Mostly known for the ancient town of Machu Picchu and the mysterious Nasca Lines, Peru offers plenty of other things for the visitors to experience. Colonial cities, unspoiled nature, plenty of trekking possibilities, lovely beaches, incredible history, great cuisine and warm people await the visitors to discover and indulge in the Peruvian culture.
Lima is the city where you’ll most likely arrive, particularly if you plan to fly here. It is connected direct to North America, South America and Europe , while connecting flights make it possible to arrive here easily from Asia and Oceania, too. Once in the country, you’ll most like choose the bus to get around (or in other places : the train, as that’s the only available means of transportation).
Arriving and Departing Peru
When arriving in Peru, tourists most likely use Lima’s Jorge ChÃ¡vez International Airport (LIM), the most important international hub in Peru.
Arriving and Departing Lima
Jorge ChÃ¡vez International Airport (LIM) is the most important airport serving Peru and a hub for the following airlines: LAN Peru, TACA Peru, Peruvian Airlines, Star Peru and LC Busre. It is located just 11 km from the historical city center, to which it’s connected by bus. It handles direct flights to from South America, North America and Europe.
Lima offers connections to all cities in Peru which are served by airports (17 of them having scheduled flights).
>>read more about Cheap flights to Lima
Getting around Peru
Peru is not a small country and you can get around by air or by land. While flights can be quite expensive, buses remain the cheapest option to get around Peru. In some cases, there are only trains available (such as Cusco to Aguas Calientes, the gateway into Machu Picchu).
From the Airport to the City Center
There are three international airports in Peru, serving Lima, Cusco and Arequipa. In Lima, you can catch the Express bus to the city center , while in Cusco and Arequipa the only option is the taxi.
From One City to Another
Driving in Peru
Driving can be a nice way to get to remote places , especially if the idea of spending too much time on a bus is not your cup of tea. But try to get introduced to driving in Peru outside the capital of Lima, which can be a nightmare to navigate.
>>Rent a car in Peru
The buses in Peru are operated by a variety of private companies. The competition keeps the fares down. The conditions vary from luxurious to downright dangerous (think old ex US school buses). However, since this is the only dependable means of transportation in Peru, buses run with regularity.
Traveling by train in Peru is spectacular and is an experience in itself. There are only three railways with 4 routes operating. In some cases, the train is the only way to get to a places (such as the Cusco to Aguas Calientes route, at the base of Machu Picchu).
Flying within Peru
Peru is served by plenty of domestic airports but only 17 of them have scheduled flights and , in most cases, the only flights available are to/from the capital of Lima. Flying in Peru is not very cheap, but some places can only be reached by plane.
Walking in Peru
Whether you choose to hike on a volcano, tackle the Inca Trail or explore the cities on foot, walking is definitely one of the best ways to see Peru. But even if you don’t plan to do a lot of hiking, you’ll most likely do a lot of walking in the Peruvian cities.
While you don’t need to pack bulky equipment, consider that the terrain is not flat so bring a very good pair of walking shoes. Even better, pack some hiking boots with good ankle support. Remember that you’ll be walking in high altitude so allow your body to adjust before planning any long walks.
In Lima , the best option is choosing the Metropolitano buses, which go through the entire capital. Tren ElÃ©ctrico is a new and limited service which aims to connect various areas in the capital.
In Cusco , taxis are very common but so are combis — cheap and reliable vans. But the center of Cusco is small enough to be tackled on foot.
In Arequipa , the only choice is walking. Bus tours are great for visiting the volcanoes. Otherwise you are left with using the taxis or renting a car.