Some Psychedelics Are Legal in Peru — Here’s a Look At Which Ones (2023)

Peru’s Amazon Rainforest is home to all kinds of psychedelics. Too bad most are illegal.

By Phil Dubley Fact-Checked By Tripsitter Legal Team · Last Updated: January 10, 2024
Last Updated: January 10, 2024

The laws in Peru are strict regarding the use and sale of psychedelic substances.

MDMA, LSD, Ketamine, and psilocybin are all currently banned in Peru.

However, it’s possible to prove personal use under certain circumstances — which reduces the penalties if prosecuted.

Summary of Psychedelic Drug Laws in Peru

  • It’s legal to chew coca leaves, drink ayahuasca, and take San Pedro (Echinopsis pachanoi) because they’re a part of Peru’s traditional medicine.
  • Certain amounts of drugs are considered unpunishable — however, possessing two drugs, even within the legal amounts, is illegal.

Drugs & Legal Amounts in Peru

SubstanceLegal Amount
Cocaine basic paste5 g
Cocaine hydrochloride2 g
Marijuana 8 g
Marijuana derivatives2 g
Opium latex1 g
Opium derivatives200 mg
MDMA, MDA, methamphetamine, and similar substances250 mg
Ayahuasca, coca leaves, San Pedro Legal


Are Magic Mushrooms Legal in Peru?

Psilocybin, the main active chemical in magic mushrooms, is criminalized by law throughout Peru. Shrooms are therefore illegal to cultivate, carry and sell. However, it’s possible to prove personal use of this substance, leading to reduced penalties.

According to Decree-Law 22095, published in 1978, psilocybin qualifies as a Schedule I, category “B” substance. This can lead to a maximum sentence of 15 years, although the 1991 Penal Code says that possession for personal use will not be punishable. The judge will determine whether a personal use case is feasible depending on the amount.

Peruvian laws are not specific about the possession and distribution of spores used for growing psychedelic mushrooms. Article 55 of Law 22095 prohibits the planting and cultivation of Schedule I “A” substances but does not mention anything about the “B” category, where psilocybin is at.

As the law is not clear, we recommend proceeding with caution. Spores are legal almost everywhere, but cultivating them is not.

Do Magic Mushrooms Grow Wild in Peru?

Yes, multiple species of psychedelic mushrooms grow in Peru. Among these, Psilocybe brasiliensis, Psilocybe cubensis, and Panaeolus cyanescens.

What Are the Medicinal Uses of Shrooms?

Today, science is beginning to explore the medicinal uses of magic mushrooms. Most of this research is being conducted in North America and Europe.

Psilocybin has been shown to help patients with depression, addiction, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and existential anxiety.

In addition to these therapeutic uses for psychological conditions, shrooms have also been proven effective against cluster headaches.

Is LSD Legal In Peru?

No. Peru’s laws regarding LSD (lysergic acid diethylamide) are strict.

Anything other than personal use is punishable with elevated fines and a long prison sentence.

Selling LSD or any chemical used to make LSD is also criminalized under Peruvian law.

Is MDMA Legal in Peru?

MDMA (AKA ecstasy) isn’t included in Decree-Law 22095 but was prohibited in the 1991 revision.

The latter stipulates that you cannot possess more than 250 milligrams of MDMA, and carrying more than that becomes an offense. However, if you stay below that, it’s considered personal consumption and is not punishable by law.

Its manufacture is prohibited in all its aspects, even for personal consumption.

Furthermore, it is even illegal to produce it for scientific use, which leads to a delay in research regarding the therapeutic properties of MDMA.

Is Ketamine Legal in Peru?

Ketamine is included in Schedule III “A” in Decree-Law 22095 as a phencyclidine derivative. For this reason, its possession or sale is considered less severe, having a maximum penalty of 2 years for selling it outside of pharmacies.

While ketamine has long been known for medical and veterinary uses, the possibility of therapeutic benefits is still being investigated in some countries, especially for cases of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and persistent depression.

Unfortunately, this is not the case in Peru, as ketamine research is prohibited here.

Legal Psychoactive Substances in Peru

Current Peruvian laws do not mention designer drugs, such as 1P-LSD, NBOMe, and delta 8 THC, among others.

You also need to know that, as a substance used in ancient rituals in the region, ayahuasca is legal in Peru.

What’s the Difference Between Legalization & Decriminalization?

There’s an important distinction to make between legalization and decriminalization.

Legalization completely removes all penalties related to possession and authorized sale.

Decriminalization involves reducing (but not eliminating) the penalties for breaking a particular law.

Key Takeaways: What’s the Future of Psychedelics in Peru?

Peru is fairly progressive with its drug laws but is still conservative regarding the use, production, and sale of some psychedelic substances. For the time being, no progress is being made in this regard, and we recommend extreme caution in case of possessing LSD, MDMA, or similar substances in this country.

A step forward was taken with the legalization of medical cannabis in 2017, so there is hope that, in the future, Peru will continue in this regard, as the United States and different countries in Europe have already done.