Peru Travel Advice
As the South America travel specialists, we have all the tips to make your Peru holiday a successful one. From safety precautions to entry information and what to expect with transport and accommodation, here is our best Peru travel advice.
There are a few things every traveller needs to know before they step on the plane to Peru…
- Spanish and Quechua are the official languages of Peru, while English is spoken in the major tourist areas.
- Watch out for the mozzies in the Amazon! Pack light-coloured clothing – long trousers and long-sleeved shirts – and use mosquito repellents containing the compound DEET on exposed areas of skin. To avoid being kept up all night by the blood suckers, check if your lodge provides a mosquito net in your room.
- We recommend only drinking bottled water, never tap water – even in major hotels – and avoid drinks with ice. If you’re visiting or hiking in remote rural areas, boil your water or use water-purification tablets.
- Peru is very much a cash society. The official currency is the Nuevo Sol, although US dollars are accepted in many hotels, shops, restaurants and bars across Peru.
Travel visa for Peru
Australians visiting Peru as tourists for a period of less than six months do not require a visa. Your passport will need to be stamped on entry into Peru, even at land borders.
We recommend speaking with your GP about any vaccinations – diphtheria, tetanus, polio, typhus, hepatitis A/B and rabies – or health precautions – including malaria prevention – you should consider when travelling to Peru.
Yellow fever vaccination is highly recommended… and if you have travelled within Peru in the six days prior to returning to Australia, you will need to show your yellow fever vaccination certificate.
Is Peru Safe?
Peru today is a different place to what it was in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Given the important role tourism plays in strengthening the developing economy, much has been done to make it a safer place for tourists to visit.
There are a few precautions you should take when travelling to Peru to make your experience a safer one:
- Copy all important documents (passport, air tickets) and carry only copies with you.
- Leave your valuables and important documents such as passports, international flight tickets and jewellery at the hotel, if possible in the safe.
- In case there is only one safe in the reception, obtain a receipt with each item listed.
- If necessary, carry important documents and cash in a belt under your clothes.
- Keep an eye and a hand on your things at all times. Be especially cautious in crowded places, especially at touristy places such as in Lima and Cusco; rural areas are generally safe.
- Remember that you are subject to the laws of Peru, and it is your responsibility to familiarise yourself with these laws before leaving. Drug trafficking is a serious crime. The export of cultural or artistic items from the country is not permitted.
- Avoid walking alone in quiet areas or at night. Travel in a group if possible.
- If you happen to get into trouble with authorities, insist on seeing their identification.
- Check your change and check the banknotes and coins to make sure you have not received any counterfeit money. If necessary, ask for other change.
It is important that you bear in mind that Peru is an emerging country. You will not find flawless infrastructure and well organised traffic. Poverty and social inequality can be quite visible at times. However, Peruvians in general are very friendly and welcoming people, when treated with the due respect. Exercise patience and a cautious curiosity and you will have a very enjoyable trip to Peru.
Types of accommodation in Peru
The accommodation options in Peru are diverse and we usually like to mix it up to suit you!
You will find converted monasteries, rustic lodges, boutique hotels of all comfort levels and homestays.
In the Amazon there are treehouses and a range of lodges and cruises… and for the more adventurous at heart there is a unique cliff side hanging lodge in the Sacred Valley.
Getting around in Peru
When we plan itineraries to Peru for our travellers, we always build the transport methods and routes into the plan. There are bus and train options throughout the country, but with developing infrastructure, they can be difficult to navigate.
Taxis are a good option in the cities – but be mindful of local hustlers who simply want to pick up foreign travellers to rob them.
There are numerous taxi providers in Lima and other cities who offer reservations by telephone or hotel. These taxis are safer and drivers may understand some English.
Before we send you off on a Peru adventure, we will provide you with “Your Book” which includes all the travel tips and destination information you will need for a successful journey. Contact us to start planning your next holiday to Peru and beyond.