What is the weather like in the Ecuadorean and Peruvian Andes?
Temperature in the Andes depends more on the altitude you are visiting than the season. The higher up you go, the cooler it gets. It also depends on the time of day. Quito at 2800 meters is sometimes called ‘The City of Eternal Spring’ as it has a year round fresh climate that never gets too warm or too cold. It also depends on the time of day. In the mornings it is cooler warming up as the day goes on and then cooling down as evening falls. In Quito you can expect daily highs of 20 ° (68 F) and lows of 8° (48 F). For Cusco, a greater range, with highs of 22°and lows can sink as low as 1 °.
When is the best time to visit the Ecuadorean and Peruvian Andes?
The seasons are more marked in the Peruvian Andes where November – March are the rainiest season, with the Inca Trail closing for renovation in February (the wettest month). For guests thinking about travel to Peru, we would say to avoid if possible the months of December, January and February. However in Ecuador the seasons in the Andes are less marked and more unpredictable and in recent years haven’t really followed the patterns they should. So for guests travelling to the Ecuadorean Andes we don’t really factor in time of year as the seasons no longer behave as they should! Historically the best weather in the Andes for both Ecuador and Peru is May through to October when it is cooler but dry with the best chance of clear blue skies and great views.
What to pack for the Andes?
In the Andes layers work well, with a warm layer for morning and evening. Although warm in the daytime the temperature at night in the Andes can drop down to 1 or 2 degrees. We recommend wearing long trousers and layers on top so you can respond to changing temperatures.The higher you go the cooler it usually gets!
T-shirts, long sleeved jumper and light fleece jacket is usually enough, though if you are going to places that are higher than 2800 meters (which is the altitude of Quito) you may wish to bring a warmer jacket. A great option we have found are down packable jackets which are very light, but useful if it gets cooler in an evening. Attire is very informal, though some people do like to bring a lightly smarter change of clothes for the occasions when you eat meals in restaurants, though it is still casual.