Eat as a local in Peru:
As a rule, I try to steer clear of restaurantes turistica. They’re easily identified by oversized menus or chalkboards posted by the entryway with English translations and seats filled with folks who don’t quite look like the locals.
Sure, there’s comforting about pointing to a menu item and knowing roughly what you’re getting in a land of language barriers. But I pinky swear promise that if you put the tiniest bit of effort into dining at a non-touristy destination, nine times out of ten, you’ll reap the benefits of lower prices and far superior food.
How to Imbibe in Peru:
The name brand liquors you know and love at home are pricey in Peru. For example, a pour of Johnny Walker will run 20 soles – or about $7 USD. That may not seem outrageous by US standards, but if you’re imbibing on a budget in Peru, you can make your bar-hopping dollars stretch much further with a few smart choice.
If you insist on drinking cocktails, swap your spirit of choice for a pisco-based beverage. Pisco is a South American liquor distilled from grapes, and cocktails tend run about half the price of American cocktail counterparts. Plus, Pisco packs quite a high octane punch. If you’re really cash-strapped, stick to local beer brands like Cristal, Pilsen Callao or Cusqueña, which rarely cost more than the equivalent of $2 USD.
Written and contributed by Charyn Pfeuffer