Peru and the Amazon region Travel requires a lot of caution and preparation before setting off. Below is a list of FAQ’s that will help you with queries and doubts.

Central Plaza in Puerto Maldonado
Image via Wikipedia

What is the weather like?
Peru’s climate can be divided into two seasons – wet and dry – though this can vary depending on the region. Temperature is mostly influenced by elevation: the higher you climb, the cooler it becomes.

Coastal areas – Lima, Ica, Nasca, Arequipa:
The coastal region of Peru is cool for its latitude and quite dry year-round. Temperatures are warmest during the summer months (December to March), with hot and humid days of around 29°C (84°F) and cool nights of just below 20°C (68°F). Winters (from April to November) are not too cold but extremely humid.

Highlands (Andes) – Cusco, Puno:
The highlands have a rainy season (November to April) and a dry season (May to October), when the days are clear and sunny but very cold at night especially at altitude. Dry season is therefore ideal for trekking and for mountaineering. Daytime temperatures will generally be between 16°C- 21°C (60°F and 70°F), although in the intense sunlight of midday it can feel warmer. Night time temperatures can fall as low as -7°C (20°F).

Rainforest (Selva) – Iquitos, Puerto Maldonado:
Although the Amazon jungle is consistently humid and tropical, with significant rainfall year-round, it too experiences two clearly different seasons. During the dry season (May to October), temperatures reach 30°C – 38°C (86°F and 100°F) during the day. From November to April, there are frequent rain showers (which last only a few hours at a time), causing the rivers to swell; temperatures are similarly steamy.

What clothing and other items are recommended to bring?
Please arrive in clothes that you do not mind getting slightly dirty or wet, and wear footwear that is suitable for rainforest trails. Sunscreen, insect repellent, hat and waterproof clothing should be carried in your hand luggage and kept accessible during the journey to the lodge. In addition to these, we recommend bringing a raincoat, long trousers, shorts, cotton socks, long sleeved shirts, t-shirts, hiking shoes, sandals, toiletries, first-aid kit, bottle/canteen, large flashlight, binoculars, passport and sunglasses.

What health precautions should I take before visiting Peru?
You should visit your personal physician for a check-up prior to taking your trip to Peru. The following are the recommended vaccinations for Peru: diphtheria, tetanus, polio, typhus, hepatitis A/B, rabies. P A yellow-fever vaccine is strongly recommended for trips to the Amazon (Puerto Maldonado or Iquitos). The vaccine is required for all travelers arriving from a yellow-fever-infected country in Africa or Latin America. The yellow-fever certificate is valid 10 days after vaccination and for a subsequent period of 10 years. Malaria is prevalent in northern parts of Peru and in Iquitos (Amazon). The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (www.cdc.gov) recommends taking anti-malarial drugs. Please refer to your doctor for the most up to date information about anti-malarial medication.

Is the water safe to drink?
The standards for health and hygiene in the larger cities and tourist regions are relatively high. Nevertheless, travelers should drink only bottled water, which is widely available. Do not drink tap water, even in major hotels, and try to avoid drinks with ice. If you’re trekking in the mountains or visiting remote rural areas where bottled water is not available, boil water to purify it or use water-purification tablets. You are safer eating fruits that you can peel or salads and fruits washed with purified water, as well as foods that have been thoroughly cooked. Your best bet is to avoid food from street vendors.

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