The size of this nation and its natural features can make navigation difficult. Traveling by train is limited and only provides access to the most popular routes. Ground transportation can require several days and is often uncomfortable. Flying offers a good option if one is limited on time. However, in certain places the intercity bus is the only real option.
There are commercial airports at several major destinations within the nation which allow travelers to cover great distances and other barriers in a limited time. All Peruvian cities are not directly connected by the air. Some destinations may require a tourist to fly to the closest airport and take a long boat ride in the jungle. Many of the airlines connect in Lima. Tourist should book their flights several days before departure. Always arrive at the airport a minimum of 45 minutes before the scheduled flight to ensure the airline does not bump you.
PeruRail offers four passenger train routes along scenic and popular journeys. Traveling by train connects passengers with Machu Picchu, the Sacred Valley and Cusco. In addition to PeruRail, there are two newer tourist routes connecting the Sacred Valley and Machu Picchu.
Traveling within cities can be done by taxi or bus. Taxis are more convenient but also more expensive. Before getting into a taxi, it is important to know local customs. In Lima, taxis are not regulated and one may encounter both licensed options as well as unlicensed. There are no meters so passengers are expected to negotiate the cost before entering the cab. In Cusco, taxis must use the standard pricing code.
Buses provide a cheap option that is very popular among tourists and locals. Many locals only use buses for transportation. Tourists will find several lines that compete for business and operate their own private bus stations. Those unfamiliar with the system can easily become frustrated when trying to figure out this system. Luggage theft is an issue on many of the lines.
Although renting a vehicle can provide more independence for the traveler, it is not always the best option. It can be expensive and when traveling between cities one may encounter difficult terrain. Regulations for rental vehicle require drivers to be a minimum of 25 and have a passport and driver's license. A credit card is often required for deposit.
Peru travel is both fun and exciting, but can also present problems. Before departing on the journey, know how you plan to move between locations. Take time to research the possibilities while also noting the warnings provided by the US State Department.
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