Peru Weather and Climate
Peru is a state in the west of South America. It is about 1.3 million km² the third largest state of the continent. Due to the special landscape, it only has about 31 million inhabitants.
It has only about a tenth of the population density of Germany. The neighboring countries are Ecuador and Colombia in the north, Brazil in the east, Bolivia in the southeast and south. To the west, the Pacific forms the country’s natural border.
In addition to dry coastal regions, the country also consists of highlands and mountains. The majority of the country’s area is covered by the rain and cloud forest with 60%. The coastal region consists largely of desert. The Atacama Desert, which is the driest desert in the world, begins at the state border with Chile and extends up to the state capital Lima. North of Lima, the coastal region becomes a little greener as a little more rain falls.
The Andes, which form part of the American Cordillera, begin directly behind the narrow coastal region (called Costa). The Cordilleras are the largest fold mountains in the world and some of them are still volcanically active. They often consist of parallel mountain ranges, some of which are far apart in Peru.
In between is the Peruvian highlands and the famous Lake Titicaca. The mountain ranges are repeatedly interrupted by the mighty headwaters and tributaries of the Amazon, which flow away from the Pacific towards the Atlantic. The highest mountain in Peru is the Nevado Huascarán with 6768 meters.
The dense and almost impenetrable Peruvian rainforest begins east of the Cordilleras. The rivers flowing towards the Amazon are the only arteries here. The largest city in this region Iquitos with 400,000 inhabitants can only be reached from Lima by plane or by boat.
Climate in Peru
The climate in Peru is divided into three different climatic zones. The Humboldt Current creates the hot and dry desert climate on the west coast of Peru. In the South American summer from December to March it is a pleasant 25 degrees. In the winter from June to September there is often a thick fog called Garúa. The coastal strip from Lima to the border with Ecuador has a slightly more humid climate than the desert-like strip from Lima to Chile. There the temperatures vary from 15 degrees in winter to 35 ° C in summer.
In the Andean highlands prevails of April – October the dry season. The daytime temperatures rarely exceed the 20 degree mark, at night there can even be frost. During this time you can take the best photos there. The dry and clear air creates a fantastic foresight. In the rainy season from November to March there is heavy rainfall. The higher you go into the mountains, the colder it gets. The annual average temperature at 3000 m altitude is 16 degrees.
In the Peruvian rainforest, the year-round temperatures are between 20 and 35 ° C, depending on the altitude. As is usual in the rainforest, there is often heavy rainfall in the permanently hot and humid climate.
When is the best time to visit Peru?
The perfect travel time in Peru clearly depends on the specific travel destination as well as personal preferences and activities. On the coast, January through May is the best time to enjoy a swim in the Pacific. The temperatures are mostly around 29 degrees during the day and 20 degrees at night. It is usually quite dry there all year round. May to September is the best time to travel to Peru to visit the Andean highlands and Machu Picchu.
In the then prevailing dry season, the visibility is particularly impressive. However, one should remember that in the highlands the temperatures are only around 20 degrees and the nights can be frosty. Those who want to explore the Peruvian rainforest are largely independent of time. There are hot, humid temperatures and abundant rainfall all year round.
Optimal travel time for the regions
In the following overview you can see the best travel time depending on the region (Peru).
|Place||Best travel time|
|Lima||January, February, March and December|
|Iquitos||May, June, July, August, September and October|
|Machu Picchu||April, May, June, July, August and September|
Temperatures, precipitation, sunshine in Lima (Peru)
|Daytime temperature||26 ° C||27 ° C||26 ° C||24 ° C||22 ° C||20 ° C||19 ° C||18 ° C||19 ° C||20 ° C||22 ° C||24 ° C|
|Night temperature||19 ° C||19 ° C||19 ° C||18 ° C||16 ° C||15 ° C||15 ° C||15 ° C||15 ° C||15 ° C||16 ° C||18 ° C|
|Water temperature||21 ° C||21 ° C||21 ° C||20 ° C||19 ° C||18 ° C||17 ° C||16 ° C||16 ° C||17 ° C||18 ° C||19 ° C|
|Precipitation in mm||1||0||5||0||0||0||0||0||5||0||0||0|
|Hours of sunshine||6||7||7||7||4||1||1||1||1||3||4||5|
The annual average temperature in Lima is 19.4 ° C. For comparison: Munich reaches an average of 8.6 ° C, in Berlin it is 9.6 ° C. The warmest month is February (23 ° C), coldest month of August, with mean values of 16.5 ° C. The maximum water temperature in Lima is 21 ° C. Comfortable bathing is possible at these temperatures. All but July, August, September and October have a water temperature of at least 17 ° C. Bathing is then possible to a limited extent.
The annual precipitation is 13 mm. For comparison: In Munich, 967 mm, in Berlin 570 mm, precipitation is measured annually. There is no rainy season, i.e. months with more than 175 mm of precipitation. You cannot expect snow in any month in Lima.
As our climate table shows, March is the sunniest month with an average of 6.9 hours of sunshine per day. On average over the year, the sun shines 3.9 hours per day. For comparison: In Munich and Berlin, the sun shines an average of 4.7 hours per day throughout the year.
The following larger towns are nearby and have a similar climate: Callao and Huaral.
Sights & attractions
Since most holidaymakers arrive in the capital Lima, you should of course book a city tour in the historic center of Lima. A visit to the Larco Museum is also recommended. Those who like it mystical can make a detour to the Nazca Lines.
In the Peruvian highlands, the old Inca stronghold of Cusco with its overwhelming architecture is waiting to be discovered by travelers.
Not far from Cusco is probably the most famous Inca city “Machu Picchu”. Anyone who is close to the state border to Bolivia should definitely make a detour to Lake Titicaca.