This 20 day-tour is for the adventurer who wants to enjoy most of what South Peru has to offer and an authentic experience. From the dry coastal desert to the stunning Andean mountains, there’s excitement and magic to be found. Embrace authentic culture, meet the locals, venture along original Inca trails and absorb the spirit of this beautiful country.
IMPORTANT: BOOK IN ADVANCE!
Permits for Inca Trail Trek are limited, on a first come, first serve basis…
In high season (April to November), you should book and pay a deposit 8-6 months in advance. In low season (December to March), 4-3 months in advance.
Please contact us to check availability! Then we will need your passport details to book your Inca Trail.
|PHYSICALITY||5 or 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 to 12 hour-daily walk with a lot of climbs.
More difficult during rainy season (December to March).
|DEPARTURE TIME||Time of collection will be discussed the day before in your briefing.|
DAY 1 - ARRIVAL IN LIMA
Welcome to Peru! South Peru Essentials & Inca Trail Trek Tour begins in Lima.
Private transfer will be arranged from Lima airport to your hotel. There is not scheduled activity today assuming you will take a good rest for adapting the jet lag or spend the day at your leisure. We recommend you to visit Larco Museum (entrance fee of US$10), where showcases chronological galleries that provide a thorough overview of 4,000 years of Peruvian pre-Columbian history.
Accommodation: 1 night 3 star hotel in Lima
DAY 2 AND 3 - CUSCO
You will be taken to the Lima airport where you will take a flight to Cusco. The flight will last an hour, taking you up into the Andes over spectacular scenery. After arriving to Cusco you will have the rest of the day free to acclimatize and explore this charming city, which is one of the most beautiful combinations of Inca and Colonial architectures.
The next morning you can also rest or go outside and discover the city. In the afternoon, you will take a part of the city tour including: the Cathedral (a collection of religious art with 300 paintings from the Cusqueña School), the ‘Qorikancha’ temple (the most important one in the Inca Empire and the religious, geographical and political centre of Cusco), the archaeological complex of Sacsayhuamán (a majestic ruins with a great view over Cusco), the Q’enqo Labyrinth (a religious centre dedicated to the adoration of the Earth), Tambomachay (a centre of adoration and worship of water), and Puca Pucara (once used as a military centre).
Included Excursions: City Tour of Cusco (bus, guide and entry to each place)
Optional Excursions: Cusco Tourist Ticket, an entry to most monuments & museums and to a performance of Andean dances and live music at Cusco Art Center (US$45) • Salt Terraces Maras Moray (US$30)
Accommodation: 1 night in a hotel
DAY 4 - SACRED VALLEY OF INCAS
The Sacred Valley tour begins with a visit to the ruins of Pisac. The ruins are located on the top of the hill and the view is incredible. After climbing down from the ruins, on the market days you have a change to visit the famous, traditional market where you can buy souvenirs. We will eat lunch and continue to charming town of Ollantaytambo. We visit the temple fortress and see the impressive Inca terraces which were built on the sides of the steep mountains. The last activity of the day is to return to Cusco via Chinchero site and market. After arriving to Cusco you will have the briefing of the Inca Trail Trek.
Included Excursions: Guided Tour of Sacred Valley of the Incas
Accommodation: 1 night in a hotel
DAY 5,6 AND 7 - INCA TRAIL TREK
Today it is time to start the famous Inca Trail Trek to Machu Picchu which is also known as the Camino Inca. The Incas were a highly organised civilisation and they made many paths throughout the Andes, they called the network of different paths: Qhapaq Ñan. It is hard to find other similar treks across the world which combines natural beauty, mystical ancient history and ends with such an inspiring destination.
This spectacular trek last over 4 days and the trail is 44 kilometres long ensemble of the Inca paths. You will hike over 3 high passes and explore many ancient archaeological sites along the way, before the stunning citadel of Machu Picchu.
The Inca Trail Trek is a challenge and even for those who live a reasonably active life and maintain a healthy level of fitness. Nevertheless, everyone can walk at its own pace and 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. If you have any concerns or medical conditions that may affect your ability to trek, we advise you to consult your doctor beforehand.
Day 5: After an initial short bus journey, the trek starts. The first day is relatively easy with a 13km walk, which will take approximately 4½ hours.
Day 6: This day is the biggest challenge during the whole Inca Trail Trek as you climb over the highest pass at Warmiwañusca (‘Dead Woman’s Pass’), standing at an impressive 4,200m.a.s. l. You will walk approximately 9km, which will take 5-7 hours. After the high pass of the trail you will continue downhill, along old Inca stairs to the campsite, where you will spend the night.
Day 7: We will trek approximately 15km in 7 hours, you will pass the ruins of Runkurakay, Sayacmarca and Phuyupatamarca, you will have an opportunity to stop and admire the ancient structures.
For more details about this itinerary, please take a look at the ‘Inca Trail Trek’ tour.
VERY IMPORTANT: Due to a limited number of people being allowed on the trail per day, permits can sell out far in advance. Please contact us to check availability. Then we need your passport details via email to book your Inca Trail.
Included Excursions: Permits and guided hike on the Inca Trail
Accommodation: 3 nights in campsites
DAY 8 - MACHU PICCHU
This is the last morning of the Inca Trail Trek, you will take your final hike to Machu Picchu: early in the morning, we will hike about an hour across a steep mountainside through humid cloud forest of giant ferns and broad-leaf vegetation. A guide will show you the most important places and describe their purposes during the Inca times. It will be a great lecture of the history and culture of Inca Empire connected with the very nice walk in the beautiful scenery. After your guided tour, you will have time for discovering this unique place on your own. Then we will descent to the small city of Aguas Calientes, lying on the foot of the mountain: you will settle in your room and have a hot shower before choosing the best way to relax for example at the hot springs (optional).
Included Excursions: Guided Tour of Machu Picchu
Accommodation: 1 night 3star hotel in Aguas Calientes
DAY 9 - FROM AGUAS CALIENTES TO CUSCO
After 4 days Inka Trail trail, you will enjoy rest in the hotel in the morning. In the afternoon, taking train from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo. Arriving at Ollantaytambo in late afternoon, you can take a rest or explore the small town of Ollantaytambo at your own.
Included Excursions: Train ticket from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo
Accommodation: 1 night 3star hotel in Cusco
DAY 10 - FREE DAY IN CUSCO
Most of the people appreciate the opportunity to some after the great challenge of the Inca Trail Trek. For those who prefer being active, there is a lot to see in the amazing city of Cusco. Choose between museums, art galleries, colonial courtyards mixed with the Inca architecture, artisan souvenir shops, chocolate shops, traditional massages, restaurants and more.
Accommodation: 1 night 3 star hotel in Cuscol
DAY 11 - PUNO
Pick you up at early morning to start the journey to Puno. We will drive through the beautiful scenery. The drive goes 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, La Raya pass 4,321m, is located a research station for high altitude animals. Puno lies on the shores of Lake Titicaca. The lake is 3,855m.a.s. l and it means it is the highest accessible lake in the world. Arrive at Puno around 5 pm and you can spend the time in Puno at your own leisure.
Accommodation: 1 night 3 star hotel in Puno
DAY 12 to 13 - LAKE TITICACA
he morning starts with departing Puno for an overnight excursion. First we will visit the floating reed islands and see the Uros islanders’ way of the life. There will be an option to ride in the traditional reed boat before it is time to continue the excursion with a 3-hour boat ride to the island of Amantaní. After arriving to the island we will hike to the top of the mountain (4150m) to see the Temples of the Pachamama and Pachatata. Then 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 traditional manners: food made in a traditional way and authentic music performed by the family.
On the following day we will visit the neighbouring Taquile Island, where you will take a part of the our around the ruins and see another way of islanders’ life. The men are busy knitting distinctive woollen hats and the women are working on the fields. They are also world famous for their complicated and fascinating weavings. There will be an opportunity to buy some of these unique handicrafts.
After the lunch we will return to Puno for the night.
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
DAY 14 to 15 - COLCA CANYON
We will leave from Puno early in the morning to enjoy the beautiful journey on the bus: the road takes you high up into the Andes, where you will see abandoned towns; destroyed by earthquakes, typical fauna and flora of the region and the Pre-Inca farming terraces known as “Andenerias”. On an 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. If the weather permits it will be possible to visit the nearby hot springs in the afternoon.
The following morning, you will be transported to the Colca Valley to visit the famous Cruz del Condor (Condor’s Cross) vantage point, where you can observe condors which are majestically overflying the canyon. Then you will enjoy a gentle walk along the canyon’s edge. 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 4.800m.a.s.l.), the snow-covered Chachani mountain and the Aguada Blanca National Park, natural habitat of the beautiful South American camelids (vicuñas, alpacas, guanacos and llamas). We will arrive to Arequipa in the late evening and spend the night there.
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 16 - AREQUIPA
In the morning or afternoon, subject to your request. Pick you up for 3 hours Arequipa city tour. In this tour you will visit the Compañia church, it has a impressive Andean Baroque style and also its cloisters where young men were formed to become priests. After you will visit the beautiful Main Square, with its Cathedral and its impressive facade Classic style where we will enter. The interior demonstrates us a French pulpit, a Belgian organ of big size, Italian decoration. We will continue towards the Santa Catalina Monastery where you will visit the most famous constructions made in the Colony time for women, who wanted to become nuns.
In the evening you will be transported by private car to the bus terminal where to catch an overnight bus (10 hours ) to Nazca.
Included Excursions: Entrance of all sightseeing points & Guided Tour in Arequipa
Accommodation: 1 night in an overnight bus
DAY 17 - NAZCA
The Nazca lines, are one of the most mystical highlights of Peru. It is thought the lines were made by three different civilisations: 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 the mummies in their original setting: some of them are over 1,000 years old, and some of the other mummies still have their hair intact or soft tissue. For many years this place was looted by treasure hunters who left behind the corpses, lying all over the ground, along with human hair, ceramic fragments. 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 18 - DESERT OASIS OF HUACACHINA
Pick up early in the morning transfer to the desert oasis of Huacachina where is the place to do one of the most popular adventure tour in South America: the dune buggy and the sand boarding tour. 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 of the dunes. The other half of the tour gives you a chance to try the adventure sport called 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. If you definitely do not feel to try sand boarding, you will definitely enjoy the day: the gigantic sand dunes are beautiful and surreal, for example you can take multiple great pictures there. A tour into the desert feels like an “out of this world” experience. This day will end with a private transfer to Paracas where we will spend the night.
Included Excursions: Dune buggy and sand boarding tour
Accommodation: 1 night 3 star hotel in Paracas
DAY 19 - BALLESTAS ISLANDS AND PISCO
After your breakfast, tour guide will pick you up from the hotel and transfer to a pier to catch a motorboat at the mole of Paracas and go to explore the Ballestas Islands. These islands are also known as the ‘poor man’s Galapagos’ or as the ‘Galapagos of Peru’, they are spectacular, eroded into numerous arches and caves, which provides shelter for thousands of sea lions and seabirds. Over 150 species of birds live there (penguins, cormorants, boobies and pelicans). Although it is not possible to the islands on the land, 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 is possible to experience the similar flora and fauna, as well as an interesting interpretation centre. The next stop is the town of Pisco, where the famous Pisco Sour, the national drink of Peru got its’ name. Then private transfer will be arranged back 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 20 - DEPART LIMA
If you want to stay on longer in Peru and explore more, please contact us.
Our tours are customized for small group starting from minimum 2 persons and maximum 12 persons. The price shown in this itinerary is applied 2-4 persons.
If your group is more than 4 people, please contact us for the price.
We can provide a tour guide in some other languages like French, German, Polish, etc as you requested.
All our tours are aimed at people in good physical and mental condition.
Some tours requires better physical conditions than others: please check the “Physicality” information.
All accommodations are done in double rooms unless you ask for single room (with extra-cost).
Breakfast are generally included in the accommodation.
To allow the freedom of food option, lunch and dinner are not included in the tour, except Day 5 to Day 7. However, upon your request, we can arrange lunch and dinner with additional cost.
Some details of the tour may change depending on weather conditions, physical condition of the participants and other unpredictable things, for example strikes.
Our prices are “all inclusive” as far 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 in the “DETAILS” tab of the tour, and also the details of the “ITINERARY” tab that provides more information about optional excursions, visits or activities.
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 the scan of their ISIC card by email during the booking process and who then bring the original, valid ISIC card with them for the trip (without valid ISIC card, you would not only loose 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 booking process and bring valid document with them for the tour. In both 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.
RESERVATIONS & PAYMENT
To book any tour, first we will confirm its availability for your specific date. Then we need to receive an advance payment (50% or full payment) according to current prices and to have your full details (no errors), which are necessary to book the entrance tickets on your behalf.
Please note that your reservation is not confirmed or safe until we receive these elements.
VACCINATIONS & INSURANCE
Before travelling, you should always check current information about the necessary vaccines.
We recommend you to take the vaccine against yellow fever at least one week before your travel.
We also recommend purchasing 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 situation by being at departure location at least one day before the beginning of the tour.
Check requirements about passports and visas to enter Peru enough time in advance.
WHAT TO BRING
Here are some recommendations to remind you of some items that may be needed on the tour:
A lightweight water&windproof jacket with hood
Small collapsible umbrella
Sandals or thongs/ flip flops
Wide-brimmed hat or cap
Lip balm, sun block with high UV factor
Antibacterial hand cleansing gel
Peg less washing line & travel laundry detergent
Backpack for your personal belongings during Inca Trail Trek
Swiss army type penknife
Head torch or flashlight
Hard drive or USB stick to back up your photos
Travel plug adaptor with a USB port
Pocket size phrasebook
Travel sickness tablets
Insect repellent and bite cream
Travel med kit