DAY 1: LIMA
You will be welcomed at Lima airport by one of our drivers, and driven to the hotel. Night at the hotel.
There are no activities planned for the first day as most international flights arrive in the late afternoon/evening.
Your hotel transfer is guaranteed, no matter what your arrival time.
DAY 2: LIMA AREQUIPA.
Your tour of Peru starts properly today. A tour of Lima is planned for the morning: Lima is the capital of Peru, and is home to approximately a third of the country´s population. It is also a city of striking contrasts: between the colonial historical center and the modern, vibrant Miraflores district overlooking the Pacific Ocean.
In the afternoon, you will leave for Arequipa, Peru’s second city. Transfer to the hotel, in the heart of the city’s historical center. Night at the hotel.
DAY 3: AREQUIPA
A tour of Arequipa is planned for the morning, starting with the ancient district of Yanahuara, the Carmen Alto viewpoint over the city and its three volcanoes, the colonial center with the Company of Jesus´ cloisters, the markets and the Santa Catalina monastery, one of the biggest religious structures in Peru.
Free afternoon in the city. Night at the hotel.
DAY 4: AREQUIPA CAÑON DE COLCA
In the morning, you will leave for the Colca Canyon. You will ascend the “altiplano” and cross the Aguada Blanca natural reserve (at an altitude of 4000m), where you will discover vicunas, llamas, alpacas and possibly even viscachas. You will then ascend up to 4900 meters, reaching the peak (literally) of your Peruvian tour, before descending back down to Chivay (3500 meters) in the Colca Valley for lunch (not included). After lunch, you will be able to take a stroll towards the thermal baths, where the water is nearing 40º C (optional entry which costs around 4 US$, not included).
Night at the Hotel.
DAY 5: COLCA CANYON – PUNO
Early-morning departure to the «Cruz del Condor» viewpoint, just along the valley. This viewpoint offers a stunning view across the canyon, and the river 1000 meters below. All being well, you’ll be able to watch the slow and majestic flight of the condors. According to our previous travelers, this is one of the highlights of the trip!
In the afternoon, you will leave for Puno: a 4-5 hour bus ride will take you through more infinite and beautiful landscapes. Arrival in Puno, city located on the shores of the Lake Titicaca, in the late-afternoon. Transfer to the hotel.
DAY 6: LAKE TITICACA UROS – TAQUILE
This excursion begins at 6:30am with transfer from your hotel to the port. Then by motor boat we visit the Uros floating Islands. Stepping on them feels very much like a water bed (but it is quite safe). We see the houses, the islands and meet its friendly inhabitants.Uros people are descendents of one of the oldest South American groups. Rides on traditional reed boats can be arranged. In the mornings these islands can be crowded. We visit two of the 80 islands before continuing on to Taquile Island. we get to Taquile island. There a unique community can be observed. A long path gradually ascending will take us to the village, the views are unique and worth’s. (45 min. hike approx) to visit the communal cooperative where you will find handy craft textiles of high quality. Lunch at one of the many local restaurants. The views are magnificent. Then we descent 500 steps down to the main port of the island. at 2:30pm approx. depart back to Puno City (3 hour return journey). At 5.30pm Arrival to Puno. we transfer you to your Puno hotel.
DAY 7: PUNO – CUSCO
Morning departure towards Cusco. You will make a first stop in Pukara, where the early altiplano civilization was developed, long before the Incas. You will then head across to the La Raya pass, at an altitude of 4370 meters, where you will leave the altiplano in your descent towards the Vilcanota valley. In the afternoon, you will visit Raqchi, an ancient Inca site, as well as the Andahuaylillas village and church. Towards the end of the afternoon, you will arrive in Cusco, the ancient Inca capital and without a doubt the most beautiful city in Peru. You will be taken to your Hotel.
DAY 8: CUSCO
We’ll pick you up from your hotel, with our guide we are going to visit the Cathedral there are magnificent colonial art and paintings, after we will visit some of the most impressive Inca stonework and the most important religious center at Qoricancha (Temple of the Sun). Then we will visit the impressive Incan fortress of Sacsayhuaman and Archaeological sites including Qenqo, Puca Pucara and the spring shrine of Tambomachay. We will end the tour at San Pedro market. In the afternoon you have free time. Hotel accommodation.
DAY 9: CUZCO – CHINCHERO – MORAY – MARAS – OLLANTAYTAMBO.
Early morning departure towards the Sacred Valley (by private vehicle), where you will visit one of the most extensive and spectacular ancient Inca cities. Chinchero is also famous for its craft workshops., your next destination will be the Inca terrasses in Moray and the salt basins in Maras, where the salt cultivation is still performed in an artisanal fashion. Your day will end with a visit of the Inca fortress of Ollantaytambo. Night at the hotel
DAY 10: OLLANTAYTAMBO – MACHUPICCHU – CUSCO
In the morning, you will take a train to Aguas Calientes, from which a bus will take you up to Machu Picchu. Visiting Machu Picchu is the climax of any tour around Peru, and its position amongst the wonders of the world is very much justified. The beauty of the Inca constructions is in perfect harmony with that of its surrounding nature. You will have several free hours in order to explore at your own pace. In the afternoon, the bus will take you back to Aguas Calientes, so you can catch the train back to Cusco. Arrival in Cusco in the evening. Night at the hotel.
DAY 11: CUSCO – LIMA – RETURN
Airport transfer to take flight back to Lima. End of your tour “Essentials of Peru”!
Please note that if your flight is early in the morning, you must schedule in an extra night in Lima the night before your international flight.