This 22 days-tour is for the true adventurers who wants to discover a taste of what Peru has to offer! From the dry coastal desert to the stunning Andean mountains and the exotic Amazon Jungle, there’s excitement and magic to be found all over this incredible country. Our Complete South Peru tour also includes the famous Inca Trail and entrance to the UNESCO World Heritage Site at Machu Picchu. Embrace authentic culture, meet locals, venture along original Inca trails and absorb the spirit of the real Peru!
Because permits for the Inca Trail Trek are limited and distributed on a first come first served basis, it is very important that you book in advance, so that we can secure passes for your desired dates.
During high tourist season (April to November), we recommend that you book and pay a deposit 6-8 months in advance.
During low tourist season (December to March), 3-4 months in advance is sufficient.
Please contact us to check availability!
Difficulty: 5/6 on a scale of 1 to 10 (1= for everyone / 10= only for athletes!)
Most of this tour could be rated 2-3/10, but the 4 days of the Inca Trail Trek are more physical: 8 to12 hour-daily walks with a lot of climbs.
From December to March – the rainy season months – the trail is more difficult.
The tour departs from and returns to Lima, unless you request otherwise. More precise departure times will be discussed in your pre-tour briefing.
Minimum number of participants: 2
Day 1: ARRIVAL IN LIMA
Welcome to Peru! Your tour begins in Lima, the capital city and the epicentre of Peru´s cosmopolitan culture and burgeoning culinary scene!
Private transfer will be arranged from Lima airport to your hotel. There is no scheduled activity today, giving you time to adjust to any jet lag and to explore the city at your leisure! We recommend you to visit the Larco Museum (entrance fee of USD$10), whose chronological galleries provide a thorough overview of 4,000 years of Peruvian pre-Columbian history and give a great background to our tour! Also, it´s essential that you get out and get a taste of Lima´s restaurants – some of the finest in the country!
Accommodation: 1 night 3 star hotel in Lima
Day 2 - AMAZON JUNGLE
Private transfer from your hotel to Lima airport where you will catch a flight to Puerto Maldonado (flight arranged independently), the entry point for the Amazon rain forest.
Our guide will be waiting to welcome you at the airport. The jungle tour begins with a bus tour around the city, before you take a motorized river boat along the Madre de Dios river to your jungle lodge! You will be welcomed with a fruit refreshment and shown to your room – a bungalow built from local indigenous materials with views of either the river or the jungle.
After sharing lunch together, our jungle tour continues with a trek through a section of the Amazon jungle, lasting 2-3 hours. Our guides are experts in the flora here, and will be on hand to demonstrate the medicinal properties of many of the tropical plants found in the area. This excursion includes a stop at a mirador (view point) where you can admire the jungle from up high! Finally, we take a canoe trip along the river where (if we´re lucky!) we can observe caimans and other residents species. We will return to the lodge for dinner, after which you will have time to relax in hammocks or enjoy the refreshments form the bar.
Day 3 - AMAZON JUNGLE
On the morning of Day 3, breakfast is served early before we leave on our excursion to Tambobata National Reserve, through Lake Sandoval. Here, it is easy to understand why Puerto Maldonado is known the Peruvian capital of biodiversity! Giant trees, 3 different species of monkeys and various tropical birds are native to the area, making for an exciting opportunity to spot wildlife in its natural habitat! Exploring Lake Sandoval on small rowing boats, we can hope to spot giant otters, caimans, piranhas and a variety of birds.
Return to Jungle Lodge for lunch and free time.
In the afternoon we will take a trip to Monkey Island where we will be able to observe a great variety of monkeys and understand more about the variations in the species and their way of life.
The sunsets in the Amazon jungle are spectacular and one of the highlight of our stay here. You are welcome to enjoy our final evening here with a sundowner by the pool or even a massage once we return to the Lodge.
Included Excursions: 2 days 2 nights Tambopata Nature reserve including all meals, private tour guide, land and boat transfer
Accommodation: 2 nights jungle lodge
Day 4 - AMAZON JUNGLE AND CUSCO
The last day of the jungle tour starts with an early breakfast and our final jungle excursion to ´the clay lick´, a bird lover’s paradise, where we will be able to see many species of parrots and understand the ecological importance of such structures in the Amazon.
Private transfer to Puerto Maldonado Airport.
Domestic flight to Cusco (flight arranged independently)
Private transfer Cusco Airport tp hotel.
Afternoon at leisure to explore Cusco independtly and acclimatise to the altitude of the region.
Accommodation: 1 night 3 star hotel in Cusco
Day 5 - CUSCO
Morning of leisure.
In the afternoon a city tour of Cusco will take you to all of the most notably historical sites including the Cathedral (a marvel of religious art with 300 paintings from the Cusqueña School), the ‘Qorikancha’ temple (an important religious, geographical and political centre of the Inca Empire), the archaeological complex of Sacsayhuamán (a majestic place with a great view over Cusco and impressive works in stone, some up to 120 tons), the Q’enqo Labyrinth (a religious centre dedicated to the adoration of the Earth), Tambomachay (a center of adoration and worship of water), and Puca Pucara (once used as a military centre).
Included Excursions: City Tour of Cusco (private transfer and tour guide, entrance of all sites visited)
Accommodation: 1 night 3 star hotel in Cusco
Day 6 - SACRED VALLEY OF THE INCAS
Our Sacred Valley tour begins on the morning of Day 6 with a visit to the ruins of Pisac. The ruins are located on the top of the hill and the view of the town below is incredible. On market days you will be able to explore the colourful chaos that is Pisac´s traditional market where you can taste locals products and purchase artisan crafts – either as souvenirs or just for yourself!
After a local lunch we will contrinue on to the charming town of Ollantaytambo. Here we have an afternoon visit to the town´s temple fortress where we can see impressive Inca terraces built into the sides of steep mountains.
Included Excursions: Guided Tour of Sacred Valley of the Incas with entrance to Pisac and Ollantaytambo Inca runis.
Accommodation: 1 night hostel in Ollantaytambo
Day 7 - INCA TRAIL TREK
Time to depart on the most famous walk in the world – the ancient Inca Trail Trek to Machu Picchu! Also known as the Camino Inca, this 3 day hike takes us through some of the most stunning landscapes the Peruvain Andes have to offer. The Incas were a highly organized civilization who made many paths throughout the Andes, a network know as Qhapaq Ñan. The Inca Trail is unique. Nowhere else in the world will you find a trek that combines natural beauty, ancient history and astrological spiritualism in such a spectacular manner – not to mention the beauty of its final destination!
The trek lasts for 4 days and covers 44 kilometres. You will hike over 3 high passes and explore many ancient archaeological sites along the way, before reaching the stunning citadel of Machu Picchu.
The Inca Trail Trek is a challenge even for those who live a reasonably active life and maintain a healthy level of fitness. We encourage everyone to walk at their own pace – there is no rush to finish! The group is led by an expert local guide and supported by a team of porters and cooks, leaving you with only your personal backpack to carry. If you have any concerns or medical conditions that may affect your ability to trek, we advise you to consult your doctor beforehand. A breakdown of each day of the Inca Trail is included below:
Day 7: Depart from accommodation in Ollantaytambo and meet with other trekkers. On this day you follow a relatively easy with a 13km trail, walking for approximately 4½ hours.
1 night in campsite.
Day 8 - INCA TRAIL TREK
The most challenging day of the Inca Trail Trek, this day sees you climb over the highest pass at Warmiwañusca (‘Dead Woman’s Pass’), standing at an impressive 4,200m (13780ft) above sea level. You will walk approximately 9 km, which will take 5-7 hours. After the high pass of the trail you will continue downhill, along old Inca stairs to the campsite.
1 night at campsite.
Day 9 - INCA TRAIL TREK
On this day you will trek approximately 15 km in 7 hours, passing the ruins of Runkurakay, Sayacmarca and Phuyupatamarca where you will have the opportunity to stop and admire the ancient structures.
NOTE: The Inca Trail is a combined service. For the duration of the Inca Trail until the end of your time at Machu Picchu, you will join with other trekkers as part of a wider tour.
Included Excursions: Permits and guided hike on the Inca Trail, camping equipment and all meals are included from Day 7 to Day 9
Day 10 - MACHU PICCHU
On the morning of Day 10 you complete the final section of the Inca Trail hike to Machu Picchu, walking for roughly one hour across a steep mountainside through humid cloud forest of giant ferns and broad-leaf vegetation. Upon entering Machu Picchu, your included guide will show you the most important places and describe their purposes during the Inca times, giving you an insight into the history and culture of Inca. You are the free to explore the ruins independently until the site’s closing time at 6pm at which time you will need to make your way down to the town of Aguas Calientes, lying at the foot of the mountain.
Included Excursions: 2 hours guided Tour of Machu Picchu
Not Included: Access to Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain – please notify us at the time of booking if you would like to add one or both of these options. We advise our clients that they are both steep climbs up quite narrow stairs!
Accommodation: 1 night 3 star hotel in Aguas Calientes
Day 11 - AGUAS CALIENTES to CUSCO
Morning of leisure to rest and recover from the Inca Trail!
In the afternoon we will catch the train from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo.
Arriving at Ollantaytambo in late afternoon, you can take a rest or explore the town centre independently.
Included Excursions: Train ticket from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo
Accommodation: 1 night hostel in Ollantaytambo
Day 12 - DAY AT LEISURE IN CUSCO
Private transfer from Ollantaytambo to Cusco
Day of leisure to discover museums, art galleries, mixture of colonial and Inca architecture, artisan souvenir shops, chocolate shops, traditional massages, restaurants and more.
Accommodation: 1 night 3 star hotel in Cusco
Day 13 - CUSCO - PUNO
Private transfer early in the morning from Cusco to Puno.
The drive takes us past some beautiful scenery, going along roads with herds of llamas, alpacas and vicuñas before reaching the Altiplano (high plain). We will visit some colonial churches and Inca ruins including Andahuaylillas, Raqchi and Pucara. At the highest point of our route (La Raya pass, 4,320m/14170ft) we will come to a research station for high altitude animals – a fascinating place!
Arrive at Puno 5:00 pm. The evening is free for you to enjoy Puno at your leisure.
Puno town lies on the shores of Lake Titicaca the highest accessible lake in the world lying at 3,812m above sea level.
Accommodation: 1 night 3 star hotel in Puno
Days 14 - LAKE TITICACA
Depart Puno in the morning.
Our first stop today will be on Lake Titicaca´s famous floating reed islands – specifically the island of Uros where we will be able to see the locals´ unique way of life and have the chance to ride in a traditional boat made entirely of reeds.
We then move on via boat (3 hours) to the island of Amantaní where we will hike to the top of island´s mountain (4150m/13615ft) to see the Temples of the Pachamama and Pachatata. In the late afternoon you will be welcomed by the local Aymara/Quechua families and experience their hospitality by staying with them for the night. You will experience the local life with their traditions and customs: food made in a traditional way and authentic music performed by the family.
Days 15 - LAKE TITICACA
Wake up early to visit the neighboring island of Taquile, where you will we see a whole other way of local life. Here, men are busy knitting distinctive woolen hats while women are working on the fields. The craftsmen here are renowned worldwide for their complicated designs and incredible skill, and it´s fascinating to see how life differs between two islands that are so close together. There will be an opportunity to buy some of these unique handicrafts.
Transfer back to Puno after lunch.
Included Excursions: Overnight Excursion including tour guide, entrance of all islands, meals in the islands and homestay in Amantani Island
Accommodation: 1 night in a rustic island accommodation, 1 night 3 star hotel in Puno
Days 16 - COLCA CANYON
Leave Puno early in the morning via bus.
En route we will see more of the Andean region, passing abandoned towns destroyed by earthquakes, typical fauna and flora of the region and the Pre-Inca farming terraces known as “Andenerias”. On arrival to Chivay, you will take a stroll to the entrance of the Colca Canyon, which is said to be one of the deepest canyons in the whole world. Weather permitting, it will be possible to visit the nearby hot springs in the afternoon.
Days 17 - COLCA CANYON
Private transfer to Colca Valley to visit the famous Cruz del Condor (Condor’s Cross) vantage point, where you can observe condors soaring over the canyon. We will then go for a walk along the canyon´s edge.
Private transfer to Arequipa
The road to Arequipa is also beautiful, on the way you can see the crater of an extinct volcano (Chucura), the famous volcano’s panorama (from 4800m/15750ft), the snow-covered Chachani mountain and the Aguada Blanca National Park, natural habitat of the beautiful South American camelids (vicuñas, alpacas, guanacos and llamas).
Arrive Arequipa late evening.
Included Excursions: Entrance of Colca Canyon & Guided Tour of the Colca Canyon
Accommodation: 1 night hostel in Colca Canyon and 1 night 3 star hotel in Arequipa
Day 18 - AREQUIPA
3 hour city tour of Arequipa to be arranged in the morning or the afternoon, as per your preference. In this tour you will visit the Compañia church, with its impressive Andean Baroque style and cloisters where young men were trained to become priests. The tour also takes you to the beautiful Main Square, with its Cathedral beautiful Classic facade. We will then continue towards the Santa Catalina Monastery. In the evening you will be transported by private car to the bus terminal from where you will take an overnight bus (10 hours ) to Nazca.
Included Excursions: Entrance to all sightseeing points & Guided Tour in Arequipa
Accommodation: 1 night overnight bus
Day 19 - NASCA
Arrive Nazca bus terminal in the morning.
The Nazca lines are one of the most mystical highlights of Peru. It is thought the lines were made by three different civilizations: Paracas (900 -200 BC), the Nazca (200BC -600AD) and then new migrants from Ayacucho around 630AD. Although there is a viewing tower, the best way to see the Nazca lines is from the air: the optional flight provides amazing views of the “monkey”, “hummingbird”, “condor”, “spider” and even a “spaceman”. After admiring the Nazca lines, we will visit the pre-Inca cemetery of Chauchilla, the only archaeological site in Peru where you can see mummies in their original setting: some of them are over 1,000 years old, and others mummies still have hair and soft tissue intact. For many years this place was looted by treasure hunters who left corpses and ceramic fragments strewn across the desert. There will be two different optional tours which you can choose from: the visit to the pyramids of Cahuachi (a major pilgrimage and ceremonial centre of the Nazca culture with 1,5 km2/0.6 sq. miles of architectural complex and over 40 mounds topped with adobe structures) or the underground aqueducts of Cantalloc (built around 300 to 600 AD to conduct water from the mountain springs down to Nazca. There were initially 36 S-shaped canals and some of them are still used by farmers in the area). After the tours, we will return to Nazca to visit a ceramic studio, where the artisan will give us a lecture of the Nazca civilisation and about the colourful vessels they made hundreds of years ago.
Optional Excursions: Scenic flight over Nazca Lines (US$130 + S/25 tax) • Planetarium show & lecture (US$10) • Cantalloc underground aqueducts (US$8) • Cahuachi pyramids (US$20)
Accommodation: 1 night 3 star hotel in Nazca
Day 20 - DESERT OASIS of HUACACHINA
Our private transfer will meet us early in the morning to take us to the desert oasis of Huacachina. This is the place in South America to ride in a dune buggy and try your hand at sand boarding! People of all ages – kids, teenagers, adults, seniors – climb into a four-wheel-drive dune buggy which is driven by a professional driver. One half of the tour is driving with the dune buggy, up and down the dunes. The other half of the tour gives you a chance to try sand boarding. This is just like snowboarding, but instead of snow you will be boarding on the fine-grained sand of the desert. If you aren’t athletically talented, no problem! Just lay on your stomach on the board, and try “sand sledding”. This is a lot of fun and doesn’t require any patience or skills. Even if you decided against the sand boarding, you will still be able to enjoy the beauty of the gigantic sand dunes!
Private transfer to Paracas.
Included Excursions: Dune buggy and sand boarding tour
Accommodation: 1 night 3 star hotel in Paracas
Day 21 - BALLESTAS ISLANDS and PISCO
After your breakfast, a tour guide will pick you up from the hotel and take you to meet the boat which will tranfer us to Ballestas Islands. These islands, known as the ‘Galapagos of Peru’, are spectacular. The rocks have been eroded to form numerous arches and caves which provide shelter for thousands of sea lions and seabirds. Over 150 species of birds inhabit the island (penguins, cormorants, boobies and pelicans). Although it is not possible to go on to the island itself, you will have a wonderful experience with breath taking views and sounds of the wildlife. If we are lucky we will watch seals and dolphins playing around the boat. The boat trip passes the mysterious Candelabra geoglyph, which is believed to be connected to the Nazca lines, it is carved on the side of the mountain. If the weather conditions are bad and we cannot take a part of motorboat tour, we will visit the Paracas Reserve, where it is possible to experience similar flora and fauna, as well as an interesting interpretation centre. The next stop is the town of Pisco, the town that lends its name to the infamous ´Pisco Sour´ – Peru´s most famous cocktail!
Private Transfer to Lima
Included Excursions: A Boat Tour of the Ballestas Islands or a visit of Paracas Reserve and Pisco tasting tour
Accommodation: 1 night 3 star hotel in Lima
Day 22 - DEPART LIMA
Your South Peru Complete Tour comes to an end today.
If you would like to stay longer and explore even more of Peru then please let us know! Our itineraries are flexible and can be adjusted to best suit your needs and expectations.