Weather and climate vary with the regions. The coast has its summer from December to April. In the winter temperatures drop but it's still rainless. In the Andes April to October is the dry season, 20-25℃ in the day and cold at night, sometimes below freezing. The rest of the year it is rainy with a slight temperature drop. The jungle has its dry season from April to October with temperatures up to 35℃. During the rainy season there is heavy rainfall and high humidity.
Passport; travelers checks; first-aid kit (see our medical kit packing list for a list of suggested health supplies); Swiss army knife or leather man; cloths for warm and cool weather as one can encounter both in an afternoon in the Andes or if traveling between regions; raincoat; backpack; money belt or neck pouch; watch with alarm clock; toilet paper and tampons (both can be hard to find outside of Lima); flashlight or headlamp; plastic bags for separating dirty and clean clothes and shoes; needle and thread; biodegradable soap (if in backcountry areas); notebooks and pens/pencils; hat; and sunglasses.Leave copies your important documents, such as your passport, as well as travelers check and credit card numbers, with someone who can fax them to you if they are stolen and/or give a copy to a trusted traveling companion. E-mailing numbers to an on-line e-mail account on Hotmail or Yahoo is also a good idea since you can access the Internet from almost anywhere.
Peru's electrical current is 110 volts 60 cycles, the same as North America, so adapters for North American equipment are not needed. However, plug converters are necessary in older buildings.
Regional Packing Lists
In most parts of the Andes, you can experience all four seasons in one day. Be prepared for cold nights and cold rain, especially if you plan on camping. Warm, fast drying clothes are recommended (synthetics and wool are good, but avoid cotton, especially directly against the skin). Good hiking boots that either dry quickly or are water-resistant are a must for most activities. the general packing list plus these items will serve you well in the Andes.
Sun hat; sun glasses; sandals (for the boat); sneakers (for dry landings and rocky shores); teal-style sandals (for wet landings); swim suit; umbrella (for sun protection during island hikes); high factor, waterproof sunscreen; wind resistant jacket; light sweater or sweatshirt (nights can get rather cool and you don't want to miss stargazing on deck); twice as much film as you think you will need; extra camera batteries; underwater camera; and motion sickness pills.
Rubber boots (a must since hiking boots don't work well in calf-deep mud - most lodges and arranged tours will provide boots up to size 10 or they can be purchased in most towns for about $5 USD); mosquito net (most hotels and tour companies offer nets); insect repellent (with DEET); malaria pills; antihistamine tablets and an epi-pen for people with serious allergies to stings; water purification tablets (iodine is recommended); oral rehydration packets; binoculars (invaluable in the rainforest - it's worth spending a bit of extra money to get a good pair: 8 x 40 are excellent for poor light conditions under the forest canopy); plastic bags for keeping your clothes dry; swimming suit; lightweight quick drying clothes; at least one long-sleeved shirt; one pair of loose-fitting pants (no jeans); a light sweater (it gets surprisingly chilly in the rainforest, especially on boat trips); poncho that fits over you and your pack (the cheap plastic knee-length type coats are better than goretex, which will soak right through in a real rainforest deluge); bandana; a pair of clean socks for each day; Teva-like sandals or sneakers for around camp; and zip lock bags for food, books, maps and anything else you hope to keep dry.
All clothes (undergarments included) should be loose fitting to help keep you cool and to reduce your chances of being bitten by chiggers.
Health & Immunizations
In order to avoid upset stomach you must be careful with the water that you drink.
It is not recommended to drink water directly from the tap. It is advisable to drink only bottled or boiled water.
You have to be very cautious of where you eat. Make sure they adhere to basic hygienic standards. If not, it is advisable to consume canned food.
When visiting cities in high regions, do not have carbonated drinks. It is also recommended that you eat fresh fruits and lemon flavored candies to avoid altitude sickness (soroche). Make sure you also have tablets of "coramina" handy, as these pills are ideal to avoid soroche. You should also try to avoid heavy foods because your digestion will be much slower than normal.
In the event you suffer great discomfort, contact your physician.
It is recommended that anyone who travels to the jungle in Peru get vaccinated for yellow fever. (According to information given by the Health Minister, there have not been any cases of this illness registered in this area for 15 years).
Make sure you are vaccinated at least 10 days before arriving at the jungle. It is necessary to carry your vaccine certificate with you, as you will be required to show it along the excursion to Manu.
In case you arrive without having taken this vaccine, you can get vaccinated at the Jorge Chavez International Airport, the Hospital 2 de Mayo or next to the Hospital del Nino. Prices are less than $20.00 USD.
You may also ask your physician about the possibilities of taking a vaccine against diphteria, tetanus, typhoid, polio or hepatitis.
- Take normal precautions against pickpockets
- Carry a copy of identification documents. Keep originals and your valuables in the safety deposit box of your hotel and make sure to list down what you deposit and verify the responsibility assumed by the establishment.
- Carry valuables discreetly. Do not carry large amounts of cash. Keep an eye on your bags and luggage.
- Do not carry suitcases, bags or sac packs on your back.
- Do not exchange money out in the street.
- Do not walk around late at night through areas with poor lighting or without a companion