Exploring Peru: An Adventure in 28 Climates

Peru’s amazingly diverse geography and climatic zones boast a variety of weather patterns, whose splendor is matched only by the fascinating history inscribed throughout the country’s landscape. As home to 28 of the world’s 32 climates, Peru’s biodiversity makes it a unique destination to anyone looking for a truly memorable experience. Although Peru is located very close to the equator, weather patterns are also strongly affected by the Humboldt Current and the Andes Mountains.

The Humboldt Current is an ocean current that flows along the South American coast from Chile up to Peru. It flows in the direction of equator, and has a very large effect on Peru’s rainfall and temperatures along the coast. Primarily, the presence of the Humboldt Current keeps Peru’s central and southern coast extremely dry, while the northern coast still receives somewhat regular rainfall. The Humboldt Current is also a very strong upwelling current (water moves from deeper depths towards the surface), which brings cold, nutrient-packed water to the surface and results in a rich ecosystem along the Peruvian Coast. Because the water in the Current is quite cold, the water cools the marine air, and thus prevents it from creating much rain along Peru’s central and southern coastline.

The Andes are the longest exposed mountain range on the planet and have an average height of approximately 13,000 feet. They stretch across seven countries in South America (Chile, Argentina, Peru, Colombia, Bolivia, Ecuador and Venezuela), and Aconcagua is their tallest peak at 22,840 feet. Because this mountain range stretches through a variety of climates and weather patterns, the climatic diversity offers adventurous travelers the chance to explore a myriad of geographies within Peru. The weather patterns in the Andes range from humid with high rainfall, which can be found in northern Peru, to areas that are very arid and have less precipitation, which is common in the southern regions in the country.

Peru’s biodiversity is continually affected by the presence of the Humboldt Current and that of the Andes, and this combination results in weather patterns and climates that continue to amaze those individuals that travel to Peru to explore its natural wonders. The temperatures vary greatly depending on the specific region, and this variety adds even more excitement to an already fascinating country.

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