The size and chaos of Peru make it a country that can be quite overwhelming if you show up unprepared. It doesn’t help that Lima might be one of the craziest cities in South America. Lima is the main entry point for most travelers flying into Peru, but let’s be honest, all the good stuff is everywhere but Lima. Peru’s capital is fun for nights out and it certainly has a vibrant personality of its own, but for most travelers, the ultimate goal is Cusco.
If you’re on a tight schedule, flying to Cusco from Lima makes sense, but if you’ve got a little bit of time, where’s the fun in that? Like I mentioned in a previous post, Peru is a backpacker’s paradise. It is one of those countries that you can fly into without having much of an itinerary, but still have one of the best adventures of your life.
One of the best ways to see Peru is with a travel company known as Peru Hop. Bus travel is going to be a staple of any South American backpacking trip, but Peru Hop takes out a big part of the stress of dealing with South American bus stations.
There were quite a few times when traveling in Latin America that taxi drivers would take me to the wrong station intentionally just to be like “oh, the bus already left, but I can take you to the other bus station.” Scammers are unfortunately everywhere in bus stations, ready to pounce on unsuspecting tourists. Chaos and stress are undeniably a part of any adventure but trust me when I tell you that you aren’t missing out on anything by avoiding shady taxi drivers and bus stations.
For travelers looking to see a lot of what Peru has to offer, Peru Hop offers unbeatable packages. The company is also extremely versatile when it comes to accommodating all sorts of travel plans, no matter how long or short. From day trips to multi-country backpacking trips, Peru Hop has something for you.
There is a lot more to Peru than just Cusco and Machu Picchu, and to ignore the rest of Peru would be doing yourself and the country a huge disservice. Some of my favorite adventures in Peru were in places that I had never even heard of prior to actually arriving in Peru. Sure, everyone knows Machu Picchu, and maybe you’ve heard of the floating islands in Lake Titicaca or the famed Nazca Lines, but there is an incredible amount that Peru has to offer that most people might not have heard of.
The trekking and mountain biking in Arequipa, the stunning desert oasis of Huacachina, and the “poor man’s Galapagos” in Paracas were all unforgettable parts of my trip. I would not have been able to fully experience the diverse beauty of this country if I had decided not to venture out of just Lima and Cusco.
For travelers with a lot of time on their hands, taking Peru Hop’s full southern Peru pass is an unbeatable deal. It takes you from Lima to Cusco, stopping in Chincha, Paracas (Islas Ballestas and Paracas Reserve), the desert oasis of Huacachina, the mysterious Nazca lines, the outdoorsman’s paradise of Arequipa, and Puno (Lake Titicaca). The price of $199 is negligibly more than what you would actually pay if you handled all of the bus travel and activities by yourself. Like I said, bus travel will be inevitable while you are in South America. Peru Hop just makes it easier, safer, and infinitely more fun.
Si no hablas español, las guias de Peru Hop hablan inglés muy bien. If you don’t speak Spanish, Peru Hop’s guides speak English very well. That was a major issue I had when traveling in other South American countries. Even though I spoke pretty fluent Spanish, I would never be entirely certain when to get off or where to get off. My first bus ride in Colombia, I got off on the side of a highway by accident because I misunderstood the driver when I asked where the bus would drop us off. In hindsight, I have no idea why I did that, but I was scared, okay? Some buses stop at multiple stops and leave you to fend for yourself once you’re off the bus.
Peru Hop solves this problem by also including free hotel and hostel pick up and drop off at every stop, and you can hang out in each stop as long as you feel like before picking right back up where you left off. The few dollars you might save by booking all the buses yourself will definitely be lost as soon as you add up all the taxis you have to take to and from the bus stations. Peru Hop really does take the stress out of traveling. Dealing with shady taxi drivers, hectic bus stations, and the language barrier can get old and frustrating so the ease of traveling with Peru Hop can give you an adventure of a lifetime with a lot fewer headaches.
Peru Hop also includes a number of free side trips that most travelers would never know about or ever get a chance to see otherwise. These include exploring secret underground tunnels in Chincha, a pisco vineyard tour, a trip to the pre-Inca citadel of Pachacamac, and more.
You’ll make some great friends while on Peru Hop, and over 50,000 passengers from 85 different countries have trusted Peru Hop to take them through this incredible country. My friend Curran even met his German wife through Peru Hop.
I know what you’re thinking. Yes, you can probably figure it out by yourself, eventually. Yes, you might be able to save a few dollars, but it will quickly be made obvious why Peru Hop was given the 2017 Traveler’s Choice Award by TripAdvisor and holds a 96% rating among travelers. A Peruvian guide on every bus, discounts on hostels and hotels, accommodation pick up and drop off, and unforgettable friendships with other travelers will make your Peruvian experience priceless.
If you want to book a trip through Peru Hop, check out their website and browse through the possible programs. There will definitely be an adventure within your timeframe and budget.
My friends who recently took on Peru with Peru Hop made this incredible video of their Peruvian adventure. Check it out below.