As South America is in the southern hemisphere, when it is winter in the northern hemisphere, it is summer in South America, making South America the perfect place to escape the cold of the winter months. The advantages of coming to Peru in the South American summer is that it is low season and also rainy season in some parts of the country. This means that there are less tourists visiting the major attractions in Peru, which also means more hotel rooms are available with far better prices, less lines and waiting times at the important ruins and sacred sites, making the whole experience more enjoyable.
If you plan to do the Inca Trail there is more chance that you will secure a ticket to the trail as in the high season you need to book months in advance. During the low season, the trail is mostly in silence and you can take your time and not worry about the crowds coming behind you. The best time to do the Inca Trail in the low season is in March and November, but remember in the highlands of Peru, that the trail will be wet so you will need to take your wet weather gear.
When you’re in Peru, you must travel to Machu Picchu. In the high season, you will experience long wait times at the entrance to the ruins. During the wet season or summer in Peru, the crowds are much smaller and you will get to experience the ruins more peacefully. In February, every year in most parts of Peru is Carnival, which is the most colorful and playful month of the year. The locals celebrate Carnival and the month of February with water fights usually featuring balloons filled with water thrown at passing people. The highlands celebrate with water but on the weekends, it is not uncommon to see parks filled with people celebrating with food, alcohol and dancing. Another custom in Carnival is to fill a tree with presents and the children have to knock them down with sticks, this causes mayhem and it’s lots of fun.
If you love to party then you must be in Peru for New Year’s Eve, especially in Cusco where the main square is full of partygoers and the night sky is filled with colorful fireworks. Dance the night away in one of the many nightclubs. In Lima, the areas of Los Olivos and Barranco are recommended to pass the night away.
During the month of Feburary, in Southern Peru especially in Puno and on the shores of Lake Titicaca the Virgin de Candelaria is celebrated. This celebration is considered the greatest festival in Southern Peru. Beginning every year on February 2, there are parades, colorful costumes, music and a lot of drinking. The local people and tourists gather to celebrate the mix of Native and Catholic religious ceremonies before the start of the party. The Virgin is the center of the celebrations but the festival is also associated with the lake and the birth of the Inca Empire and Pachamama, everyone dances in her honor to show their devotions and to give thanks for their lives and their blessing. The whole festival ends with the beginning of Carnival.
In Northern Peru, there is a variety of great beaches to spend a week or so relaxing. The weather will be hot and sticky, perfect to pass a great beach holiday away. On the north coast, towns like Mancora offer white sandy beaches and many different types of accommodation to choose from. Further north from Mancora is Punta Sal, which also offers beautiful beaches, where you can drink the day away with Pisco Sours. South of Lima, where the people of Lima head in the summer is Punta Hermosa or Puerto Viejo to cool off in the summer months. The long coastline in Peru gives you many choices for a beach holiday, so take advantage of the many different beach resorts available during the season.
Christmas in Peru is a religious affair in most major cities; the main celebration is on Christmas Eve where most families celebrate with a dinner commemorating the birth of Jesus Christ. In most main plazas there will be a fireworks display and celebrations. Hot Chocolate and Panatone will be served and the celebrations will last most of the night.
As you can see, the winter is the perfect time of year to travel to Peru, with lower prices offered on tours and great discounts on hotel rooms, the opportunities are endless.
Peru tourism is alive and waiting for you all year round so why not book your trip today and discover all that Peru has to offer, Let’s Go Peru are here to help!