Five Tips to Help You Prepare for your Trip to Peru ! By making a few easy preparations before departing for your journey to Peru, you can be assured a much more comfortable stay! The following tips have been (almost) life-savers for me… Buen Viaje!
- Book in advance!
Of course not everything needs to be planned in advance…but if you want to see one or more of Peru’s most famous and sought-after sites, you NEED to book beforehand! The best example of this is the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, but also a train tour to Machu Picchu should be booked before arrival, at least in high season. You don’t want to come all the way here just to be disappointed….. The Inca Trail needs to be booked with a travel agency in Cusco 4 to 6 months in advance in high season ( 1-3 months in mid and low season). This, because there is a limit of 500 entries per day, and this includes staff! If you want to trek to Machu Picchu but don´t have 4 to 6 months to plan ahead, you can always check out an alternative treks to Machu Picchu such as the Salkantay, Lares Valley or the ever-popular Inca Jungle Trek!
- Pack layers
Peru is a very diverse country with different climates and regions…the coast (la costa), the mountains (la sierra), and the jungle (la selva), and it offers many opportunities for hiking, climbing, and trekking in Peru. The best advice is to pack as light as possible but to make sure to have layers available! If you are high in elevation (for example Cusco or Puno) you will definitely want layers because the sun is very intense… but it can feel downright cold once you walk into the shade or inside a building! Also, these high elevation places tend to be extremely cold at night. In the jungle you will want light layers to protect yourself from the bugs…despite the heat.
- Bring Hand sanitizer/toilet paper
Unlike what we are accustomed to in North America and Europe, toilet paper and running water in Peruvian public bathrooms are not always guaranteed! As silly as it sounds, it’s a good idea to always have these things with you to save yourself from an uncomfortable situation…por si acaso! (just in case)
- Bring an adapter for electronics
In Peru we use 220 volts. If you are bringing electronics from the US, you will need a voltage converter and a plug adaptor. To make it simple, you can get a universal adaptor and converter kit…it’s a good investment and will come in very handy if you are a frequent traveler!
No matter where you go in Peru this is a great thing to have with you. It´s not always easy to find here, nor is it cheap, so bring a bottle or 2 of your favorite brand from home. If you are on the coast or in the jungle, you will feel the heat and know you should protect yourself with SPF, but if you are in the mountains and the weather feels cool, as it does in Cusco for instance, you may not realize that you need it at first. Trust us, you do! Apply sunscreen every morning as a preventative measure…when you are 2 miles above sea level, the sun is very likely far more intense than anything you are used to and you can all of a sudden find yourself uncomfortably sunburned!
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