This tour – deisgned for those who want to take their time, delve into different cultures, understand a new way of life and truly experience Peru – takes you through some of the most enchanting areas of Cusco and Puno, combining the classic ´must see´ spots with off-beat and unexpected destinations. Finishing at the white city of Arequipa, this is a tour for those who love travel, diversity and activity!
You will wander the streets of beautiful colonial cities, hike among snow-capped peaks and colourful mountains, explore ruins from Inca and pre-Inca civilisations, visit the highest navigable lake in the world, watch your coffee as it comes straight from the bean to your cup, trek through the jungle and watch the sun as it casts shadows over the awesome Lost City of Machu Picchu. All of this in an 11 day, fully organised package!
Minimum number of participants: 2
Day 1: ARRIVAL TO CUSCO
An easy day of sightseeing to allow everyone to acclimatize to the altitude before we begin with the more active section of the tour.
Believed to be the centre of the world (specifically – its belly button) at the time of the Inca Empire, Cusco is the historical capital of Peru and showcases a fascinating mix of Inca and Colonial architecture. We will organise a tour that takes you to some of the lesser known sites in the city, giving you an insider´s guide to one of the most visited places in the world.
Day 2: PISAC - OLLANTAYTAMBO (SACRED VALLEY OF THE INCAS)
Leaving Cusco in the morning we will arrive in Pisac and an animal sanctuary which cares for animals rescued from the black market. Learning more about the animals resident in this area of the Andes is fascinating, and gives us a taste of some of the wildlife we can hope to see over the course of the tour. Next, we will take a short trek along a section of the original Inca Trail which will bring us to the Inca ruins above the town of Pisac. From here we will head back down into the town to visit the market. In the afternoon we will go by privte transport to the hotel in Sacred Valley of The Incas near Ollantaytambo, where we will spend the night.
Day 3: OLLANTAYTAMBO - PATACANCHA
Breakfast will be served at 7:45 am. Once everyone has finished we will depart the hotel and make our way to the Inca ruins at Ollantaytambo, from which we can glean an insight into the way of life at the time of the Inca Empire. From Ollantaytambo will go by private transport to Patacancha Valley, a journey of around 45 minutes, where we will visit the local Andean community in Huilloc. At 2pm we will embark on a trek of roughly 3 hours from the Patacancha Valley back to Ollantaytambo, passing by the Pre Inca ruins at Punamarca and enjoying the breathtaking views of the Andean landscape. Arriving back in Ollantaytambo at 5pm, you will have free time to rest and reflect on the day´s activity.
Day 4: JUNGLE TREK AND COFFEE PLANTATION
An early breakfast will be served at 6am As early as possible, we being out trek through the high jungle during which we will stop off at a local coffee plantation. This is an amazing chance to gain insight into the secrets of small-scale coffee production in Peru, in which only the highest quality Arabica beans are used. Caffeine-fuelled, we will then continue our walk through the jungle, and have the option of doing some rafting in the afternoon – please enquire at the time of booking.
Day 5: JUNGLE TREK TO AGUAS CALIENTES
We will sart the day with the breakfast at 7:30 am Today´s trek takes us along the Inca trail and ends up at the town of Aguas Calientes – the base from which we will explore Machu Picchu! Time permitting, there will be the chance to visit thermal baths once we arrive. In Aguas Calientes you will have the evening free to explore the town and rest – we have a very early start on day 6!
Day 6: MACHU PICCHU
Day 6 is dedicated to exploring the lost Inca city of Machu Picchu – Peru´s most famous site!
Option to visit Machu Picchu Mountain or Huayna Picchu for an additional charge – please notify us at the time of booking if you would like to do this. We recommend that you enter the site as early as possible to make the most of this incredible place – one of the New 7 Wonders of the World and a UNESCO World Heritage Site! You have until 5pm to explore the ruins, at which point we need to make our way back down to Aguas Calientes.
Train Aguas Calientes – Ollantaytambo, night in hotel Ollantaytambo.
Day 7: MORAY – SALINERAS DE MARAS – CHINCHERO – CUSCO
Breakfast will be served at 8:00 am Private transport will take us from Ollantaytabo to Moray – a journey of roughly 45 minutes – where we will take a tour of a mysterious Inca site believed to have been a centre fro studying climate change in Inca times! From here it is a 20 minute journey via private transfer to the town of Maras – another gem of the Sacred Valley of the Incas. After a short visit to the town we will begin a relaxed 1 hour walk to the town´s star attraction – theSalienras de Maras. These unique salt mines not only produce high quality salt compared to that of the Himalayas, but are also unique in that they still employ use prodcution methods developed and perfected by the Incas! The trek to reach the salineras takes us past the beautiful scenery of tje Cordillera Urubamba and gives us plenty of opportunities for some great photos! From Maras we move on to Chinchero where we we take part in a textile workshop.In this beautiful town you will get an insight into the secrets of producing local textiles, liquors and food, and will be able enjoy products unlikely to found in any other part of the world! We will arrive back in Cusco at 6:30pm via private transport from Chinchero.
Day 8: QUESWACHACA BRIDGE – PUYA RAYMONDI FOREST – LAKE TITICACA
This day we will visit the most unique spots between Cusco and Lake Titicaca: Queswachaca bridge and the forest of the huge Puya Raimondii We will start the day with the breakfast at 6am before going by private transport to the Queswachaka Bridge – a UNESCO world heritage site – leaving at 6:30am and arriving at 9:30am. After a short, 45 minute trek we will reach one of the most unique sites Cusco has to offer. We can see Inca engineering at work in the 21st century and take a walk across the Q´eswachaka Bridge! Sustaining ancient traditions over the centuries is no small feat, but it is managed spectacularly by local Quechue communities in the Cusco region. Four Quechue communities come together every year in order to rebuild the bridge completely from scratch. The secrets of this design and construction process are handed down from generation to generation and their aim is to maintain exactly the same style and materials that were used more than 500 years ago by Inca engineers.
Thanks to this tradition and the strong will of the 1,000 people who participate in the bridge´s annual reconstruction, we can step away from the history books and enjoy an interactive experience of Inca culture.
Next, we travel by private transfer to the forest of the Andean Queen!
Puya raimondii is the largest plant of bromeliad species, reaching up to several meters in height. It grows exclusively at altitudes of 3200 to 4800 metres above sea level, and is only found in the Peruvian and Bolivian Andes. In a time when our planet is at such risk of deforestation, global warming and environmental damage, it is truly awesome to behold such rare and beautiful plants in their natural habitat! Known as the Queen of the Andes, they live up to their regal title! During the next part of our trek we pass through Qhapaq Nañ trails, along which we will have fantastic views of the surrounding landscapes before arriving at our next destination, from which our private transport then takes us to Lake Titicaca and the Tinajani Canyon. Arrive Lake Titicaca 7:30pm.
Day 9: LAKE TITICACA – PENISULA CAPACHICA – AMANTANI ISLAND
Breakfast will be served at 7:30 am
Moving away from the Andes into the region of Puno takes us into the completely different but equally unique culture of local communities living around Lake Titicaca. During our time at the lake we will visit mummies from the Tiawanaco culture, meet locals from the Uros community of the famed floating islands and hike to the highest point of Amantani Island from where we can enjoy incredible views of Lake Titicaca as the sunsets.
Lunch and dinner with a local family in Amantani Homestay with local family in Amantani
Day 10: ISLAND AMANTANI – AREQUIPA
We will enjoy breakfast with a local family in Amantani island at 7:30am. At 8:30am we will go by boat to Capachica Penisula. From the Capachica Penisula we will go by private transport to visit Sillustani near Puno. From Sillustani we will continue on to Arequipa via private transport (roughly 5 hours´ drive)
Arrive Arequipa 6pm, evening at leisure.
Day 11: AREQUIPA
Breakfast 8:00 am City tour of Arequpia – known as ´The White City´. The visit will cover the most beautiful and noteworthy spots of the city including the museum of Juanita, the Cathedral, Santa Catalina Monastery and the site where the city´s famous white sillar bricks are extracted!
The tour finishes at 12pm on Day 11. We are always happy to adjust and modify our tours to best meet your tastes and expectations – please just let us know how we can help! If you would prefer to end the tour in Lima or another destination we are able to arrange transport for you, for an extra fee.
Our tours are customized for small groups starting from a minimum of 2 persons. The prices given in this itinerary are applicable for groups of 2 or 3 people, and reflect the cost per person. Prices vary for groups of more than 3 people. Please inquire.
We can provide a tour guide in other languages such as French, German, Polish, etc as required.
All our tours are aimed for people in good physical and mental condition. Some tours require better physical conditions than others, please check the tour details. Before booking the tour you are obligated to mention any potential health problems you have had in the past.
All transportation within Peru is included in our tours. For both the “Standard” and “Premium” price of tour this involves private transfers by car (depending on the amount of participants in your group, the size of the car will differ). International flights are not included. Some domestic flights are included if the tour you choose. Please before booking your tour always carefully check the “Itinerary” tab with the “Included” or “Not Included” tab.
If you would prefer to travel by public transportation and decrease the cost of your tour we are able to accommodate this.
The price of the “Standard” tour includes accommodations of double rooms in hostels. Please note: hostels are not hotels.
The price of the “Premium” tour includes accommodations of double rooms in 3* hotels. Please note: 3* hotels in Peru are likely to be more basic than the equivalent of European or North American standards.
Homestays are very basic and usually will not provide en suite bathrooms or hot water. Hostels in some trails/ parts of the tours are very basic but most include private bathrooms but with no hot water.
We are able to provide single rooms and a higher standard of hotel for an extra fee – please let us know at the time of booking. Where an itinerary states that you will be staying in a ´basic hostel´or ´homestay´ it is unlikely that there are other accommodation options. If you would prefer not to stay in these places then we can adjust the tour accordingly, but this will mean missing out on that particular location. Similarly, we are able to provide accommodation exclusively in hostels and homestays, which will result in a decrease of the tour fee. Please advise us of any desired changes as soon as possible before booking.
Breakfasts are generally included in the accommodation. Unless otherwise specified in the tour itinerary, lunch and dinner are not included in the tour price.
Some details of the tour may change, even last minute, depending on weather conditions, physical condition of the participants and other unpredictable elements – for example: strikes, protests etc. In these cases there are no refunds.
Our prices are “all inclusive” as much as possible. Nevertheless, some excursions, visits or activities cannot be included in order to give you more freedom and to adapt to each traveler.
Please read carefully the “Included” and “Not included” information, and consult the ´Itinerary´ tab for information about optional, non included excursions.
The prices of our tours may vary in high season (April to November) when some rates can increase.
For Machu Picchu, there is a discount of USD$20 for students who send us a scanned copy of their ISIC card via email during the booking process and who then bring the original, valid ISIC card with them for the trip (without a valid ISIC card, you would not only lose the discount but also the possibility to explore the ruins since you would not get permission to entrance). There is another discount of USD$20 for Peruvians and another USD$10 for Peruvian University students. Peruvian citizens have to indicate DNI number during booking process and to bring valid DNI for the tour. Peruvian students have to send a scan of their student card during the booking process and bring a valid document with them for the tour. In both of the above-mentioned situations, if you do not show the valid document(s) at the entrance to Machu Picchu, you will not get permission to entrance and will loose the possibility to explore the ruins.
In all of our tours, a Boleto Turistico is included. This provides access to a number of attracttions in the Cusco Region including the ruins at Pisac and Ollantaytambo and certain sites withing Cusco City. The boleto is valid for 10 days.
RESERVATIONS & PAYMENT
To book any tour, first we will confirm its availability for your specific date. Then we need to receive an advance payment (65% of the total price or full price) according to current price of the tour. We will also need to have your full details including your full name, surname, passport number, nationality and date of birth (no errors). If there are any errors in the above mentioned details the company is not responsible for any invalid tickets due to misinformation from the participant. This information is necessary to book the entrance tickets on your behalf and if there are any error the tickets are invalid. In order to reserve tours we need a copy of each participants passport valid for at least 6 months after the planned travel date. Please note that your reservation is not confirmed until we receive these elements.
We require clients to pay the remainder of the fee one day before the start of the tour.
From the date of payment 65% of the total price until 29 days before the tour begins: Cancellation fee of 30% of the paid amount. From 28 days before the tour begins until 15 days before the tour begins: Cancellation fee of 60% of the paid amount. From 14 days before the tour begins or in the case of a no- show: Cancellation fee of 100% of the paid amount.
Cancellations are deemed to be executed when a written cancellation confirmation from the agency is received. Cancellation deadlines and fees may vary depending on group size, route and dates.
Any additional charges incurred (including, among others, bank transfers of payment) will be covered by the client.
VACCINATIONS & INSURANCE
Before travelling, you should always check current information about required vaccines. We recommend you to take the vaccine against yellow fever at least one week before your travel. Please note that to participate in any of our tours you have to have valid travel insurance. Please check the regulations and exclusions of your insurance company, especially if trekking in the high mountains or planning adventure sports.
CHECK SOME IMPORTANT POINTS
Avoid unforeseen complications by arriving at the tour departure location at least one day before the beginning of the tour. Check requirements about passports and visas for entering Peru in advance.
WHAT TO BRING
Here you will find some recommendations for what kinds of items you may need on the tour:
- A lightweight water & windproof jacket with hood
- Sandals or thongs/ flip flops
- Wide-brimmed hat or cap
- Lip balm, sun block with high UV factor
- Antibacterial hand cleansing gel
- Wet wipes
- Toilet paper
- Travel plug adaptor with a USB port
- Personal medication, if required
- Insect repellent
- Small backpack for day trips
- Warm jacket and pullover
- Gloves, hat and scarf
- Comfortable trekking trousers
- Flash light
- Original and copy of your passport