Gap Years and Backpacking in Peru

Countries  »  Peru

Backpacker Tours
Trek the Inca Trail and other sites with these tours
Conservation Projects
Work on these projects to protect Peru's wildlife
Local Community Work
Help out in poor rural communities on these projects
Teach on Your Year Abroad
Whatever you teach, English or other skills it will all help!
A Guide to Peru
Read up on what to do, where to go and getting off the beaten track
Travel in Peru

Gap Years in Peru

Peru is one of the most fascinating countries in South America. Home to the mesmerizing Inca ruins, an intriguing culture of colour and festivals, as well as the incredible landscapes of the Nazca lines and Floating Reed Islands, there are so many reasons why Peru should be on every gapper’s to-go list.

A trip to Peru wouldn’t be complete without a hike to the UNESCO World heritage site, Machu Picchu. Backpackers can pack their bare essentials and take on the four to five day hike over the 43km Inca trail, where they’ll be rewarded with the amazing site of the 15th century ancient village. You can always take a train or minibus but seeing this incredible sight makes it all that more special when you’ve worked harder to get there.

Machu Picchu

Cusco is the historical city that you’ll pass through on your way to Machu Picchu. Once the site of the Inca Empire, this city has been named the Historical Capital of Peru, and is the place to see the original Inca temples; Qorikanca and the Temple of the Sun. There are many other Inca buildings and foundations here as well as Spanish Colonial buildings, such as the Cathedral of Santo Domingo.

It’s not all sightseeing and history absorbing here though, there’s plenty of space for adrenaline activities as well.  You can go White water rafting and canoeing down the Urubamba River in Cusco, mountain bike along the trails of the beautiful mountains in the Huaraz National Park, and finish off surfing on the waves of the Chicama and Punta Rocas beaches.  

Huaraz National Park

Backpacking in Peru

Peru is a fascinating and beautiful country to travel, and a brilliant place to volunteer.  When it comes to taking a gap year in South America, it should be at the very top of your places to consider.

Backpacker Tours

Backpacker Tours

Complete Gap Years

Complete Gap Years

Multi-Country Trips

Multi-Country Trips

Short Gaps

Short Gaps

Volunteering

On these projects you can help out on a wide range of issues. From teaching children to gaining medical work experience to working in a children's shelter. However you want to spend you gap year, these projects are sure to help you have an amazing time and make some memories that you wouldn' ever get on your average gap year. Make a difference and help out local communities with these projects.

Volunteering in Peru

Care Work & Childcare

Care Work & Childcare

Community Projects

Community Projects

Conservation Projects

Conservation Projects

Work Experience

Work Experience

Advice

Peru has an enormous amount to offer anyone on a gap year - trekking the Inca Trail, visiting the Colca Canyon and the less well known, but just as spectacular, ruins of Ollantaytambo. That's all to say nothing of the huge variety of volunteering projects and the unbelievably barren Atacama Desert. These are just some of highlights of this real South American gem.

Advice for Peru

A Complete Guide to Peru

A Complete Guide to Peru

Walking the Inca Trail

Walking the Inca Trail

Beyond the Beaten Track

Beyond the Beaten Track

Conservation Work in Peru

Conservation Work in Peru

View all our advice on Peru


Map of Peru

Idea of the Month


Conservation Work Abroad

Country Expert

Country Expert - Warrick Howard Featured Image

Warrick Howard

Warrick is our country expert for Peru. He's been there, he's seen it and he's done it...

Warrick has travelled extensively through South America and his two favourite countries are Bolivia and Peru, which is why he's written an amazing guide about them. He's also written a guide on walking the Inca Trail - make sure you give them a read...

So if you've got any questions about South America then give Warrick a buzz.... he may give you a sarcy comment or two but his advice is usually spot on!