Is Peru Safe for Solo Female Travelers?

Peru offers various experiences with its rich cultural history, vibrant cities, and beautiful landscapes. Like many travel destinations, safety can depend on location, awareness, and behavior. The overall crime rate is relatively high but mostly revolves around theft. Always remain aware of your surroundings and take standard precautions such as avoiding isolated areas at nighttime, keeping personal belongings secure, and not flashing expensive items. Solo female travelers should also take precautions when interacting with strangers. Taxis are a preferred mode of transport. Always book from reputable companies or use a known app. It is generally safe during daylight while participating in organized tours or activities.

Safety index

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How safe is Peru?

Safety at nightUnsafe

During the night, in Peru, solo female walking alone might face some safety issues. Major cities like Lima, Cusco, and Arequipa can be relatively safe, but it is always recommended to use reputable transportation services and avoid secluded areas. Be particularly cautious in areas with high levels of crime. It's also a good practice to inform someone of your whereabouts and expected return.

Public transportationModerate

Public transportation in Peru varies in safety and reliability. Major cities like Lima have reasonable public bus systems and authorized taxi services that are generally considered secure, although they can be chaotic due to heavy traffic. Long-distance bus travel in Peru is popular, with many operators offering a safe and comfortable journey, but it's paramount to choose a reliable bus company. However, theft can be a concern on both local and long haul buses, so it's advisable to always keep an eye on your belongings, especially in crowded situations. It's also not recommended to travel at night due to poorer road conditions and the higher risk of accidents. Always use licensed and trusted transport providers for the sake of your safety.

Street harassmentModerate

Peru has a moderate level of street harassment. While not widespread, instances of catcalling and unwanted attention are not uncommon, especially in busier city areas. As a solo female traveler, it's important to remain alert and aware of your surroundings. It's recommended to dress modestly to blend in with the local women and avoid unwanted attention. However, most locals are respectful and hospitable to tourists.

Petty crimesModerate

While Peru is a beautiful and culturally rich country to visit, it does have a certain level of risk concerning petty crimes like pickpocketing and bag-snatching, especially in crowded tourist spots and public transportation. It is important to be cautious with your belongings and remain aware of your surroundings to mitigate this risk.

Tap waterUnsafe

Drinking tap water in Peru is generally considered unsafe for travelers, particularly those not accustomed to the local microbes. While locals may drink it without any trouble, foreign visitors could face health risks such as upset stomach or more serious conditions like typhoid fever. It is strongly recommended to stick to bottled or purified water during your stay in Peru.

Is Peru safe right now?

When planning a trip to Peru, it is vital to remain cautious due to potential risks including crime, civil unrest, and kidnapping. Make sure to stay updated about the safety situation in the region you are visiting as risk can vary. The US, Canadian, and Australian governments advise a high degree of caution due to the rising levels of crime and potential social conflicts across the country. Strive to avoid social conflicts and strikes, and always ensure your personal security is a priority.
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United States Travel AdvisoryExercise a high degree of caution

The United States Government advises exercising increased caution due to crime, civil unrest, and the possibility of kidnapping. Some areas have an increased risk. Check the full travel advisory.
Last updated: November 15, 2023
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Canada's Travel AdvisoryExercise a high degree of caution

The Canadian Government advises individuals to exercise a high degree of caution in Peru due to the high levels of crime. Additionally, there may be social conflicts and strikes occurring across the country. Check the full travel advisory.
Last updated: January 30, 2024
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Australia's Travel AdvisoryExercise a high degree of caution

The Australian government advises exercising a high degree of caution in Peru overall, due to the threat of violent crime. Check the full travel advisory.
Last updated: February 20, 2024

Travel safety

Overall rating

Rating summary

Things to do

4.8/5

Safety

4.7/5

Food

4.7/5

Budget-friendly

4.4/5

Solo travel experience

From my experience, I can say that Peru is safe for solo female travelers as long as you stick to tourist areas. I visited Lima, Cusco, Colca Canyon, and Arequipa. Also went through 4 day Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. Met so many nice people and had the time of my life.

Posted: February 12, 2024
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Solo travel experience

I traveled to Peru in October and I felt very safe. Obviously, I was aware of pickpocketers and avoided walking alone at night but I never once felt unsafe and there were lots of other female travellers.

Posted: February 9, 2024
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Solo travel experience

I traveled alone to Peru. I visited Lima, Cusco (I took a train to Machu Picchu), made a trip to the Amazon from Puerto Maldonado, and also trekked through the Colca Canyon, Arequipa and Lake Titicaca. I primarily traveled by buses, with the exception of an internal flight to the Amazon. I didn't feel unsafe, but I definitely got a lot of catcalls walking around Lima. I recommend using the same common sense as anywhere else in Latin America, e.g. don't walk alone down dark, secluded alleys (I walked down dark, busy streets in safe areas), keep an eye on your belongings, be careful with your drinks and your cell phone, trust your instincts when dealing with strangers, ask your hotel about anything that raises your questions (e.g. how much a taxi to the airport should cost, etc.).

Posted: December 24, 2023
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Solo travel experience

I visited Ica, Lima, Cusco, the Sacred Valley, a 4-day Inka Trail, Rainbow Mountain, and Humantay Lagoon. I booked things through GetYourGuide. The food is so wonderful, and the people are charming, I never felt unsafe. I also used Airalo for eSIM and it worked great.

Posted: December 5, 2023
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Family travel experience

Peru is absolutely amazing. My sister and I traveled to Peru, feeling absolutely safe the entire time. I highly recommend hiking to the Rainbow Mountain when you are in Cusco. It was a bit of a difficult hike, but it was one of the most important highlights of the entire trip!

Posted: October 19, 2023
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Solo travel experience

I independently visited the following places and here are the impressions I got from them: - Lima: I stayed in Barranco, which is a safe neighborhood, some parts of Lima are okay during the day, but definitely should be avoided in the evening and at night. - Cusco / Machu Picchu: Cusco is overrun with tourists, I didn't feel unsafe, but I was cheated, and the bus driver from Cusco to MP tried to steal from my backpack. - Puno / Lake Titicaca: Puno seemed a bit sketchy, but I enjoyed my stay on one of the floating islands on Lake Titicaca.

Posted: September 17, 2023
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Solo travel experience

My first independent journey outside of Europe took place last year and began in Peru, which was amazing. I felt very safe, it was easy to get around, and the people were charming. I was there when the protests broke out last Christmas and despite the significant inconveniences and confusion related to closures etc., none of the tourists I knew experienced anything dangerous.

Posted: September 13, 2023
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Solo travel experience

I was alone in Peru for more than two weeks. I was a bit nervous, wondering how safe I would be, but honestly, I felt safe as soon as I arrived in Cusco. I also visited Puno, Arequipa, Huacachina, Paracas and Lima and I never felt like I was in danger (just like in any other place, for example, walking down a dark and narrow street alone when there aren't many people around). I didn't notice any issues related to political unrest. Coming here was the best decision, I love this place.

Posted: September 12, 2023
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Solo travel experience

Peru was my first (and hopefully not last) country in South America. I was there alone and I can honestly say that it is a safe country for traveling women. Opinions about Lima are mixed, so I limited my stay to Miraflores, but I really didn't encounter any strange situations.

Posted: September 4, 2023
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Solo travel experience

I felt very safe everywhere I was during my two-week trip. I visited Lima, Paracas, Huacachina, Nazca, Arequipa, Sacred Valley, Ollantaytambo and Cusco. Arequipa and the Sacred Valley were my favorite places. It was easy to get around. In Lima, I used Uber, in Peru I used Peru Hop to Cusco, and in the cities I used taxis. Altitude sickness was really terrible. I felt like dying for 24 hours.

Posted: August 3, 2023
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Local experiences

Meet locals in Peru

Maria

Maria

About Me

Hey there! I’m Mafer (21yo). I’m from Lima Perú, and Ive traveled to the US (Florida) and will be arriving in Europe soon for a exchange semester! (Spring 2024). I’m really excited to hear from you and share some cool experiences!

Speaking

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Mirian

Mirian

About Me

Hello, my name is Mirian, I am from Peru - Lima, I live in the center of the city and if you wish, we can coordinate so that you can stay at my house or be able to meet somewhere, show you a little about my city, we can exchange languages ​​and culture.

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Stay with locals in Peru

Mirian

Mirian

Peru

Can host for:

3 days

About me

Hello, my name is Mirian, I am from Peru - Lima, I live in the center of the city and if you wish, we can coordinate so that you can stay at my house or be able to meet somewhere, show you a little about my city, we can exchange languages ​​and culture.

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Marión

Marión

Arequipa

Can host for:

5 days

About me

Hi! My name is Marion and i love to travel, make friends, animals, dancing, reading and swimming. I'm a child psychologist and going on my first solo trip to Europe this August ( for my bday!) YOU can text me for whatever you need and u can stay in my house up to 5 days!❤️

Speaking

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Upcoming visitors to Peru

Kristina

Kristina

About Me

Hi :) would like to explore the area, grab something to eat or join for a yoga class?

Speaking

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Joycelin

Joycelin

About Me

I am a student at University of Toronto but I will be in Peru this summer for four months doing research for my thesis. Hoping to maybe connect with anyone else travelling alone!

Speaking

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Safety in Peru