We’ll start by saying that the best time to visit Peru depends on where in Peru you’re planning to travel. Things like weather, crowds, and prices can vary by region and destination. When it’s high season at Machu Picchu, it’s low season on the north coast. When the blue skies and sunshine smile over Lima, count on daily rain showers and thunderstorms in Cusco. So, to answer the question, “when is the best time to travel to Peru?” we’ll instead allow you to decide for yourself based on where you’re hoping to go on your Peru trip.
Best Time to Visit: December to March
Target December to March for any coastal destinations north of and including Lima. The sun will be out, the ocean will be at its warmest all year, and the beaches will beckon you to their sandy shores. It’s also the best time to visit Peru if you’re a surfer as there’s no shortage of steady north swells up and down the coast. Need further convincing? December to March is the only time all year in Lima that you’re likely to catch some consistent sunshine and actually see the blue hue of the sky without a heavy shelf of gray cloud between you and it. Talk about some truly glorious photos on the Costa Verde and along the historic colonial streets of Lima’s center.
Cusco & Machu Picchu
Best Time to Visit: May to October if you want to stay dry, November to April if you want to avoid the crowds
Notoriously, the best time to visit Cusco and Machu Picchu is during the dry season that usually runs from May to October. In our opinion, it’s all relative. The dry season means zero chance of rain ruining your plans, but it also means higher prices, more crowds, and longer lines. For some, avoiding the crowds and price spikes is the best time to visit. You decide. If you do plan to visit this region during the rainy season, however, do keep in mind that the Inca Trail is closed for maintenance every February.
The Amazon Jungle
Best Time to Visit: December to May if you’ll be cruising, June to November if you’ll be lodging
The best time to visit the Amazon Jungle of Peru depends on what you’re there to experience. Are you hoping to cruise the Amazon River channels by river cruise and canoe or do you have your heart set on jungle treks by day and by night. The rain comes standard no matter what time of year you visit, but the shifting water levels will either help or hinder your dream itinerary. The high water season, lasting from December to May, opens up new parts of the jungle to explore by boat, while the low water season from June to November means more trails to wander down for that upclose wildlife encounter.