Create indelible memories as you stroll the ancient cobblestone streets of Cusco, tour the Sacred Valley and its bustling Indian markets and eerie Inca fortresses, hike to the lost city of the Incas and unveil the secrets of the mighty jungle. Historic hotels, cozy mountain lodges, comfortable jungle cabins, exquisite local cuisine and the hospitality of the Andean people round up an unforgettable experience that, as the name suggests, will stay on your mind for years to come.
Arrival in Peru's capital city (Lima) After clearing customs and immigration, proceed to the reception area, where our local representative will be holding a board with your name on it. You will be greeted with a “Bienvenidos a Lima” and transferred to your hotel. The Miraflores and San Isidro districts offer excellent restaurants and nightlife options. We recommend you check with the concierge for expert advice on dining venues and nightlife.
On to the Inca Capital (Cusco) Early morning transfer to the airport for your connecting flight to Cuzco. Upon arrival in Cuzco, a representative will transfer you to your hotel. You will be greeted with a welcome coca tea (excellent for acclimation) and showed to your room, where we suggest you rest for a few hours. The Inkas built the Koricancha temple, the palace of Amarucancha, the imposing fortress of Sacsayhuaman, the baths of Tambomachay, the ritual sites of Kenko and Puca Pucara. Later the Spaniards used Inca foundations and granite slabs taken from the fortresses, and raised cathedrals, convents, churches and palaces in the most genuine Baroque and Renaissance style. The result is an impressive open-air museum, which you will tour in the company of our expert guide. As you visit the different sites, you will be introduced to the interesting history of this amazing city and learn about the Inca way of life and the evolution of the cultural scene after the arrival of the Spaniards. (B)
At leisure (Cusco) Free day for you to continue exploring the town at your own pace, hunt for traditional souvenirs, or rub elbows with the locals around a pisco sour in one of the local picanterias. Optional tours (at extra cost) include walking tour of San Blas historic district, rafting, mountain biking, hiking, horseback riding, ballooning, and visits to Inca sites and villages steeped in ancient traditions. (B)
Indigenous Markets and Inca Fortresses (Sacred Valley) This morning depart for the Urubamba Valley, also known as the Sacred Valley of the Incas, one of the most fertile on the planet. In the heart of the valley, you will stop at an ancient Inca town where locals have been gathering for centuries to barter their products in the central plaza: Pisac. Spend two hours visiting the market, bargaining for Peruvian handicrafts and jewelry and watching the locals barter beans and corn and other produce in their native Quechua language. Then take a short break to sip an Inca Cola with the natives in a bar and immediately depart for Ollantaytambo, a huge fortress strategically located at the entrance of the valley, where the Inca Ollanta was able to stop the Spanish conquistadores in a celebrated battle. As many other Inca remains, Ollanta is both magical and mysterious with its legends and converging energies floating in the air. We overnight in the Valley in a typical hacienda. (B,L,D)
At ease in the Valley (Sacred Valley) Free day to enjoy the Sacred Valley on your own. Optional tours (at extra cost) include rafting, mountain biking, hiking, horseback riding, ballooning, and visits to Inca sites and villages steeped in ancient traditions. In the evening trade stories with other guests at the hotel's cozy lounge, take a stroll around the village, or relax in the hotel gardens and marvel at the starry sky. (B,D)
In search of the Lost City (Machu Picchu) The train disappears in the distance as we get ready to start our memorable trek in the company of the legendary Andean backpackers. We have gotten off at km 104, two hours from Cuzco by train and a few hours by foot from Machu Picchu. After a brief visit to the Chachabamba archaeological complex, we take on a five mile ascending trail, which will take us to Wiñaywayna, an impressive archaeological complex that rivals the Lost City in both beauty and location. We stop to visit the site and take in the magnificent views of the Urubamba River Valley, beautiful waterfalls and the Choquesuysuy ruins, located on the other side of the river. Back on the trail, we hike for an hour along flat stones on the edge of cliffs, in a highland jungle until we reach Intipunku, The Gate of the Sun. Machu Picchu lies down below, surrounded by green mountains, under a blue sky interspersed with traveling white clouds. We descend to the village of Aguas Calientes for a hearty meal and a well-deserved, restful night. (B,L,D)
Visit the citadel. Afternoon train departure (Cusco) Rising early you will visit the citadel before the hordes of tourists arrive. Then it is free time until the afternoon train departure. Our guide suggests climbing up Huaynu Picchu (the other mountain), visit the Temple of the Moon and the fabulous Inca Bridge or relaxing in the thermal baths in Aguas Calientes. Tonight you will overnight in Cusco. (B)
The City of Kings (Lima) This morming fly back to Lima, where our guide is waiting to drive you to your hotel. The day is free for you to enjoy the City of Kings on your own. Optional tours (at extra cost) include walking tours of the Colonial District, guided city tours, and visits to Lima's world class museums. (B)
On to the jungle (Iquitos) This morning you will be flying over an infinite jungle crisscrossed by rivers that meander their way through thick vegetation. Your destination is Puerto Maldonado, a sleepy frontier town located on the banks of the Madre de Dios River. Upon arrival, you will be transferred to the Explorama dock, where you will board a boat for the 25-mile journey down the Amazon River to Ceiba Tops. In the afternoon depart for a hike in the beautiful primary rainforest reserve surrounding Ceiba Tops that includes many huge trees festooned with epiphytes. After dinner enjoy local flute or guitar music at El Tucan Bar or the guides are always ready to relate some of the many legends of the Amazon forest. (B,L,D)
Exploring the Amazon (Iquitos) The day begins with an optional early morning birding excursion. After breakfast we take a boat ride to visit a small village of Yagua Indians where our guide will explain their culture and how it has been affected by the passing of time. There will be an opportunity to trade for or purchase some of their local crafts and for a demonstration of the use of the blowgun, which some of the Yagua elders still use for hunting. Afternoon boating excursion in search of sloth, found in Cecropia trees at the water's edge, and the two species of freshwater river dolphin, pink and grey, found in Amazonian waters. Weather permitting enjoy a beautiful Amazonian sunset on the river. (B,L,D)
The Heart of the Amazon (Iquitos) Early morning departure by boat to ExplorNapo Lodge for breakfast. Hike to the spectacular Canopy Walkway spanning over 500 meters (one-third of a mile), connected by tree platforms, and reaching a height of over 115 feet but accessible without any type of climbing skill or equipment. After lunch, visit the ReNuPeRu Ethnobotanical Garden where over 240 medicinal plants are cultivated by a local shaman who will explain the nature of Amazonian natural healing and the uses of some of the plants. Return to Ceiba Tops in time to enjoy the pool or hammocks before dinner. (B,L,D)
Back to civilization (Lima) Boating or walking excursion to further enjoy the rainforest surrounding Ceiba Tops, or if you prefer, time to relax at the hammock house or enjoy the pool and lodge gardens. Afternoon journey back to Iquitos in time for your flight back to Lima, where our guide is waiting to transfer you to your hotel. Free evening. (B,L)
Depart Peru At the appointed time our guide will transfer you back to the airport in time for your international departure flight. We wish you a pleasant trip back home and hope to enjoy your company in another exciting adventure very soon. (B)
From: $3,496 per person in double occupancy
Peru Special : Book any 2010 departure and receive a $100 per person discount!
Departure: Mondays, Thursdays, and Saturdays year round. Most recommendable from March through November
Duration: 13 Days / 12 Nights
Type of services: Private services throughout with bilingual guides except in the Inca Trail and Puerto Maldonado, where services are operated in small groups.
Highlights: Cusco, the former Inca Capital; bargaining for unique handicrafts in the colorful Pisac Market; the magical Sacred Valley; hiking to Machu Picchu along the legendary Inca Trail; the Amazon region.
Inoculations: There are no mandatory inoculations required to travel anywhere in Peru. Yet, we strongly recommend that you speak with your physician.
Travel documents: American, Canadian and European Union citizens only need a valid passport for stays of up to 30 days.
Inclusions: All ground and air transportation at the destination; lodging, meals and tours per itinerary; hotel taxes; English-speaking assistance.
Not included: International airfares; airport departure taxes; tips of any kind; incidentals at hotels; any meals not included in the itinerary; alcoholic beverages; souvenirs.
It is the travelers responsibility to have all proper travel documents which can include passports and foreign visas. Learn more here: Passport & Visa Information
Travel Insurance is highly recommended to protect your travel investment and for any emergencies that could occur while traveling. Learn more here: Travel Insurance
All rates are “From Prices”
and correspond to the lowest season in the year.
Expect moderate to high increases for high season
and holiday periods. Low season dates vary from
destination to destination. Please inquire for details.
All rates on this website are per person and based
on double occupancy, unless otherwise indicated.
If a hotel included in a program is not available
at the time of the reservation, we will substitute
it for a hotel of similar category.
Room and cabin upgrades are available at most hotels
and cruises. Please inquire at the time of reservation.
Most programs can be customized.
All itineraries are subject to change without notice.