There is no central bus station in Lima, each bus company has its own separate depot. Read our comprehensive guide to bus travel in Peru for more detailed information.
Remember to look after you valuables in the bus terminals as petty theft is a common problem. This advice also carries forward for journey aboard your chosen bus.
The best bus operator in Peru is Cruz del Sur, and their fleet of modern, comfortable and safe buses have proven to be the most popular method of transport for visitors to Peru.
Lima Bus Routes:
Lima to Paracas by Bus (Paracas National Reserve & Ballestas Islands)
Pisco is 240 km’s south of Lima, and although there is a small airport in Ica, there are no commercial flights that link with the capital Lima. The bus route from Lima to Paracas takes around 4 hours along the Pan-American Highway (South). The route is crosses the dry arid desert of the coast, on a mainly straight road. The route costs approximately US$10 – 15, depending on bus company and type of service.
Lima to Nazca by Bus
Nazca is approximately 440 km’s south of Lima, twice the distance of Lima to Paracas. The journey follows the Pan-America Highway (South) and takes approximately 6 hours. Although there is a small airport in Nazca, there are no commercial flights from Lima, therefore this bus route is the only way to travel to Nazca. Nazca is also a good stopping point for tourists heading to the southern city of Arequipa. The route costs approximately US$18 – 23, depending on bus company and type of service.
Lima to Arequipa by Bus
Arequipa is just over 1000 km’s south of Lima, and by road this bus journey takes approximately 16 hours. This journey follows the Pan-American Highway (South) along the dry and arid Peruvian coast passing through Paracas, Ica and Nazca before arriving into Arequipa. Most poeple travelling direct to Arequipa prefer to fly, as the flight time is only 45 minutes. This bus route costs approximately US$30 – 40, depending on bus company and type of service.
Lima to Puno by Bus (Lake Titicaca)
Puno (Lake Titicaca) is some 1,300 km’s from Lima. There is no direct route from Lima to Puno and all buses must first travel to Arequipa, before travelling on to Puno. Often you maybe required to change bus in Arequipa, and connection times maybe several hours. It is not recommended to make this route in one journey, as travel times are between 18 and 20 hours. Flights from Lima to Juliaca (1 hour from Puno) take approximately 2 hours with a stop over in Arequipa.
Lima to Cusco by Bus
The route between Lima and Cusco is popular with travellers looking for the most economical method of travel between the two major destinations. Be careful when booking tickets as many bus companies will tell you that the route is direct, however most bus companies first travel to Arequipa where you will pick up a connecting bus to Cusco; this route can take 36 hours. The most direct route first travels to Nazca before climing the Andes and crossing to Abancay before arrving into Cusco; this route takes 24 hours. Be warned that this bus route crosses extreme and norrow mountain roads, and at times can be a little worrying. It is much safer and quicker to fly this route. Flights from Lima to Cusco take approximately 1 1/4 hours.
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