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Backpacking Peru

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Backpacking Peru

Peru is a travel goal for millions of backpackers. A country topographically plentiful, culturally abundant, and full of opportunites for unexpected exploits! Peru is immersed in the enigmas of the Incas and other prehistoric cultures. With beautiful landscapes and foreign mountain ways, Peru carries the fantasy of the backpacker far far away!It presents economical travel with memorable adventures from the Selva, an abundant region of subtropical uplands which is situated amid the rocky mountainous summits of the Andes and the jungles of eastern Peru and the mysterious dry lowland deserts.

Apart from a variety of marvelous Incan architecture, Peru also offers all the regular adventure sports, such as surfing, kayaking, horse-riding and deep sea fishing. There is a big social scene as well with plenty of bars, clubs and casinos in touristic parts mixed with the ancient culture that you still see today.

You need to spend a sufficient time in Peru to fully enjoy it. The country is big and it takes a while to explore. There is so much to see and do, if you have time I reccommend at least a couple of weeks.

  • Currency: Nuevo Sol = 100 centimos, $1= 3.27 s, 1 B.P.S=4.68 s, 1 euro=3.80
  • Language: Spanish and Quechua (the native language)
  • Emergency numbers: 011 or 5114

Peru Weather

This depends in what region you are in. Temperatures vary from sub tropical in the jungle areas in the east to moderate in the Andes. Night time in the mountains is very cold so make you have warm clothing or you can buy the lovely and cosy alpaca jumpers, fleeces, hats etc, which are so popular with the tourists. On the coast its summer from October to April, which is when the rainy season is in the mountains. The best time to visit the Andes is between May and September.
Inca Trail packages

 

 

Travel Safety Tips

Peru is not an awfully unsafe place, but you will hear some horror stories. You just need to be careful and aware. If you keep the following in mind you´ll be fine.

  • Keep your valuables out of sight. Don’t flash your cash around and keep jewelrey to a minimum. Money belts are handy if your pockets are unsecure. Just carry the amount of money that you need. Leave your passport at the hostel.
  • Be cautious with your camera. Don’t walk around with your camera around your neck. Be wise with who you pick to take a photo for you. (not someone who looks like they can run faster than you!)
  • Dress casually. Prevent unwanted attention by wearing plain clothes.
  • Use cash machines in broad daylight. For obvious reasons, it is safer to withdraw money in the day than late at night, preferably one inside a bank.
  • Only take official taxis. Very important. Official taxis are marked with digits 6 or 8 digits long with letters and numbers in big black letters. Try to make a mental note of the number.
  • Don’t walk around alone in the poorer areas. (especially with valuables)
  • Be social
  • Make the effort to talk to your fellow travellers. They want to make friends too!
  • Choose hostels with a kitchen and/or common area. This is the best opportunity for communicating with other backpackers.
  • Book a tour. This is a great chance to meet like minded people and have a great experience.

Accommodation

There are many inexpensive hostel in Peru. You don’t need to book in advance, unless you’re arriving late at night. If you are looking for economy, the hostels that are not in the guidebooks are less expensive. Go to the main plaza, ask some locals and walk around till you find one. A cheap hostel costs 20 soles or 30 for a double (more in Lima). If they ask for more you should always try and negotiate them down. This is normal and expected in Peru.

If you find yourself in the Sierra (mountains) in the winter (July, August), it will be cold! Try and get a small and cosy room, with hot water (always check!), buy some candles, use at least 3 blankets. There will be no heating in the inexpensive hostels.


Backpaking Adventure Tours – Peru

  • Inca Trail Tours
  • Sacred Valley Tours
  • Machu Picchu Tours
  • Maras, Moray and Salineras Tours
  • Chachapoyas Tours

A few more tips:

  • Don’t overpack.
  • Remember you will be carrying your baggage so just take the essentials. You can buy more stuff in Peru if you want. Its cheap and cooler to have local clothes.
  • Have clothes for all conditions. The Andes can be very cold and coastal and jungle regions hot, humid and sticky!
  • Travel in mid-range to top-end buses. They are far safer.
  • Get yourself a guidebook. You don’t have to stick to it religiously, but it can be useful if you don’t know anything about where you are.
  • Learn a little Spanish. You will have a much better and easier time if you know the basics.
  • Learn a bit about the history and culture. It will make your experience more interesting.
  • Take your time. There is so much to see and do in Peru. I reccommend at least 2 weeks.
  • Always be attentive to your environment. Most of the crime that happens is opportunistic and can be avoided. Be wary of over friendly stangers.
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