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Peru

 
 
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Author christravelblog
Partaker
#76 | Posted: 16 Aug 2022 09:53 
I just returned from Peru driving from Lima to Cusco as per my above itinerary approximately. It's PERFECT do-able and it's NOT really NOT dangerous to drive. That's a myth from the past. Really.

carlosarion:
Plaza Armas and Catedral de Lima were fenced and guarded by the police due to labour

Correct; but they do this daily at random times and then it opens the same day again. When I was there last week this just happened after I visited. Convento is under re-construction but interiors you can visit. The plaza armas actually was awesome last week; NO CARS!

carlosarion:
Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu

Yes it's really restricted. There are 4 routes. Of which 3 and 4 kind of go together with either mountain. 1 and 2 are partly the same but 2 is more long.
plan very much in advance! Or take the Belmond train as it includes the ticket already for any of the 4 routes. :-) The train is 500 USD one way; but you have entry for sure............

Author carlosarion
Partaker
#77 | Posted: 17 Aug 2022 00:32 
christravelblog:
It's PERFECT do-able and it's NOT really NOT dangerous to drive. That's a myth from the past

Coming from the Philippines, driving in Peru would be a piece of cake (just kidding hehe).

christravelblog:
but they do this daily at random times and then it opens the same day again

Thanks for sharing your experience! It was different from the day we visited (last Monday). They confirmed a full-day closure and would only open late in the afternoon the following day (Tuesday). It looks like full-day closures would be more common this week, but obviously, nothing is guaranteed. I am hoping that when we get back to Lima, I'd have the same experience as yours.

christravelblog:
Yes it's really restricted

Just arrived in Cusco. Will share later on the experience of purchasing the MP tickets.

Author carlosarion
Partaker
#78 | Posted: 17 Aug 2022 00:58 
Breaking news: I saw that the Ministerio de Cultura has opened the online ticket sales this evening and was able to book MP for 30 Aug. Yay!

Author wojtek
Partaker
#79 | Posted: 18 Aug 2022 03:32 
I realized I didn not share my thoughts on driving in Peru, so I am fixing it right now. I were there in June and drove 5700 km on my own in a rented car, mostly in the mountains. Fantastic adventure, although it must be honestly admitted that it is not the easiest country for drivers. But there is no tragedy, the freedom to move at your own pace and get (almost) where you want is priceless.

I rented a SUV, which I recommend to everyone, because it gives a lot more confidence on Peruvian roads with holes. When doing the Gringo Trail, you will drive almost 100% on asphalt, although holes (some very deep) can appear quite often in this asphalt.

I went far beyond the Gringo Trail, I was on a route where I did not see asphalt for almost 3 days, covering a total of over 400 km with an average speed of about 20 km/h (more on that in my review of Rio Abiseo National Park). On such roads, even an SUV is not enough, you would need an off-roader or pickup. On dirt roads, I destroyed most of the plastic underbody covers, fortunately the tires and metal elements remained intact throughout the trip.

Driving in cities is quite slow and not very pleasant - the streets are narrow, often one-way, and the traffic is large. Lima is a separate category, the city has, in my opinion, badly designed roads, it lacks a bypass and this causes huge traffic jams that cannot be avoided.

Driving in the dark is problematic because drivers constantly abuse long lights. And when it comes to lights, Peru is a slow American, you can have powerful headlights, lights flashing in different colors, etc. Fortunately, you can educate Peruvian drivers a bit, after blinking they usually changed to short lights.

Serpentine fans will feel perfectly in Peru, on a record day I counted 114 of them. Altitude amplitudes can also be extreme, on a record day we started at 2800 m above sea level to climb 4740 m above sea level. and end the day at sea level. The Cuzo-Hidroelectrica route also burns - on the way we enter 4300 to end at around 1600. Getting to Machu Picchu is a separate story, since May 2002 the road access is severely restricted and it is even more recommended to take the train.

Gasoline is quite expensive, and interestingly sold by gallons. Usually 95 gallons cost 22-25 soles. Car washes are ridiculously cheap, I used it twice and, for example, for a comprehensive washing of a terribly dirty car inside and out, I paid only 20 soles.

To sum up - Peru is actually a more difficult country to drive than its neighbors (and only in South America I tested driving in Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay) and most other countries in the world, for me comparable to some countries in the Middle East (Jordan, Iran). But nothing terrible.

By the way - I recommend Enterprise Rental - hassle-free pickup and drop-off. Once, in an extremely cramped garage, I did a medium-sized fender wipe, pointed to a scratch in the rental shop, but they rubbed with paste and did not count anything. Damaged chassis covers also free of charge, although I also indicated them when returning them.

Author carlosarion
Partaker
#80 | Posted: 18 Aug 2022 09:47 | Edited by: carlosarion 
wojtek

Thanks for the advice wojtek! My partner and I would sometimes rent cars when traveling but because I am still recovering from a bad knee injury and my partner has had leg surgery, we decided not to. Your advice would surely come handy for visitors of this site so it's definitely appreciated!

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