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Peru in november but have lots to ask....

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1. Posted by johnstar (Budding Member 53 posts) 10y

johnstar has indicated that this thread is about Peru

Hola a todos,

I have a trip planned to Peru for 3 weeks starting on 20 November but as yet i havent booked any flights or hotels.

I plan to stay in Miraflores for approximately 12 days and then over to Cuzco for 11 or 12 days depending on prices.

I have seen the cheapest flights with Opodo, ebookers and STA travel which vary from £650 to £750 pounds return although i have no idea what to expect from "KLM Airlines" or "Iberia" could anyone tell me what their service is like for quality and comfort?

The things to see that are essential in my opinion would be the Inca Trail and Machu Picchu in Cuzco (but i've heard a guide and tour operator is necessary which can be pretty expensive) is there any chance me and my girlfriend can walk the Inca trail for a few hours to reach the Machu Picchu that way?

I have an idea already of where the bars, restaurants, live entertainment and cinemas are in Miraflores and Cusco but if anyone has some good recommendations on the best places in town for food and entertainment then i would welcome them gladly )

As well as Machu Pichu i also intend on paying a visit to "Parque Nacional Manu" and also to see "Lake Titicaca" and surrounding areas.

I would really love to see the Naza Lines in Ica and the surrounding Sand dunes as it looks like a lot of fun and a great experience but i heard the flights over the lines are extremely limited and are quite expensive so if anyone has any opinions on this i would appreciate them very much.

Every time i go to another country i always seem to lose my luggage due to having to collect from other terminals although this time my main and only concern is actually getting from the airport to a hotel in Miraflores reliably and for a fair price (i heard the yellow cabs with numbers on the top are best for this?)

If anyone has any suggestions regarding any of the above or recommendations then i would be extremely grateful.

Many Thanks

Ciao

2. Posted by Degolasse (Travel Guru 823 posts) 10y

12 days in Miraflores? What are you doing there? It's a nice spot and all but not the kind of place you want to spend half of a three week trip. Of course if you are there for a reason that a different story all together.

For the Inca Trail, no there is no way you can just do a bit of it, nor can you do it on your own. It requires a guide which is indeed very expensive. Best to book it in advance, though as I've never done it, I can't recomend a company. THe best you can do on your own really is to walk the trail up from Aguas Calientes - takes about an hour and is straight uphill to the ruins. An alternative trail to the Inca trail is Salkantay. It's a fantastic 4 day walk ending in Aguas Calientes. When I was there in May it was possible to do it on your own though I heard they've since put new rules in place to extract more cash from us foreigners. So it may not be possilbe anymore, but it's something to look into as an alternative.

For Ica, all I can say is don't miss it, but head to the town of Huacachina just outside. It's a fantastic little oasis and a good place to relax for a couple days.

Lake Titicaca is great, but in my opinion even better on the Bolivian side. If you find the time, I would recomend heading over to Isla Del Sol via Capacabana, Bolivia. If you only stay on the Peru side, make sure you take a tour out to the Islands that allows you to stay on the Islands for a night. THere is too much to see just for one day.

Finally, about taxis to Lima, I found the easiest way was to book a hotel/hostel that provides transportation. It's usually only a dollar ot two more (or sometimes not even more) and you don't have to worrry about being hassled and trying for find a trusty taxi.

Hope some of this helps

3. Posted by TylerJames (Respected Member 333 posts) 10y

12 days in lima is not the best place in peru to spend that amount of time, at least in my opinion. i was their in july for 5 days and nothing but overcast, they say the sun never shines in the winter but maybe its nicer in the summer. iñd check out arequipa its a really nice laid back and somewhat off the main tourist trail.

as for the inca trail i´d go for Aguas Calientes, by far the cheapest way to get to machu pichu.

4. Posted by johnstar (Budding Member 53 posts) 10y

Thanks very much for the response Degolasse, i appreciate it a lot...

Well for starters i chose Miraflores to stay half of my trip as its located very close to Lima Airport and i've also heard many many good things about the district, plus i know the local entertainment is very good too.

Thanks so much for the advice about Machu Picchu that has cleared about the doubt regarding the hike of the Inca trail.

Im definitely intent on seeing Ica and the Nazca lines but that may have to wait until a further trip as there will plenty to keep us occupied in Miraflores and Cusco but if we get a chance we will head over to Ica and Arequipa too.

5. Posted by adv3nture (Budding Member 49 posts) 10y

12 days in Miraflores? Definitely rethink that. I don't care how great the Miraflores entertainment is, i've been to Miraflores and Lima... and it is good for a day or 2 as a stopover to other locations in Peru but it isn't where I would spent my time.

Spending that amount of time in Lima doesn't do justice to the many fantastic places you could be visiting in Peru.

Use Lima as a stopover for arriving and departing the country, and maybe take 2 days or so to explore Miraflores... but with so much to do in Peru, 12 days is entirely too much when you only have 3 weeks.

- Machu Picchu
- Cusco
- Ollantaytambo
- Pisac
- Amazon Basin (Puerto Moldonado / Tambota River area)
- Nazca Lines
- Colca Canyon
- Lake Titicaca
- Huaraz and the Cordillera Blanca
- Manu National Park
- Lares Trek

The other poster about the weather in Lima is correct. I spent several days in Lima in May and it was always overcast, and we encountered a lot of fog which caused tons of flight delays during our connecting flights out of the Lima airport.... not to mention the stench in the morning that the fog (smog?) brought.

Miraflores is nice for Lima, but with the usual KFC... McDonalds... Burger King and Pizza Huts all over the place... coupled with an unbelievable amount of thrift stores... it isn't what I visited Peru to see. I can see all that in my own city, minus the crazy amount of thrift stores with stacks and stacks of jeans.

Peru is a BEAUTIFUL country, one of my favorites, and I can't wait to go back... but if I only had 3 weeks, I would spend as little time in Lima as possible.

To me, spending 12 days in Lima when you are in Peru for 3 weeks is a bit like spending 12 days in Detriot if you come to the United States for 3 weeks.

BUT while you are in lima you MUST eat at La Trattoria di Mambrino, an excellent italian restaurant on Manuel Bonilla in Miraflores. It is FANTASTIC. They make all their own pasta, it is great. The owner is very entertaining, and his wife is a desert chef and makes all the deserts... which are also fantastic. Highly recommended.

[ Edit: Edited at Sep 15, 2006 4:49 PM by carlhancoc ]

6. Posted by Tedel (Budding Member 16 posts) 10y

Hi,

Well, I'm Peruvian so maybe my tips will be useful for you. Here you are:

First, take a better look at the tourist attractions in Peru, 'cause I think you are missing a lot. I recommend you these two websites to that: www.peru.info and www.heptagrama.com/en/info_mnd_per_intro.htm. One is from the government, the other is from a private company.

About taxis, you'd better trust companies you might find on the yellow pages. Taxis on the streets are honest as well, but there has been a few assaults these days, so you'd better trust a company.

About Lima, it is a nice city, but you will only need 3 days to see the main square and the main museums. Try to spend the rest of the time somewhere else. Beware of drug dealers in the main square and be careful of thieves around it. Downtown Lima, though nice, is not very safe.

About the weather, you will arrive in spring. In spring the coast is nice (Lima, Ica, Nazca) but in the Andes and the Amazon rainforest you will be arriving in the beginning of the wet season.

Any other question? Feel free to ask. I'd be glad to answer you.

7. Posted by johnstar (Budding Member 53 posts) 10y

Well i have just got up to speed on everyone's feedback and i want to thank you again for all your comments...

Based on the latest comments from carlhancoc & tedel regarding spending 12 days in Miraflores, i now realise i wouldn't be getting the maximum out of my trip if i stayed there for 12 days so instead i think i will change that to maybe three or four days and then move on to the White City of Arequipa and that way we will be fairly close to Nazca and could maybe see the lines en route to Arequipa.

We will then continue over to Cusco after spending around 10 days in Arequipa for the remainder of our trip.

Thanks for the recommendation on the Italian Restaurant (im sure that will be a nice surprise for the missus hehe) i look forward to checking that out.

I would love to head to the north of Iquitos and to the jungle but on this trip i think that the time and money would be too much of an issue.

I have read so much about Miraflores, Arequipa and Cusco and they all sound like fantastic places, so i just can't wait to get over there now :)

Thanks again to all that have posted

8. Posted by flo jo (Respected Member 414 posts) 10y

I stayed in Lima Miraflores for three days, and I was starting to get bored with it.

Concerning the Machu pichu dont even think just do it. That my best experience in south Aerica. it goes for four days you are died tired during the four days but it´s a life time experience.