Should you visit Brazil or Peru?Brazil and Peru are very different countries, except for the Amazon Rainforest that they share. Although 60% of this gigantic natural haven is within Brazil, 17% is found in Peru and both destinations provide you with a completely different Amazon experience. There is however no doubting that whichever part of the Amazon rainforest you visit you will have an amazing time exploring this unique ecosystem and its diverse nature. One of the main differences between visiting the Amazon in Peru and Brazil is the distances you will need to travel in order to reach them. Due to the sheer size of Brazil, Manaus is over 1000 miles inland and is over a 4 hour flight from Rio de Janeiro meaning that you will need to set apart more travel time in order to reach the gateway to the Brazilian Amazon. Alternatively, the Peruvian Amazon, located in Southern Peru, is easily accessible from both Lima, 1h40min flight, and Cusco, 1h flight, allowing you to fit it in to your travel itinerary as you visit Machu Picchu and the Amazon in successive days or arriving at Lima's International airport. The Amazon river itself is amazing to see, wherever you go. The places furthest upstream tend to offer most biological diversity, if you want to see lots of animal species. So Peru might be better in that respect. Also, the further you can get away from human settlements, the more likely you are to find larger animals like monkeys, peccaries, jaguars, etc.
Whether you should explore Brazil or Peru depends on what you are looking for. In Peru, Cuzco, the capital of the Inca Empire is a popular destination for tourists. Its various churches from the colonial time, its many museums from the Inca Museum to the Chocolate Museum and its Plaza de Armas with numerous small gardens and benches make Cuzco a picturesque city. Many visitors only pass through Lima to go to Cuzco but with its historic center and its many museums, the City of Kings has a lot to offer. Lima is also famous for its cuisine and you will be able to enjoy a nice meal in front of the beautiful ocean landscape. On the other hand, if you decide to fly to Rio de Janeiro, you will discover a very different atmosphere. You can relax on the beaches of Ipanema and Copacabana, experience the Brazilian party scene, enjoy the view of the city from the Christ Redeemer on Corcovado Hill or learn more about Rio's historical past. And depending of the season, you can even take part in the Rio Carnival or the Oktoberfest. Rio de Janeiro is a large city, which can be a little overwhelming for visitors who are travelling for a getaway from a chaotic city or environment. In this case, Peru is perhaps a calmer and better option.
In terms of the highlights of each country, a trip to Peru is never complete without enjoying the beauty of the incredible Machu Picchu, just like a trip to Brazil cannot be planned without including a trip to the spectacular Iguazu Waterfalls. Both sites are part of the highlights of South America that you don't want to miss and once again both are very different. Hidden between several mountains, Machu Picchu has a lot to offer in terms of architecture and stonemasons skills. If you're feeling adventurous you can take the Inca Trail but if you want to relax and enjoy the beautiful scenery you can also take the train from Cuzco. The Iguazu Waterfalls and Its 275 individual waterfalls spread over 3 km are a completely unique natural wonder. Just next to the waterfalls, you can also see visit the bird park and discover some beautiful birds such as the Hyacinth Macaw and toucans.
Which country is cheaper, Peru or Brazil?
Should I visit Brazil or Peru? This is a popular question for many travelers. By figuring out which country is more expensive, you'll understand where you'll get more bang for your buck. A week in Peru can cost you about $323 (per person), while a week in Brazil may cost you around $447. These differences become even more noticable if you plan to spend a longer time in the country. 10 days, two weeks, or even one month of travel to Peru or Brazil can really add to your travel budget.
Accommodation is often cheaper in Peru compared to Brazil ($19 vs. $31). Budget travelers usually stay in less expensive hostels and guest houses, while nicer hotels often appeal to families and upscale travelers.