Weather and Climate in Peru: Best Times to Visit

Planning a trek in the Andes or an expedition to the Amazon? Here's how to plan your activities around the right season.

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Peru has a varied landscape, with high mountains along its spine, a long coastline to the west, and rainforest to the east. The weather and climate can change drastically depending on where you are in the country.

High Season in Peru

The most popular time of year to visit is from June to August, as these are the driest months in the Andes mountains and you’re much less likely to get caught out by a sudden torrential downpour.

Best Season for Outdoor Adventures in Peru

The Peruvian winter is from May to September. This the ideal time to head out on hikes and other outdoor adventures, especially to the Amazon. However, it is also the peak time for tourism, so prices will be higher, and popular destinations even more crowded.

The exception to this is Lima, which is usually foggy and gloomy between June and August, with low temperatures and drizzle. Luckily Lima is a bit of a party city, with great food and interesting cultural sites, so still well worth visiting if you’re in Peru at this time of year.

December through to March are the warmest months on the coast, so head to the beach to explore Lima and the coastal reserve at Paracas, or take surf lessons in Huanchaco or Mancora.

High-elevation trekking in Peru. Photo credit: iStock

Peru’s Rainy Season

The rainy season is from December to mid-March, during the Peruvian “summer,” so try to avoid hiking in the highlands during this time as flash floods and burst river banks add some very serious hazards.

The Inca Trail, the traditional route to Machu Picchu, is closed every year in February to try to prevent erosion during the rainy season. Machu Picchu is open all year round, but is usually cloudy and wet in rainy season with poor visibility, so it is best visited between April and October.

The Amazon rainforest is always wet and experiences rain throughout the year, but is at its wettest between December and March. Some companies won’t offer camping trips during this period.

Low Season in Peru

The months from September to November and March to May tend to be a good time to visit Peru; it’s technically low season, but the weather is relatively good, and fewer tourists means lower prices.

However, don’t let the weather dictate all your plans, as there’s no guarantee for perfect weather in Peru at any time of the year – especially if it’s an El Niño year, when there is either too much rain or too little.

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