Health risks vary depending on whether travelling to altitude in the Andes (e.g. Cuzco and Machu Pichu), the Amazon Jungle, or other destinations. Many travellers to Peru also visit Bolivia and Ecuador/Galapagos Islands – advice below may apply to these destinations as well.

The following information provides some broad and general guidelines about health risks and recommendations for travel to Peru. This should not be taken as a substitute for a personal consultation with one of our travel health doctors, whose advice will be specific for you and your trip and may include some things not mentioned here.

  • Plan Head - Calendar/Itinerary?

    Six to eight weeks out from departure is a good time to have a travel health consultation. You may need blood tests to check immunity to diseases or need a course of vaccines like rabies for example, and this gives you plenty of time to get everything completed. If you are travelling sooner however it's not too late for an appointment, simply make one as soon as you can.

  • Mosquito's and Bugs

    Mosquitoes transmit a number of viruses including Yellow Fever, dengue and zika. While there are medication options to reduce the risk of malaria, mosquito avoidance is the only way to prevent many of these diseases.

  • Eating/Drinking

    Travellers diarrhoea, giardia and dysentery are just some of the illnesses caused by contaminated food and water. Tap water in Peru is generally not safe to drink.

  • Vaccine Recommendations

    As well as Yellow Fever and being up to date for routine childhood vaccines such as tetanus, measles and Hep B, the following vaccines are also often recommended – hep A, typhoid, rabies, cholera and influenza. Decisions regarding which are most appropriate depend on duration and nature of travel, itinerary, age and underlying medical conditions.

List of Common Health Issues

  • Yellow fever

    This is a very serious but rare mosquito borne disease. Most travellers to Peru require or are recommended the vaccination either for disease protection, prevention of international spread or for bureaucratic reasons. An internationally recognised certificate is issued as proof of vaccination and should be presented when requested at border crossings.

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  • Malaria

    Risk of this mosquito born parasite depends on itinerary/season. The need for preventative medication should be discussed with one of our doctors. Any fever after travel to the Amazon requires a blood test to exclude malaria.

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  • Zika virus

    Caused by the same mosquito as dengue fever. Because of the potential effect on the unborn foetus, pregnant women should avoid travel to Peru, and all women of childbearing age and/or their partner should seek specific advice before travel to this country.

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  • Altitude sickness

    Those going to Cuzco/trekking in the Andes should seek advice about prevention and treatment of altitude sickness, get fit and have a physical check-up prior.

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  • Hepatitis A

    Hepatitis A vaccination is usually recommended for travel to Peru.

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  • Typhoid

    A food and water borne disease, typhoid vaccination may be recommended.

  • Rabies

    Pre-travel vaccination may be recommended and should be considered well before travel (at least three weeks is required). Thoroughly flush and disinfect wounds and seek prompt medical care and post exposure vaccinations after animal bites and scratches.

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  • Cholera

    An oral vaccine available for the prevention of cholera which also reduces the risk of travellers diarrhoea, is often taken by those wishing to significantly reduce their risk of gastro.

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  • Dengue fever

    Increasing in incidence in many parts of the world, dengue is a serious mosquito borne disease.

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  • Influenza

    Influenza is one of the most common vaccine preventable illnesses in travellers and is recommended for travel to most countries.

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  • Travellers’ diarrhoea

    Observe strict food and water safety precautions. Consider taking a water filter and well stocked medication kit with guidelines for self-treatment.

    Read More

Latest Health Alerts

  • COVID 19 (Coronavirus)

    March 29, 2020

    As there is no non-essential overseas travel at this time this article will simply remain as an information resource for COVID-19. See our main COVID-19 page for more detailed information. We hope to be able to inform our travelers once again after this crisis passes. The links below remain trustworthy

  • Sri Lanka – Dengue Fever

    January 9, 2020

    Over 48,000 cases of dengue fever have been reported in Sri Lanka since 1st October 2019, a significant increase in incidence. Travellers should observe strict mosquito avoidance measures, particularly during daylight hours.

  • Solomon Islands – proof of measles vaccination required

    December 19, 2019

    As a result of recent outbreaks of measles in various countries, the Solomon Islands' will be requiring arriving travellers from/via American Samoa, Australia, Fiji, New Zealand, Philippines, Samoa, or Tonga to show proof of measles vaccination, effective December 28th 2019. Vaccination needs to have been at least 15 days prior and