Top 10 Peru Travel Tips

April 26, 2013

Top 10 Peru Travel Tips: Below is our extensive guide on the top Peru travel tips.

Getting the top backpacking Peru travel tips to point you in the right direction can always help! Here at the Only Peru Guide, our Peru travel experts had a quick brainstorming session and came up with their Top 10 backpacking Peru Travel Tips.

1) Don’t Be A Typical Tourist

Everyone knows Peru is famous for destinations such as Machu Picchu and Lake Titicaca (the highest navigable lake in the world). What many people don’t realise is that there is so much more to see and discover in Peru than just these typical tourist destinations (not that we’re telling you to skip out on them). Places such as the Paracas National Reserve (Peru’s largest protected reserve), the sand dunes of the only dessert oasis in South America, Huacachina, and the Secret Slave Tunnels in Chincha, used to traffic slaves in the 17th century are all found in this incredibly diverse country as well! Either Escape From Lima on one of their day trips to these incredible destinations or, hop off and spend as long as you want with your Peru Hop pass! Whatever way you decide to travel Peru and eventually get to Machu Picchu, make sure you stop off at these incredible destinations along the way as well as you’ll probably not get a chance to visit Peru again in your life!

Peru travel tips - man walking on a bridge in jungle

2) Make Sure You Know The Difference Between Real and Fake Money

Peru is one world largest producers of fake money, not only with the local currency but also with the most used tourist currencies such as the euro and dollar. For this reason, it is important to be able to learn how to tell the difference between real and fake money as sometimes, not so well known or recognised tour operators will mix in fake notes in your change when you book a tour.

Peru travel tips - fake peruvian soles/money

3) Make The Most of Your Budget by Eating The Lunch “Menu”

Peru has been named the World’s Leading Culinary Destination for six years in a row at the World Travel Awards. However, going to expensive restaurants to try these foods will drain your budget very quickly. Wherever you go in Peru, you will find small restaurants offering the lunch “menu”. This is a fixed priced menu where you will get to choose from a number of different options from for a starter and main. The restaurants are usually run by families and depending on where you are, you will find it for as cheap as $1-2 USD. This is a great option to get to experience Peru authentically by eating delicious local cuisine and making the most of your travel budget!

Peru Travel Tips - Ceviche, peruvian dish

4) Don’t Be Afraid To Barter A Bargain

According to just about all Peruvian vendors – foreigners are rich. Therefore, whatever you are about to purchase is more than likely inflated in price. There is often a price for locals and a price for tourists. Don’t buy the first thing you see, compare prices in a few places first. Once you are committed to buying don’t be afraid to barter the price down a little. Don’t go crazy, but test them to see if they are telling the truth.

Peru Travel Tips - Bargaining with a local at a store

5) Take Your Time!

ENTERTAINMENT TIP: If looking for fun at night, or to watch sports during the day, or even a taste of home, visit the Wild Rover Hostels Chain for great food, sports and beer! Entrance to their bars is free even for non-guests

Peru is known for being one of the best countries in the world to travel. With a never ending list of cultural and historical sights to visit and an incredibly diverse ecosystem to explore, Peru has something for everyone. Due to the variety of things to do, travellers sometimes feel overwhelmed with the amount of options they have. Although it can be tempting to try and see everything as quick as possible, but it’s worth keeping in mind that there is no way to see everything by rushing your trip! Our best advice is to try and spend a good amount of time in each destination and truly get to know it before moving on.

Peru travel tips - Man overlooking rainbow mountain

6) Bring Toiletries With You Everywhere

As amazing as a country Peru is, a lot of the time depending on where you go, you will find that the bathrooms are not always kept to the highest standards. Only more developed places or establishments will usually have toilet paper and soap readily available so make sure to keep some with you at all times for when the need arises. Another important thing to remember is that a lot of the toilets will get clogged up if you throw toilet paper in them and that you’re suppose dispose of them in bins.

Peru travel tips - Toilet Paper and soap

7) Get comfortable with the idea of travelling on buses

Although the budget airline industry in South America is slowly growing, the most used transport system by far is travelling by bus. Although these long distance journey’s can get tedious, they are the perfect opportunity to catch up on writing in your journal, do some reading or finding out information on your next destination.

Peru travel tips - Peru Hop bus

8) Agree upon service prices in advance

This is another good tip for saving money while traveling. It’s always smart to negotiate and clarify the price of the services you wish to purchase to avoid hidden charges. In particular, negotiating with a taxi driver what the final price will be before you even enter the vehicle is quite common in Peru.

Peru travel tips - Different currencies

9) Check The Weather

Peru has an incredibly diverse variety of ecosystems which all have different climates (30 out of the 32 possible climate types). Inside Peru, you will find that the land ranges from sandy coastal beaches to high mountainous lands, rainforests, jungles and deserts. Even if places seem close to each other on a map, they generally have very different climates. This is why it is important that you make sure to check the weather in your next destination to know what you’re heading into and prepare accordingly.

Peru travel tips - weather forecast

10) Do Your Research

There are many different transport options and tourist agencies in Peru. These range from the extremely overpriced luxurious options to extremely cheap options where safety becomes an issue. Make sure you research your different options before choosing an option for overland travel in Peru.You can purchase bus tickets and go from city to city to visit those places, but we recommend Peru Hop’s option of simply getting one bus pass and hopping on and off as you please. It’s more convenient and they have short cultural stops along their path giving you the chance to build strong friendships with travellers who are on a similar route to you.

We hope these 10 Peru travel tips have helped you prepare a little bit for your once-in-a-lifetime trip to Peru. If you have any other questions about how to get ready, just let us know in the comments below!

10 Tips For Backpacking Peru



Did you know - The Lima Walking Tour leaves from the Tourist Information Center at 799 Avenida Jose Larco in Miraflores every day at 10:15 am. Visit our Blog for more information!
  1. kathy

    I find your tips quite lighthearted but truthful and I am sure will be of a lot of use to travellers

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