Peru is an absolutely beautiful country that stands out from the crowds with its stunning scenery, diverse landscape and unique culture. In just one visit to Peru you can explore the Amazon jungle, visit the highest lake in the entire world, surf on the coast, hike famous mountains and tour the world heritage site of Machu Picchu.
If you are thinking this is a lot to hold in just one country- you'd be right! Peru is absolutely massive, and therefore it's important to plan your visit and prioritise what you want to see most. Here are some Must Know's about Peru to help you plan your next adventure!
When Is Best To Visit?
This greatly depends on what you want to see! If you are keen to head into the Amazon Jungle, the most popular months are between June and November as there is much less rainfall and therefore less chance of trails being closed or cold weather.
If you want to conquer the famous Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, you are best to visit in Peru's winter months, which are between June and August. During this period, the weather is dry and the weather is warm. You are also more likely to get blue skies and clear views from Machu Picchu!
However, bear in mind that the summer months in Peru will also be the most popular, and therefore the most expensive. If you are on a budget and looking to get the most our of your money, visit between December and March. You may experience colder weather and more rainfall, but it will be much more affordable!
What language do they speak?
Peru has three official languages- Quecha, Aymara and Spanish. However, Spanish is the most commonly spoken. The most common question that follows this is...do I need to speak Spanish? I would definitely recommend trying to get to grips with some basic Spanish before travelling to Peru, and having some translation apps downloaded on your phone.
What is the currency?
The currency is the nuevo sol (PEN). 1 PEN is about equal to 18p. You will easily be able to access ATM's in Peru, and in many places you can use your card to pay. However, I would advise to make sure you always have cash on you in case, as many smaller shops and restaurants will not take card.
How safe is Peru?
In recent years, Peru has largely improved on safety and is now viewed as a 'medium' safe country to travel. It is still important to be vigilant especially when in cities and keep an eye on your belongings as petty theft is common. It is also not advised to walk around alone at night.
Will I experience altitude?
There are many areas of Peru where you will experience altitude, including Cusco, Colca Canyon, Lake Titicaca and many others. The altitude can lead to altitude sickness, which occurs when your body is not getting enough oxygen. This can lead to headaches, feeling of dizziness, sickness, lack of appetite, and can be very dangerous. Whenever arriving in an area of high altitude, it is very important to give yourself a few days to rest and adjust. It's also super important to listen to your own body- altitude can affect everyone differently- if you are feeling unwell, make sure you seek medical advice.
So those are the most frequently asked questions I have been asked about Peru, and the ones that I was googling before coming! I really hope this was useful and feel free to read out to me on Instagram at @shedot.travels if you have any other questions!