Amerindian roots in the area. An enormous procession happens from Lake Titicaca into the center of Puno, with loud music, dancing, and revelry.

    Peruvian Amazon and Rainforest Tours

    The imposing Amazon is one of the longest rivers in the world, and winds its way through six countries, including Bolivia, Venezuela, Brazil, and Ecuador. Peru is it’s source, and one of the most ecologically diverse portions of the Amazon River - 60% of Peru’s landscape belongs to the Amazon, separated into two distinct ecological regions, and home to 5% of the country's population.

    Amazon river cruises are quickly becoming a popular “adventurous” mode of travel for river cruisers. It’s one of the best ways to see the world in comfort and cover a lot of ground.

    When considering your tour to the Peruvian Amazon rainforest, there are a few things to keep in mind. The high water season in Peru’s Amazon is from December through May. The low water season lasts from June through November. Rain is common throughout the year, but heaviest in December to May.

    You can visit the Peruvian Amazon at any time of year, but if you choose to go during a wet period, your chances of shore excursions could be limited, due to flooding and difficulty navigating through muddy paths. Mosquitos also love this time of year, and Peru is a Zika zone, so be very careful when traveling during wet weather. Wear lots of bug spray and wear long sleeves and pants.

    If you choose to take a Peru river cruise in the dry season (June through November), you will have much more opportunity to disembark and explore the jungle. However, some of the smaller creeks and byways that are navigable during the rainy season are now inaccessible to river boat vessels. So you won’t have the chance to explore “off the beaten path” (or river as the case may be) if you travel during this time of year.

    Birding Tours in Peru

    Peru is an extremely popular destination for birding, particularly in the Amazon. Home to nearly 2,000 separate species, including 120 rare species only found in Peru, it’s a birding enthusiasts dream destination.

    To see some of Peru’s incredible aviary creatures, plan a long birding tour where you can visit several habitat types, as well as increase your chances of seeing the rarer species. Some birding tours to Peru are over two weeks long, providing ample time to see the country and learn about the local wildlife and cultures.

    Take a birding tour to discover such elusive varieties as the predatory Black-Collared Hawk, the male Golden-Headed Manakin, with his oddly stark colors of gold and black, the prehistoric looking Hoatzin, which for laymen may be confused with a Quetzel. Of course you’ll see plenty of Amazonian Macaws, with their bright red, yellow, and blue feathers, and Toucans of which there are 40 different species.

    Food in Peru

    The local cuisine in Peru is generally excellent - combining elements from the coast (seafood), Andean (pre-Hispanic dishes), Amazonian (palm hearts and other exotic foods), and Spanish colonial influences. Adventurous eaters may even try a plate of Cuy, a Peruvian national dish centered around roasted Guinea pig.

    Ceviche is another classic national dish in Peru. This delectable concoction has been copied and interpreted all around the world, but finds it’s roots in Peru, where simplicity is what showcases the fresh, flavorful ingredients. Ceviche is traditionally made with cubed chunks of raw fish, marinated in citrus juice for up to three hours (during this process, the fish becomes “chemically cooked” so is not technically raw when it’s served), and finished with fresh lime. Some of the best ceviche in Peru can be found in the capital, Lima, where it is served with cold sweet potatoes or corn.

    Potatoes are a staple in Peruvian cuisine, as the country is home to nearly 2000 varieties. Whether you enjoy potatoes, stuffed, fried, boiled, sliced, sweet, hot or cold, you will find them in Peru. Peru is mostly a coastal nation, so another staple food item is seafood. Not only used in ceviche, as described above, but also made using many different regional methods, from stews to steamed.

    Cocktail enthusiasts will enjoy the history of Pisco that can be found throughout Peru. Originally concocted by Spanish settlers in the 16th century, this brandy like drink is made similar to wine. The other major country known for Pisco is Chile, and both countries put their own unique spin on the drink.

    Peru chooses to non dilute their offering. Chile is the older official producer of Pisco (official regions were declared in 1931 - 1991 in Peru), but Peru has certainly paved a way in Pisco production. Used in a lot of modern mixology, it’s a classic drink for travelers visiting Peru.

    The Language in Peru

    Peru is a multilingual country, the official language of which is Spanish, however many diverse native languages are used as well. Those that speak these languages are typically bilingual in Spanish. In the main tourist areas, such as Machu Picchu and Cusco, English is fairly widely spoken, however when you venture farther afield, you’ll have an easier time communicating in Spanish.

    While not a full blown dialect, Peruvian Spanish differs slightly from European Spanish. A result of native words creeping into everyday speech and local pronunciation differences.The most well known indigenous language is Quechua, many variations of which is spoken by the various Quechua peoples.

    It is significant in that it pre-dates the Inca Empire and is still spoken today, despite the Spanish conquest in the 1600s. Peru offers a dizzying array of options, Stride is here to guide you toward the best guided group tours to experience Peru’s dynamic sights, sounds, and flavors. Isn’t it time you said “Hola!” to Peru?

    Top Peru Travel Companies

    Things to Know Before You Go

    Peru Packing List

    Peru’s diverse landscape makes for a great travel experience, but also makes it a nightmare to pack. From the hot beaches, to the humid rainforests, to the freezing highlands — you have to be ready for every climate and temperature.

    Luckily, there are several ways you can avoid packing everything but the kitchen sink. In Cusco, there are several shops where you can buy gear. In some trekking shops, you can even rent gear like thick down jackets. 

    Overall, packing lists for Peru vary depending on your tour itinerary. As a general rule of thumb, pack layers so that you can adapt to any climate. Make sure to pack light as well, as most tours have a bag allowance for treks.

    Here are staple items you will need to pack for your trip to Peru:

    • Good athletic shoes for hiking: When hiking in Peru, you want to make sure that your shoes have good treading and have good ankle support. You may opt to buy hiking boots, but most travelers say that athletic shoes are good enough to trek in. Make sure you break in your shoes before traveling so that you don’t end up with blisters!
    • Thick wool socks: The highlands of Peru are quite frigid, so warm socks will be a lifesaver. These will save your feet during the cold weather treks and freezing nights.
    • Thermal leggings/pants
    • Thermal long-sleeve shirts
    • Hoodie
    • Down jacket
    • Rain jacket: The weather can be very unpredictable, so a rain jacket or poncho will help you stay protected from unforeseen rain.
    • Hat
    • Insect repellent: In higher altitudes, bugs are less common. As Machu Picchu’s elevation is lower, you should pack insect repellent. The same goes for when visiting the Amazon.
    • Sunscreen 

    Is Peru safe?

    Peru’s diverse landscape, itinerary, history attracts millions of tourists annually. Although it’s a popular destination, tourists may encounter issues in Peru.

    For starters, tourists may be targeted, as they are seen as wealthy. Therefore, theft, pickpocketing, mugging is common. 

    Be careful when trekking in Peru as well. Some routes are notorious for being dangerous, in terms of crime and lethal insects. Traveling with a reputable guided tour in Peru can protect you from these situations.

    Although there are several rumors about the dangers of traveling in Peru due to drug trafficking, the threat has declined in recent years. There hasn’t been an attack on tourist areas for almost two decades. More concern is raised in the northern areas of Peru, especially along the Colombian border. This area has had plenty of “Do Not Travel” notices due to drug trafficking and insurgent activities.

    With all this being said, you might be thinking twice about visiting Peru. However, this doesn’t mean that you should avoid this beautiful country! It has a lot more to offer than bandits, crime, and dangerous insects.

    To protect yourself from these dangers, there are some precautions you can take to ensure you travel safety. As with visiting any foreign country, it pays to be vigilant and be safe rather than sorry. With good judgement, research, and caution, you can avoid bad situations.

    Here are some tips to keep you secure when traveling in Peru:

    • Don’t wear flashy clothes and jewelry.
    • Don’t wander around at night, especially in cities.
    • Travel in groups.
    • Learn a little Spanish to help you get by.
    • Watch your drink to prevent spiking.
    • Keep your valuables at home/locked away in your hostel.
    • Avoid dodgy/deserted areas.
    • Avoid withdrawing from ATMs late at night, or from sketchy places to prevent fraud
    • Keep your credit card in sight when making purchases to prevent credit card fraud.
    • Exchange money at reputable agencies (eg. banks or money exchanges within hotels). This decreases the chance of receiving counterfeit bills, and being the target of crime.
    • Choose a reputable tour group.
    • Be vaccinated. Scroll down to learn more about vaccinations for Peru.
    • Get insured! You never know what misfortunes could happen during your trip.

    Tips for Adjusting to High Altitude

    Unfortunately, altitude sickness (known as soroche in Peru) can affect anyone regardless of age, gender, fitness level. However, those with lung or heart conditions are more likely to experience symptoms of altitude sickness (dizziness, nausea, headaches, vomiting, diarrhea or constipation, difficulty breathing, and heart racing).

    Typically, people experience altitude sickness at 8,000ft. As a result, some may experience discomfort in Machu Picchu, where the elevation is 7,972ft. The more concerning location is Cusco, where the altitude is 11,152ft.

    Here are some tips to adjust to high altitude:

    • Chill out for the first few days: Let your body adjust to the lower amount of oxygen intake.
    • Take deep breaths.
    • Avoid substances, such as alcohol: Drinking alcohol may increase your symptoms of altitude sickness.
    • Ascend slowly: Many flights land in Cusco. Some travelers recommend taking a trip to a lower region as soon as you land, and working your way back up to Cusco, so that your body can get used to the shift.
    • Eat well, especially high-carb foods.
    • Stay hydrated
    • Take a chill pill: Diamox can be taken 24 hours prior to your ascent to help prevent symptoms of altitude sickness.

    What Vaccines Do I Need for Peru?

    Vaccinations are probably the last thing you want to think about before traveling, but for Peru, preparations should be made well in advance. 

    Recommended vaccinations vary depending on your itinerary, so it’s best to consult your doctor beforehand. However, here are required and recommended vaccinations according to the Center for Disease Control.

    Routine/Required Vaccinations for Peru:

    For these vaccines, you may need a booster shot before you leave.

    • Measles, mumps, rubella (MMR)
    • Diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus (DPT)
    • Varicella (chickenpox)
    • Polio 
    • Flu shot

    Recommended Vaccinations:

    • Hepatitis A
    • Typhoid
    • Hepatitis B
    • Rabies
    • Yellow fever

    Other precautions:

    Since illnesses such as malaria, dengue, and yellow fever are spread through mosquito bites, make sure to protect yourself with repellent. There are no vaccinations for malaria and dengue, however you can take antimalarial pills.

    This is a good choice, especially if you are planning to explore the jungles of Peru in the summer.

    All Peru tours, river cruises, expedition cruises, and adventure trips. Find the best guided trips and expert planned vacation and holiday packages. Average rating of 4.8 for all Peru trips.

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