Updated on September 13th, 2019
Peru is one of the premier backpacking destinations in South America. Along the western coast of the continent, Peru boasts an interesting history and contemporary culture.
The well-known manmade and natural wonders that fill the country, including one of the seven wonders of the world Machu Picchu, are all at your fingertips once you arrive.
Knowing some essential safety advice as well as general travel tips and planning a little in advance for your trip can give you a head start on being prepared for anything.
Let’s look at some of these specific tips and advice in more detail.
1. Get Your Shots
Although Peru is beautiful, it is plagued by many viruses and ailments that can put a quick end to your travel plans if you are not prepared.
Make sure to visit a travel clinic well in advance of your travels to ensure that you get all of the necessary vaccinations and immunisations that you need.
This includes routine vaccines like Hepatitis A and B, typhoid.
Although Yellow Fever is not a required vaccination to enter the country, the risk of infection still exists in Peru, especially at altitudes below 2,300 metres.
Depending on where you plan to go in the country, make sure to have all your bases covered when it comes to your health.
Since medical care is of uneven quality throughout the country, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
2. Avoid Trouble Spots
Peru can be a relatively safe country to visit if you stick to well-known tourist routes and attractions.
However, given the beauty of the country and its people you may be tempted to go off the beaten path and see some of the more authentic areas of Peru.
In these cases, it is vital that you check and keep up to date with the travel advice of the Australian government and avoid areas that are known for being dangerous.
In recent years, the border areas near Colombia and Ecuador have been problematic due to drug trafficking and the threat of violence.
Be cautious and use your common sense. When in doubt, stick to well-known and established routes and tourist trails.
3. Ensure That You Are Covered
Don’t leave home without travel insurance to protect yourself against any international contingency.
Not only is it a wise decision to get the best travel insurance you can before you arrive in Peru but it might also be required depending on what you plan to do in the country.
Most travel insurance providers require that you be in Australia while you are purchasing your policy, so make sure to take care of this step before taking off.
Ensure that you choose a policy that will cover the entire length of your stay in Peru.
If you are planning an extended backpacking holiday, ensure that you also have coverage if you need to cut your travels short due to an injury or illness, so if you meet one of several conditions, you can then be reimbursed your lost expenses for these cancellations.
4. Get Familiar With The Culture
As a final point, make sure that you learn a little bit about Peru and its people before you arrive. Not only is this a way to make your trip go much more smoothly, but it is respectful to those who live in the country as well.
Familiarise yourself with the local laws and be sure to act respectfully at historic sites, Peruvian authorities can impose fines for bad behaviour at these places.
You can even brush up, or start, on your Spanish before you arrive to make a good impression on any locals you encounter throughout your stay.
5. Enjoy Every Moment
All in all, exercise your common sense and treat all those you encounter with respect. With a little planning and preparation, your time in Peru is sure to be a life-changing experience.