Peru is a country of contrasts that is perfect for a family adventure. You can hike the Inca Trail, and visit the Inca capital, Cusco, with its incredible archaeological sites, and excellent tourism infrastructure with a plethora of activities for all the family. It goes without saying that family tours are significant because these are times to create beautiful memories and share them with your loved ones, while you get away from your daily routine. Traveling with the complete family can be just as wonderful as it is exhausting, however, as it poses a number of challenges for all family members. From choosing the right accommodation to keeping young children, teenagers, and adults busy. If you are planning a trip to Peru, then this destination is incredible as it is one of the most biodiverse countries in the world, with endless options to enjoy. So to help alleviate that stress, Here is our guide to your perfect Peru family vacation!
A family holiday in Peru is a once-in-a-lifetime trip, so it’s important to go when your children are old enough to appreciate the experience. While older children may enjoy a trip to Machu Picchu and can get more out of the experience, the last thing you want to do is chase a two-year-old around all the time. Visiting Machu Picchu is a very well-organized activity and children can’t just climb over all the ancient stones and rocks. If you are traveling with younger children, take them to the lesser-visited Inca sites like Pisaq or Tipon, so they can play hide-and-seek and be Indiana Jones in Inca ruins, all day long without the crowds of more popular touristic sites.
The school holidays in March-April are one of the best times to go on a family holiday in Peru. It’s just after the rainy season when everything is looking gloriously green. April-October is generally considered the dry season in Peru. That’s why the school holidays in July and August are another great time to visit Peru as a family. It’s the Peruvian winter, so expect warm blue-sky days followed by chilly and clear star-filled nights. December, January, and February are the wettest months in Peru, especially in the highlands. This is also the worst time of year for mosquitoes in the Amazon region!
Trekking in the Andes
Trekking in Peru can be orientated around which members of your family can do what. You can hike for 4-6km a day and spend the night in a tent. Or you can trek greater distances while the kids sit on the back of a horse. It’s all about hanging out with the guides and making connections with people from other cultures. Just make sure you take every precaution to avoid altitude sickness and sunburn.
Visit the Amazon
The Amazon lodges we work with are crucial for helping to protect the surrounding rainforests. They also provide work for local people and encourage a better understanding of conservation. This type of accommodation is ideal for families visiting Peru. There are loads of child-friendly activities and play areas, as well as opportunities for kids and adults to go off and do their own thing.
It’s easy to get carried away when preparing for a trip to Peru. However, managing your children’s expectations about what they will experience while they are there. For example, when it comes to wildlife watching in the Amazon is an important part of appreciating the experience. You will see plenty of monkeys, turtles, and maybe tapirs, giant otters, and capybaras; just don’t expect to see many jaguars. Guided night hikes are best for listening to croaking frogs and spotting insects and spiders, including tarantulas.
Hang out in Cusco
Cusco is a really well-set-up city in Peru where you can take it as easy or as active as you like! There are plenty of activities for the children such as a chocolate-making class, a dinosaur activity park, plenty of children-friendly eateries, fluffy llamas on the streets, and fabulous ice cream shops. Cusco has perfect children-friendly options that may help children relax in between excursions.
Visit Ica and Huacachina
This region just south of Lima, is filled with fun activities for the children. The small oasis town of Huacachina is well known for its massive sand dunes and dune buggies, which are always excellent activities for the little ones. They can even try their hand at sandboarding! The region is also close to Paracas and The Ballestas Islands, which is a wonderful day trip to see local sea life such as sea lions, seals, and lots of seagulls and other birds!
Worry about safety
Health clinics and doctor services are very good in Peru. In fact, as a whole, the country’s infrastructure is excellent. It’s very easy to get around, particularly by local transport. Also, the activity guides all speak English and are excellent with kids. They instantly make you feel like you’re part of a big family. All the activity equipment used for rafting, for example, adheres to high safety standards. However, the only way you can guarantee this level of safety is to visit Peru on one of our activity packages, specially designed for children of all ages!
Worry about the food
There’s plenty of kid-friendly food to eat in Peru. For fussier eaters, you can find chicken, chips, and pizza without too much trouble. There’s also loads of fruit and vegetables grown over here. Peru covers several eco-zones so there’s a variety of produce grown practically all year round, including over 150 different types of potato. The lodges provide some lovely food and you’ll be served three-course meals on the treks, with a choice of things to eat. In fact, the local guides and camp cooks take real pride in serving excellent meals to trekkers.
Avoid the local markets
Markets, such as the one at Pisaq, are amazing places and not to be missed. This is where you’ll see guinea pigs and Peruvian handmade products for sale, as well as chickens running around everywhere. Just be prepared to answer potentially awkward conversations about why the guinea pigs are there. Peruvian children are always hanging out at the market; it’s the essence of South American street life. Markets are colorful, loud, and fascinating places to visit as a family. You can pick up plenty of delicious food, too, like fresh fruit or sugar-covered churros to dip in thick hot chocolate and the freshest of fresh fruit juices.