Hi! I am doing a 2 week trip from Lima to Quito with 2 girlfriends. We are hoping to see Machu picchu, amazon, lake tititaca (spl?) and anything recommended. Is it realistic to do all in such a short period of time? Any tips/ advice/ transportation tips would be much appreciated?
[ Edit: Edited on 13-Jul-2012, at 20:40 by Jenna2726 ]
I know you have plenty of time but I would prefer flights where possible rather than spending a long time on buses.
You can get a morning train to MP and to be honest, see everything in one day and get back to Cusco in the evening.
Cusco has plenty of travel agents and they can book your Amazon trip, Lake Titicaca, Nazca, etc as well as onward to Quito for you.
Do spend some time in Lima. Most arrive then leave, seeing nothing:
The Miraflores area is the best place to stay. Taxis are often ordinary cars with a bit of cardboard in the window with "TAXI" written on it but they are OK, and cheap.
Thanks for all the great advice! Any suggestions on what route we should take (i.e Lima to Titicca to machu to...?) & where do u recommend we go to see the amazon/ rainforest? I was looking at Iquitos?
Also.. Do you recommend u get travelers checks? Being cash? Or hope I quickly find an ATM?
Your trip sounds awesome, Machu Picchu is definitely a must! I traveled to Peru a little over a year ago with some friends and we had a blast!
If I were you I would definitely not use travelers checks, they are way more of a hastle than they are worth. I think using cash is the easiest, especially if you plan to travel through some of the more rural areas, which it sounds like you are! You will find it easier to just use ATMs and cash, it's also quicker. Make sure though since you are going to be traveling by different types of transportation that you have lots of smaller bills though. In some places they might not have change (or even accept!) bigger bills.
I agree with Cyberia, just look up different travel agencies in the area, there are definitely a lot of them in Cusco because they get so many tourists going to Machu Picchu. Travel agents are really helpful too because most of the time they know the easiest and cheapest way to get somewhere, and the really good ones usually have suggestions on what you have to see in all the different areas where you are going! Hope this was helpful!
Last year when I traveled through Peru I used the Dos Manos Travel Agency (www.dosmanosperu.com) and was very pleased with them, I would suggest looking into them if you are looking to use a travel agency, but like kelley23 said, there are definitely a lot around there to choose from.
Again I agree with Kelley23, definitely don't use travelers checks, they are outdated and hard to use. Stick with cards and cash, it's just easier...
Have a blast on your trip and definitely try and look for some of the less tourist filled places too. I know that when I was there, if you find a more local restaurant, you are bound to get better prices and better, more traditional foods.