Peru

From Halal Explorer

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Peru (Perú) is without a doubt one of the most captivating countries in South America. Home of the epic lost Inca fortress of Machu Picchu and the mind-blowing Nazca Lines, this country's unique past awakens the adventurer in travellers of all sorts. Its awe-inspiring scenery varies from the wild Amazon jungles to vast coastal deserts and the icy peaks of the Andes. Peru hosts a biodiversity rarely seen within the limits of a single country, with a list of spectacular wildlife far beyond the well-known llamas and circling condors. On top of all that, Peru's friendly, multi-ethnic people are a cultural treasure on their own. The enchanting mix of dozens of distinct indigenous groups and mestizos, all with their own colourful traditions and food delicacies, is an encounter you won't easily forget.

In short, this is a country of unimaginable extremes where choosing your trip destinations may prove a true challenge. Whether you decide to go off the beaten track, follow in the footsteps of thousands of visitors before you who took the Gringo Trail along some of the best highlights, or go experience the jungle through a relaxing multiple-day Amazon boat trip - Peru is likely to amaze you in everything you do.

Contents

An Introduction to the regions of Peru

Other Muslim Friendly Cities in Peru

Other Muslim Friendly Destinations in Peru

023 Uros Islands of Reeds Lake Titicaca Peru 3074 (15181518852)

  • Chan Chan — impressive set of ruins of an ancient Chimor mud city, and a UNESCO World Heritage site
  • Chavín de Huántar — UNESCO World Heritage Site from the pre-Incan Chavin culture of around 900 BC
  • Huascarán National Park — high mountain park in Cordillera Blanca range
  • Lake Titicaca — considered to be the highest commercially navigable body of water in the world
  • Machu Picchu — this UNESCO World Heritage site is one of the most familiar symbols of the Incan Empire, and is one of the most famous and spectacular sets of ruins in the world
  • Manú National Park — one of the most diverse areas in Peru
  • Nazca lines — world-famous for its geometrical figures and giant drawings in the desert sand
  • Paracas National Reservation — a popular nature reserve on the Southern Coast
  • Río Abiseo National Park
  • Máncora — small beach town with the best beaches and great surf, turns into a real party town on weekends and holidays

Masjids Peru

The Muslim community in Peru is relatively small, and the number of masjids (mosques) is limited. However, there are some notable Islamic centers and places of worship. Here are a few confirmed masjids in Peru:

Mezquita Bab ul Islam – Lima

Mezquita Bab ul Islam is the most well-known mosque in Lima, serving as the main Islamic center in the capital. It is located in the Jesús María district and provides a place for daily prayers, Friday prayers (Jumu'ah), and other religious activities. The mosque also serves as a cultural center, offering educational programs and community events.

Asociación Islámica del Perú – Lima

The Asociación Islámica del Perú is another significant Islamic center located in Lima. It is situated in the Villa El Salvador district and serves the local Muslim community by providing religious services, educational programs, and social activities. This center plays an essential role in fostering a sense of community among Muslims in the area.

Islamic Cultural Center of Peru – San Juan de Miraflores

Located in the San Juan de Miraflores district of Lima, the Islamic Cultural Center of Peru (Centro Cultural Islámico del Perú) is a place of worship and cultural exchange. The center offers daily prayers, religious classes, and various cultural events to promote a better understanding of Islam among the broader Peruvian society.

Mezquita As-Salam – Tacna

In the southern city of Tacna, Mezquita As-Salam serves the local Muslim population. Although smaller in size compared to the mosques in Lima, it provides a crucial space for worship, community gatherings, and educational activities.

Mosque in Arequipa

Arequipa, another major city in Peru, also has a small mosque serving the local Muslim community. This mosque provides a space for prayers and community activities, although detailed information about its name and specific location might not be as widely known.

These masjids and Islamic centers are important for the Muslim community in Peru, offering not only a place for worship but also for cultural and educational activities. They help maintain and promote Islamic traditions and foster a sense of community among Muslims living in Peru.

Peru Halal Explorer

Despite 23.9% (2023) of the population (mostly Amerindians in rural areas) living under the poverty line, most Peruvians are nationalists and will talk with love and pride about their country. For many of them government, police and political affairs may be distrusted and criticized, as corruption and scandals are all around. However, that is not what makes up their beloved state of Peru. It's the rich natural resources and strong history as the centre of the ancient pre-Inca cultures, Inca Empire, and later colonial Spanish colony that inspire their nationalist sentiments.

You'll often encounter the term gringo, which used to refer to all white people who don't speak Spanish. Now, many people use it for Americans or American look-alikes only, but it's typically not meant to offend. Peruvians will not hesitate to greet you with "¡Hola, gringo!", especially if you're blond.

As in many South American countries, efficiency or punctuality aren't among Peru's many qualities. Go with the flow and don't expect things to be exactly on time or precisely as planned. Take into account that outside of the main tourist spots people will often not speak English, and (trying to be helpful) might give wrong or inexact advice. For some general advice, have a look at our tips for travel in developing countries.

Electricity

Electricity in Peru is 220 Volts and 60 Hertz. Exceptions are Talara, where a mixture of 110 V, 60 Hz and 220 V, 60 Hz is used, and Arequipa with 220 V, 50 Hz.

Two types of electrical outlets are used: one accepts two-pronged plugs with flat, parallel blades and the other one accepts plugs with two round prongs. Many outlets accept both. Grounded outlets exist but are uncommon. If you want to use a 110 V device, make sure to check if it can take 220 V, as you'll otherwise risk breaking your equipment. If not, bring a power adapter. It's not recommended to adapt a three-pin plug for use in a two-pin outlet.

Time zone

Peru Time (PET) is 5 hours behind Coordinated Universal Time (UTC/GMT). There's no daylight saving time.

History of Peru

Peru's oldest complex society called the Norte Chico civilization flourished in 3,000 BC. Early developments were followed by ancient cultures such as Cupisnique, Chavin, Paracas, Mochica, Nazca, Wari and Chimu. In the 15th century and the Incas emerged, becoming the largest civilized empire in Pre-Columbian America. The Spanish conquistadores conquered the Incan Empire in the 16th century, but while they wiped out the aristocracy and the peasantry, who spoke Quechua and Aymara, are very much alive today in Peru and neighboring Andean countries.

Travel as a Muslim to Peru

Visa policy of Peru

Visas

Tourists from North America, Australia, Hong Kong, Japan, Thailand, Taiwan and the European Union receive a visa upon arrival for up to 180 days. Chinese (including Macau) and India citizens holding US, UK, Canada, Australia, Schengen countries' visas or permanent residence receive a visa upon arrival for up to 180 days.

When entering the nation, you need to pass the immigration office (inmigración). There you get a stamp in your passport that states the number of days you are allowed to stay (usually 180 days). You can no longer get an extension, so make sure that you ask for the amount of time you think you'll need. When those 180 days are up and you would like to stay for longer, you can either cross the border to a neighbouring country (Ecuador, Colombia, Brazil, Bolivia or Chile) and return the next day and obtain another 180 days or simply overstay and pay the fine when you exit. The overstay fine is US$1 per day overage, so if you stay 30 days longer it's US$30. Many people do this, since it's much cheaper than leaving the nation and returning.

You will receive an extra official paper to be kept in the passport (make sure you don't lose it!). When leaving, you need to visit the emigration office (migración), where you get the exit stamp. Inmigración and migración are found on all border crossing-points. Travelling to and from neighboring countries by land is no problem.

Buy a Flight ticket to and from Peru

Star_Peru_Airlines_Lima_Airport_Peru

The capital city of Lima has Jorge Chávez International Airport (IATA Flight Code: LIM) with frequent Flights to/from all over the world. The major airlines at Lima's Jorge Chávez International Airport are Air Canada, Aeromexico, Aerolineas Argentinas, American Airlines, Avianca, Copa, Delta, Latam (formerly LAN & TAM Airlines), Gol, Iberia, Copa Airlines, United Airlines, Viva Colombia among others. There are non-stop Flights to Lima from Antofagasta, Sao Paulo, Bogota, Caracas, Santiago, La Paz, Sucre, Guayaquil, Quito, Buenos Aires, Saltos, Rosario, etc., in South America; from Toronto in Canada with Air Canada; and from several cities in the U.S. with American, Delta, United, Spirit and Jetblue. There are five additional airlines that offer non-stop service to Europe. Travellers from Oceania or Asia usually connect through Los Angeles (non-U.S.-citizen have to pass immigration even for transfer, consuming 1-2 hours - so ensure your stop-over is long enough!) or through Santiago de Chile.

The city of Cuzco has direct connecting Flights to La Paz, Bolivia with Peruvian Airlines and Amaszonas and to Bogota with Avianca Perú.

For example, Iberia flies directly from Madrid to Lima and the trip lasting around 13 hours. However Latam and KLM-Airline flights are much better in quality. Latam and Iberia often fly in code share mode (1 plane, 2 flight codes) meaning if you are on a Latam flight, you may have to check in at Iberia service desk or the opposite way, sometimes they send you from one to the next and back, so just queue at the shorter service desk.

There is an internal flight tax, around US$6, same conditions as the international one.

When booking domestic flights, Peruvian travel agencies may claim they can get you your plane tickets for the "Peruvian price" for a fee of about US$20. Latam abolished differential pricing in late 2017, however their website does not allow holders of foreign credit cards to buy the cheapest ticket class. You can purchase flights online. The same for Avianca or LC Perú.

Make sure to confirm your ticket 72 hours in advance, as you'll risk being bumped off your flight if you don't. Most travel agencies can do it for you, if you want.

Chavez airport is in a dangerous neighborhood that means you should avoid using random taxi service. If travelling to or from Lima Airport, it is strongly recommended to use the luxury Airport Express Lima bus to get to or from your hotel, or to book and pay for your taxi at one of the taxi company desks inside the arrivals area. The bus is cheaper than a taxi for solo travellers, has no baggage limit and has free Wi-Fi and USB chargers onboard.

From Ecuador

As Ecuador neighbors Peru to the north, it is easy to find affordable flights connecting Guayaquil and Quito to Lima, (the hub for inner cities of Peru). Or you can travel to Piura or Tumbes by bus and take a flight to Lima.

Travel on a Bus in Peru

There are international buses connecting Peru to the neighboring countries of Bolivia, Ecuador, Chile and Colombia. There are additional connections to as far as Buenos Aires, Argentina and Sao Paulo, Brazil from Lima via Tacna. The following bus companies offer international connections into and out of Peru:

  • Peru Hop - Lima Office: Centro Comercial "Torre Larco" Av. Larco 812 Oficina 206. Miraflores Lima ☎ +51 1 2422140 | Opening Hours: 09:30-19:00 - Peru Hop is a hop-on, hop-off bus tour offering connection between Cusco and La Paz at a cost of US$49. Other passes along this route are available in both directions. Every bus is monitored by GPS system and offers on-board bilingual assistance on all passes.
  • Caracol SA - (ticket office) Av. Brasil 487, Lima 15046 ☎ +51 1 431-1400 - Booking agent for Veloz de Norte (Argentina); Transportes de Tas Choapa y Tur Bus (Chile); Expreso Bolivariano (Colombia); Rutas de América (Ecuador and Venezuela) and La Preferida (Bolivia)
  • Civa/Excluciva - Paseo de la República 575, La Victoria Corner of Paseo de la República & Av 28 de Julio ☎ +51 1 481-1111 - Offer connections to Lima via Tumbes and Trujillo only from Guayaquil.
  • Rapidos de Chile, Andesmar | Gran Terminal Terrestre de Norte, Agencia L-22 ☎ +51 923 421 378 - Chilean subsidiary of the Argentinian company Andesmar, which includes "Rapidos" brand from Lima to Santiago de Chile.

Book a Halal Cruise or Boat Tour in Peru

The city of Iquitos in the Amazonas region has connections by boat to Leticia in Colombia and Tabatinga in Brazil (about 10 hours). There are also somewhat expensive cruceros on the Amazon River to enjoy the magnificence of the Peruvian-Brazilian jungle.

How to get around in Peru

Times and distances

Almost all major tourist destinations outside Lima are between one and one and a half hours by plane from the capital. Flying is the most convenient way for getting around Peru. For example, from Lima to Zorritos in Tumbes (beautiful beach with modern resorts) and the bus travel duration is 21 hours.

In cities and around

Combi arequipeña

Inside the cities and there is usually no problem getting around on city buses or taxis. Buses cost S/0.70-1.50 ([[#Money|soles) inside a city, taxis S/7-8 in Lima, normally less in other cities. "Taxi" does not necessarily mean a car; the term also refers to bicycles, motor rickshaws, and motor bikes for hire. Taxis are divided between "formal" taxis, painted and marked as such and have a sticker with SOAT, and informal ones, that are just cars with a windshield sticker that says "Taxi". The last ones are better left to the local residents, especially if you don't speak Spanish. Apart from the more upscale radio taxi (also the more expensive ones) and the fare is not fixed or metered, but it is negotiated with the driver before getting into the vehicle. Ask at your hotel or hostal about the rate you may expect to pay to ride to a specific location to have a point of reference. Tipping is not trainingd in taxis.

"Micros" (from microbús), "combis" and "coasters" they have bus stops but might also stop in the middle of the road. The direction is shown by boards in the windscreen or painted on the side. If you want to take a bus, just signal the driver to stop. If the bus is not completely overfilled (and sometimes when it is, too), it will stop to pick you up. During the ride and the ticket collector will ask you for the fee or, if there is not a ticket collector, you pay the driver when you get off. The latter is more common when taking longer trips where most people are going to the last stop, for example from Ollantaytambo to Urubamba. If you want to exit, you should press the button or just say loudly "¡Baja paradero!" or just ¡Bajo! (BAH-ho), and the driver will stop at the next stop (paradero). They are cramped and dirty, and not helpful unless in small towns or during off peak hours. They also stop in the middle of the road, so be careful when getting down.

Micros are very common but known for being quite dangerous, and different government programs are trying to reduce the number of micros. It is advised to not take a micro.

Buy a Flight ticket to and from Peru

Because of the distances involved and the conditions of the roads in some remote locales (or lack of) it may be better to fly, which most people do, especially in traveling between Lima and Cuzco. To some places such as Iquitos flying is the only way feasible due to the lack of roads and limited number (or the lack) of river boats plying the waters to get there. The following airlines offer domestic service within Peru:

  • Avianca Peru - formerly Taca Peru - The other major carrier offering both domestic and international services to other parts of South America. International Flights to/from North America typically connect through El Salvador, Colombia or Costa Rica and to/from Europe via Avianca Colombia.
  • Latam - LAN Peru | (Miraflores Sales office) Av. José Pardo 513-Miraflores; ☎ +51 1 213-8200 - Closest thing to a 'national legacy' carrier with domestic and international services to other parts of South America and beyond.

The following are smaller carriers that operate mainly within Peru:

  • LC Peru - formerly LC Busre - (Miraflores Lima sales office) Av. Jose Pardo 269 - Miraflores ☎ +51 1 204-1313
  • Movil Air - ☎ +51 1 716-8000 - Flies mainly between the northern cities of Chachapoyas, Chiclayo, Iquitos, Tarapoto and Trujillo in smaller turboprop aircraft. Plans are underway to include additional destinations. Affiliate of Movil Tours bus lines.
  • Peruvian Airlines - (Mega Plaza Sales office) Av. Alfredo Mendiola 3698, Mega Plaza Shopping Center - 2° nivel; (Miraflores Sales office) Av. Jose Pardo 495 Miraflores ☎ +51 1 716-6000
  • Star Peru - ☎ +51 1 705-9000
  • Viva Air Perú - ☎ +51 1 705-0107 (Lima Call Center) 080078200 - An affiliate of Viva Colombia to operate domestic flights within Perú and, at times, with fair prices.

Most of the airlines operate on a hub-and-spoke system via Lima rather than point-to-point. So to get from one city such as Iquitos to Cusco, you may fly to Lima to change planes, even if Lima is in a different direction between the cities you are travelling to and from. Furthermore and the ticketing systems may not offer through ticketing so you may have to book two separate tickets to get to where you're going. For example, if you want to travel from Iquitos to Cusco there may be no tickets available at anytime. But, if you book one ticket to Lima and another to Cusco with the same or different airline more options become available. Just be sure to allow yourself enough time (at least 2 hr) between arrival from Iquitos and departure to Cusco, especially if travelling on two different airlines to avoid missing flights. Some airlines also offer direct connecting flights without flying through Lima such as between Arequipa and Cusco.

Take care when using online flight pricing systems as some prices shown might have the qualification “For residents only”. These flights can still be used by non-residents but the ticket prices are higher.

Travel on a Bus in Peru

Cusco - Monumento Pachacútec - panoramio

Some primary streets, especially along the coastal strip, are paved, but there are still a lot of dirt roads in very poor condition. In the rainy season, landslides may block even major roads.

Inter-city travel is mostly by bus, and some cities have train connections. In contrast to colectivos, buses, and of course trains, start from fixed points, either a central bus terminal (referred to as Terminal Terrestre or Terrapuerto) or the bus companies have their own terminals in different locations. It is a good idea to buy your ticket one day in advance so that you can be relatively sure of finding a seat. If you come directly before the bus leaves, you risk finding that there are no more seats available. In most bus terminals you need to buy a separate departure tax of S/1-1.5.

If you are taller than 1.80m/5 ft 11 in, you will most likely be uncomfortable on the ride since the seats are much tighter than in Europe or some parts of North America. In this case, you can try to get the middle seat in the rear, but on dirt roads the rear swings heavily. In older buses and the seats in the first row are the best, but many buses have a driver cabin separated from the rest of the bus so that you look an a dark screen or a curtain rather than out the front windshield. In older buses, you can get one or two seats beside the driver, which gives you a good view of the passing landscape.

First-class express buses, complete with video, checked luggage and even meal service, travel between major cities, but remember to bring ear plugs as the video on these buses may be played extra-loud for the majority of the trip. You may need to present a passport to purchase a ticket.

Make sure that your luggage is rainproof since it is often transported on the roof of the bus when travelling in the Andes.

Avoid bus companies that allow travellers to get into the bus from alongside the road, outside the official stations. They are normally badly managed and can be dangerous, due both to unsafe driving trainings and/or to highway robberies, which are unfortunately not uncommon. This should be heeded especially by female travellers going on their own or anybody traveling overnight. There are many shoddy bus services in Peru, and it's best to go with one of the major companies such as Cruz del Sur, Oltursa or others. Get information at the hotel, hostel or tourist information booth before catching a ride. The following are the major bus companies traveling around through much of the nation, that are more reliable (addresses given are their Lima terminal in/around San Isidro and La Victoria):

  • Peru Hop - Lima Office: Centro Comercial "Torre Larco" Av. Larco 812 Oficina 206. Miraflores Lima ☎ +51 1 2422140 | Opening Hours: 09:30-19:00 - Peru Hop is a hop-on, hop-off bus tour. Peru Hop allow you to stop along the way from Lima to Cusco at Paracas, Huacachina, Nazca, Arequipa, and Puno. Other stops at interesting places are included, and optional tours are available. Pick-up from and drop-off at your hostel or hotel, and discounts at many Muslim friendly hotels and resorts are provided. Buses generally run daily, allowing you to spend as much or little time at each stop as you want. Lima-Cusco costs US$179-199, and Cusco-La Paz costs US$59. Other passes along this route are available in both directions. Every bus is monitored by GPS system and offers on-board bilingual assistance on all passes. Many routes stop completely late Jan through February due to weather
  • Civa/Excluciva - Paseo de la República 575, La Victoria Corner of Paseo de la República & Av 28 de Julio ☎ +51 1 481-1111 - They also have another terminal for their ' Excluciva]' brand at Javier Prado Este #1155 .
  • Cromotex - Av. Paseo de la Republica nro. 659, La Victoria ☎ +51 1 424-7575 - Travels between Lima, Arequipa, Tacna, Cusco and Trujillo. They also have another Lima terminal at Av. Nicolás de Arriola nro. 898 urb. Santa Catalina, La Victoria.
  • Cruz del Sur - Av Javier Prado Este 1109, La VictoriaJavier Prado Este & Nicolás Arriola in La Victoria ☎ +51 1 311-5050, +51 1 431-5125 72-0444 (domestic), 0801-1111 (domestic) - Serves Arequipa, Ica, Cuzco, Puno, Chiclayo, Trujillo, Pisco, Arequipa, Tacna, Cuzco, La Paz, Santiago, Buenos Aires, Cali, Nazca, Guayaquil, Quito, Bogotá and Máncora.
  • Transportes Flores - Paseo de La Republica 627 & 688, La Victoria Paseo de La Republica & Av 28 de Julio ☎ +51 1 332-1212, +51 1 424-0888 - They also have another station at 28 de Julio No 1246.
  • ITTSA - Av. Paseo de la República 809 ☎ +51 956 487-989 - Goes from Lima only to Chimbote, Chiclayo, Piura, Sullana, Talara and Trujillo in the northern regions of the nation
  • Movil Tours - Paseo de la Republica 749, La Victoria Frente al Estadio Nacional. Front of the National Stadium ☎ +51 1 716-8000 - They also have another station nearby at Javier Prado Este 1093, La Victoria in front of the Clinica Ricardo Palma & next to a Kia vehicle dealership.
  • Oltursa - Av. Aramburú 1160, San Isidro Southeast of the intersection Av Republica de Panama next to the Derco Center vehicle dealership. ☎ +51 1 708-5000
  • Ormeño - Av. Javier Prado Oeste Nº 1057, La Victoria - Lima 13 ☎ +51 1 472-5000, +51 1 472-1710
  • TEPSA - Av Javier Prado Este 1091, La Victoria west of the interesection of Javier Prado Este & Paseo de la Republica. ☎ +51 1 617-9000, +51 990 690-534 (mobile)

Muslim Friendly Rail Holidays in Peru

Estacion de tren peru - panoramio

Even when going by train, it's best to buy the ticket in advance. Buy first class or buffet class (still higher), or you risk getting completely covered by luggage. People will put their luggage under your seat, in front of your feet, beside you and anywhere there is space. This makes the journey quite uncomfortable, since you can't move any more and the view of the landscape is bad. The following companies operate passenger trains in Peru:

  • Ferrocarril Central de Andino (FCCA) - ☎ +51 1 226-6363 - The Ferrocarril Central Andino is the second highest railway in the world and the Highest in South America, connecting Lima to Huancayo. The journey on board of the Train of the Andes, through the heart of Peru is simply breathtaking. It is an 11-hour experience where the train reaches an altitude of 4781 m (15,681 ft) and goes through 69 tunnels, 58 bridges and makes 6 zigzags. In 2005, Ferrocarril Central Andino renovated their passenger wagons in a luxurious and comfortable way which puts the railway in the list of the most famous trains.
  • Tren Macho - Once or twice daily train services between Huancayo and Huancavelica. In Huancayo, this train leaves from (or arrive to) a different station than the Central de Andino.
  • Inca Rail - (sales office) Calle Portal de Panes 105, Plaza de Armas, Cusco ☎ +51 84 581860 - Trains to Machu Picchu (Aguas Caliente Station) from Cusco and a second route from Ollantaytambo to Aguas Caliente.
  • PeruRail - (sales office) Av Vesco Astete s/n, Dist. de Wanchaq At the airport ☎ +51 84 581414 - Trains from Cusco Wanchaq Station to Machu Picchu (via Ollantaytambo) through the Sacred Valley on the Belmond Hiram Bingham (more luxurious class like the Orient Express) and the Sacred Valley trains ; to Puno (by Lake Titicaca) via Juliaca and a third route from Cusco to Arequipa on the Belmond Andean Explorer. They also have a ticket office in Miraflores Lima. Some of variations of the Sacre Valley routes to Machu Picchu originate from Urubamba to Aguas Caliente instead.

By foot

Camino-inca-dia1-c01

Besides the famous Inca trail to Machu Picchu, you can do a lot more hikes all along the Sierra, preferably in the dry season. The hiker's mecca is Huaraz, where you can find a lot of agencies that offer guided tours and equipment to borrow. The thin vegetation in the higher Sierra makes off-trail hiking easy. Good maps are hard to find inside Peru. It is better to bring them from home. Make sure you have enough iodine to purify your drinking water. When hiking in higher altitude, good acclimatisation is absolutely necessary. Take a good sleeping bag with you, since nights in the Sierra may become bitterly cold (-10°C in 4,500 m altitude are normal, sometimes still colder). Beware of thunderstorms that may rise up very suddenly. Rapid falling temperature and hard rain falls are a serious danger in higher altitudes. Don't forget that the night lasts for 12 hours year-round, so a flashlight is a good idea. When hiking on higher, but not snow covered mountains, water may be rare. Getting alcohol for stoves is easy: Either buy the blue-colored alcohol de quemar or, better, buy pure drinking alcohol. You can get this in every town for about S/3 per liter (don't even think about drinking it). It won't be so easy to find special fuel for gasoline stoves. Gasoline for cars can also be found in many hardware stores (ferreterias) sold by liters, but you can actually buy it directly on gas stations, provided you bring your own bottle.

By car

It is also feasible to tour the interior of the nation by car. This gives you a chance to get "off the beaten track" and explore some of the areas that haven't been transformed by tourism. An international driver's license is needed for driving in Peru.

Peru has three primary streets which run from north to south: the fully paved Panamericana Sur/Norte (PE-1S/1N) which passes through the whole country; more to the east there are the partially paved Longitudinal de la Sierra Sur/Norte (PE-3S/3N), Interoceánica Sur (PE-26) as well as the Interoceánica Norte (PE-5N). Most parts of these roads are toll roads in the direction from north to south. The primary streets are connected by 20 streets from west to east.

Beware that, aside from a few major roads which are in good condition, most roads are unpaved and your speed on them will be severely restricted. For these roads a 4WD is necessary. This is especially true during the rainy season from November to April. You should travel very well informed about your route. Take a good road map with you (e.g. Waterproof Peru Map by ITMB). On the web, cochera andina provides useful information about road conditions, travel durations and distances for more than 130 routes in Peru.

Be sure to bring plenty of gas, as gas stations in unpopulated areas are very rare and will oftentimes be closed. Purchasing gas late at night can be an adventure all its own, as even in more populated areas gas stations tend to close early and the pumps are locked. The owner of the station sometimes sleeps inside and, if you can rouse him, he will come out and let you fill up. Expect higher gasoline consumption in the mountains which often increases to more than 20 L/100 kilometers (12 mpg).

The traffic regulations are almost the same as in Europe and the U.S. But local residents tend to interpret them freely. You better honk in unclear situations, e.g. in curves and at crossings to indicate the right of way. Traffic checkpoints tend to be scattered throughout the nation and the police may try to extract bribes from foreigners for passage. It would be wise to travel with a local speaker who can navigate the roads and deal with law enforcement.

Tip: When you arrive in any town, be sure to have already decided what hotel you will be going to. Don't mention this or any other information to the agents awaiting you. They will use whatever you tell them to construe lies to make you change your mind and go with them. If you’ve already picked a reasonable hotel chances are that you will be OK there and they will have any (extra) information you’d be looking for, like bookings for tours or tickets.

Local Language in Peru

Andean Man

See also: Spanish phrasebook

The official language of Peru is Spanish, as in most South American countries. It's worth getting familiar with some basic Spanish words, as you'll need them to make your way around outside the main tourist centres. Although English is spoken by an increasing number of young people in Lima and to a limited extent in the most popular tourist spots, you'll find English far less commonly understood than you might expect in a country where tourism is such a big industry.

Especially when you're making your own way around, learning some Quechua or Aymara may open doors, as indigenous people will highly appreciate your effort. Quecha is the language of the Incas and the first language for many indigenous in the nationside of the Sierra. Aymara was the language of the Tihuanacu culture and it's widely spoken on the Altiplano. In both cases however, people will generally speak Spanish too.

Some slang terms:

bacán, cool.

chela (cerveza), a beer.

Me llega, it pisses me off.

Loco, crazy person. Usually said in a friendly manner, also means "mate, friend, buddie"

Tombo means "policeman" (and policemen don't like hearing it).

Chibolo(a), a kid.

Bamba/pirata fake, counterfeit goods & products

Some slang terms come from Quechua:

Que piña: means 'what bad luck' even though 'piña' in Quechua means 'coraje' or in English 'infuriating'.

Tengo una yaya: means 'I'm injured'. In Quechua, 'yaya' means injury.And 'yawar' means blood.

Arranca arranca no mas: means 'get the hell out'

What to see in Peru

Llama, peru, machu picchu

Forgotten temples in dense Amazon jungles, lost Inca cities, fabulous wildlife and extra-ordinary folklore. Peru holds all the stuff adventure movies are made of.

Many of the best Inca sites are in the Inca Highlands, around the beautiful city of Cuzco, once the capital of the Inca Empire and now a World Heritage Site itself, as well as a bustling city. Book at least half a year in advance if you want to walk the famous 4-day hike Inca Trail, which commonly starts at the 15th century Inca dwellings of Ollantaytambo. Your imagination must be on its A-game to see past the large crowds at the end destination, Machu Picchu, but it's worth your trouble. Wait for the biggest crowds to leave, find a quiet spot away from the tourist hassle and contemplate your view of one of the most famous and spectacular archaeological sites in the world. Many other sites are in the neighboring Sacred Valley.

The list of great Peruvian ruins from Pre-Columbian times is long, and not all of them are of Inca origin. A World Heritage Site and the ancient adobe capital Trujillo (Peru) | Chan Chan, built by the Chimú culture, was conquered in the 15th century. Other popular sites are the tombs of Sipán and the ruined fortress of Kuelap and the pre-Incan burial grounds of Sillustani, and Caral and the most ancient city in the Americas. Particularly well-known are the spectacular Nazca|Nazca lines, which you should see from the air, even if it'll take some haggling to get your ticket for the right price.

Natural attractions

Home to 84 out of the 104 recognized ecological zones in the world, Peru is incredibly rich in biological diversity. Benefiting from a broad array of landscapes and ecosystems, this country is an extraordinary place for anyone who loves wildlife. It's condors, llamas and jaguars that Peru is famous for, but almost a third of the bird species in the world and no less than 4000 butterflies live here too.

One of the best places to see all of this natural beauty is Manú National Park. This World Heritage Site boasts over 15,000 plant species, a 1000 different birds and some 220 mammals, including pumas, Giant anteaters and many monkeys. Disputably called the "world's deepest canyon" and the stunning Colca Canyon is Peru's third most-visited destination, just a stones-throw out of the beautiful city of Arequipa. Get close to the celebrated Andean Condors as they fly along the high canyon walls or buy a colourful handmade souvenir from one of the indigenous people that populate the picturesque Colca Valley. Of all the peaks in the Peruvian Andes and the 6768m Huascarán in Huascarán National Park is the highest of all. This 3000-km² World Heritage Site holds 663 glaciers, 296 lakes and 41 tributaries of three major rivers. The large city of Iquitos is a popular starting point to discover the mystic Amazon River, one of the seven natural wonders of the world. It's also the capital city of the Charapa culture. Just a few other great picks out of the long list of protected areas in Peru are Pacaya-Samiria National Reserve|Pacaya-Samiria National Reserve, Rio Abiseo National Park|Rio Abiseo National Park and Cutervo National Park|Cutervo National Park (with many caves).

Folklore

The diversity of Peru's people and cultures is reflected in a rich tradition of festivals, dance and music. In the Andes and the plaintive wail of the flute and beat of the drum accompany songs depicting indigenous life while dancers masked as devils and spirits are a marriage of pagan and Christian beliefs. In the jungle, ceremonial music and dance are a window into tribal life. And along the coast, a blend of elegant Spanish sounds and vibrant African rhythms reflect the Conquest and later slave labor of the New World.

One of the shows you can not miss it is the Caballo de Paso Peruano in Lima and the north coast of Peru. The Concurso del Caballo de Paso Peruano is in april and it is a mix between the caballos and the dance called "marinera" which is the coastal cultural expression in Peru.

Other highlights

Make your way to the blue waters of Lake Titicaca for an enchanting, high altitude encounter with local peasant women wearing bowler hats and join in the celebrations of their ancient communities. Puno is a good place to start, also for a laid-back boat ride to the various islands and Altiplano towns on and around the lake, all with their own character and historic remains. If you're craving perfect beaches and a sunburn, head to the crowded sands and resorts of Piura/Tumbes. Spend a day in one of the many excellent museums in Lima and dance until the morning in one of the cities popular clubs. Buy shamanistic herbs at the market of Chiclayo and see the dozens of tombs around it.

Best things to do in Peru

Trekking is a great way to see the nation. The most widely known route is the classic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. Other popular routes include Cordillera Blanca, Colca Canyon, Ausangate Trek and Salcantay (also spelt Salkantay) Trek.

Trek prices can vary considerably between companies, as can their respective porters' working conditions (no pack animals are allowed, hence equipment is carried by human porters). Although there is a minimum porter wage (S/42 a day) and maximum load porters can carry (25 kg/55 lb), not all companies keep to their claims!

Muslim Friendly Shopping in Peru

Money Matters & ATM's in Peru

The currency of Peru is the sol (ISO code: PEN), symbolised as S/. It is one of the more stable currencies in South America.

Coins are available in five, two and one sol, and in 50, 20, 10, 5 and 1 centimo. 5 and 1 centimo coins are not normally accepted outside of big supermarkets or banks, so avoid them (or bring them home for a collection or to give to friends). s are available in 10, 20, 50, 100 and 200 soles denominations; 200 soles notes are uncommon and – just like large bills in many countries – will not always be accepted.

ATMs

ATMs are available in big cities, upmarket hotels, and tourist areas. With a Cirrus or Maestro sign on it, you can withdraw cash easily. The exchange rate is the same as credit cards.

The withdrawal limits are generally low and withdrawal fees are high (Feb 2023):

  • Scotiabank: limit S/400, fee S/20
  • Globalnet ATMs: limit S/400, fee S/19
  • BBVA: limit S/400, fee S/18
  • Banco de la Nacion: limit S/400
  • BanBif: limit S/700, fee S/18
  • Banco de Crédito del Perú (BCP): limit S/700, fee S/13.50, but you can only do this once per calendar month with each foreign card

Make sure to carry sufficient cash when visiting smaller towns, as your credit card or travelers checks might not be accepted there.

Credit cards are common. Although cash has a ~2% better change rate, don't carry large amounts of cash on your journey. The Banco de Credito (BCP) gives good rates on traveler checks.

Rates in change offices are often somewhat worse. It's always worth comparing them before changing your money. When changing your money in change offices, check their calculations. Most of them make calculations on the fly for the amount you want using an electronic calculator in plain view, even showing you the process step by step (unless they are brutally obvious, like changing tens or hundreds). If they don't show, keep the money in your pocket and find someone that does.

Counterfeiting

Currency inspection machine – Lima airport

It's a big problem in Peru: make sure to get familiar with the money and do not hesitate to reject any note or coin (especially the S/5 coins) that look suspicious, just like any Peruvian would do. In other words, if you want to look like a savvy foreigner, take 10 seconds to check any paper note you get, even at a bank. All bills have a watermark and security stripe, and the large number on the extreme right denoting the denomination of the bill will change from purple to green when viewed at an angle. Don't take any note that is ripped; you won't be able to use it anywhere else but a bank.

If you are stuck with a counterfeit coin or note, if you try to use it at big stores they may want to confiscate it. Don't accept damaged or ripped bills, since you will have to take them to a bank in order to change them into new ones before you can spend them. Be especially careful when exchanging money with money-changers on the street (a common way for counterfeit money to enter the money supply) or at the border (notably the one with Ecuador).

Banknotes

Typically, small bills are very helpful to carry around. Change large bills into small ones as often as feasible. If you only have 50 and 100 soles notes with you, consider changing them at a bank. Local merchants and taxistas often claim to not have any change on them, forcing you to wait in public while they search for some (potentially dangerous) and sometimes with the hope that you'll grow impatient and let them keep the change.

In Peru, it's not as common for US dollars to be accepted in transactions as in other countries (such as Ecuador), but some nice, new 10 or 20 US dollar bills can be helpful in some situations. Often in small towns, local shops will change money for you. If so, it will be clearly marked.

What is the living cost in Peru

If you're on a budget, you can get around well for US$50 a day. Basic hotels or hostels (hospedajes) are available everywhere, with dorm beds in youth hostels typically costing US$8-15. You'll find plenty of very affordable restaurants (US$0.50-1.50) but for slightly more (US$2-3) you'll get an often much better lunch or dinner at better restaurants. Fancy restaurants are available in every city, with menus starting from US$20.

Buses are a fairly affordable way to get around. A 10-hour bus ride in a normal bus (not "Royal Class" or something like that) will set you back about US$20. If you can afford it and the more luxurious seats go for about double the price but will make a great difference in terms of comfort. Avoid bus companies that allow travellers to get into the bus outside the official stations. They are often badly managed and can be dangerous, due both to unsafe trainings or to highway robberies, which are unfortunately not uncommon. This should be heeded especially by female travellers on their own. Your hotel, hostel or a local tourist information booth can point you to the better options.

Trains (except the ones for Machu Picchu, which are very expensive) run for similar fees.

Don't forget to retain your exit fee of US$30.25 They accept US dollars or soles for the fee. Be sure to pay the exit fee before you get in line for security checks or you'll get to wait again.

Handicrafts

Chinchero.- Drop spinning by woman

Peru is famous for a lot of different, really nice and relatively affordable handicrafts. Keep in mind that buying handicrafts support traditional skills and helps many families to gain their modest income. Look for:

  • Pullovers, and a lot of other alpaca-woolen products in all the Sierra. Puno is maybe the cheapest place.
  • Wall carpets (tejidos).
  • Carvings on stone, wood and dried pumpkins.
  • Silver and Gold jewellery.
  • traditional musical instruments like pan flutes (zampoñas), skin drums.

Do not accept any handicrafts that look like (or actually are) pre-Columbian pottery or jewelry. It is illegal to trade them and there is the possibility not only of them being confiscated, but of being prosecuted for illegal trading, even if the actual artifacts are copies or fakes. Dealing with the police from the criminal side is messy and really unpleasant.

Buyer beware: Watch out for fake (Bamba) Alpaca wool products many items sold to the unsuspecting gringo are actually synthetic or ordinary wool! That nice soft jumper in the market for US$8 or so is most certain to be acrylic. Even in places such as Puno there is no easy way to tell if it is made from Alpaca, sometimes it might have a small percentage of Alpaca mixed in with other fibres. Baby Alpaca is not from baby animals but the first shearing and the fibre is very soft and fine. Generally Alpaca fibre has a low lustre and a slightly greasy hand to it and is slow to recover from being stretched. Shop and compare.

Bargaining

Bargaining is very common. If you are not used to it, respect some rules. If you intend to buy something, first ask the price, even if you already know what it actually should cost. Then check whether everything is all right. (Does the pullover fit you? Do you really want to buy it? Is the expiration date on the cheese exceeded? etc.) If the price is OK, pay it. If not, it's your turn to say a lower price, but stay realistic. First get an idea about how much you would expect to pay. Then say a price about 20-30% lower. It's always good if you can give some reason for that. Once you have said a price, you cannot give a lower one later. This would be regarded as a very impolite behavior. If you feel that you can't get your price, just say "No, gracias." and begin to walk away. This is your last chance. If you are lucky and the seller will give you a last offer, if not, say "No, gracias." again and go on walking. Realize that most of the products in tourist markets (i.e. the market in Pisac) will be sold in nearly every other market throughout your travels in Peru and South America, so try not to worry about never again finding that particular alpaca scarf.

You have a way for bargaining without saying an exact price, and it's saying "¿Nada menos?" and then you will be asking just if they can lower a bit the price.

Keep in mind: Never begin to bargain if you don't really want to buy.

Coca

Do not bring coca products home.

General notes

Supermarkets can only be found in cities and are somewhat expensive. In every town and there is at least one market place or hall, except Lima that has a dense concentration of supermarkets, malls and department stores. In cities and there are different markets (or sections of one big market) for different articles.

Stores with similar articles tend to be grouped in the same street. So, if you once know the appropriate street when looking for something special, it shouldn't be no more problem to find it quite soon.

Giving tips in restaurants (at least when basic or middle-range) is not very common but 10% for good service is polite.

Halal Restaurants in Peru

Peruvian corn

Please look under Masjids, as around masjids always some halal restaurants are nearby.

Peruvian cuisine is among the most varied in the world. Not only does the nation grow a variety of fruits and vegetables, but it does so throughout the year. Peruvian geography offers at least 8 different climates (desert along the coast, steep and high mountains and the Amazon basin). In Lima, due to its history as an important Spanish colonial port and the dishes are a mixture of amerindian, Spaniard, African, Asian and even Italian influences that contribute to the ever changing platos criollos (creole dishes). Rice is the staple foodstuff, and expect many dishes to include rice, in the Siera it's corn and potatoes, and in the Jungle yuca.

Fish can be found along the coast (of course), but also in the jungle area since the rivers supply fresh fish (but beware of contamination in the area known as high jungle or selva alta, where most of the cocaine is made and strong chemicals get dumped into rivers; mining is a minor source of pollution in this area). In the Sierra, trout (truchas) are bred in several places. A very common fish dish is ceviche, raw fish prepared by marination in lime juice. Popular variations of the dish can include shellfish, and even sea urchin. The exact recipe and mode of preparation of ceviche will vary from region to region. Definitely worth a try, especially in summer, but cleanliness and sanitation make all the difference. Use care when buying from street vendors and remember that it is often served spicy.

Throughout Peru there is a wide variety of potato dishes (papas as in Spain) and the traditional Andean vegetable. Papa a la Huancaina is a tasty dish of potato slices and diced boiled egg topped with a thin, creamy yellow Sauces, and usually includes a lettuce leaf and an olive or two. (A similar green Sauces, called Ocopa, can be served over potatoes or yuca.) Papa rellena is mashed potato reformed into a potato-like shape, but with Meat, vegetables, and other spicy filling in the middle.Aji de gallina is shredded Chicken in a thick, spicy, cheese-based Sauce over sliced potatoes, often with an olive and slice of hard-boiled egg. Causa is mashed potato layered with mayonnaise-based tuna or Chicken salad mixed with hot peppers.

Nowadays and the transport routes from the flat jungle areas are good enough to supply all the nation with vegetables and fruits. Nevertheless, vegetables still have the status of a garnish for the Meat. Vegetarian restaurants exist in all cities, but are relatively rare. In most areas and there is a rich offering of tropical fruits and fresh squeezed juices.

Peruvians are quite proud of their desserts, especially in Lima. Try them with care, since they tend to be extremely sweet and loaded with sugars, eggs yolks and similar ingredients. Try mazamorra morada, or purple custard, made from the same purple corn used for chicha morada drink; together with arroz con leche (rice with sweetened condensed milk) is called a combinado (combination). Picarones are a sort of donut, made from fried yams dough and served with chancaca, a very sweet sugarcane syrup. And the sweetest dessert suspiro a la limeña is perfect if you are in sore need of a high-calorie glucose shock. Panetón is a type of sweet bread with dried fruit. It is usually served for breakfast around Christmas with a cup of hot Chocolates. They used to come in big boxes only with huge panetóns inside but now they also sell personal portions. Chocotón is variety of panetón that replaces the fruit with Chocolates bits. The bread is very light and sweet. Because Christmas is the hottest time of year, people often replace the hot Chocolates with coffee or a drink that's served cold.

  • Coca Tea or Mate de Coca, a tea made from the leaves of the coca plant. It is legal to drink this tea in Peru. It is great for adjusting to the altitude or after a heavy meal. It may be found cold but normally is served hot.
  • You can find many places that serve fresh fruit drinks. Peru has a wide variety of fruits since its natural variety, so if you get a good "jugueria" you will have lots of options to choose from.
  • The Peruvian Amazon cities offer some typical drinks too such as: masato, chuchuhuasi, hidromiel and others.
  • Coffee. Peru is the world's largest producer of organic coffee. Ask for 'cafe pasado' and the essence produced by pouring boiling hot water over fresh ground coffee from places like Chanchamayo.
  • Emoliente. Another popular drink in Peru, often sold in the streets by vendors for 50 centimos. Served hot, its flavor is best described as a thick, viscous tea, but surprisingly refreshing - depending on what herb and fruit extracts you choose to put into it, of course. Normally the vendor's mix will be good enough if you choose not to say anything, but you're free to select the mix yourself. Normally sold hot, is the usual after-party drink, as a "reconstituyente", but it can be drunk cold too.

IncaKolaBottleGlass

Inca Kola. The Peruvian equivalent of Coca Cola in the rest of the world, which has been purchased by Coca Cola yet retains its unique taste. It is bright yellow and has a unique flavor. It tastes like Hierba Luisa.

eHalal Group Launches Halal Guide to Peru

Peru_-_Lake_Titicaca

Peru - eHalal Travel Group, a leading provider of innovative Halal travel solutions for Muslim travelers to Peru, is thrilled to announce the official launch of its comprehensive Halal and Muslim-Friendly Travel Guide for Peru. This groundbreaking initiative aims to cater to the diverse needs of Muslim travelers, offering them a seamless and enriching travel experience in Peru and its surrounding regions.

With the steady growth of Muslim tourism worldwide, eHalal Travel Group recognizes the importance of providing Muslim travelers with accessible, accurate, and up-to-date information to support their travel aspirations to Peru. The Halal and Muslim-Friendly Travel Guide is designed to be a one-stop resource, offering an array of invaluable information on various travel aspects, all carefully curated to align with Islamic principles and values.

The Travel Guide encompasses a wide range of features that will undoubtedly enhance the travel experience for Muslim visitors to Peru. Key components include:

Halal-Friendly Accommodations inPeru: A carefully selected list of hotels, lodges, and vacation rentals that cater to halal requirements, ensuring a comfortable and welcoming stay for Muslim travelers in Peru.

Halal Food, Restaurants and Dining in Peru: A comprehensive directory of restaurants, eateries, and food outlets offering halal-certified or halal-friendly options in Peru, allowing Muslim travelers to savor local cuisines without compromising their dietary preferences in Peru.

Prayer Facilities: Information on masjids, prayer rooms, and suitable locations for daily prayers in Peru, ensuring ease and convenience for Muslim visitors in fulfilling their religious obligations.

Local Attractions: An engaging compilation of Muslim-friendly attractions, cultural sites such as Museums, and points of interest in Peru, enabling travelers to explore the city's rich heritage while adhering to their values.

Transport and Logistics: Practical guidance on transportation options that accommodate Muslim travel needs, ensuring seamless movement within Peru and beyond.

Speaking about the launch, Irwan Shah, Chief Technology Officer of eHalal Travel Group in Peru, stated, "We are thrilled to introduce our Halal and Muslim-Friendly Travel Guide in Peru, a Muslim friendly destination known for its cultural richness and historical significance. Our goal is to empower Muslim travelers with accurate information and resources, enabling them to experience the wonders of Peru without any concerns about their faith-based requirements. This initiative reaffirms our commitment to creating inclusive and memorable travel experiences for all our clients."

The eHalal Travel Group's Halal and Muslim-Friendly Travel Guide for Peru is now accessible on this page. The guide will be regularly updated to ensure that Muslim travelers have access to the latest information, thus reinforcing its status as a reliable companion for Muslim travelers exploring Peru.

About eHalal Travel Group:

eHalal Travel Group Peru is a prominent name in the global Muslim travel industry, dedicated to providing innovative and all-inclusive travel solutions tailored to the needs of Muslim travelers worldwide. With a commitment to excellence and inclusivity, eHalal Travel Group aims to foster a seamless travel experience for its clients while respecting their religious and cultural values.

For Halal business inquiries in Peru, please contact:

eHalal Travel Group Peru Media: info@ehalal.io

Buy Muslim Friendly condos, Houses and Villas in Peru

Lima_cathédrale

eHalal Group Peru is a prominent real estate company specializing in providing Muslim-friendly properties in Peru. Our mission is to cater to the specific needs and preferences of the Muslim community by offering a wide range of halal-certified residential and commercial properties, including houses, condos, and factories. With our commitment to excellence, client satisfaction, and adherence to Islamic principles, eHalal Group has established itself as a trusted name in the real estate industry in Peru.

At eHalal Group, we understand the importance of meeting the unique requirements of Muslim individuals and families seeking properties that align with their cultural and religious trainings. Our extensive portfolio of Muslim-friendly properties in Peru ensures that clients have access to a diverse selection of options tailored to their needs. Whether it's a luxurious villa, a modern condominium, or a fully equipped factory, our team is dedicated to assisting clients in finding their ideal property.

For those seeking a comfortable and modern living space, our condos are an excellent choice. Starting at US$ 350,000 and these condominium units offer contemporary designs, state-of-the-art facilities, and convenient locations within Peru. Each condo is thoughtfully designed to incorporate halal-friendly features and amenities, ensuring a seamless integration of Islamic values into everyday living.

If you are looking for a more spacious option, our houses are perfect for you. Starting at US$ 650,000, our houses provide ample living space, privacy, and a range of customizable features to meet your specific requirements. These houses are located in well-established neighborhoods in Peru, offering a harmonious balance between modern living and Islamic values.

For those seeking luxury and exclusivity, our luxury villas in Peru are the epitome of sophistication and elegance. Starting at US$ 1.5 million and these villas offer a lavish lifestyle with private amenities, breathtaking views, and meticulous attention to detail. Each luxury villa is meticulously designed to provide a serene and halal environment, allowing you to enjoy the finest living experience while adhering to your Islamic principles. For further details please email us at realestate@ehalal.io

Muslim Friendly hotels in Peru

Hotels in Peru are very common and fairly affordable. They range from 1 - 5 stars. 5 star hotels are normally for package tourism or business travel, and very common outside of Lima for most visited tourist attractions such as Cuzco/Machu Picchu with amaizing landscapes, Paracas (to flight over the Nazca Lines), Tumbes with great beach resorts, and of course in Lima with international and peruvian companies. All of them under international standards and expensive, but really worthwhile to try them. 4 star hotels are usually a bit on the expensive side (>US$80 per day) and common in the large cities. 3 star hotels are a good compromise between price and quality and usually US$30-50. 2 and 1 star hotels are very affordable (<US$40), but don't expect hot water or a particularly safe neighborhood.

In many cities there are hotels in residential areas, but they are not tourist hotels but "couples" rooms for lovers. They are usually signed as "Hostel", which can confuse the unaware traveller thinking it was for backpackers. Lately there have being a huge development of guesthouses, backpackers lodging, bed and breakfast, and also vacation rentals (apartments for short term rent). So and the lodging options are more varied now.

Study as a Muslim in Peru

Peruvian Spanish, particularly on the coast, is clearer than European Spanish and Spanish from other Latin American countries, especially México, Colombia and Chile. People generally don't tend to speak too fast, though they use slang quite liberally. On the whole, Peru is a good and affordable place to embark on Spanish courses (once you are there).

Stay safe as a Muslim in Peru

Miraflores de Noche 17

  • Be aware of your surroundings and try to avoid unlit or unpopulated areas, especially at night. There is a lot of petty crime that can turn violent. Avoid groups of male youngsters since there are many small gangs trying to rob passers-by. If you witness a robbery be very careful before intervening, since robbers may be armed and are quite prone to shooting if they feel threatened.
  • Armed robberies is common.
  • Some travelers don't use wallets, but keep the bills and coins directly in their pocket. Let's say some little bills on the left side and the rest on the right side. Thus and the pickpocket's job gets much harder.
  • Don't walk around with debit or credit cards in your pocket. Leave them in a safe place when you do not immediately need them, because tourists have been kidnapped and forced to take out money each day for a period of a few days.
  • If you want to take large amounts of cash out with you, a neck wallet is always a good idea - you can hide it under your shirt.
  • Watch out for false bills. Every bank has posters that explain what to check for when getting higher valued bills. The only security element that has not been falsified is the bichrome 10, 20, 50, 100 or 200 now also used on US$ bills. Don't be shy about checking any bills you receive. Most Peruvians do so, too. You may get false bills even at upscale places or (quite unusually, but it's been known to happen) banks, so check there too.
  • A feasible petty scam is to replace 5-Soles coins with very similar-looking 5-Boliviano coins when giving change. Bolivianos are worth about half the amount of Soles, but you will likely be out the whole amount, considering Bolivian currency is useless in Peru.
  • When taking a taxi, take a quick look in the back seat and in the trunk, to make sure there is nobody hiding there. There have been reports of armed robberies/kidnappings taking place in taxis. Afterwards, Muslims are blindfolded and driven outside the city and left behind by the highway.
  • At the border crossing from Ecuador (Huaquillas) to Peru people have tried to steal passports by acting like plain-clothed police officers. They give you another form to fill in which is fake. This has taken place although police and customs personnel have been next to them.
  • When traveling on buses, it is recommended to keep your backpack under your seat with the strap hooked around your leg.

Police

  • Tourist police are dressed in white shirts, instead of the usual green ones, and normally speak English and are quite helpful to tourists. The common police officer does not speak any other language but Spanish but normally will try to help.

Dealing with the police can take a lot of time. In order to get a copy of a police report you need to go to a Banco de la Nación and pay S/3. Without this the police won't give you a copy, and you can only arrange this during working days.

Natural disasters

Located on the Pacific Ring of Fire, earthquakes may occur in Peru. If you're near the coast when the ground starts shaking, beware of tsunamis.

Medical Issues in Peru

Tap water Tap water is unsafe to drink or use for brushing your teeth in Peru, unless you boil it. Bottled water is affordable and tastes better than boiled water. Check the bottle to make sure that it has not been opened and refilled. In restaurants, (if you don't trust them) you could ask for the bottle of water to be opened in your presence. Ice cubes are ideally made with purified water, however avoid ice if in doubt.

Insect bites Avoiding insect bites reduces the risk of contracting diseases transmitted by mosquitoes such as yellow fever, dengue fever, leishmaniosis and malaria. Consider wearing long sleeves and read Pests#Mosquitoes for other useful advice.

Zika | Zika virus Zika is a mosquito-borne and sexually transmitted infection that can cause serious birth defects. Travellers who are pregnant or planning a pregnancy should avoid travel to Peru or follow strict mosquito bite prevention measures.

There have been reported cases of rabies in Peru, so beware of animals that behave strangely around you and get treatment immediately if you are bitten.

Sunburn and sun protection|Heat and sun Do not expect to become quickly acclimated to the heat, especially in the jungle. Avoid exhaustion, heat stroke and sunburn by taking sensible precautions, including drinking plenty of safe water and not waiting to feel thirsty before taking a sip.

Accidents and injuries Accidents and injuries produce more deaths of travellers than diseases, so be alert. Aside from normal precautions, you might want to avoid riding a bicycle or motorcycle in Peru if you are not very advanced.

Take a First aid kit for travellers, especially if you plan to hike in the nationside during your visit.

Vaccinations and prophylaxis

The quantity and type of vaccines necessary to travel to Peru depend on several factors, including your medical history and which parts of the nation you plan to visit. The vaccines most commonly needed to travel to Peru are against tetanus, diphtheria, typhoid fever, hepatitis A and B, yellow fever, rabies and meningitis. Some of these require more than one dose or significant waiting time before they become effective. Therefore, you should inquire about necessary vaccines 6 to 8 weeks before your trip.

Hepatitis A and Typhoid fever vaccinations are recommended for all travellers.

The government of Peru recommends Yellow fever vaccine for all travellers who are going to visit forest areas (Amazonia) below 2,300 m (7,546 ft). Travellers that only visit coast or highlands do not need the vaccine for yellow fever.

The vaccine for yellow fever is also required for all travellers who arrive from countries in Africa and the Americas where the disease is endemic. Yellow fever has been reported in Cuzco, San Martín, Loreto, Pasco, Amazonas, Ancash, Ayacucho, Huánuco, Junín, Madre de Dios, Puno and Ucayali. More information is available from the Vaccination Center Perú].

Hepatitis B vaccine is recommended for travelers who believe they might have sex in the nation, especially if the visit is for more than 6 months.

The rabies vaccine is recommended for travelers who could have close contact with infected animals while not in range of a hospital, but if you are bitten, get medical help as soon as feasible in any case, as the prophylactic rabies vaccine is not sufficient to prevent a rabies infection, which is almost always fatal once symptoms start.

Two doses of the measles/mumps/rubella (MMR) are recommended for all travellers who have not received this vaccine before.

A tetanus/diphtheria booster is recommended every 10 years.

For more information, see our article on infectious diseases and consult a doctor.

Malaria is present in parts of Peru. There is no risk of malaria in the big cities like Lima and surrounding areas or in areas above the 1500 m (4,921 ft). However, you could be at risk: (1) on the coast north of the nation (Tumbes, Piura, Lambayeque); (2) in the Amazon region: Loreto department (Iquitos), San Martin, Ucayali, Just as Amazon (chachapoyas), Cajamarca (Jaen). There have also been reported cases of malaria in Cuzco Department (Province of Concepción away from the tourist area of Machu Picchu) and Madre de Dios. Take appropriate precautions — and if advised by a physician, prophylactic medications — if you plan to visit these areas.

Pharmacies

Common medicines, like antibiotics, can be purchased in pharmacies (farmacias or boticas) quite cheaply and without restrictions. However, make sure the expiration date has not been reached. Pharmacists are mostly very helpful and can be consulted if needed. For less serious illnesses and they may replace a doctor.

Diarrhea

Electrolytic drinks help guard against dehydration. You can get powders to dissolve in water in almost every pharmacy. If not, just dissolve sugar and salt in water. But don't forget to use safe water, not unsafe tap water! Bacterial diarrhea can be treated with antibiotics, if itdoesn't vanish during a week. Usually, pharmacies are quite helpful.

Altitude

If you do not have experience with higher altitudes above 3,500 m (12,000 ft), don't underestimate it! It is not unusual for unacclimatized tourists to faint. If you are coming from sea level, stay at a medium height of about 3,000 m (10,000 ft) for at least one week. Then, altitudes of around 4,500 m (15,000 ft) should not be a risk, although you still will strongly feel the height.

Sunburn

Atardecer oscuro de Cusco

Since Peru is close to the equator and the sun can become dangerous for your skin and eyes. Especially in the Sierra and the strong UV radiation due to the height in combination with the rather cold air may burn your skin before you notice it. Sun-blockers are easy to get in drug stores (boticas). If your eyes are sensitive to light, bring good UV-blocking sunglasses from home. Of course, you can buy sunglasses in Peru, too, but you should really be sure that they block the whole UV spectrum; otherwise and they might be worse than none.

In hostels or hotels, you cannot rely on having water all the time. In the Andean region, it also can easily happen that showers have more or less hot water only in the afternoon since the water is heated by solar energy only. Electrically heated showers are widespread, but the electric installation is sometimes really dangerous, since the water heater is mostly situated at the shower head. Have a look at it before turning on the shower, especially if you are tall enough that you could touch the cables or other metal while showering and electrocute yourself. Don't be too paranoid, though, as these electric shock is usually painful rather than life-threatening.

Local Customs in Peru

Don't use the word indio, even though it's Spanish. For natives, it's very much like the English n-word, since it was used by Spanish conquerors. The politically correct way of speaking is el indígena or la indígena — although, like the n-word, very close people inside a circle of friends can get away with it. Another word to be careful with is cholo, chola, or cholita, meaning indígena. This may be used affectionately among indigenous people (it's a very common appellation for a child, for instance), but it's offensive coming from an outsider. The n-word is used, but in a funny/playful way, so If you hear it in the street, don't be offended right away.

Officially, most Peruvians are Roman Catholic, but especially in the nationside and the ancient pre-Hispanic religiosity is still alive, and syncretic forms of Catholicism and indigenous religion are common (but do not be offended by this "heresy" if you are quite religious). Respect that when visiting temple ruins or other ritual places and behave as if you were in a church.

Telecommunications in Peru

In all but the smallest towns and villages, one can find public telephones for national and international calls. Most are in bars or stores. Some of them accept coins, but watch out for stuck coins or dodgy-looking coin receivers as these might make you lose your money. Don't worry if your 1 Nuevo Sol coins don't get through at first, just keep trying and it will eventually work. Many public phones can be expensive, and an attractive alternative is a Locutorio, or "call-center". Typical rates include S/0.2 per minutes for calls in the nation, and S/0.5 per minutes for most international calls.

You also can buy phone cards with a 12-digit secret number on it. Using a phone card, first dial 147. When done so, you will be told how much your card is still valid and be asked (in Spanish, of course) for your secret number. After having typed it, you are asked for the phone number you want to connect to. Type it in. Then you get told how much time you can talk. After that and the connection is tried.

For international calls, it is often a good idea to go to an Internet café that offers Internet telephony|Internet-based phone calls. You find them in the cities. Internet cafés, called in Peru cabinas públicas, grow like mushrooms in Peru and if you are not really on the nationside, it should not be a problem at all to find one. Even in a smaller town like Mancora or Chivay you can still find Internet cafés with 512kbit/s ADSL. The connection is quite reliable and they are affordable (S/1.50-3 per hour). Just don't expect most of them to actually sell coffee - or anything at all but computer time or services like printing. It is not uncommon to find cabinas that burn CDs directly from SD, CF or Memory sticks. Many Internet cafés have headphones and microphones, for free or for an extra fee.

Tourist offices

  • iperú | - ☎ +51 1 574-8000 This government tourist office has a presence in most cities that are popular with tourists, and is helpful with information. They also keep tabs on businesses and log complaints, so you can check out tour operators, etc. before you confirm. Their services are free.


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