But first I’d like to make clear that we found two types of travelers: there are the tourists (no offense) … and the travelers that are seriously committed, those that feed on local experiences and real people, in this article I will focus on the last ones.
Positive stress is talked about in psychology in relation to important events, such as a raise, a wedding or a vacation, so I will talk about the latter, because even the decision making regarding a trip of disconnection always entails headaches and unnecessary worries.
In the following article I will try to explain how to prepare your trip in the best way, but if you feel too lazy to read the whole text, you can always contact me or any of our travel specialists.
If you found this article, it’s probably because traveling to Peru is something you have in mind, so in the following paragraphs I will go in deeper so you can determine if traveling to Peru is really a possibility and something you desire, and the first thing you should ask yourself is:
1. I travel to:
Achieve a purpose
1.1 I want to experience:
Culture (living, archeology)
2. Is Peru my ideal destination?
If you answered yes to some of the options that were previously mentioned, I consider that Peru fits into your ideal destination. Now, in case you didn’t know, Peru is:
- the 3rd largest country in South America. And 20th of the world (this is what Peru looks like over the United States and over Europe respectively).
- a megadiverse country. It has 11 ecoregions and 84 life zones of the 117 that exist in the world. The natural wealth of the country is almost incomparable.
- divided into three major regions: Coast (of the largest ocean – Pacific), Sierra (of the largest mountain range – Andes) and Selva (of the largest river basin – Amazon).
- a place where almost 3,000 popular festivities are celebrated throughout the year due to the confluence of creeds, and customs of Peruvians.
- the cradle of at least ten great pre-Columbian cultures.
- To be a land of origin of hundreds (or thousands) of first-class foods such as potatoes, corn or quinoa.
- the main gastronomic destination of the Americas and has a handful of restaurants ranked as some of the best in the world.
- the destination of the best walks in the world and almost endless field activities.
3. How much time do I need?
Taking into account that a flight from Europe to Peru takes an average of 12 hours, and that upon arrival you will arrive the same day of departure, but that from departure you have to add + 1 day, I consider that the minimum time to devote to the trip is between 15 and 17 days.
This is only to cover the main attractions of the southern route, but if you want to visit a destination in the north, you should consider at least one additional week.
From the point of view of sustainability but also your own comfort and quality of experience, at RESPONS we consider that the longer and the slower the better.
On the other hand, if you travel from North America, where you usually have less time for vacations, having 10 to 12 days you could visit a couple of destinations.
Here are some examples developed for former clients, which means that your trip will also be unique and personalized.
4. What budget do I need to have?
If the time you have is already clear, now it’s time to calculate numbers and evaluate, depending on your budget, which of the following categories adapts best to your reality. Keep in mind, each traveler is unique and the following information only shows referential budgets based on our experience. Categories are based on two people traveling together. If you travel with more people, it’s cheaper.
Practical: $95 – $120 per day per person: basic, but good hotels, homestays, mostly group excursions. Nice, original trips, but somewhat basic.
Flexible: $120 – $140 per day per person: good places to stay (2 to 3 stars, some upgrade), private excursions when they are worth it, more unique experiences. The best decisions for a good balance between experience and budget.
Superior: $140 – $170 per day per person: superior places to stay (boutique), unique experiences, usually private (except when it is a long distance). Trips to the jungle, high mountain trekkings or renting a car also usually fall into this category.
Luxury: $180+ per day per person: nice places to stay (boutique and luxury), unique and private excursions, gastronomically fascinating experiences, etc.
5. When is the best time to go?
Put simply and clearly: it is better not to travel between January and March (due to the rains in the mountains and the jungle), nor when there is a lot of tourism (mid-June to mid-September). While the best are the shoulder seasons, especially from April to early June, since the whole Andes is green!
But the reality is that there are fewer and fewer differences between the low and high seasons, especially in tourist centers such as Cusco.
I consider then, that the decision should be made taking into account your employment situation (if you are your own boss or not) and especially taking into account the type of trip you want. See point 1 (I travel to…).
Now, for more information on how to better prepare yourself for the weather, please don’t forget to check out the following article.
6. Which airline should I travel with?
At a time of questioning about our forms of consumption, it is not a minor point to consider, since our holidays and the choice of our destination will have a great impact on the environment.
The issue is now even more visible thanks to the movement initiated by the young Swedish woman Greta Thunberg, and the trendy topic entitled “Shame to fly” (flyskam) that is gaining supporters who want to reduce their carbon dioxide emissions produced in the air routes.
But until there are large-scale solutions to the most important problems that concern our planet, I consider that balanced and conscious decisions will make us feel good, here are some examples: if you live in Europe taking the train is a great alternative to the use of low-cost airlines and for long-distance flights, the airlines that are listed with the best Dow Jones sustainability indices, are so far the best option:
First KLM / Air France
Third LATAM (our preferred airline in Peru)
Iberia, unfortunately, it does not appear on the list
That’s why we don’t tell you not to fly, but instead to FLY WHAT IS NECESSARY and that’s why we always encourage transportation by land within our territory. This is part of our calculation to determine how responsible your trip is and we let you know through our sustainability report for passengers.
After analyzing these six points you will have a much clearer purpose for traveling and how to make it happen, so, now I simply leave the link that groups all of the possible ways to contact me or my colleagues, who are experts on traveling throughout Peru. We hope to see you soon!
Contact us in whichever way you prefer!
Cover photo courtesy of the Hefting family
Photographs from sections 5 and 6 courtesy of the Andrutsellis-Theotokis family