Here you can find all the information you should need as a guide to understand more about travel in Peru, including information on weather, visas, what to pack etc. If you need any further help or advice on anything about travel in Peru please just let us know.

lima weather chartWeather in Lima: Peru's capital city is situated in the coastal desert strip that stretches from south to north Peru. The weather here is dry all year round, with very minimal chance of rain. As Peru is in the southern hemisphere "winter", from June through to late September, corresponds to the cooler months but even during this time of year temperatures in Lima remain mild.
Cusco Weather ChartWeather in Cusco: The weather in Cusco is similar (although not identical) to the weather that can be expected at other destinations at altitude in Peru, including Arequipa, Lake Titicaca, and Machu Picchu. The dry season runs from late April to September, and this corresponds with bright sunny days, but also colder nights with temperatures close to zero.
Puerto Maldonado Weather ChartWeather in Puerto Maldonado and the Amazon Jungle: Puerto Maldonado is a jungle city near the Tambopata jungle region. Like any jungle city the weather is hot and humid year round, although the wetter months are from October to February. The wetter months can be the best time of year to visit the jungle to spot animals and birds, as the wildlife is more active this time of year.
Mancora Weather ChartWeather in Mancora: Mancora is in the north of Peru and is one of Peru's best and most famous beachside towns. Due to the proximity with the equator temperatures here remain high all year around, although if you are looking for a sunny beach holiday it is best to avoid travel during the wetter months of January to April.

The Peruvian currency is the “Nuevo Sol”, commonly referred to in Peru as "sol" or "soles", with the currency sign "S/.". One Nuevo Sol is divided into 100 centimos. The currency is currently available in notes with denominations of 10, 20, 50, 100 and S/.200; and in coins with denominations of 5, 2 and S/.1, and 50, 20 and 10 centimos.

American dollars are widely accepted in Peru, particularly in tourist regions and in most hotels, although they will not always be accepted in more rural locations.

If you wish to carry cash with you then we recommend you use Peruvian Soles rather than US dollars as Soles are more readily accepted. We advise against carrying large amounts of British pounds (GBP) or other currencies as they will not be accepted in shops and you will need to exchange the cash into Peruvian soles.

ATM’s are widely available and normally dispense both Nuevo Sol’s and US dollars.

Be aware of fake notes and avoid street vendors offering to exchange money. If you need to change money we recommend you only use official companies such as in airports, banks or in your hotel.

Most restaurants, hotels and other businesses in Peru will accept payment by Visa, Mastercard and American Express debit and credit cards, although check before you make your purchase. Inform your bank of the dates and destinations of your trip prior to travel. We recommend you save a copy of your credit card details and the international contact number to telephone in case your card is lost, stolen or damaged during your trip.

We highly recommend you visit a medical professional before your holiday and inform them of exactly when and where you will be travelling to make sure you are given the correct immunisations and / or medication for your trip. Yellow Fever injections are often recommended by travel health clinics particularly if you are visiting the Amazon jungle, and Malaria tablets are also usually advised for the jungle.

It is also important you carry with you any of your own medication you may require during your trip, and it is recommended you also carry some form of suitable medication to ease headaches and upset stomachs.

Be aware that parts of Peru are at altitude, including the popular regions of Lake Titicaca and Cusco. To reduce the symptoms of altitude sickness and to help you acclimatise as quickly as possible stay as hydrated as possible, avoid alcohol at least for the first few days at altitude, and try to avoid energetic activities. Although hundreds of thousands of people travel to Peru each year without issue altitude sickness is something that should be taken seriously.

Parts of Peru, particularly the Amazon regions, are malaria risk areas and therefore anti-malarial tablets are often recommended by medical health professionals. Seek advice from your local GP or travel health clinic.

The Zika virus has been reported in countries across South America, and if you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant we advise that you speak to your local GP and / or travel health clinic and seek professional medical advise before travelling.

The NHS travel website has further useful and helpful information:

We are not medical professionals and medication should only be taken following professional medical advice.

Spanish is the official language of Peru and we recommend you learn a few basic words before your trip.

Aymara, spoken in the Lake Titicaca region, and Quechua, spoken in the highlands and Andes regions, are both co-official traditional languages. Peru also has many other native languages and dialects.

English is relatively widely spoken although in some smaller restaurants and more rural areas it is not. All guides used by Go Andes speak English to an appropriate standard.

At the time of writing UK nationals with a British passport do not need to apply for a visa in advance of travel to Peru as tourist visas of a maximum stay of 90 days are issued upon arrival, however it is advisable to always check the current situation prior to travel. Some nationalities other than British will be required to apply for a visa in advance of travel, and we recommend you check with your local embassy before travelling.

Upon entry to Peru you will complete an Andean Immigration Card which will be stamped and returned to you, it is important you keep this document with your passport at all times as you will need to return it when you exit Peru. If you have lost this document you may be required to pay a fine.

Make sure your passport is valid for at least 6 months after the completion date of your trip. We also recommend you take a photocopy of the photo page of your passport.

Please note that in some instances we will make reservations for your holiday linked to your passport details, including things like flight bookings and the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, and for this reason it is important you do not change your passport or any details on your passport (including your name) prior to travelling. If you have any questions regarding this please just get in touch.

For all nationalities, including if you are travelling on a British passport, it is your responsibility to ensure you have the correct documentation to ensure you can enter Peru and any other country you will enter or transit through on your holiday.

Tap water in Peru is not sterilised and we recommend you only consume bottled or sterilised water and do not consume tap water. For similar reasons avoid ice in drinks or check that it has been prepared using bottled or sterilised water. We are supporters of Travelers Against Plastic and encourage the use of re-usable water bottles to reduce or eliminate the impact of plastic bottle waste across the planet.

Peru’s gastronomy and cuisine has recently been earning a fabulous reputation as one of the world's finest, and Peru has won the distinguished "World's Leading Culinary Destination" award an unprecedented 5 times in a row from 2012 to 2016. Suddenly, and deservedly, everyone is talking about Peruvian food.

Peru's cuisine is eclectic and varies across the geographic regions - the coastal region including Lima is home to fantastic sea-food dishes like ceviche, the Andes mountains favour roasted meats and stews, while the Amazon regions are home to delicious river fish and tropical fruits. Criolla is the name given to the traditional Peruvian style of cooking (which usually involve meats, particularly chicken or sea food, blended with Peruvian aji chillies, lime juice and red onions and served over rice or potato), however that just skims the surface as the variety, beauty and complexity of the food and flavours any traveller to Peru will be able to experience.

Lima is a global culinary giant, and the Miraflores and San Isidro districts contains some of the finest restaurants in the world, so this is a great place to splash out on a more luxurious meal to savour the finest flavours of Latin America with ceviche, sea food and the famous "Pisco Sour" cocktail being Lima highlights. The Miraflores district of Lima is packed full of a wide variety of restaurants serving a variety of foods at a variety of budgets.

Cusco's central old-town region is also packed with restaurants and this is an excellent location to taste the flavours of the Andes, with local ingredients including the Peruvian potato, and roasted meats including beef and chicken, but also guinea pig and alpaca.

Arequipa is famous in Peru for its fine cuisine and, like Cusco, has a range of good restaurant options near the main central Plaza de Armas. One popular dish in this region is Rocoto Relleno which consists of large red chillies stuffed with spiced meat and cheese then roasted in an oven.

In the less touristy or more remote regions of Peru, such as the rural areas of Northern Peru, western or international foods are less common and in these locations you will have the opportunity to experience the real flavours and typical dishes of Peru.

We can assist with restaurant reservations or recommendations if required.

Vegetarian food is not as advanced in South America as it is in Europe or North America, although options for vegetarians are improving particularly in the bigger cities such as Lima and Cusco. Most restaurants will have at least one or two vegetarian options which will include things like potato salads and roasted vegetables, and buffets will include vegetarian options as well as selections of fruit and vegetables.

Never travel without suitable travel insurance. Suitable and appropriate travel insurance is a requirement of our Booking Terms and Conditions and it is your responsibility to ensure you have travel insurance applicable to your personal circumstances and holiday. Advise your insurance company of any pre-existing medical conditions and ensure you are covered for all activities included within your trip, such as the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu.

We recommend you take a copy of you insurance policy and a copy of your policy and terms and conditions with you on your holiday.

We are able to provide the contact details of a Travel Insurance company if required.

The most important things to pack are your passport (we also recommend you take a photocopy of the relevant pages), money, suitable luggage including a day-sack, and your flight e-tickets. Of course we also recommend you take a camera to capture your memories, with a charger and suitable memory cards.

Peru straddles three main geographic regions: the coast, the Andes and the Amazon, so depending on which region you are visiting it is important you take a variety of clothing. In the coastal regions it can get warm and sunny so trainers, t-shirt and shorts or trousers are fine. In the Andes regions such as Cusco and Lake Titicaca the temperatures during the day can get hot and sunny whereas the nights are bitterly cold and warm clothing, hat, gloves and scarves are recommended. The jungle region is hot and humid with a frequent chance of rain so waterproofs and rain ponchos are required, and long-sleeved lightweight trousers and shirts are advisable to reduce the risk of insect bites.

Other items we recommend you pack include a suitable personal first aid kit, binoculars, a torch with batteries, an electricity adaptor (plugs are flat 2-pin, and a typical international plug converter is usually suitable), toilet paper (carry a small amount with you at all times on your trip as some restaurants and cafes in South America don't always provide toilet paper), a travel guide book, strong sun lotion (the sun can be very harsh particularly in the highland regions), sun hat and sun glasses, insect repellent, plastic bags (to keep things dry), earplugs, strong insect repellent, a lightweight towel, toiletries, and an alarm clock.

When you book we provide you with a full packing list in our Welcome Pack.

South America is a relatively safe continent and the vast majority of people that visit South America travel without problems. However South America does have lower standards of health and safety than those in some countries, and it is a poorer continent than some parts in the world and opportunistic crime can occur, so an element of common sense is required to reduce the chances of you having a problem. Always stay within tourist areas and try not to stroll along quiet streets or away from the tourist areas of towns, particularly at night. Also avoid carrying large amounts of money with you, only carry what you need for that particular day, and ensure money and other valuables is left in the safety deposit boxes in your hotel. Keep your personal possessions you have with you, such as your bag or camera, on your person at all times and avoid leaving them on seats or under tables at restaurants. There are many unregulated taxis in Peru so if you want or need to travel by taxi always ask your hotel to arrange an official taxi for you.

Tipping in Restaurants: If you feel you have had a good meal or the service has been particularly good and/or friendly, although Peruvian people would not always tip as a general rule, tipping is becoming more common and is welcomed. A tip of around S/.5 to S/.20 depending on cost of meal and size of group is perfectly appropriate.

Tipping Tour Guides: Tipping guides is not mandatory so never feel obliged to tip, however tipping guides is common across South America. You should only consider tipping your guide if you feel they deserve it and did a good job as your guide, were engaging, spoke clearly, were passionate and knowledgeable etc. For a typical half-day tour a tip of around S/.10 or S/.20 per person is common, or pro rata depending on the length of your tour or excursion.

Tipping on the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu: Tipping is very common on the Inca Trail (and other treks) to reward the guides, porters and chefs for their very hard work ensuring you have an enjoyable and fantastic experience. They wake early to prepare food for you, prepare camp and put up all tents, and run ahead to ensure they have prepared your lunch and meals on time. Our recommendation is to tip a total of around S/.200-S/.300 per trekker which is usually pooled together with other members of your trekking group and shared equally between the guides, porters and chefs. Often it is common for the guide to be given a little extra tip.

Tipping is optional so you should never feel obliged to tip.

Compared to travel in Europe or North America travelling in Peru is relatively cost-effective and good value. In our holidays all excursions, accommodation, transfers and domestic travel including flights are all included, so really the only additional costs you will incur when in Peru will be for things like any drinks or meals that are not included, tips, and other costs such as souvenirs.

We include breakfast for you every day, and some excursions also include other meals such as lunch and an evening meal so check your itinerary to see what meals you have included. Restaurants cater for all budgets from high-end fine-dining to cheap street food, but as a guide to eat in moderate restaurant for lunch or dinner will cost roughly S/.20-S/.40 per person (£5-£10) depending on location and how much you order. Restaurants in Lima and Cusco are more expensive than in other parts of Peru. Alcohol is additional, and the average price of a bottle of beer is around S/.10-S/.15 with good wine relatively expensive. The famous world-renowned restaurants in Peru's capital charge substantially more and you can pay over US$100 per person for a two-course meal with wine in the more famous restaurants.

Unfortunately not all airlines operate the same luggage requirement standards, so it is difficult for us to specifically advise what the luggage allowance will be for your holiday.

Typical luggage allowance for international flights is 20kg or 23kg depending on your airline, and this can be confirmed by checking the relevant airlines website. Please bear in mind that your holiday may involve a number of flights with a number of airlines, including domestic flights within South America, so it is important you comply with the airline that has the lightest requirements to avoid issues. Some domestic airlines within South America do have notably lower luggage requirements (as low as 15kg for check-in luggage) so it is advisable to check before travelling to avoid having to pay fares at the airports. Your airline will be listed on your booking confirmation documentation, and if you need assistance with this please let us know. 

It is quite common for tourists to shop for souvenirs or clothing in places like Lima and Cusco where there are a range of excellent artesan crafts markets, so we recommend you travel with luggage below the maximum requirement if you intend to shop for souvenirs to ensure the additional weight will not cause you an issue.

The information on this page is intended as a helpful guide only. If you have any further questions regarding Peru please contact us - we are always more than willing to help.