Peru, 18 days: jungle or no jungle?
January 19, 2014 3:37 AM Subscribe
We're going on what I thought would be a long trip to Peru in April... now that I'm planning the itinerary it seems way too short. Can more experienced travellers answer some questions?
The original plan was to go up north to cajamarca / tucume / huaraz for a week, then fly to Puerto Maldonado, do a small jungle expedition, then spend the last week in Ollantaytambo and Cusco, doing some day hikes in the sacred valley and going to MP of course.
Looking into travel times however, it turned out that travel in the north would take way too long by bus to see all of this in a week. Now we're wondering if it would be better to cross out the jungle part altogether and take a longer, more leisurely 9-day tour of the north by bus, or to make the north trip shorter (just go to Trujillo & Huaraz with assorted day trips there for 5 days) and squeeze in the jungle expedition anyway because it's a must-see.
JUNGLE PRO: it's something different as all the other bits seem to be in the Andes / I really like jungle
JUNGLE CON: maybe it's better health-wise to try and stay 'up high' in the Andes rather than break it with a jungle trip? Huaraz & Cajamarca are 3100m and 2700m up as well, and I've been in Cusco for 4 days once before and suffered from a constant headache, I wouldn't want to double that. + it's not like we're going to see jaguars anyway, so the money the flight and the expedition (quite a lot for our budget) would be better spent on the visit to the north than on viewing otters and caiman?
We really don't want to cut down on our time in the sacred valley. We arrive in Lima March 30th and depart from Lima April 18th in the evening.
(I tried to post this question in the LP thorntree forum but it doesn't appear. I will try again there later, but I appreciate the views of the MeFi crowd as well.)