Things I wish I knew BEFORE I went to Peru


14.  You aren’t in Americanized Cabo San Lucas. Most of the people will be speaking Spanish in Peru. I know VERY LITTLE Spanish and I made it work with a lot of pointing, laughing, and awkward conversations, but I find that aspect of travel fun. If you don’t enjoy that, I’d suggest getting a translation book.
15.  Don’t get scammed!  Upon my arrival to Cusco I had a lady greet me telling me she could get me an amazing deal to Macchu Picchu. After taking a taxi all the way over to her hostel, she really couldn’t get me that deal at all! They will tell you anything to get you in the door. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!
16.  There is a serious lack of warm water in most of the hostels in Peru. Always test your shower first, and if it’s freezing, go tell someone at the front desk. Often times they can adjust the temperature. If you’re staying at a luxury hotel, you might luck out on this.
17.  In Cusco, you can get a 1 hour full body massage for about 15 soles ($5 American dollars)! It’s FANTASTIC!

The feeling of pure joy you will have after receiving a 1 hour massage. And TRUST me, after Machu Picchu you WILL want one.

18. I assumed that wifi might be hard to get, but I didn’t realize to what extent. While the wifi might be a little spotty in your hotels/hostels, and there is certainly no wifi walking around the city, there are definitely quite a few restaurants and pubs that have wifi.

19.  While in Cusco, there are actually a plethora of tour groups doing very similar bookings for Machu Picchu and other excursions.  Walk around and see who has the lowest price! I can tell you I went with American Inca Trail. They are bar none the BEST when it comes to customer service and organization!

20.  Don’t worry about tipping! It’s not necessary.  Well, at least a local told me that so I went with it.

21.  You will want to get yourself a proper pair of hiking boots before you try to hike Macchu Picchu. Yes, people have walked up there in flip flops, but I refuse to believe they did more than the one day up the mountain. I did the 3 day trek and there is NO WAY I would have survived that in flip flops. Be prepared! Unsure how to pick the right pair of hiking boots? Check out the awesome infographic from Walsh Brothers Shoes below.

The Ultimate Guide to Hiking Boots-Infographic (3)


Have you been to Peru? If so, can you add to this list in order to help someone else who may be going soon? What do you wish you knew before you went to Peru?


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12 thoughts on “Things I wish I knew BEFORE I went to Peru

  1. Nasir

    Hi Bobbi.
    First, thanks for your virtual hug, really giving a very warm feelings 🙂

    Secondly, thanks for sharing your wonderful experience you shared here. Article very well written & images are good but needs little improvement (don’t mind just my opinion).

    Great & thanks for the share 🙂

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  3. Zoe

    Have you booked the inca jungle trek in advance?I will go to Cusco this May,and consider if I need to book it through email.And how much you get for inca jungle trek 3D2N?

  4. Katie

    I’m in Peru now. Sometimes the hot water needs to be sacrificed for water pressure or vice vers as they do not have water heaters like in the US. Also, as soon as the sun goes down during the cold season it can get COLD and most houses/restaurants don’t have heating or AC. Just some things to keep in mind when packing. Also, a UV light is pretty inexpensive ($45-50) and makes the tap water drinkable so you don’t have to worry about bacteria and such.

  5. julie Quinto

    I must say you have high quality posts here! I could have sworn I’ve been to this site before but after browsing through some of the post I realized it’s new to me.
    Anyhow, I’m definitely delighted I found it and I’ll be book-marking and checking back frequently!

  6. April

    Great tips! Even being prepared as I was for the elevation in Cusco, I still found myself curled up attached to a oxygen tank with the worst elevation sickness I have ever experienced. After spending 3 days in the Sacred Valley, I still hadn’t fully acclimated, so it is wise to have at least one day in the trip to just do nothing upon arrival to get the body used to it. The Coca tea certainly does help some and luckily my hotel had it free in the lobby at all times. And I can’t imagine doing Machu Picchu in flip flops! Even if you take the bus up the hill and only tour the site, it is so rocky and uneven…..hiking boots are the only way to go!

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