Peru

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Peru

  • Entry
  • Getting Around
  • Accommodation
  • Food And Health
  • Weather And Time To Go
  • Communications
  • Dangers And Considerations
  • Respecting Culture

  • Related Advice

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  • South America

    Area - 17,840,000 sq km

    Population - 385,742,554

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  • Peru
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  • South America Recommended Vaccinations

    Always consult your doctor before travelling - the information below is only a guide. Vaccination requirements can change.

    Routine Boosters (MMR, DPT and Polio).

    Hepatitis A.

    Hepatitis B (optional).

    Rabies (optional).

    Typhoid.

    Yellow Fever (tropical regions).



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    Backpacking Peru Need To Know

    Basics

      Language: Spanish
      Capital: Lima
      Currency: Nuevo Sol (PEN)
      Dial Code: 51
      Emergency Services Number:
      Police: 105, Ambulance: 117, Fire: 116
      Time Difference: GMT -5

    Places To Visit In Peru


    Entry

    Citizens of most countries (including all EU countries, The US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand) do not need a visa for stays of up 6 months.

    Your passport should be valid for the proposed duration of your stay. No additional period of validity beyond this is required.

    If arriving overland make sure you receive an entry stamp.

    For official information visit your home government travel bureau.

    Getting Around

    During the rainy season land, rock and mudslides can cause disruption to road and rail travel in mountain and jungle areas, including Cusco and the way to Machu Picchu.

    Always book taxi's in advance, rather than hailing from the street, as many are unlicensed.

    More detail is to come in this section, but you can read about general advice regarding Getting Around When You Get There


    Accommodation

    Peru has a wide variety of hostels and you should never have any problem finding one.

    The average price of a hostel is 25-50 PEN (£5-10) a night. Hotels can also be relatively cheap, but vary in quality.

    All hostels in Peru will provide linen and bathroom facilities. Usually there will be cooking and internet facilities as well as common and laundry rooms.

    Read more about Accommodation When You Get There and Living in Hostels

    Food And Health

    Food hygiene and safety in Peru is below acceptable standards. Use your instincts; if the place looks dirty, don't eat there; if your food isn't piping hot, don't eat it.

    Water is generally not safe to drink, so it is best to buy bottled or boil.

    Medical treatment can be expensive and is not always available in some parts of the country. Only very basic medical assistance is available at Machu Picchu. Make sure you have adequate travel health insurance and accessible funds to cover the cost of any medical treatment abroad and repatriation.

    Yellow fever is endemic in certain areas. Always contact your GP around 8 weeks before your trip to check whether you need any vaccinations or other preventive measures. Visit here for Recommended Vaccinations and read here for more about Travelling Health In General

    Weather & Time To Go

    In general, the rainy season in Peru runs from November to April. The climate on the coast is subtropical with very little rainfall. The Andes mountains observe a cool-to-cold climate, while the eastern lowlands are usually hot and rain is evenly distributed all year long.

    Communications

    Internet and wifi is widespread and is accessible in most hostels and hotels. International calling cards are also cheaply available.

    Dangers And Considerations

    Crime levels are high.

    Solo female travellers should take care at bus terminals and in taxis, as attacks have been reported.

    Thieves, pickpockets and scam artists commonly operate at country borders, and in cities and tourist areas. Pickpockets often work in gangs, some distracting you while the others go into your bags, so be alert and try not to get distracted around tourist attractions and cash points.

    Buses are sometimes held up and the passengers robbed. Passport theft is also common on inter-city buses. Keep your passport with you at all times during your bus journey and take particular care of valuables if you travel on a bus at night.

    You should carry identification with you at all times. You can carry a photocopy of the relevant pages of your passport and keep the original document in a safe place.

    If you’re hiking on the Inca Trail go with a guided group. To protect the trail there is a government fee and restrictions on numbers. During the high season (June–August) you should make reservations with a travel agency well in advance.

    Dangers constantly change. Always check with your foreign office (British Foreign Office webpage) or travel advice bureau for the latest information regarding your destinations safety.

    Read more about Safety And Security here

    Respecting Culture

    Homosexuality is legal in Peru but social attitudes are generally conservative.

    Chewing on coca leaves is common and part of the culture; coca leaves are not cocaine and they are legal. You can try them and they are quite effective against altitude sickness. However, bear in mind it can lead to you testing positive on drug tests for the next few weeks, especially coca leaf tea. You don't need to worry about getting drug tested in Latin America, but you may when entering certain countries in the Middle East or Asia, and possibly at a job interview when you return home.

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