When is the best time to visit Peru?
Expect a variety of climatic zones during your Peru vacation. The lands stretch over a vast distance from the north to the south. There is also a significant difference in altitude between the coastal areas and the Andes. Thus, the climate of Peru differs greatly from one region to another.
The coastal regions are warm and welcoming. Lima is pleasant with dry weather and daytime highs in the mid-70s. Further inland, however, the story is different. It is the wettest month of the year in Cusco. In the Amazon region, water levels are high due to intermittent and sometimes, heavy showers.
- Welcome the New Year in an unusual fashion at Huancayo – with traditional dances and plenty of dress-up
- Head to Trujillo’s national dance festival, the Fiesta de la Marinera
Lima is bathed in sunshine along with comfortable daytime highs (75°F) and warm sea temperatures (73°F). It is still high-water season in the Amazon. Cusco and the highlands continue to experience considerable rainfall. The Inca trail is closed all of February for annual maintenance.
- Be surrounded by music and color at the Virgin of Candelaria Feast in Puno
- Join in water fights at the Carnaval festival in Cajamarca
- Soak up some sun at Mancora
The coast remains warm though the crowds leave. Rains continue in Cusco and the Amazon region. Day time highs are around 80°F in Lima, 65°F in Cusco and in the high 80s in the Amazon.
- Paraglide over stunning Lima
- Explore the Amazon rainforest by boat
April is considered a shoulder month as rainfall levels drop in Cusco leaving behind a trail of green. Local tourism peaks during the period of Holy Week. Temperatures drop in Lima but are still at a pleasant 71°F.
- Watch unforgettable sunsets from the upscale, beachfront district of Miraflores in Lima
- Witness colorful processions during the Semana Santa festival in Ayacucho
Cusco and surrounding regions experience dry weather as the rains retreat completely. Lush, green highlands make trekking a worthwhile activity. Temperatures in Lima are in the low 70s with high humidity levels.
- Test your stamina at Huaraz, Peru’s trekking mecca
- Give in to the charms of the White City – Arequipa.
Peak tourist season starts and extends all the way till August. Cusco shines bright with clear skies, dry days and day time highs in the mid-60s. Nighttime temperatures drop to near freezing so it’s best to pack some warm layers. A fog, called garúa, starts to move into Lima beginning June onwards.
- Join the colorful Inti Raymi festival in Cusco
- Set off on a boat ride in the sapphire blue waters of Lake Titicaca
The trend of sunny, dry days followed by chilly nights continues in Cusco. Temperatures in Iquitos, the gateway to the Amazon jungle, is in the mid-80s in the day time and around 70°F at night times. Day time averages in Lima are around 66°F as thick fog or garúa hangs over the city.
- Trek the famous Inca Trail and marvel at the ruins of Machu Picchu
- Stay in the midst of nature as you explore the Amazon from Iquitos
August is a popular time to visit Machu Picchu. If visiting the Incan ruins is on your bucket list, be sure to book site tickets and lodging well in advance. It is also the driest month of the year in Iquitos with temperatures reaching the upper 80s. Day time temperatures in Cuso continue to hover around 64-65°F.
- Take a horse ride up the Rainbow Mountains
- Sample fresh ceviche at one of Lima’s awardwinning restaurants
It’s the start of low season presenting visitors a chance to explore the country without the crowds. The beginning of the month is still good for trekking though chances of rain increase as the month progresses. Temperatures in Lima average around 66°F. For sunshine and warmth, head to towns north of Lima.
- Hop on the Andean Explorer and discover the beautiful Peru countryside by train
- Head to Chiclayo and Trujillo for a fascinating history lesson
October is one of the driest months of the year in the Amazon making it the perfect time of the year to explore the rainforest by foot. It is also the start of surfing season along the coast. Lima temperatures average around 66°F and increase as the month progresses. In Cusco and Machu Picchu, it starts to get cloudy and chances of rainfall increase.
- Gourmands head to Lima’s Mistura Food Festival – one of the biggest in Latin America
- View the Amazon rainforest from high above on a canopy bridge walk
Daytime temperatures in Lima break into the low 70s and with dry, pleasant weather, it is a good time to travel to the capital city. Further north, it is sunny and warm and the conditions are just right for some water adventures. Chances of rainfall increase significantly in Cusco and Machu Picchu.
- Puno Festival week beckons with folk dances and festivities
- Ride the waves at Mancora
Temperatures in Lima continue to move upwards with averages hovering around 77°F. It is the official start of beach season with sunny days and warm water temperatures. Cusco and the highlands see an increase in rainfall as does the Amazon rainforest.
- Enjoy beautiful displays of nativity scenes in Cusco
- Solve the mystery of the Nazca lines
- Work on your tan at the untouched beaches of the Paracas National Reserve
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Best Time to Visit Peru by Region
Climate of Coastal Peru – Lima, Chiclayo and Trujillo
- Summer: December – March
- Winter: June – September
The weather on the coast of Peru is greatly influenced by the cold Humboldt current. During summer, temperatures range between 77-83°F on the northern coast while in winter, they dip to 50–59°F. The weather is more moderate in the South. During summer, the temperature in Lima rises to 77 while in winter, it dips to 59°F.
What to pack: Comfortable shoes and sun protection (sunglasses, hat and suntan lotion)
Climate in Peru Highlands – Cusco, Machu Picchu, Puno, Arequipa, Colca Canyon
- Dry Season: April – November
- Rainy Season: December – March
The climate in the Andes depends entirely on the altitude with two main seasons, dry and rainy. The best time to travel to Peru Highlands is between May to October when the skies are clear. Temperatures range between 32 to 85°C in the dry season and 41 to 68°F in the rainy season.
What to pack: Comfortable hiking boots and clothing that can be used for layering. A warm jacket is ideal for the chilly evenings.
Climate in Northern Peru – Cajamarca, Leymebamba, Chachapoyas
- Dry Season: May – September
- Rainy Season: October – April
It is easy to differentiate between the dry and rainy seasons in Northern Peru. Since Cajamarca, Leymebamba and Chachapoyas lie in remote areas, a trip to these destinations is not recommended during the rainy season. The best time to travel to Northern Peru is from May to October when temperatures range between 59 and 77°F.
What to pack: Waterproof jacket, comfortable hiking boots, sunglasses, hat and cream. A warm jacket or fleece is recommended for the evenings.
Climate in Northern Peru: Mancora
- Summer: December – March
- Winter: June – September
In Mancora, the temperatures rarely drop below 64°F and go above 90F through the year.
What to pack: Sunglasses, hat and suntan lotion, swimwear, sandals.
Climate in the Peruvian Amazon Jungle – Puerto Maldonado, Iquitos
- Dry Season: May – November
- Rainy Season: December – March
The Peruvian Amazon also experiences two distinct types of climates, the dry and the rainy seasons. During the dry season, temperatures can rise as high as 95°F, while in the rainy season, heavy showers occur at least once every day. The region experiences high humidity levels throughout the year.
What to pack: Light cotton clothing with long sleeves and trousers to protect you from insect bites. A waterproof jacket is ideal, as are comfortable walking shoes with light soles, binoculars, mosquito repellent, sunglasses, hat and cream.
Peru: The Luxury Experience
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Cusco is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and an amazing amalgam of an Inca capital and colonial city.
The ruins of Machu Picchu are one of the most beautiful and enigmatic ancient sites in the world.
Machu Picchu Pueblo
With its unique sub-tropical climate and mountain range scenery, Chachapoyas is a mysterious and remote region where a wealth of archaeological ruins and artifacts still have yet to be unearthed…
The small city of Puerto Maldonado is located a short distance (by Perúvian standards) away from Cusco, and is the southern doorway to the rainforest.
Offering glaciers, scenic lakes and dramatic snow-capped mountains, the Cordillera Blanca is an outdoor enthusiasts dream!
When traveling abroad in a foreign land, the experience is greatly heightened when you have experienced drivers and guides. Just being picked up from the airport gives the traveler a sense of security and welcome that is greatly appreciated. The drivers and guides become your temporary family.
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