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What to Know About Renting a Surfboard in Peru

Picture of Brandon Dupre
Updated: 1 March 2018

So you’ve decided that you want to go to Peru and are getting ready to book your tickets, but you don’t know whether or not to pay extra money to bring your board. It’s a difficult question and you’re concerned because you don’t trust any of the blogs out there. Here’s what you need to know about renting boards in Peru.

If you’re unsure about lugging your boards all the way across the world to surf in Peru, here’s the thing: you don’t really need to. Of course, who wouldn’t want their trusted board with them while surfing new and challenging waves? But really, when you add up the costs, after shipping it to Peru and then lugging it around everywhere, it doesn’t really make sense. If you’re solely on a surf trip, well, then go for it. You don’t want to be in uncharted waters without it. But if you plan to go to Cusco and see Machu Picchu while dragging your board around, don’t do it.

Lugging your board about: Cusco

Outside the world of surfing, Peru is most recognized for Machu Picchu and the great Inca city of Cusco. It is a place that when you come to Peru you have to see, even if the rest of your time in Peru is spent at the beach. Since you’re in Peru and you definitely are going to Machu Picchu—you can’t fly all the way to Peru without going—then bringing your boards around is the biggest hassle imaginable. The best solution, if you did bring your board and were headed to Cusco, would be to talk with a hostel in Lima about storing your board there while you’re in the mountains. Most of the hostels wouldn’t mind doing that, especially if you were spending some time in Lima at their hostel.

Lugging your board about: Everywhere else

While Machu Picchu is Peru’s main attraction it is in no means the only thing to see. The entire country is filled with ancient ruins, remarkable landscapes and beautiful people. The popular route for tourists is to bus it from Lima, down to Arequipa and then to Cusco—and doing it with a board isn’t desirable. It is possible, but the handling of your board may be an issue, especially people who aren’t used to handling surfboards, which is most the country. Peru has great waves in the south, so you’ll want to bring your board if you do head that way. Another good solution would be to leave it in Lima.

Great boards everywhere

The main reasons not to bring your board to Peru is that, well, there are shops to rent boards at every decent break in Peru. Of course the concern is whether or not the boards that you rent are even worth your time because you won’t want to be surfing a world class wave without a decent board—but don’t worry about it. Every surf spot you go in Peru will have a good short board and plenty of foam and long boards to take out. If you do leave your board at home, you’ll have plenty of good board options everywhere you go. You should never pay more than 20 or 30 soles for the day and even less if you’re only looking to rent for a couple of hours.