in little known villages in the sacred valley between Cuzco and Machu Picchu, experience the world's largest clay lick at the Tambopata Research Center or share the trail with community members at Posadas Amazonas, the UNDP and Conservation International award winning eco-lodge. Peru is at the heart of our business and still our favorite place to explore.
Date: 1 Jan – 1 Feb
Every year the northern city of Trujillo is filled with happiness, rhythm and color along marinera music. And that is because thousands of couples from all over the country come to the Mansiche Coliseum in order to participate in the National Marinera Contest.
Having its Hispanic, Indian and African origins, marinera represents the essence of our cultural roots. This dance represents a flirting, a seduction game between a man that imitates the grace and elegance of our Peruvian Paso horse and a woman who is coquettish, arrogant, and delicate. He wares a linen poncho and straw hat, she wears a silk blouse and a long and very full skirt that follows her movements. Both, dancing along a cajon and a guitar, agitate their white handkerchiefs for almost five minutes of magic, music and joy.
Date: 1 – 15 Feb
Every year, in February, the city of Puno, South of Peru and by the Titicaca Lake, turns into a great festivity to honor the Candelaria Virgin. This is a domestic and international well-known popular-religious festivity. Here we honor the Pachamama or mother earth, a relationship with nature that comes from many centuries ago, and that is closely related to pre-Hispanic sowing and harvesting cycles as well as with the area’s mining activity. During this festivity, different activities take place such as processions, folkloric shows and parades, while quechua, aymara and, Creole communities show their finest costumes, very bright and colorful, in an unbelievable folkloric display.
During the main parade, about 82 original dance groups with their typical costumes and 66 dance groups with their bright costumes cover the place with music and happiness. More than 25,000 musicians and dancers go along the streets in an endless party.
It is the Virgin’s festivity, Puno is waiting for you to celebrate!
Carnival Group Parade
Place: Madre de Dios
Date: 18 – 25 Feb
Along the Peruvian Amazon, citizens celebrate the Carnival Festivity with peculiar music and dancing groups to cheer and delight the assistants. The most exciting moment is the crowning of the Carnival’s Queen and King Momo who formerly represented the God of craziness and fun. The river banks are the gathering point to enjoy a good bath and to taste typical regional food. Meanwhile, around the city’s main square you can find typical handcrafts.
This Carnival is a whole party!
Internacional Adventure Sports Festival Lunahuana
Date: 24 – 25 Feb
Adventure tourism is a new world wide trend, it is practiced by millions of people and Peru is not the exception. Our country has natural scenarios that seem to have been specifically designed for practicing these outdoors activities and to be in contact with nature.
Aldea (Asociacion Latinoamericana de Deportes de Aventura) is an institution dedicated to promoting and spreading Adventure Tourism, Ecotourism and Adventure Sports, as well as the promotion of tourist places suitable for developing these activities. It has organized for more than fifteen years the Adventure Sports Festival in Lunahuan Valley (Canhete, Lima). An event that gathers the best sportsmen of the region.
Here, in Lunahuana, the Rafting competition (raft and kayak), Rock climbing (artificial rocks) and Mountain Biking takes place every year. Come and enjoy a show full of adrenalin!
Vendimia, International Grape Harvest Festival
Date: 2 – 12 Mar
Wine is the essence of the land aged in barrels. In our country, Ica at the South of Lima, is the place for the best grape vines. They belong to the region’s most ancient and traditional viticulturist wineries.
As every year, on March – and for a whole week – we celebrate the grape festival, most known as the International Harvest Festival, an event that gathers thousands of domestic and international visitors who enjoy the happiness of its people, the beauty of Miss Harvest’s candidates, and the tasty flavors of its food and drinks.
During these days, Ica becomes an endless party. You will find music festivals, cock fighting, and Peruvian Horse riding everywhere. We drink Pisco, our national drink, cachina and, of course, wine. Wineries wait for you with open arms, you just have to follow the “wine road”.
If your palate savors the exquisite Peruvian food, your eyes can also enjoy the allegoric cars’ parade of the beauty queen. Live an extraordinary party, Cheers!
Date: 1 Mar – 1 Apr
The city of Ayacucho, South of Peru, is internationally famous for its spectacular Holly Week celebration. It is also known as the city of churches, as well as by its beautiful handcrafts with a very religious influence, made of Huamanga stone. Ayacucho with its 33 churches welcomes thousands of tourists anxious to see the most Andean Via Crusis fervent dramatization.
Everyday, in all the city streets we find faithful people carrying old saints images in processions. At Easter Sunday dawn, the most awaited moment, is when Resurrected Christ comes out of the Cathedral. A very emotional moment filled with faith. The main square is illuminated by thousands of candles and bonfires, creating a warm atmosphere. A mixture of music, traditions and fervor, Ayacucho invites you to personally share the jubilation and faith of their people.
Nazca Tourist Week
Date: 5 – 10 May
The Nazca Tourism Week ( South of the department of Ica) is a festivity with many traditions in which the inhabitants offer visitors a number of cultural and tourist activities. We can point out all kinds of festivals such as farming, handcrafts, industrial and commercial ones. There are also cock fights. At dusk, picarones and anticuchos, Creole music shows and fire works cover the main squareÂ with good food, lights and happiness. During your visit, we invite you to practice sand boarding, a very fun sport filled with adrenaline. We welcome you to slide in the sands of Cerro Blanco, the highest dune in South America. Nearby you can also visit interesting archeological sites with great history such as the worldwide famous Nazca Lines which cover the city with an aura of mysticism and energy.
We invite you to enjoy a very peculiar week.
Date: 23 – 25 Jun
Saint John festivity is a proof of the Spanish influence in the Peruvian Amazon. It is the most important festivity in the whole Jungle because it symbolizes faith renewal by the figure of John The Baptist (he baptized Jesus on the Jordan river and he preached his gospel) and the power of water as the main element in the area.
In cities like Iquitos, located in the department of Loreto, and Pucallpa, located in th department of Ucayali, inhabitants go towards the nearest river or lake in order to purify themselves in the water. During this celebration we can appreciate unique musical festivals and typical dances, as well as agro-industrial and handcraft expositions. You can also find typical dishes as famous juanes (rice tamales) that represent the saint’s head. Enjoy the Jungle and the warmth of its people!
Date: 24 Jun
Inti Raymi or the Sun festivity is the most important celebration in this part of the continent. Every June 24, tourists from all over the world gather around Sacsayhuaman fortress, located a few minutes from Cusco in order to experience a legend, a ritual-ceremonial show filled with incomparable cultural richness.
The sons of the Empire were afraid that the Sun God, source of life, would disappear from the universe, and in order to avoid such event they implored him to stay in order to remove hunger away from the Tawantinsuyo. This is the essence of the festivity that celebrates the arrival of winter solstice.
In this day, the Inca becomes again the supreme ruler, and the sun is the divinity that everybody claims to for abundant harvest. To begin the ceremony, the Inca, wearing his finest clothes and carrying his scepter and his shield, enters carried by his subjects that represent the people from the four suyos or cardinal points in the former Inca Empire. Two llamas are sacrificed to honor the Pachamama or mother earth, while dancers display their abilities along drums, chanting praises toward the sun. There is no other festivity like this in the whole world. Cusco is waiting for you!
Del Carmen Virgin
Date: 15 – 16 Jul
When the Spanish conquered the Inca Empire, they imposed their customs and religion. The reason there are so many festivities dedicated to the Virgin is because, in secret, she represented the cult towards the Pachamama or mother earth to the natives.
In Paucartambo, at 110 km from Cusco, we celebrate Del Carmen Virgin or Mamacha Carmen festivity. She is the mother of mestizos, that is to say those children born from Spaniards and native mothers. During the celebration, we can appreciate a colorful parade filled with music, choirs that sing in Quechua and groups that represent different Peruvian history dramatizations.
On the main day, the image of the Virgin goes on procession by the town streets blessing the participants and scare away the demons that practice risky pirouettes over the roofs. The war between the faithful and the demons is a show that mixes paganism and faith. The endless fight between the good over the evil where good ones win. Come and celebrate the Mamacha Festivity!
Cruz de Chalpon
Date: 1 – 7 Aug
The town of Motupe is located at 90 kilometers north of Chiclayo, in the department of Lambayeque, on Peru’s northern coast. And as many places in our country, its history is related to a religious event.
Chalpon mountain is located at about 10 kilometers from Motupe. It is a very difficult access mountain. The history of Chalpon Cross comes from the XVII century, when a hermit religious placed a wooden cross that saved the town from a great flood. Since then, the spot where the cross was found became a peregrination place where thousands of believers go to thank and give proof of miracles granted. On the main festivity day there is a procession, a multitudinous display of devotion that can only be compared with the one offer to Senhor de Los Milagros (Lord of Miracles) in Lima. That same day, at night you can find fire works, musical bands which creates a party atmosphere, typical northern food everywhere, as well as Peruvian Paso Horses’ exhibitions. During your stay to visit the Senhor de Sipan’s archeological site, we invite you to be part of our festivity of faith.
Spring International Festival
Place: La Libertad
Date: 1 – 30 Sept
Trujillo, capital of the department of La Libertad, is a cheerful and binging city, birthplace of northern marinera and Peruvian Paso Horse land. Year after year, the city gathers a great number of domestic and international tourists to what has become one of the most important events of the region: the Spring International Festival. This Festival is a potpourri of cultural and social activities among which we can point out the election of the Spring beauty queen, musical shows, bull fights and Peruvian Paso Horse presentations. We can also find classical and popular music concerts, ballet shows, fashion shows, as well all kind of expositions: handcrafts, engravings, paintings, and farming products.
The main attraction is the traditional allegoric cars’ parade where national and international beauty queens welcome the audience’s enthusiastic greetings. There are also baton twirlers that leave the public speechless because of their skill and ability.
Trujillo is a unique city with beautiful old houses, wonderful beaches and incredible archeological sites such as Senhora de Sican (Sican Lady) and the Sun and the Moon Huacas (Burial Places). Its people waits for you with open arms.
Date: 7 – 10 Dec
On December 8, the Colca Valley, located four hours away from Arequipa, is dressed to celebrate the Immaculate Conception Festivity. It is a singular show filled with dances and color. Men wear female dresses in order to get closer to women and take them away. Coming to the valley during this season is the best excuse to visit its 16 baroque churches, the pleasant thermal waters from La Calera, the incredible agriculture platforms built along the world’s deepest canyon, and to appreciate the wonderful condor’s flight, over 3000 msnm, from The Cross viewpoint.
Unlike other equatorial countries, Peru does not have an exclusively tropical climate; the influence of the Andes and the Humboldt Current attach great climatic diversity Peruvian territory. The central and southern coast of the country have an arid desert or subtropical climate with an average temperature of 18 ° C and annual rainfall of 150 mm, a share of the cold Humboldt sea. In contrast, the north coast has a tropical arid climate due to the tropical sea, with an average temperature above 24 ° C and rainfall during the verano.Cuando no occurrence of El Niño, the average temperature of the whole coast rises (with higher maximum at 30 ° C) and rainfall increases significantly in the north and central coast.
In the mountains the following are observed climates: temperate sub-humid areas between 1000 and 3000 m, with temperatures around 20 ° C and rainfall between 500 and 1200 mm per year; cold climate between 3000 and 4000 m, with average annual temperatures of 12 ° C and frost during the winter; puna or frigid weather, in areas between 4000 and 5000 m, with an average temperature of 6 ° C and annual rainfall of 700 mm; and snow or icy weather in areas above 5000 meters, with temperatures below 0 ° C and snowfall. In the jungle there are two types of climate: humid subtropical climate in the high forest, with more precipitation to 2000 mm per year and average temperatures around 22 ° C; and humid tropical climate in the lowland rainforest, with precipitation ranging 2000 mm per year and average temperatures of 27 ° C
To enter Peru you must have a passport and it must be valid for at least 6 months after your departure date from Peru.
If you have changed your name make sure that is reflected on your passport. You must always use the name as it appears on your passport for all applications, visas and identification.
If you are getting a passport for the first time, or if your old one expired more than eight years ago, you will need to provide proof of citizenship, two passport photos, and passport fee. Please check the government pages of your telephone book to determine the most convenient location for you.
Photo Copies of Important Documents
It is a good idea to bring with you four photocopies of your passport and two copies of your airline tickets and a copy of your credit card information. Having copies is useful in case of documents are misplaced or stolen.
If you are a citizen of the United States of America or Canada it is only required t show upon arrival in Peru your valid passport. It must be valid for at least 6 months after your departure date from Peru.
Getting to Peru
Jorge Chávez Airport in Lima is the main gateway for international arrival and departure flights and it's the main hub for all local flights connections. Flights to Peru depart from New York, Atlanta, Miami, Houston, Los Angeles and Toronto.
Please contact the airlines directly or call your travel agency. Once you have the confirmed flights please send us you flight information in/out to/from Lima, Peru. We will confirm your flight out of Lima to your next destination.
Domestic Peruvian Flights: Mondo Verde Expeditions LLC is available to purchase all your internal Peruvian flights. Pricing will be confirmed by airline at time of request.
Important: The Participant's airline tickets, when issued, shall constitute the sales contract between the airline companies and the Participant. All ticket prices are subject to change without previous warning by airlines.
If for any reason the flight to/from Cusco or Lima is cancelled because of bad weather or mechanical problems, the guest loses the first night in the booked hotel without refund and activity planed for that day. The guest is also responsible for the costs of the additional night in the city where they are stranded.
International and Domestic Flights
All USA and European airlines and domestic Peruvian airlines already include the cost of this tax with the cost of their tickets. Contact your ticket agent for more information.
Andean Immigrations Card
On arrival in Peru (at the Airplane or Airport Customs) you will be asked to fill out a form, which will be stamped by the immigrations agent. This small piece of paper is called the Andean Immigrations Card (Tarjeta Andina de Migración). Please make sure to keep it with you during the entire duration of your trip, since you will be asked to show your ORIGINAL passport and Immigration Card on Check-in at EVERY accommodation you use.
This form proves that you are not a Peruvian resident and thus allows you to be exempted of paying certain taxes. If you don´t show this card on check-in, the hotel will need to charge additional tax fees. The payment of any additional taxes or other fees are a direct responsibility of participant. Mondo Verde Expeditions or the Tour Leaders are not responsible for any of these additional expenses due to misplacement of the Andean Immigration Card.
Immunizations / Medication
Before traveling to Peru it is important for the visitor to have the right protection against diseases and to understand fully what type of vaccinations that will be needed according to the regions he/she will be visiting. For general protection for visitors to Peru, it is important to have the following vaccinations:
- Hepatitis A
- Yellow Fever
How about Malaria? This is the most common question travelers ask when planning their travel to Peru. Malaria is a serious disease, which humans can contract by being bitten by an infected mosquito. Malaria is present in Peru but however it is extremely rare and most would say not an issue in the Cusco region. We are not in a position to make medical recommendations so we recommend you speak with your doctor or your travel clinic regarding this issue. We highly recommend following anti-malarial drugs recommended by the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) if you decide to take malaria medication:
High Altitude Medication: Most people traveling to Peru on vacation are going to visit the Andes. If you have issues with altitude or suffer from high blood pressure, ask your doctor about the use of high altitude medicine. Diamox is the most popular and tested drug for altitude sickness prevention and treatment. Increases the amount of bicarbonate excreted in the urine, making the blood more acidic. Acidifying the blood drives the ventilation, which is the cornerstone of acclimatization.
For more information on medical considerations please contact the:
Center for Disease Control and Prevention
It is vital that persons with medical problems or special diet requirements make them known to us well before departure so that land operators are properly informed.
Tips on staying healthy during your journey
The most common problems encountered by the traveler in Peru are stomach related problems (between 30% and 40% of travelers in a 2 week stay experience this to some extent) but the majority of these upsets will be minor. Please don't become paranoid, especially considering that Peruvian food and its incredible variety of natural ingredients should add a lot to your experience. All the hotels and lodges where we will be staying take special care with the preparation of the food and use filtered or bottle water for the preparation of fruit drink and coffee. Also the ice (where provided) is made with filtered water. Just be precautious with some items:
- Tap water in Peru is not always safe to drink. Bottled mineral water is readily available everywhere. Drinking tap water is not a problem when it has been previously boiled.
- In most good restaurants, purified water is used to wash fruit, vegetables and salads.
- Fruit in Peru is plentiful and delicious; just make sure to wash it or peel it if you have it straight from the market.
All of Peru is at USA Eastern Time
Currency, Banks and Credit Cards
The Sol (S/.) is the Peruvian currency and is available in banknotes and coins. U.S. Dollars are also welcome at most hotel, restaurants and shops at all major tourist destinations. The visitor can change money at banks, currency exchange offices, hotels and most major airports. Some machines will provide clients with US$. The establishments of the tourism sector usually accept payments in U.S. dollars.
Make sure you bring crisp, small denomination bills since getting large bills changed is difficult.
US Dollar is the most common and easiest foreign currency for exchange in Peru. Just make sure that the notes you bring from home are in excellent condition. Even the slightest rip will make exchange almost impossible. Unlike other countries credit cards are not always accepted, especially in small villages, so it is always advisable to carry some cash in soles or dollars with you.
Credit cards & ATM machines
Of the major credit cards such as Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Diner's Club, you'll find Visa the most widely accepted in Peru. All of the major cities have numerous ATMs (automatic teller machines), so withdrawing cash is easy. Credit cards can also be used to pay shop, hotel and restaurant bills.
Direct debit cards
The best way to withdraw money from an ATM is using a direct-debit card such as Visa. On withdrawal, the money is immediately deducted from your bank account and no interest is charged so long as you have sufficient funds back home. The exchange rate is usually very good. You may find, however, that like credit cards you may be limited to the amount that you can withdraw each day (usually US$500 per day and US$200 per transaction)
Casas de Cambio
These “exchange houses” can be found in just about any relatively major town. They are often open all day, are rarely crowded and the exchange rate is always better than the banks.
Changing money on the street is perfectly legal in Peru. Unlike other South American countries, Peru does not have a Black Market exchange rate. In fact the rate on the street differs very little from the Casas de Cambio.
It is highly recommended to leave at home ALL jewelry and expensive watches. If you do bring valuables, most hotels will provide our clients with a safe deposit box located in the hotel management office or in your room. A fee may be charged for this service and it is not included in the cost of your program. MVE is not responsible for lost or stolen items.
Electricity – Charging photo/video batteries
In all of Peru the electricity is 220 volts and 60 cycles. Hotels have in the bathrooms 110 volts for hair dryers and shaving machines. You will have full access and reliable electricity in all Peru hotels. In some jungle lodges you will have limited access to electricity with specific time for charging batteries and electronic equipment. Detailed information regarding this issue is provided with your pre departure materials.
Access to telephone and Wi-Fi is available at your hotels in all mayor tourist destinations in Peru. You may encounter slow service at some locations. Check with us if you need to have reliable contact through the internet in the locations you are visiting.
Most hotels provide clients with access to Internet at their business centers and most towns have Internet cafés that are open late at night. Please remember that you are not in USA or Europe and it is best to travel with the idea that Wi-Fi may be very slow or service sporadic at best. Do not be surprise if service is not available due to technical issues. Jungle lodges may have limited access to WIFI.
Cell Phones Usage
Check with your cell phone service provider in USA. Most have international plans that will work in Peru in order to have access to phone service, access to your emails and texting.
Mondo Verde Expeditions highly recommends that our clients protect themselves with travel insurance to prevent any financial losses. Mondo Verde Expeditions does not sell travel insurance but does recommend the services of Travel Guard.