Discover the highlights of Peru by visiting the most important Inca sites around Cusco and Lake Titicaca. This experience also combines exposure to the living culture of the Andean People – witness the history of weaving and community ceremonies and work, as you enjoy the Sacred Valley of the Incas and visit the Machu Picchu Sanctuary, a World Heritage site.
Itinerary: Day 1: Arrive to Peru / Lima Day 2: Lima / Cusco / Sacred Valley, Day 2 Amaru / Pisac, Day 3 Pumamarca / Ollantaytambo / Aguas Calientes, Day 4 Machu Picchu, Day 5 Maras & Moray / Chinchero, Day 6 Cusco City Tour & Nearby Ruins, Day 7 Cusco, Day 8 Cusco – Puno, Day 9 Puno / Llachon, Day 10 Taquile / Uros / Puno, Day 11 Sillustani / Juliaca / Lima Duration: 12 days / 11 nights Location: Cusco / Puno Fixed Departures: 2nd Saturday of each Month Time of year: All year round
Why travel with us?
Pioneers: We are the first adventure company to operate the Inca Trail, as well as to Choquequirao. Since 1975 we have been providing adventurers with authentic life – Changing experiences in Peru.
Eco Friendly Tour operator: Recognized as a World’s Leading Green Tour Operator in World Travel Awards, and verified as Sustainable Tour Operator by the Rainforest Alliance. We use Operating procedures to minimize our impact on the environment.
Experts in innovation: Travelling with us means discovering new paths away from the crowds. We have private campsites on our treks, allowing you to disconnect from the world and fully enjoy the adventure.
Highly trained: Our guides are not only experts in routes, they are also have been trained in first aid and every adventure you choose you will find a specialist who will help you to live it.
Less is more: A good trip is built through the best experiences. In Explorandes we care about personalized service away from the crowd and in small groups, which allow travelers to connect with the surrounding environment, history and culture.
Specialized equipment: To ensure the safety and comfort of your trip we have the best equipment for camping, kayaking, climbing, mountain biking, etc.
We put Quality first: In Explorandes we build unique experiences through the details. Our staff will make your trip an unforgettable experience.
Arrive to Perú / Lima
Assistance from the airport to the hotel in Lima. A city tour will be arranged through the colonial site of Lima where you will get to know the most iconic places of the Peruvian capital. A mix of history and gastronomy will be the main attractions during your stay. If time allows, we invite you to see our extensions and get the most out of Lima. (Meals not included. We can make and suggest reservations.)
Check in assistance at Lima’s Airport for your flight to Cusco. Upon arrival to Cusco we will have a 1 Hour transfer to Huaran in the Sacred Valley of the Incas where you will be able to rest and start the acclimatization process. We will make a quick stop along the way at Awanakancha, a demonstration center for South American camelids where we will have a close up view of the four species of camelids of the Andes. Overnight in Huaran near Calca, in the Sacred Valley. B/L
An early wake up for our transfer through Pisac where we will follow a dirt road that will take us to the community of Amaru, where our hosts, the locals from “Laraypas Indígenas de Amaru Association”, will welcome us and begin explaining their daily life, traditions and the work that the Association does on behalf of the traditional culture. After a short briefing, we will go into the fields to learn the ancestral agricultural traditions and participate in their daily farming routine. We will start with the “Weaving workshop”, including a short hike through a native forest, where we will collect the plants that we will use to dye our natural fibers. We will also discover the medicinal and culinary properties of some of these plants. The women of the community will show us their ancestral and weaving techniques that are still used today, ending with a delicious local lunch. Driving back to the Valley, we will appreciate the great views of the most impressive complex of agricultural terraces of the Sacred Valley, and will visit the village of Pisac and its picturesque market, which has scores of stands that exhibit and sell products. In the afternoon we will return to our Hotel in Huaran. B/L
After driving along the Sacred Valley, we leave from Ollantaytambo, on a dirt road takes us up the Patacancha Valley until reaching the community of Pallata. Here you can observe the native Quechua way of life where crops are sown and textiles woven with simple hand tools that have been in use for centuries. A steep ascent to the trailhead will bring us to the small archaeological complex at Pumamarca, a small Inca settlement overlooking the Patacancha valley that managed the irrigation system of the Inca terracing below. After visiting this site we will begin hiking through the terracing complex of Choquecancha, with great views of the surrounding landscape. A three-hour descent through these farmed terraces will bring us to the outskirts of Ollantaytambo Village where we will arrive for lunch. After lunch we will visit the Ollantaytambo ruins and fortress with time to visit one of the few Inca villages that has been maintained and looks very much as the Incas designed it several hundred years ago. Here we can see Inca canchas, enclosures of multi-family living quarters that are still used to this day. We will head to the train station in Ollantaytambo for your two hour train ride down the Urubamba gorge and witness the drastic changes from mountain vegetation to cloud forest. Arrival at the station of Machu Picchu Pueblo. Overnight in a Hotel in the Village. B/BL/D
An early half hour bus ride will bring you to the citadel for a guided visit, which on average takes three hours as your official guide walks you through the different sector of the hill-top citadel, with astonishing views, telling you aspects of life here that will take you back in time. Lunch is included and in the afternoon return to the village where the train will take you back to Ollantaytambo. Transfer back to your Hotel, overnight in Huaran. B/L
Maras & Moray/Chinchero/Cusco
Early departure by vehicle from the Sacred Valley to the Cusco High Plateau. From there we will continue our route to Maras. About 7 Km. (4.3 miles) southwest from Maras is Moray, a very unique archaeological site in the region, where enormous natural depressions or hollows in the ground surface were used for constructing irrigated farming terraces. What is surprising is the difference of average annual temperature between the top and the bottom reaches about 15ºC (59ºF) in the main depression that is about 30 m (100 ft.) deep. In these natural formations, nature has created environmental conditions or microclimates that in modern time people need create in greenhouses or hothouses to get the same results. Towards the northwest, of the Maras village are the famous “salt evaporation ponds”, where a considerable volume of solid salt is obtained; about 10 cm (4 in) high from the floor. The solid salt granulates and is then packed in sacks and sent to the region’s market; today that salt is being treated with iodine, thus, its consumption is not benign. Near these sites, depending on time of day, we will have lunch, with beautiful views of Chinchero, where the stone is the main protagonist, and is strategically located at the intersection of three roads that connected Cusco, Yucay and Ollantaytambo. At the time of Tahuantinsuyo, it was located on the road that led directly to Machu Picchu. We will have a chance to visit the Inca Ruins, the colonial Church and some weaving centers to witness the making of traditional weaving with natural dyes. Later we will be transferred to our hotel in Cusco. B/PL
Cusco city tour and nearby ruins
Morning free to roam. Leaving in the afternoon by vehicle we wind our way on the road to Saqsayhuaman, a vas fortress built on three platforms, overlooking the city of Cusco. From here we continue to Kenko, a site or worship with a high rock carved into the shape of a Puma, which dominates a series of canals, passageways painted with animals. The road continues uphill to reach Puka-Pucara and Tambomachay, a site with Inca baths. Return to Cusco, and visit the main sites around the Plaza de Armas – the Cathedral, the Inca walls with its 12 angled stone and the Sun Temple of Koricancha inside the Santo Domingo Church. At the end you can return to your Hotel. B
Enjoy your free day in Cusco, walking around the city, its museums and getting to know Peruvian and Andean culture first hand. Optional activities available upon request – from half day to full day programs in and around Cusco. B
Cusco – Puno
The tourism Bus from Cusco to Puno is a public bus, but only for tourists. It stops along several sites of interest and ruins, such as the seventeenth century church at Andahuaylillas. Behind a rather modest exterior we will see the interior of exceptional beauty, a Mudejar ceiling on a vault richly embellished with numerous murals and paintings. Next stop, you will visit the ruins of Raqchi, where the ruins are a high main wall of the Temple of Wiraqocha, probably the largest roofed building made by the Incas. On both side of the high wall, large sloping roofs were supported by rows of unusual round pillars and with finishes of adobe. Nearby are the remains of large rooms for housing and many circular buildings used to store food. The entire complex is surrounded by a large stonewall several miles long. From there the bus will stop at La Raya Pass, at 4,321 masl, to visit the steaming pools of hot springs nearby. The journey continues to Puno with a stop at the town of Pucara to learn about the Inca Ruins there and to buy some Toritos de Pucara, a local tradition for good luck and fortune in one’s home. Arrival in Puno in the afternoon. Lunch on route. The journey takes from 7 to 8 hours arriving in Puno around 5:30 in the afternoon. B/L
Puno / Llachon
We will wake up in the morning and take a 1.5 – 2 hours bus ride along the shores of Lake Titicaca to the Llachon Peninsula. We will enjoy stunning views of the lake and the local communities. Arriving in Llachon, we will settle into our homestay and head out for a hike in the community to meet local people and learn their customs. We can see how they live along the shores of the great Lake Titicaca. We will have the afternoon free to relax, enjoy the beach and explore the area. Overnight in a Homestay in Llachon. B/L/D
Llachon / Taquile / Uros / Puno
From Llachon we will board our motorboat that will take us to Taquile Island, where we will disembark on the dock to visit the locals known as the Taquileños. These local natives work under a communal economy, which has allowed them to subsist for centuries. On this isolated island the legend says that these people escaped from the main land life, which was full of hardship, and developed a society based on mutual cooperation. Upon arrival to the island we will climb the trail to the main plaza and walk around the village. Then we will visit a lodge managed by a local family where we will have a typical lunch. On our boat ride back to Puno we will stop at the Uros Floating Islands. Inheritors of an ancient culture, these lake nomads rely on the lake resources to subsist, just as their ancestors did, while living in their floating islands made out of Totora Reed, a unique way of life. From here we will get to Puno and be transferred to our Hotel. Overnight in Puno, dinner on your own. B/L
Sillustani / Juliaca / Lima
Morning transfer to Sillustani for a guided tour before heading to the airport, if time permits. The pre-Inca cemetery, on the shores of Lake Sillustani Umayo, is where we will find massive stone cylinders, which are known as chullpas -cylindrical necropolis-. This is where the great dignitaries of the Tiahuanaco culture were buried. Sillustani has been considered the religious capital of this culture. Sillustani was considered a sacred place for those who populated the plateau for more than three thousand years. Transfer to the airport to board ongoing flight. Connect in Lima for your international flight back to your country. B
SERVICES INCLUDED Hotels with breakfast, all Transportations in vans or buses, expedition train to Machu Picchu and back, meals specified, bilingual Guide. Entrances to sites. B- Breakfast / BL- Boxed Lunch / PL- Picnic Lunch / L- Lunch / D- Dinner SERVICES NOT INCLUDED Meals in the main cities, extras, taxes, tips, laundry services, additional tours, insurance and airline tickets. WHAT TO TAKE
- Good Walking Shoes (Rubber soles)
- Standard clothing used for travelling outdoor worldwide
- Light Outdoors Gear
- Rain protection gear, sun protection and insect repellent.
- Warmer clothes especially in the Months of May – July when temperature can vary from hot days to freezing nights. In the altitude layered clothing systems are best for Peru’s diversity.
We are located in Miraflores, a residential district and an excellent location for business or tourism, nearby you will find shopping, dining and recreation areas. Located 30 minutes from the international airport and 20 minutes from the historic center of Lima.
Conveniently located just two blocks from the main avenue José Larco Miraflores, and four blocks from Larcomar, our hostel is very near to the Pacific Ocean. We offer a new lodging alternative, make yourself at home in our comfortable and spacious rooms. In the safe and quiet business area of Lima, Miraflores is the tourist district of the city of Kings.
Tierra Viva Aguas Calientes
Tierra Viva Cusco Machu Picchu Hotel strategic location ensures our guests the best experience possible of the amazing Inca citadel. Our facilities are located in the quietest area of Aguas Calientes, facing the Urubamba River and surrounded by the Forest of Clouds. We have exclusively at your disposal, a bus stop from where our clients can directly take the bus to Machu Picchu or get to the archeological site after a 60 minute walk. Modern style, our Hotel has 43 spacious and comfortable rooms, a lounge with a fireplace, a breakfast room and a bar to relax and enjoy some drinks after a day of adventures. Our hotel has a panoramic lift that has been decorated with Andean inspired graffiti by the Peruvian artist Carolina Málaga. Near the entrance of the hotel is the dining room, where every morning a delicious Andean buffet is served, and the Reception Desk were you can comfortably do your check-in.
El Mapi Hotel
“Smart” and “contemporary” are the de defining elements of this hotel. Set in the busy heart of Machu Picchu Pueblo, guests are ideally located to admire, experience and enjoy this quaint village. The hotel’s concept seeks to create a place where our travelers can find efficiency and friendliness. A modern resting environment for guests eager for a visit that promises comfort and calm as they encounter Machu Picchu, one of the New 7 Wonders of the Modern World.
IFK Lodge Hotel is magically and mystically situated under the gaze and protection of the Pitusiray Mountain (Apu), on the banks of the Sacred River of the Inca – the Urubamba River – which runs through the entire valley, creating a unique micro climate, turning the area into a natural, cultural and eco-environmental setting, which in turn soothes us with its hum, inducing us into meditation and romance.
Sacred Dreams is a Unique Lodge set in Peru magical Sacred Valley. We utilized the natural resources of this abundant land in building the lodge to provide you with the highest level of comfort while maintaining the most respect for local customs and harmony with the environment.
Located in a beautiful residential area, Casa Esmeralda by Ananay Hotels, offers a quaint yet elegant boutique concept that meets the needs of today’s guests who demand a personalized service experience and the warmth only a place like Cusco can offer.
The hotel is located 1 block from the Main Square and next to several touristic attractions; One of the house was once part of the house of the mestizo Inca Garcilaso de la Vega, which has been refurbished for hotel services. The rooms are carpeted all with hot water the 24 hours. Wireless Internet and free buffet breakfast is included for all guests.
Hotel El Balcón
El Balcon is a pre-colonial house constructed around 1630 carefully restored in 1998 with the intention of offering first-rate lodging. Located in the colonial center of Cusco, only three blocks from the Main Plaza de Armas overlooking the city and the surrounding mountains.
Rupa Wasi Lodge
Rupa wasi lodge has a unique location in aguas calientes that provides spectacular views of the mountains of machu picchu. Our lodge has rooms with private bathrooms and balconies that allow our guests to take full advantage of these beautiful surroundings.
Hotel El Albergue
Originally opened in 1925 under the name of lodge Santa Rosa, El Albergue is a historic and romantic lodge, located in the Ollantaytambo train station little more than an hour away from Machu Picchu and the city of Cusco.
With only 16 rooms special detail is given to each and every one, resulting in an elegantly rustic style. Beautiful gardens visited by hummingbirds are engulfed by the aroma of fuchsia, passionflower, peaches and avocado trees which all adorn the early 20th century lodge. Step outside and catch the train to the spectacular ruins of Machu Picchu.
While you are at El Albergue you may spend your days visiting the Inca and Pre-Inca archeological sights of Ollantaytambo, Pisaq and Moray, river rafting and mountain biking, and enjoying the beauty and culture of the Andes.
Casa San Blas Boutique
Casa San Blas was first, just a dream: We aimed to have an old 17th century house restaured in to the traditional way, and at the same time have the modern standards of comfort and good taste. The design and building was indeed a challenge. We decided to use traditional materials, as adobe, stone, wood and leather for the building and at the same time include bedding & equipment of high quality. Now, after a few years in the market we are proud of what we achieved: A highly personalized lodging standards and a succesfull boutique hotel with thounsands of happy customers. Being the first “Boutique hotel” in Peru, back in 2003 drove us to design standards that would involve personalized service, learning opportunities, an architecture that is harmonic with the city and neighborhood as well as social and environmental responsibility.
Ananay Quinta San Blas
In this quaint neighborhood you will find Quinta San Blas an enchanting colonial-republican house completely renovated into a hotel boutique. With its top notch amenities and high quality service Ananay provides all the needs travelers search for after a long day visiting our beautiful city. San Blas, along with San Cristobal, is one of the oldest neighborhoods of Cusco. Inca temples in honor of their god of thunder were replaced by what is now the oldest church in the city. It has now become the bohemian sector of the Inca capital, painters and sculptors teeming the streets selling their wares.
Ananay Palacio Manco Capac
Manco Capac Palace is a hotel built on what used to be a XIX century Peruvian republican mansion. Built on the foundations of Manco Capac’s original Palace, this sumptuous house is surrounded by authentic Inca platforms and located behind the San Cristobal Church. Part of the palace wall is still standing and only a few meters away from the hotel.
Inkaterrra – Sumaq
Sumaq Machu Picchu Hotel is spectacularly located on the banks of the Vilcanota River in Aguas Calientes at the foot of Peru’s premier tourism attraction. The luxury property, with 62 exquisitely appointed rooms and suites, offers an exclusive guest experience infused with Inca influences and world-class amenities, services and appointments. Preparing authentic gourmet Peruvian cuisine, Qunuq Restaurant creates innovative and unique dishes that introduce ancient culinary traditions and exciting flavors to travelers and foodies. Aqlla Spa creates its own indigenous products with regional ingredients and incorporates historic Inca techniques in its treatments. Suquy Café & Bar mixes international and exotic native cocktails focusing on Peruvian herbs and fruits. Rather than do the exhausting mass-tourism day trip from Cuzco, Sumaq Machu Picchu’s guests fully experience Machu Picchu and the local Andean culture with the hotel’s proximity and ease of access to the legendary archaeological site and an array of indigenous culinary, cultural and nature experiences, from a Peruvian cooking and bar class to renewing vows in an Andean wedding to hiking, climbing and bird watching.
Machu Picchu Sanctuary Lodge
Belmond Sanctuary Lodge is the only hotel located adjacent to the ancient Inca citadel of Machu Picchu. It offers its guests exceptionally easy access from early morning to late afternoon, when most of the day visitors and buses have left. Sit out on a terrace and savour Peruvian cuisine based on produce grown on the Lodge’s own plot: this delightful hideaway is the perfect place to relax and unwind in the shadow of the Lost City.
Belmond Miraflores Park Plaza
Set in Mira ores, one of Lima’s most exclusive residential areas, Belmond Mira ores Park is an all-suite hotel offering breathtaking views out to sea. Its state-of-the-art facilities, spacious accommodation and pampering services make it the perfect hotel for both corporate and leisure guests. In Travel + Leisure World’s Best Awards 2014 it was voted #10 in the “Top City Hotel in Central and South America” category.
Inkaterra Hacienda Urubamba
Inkaterra Hacienda Urubamba is a contemporary hotel with colonial inspiration, built in the heart of Urubamba Valley (Cusco), among flowers, mountains and trees. It creates an enabling environment for mental, spiritual and physical rest. The hotel has a design inspired by the architecture of the Cusco region, with an interior design inspired by local materials. A luxurious Andean environment proper of the Inkaterra spirit preserves the authenticity of Peruvian highlands. It is ideal for family holidays, offering various activities at the Valley and its surroundings, which are perfectly designed to assist travellers with the process of acclimatization. These allow the discovery of ancient traditions on the Andean farm and emphasize the history, traditions, nature and charm of the Sacred Valley.
Hotel Belmond Río Sagrado
In the Sacred Valley of the Incas, among verdant fields and towering mountains, lies Belmond Hotel Rio Sagrado. Designed in the style of a local village, with charming villas constructed from natural materials, it o offers views of the mighty Urubamba River from each of the rooms. Located at a lower altitude than Cusco, it provides the perfect environment in which to relax and acclimatize. Rated #9 in TripAdvisor’s Travellers’ Choice Awards 2014 “Top 10 Small Hotels in Peru” category.
Belmond Palacio Nazarenas
Set in a tranquil plaza behind Cusco’s main square, this restored 17th-century palace and convent is now one of the city’s most exclusive hotels. An irresistible mix of ancient and modern, it blends Inca walls, a cloistered courtyard and ancient fountain with a fabulous spa, the city’s first outdoor pool and a cutting-edge restaurant.
TripAdvisor rated Belmond Palacio Nazarenas best luxury hotel in South America in its Travellers’ Choice Awards 2014.
The JW Marriott Cusco is located a few blocks from the Main Square among the main historical sites of the city, such as the Cathedral, the Qoricancha Temple and San Blas Neighborhood. The Hotel has been designed and built on the 17th Century Colonial Convent of San Agustin, declared National Cultural Heritage by the Peruvian Government. The Convent was restored with utmost respect for the archeological remains from Pre-Inca, Inca, Colonial, Republican and Contemporary periods, which render the Hotel its unique character and offer an incomparable cultural experience for all guests. Built at 11,154 ft. above sea level, it is the first Marriott property constructed at such high altitude, so a supplementary oxygen system is available in all of its 153 rooms for guests’ total comfort.
Belmond Hotel Monasterio
Close by Cusco’s lively central square is Belmond Hotel Monasterio, a restored 16th-century and important national monument. This delightful retreat, set around a stunning central courtyard with a 300-year-old cedar tree, is known for its exceptional architecture and a gilded chapel hung with fine works of art. Belmond Hotel Monasterio has won numerous awards. In Condé Nast Traveler’s “Gold List 2014” it was named the number one hotel in Peru.
Early departure from your Hotel to the Sacred Valley towards Pisac. Driving up, near the Pisac Citadel, we will arrive to Amaru, where Our hosts, the locals from “Laraypas Indígenas de Amaru Association”, will welcome us explaining their daily life, traditions, and the work that the Association does on behalf of the traditional culture. Duration: 8 Hours
This tour is geared toward travelers looking for unique experiences. Doing Yoga on a SUP board is a special activity in and of itself, add in the breath-taking landscape and rich cultural backdrop and the resulting condition is an absolutely unforgettable experience. The class is facilitated by an experienced yoga instructor.