I have just had my GAP trip in Peru in March cancelled so im in need of some advise please. I have a flight into and out of Lima and 10 days to see as much as possible. Could anyone help with suggesting good hostels/cheap hotels and the areas that are safe to stay in Lima/Cuzco/Puno?
I think we will fly to Cuzco and then get a bus or train to Lake Titicaca. Also do people recommend doing a guided tour of Machu Picchu or can we just get the train up on our own?
Thanks in advance for anyones help im just a bit desperate to try and get something sorted asap
If you need help with your Peru holiday, you have 2 options book before landing in Peru or on your arrival in Lima.
You can check this hostel in Lima.
If you need more info regarding Cusco you can contact me on -snip-
[ Edit: Sorry, no promos please. Changed property link as run by same company. ]
It sucks. But don't worry, Peru is easy to travel around, even if you don't speak Spanish. You can do the tour to Machu Picchu on your own. Just make sure to buy the train ticket and the entrance ticket to Machu Picchu in Cusco the same day you arrive. For the train ticket, go to the Wanchaq train station (get a taxi, otherwise you might get lost). For the entrance ticket go to the INC office at Museo Garcilazo (one corner of Regocijo Plaza). The latter is in the historic center, few meters away from the main square (Plaza de Armas) so it will be easy to find.
Once at Machu Picchu, you can hire a guide there. It is easy to arrange, just ask for the administrative office there. Regarding accommodation, it is low season, it will easy to find a place to stay, but do some research on the web before so you don't waste your time walking around.
From Cusco you can easily go to lake Titicaca. You can do this journey by train (10 hours) or by bus (6 hours). I highly recommend the bus (Cruz del Sur bus company has a bus in the morning -8:30- so you will be in Puno at lunch time). You can arrange the tour to lake Titicaca the same day of your arrival for following day. Just go to Lima Street, and find a travel agency there.
Have a safe trip,
I work for a travel agency in Peru!
I am sure I can help you!!!
Get in touch and let's talk!
thank you for your help everyone, i have two weeks before i leave for south america from new zealand so trying to get it all sorted asap.
There are so many travel agencies, tour operators in Cusco wanting to take you to Machu Picchu. After many days to looking around and trying to decide, we found out from a few people that the best and cheapest way to go to Machu Picchu is to obviously do it on your own.
We bought train tickets from Cusco - Aguas Calientes (USD98 return on backpacker class). A cheaper option is to bus to Ollantaytambo and catch a train to Aguas from there. Or just bus it all the way, but it won't be as fun.
Stayed a night in a lovely hostel in Aguas Calientes (roughly USD10 depending), and caught the earliest bus at 5.30am to Machu Picchu (USD14 return, or if you are up for it, you can walk back to Aguas and save yourself USD7). The earliest bus is advisable if you want to hike up to Huaynapicchu. They only give out 400 passes a day, so if you want to, you'd have to go straight to the entrance booth to Huaynapicchu once you enter Machu Picchu.
It shouldn't be a problem buying your entrance ticket to Machu Picchu in Aguas (62soles for a student ticket). We got ours the day before at the INC in Aguas. We also hired a guide when we were in Aguas, and we thought it was 20-25 soles well-spent. He was very informative and helpful, nice, kind, useful.....blah blah blah. Definitely a good idea and one of the best guides we've had.
However, I was told that Machu Picchu closes for the whole month of February due to the rainy season and for maintenance. I'm not 100% sure, but you might want to check this out.
All the best.
We did Machu Pichu on our own. I made the train reservations by email and then confirmed by phone. perurail.com . I paid the tickets as soon as I arrived in Cusco 3 days before departure.
From Cusco we took a bus to Chincheros, then a Taxi that took us to Muray and Salineras. Than walked down to the road and caught a mini van to Ollantaytambo. We spent the night there at KB TAmbo, which was excellent, and at 5:30 ( backpackers train, great , better than vistadome)we took the train to Aguas calientes. Perfect timing. We stayed in the ruins all day. Got out only for lunch.
The snack bar is expensive and for U$ 30.00 you can eat at the M-P Lodge. All you can eat, good variety of main dish, salad and desserts, and refills on all beverages ( not alcohol)
We got into the ruins at 8:30 a.m. We took the train back to Ollantaytambo at 7:00 p.m. ( vistadome).
Ollantaytambo is small and beautiful. Some people open their homes for you to visit.
In Cusco we stayed at Hostal Marani. Quiet place, run by dutch people, very clean and in a nice area ( San Blas), nice peruvian staff. Check their web page. They make reservations and take your word without any down payment. It´s not the kind of hostels young backpackers would prefer! so if you are looking for the fun of being in hostels, check on internet. There´s many places.
To visit the ruins, get a tourist ticket, otherwise it is more expensive.
Cusco market is a great place to visit too. Getting around in taxi is a good safe way because they take you wherever you want and wait for you. Local buses that take you to the areas in Valle Sagrado is a good option, although not comfortable.
Good luck with your stay!