Peru Gap Years

Overview and Highlights

Peru is the fourth most populous country in South America and also one of the safest. It has wonderful cultural and ecological diversity and these are just some of the reasons it is such a popular gap year destination.

Of course, highlights such as the former Incan citadel of Machu Picchu and Lake Titicaca are sure to feature on many travellers’ wish lists but a roll call of Peru’s “greatest hits” is a long and varied one. Peru has a very low cost of living, a rich and varied cultural hotchpotch of Hispanic, Quechua and Aymara influences and a diverse mix of ecosystems including rainforests, cloud forests, mountains and beaches.

All in all it is easy to see why so many people put Peru at the heart of their gap year.

We found 8 programmes in our database that matched your search. Choose one below to learn more.

CARE FOR SPECIAL NEEDS CHILDREN IN CAJAMARCA IN PERU

Programme Overview:

Help out at a local children's home in Peru and be a part of improving the lives of the physically and mentally disabled.This program is for those looking to assist this special needs centre in a variety of ways. You'll be part of daily therapy sessions, helping the local staff with disabled care, and interacting with these special children. This programme will give you a new appreciation for life and caring for others!

From: £495
Country: Peru
Continent: South America
Minimum age: 16
TEACH CHILDREN IN RURAL SCHOOLS IN NORTHERN PERU

Programme Overview:

Assist as a teacher of various exciting subjects to primary or secondary schools in rural areas of Northern Peru...Your main objective will be to assist a local Peruvian teacher in their class. The flexible setup of this program allows you to assist the teacher in not just formal school subjects, but also other fun and active extra-curricular activities!

From: £495
Country: Peru
Continent: South America
Minimum age: 16
SPANISH LANGUAGE CLASSES IN NORTHERN PERU

Programme Overview:

Our classes are a great way to learn Spanish and immerse yourself in the local culture, lifestyle and cuisine of Peru. Learning a language has never been so fun!This program gives you the chance to bond and participate with your fellow classmates in a positive learning environment designed to give you individual help from our teachers. These classes will improve your Spanish allowing you to easily spend your time in local Peru.

From: £495
Country: Peru
Continent: South America
Minimum age: 16
MULTIMEDIA INTERNSHIP IN THE AMAZON RAINFOREST IN PERU

Programme Overview:

This 3-month Multimedia Work Experience Internship programme is fantastic for anyone wanting to launch a career in media or even for someone just looking for a career break.You'll receive weekly workshops in writing, photography, filmography and design skills, along with in-the-field training and one-on-one meetings. You'll get to understand the scientific process and what it takes to conserve biodiversity by working alongside conservation researchers in the field ? all in the heart of the Amazon!

From: £4590
Country: Peru
Continent: South America
Minimum age: 18
CONSERVATION AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT IN THE AMAZON RAINFOREST IN PERU

Programme Overview:

Get involved in conservation and community development work on this excellent multi-activity project in the Amazon Rainforest! You'll benefit from professional training and actively assist in the environmental monitoring study at multiple locations.Begin your programme in the Inca city of Cusco where you'll receive an induction and orientation before travelling through the High Andes to the Acjance Park Guard Station and the Cloud Forest. Then you descend into the Amazon via motorised canoe down the Madre de Dios River. The journey to the Project is spectacular, an adventure in itself!

From: £1695
Country: Peru
Continent: South America
Minimum age: 18
ANIMAL WELFARE IN AN ENDANGERED ANIMAL SANCTUARY IN NORTHERN PERU

Programme Overview:

Improve the lives of endangered species native to the coast and jungle of Peru. Support the good works at the centre that supports the Humboldt Penguins!Take part in activities that will help build and maintain safe habitats for vulnerable animals and stop a further decline in their numbers.Efforts to assist Humboldt Penguins continue, but are challenging. Your ongoing help is needed! The energy you put in, will truly help many endangered animals out!

From: £1095
Country: Peru
Continent: South America
Minimum age: 18
CONSERVATION WORK EXPERIENCE INTERNSHIP IN THE AMAZON RAINFOREST IN PERU

Programme Overview:

Are you looking to start a career in conservation research? Are you passionate about sustainability and helping to protect the rainforest? This 6-month internship programme is designed to help students and graduates develop specific career skills in conservation research, community development, and non-profit project management, in the heart of the Amazon!Begin your programme in the Inca city of Cusco where you'll receive an induction and orientation before travelling through the High Andes to the Acjance Park Guard Station and the Cloud Forest. Then you descend into the Amazon via motorised canoe down the Madre de Dios River. The journey to the Project is spectacular, an adventure in itself!Project Overview

From: £6050
Country: Peru
Continent: South America
Minimum age: 18
FAMILY VOLUNTEERING IN THE AMAZON RAINFOREST IN PERU

Programme Overview:

This Amazon rainforest volunteering and adventure experience gives your family the opportunity to get involved in both conservation and social projects in the rainforest and gain a deeper understanding of this complex biosphere and the local communities who live there.Begin your programme in the Inca city of Cusco before travelling through the High Andes to the Acjance Park Guard Station and the Cloud Forest. Then you descend into the Amazon via motorised canoe down the Madre de Dios River. The journey to the Project is spectacular, an adventure in itself!

From: £1195
Country: Peru
Continent: South America
Minimum age: Children - 6; Adult - 13

Gap Year Opportunities

Peru isn’t a member of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, the unofficial list of “first world” or fully developed countries. However, it is often classed as a “middle power” and economic and social development has been fast-paced during the current millennium.

That said, many of the volunteering options that exist in the lowest GDP countries are also available in Peru. Teaching and especially teaching English, is a popular choice for those visiting Peru, whilst jungle conservation, childcare and medical opportunities also exist. Helping those in smaller communities is usually at the core of many projects, although some volunteers may be based in and around Lima or Cusco.

If your time in this captivating country is more of touristic or travelling nature, again, there are many options. Aside from the obvious must-sees already mentioned, the Nazca Lines, the soaring condors of the Colca Canyon and Sacred Valley are all well worth visiting. Nature lovers are sure to be amazed too by the birds and mammals of the Tambopata Reserve, the pumas, sloths and monkeys of Manu National Park and penguins, marine life and boobies of the Ballestas Islands.

If all the adventuring makes you hungry then why not indulge in a local cookery course? Peru’s unique cultural melting pot has created a style of cuisine that is arguably the hippest in the world right now. In 2017 three of the 50 best restaurants in Latin America, including those in top spot (Maido) and second place (Central) were in Lima. If you don’t have time to learn how to cook Peruvian food, make sure you get to sample plenty of it - even the national delicacy of guinea pig, if you’re feeling brave!

Practicalities, Health and Safety

Peru is a safe country with the vast majority of residents being warm, friendly and helpful towards visitors. It is a tolerant society and few gap year visitors will suffer any crime or other unpleasant experience. Indeed, heavy rains and dangerous roads may be your biggest concern.

Information on the various risks, as well as pointers for medical concerns and visa requirements is best obtained via the FCO (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) website.

Visitors should be aware of the risk of altitude sickness and also take the usual precautions with regards water and food. Malaria, Dengue fever, yellow fever and other such viruses are also risks so plan to visit your doctor or local travel clinic at least two months before your trip.

In terms of a visa things are rather simpler, with tourists to Peru usually granted 183 days on arrival. Depending on what work, volunteering or internship you intend to undertake you may need a visa prior to arrival. Check with the Peruvian authorities to be sure.