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Some peru itinerary and transportation questions.

Some peru itinerary and transportation questions.

Old Aug 12th, 2022, 09:30 PM
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Some peru itinerary and transportation questions.

Hi everyone,

I am visiting Peru for the first time in late September. Here’s my current itinerary:

Day 1 arrive in Lima late

Day 2 lima

Day 3 lima

Day 4 lima to paracas

Day 5 paracas to huacachina

Day 6 huacachina to nazca, night bus to arequipa

Day 7 arequipa

Day 8 colca canyons

Day 9 colca canyons, night bus to cusco

Day 10 cusco

Day 11 cusco

Day 12-15 inca trail

Day 16 cusco

Day 17 cusco, night train to puno

Day 18 puno to uros islands to taquile

Day 19 to bolivia



All that is currently booked and paid for is the flight in and the inca trail which is 12 days later. Everything else is open to change. Ok, so I have some questions and please let me know if anyone has answers or opinions.



1. I am landing in Lima on a Monday night at 9:55 PM. At that time, are there any public transportation options to get to Miraflores? Or do you think I should just get a hotel at or close to the airport and go to miraflores the next day?

2. how would you handle the 3 day lima to arequipa itinerary? As in when would you suggest leaving each place to the next one? (evening, morning, etc)

3. do overnight buses need to be booked in advance? How far in advance?
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Old Aug 15th, 2022, 04:04 AM
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Hi dayexday,

I saw your same question on tripadvisor but chose to respond here as the Fodors site is much more user friendly on a phone

To respond to your specific questions;

1. No there are no viable public transport options. I usually arrange a transfer with www.taxidatum.com . Very reliable, uniformed drivers and decent cars. The other alternative is Green Taxis. They have a booth just as you exit the arrivals hall. Prices are similar. Absolutely no point in staying at an airport hotel. All that will achieve is to waste valuable Lima time the next day.

2. Whilst some enjoy those coastal sites, personally, I wouldn't bother. I would check out the bus options using redbud.pe or rome2rio.com to see how the public bus times work out for you. It should be pretty easy to find a schedule that suites and then sort out tours and activities direct with providers or via your accommodation. Alternatively, Peruhop operate a sort of semi guided tour which will be more expensive but could save an amount of organising.

3. You can usually get seats on the better overnight buses - Cruz del Sur, Movil, Ormeńo etc a couple of days in advance but if you want first class (which I would strongly recommend) a week out would be better. If you know you dates fro certain, there is little to be gained by waiting.

A few random observations.

Seems like a well thought out trip. As mentioned above, not a tremendous fan those coastal sites but am a great fan of Arequipa! I would want an extra day there. Great food, great sites (Monasateria de Santa Catalina alone can easily takeout least a half day) . Similarly, I would want an extra night in Colca.

I am not sure but I think you may have to return to Arequipa to get the bus to Cusco.

Not entirely sure there is a night train to Puno from Cusco but, even if there is, it is likely 10x the cost of a bus and rather pointless as you would see nothing. I would suggest taking a day time tour bus as there is a lot to see en route.

No Amazon? maybe you are visiting there in Bolivia.

If you are headed on to Bolivia via Copacabana, I would consider taking your trip on the lake from the to Isla del Sol rather than Tacquile and Uros.

All just my necessarily subjective views based on many, many months of wanderings around Peru

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Old Aug 15th, 2022, 09:55 AM
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1) Agree with using taxidatum, arranged in advance. Nice to have your name up for a first time arrival, and it's door to door. There may be an official airport bus now, I've not used it.

1) For Paracas, the boats to the Ballestas leave in the morning. So it's either get up super early to catch a 4AM bus, or leave at a reasonable hour to make the land tour out to the Paracas Peninsula, spend a night and then boat in the morning. Cruz del Sur from Javier Prado is a good choice.

2) Paracas and Ica (Huacachina) are only an hour apart. I assume you are stopping there to take a buggy ride on the sand dunes in Huacachina. I don't know if you can make a booking ahead of time, but the sunset ride is best. (4PM I think). When I did this route, I booked through the hotel where is was staying in Ica. Taxi between Ica and Huacachina.

3) Nazca, are you stopping for any sights? Multiple travel agents in town, I thought the Aqueducts were particularly interesting. Basically a taxi with a few people. Unlike Lima, it's relatively safe in these coastal towns to hire a taxi on the street). Arequipa it's best to ask you hotel about that.

I have only every flown to Arequipa direct from Lima. Agree with crellston that Arequipa is worth a few days.

As far as bookings for the public buses, I've also gone to the kiosks at the Real Plaza @ downtown Lima near the Sheraton Hotel. I have my own preferences for seat location ( eg the first row upstairs where you can often rest your feet up on the dash board), but at night that can get you headlights in the eyes.


Last edited by mlgb; Aug 15th, 2022 at 09:57 AM.
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Old Aug 30th, 2022, 08:55 PM
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I'll admit that Days 4-6 do seem to be the weak point in your itinerary. I don't know how late you will arrive in Paracas on Day 4, or how early you will have to leave Paracas on Day 5, but there is a possibility that you will have time to do nothing in Paracas but sleep through the night in your hotel. And it appears that you will have only a few hours for Nazca on Day 6; I haven't been there yet, so I don't know how much time you will need to arrange to see the Nazca Lines (as I presume you intend to do).
Paracas, Huacachina, and Nazca may be great places to see if you have the time; but in your itinerary you won't. My suggestion would be to go directly from Lima to Arequipa, say on Day 5. My visit to Arequipa was in 2009, but assuming it hasn't changed too much since then, I would agree with the preceding comments that it's a great city to visit.
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Old Sep 11th, 2022, 04:58 PM
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thanks so much for the replies and sorry for the delayed response. I'm leaving in 2 weeks and am nervous but i have to start planning. In Lima, do you recommend using ubers/taxis? Is the public bus system worth trying? I always prefer public transportation since I think people experience the culture and feel of a city more that way but in some places it's not ideal. From google maps it seems like a lot of tourist attractions are not close to each other.
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Old Sep 11th, 2022, 10:10 PM
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Originally Posted by dayexday View Post
thanks so much for the replies and sorry for the delayed response. I'm leaving in 2 weeks and am nervous but i have to start planning. In Lima, do you recommend using ubers/taxis? Is the public bus system worth trying? I always prefer public transportation since I think people experience the culture and feel of a city more that way but in some places it's not ideal. From google maps it seems like a lot of tourist attractions are not close to each other.
Two of us replied about airport transfers upthread.
The Metropolitano is handy if your origin and destination are near stations and is often faster than a taxi or Uber.


Last edited by mlgb; Sep 11th, 2022 at 10:16 PM.
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Old Sep 11th, 2022, 10:26 PM
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As above. Use the Metropolitano wherever possible. Lima traffic is a nightmare and taxis invariably take a lot longer. We have had several month long stays in the city and have never used taxis to get around. If you do, do NOT hail them on the street but get your accomodation or restaurant to call them.

Load up a Metropolitano card on arrival - all stations are manned and the staff are only too willing to help. If you don’t speak Spanish, use Google translate.

Prebook taxis to and from the airport either through your accommodation or with www.Taxidatum.com
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Old Sep 12th, 2022, 06:29 AM
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I have taken taxis in Lima, for example to get to and from the bus stations. Previously it was recommended to have your hotel call one for you, but with the rise of apps I was told that this is becoming less reliable, and most recently we had to go out to the main street to flag one, which is not generally recommended. After that I would just schedule the pickup from taxidatum to go back to the airport. I have in fact flagged a few taxis by myself when I had no luggage. There are no meters so one must negotiate the fare in advance and in general I would select a nicely dressed older driver if I had a choice (such as taxi back from a bus station). I have also used the informal combis but that was after I had visited Lima many times and understood the system, the City geography and key routes. It is so complicated that I'm not even sure if there is a guide anymore (there used to be). I mostly tried to stay in Barranco since it was a short walk to the Baltra Metropolitano station and from the stops I could then walk to nearly anything I needed, or take a short combi ride. If you stay in Miraflores there were also hop on hop off bus tours which could get you to some outlying places (not sure what the situation is post-pandemic).

Last edited by mlgb; Sep 12th, 2022 at 06:32 AM.
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Old Sep 12th, 2022, 09:50 PM
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thanks again everyone for the replies.

I am staying in "hotel diamond" which is located which is a short walk from old city/plaza mayor. It seems very far from miraflores/barranco and from museo larco which seems interesting. Would i be able to take metropolitano to those sites?

I'm looking at the official map (metrolinemap.com/metro/lima/) and it's hard to tell where everything is. When i use google maps, they suggest to take buses and not the metropolitano
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Old Sep 13th, 2022, 03:11 AM
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Pretty much all you need to know about using the Metropolitano, the stations needed etc. can be found here @ https://freewalkingtoursperu.com/en/...tem-lima-peru/

Your hotel appears to be in the Centro Historico which is worth a day’s exploration but wouldn’t be my first choice of a place to stay . If possible I would consider switching hotels to Miraflores or Barranco which have way more restaurants, bars and things to do. The Centro area is not the safest place to wander at night.
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Old Sep 13th, 2022, 07:08 AM
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i just changed my hotel to miraflores. I thought i preferred centre historico since I'm more interested in history than night life but safety is pretty important.

For Arequipa, are there enough sites to occupy 2 days or is the second day more about taking a relaxed approach?
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Old Sep 13th, 2022, 07:43 AM
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Larco is not near Metropolitano. Depending on exactly where in Miraflores you are now, walking is a possibility to Larco but not to Centro. If it is open, the Amano is excellent and not far from Larco.

IF your budget is not an issue, 3B Barranco is a great hotel for a first time visitor. You may find a better rate if booked direct. (Should be about $55/night direct for the standard room for two nights or more since you are last minute. Includes breakfast and all day coffee, tea and water. Safe street, best staff ever. They have a luggage storage room and 24 hour desk. Short walk to Baltra. They had Metropolitano cards to lend. (Based on a preCovid stay). I used to like to take the Metropolitano from Baltra to the main (Central) station, from there you are near the MALI museum, Real Plaza for getting bus tickets, and can walk down Jiron de la Union to Plaza San Martin and continue all the way to the Plaza Mayor. Several churches along the way.

http://www.3bhostal.com/

https://museopedrodeosma.org/en/visit/
Says to reserve in advance (Pedro de Osma house and collection).

Yes you can fill two days in Arequipa.

Lima Easy is quite a good website but be sure to verify open hours and conditions for entry

https://www.limaeasy.com/lima-guide/lima-culture-guide

Last edited by mlgb; Sep 13th, 2022 at 08:04 AM.
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Old Sep 13th, 2022, 12:15 PM
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Definitely spend two days in Arequipa. One of my favourite cities in South America. The Monasteria de Santa Catalina can take half a day on its own ( in it is now open for evening visits which would be magical).

There always seems to be some sort of fiesta or parade happening there when we have visited.
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Old Sep 13th, 2022, 09:12 PM
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I'll try to spend two days in arequipa. What's your ideal 2 day itinerary? The two musts seem to be the monasteria de santa catalina and the plaza de armas. I know it's the second biggest city in Peru but the tourist sites seem super compact and close to each other which is nice.

Right now, I booked Ibis budget Miraflores which was $110 for 3 nights but can change it and don't mind paying more if it's worth it.
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Old Sep 14th, 2022, 08:01 AM
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In Arequipa

San Camilo Market designed by Eiffel, used to tourists, great food.

Iglesia de la Compañía de Jesús, the arcades around it are also nice.

Juanita Ice Maiden museum if that interests you

Goyeneche house or some of the other old sillar mansions. Some are free entry or converted to shopping arcades

Walk to one of the bridges over the river.

Plaza San Francisco at night

I wasn't a fan of the main plaza downtown, lots of harassment trying to sell you paintings and the Cathedral isn't all that.

There is also Yanahuara but for me that was a secondary sight.

Arequipa is well know for its comida, lunch is the big meal, and if you go too late you won't be able to sample the best of the menu del dia.

RE that Ibis, location is convenient and safe, I have walked through that area many times. Near some good restaurants such as Punto Azul. You can even walk to the Benavides Metropolitano station although the access is confusing. The rooms are probably comparable and both locations are good, but the service and assistance by the front desk and breakfast at 3B might be worth the change.
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Old Sep 14th, 2022, 01:25 PM
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My visit to Arequipa was in 2009, so my recollections are not up-to-date; but I do not recall any harassment in the main plaza, and in fact I found the city to have lived up to the reputation its own citizens have of themselves, that of being cultured and civil. Examples would include an abundance of bookstores, and the traffic lights that played Bach. (The music came from speakers embedded in traffic lights located where streets crossed the city's main pedestrianized avenue -- Mercaderes Street, if I remember correctly.) Of course these details may have changed over the last 13 years, though hopefully the overall culture of the city has not.

In addition to the sights mentioned in the comment above, I would add the Recoleta monastery, a bit to the west of the city center; at least as of my visit there was a great museum devoted to the Amazonian region (which is actually quite far from Arequipa); though there was a lot of impressive stuff, my favorite exhibit was a humble black-and-white photo showing a placid-looking priest preaching to a small group of totally disinterested-looking indigenous men. (I hope it's still there.)

In addition to its discrete "tourist sights," Arequipa, at least as of my visit, was a great place just for strolling around in; here and there within the aesthetic historic center you could catch sight of elaborately carved churches built from the white volcanic rock that so much of early Arequipa was built from. Again assuming this hasn't changed since my visit, one quiet but pleasant spot to check out would be a patio cafe just north of the plaza in the Yanahuara neighborhood, from where you could get great views of El Misti volcano.
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Old Sep 14th, 2022, 02:06 PM
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The harassment was nothing serious. One particular peddler of art had to approach me every single time I walked through the plaza. That was more like what you might see at some of the popular cruise ports and airports in Mexico where you have to run a gauntlet, but it stuck in my memory as it is relatively rare in Peru, as well as being a little bit funny. Mercaderes is a nice street, one of my favorite restaurants was there. I think I was there a few years after you. (IIRC November 2011 on the way to Bolivia).

Last edited by mlgb; Sep 14th, 2022 at 02:11 PM.
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Old Sep 14th, 2022, 02:41 PM
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I cant argue with any of the Arequipa sights suggested above. We tend to stay for much longer periods and just wander around seeing what we stumble across. On one of our visit we rented an apartment in Yanahuara for a couple of weeks. Loved the district, some of the best restaurants we tried were around there ( as mlgb suggested, go early for the lunch specials - and plan on eating dinner late!) However, it is a fair way from the centre so I would skip it if only staying one day. Nice views of El Misti from a couple of miradores up there.

As for accommodation in Lima. I have stayed in both of those places. Ibis I chose mainly because I am an Accor member and had a load of points to spend. Good location close to Larcomar centre, the Malecon for a post prandial stroll etc. Punta Azul mentioned by mlgb is one of my must do places for seafood!

3B is more stylish and teh staff are great. Right across the street from another of my fav restaurants La Caudra de Salvador. Barranco IMHO is the nicer district for wandering around. It has a villagey, boghemian feel to it. Again loads of good restaurants and bars in the streets surrounding the plaza. Still only a 15 min walk to Larcomar in Miraflores.
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Old Sep 14th, 2022, 04:49 PM
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I stayed once at the Ibis right down the block from Larcomar on Larco, I think it is called ibis Lima Larco Miraflores, a different one than chosen by the OP . It seems there are now several different Ibis hotels in Lima.

ibis budget is the one across the street from Punta Azul, at Alcanfores and San Martin. That is an okay location.

There is also another 3-star ibis on Reducto.That location is a particularly crazy busy intersection of major streets, one I would avoid.

When I stayed at 3B I liked to pick up one of the carved turkey sandwiches with spicy sauce and a chicha morada from Mostruos to bring back to the hotel for dinner. There was often a fancy limo pulled over for a takeaway pickup.

https://www.instagram.com/monstruosperu/

Last edited by mlgb; Sep 14th, 2022 at 05:03 PM.
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Old Sep 25th, 2022, 01:17 PM
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hi, some more questions. Is lake titicaca worth it from both the peruvian and bolivian sides? Or should i just visit from one?

Right now i have this planneday 17 Cusco, night bus to puno

Day 18 Puno to uros islands to taquile

Day 19 Taquile to puno to copacabana

Day 20 Copacabana to isla de sol

Day 21 Isla de sol to Copacabana to la paz

Does that sound good?
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