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THE HIGHLIGHTS OF SOUTH PERU – COAST AND HIGHLANDS
15 DAYS / 14 NIGHTS
 

During the 2 weeks through South Peru you will visit UNESCO world heritage sites like the NASCA LINES, MACHU PICCHU, the mysterious lost city of the Incas, the colonial city centres of LIMA, AREQUIPA and CUSCO as well as LAKE TITICACA, the world´s highest navigable lake, visiting the Uros, a group of artificial islands made o floating reeds and Taquile Island, famous for its textile art. The program also includes the SACRED VALLEY OF THE INCAS, the COLCA CANYON, one of the deepest canyons in the world, where you can admire the flight of the giant Andean condors and right at the beginning of this amazing tour we will go to BALLESTAS ISLANDS, an important wildlife reserve 240 km south of Lima, also called the little Galapagos with over 160 species of marine birds, including Humboldt penguins and huge colonies of sea lions.

The entire tour will take place on good paved roads with new vehicles and experienced drivers and competent English speaking guides will accompany you during the whole tour. You can also combine this trip with one of the tours we offer to Northern Peru.

 

1. day: Flight to Lima Arrival at international airport Jorge Chávez in the afternoon or evening and transfer to selected hotel
Hotel Britania *** or Antara ****

   

2. day: Archaeological Museum Larco Herrera – Lima city tour
After a late breakfast we will visit the most important archaeological museum of Lima, the Archeaological Museum Rafael Larco Herrera, which provides an excellent overview of 3000 years of development of Peruvian pre-Columbian history. Afterwards we invite you for lunch to the restaurant El Bolivariano, famous for its delicious typical Peruvian dishes, and then you can try in the authentic tavern Queirolo a pisco sour, the traditional Peruvian cocktail, made of grape liqueur and other ingredients. In the afternoon we bring you to the colonial city center, visiting the Plaza San Martín, Plaza Mayor with the cathedral and San Francisco Church with its catacombs. We will also make a couple of stops in the modern district of Miraflores, enjoying the beautiful view down to the Pacific Ocean.
Hotel Britania *** or Antara **** ( B /L )

   

3. day: Pachacámac – Tambo Colorado - Paracas
Today we will visit two important archaeological sites. In the morning we drive to nearby Pachacámac, a vast sacred citadel, built by the Lima, Wari, Ichma and Inca civilisations, place of pilgrimage and of the oracle with temples and palaces, such as the Temple of the Sun and the Palace of the Virgins of the Sun ( visit includes the local museum ). From here we head further to the south on the Panamerican highway, arriving within 3 hours at Tambo Colorado, a former significant Inca settlement very well conserved, especially the Temple of the Sun, the Palace of the Inca and the main plaza with the altar. In the late afternoon we will get to Paracas on the Pacific coast to stay overnight.
Hotel Posada del Emancipador *** or Double Tree Resort by Hilton **** ( B )

   

4. day: Ballestas Islands – Palpa lines – Maria Reiche Museum – Nasca lines look-out – Antonini Museum
In the morning we take a boat to a group of tiny islands, called Ballestas Islands, an important sanctuary for marine fauna with notable species like the Humboldt penguins, large colonies of sea lions and thousands of sea birds. On the way to the islands you will notice the famous “ El Candelabro”, a large-scale geoglyph dug in the rough desert sand and whose origin is still a mystery. Afterwards we drive further to the south, passing the wine-growing district of Ica and making a short stop after 2 hours in order to view the Palpa lines, made by the early Paracas culture ( 900 – 200 BC ), consisting of huge human figures etched on the desert. Just a few minutes from here is the Maria Reiche Museum, the former living and working place of Maria Reiche, a German mathematician and archaeologist who explored and investigated the Nasca lines during half a century. Then we ascend the look-out next to Panamerican highway to view two of the Nasca lines. From here it´s only another 20 minutes to Nasca and after lunch we still have time to vIsit the Antonini Museum which offers detailed informations about the surrounding archaeological sites and also has an excellent collection of pottery and textiles from the Nasca and Wari culture. In the garden there is a working aqueduct and a scale model of the Nasca lines.
Hotel Casa Andina Classic *** or Nazca Lines **** ( B /BL )

   

5. day: Flight over the Nasca lines – Cahuachi - Cantalloc - Paredones – Bus to Arequipa
After breakfast you can optionally board a small plane and overfly the most outstanding Nasca lines like the hummingbird, the spider and the monkey, amoung others ( 40 minutes – cost approx. 100,- USD ). Then we visit Cahuachi, the major ceremonial center of the Nasca culture, a huge complex of truncated adobe pyramids, terraces, rooms and patios. Before we take the modern, comfortable bus to Arequipa at 2:30 pm we still have the chance to see the Cantalloc aqueducts, a sophisticated and unique system of underground water channels, developed by the Nascas in order to irrigate the dry lands and which are still used by local farmers to grow cotton, corn, beans, potatoes and fruits. On the way to the bus station we make a quick visit of Los Paredones, an administrative settlement of the Incas with some well conserved adobe and stone constructions.
Hotel Casa de mi abuela *** or Tierra Viva Arequipa Plaza Hotel **** (B/BL)

   

6. day: Arequipa: City tour with visit of Santa Catalina monastery
Arequipa is the second largest and probably the most beautiful city of Peru with around 350 days of sun a year, also called the white city both because of its colonial origin of the Spanish conquistadores and because of its arquitecture, churches, mansions, walls, edified with the white stone ( sillar ) extracted from the surrounding volcanoes Misti and Chachani, not active anymore. In the morning we are going to visit the main square with its cathedral and some other important churches with their splendid facades and altars and we also will know the picturesque San Camilo market, where you can see all kind of fruits, vegetables, fish etc. We will have the whole afternoon for an extensive visit of the renowned convent of Santa Catalina, a spacious cloister for nuns, built since 1579, a masterpiece of colonial arquitecture in Andalusian-style with narrow streets, courtyards, gardens and wall paintings, a city within the city that shows more than 400 years of history.
Hotel Casa de mi abuela *** or Tierra Viva Arequipa Plaza Hotel **** ( B )

   

7. day: Arequipa – Colca Canyon
Departing from Arequipa in the morning we will drive to the altiplano, the Andean highlands, on our way to the Colca Canyon, one of the deepest places on earth; we can enjoy views of the majestic volcanoes Misti, Chachani and Pichu Pichu and will make photo stops in the National Reserve of “Pampa Cañahuas” to observe flocks of alpacas, lamas and vicuñas in their natural habitat. After passing the highest point of this tour at the Patapampa pass, located at 14730 feet a.s.l., we will descend and have spectacular, breathtaking views of the terraces of the Colca valley, arriving at Chivay, the biggest town of the valley, for a delicious lunch in a typical restaurant. Afterwards we walk to the local market to admire some of the skillful, colorful textiles ( embroideries ), local artisans knit of Alpaca wool and then we head to the small, lovely village of Yanque where we will stay overnight in a beautiful lodge with gardens and thermal baths.
Colca Lodge **** ( B )

   

8. day: Colca – Lake Titicaca
After breakfast we will travel to the “Cruz del Condor” viewpoint, the deepest part of the canyon. Here you will have a good chance to see and photograph the giant Andean condors who fly at close range to the canyon walls with the morning warm air currents to slowely ascend over the horizon. Our guide will take you for a short walk along the canyon (1 hour), before our vehicle picks you up and drives back to Chivay, visiting on the route fascinating villages with colonial churches and “miradors” (scenic lookouts) to behold the beautiful scenery of the agricultural terraces of the canyon with plantations of corn, wheat, potatoes and beans and taking pictures of locals in their typical traditional costumes. After lunch it´s another 4 hours drive through the altiplano to Lake Titicacaca, the highest navegable lake on earth ( located at 11430 feet a.s.l. ).
Hotel Eco Inn*** or Taypikala Lago **** ( B )

   

9. day: Lake Titicaca: Boat trip to the islands of Uros and Taquile
Today you will spend the whole day on the huge Lake Titicaca. At first a boat brings you in 1 hour to a group of tiny floating reed islands, inhabited by the Uros tribe, an ethnic pre-Inca group of fishermen who nowadays also offer nice souvenirs made of totora, a variety of reed the islands are composed of, as well as the boats and the homes of the indigenous. We continue the boat trip for another 3 hours to the island of Taquile, famous for its textile art and for maintaining its traditional way of life which nearly has not changed during the centuries. Knitting is exclusively performed by males. Women make yarn and weave. Upon arrival you have to ascend steep, winding stairs up to an archway, but you will be rewarded by a phantastic view over the lake as far as the snowcapped mountains of Bolivia. On the plaza of the island you will be invited to a delicious lunch and you can observe the men knitting precious, colorful textiles. In the late afternoon you will be back at the hotel.
Hotel Eco Inn*** or Taypikala Lago **** ( B / L )

   

10. day: Sillustani – Raqchi – Andahuaylillas - Cusco
After breakfast we drive in 45 minutes to the chulpas of Sillustani, a burial complex in a beautiful setting above Lake Umayo, made up by tall funerary towers where the pre-Inca Colla civilization who dominated Lake Titicaca, used to bury the mummified dead of their elite, before they were conquered by the Incas in the 15th century. We continue the trip crossing La Raya Pass ( 14222 feet a.s.l. ) and arriving 2 hours later at the vast archaeological site of Raqchi, built during the leadership of the Inca Pachacutec, an enclosure with eight rectangular buildings around a large courtyard, being the most prominent one the Temple of Wiracocha, an enormous rectangular two-story roofed structure. Before we arrive at the hotel in Cusco, we still make a short break in Andahuaylillas and visit the Saint Peter the Apostle Church, also called the “Sistine Chapel of America”, because it is considered to be one of the most beautiful representations of the colonial baroque art in America with magnificent frescos adorning its walls, the altar covered with gold leafs and a significant collection of sculptures and paintings.
Hotel Taypikala *** or Casa Andina Classic San Blas *** or Eco Inn**** (B/BL)

   

11. day: Saqsayhuaman – Kenko – Tambomachay – Cusco City tour
Before lunch we will visit the most significant Inca sites close to Cusco, beginning with Saqsayhuaman, a magnificent fortified complex with three immense terrace walls, made of huge stone blocks, the largest used in any building in prehispanic America ( the biggest ones weigh approx. 200 tons and have been so closely and perfectly spaced that a single piece of paper will not fit between them ). A few minutes further is Kenko, a place of worship where sacrifices and mummification took place and Tambomachay which features fine architecture composed of platforms, niches, and fountains fed by spring water from higher ground. In Inca times it was a sacred place dedicated to water-worship. In the afternoon you will visit the highlights of the imperial and colonial Cusco, the main plaza with the cathedral, the Coricancha ( the former Sun Temple of the Incas and the Santo Domingo convent), the Pre-Columbian Art Museum and the picturesque district of San Blas with artists´ studios and artisans´ workshops and with the best panoramic views to the city.
Hotel Taypikala *** or Casa Andina Classic San Blas *** or Eco Inn**** ( B )

   

12. day: Sacred Valley of the Incas: Pisac – Moray – Maras - Ollantaytambo
Today we will visit three important places in the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Only 30 minutes from Cusco is located Pisac, well known for its colorful Sunday market and for its impressive ruins which lie atop a hill at the entrance to the valley with beautiful views to the surrounding area. The site includes a Temple of the Sun, baths, altars, water fountains, a ceremonial platform, an Intihuatana (ritual stone to point directly at the sun during the winter solstice ) and agricultural terraces, among others. Then we go to Moray, where we can admire enormous circular agricultural terraces, used by the Incas to study the effects of different climatic conditions on crops ( especially potatoes ). Speculation about the site has led to discussion about Moray as an Inca agricultural experiment station. Not far from here are the salt mines of Maras, in use since pre-Inca times. You can take excellent pictures from the approx. 3000 salt evaporation ponds, glittering in the sun. In the late afternoon we arrive at Ollantaytambo, the best surviving example of Inca town planning with original Inca arquitecture, located at the foot of a spectacular Inca fortress which protected the strategic entrance to the lower Urubamba valley and which marks one of the few places where the Spanish conquistadors lost a battle against the Incas ( the rebellious Manco Inca defeated the Spanish in 1536, led by Hernando Pizarro, a younger brother of Francisco Pizarro ).
Hotel El Albergue *** or Pakaritampu **** ( B )

   

13. day: Ollantaytambo - Chincheros – Train to Aguas Calientes
After breakfast we climb up the steep stone terraces of the Ollantaytambo ruins, a major urban, military, religious and agricultural centre of the Incas. There are still about 30 Inca buildings you can visit, among them remains of the old Sun Temple, six huge blocks of stone, whose transport must have required a titanic effort and engineering performance. Afterwards we drive to the picturesque town of Chincheros, famous for its colorful Sunday Indio market and where you can observe a mix of Inca and colonial arquitecture. On the main plaza an adobe colonial church, dating from the early seventeenth century, has been built upon the foundations of an Inca temple or palace and a massive stone wall with ten trapezoidal niches is the most striking remnant of the Inca period. Then we return to Ollantaytambo and take a train to the village of Aguas Calientes, the starting point for the highlight of this tour, Machu Picchu, which we will visit tomorrow.
Hotel Incanto *** or Hotel Taypikala **** ( B )

   
14. day: Machu Picchu – Train to Ollantaytambo and transfer to Cusco
You will take one of the first buses in the morning to Machu Picchu ( in 30 minutes ) in order to visit the mysterious lost city of the Incas before tourists arrive en masse. Machu Picchu, one of the world´s archaeological jewels, the most significant tangible legacy of the Inca civilization, a religious, astronomical and agricultural centre, built in the 15th century by the Inca Pachacutec in an extraordinarily beautiful setting in the middle of a subtropical mountain forest, overlooking the Vilcanota River Valley, was only rediscovered in 1911 by the American archaeologist Hiram Bingham. Our guide will show you the ample, impressive site with all its temples, palaces, rooms, terraces, water channels, gardens and the observatory with the famous Intihuatana. After the visit you go back by bus to Aguas Calientes for lunch and then take a train to Ollantaytambo, where you will be picked up by our private vehicle which brings you back to Cusco. In the evening our guide will invite you for dinner to one of the best restaurants of the city and you can revive all the impressions and experiences of this amazing tour through South Peru.
Hotel Taypikala *** or Casa Andina Classic San Blas *** or Eco Inn**** (B/D)
   

15. day: Flight Cusco - Lima and international flight
You will have the last day of this amazing tour through South Peru at your free disposal to relax or for shopping in some of the souvenir shops you can find in the city centre of Cusco. In the afternoon we pick you up from the hotel and transfer you to the airport for the flight to Lima from where you will take your international flight to your home town.

   
 

Rates in USD per person ( in double rooms )

2-3 pax 4-5 pax 6-7 pax 8-9 pax 10-12 pax    
3.100,- 2.890,- 2.600,- 2.300,- 2.100,- 3* Hotels Single supplement 350,-
3.390,- 3.190,- 2.890,- 2.590,- 2.390,- 4* Hotels Single supplement 530,-
   
 

Services included:

  • 14 overnight stays in selected hotels in double or twin rooms
  • All services mentioned in the tour program
  • All mentioned meals ( 14 x Breakfast, 2 x Lunch, 3 x Box lunch 1 x Dinner )
  • Private transportation with experienced drivers
  • Knowledgeable English speaking guides for all visits
  • Bus, train and boat tickets
  • All entrance fees incl. Machu Picchu
  • Local flight ticket Cusco – Lima
  • Transfers in - out

Services not included:

  • International flights
  • Not mentioned meals and beverages
  • Insurance
  • Tips
   
 
   
 
 
THE COMPLETE SOUTH PERU TOUR
18 DAYS / 17 NIGHTS
   

THE ARCHAEOLOGICAL AND NATURAL WONDERS OF SOUTH PERU

During this extensive tour through South Peru you will visit UNESCO world heritage sites like the NASCA LINES, MACHU PICCHU, the mysterious lost city of the Incas, the colonial city centres of LIMA, AREQUIPA and CUSCO as well as LAKE TITICACA, the world´s highest navigable lake, visiting the Uros, a group of artificial islands made o floating reeds and Taquile Island, famous for its textile art. Unlike the usual classic Peru tours we offer you the chance to visit some little-known but impressive archaeological sites and gorgeous landscapes off the beaten track. The program also includes the SACRED VALLEY OF THE INCAS, the COLCA CANYON, one of the deepest canyons in the world, where you can admire the flight of the giant Andean condors and right at the beginning of this amazing trip we will go to BALLESTAS ISLANDS, an important wildlife reserve 240 km south of Lima, also called the little Galapagos with over 160 species of marine birds, including Humboldt penguins and huge colonies of sea lions.

The entire tour will take place on good paved roads with new private vehicles and experienced drivers and competent English speaking guides will accompany you during the whole tour.

   

1. day: Flight to Lima
Arrival at international airport Jorge Chávez in the afternoon or evening and transfer to selected hotel
Hotel Britania *** or Antara ****

   

2. day: Archaeological Museum Larco Herrera – Lima city tour
After a late breakfast we will visit the most important archaeological museum of Lima, the Archaeological Museum Rafael Larco Herrera, which provides an excellent overview of 3000 years of development of Peruvian pre-Columbian history. Afterwards we invite you for lunch to the restaurant El Bolivariano, famous for its delicious typical Peruvian dishes, and then you can try in the authentic tavern Queirolo a pisco sour, the traditional Peruvian cocktail, made of grape liqueur and other ingredients. In the afternoon we bring you to the colonial city centre, visiting the Plaza San Martín and Plaza Mayor with the cathedral and San Francisco Church with its catacombs. We will also make a couple of stops in the modern district of Miraflores, enjoying the beautiful views down to the Pacific Ocean.
Hotel Britania *** or Antara **** ( B /L )

   

3. day: Pachacámac – Tambo Colorado - Paracas
Today we will visit two important archaeological sites. In the morning we drive to nearby Pachacámac, a vast sacred citadel, built by the Lima, Wari, Ichma and Inca civilisations, place of pilgrimage and of the oracle with temples and palaces, such as the Temple of the Sun and the Palace of the Virgins of the Sun ( visit includes the local museum ). From here we head further to the south on the Panamerican highway, arriving within 3 hours at Tambo Colorado, a former significant Inca settlement very well preserved, especially the Temple of the Sun, the Palace of the Inca and the main plaza with the altar. In the late afternoon we will get to Paracas at the Pacific coast to stay overnight.
Hotel Posada del Emancipador *** or Double Tree Resort by Hilton **** ( B )

   

4. day: Ballestas Islands – Palpa lines – Maria Reiche Museum – Nasca lines look-out – Antonini Museum
In the morning we take a boat to a group of tiny islands, called Ballestas Islands, an important sanctuary for marine fauna with notable species like the Humboldt penguins, large colonies of sea lions and thousands of sea birds. On the way to the islands you will notice the famous “ El Candelabro”, a large-scale geoglyph dug in the rough desert sand and whose origin is still a mystery. Afterwards we drive further to the south, passing the wine-growing district of Ica and making a short stop after 2 hours in order to view the Palpa lines, made by the early Paracas culture ( 900 – 200 BC ), consisting of huge human figures etched on the desert. Just a few minutes from here is the Maria Reiche Museum, the former living and working place of Maria Reiche, a German mathematician and archaeologist who explored and investigated the Nasca lines during half a century. Then we ascend the look-out next to Panamerican highway to view two of the Nasca lines. From here it´s only another 20 minutes to Nasca and after lunch we still have time to visit the Antonini Museum which offers detailed informations about the surrounding archaeological sites and also has an excellent collection of pottery and textiles from the Nasca and Wari culture. In the garden there is a working aqueduct and a scale model of the Nasca lines.
Hotel Casa Andina Classic *** or Nazca Lines **** ( B /BL )

   

5. day: Flight over the Nasca lines – Cahuachi - Cantalloc - Paredones – Bus to Arequipa
After breakfast you can optionally board a small plane and overfly the most outstanding Nasca lines like the hummingbird, the spider and the monkey, amoung others ( 40 minutes – cost approx. 100,- USD ). Then we visit Cahuachi, the major ceremonial centre of the Nasca culture, a huge complex of truncated adobe pyramids, terraces, rooms and patios. In the afternoon we continue the tour visiting the Cantalloc aqueducts, a sophisticated and unique system of underground water channels, developed by the Nascas in order to irrigate the dry lands and which are still used by local farmers to grow cotton, corn, beans, potatoes and fruits. We will also make a stop at Los Paredones, an administrative settlement of the Incas with some well preserved adobe and stone constructions.
Hotel Casa Andina Classic *** or Nazca Lines **** ( B )

   

6. day: Pampa Galeras – Puquio - Chalhuanca
In the morning we leave towards the highlands, passing the highest sand dune in the world ( Cerro Blanco – 6232 feet a.s.l. ), climbing up a winding road to the National Reservation of Pampa Galeras at 12000 feet of altitude, a plateau with the highest convergence of vicuñas ( around 4000 animals ), the smallest but most precious – because of its wool - of the four species of camelids in Peru ( the others are lamas, alpacas and guanacos ). We drive on to the town of Puquio ( 9642 feet ), make a short break on the plaza in front of the church and afterwards there are again steep rises to the Yauriviri pass ( 13200 feet ) und Huashuaccasa pass ( 12900 feet ) with beautiful views for taking some pictures, before we go down to a green, lovely valley and shortly after the town of Chalhuanca we arrive at our cozy accommodation at a pleasant altitude of 7950 feet.
Hotel Tampumayu *** ( B / BL )

   

7. day: Abancay – Saywite – Tarawasi - Cusco
Today you will have the opportunity to know two interesting archaeological Inca sites in scenic surroundings on our way to Cusco. After 2 hours we make a first stop in Abancay, capital of the region Apurimac with a mild climate and some nice colonial buildings like the cathedral. After the traverse of the Soccllaccasa pass at 11700 feet we reach the ruins of Saywite, an ample site, regarded as a centre of water worship, being the most outstanding object a monolith, a 12 feet diameter rock with more than 200 engraved geometric and zoomorphic figures, whose significance is still under consideration. Not far from here we visit another archaeological site, called Tarawasi, a notable ceremonial place, built during the Inca Pachacutec rule with well preserved walls of polygon blocks of stone. Then we ascend the last pass ( Abra Huillque – 11700 feet ) and will get to Cusco, the former capital of the Incas.
Hotel Taypikala *** Casa Andina Classic San Blas *** or Eco Inn**** ( B / BL )

   

8. day: Saqsayhuaman – Kenko – Tambomachay – Cusco City tour
Before lunch we will visit the most significant Inca sites close to Cusco, beginning with Saqsayhuaman, a magnificent fortified complex with three immense terrace walls, made of huge stone blocks, the largest used in any building in prehispanic America ( the biggest ones weigh approx. 200 tons and have been spaced so closely and perfectly that a single piece of paper will not fit between them ). A few minutes further is Kenko, a place of worship where sacrifices and mummification took place and Tambomachay which features fine architecture composed of platforms, niches, and fountains fed by spring water from higher ground. In Inca times it was a sacred place dedicated to water-worship. In the afternoon you will visit the highlights of the imperial and colonial Cusco, the main plaza with the cathedral, the Coricancha ( the former Sun Temple of the Incas and the Santo Domingo convent), the Pre-Columbian Art Museum and the picturesque district of San Blas with artists´ studios and artisans´ workshops and with the best panoramic views to the city.
Hotel Taypikala *** or Casa Andina Classic San Blas *** or Eco Inn**** ( B )

   

9. day: Sacred Valley of the Incas: Pisac – Moray – Maras - Ollantaytambo
Today we will visit three important places in the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Only 30 minutes from Cusco is located Pisac, well known for its colorful Sunday market and for its impressive ruins which lie atop a hill at the entrance to the valley with beautiful views to the surrounding area. The site includes a Temple of the Sun, baths, altars, water fountains, a ceremonial platform, an Intihuatana (ritual stone to point directly at the sun during the winter solstice ) and agricultural terraces, among others. Then we go to Moray, where we can admire enormous circular agricultural terraces, used by the Incas to study the effects of different climatic conditions on crops ( especially potatoes ). Speculation about the site has led to discussion about Moray as an Inca agricultural experiment station. Not far from here are the salt mines of Maras, in use since pre-Inca times. You can take excellent pictures from the approx. 3000 salt evaporation ponds, glittering in the sun. In the late afternoon we arrive at Ollantaytambo, the best surviving example of Inca town planning with original Inca arquitecture, located at the foot of a spectacular Inca fortress which protected the strategic entrance to the lower Urubamba valley and which marks one of the few places where the Spanish conquistadors lost a battle against the Incas ( the rebellious Manco Inca defeated the Spanish in 1536, led by Hernando Pizarro, a younger brother of Francisco Pizarro ).
Hotel El Albergue *** or Pakaritampu **** ( B )

   

10. day: Ollantaytambo - Chincheros – Train to Aguas Calientes
After breakfast we climb up the steep stone terraces of the Ollantaytambo ruins, a major urban, military, religious and agricultural centre of the Incas. There are still about 30 Inca buildings you can visit, among them remains of the old Sun Temple, six huge blocks of stone, whose transport must have required a titanic effort and engineering performance. Afterwards we drive to the picturesque town of Chincheros, famous for its colorful Sunday Indio market and where you can observe a mix of Inca and colonial arquitecture. On the main plaza an adobe colonial church, dating from the early seventeenth century, has been built upon the foundations of an Inca temple or palace and a massive stone wall with ten trapezoidal niches is the most striking remnant of the Inca period. Then we return to Ollantaytambo and take a train to the village of Aguas Calientes, the starting point for the highlight of this tour, Machu Picchu, which we will visit tomorrow.
Hotel Incanto *** or Hotel Taypikala **** ( B )

   

11. day: Machu Picchu – Aguas Calientes
You will take one of the first buses in the morning to Machu Picchu ( in 30 minutes ) in order to visit the mysterious lost city of the Incas before tourists arrive en masse. Machu Picchu, one of the world´s archaeological jewels, the most significant tangible legacy of the Inca civilization, a religious, astronomical and agricultural centre, built in the 15th century by the Inca Pachacutec in an extraordinarily beautiful setting in the middle of a subtropical mountain forest, overlooking the Vilcanota River Valley, was only rediscovered in 1911 by the American archaeologist Hiram Bingham. Our guide will show you the ample, impressive site with all its temples, palaces, rooms, terraces, water channels, gardens and the observatory with the famous Intihuatana. After the visit you go back by bus to Aguas Calientes for lunch and the rest of the day will be at your free disposal for a visit of the thermal baths or just for relaxing.
Hotel Incanto *** or Hotel Taypikala **** ( B )

   

12. day: Aguas Calientes - Cusco
After a late breakfast you take a train to Ollantaytambo, where you will be picked up by our private vehicle, bringing you back to Cusco. On the way the driver will make some photo stops and you will arrive at the hotel in Cusco in the early afternoon. Enjoy the rest of the day and stroll around the picturesque city to get some nice handicrafts in one of the multitudinous souvenir shops.
Hotel Taypikala *** Casa Andina Classic San Blas *** or Eco Inn**** ( B )

   

13. day: Tipon – Pikillacta – Andahuaylillas – Raqchi – Lake Titicaca
After the recreative day 12 we will offer you today a varied program full of archaeology, colonial arquitecture and amazing sceneries. We leave at 7:30 am and stop at the archaeological park of Tipon, 17 miles southeast of Cusco, a worth seeing Inca site with enclosures, terraces and intact canals. Even today water rushes through the channels and the wide terraces are in perfect condition. Only a few miles further lies Pikillacta, an important site of the pre-Incan Wari culture ( 600 – 1100 A.D. ) with some well preserved structures. Then we visit the Saint Peter the Apostle Church in Andahuaylillas, also called the “Sistine Chapel of America”, because it is considered to be one of the most beautiful representations of the colonial baroque art in America with magnificent frescos adorning its walls, the altar covered with gold leafs and a significant collection of sculptures and paintings. Before we climb La Raya pass ( 14222 feet a.s.l. ) we still have time to admire the vast archaeological site of Raqchi, built during the leadership of the Inca Pachacutec, an enclosure with eight rectangular buildings around a large courtyard, being the most prominent one the Temple of Wiracocha, an enormous rectangular two-story roofed structure. From here it´s another 3 hours drive to get to Lake Titicaca, the highest navegable lake on earth ( located at 11430 feet a.s.l. ) where we will stay overnight.
Hotel Eco Inn*** or Hotel Taypikala Lago **** ( B / BL )

   

14. day: Lake Titicaca: Boat trip to the islands of Uros and Taquile
Today you will spend the whole day on the huge Lake Titicaca. At first a boat brings you in 1 hour to a group of tiny floating reed islands, inhabited by the Uros tribe, an ethnic pre-Inca group of fishermen who nowadays also offer nice souvenirs made of totora, a variety of reed the islands are composed of, as well as the boats and the homes of the indigenous. We continue the boat trip for another 3 hours to the island of Taquile, famous for its textile art and for maintaining its traditional way of life which nearly has not changed during the centuries. Knitting is exclusively performed by males. Women make yarn and weave. Upon arrival you have to ascend steep, winding stairs up to an archway, but you will be rewarded by a phantastic view over the lake as far as the snowcapped mountains of Bolivia. On the plaza of the island you will be invited to a delicious lunch and you can observe the men knitting precious, colorful textiles. In the late afternoon you will be back at the hotel.
Hotel Eco Inn*** or Hotel Taypikala Lago **** ( B / L )

   

15. day: Sillustani – Colca-Canyon
After breakfast we will visit the chulpas of Sillustani, a burial complex in a beautiful setting above Lake Umayo, made up by tall funerary towers where the pre-Inca Colla civilization who dominated Lake Titicaca, used to bury the mummified dead of their elite, before they were conquered by the Incas in the 15th century. Then we drive through the altiplano on our way to the Colca Canyon, one of the deepest places on earth and arrive after 4-5 hours at the small, lovely village of Yanque where we will stay overnight in a beautiful lodge with gardens and thermal baths.
Colca Lodge **** ( B / BL )

   

16. day: Cruz del Condor – Maca, Yanque, Chivay - Arequipa
After breakfast we will travel to the “Cruz del Condor” viewpoint, the deepest part of the canyon. Here you will have a good chance to see and photograph the giant Andean condors who fly at close range to the canyon walls with the morning warm air currents to slowely ascend over the horizon. Our guide will take you for a short walk along the canyon (1 hour), before our vehicle picks you up and drives towards Arequipa, visiting on the route little villages like Maca, Yanque and Chivay with splendid colonial churches and “miradors” (scenic lookouts) to behold the beautiful scenery of the agricultural terraces of the canyon with plantations of corn, wheat, potatoes and beans and taking pictures of locals in their typical traditional costumes. On the local market in Chivay we can admire some of the skillful, colorful textiles ( embroideries ), local artisans knit of Alpaca wool. After passing the highest point of this tour at Patapampa pass, located at 14730 feet a.s.l., we can enjoy views of some of the majestic volcanoes and will make photo stops in the National Reserve of “Pampa Cañahuas” to observe flocks of alpacas, lamas and vicuñas in their natural habitat. In the afternoon we get to our hotel in the gorgeous city Arequipa, located at 7000 feet a.s.l.
Hotel Casa de mi abuela *** or Tierra Viva Arequipa Plaza Hotel **** ( B )

   

17. day: Arequipa: City tour with visit of Santa Catalina monastery
Arequipa is the second largest and probably the most beautiful city of Peru with around 350 days of sun a year, also called the white city both because of its colonial origin of the Spanish conquistadors and because of its arquitecture, churches, mansions and walls, edified with a white stone ( sillar ) extracted from the surrounding volcanoes Misti and Chachani, which are not active anymore. In the morning we are going to visit the main square with its cathedral and some other important churches with their splendid facades and altars. We will have the whole afternoon for an extensive visit of the renowned convent of Santa Catalina, a spacious cloister for nuns, built in the 16th century, a masterpiece of colonial arquitecture in Andalusian-style with narrow streets, courtyards, gardens and wall paintings, a city within the city that shows more than 400 years of history. In the evening our guide will invite you for dinner to one of the best restaurants of the city and you can revive all the impressions and experiences of this amazing tour through South Peru.
Hotel Casa de mi abuela *** or Tierra Viva Arequipa Plaza Hotel **** ( B / D )

   

18. day: Flight Arequipa – Lima – flight home
You will have the last day at your free disposal; we recommend a visit of the Museum of Andean Sanctuaries with the famous mummy Juanita and the picturesque San Camilo market, where you can see all kind of fruits, vegetables, fish, flowers etc. Or cross the old colonial stone bridge ( Puente Grau ) over the River Chili and walk to the Plaza de Yanahuara with high palm trees, a beautiful church and a lookout, from which you can observe the 3 volcanoes. In the afternoon we pick you up from the hotel and transfer you to the airport for the flight to Lima and later on you take your international flight home.

   
 

Rates in USD per person ( in double rooms )

2-3 pax 4-5 pax 6-7 pax 8-9 pax 10-12 pax    
3.490,- 3.290,- 2.990,- 2.750,- 2.390,- 3* Hotels Single supplement 400,-
3.840,- 3.640,- 3.340,- 3.100,- 2.740,- 4* Hotels Single supplement 600,-
   
 

Services included:

  • 17 overnight stays in selected hotels in double or twin rooms
  • All services mentioned in the tour program
  • All mentioned meals ( 17 x Breakfast, 2 x Lunch, 5 x Box lunch 1 x Dinner )
  • Private transportation with experienced drivers
  • Knowledgeable English speaking guides for all visits
  • Bus, train and boat tickets
  • All entrance fees incl. Machu Picchu
  • Local flight ticket Cusco – Lima
  • Transfers in - out

Services not included:

  • International flights
  • Not mentioned meals and beverages
  • Insurance
  • Tips
   
 
   
   

UNKNOWN ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITES AND FASCINATING LANDSCAPES ON THE COAST AND IN THE HIGHLANDS OF THE LIMA REGION

 6 days / 6 nights       Private tour for 2 persons
   
During this varied 6-day tour we will see unknown archaeological sites on the coast and in the highlands, only a few hours away from Lima, the oldest pisco distillery in the area and enchanting landscapes in the nature reserve "Reserva Paisajistica Nor Yauyos Cochas" at altitudes between 10000 and 15000 feet, which are still an insider tip. The Cañete River forms many small lakes and cascades as well as canyons and on the steep hills the Yauyos and later the Incas created impressive terraced fields which are still planted today. In the small pretty villages of this region time seems to have stopped and on the hikes you are mostly alone and can enjoy nature and silence to the fullest.
   

Day 1: Cerro Azul/Guarco - Incahuasi - Lunahuaná - Uchupampa

In the morning we will leave at 8:30 am from the hotel in Miraflores/Lima to the seaside resort of Cerro Azul, where we will have lunch in one of the many restaurants known for their delicious fish and seafood dishes. Before that, we will have time to walk along the waterfront and visit the Guarco archaeological site of the local civilization of the same name. Afterwards we drive about 1 hour inland to the archaeological site of Incahuasi, an extensive former important administrative center of the Incas. From here it is not far to our hotel in Uchupampa, a district of Lunahuaná, known for its mild sunny climate, the good Pisco and especially for the adventurous rafting tours that can be made from here on the raging river Cañete. We can enjoy the large garden of the country hotel for the next two days and have the opportunity to jump into the refreshing pool.
Hotel Costa Sur       

   

Day 2: Catapalla ( Apiary Mis Girasoles - Distillery “Reyna de Lunahuaná” - Hike along the Cañete River ) Pacarán: San Marcos Excavation Sites - Huaca Daris    

Today we will drive first a few kilometers to the village of Catapalla, where we visit the Mis Girasoles apiary in a garden with many flowers and trees and get a detailed explanation of the processes of honey production and other products. Nearby is the oldest pisco and wine distillery in the area, Bodega Reyna de Lunahuaná, founded in 1863. After a short tour, which includes a tasting of different varieties of pisco, we will hike leisurely for a few hours on trails along the Cañete River and then have lunch. In the afternoon we visit two quite unknown, but well worth seeing Inca sites in the vicinity near Pacarán. We will go up to the San Juan lookout, from where we will have a beautiful panoramic view. On the slopes of the hill are half a dozen square granaries, the so-called Colcas de San Marcos, which served as storage facilities for agricultural products (corn, peanuts, chili, etc.) during the Inca period. We continue walking to the San Marcos complex . On the outside of the main wall, fish friezes in Chincha style can be seen, and inside there are rooms with typical trapezoidal Inca niches. The Huaca Daris is the second complex and its structures are similar to those of San Marcos with an exterior wall, rooms with niches and platforms. All the structures in this area are made of mud and stones, typical of the archaeological complexes of the coast. Afterwards, we will return to the hotel. 
Hotel Costa Sur

   

Day 3: Uchco canyon/Angel waterfall – Pikicocha lake - Vitis - Huancaya: Carahuayano cascade – Huallhua lagoon and cascade - Vilca: Cantagallo lookout -  Pucacha cascade -  Laraos

The next 4 days we will drive through the nature reserve Reserva Paisajistica Nor Yauyos Cochas, one of the most scenic highland areas of Peru, which despite its relative proximity to Lima is still an insider tip, probably due to the fact that there are few hotels in the 221 268 hectares of mountainous landscape. Today we leave as early as possible from the hotel, because we have a long drive ahead of us, but with many photo stops, during which we can admire several lakes (among others Laguna de Pikicocha and Laguna de Huallhua), waterfalls (Caída de Angel, Cascadas de Carahuayano, Cascadas de Pucacha) and the Canyon de Uchco, in addition to picturesque small Andean villages like Huancaya and Vilca (12500 feet  - highest point today). In the afternoon we will drive back along the beautiful route. On the way to the village of Laraos we see impressive prehispanic terraced fields on steep hill sides, which are quite equal to the famous Inca terraces in the sacred valley of Cusco. Shortly before nightfall we reach the cozy accommodation in Laraos.
Albergue Turístico

   

Day 4: Laraos: Cochapampa lagoon -  Pumacocha lake - Rock paintings of Quillkaska - Shutco canyon

Also today is full of scenic highlights. In this mountainous region lived from about 1200 AD the Yauyos culture, after which the nature reserve is named.  Like many other regional civilizations, the Yauyos were conquered by the Incas and incorporated into the Tahuantinsuyo. In the village square a local guide is already waiting for us, who will accompany us during the drive and on the hike through the Shutco canyon. Directly behind the village is the small Laguna de Cochapampa, which we pass (during the winter months from July to September the lagoon dries up completely and people play soccer there). We drive slowly up to the Laguna de Pumacocha at 14400 feet  and a few more km to the worth seeing rock paintings of Quillkaska at 15100 feet and then drive down to the Cañon de Shutco, which we will hike through in a few hours. Towards evening we will be back at the hotel.
Albergue Turístico

   

Day 5: Carania: Terraced fields of Carhua and Huantuya - Huamanmarca Archaeological Site.    

After breakfast we drive down from Laraos to the main road, then we turn off into a dirt road to the other side of the valley and after 24 km we reach the small village of Carania. From here begins a longer hike, on which there are both beautiful landscapes and an interesting archaeological site to see. During the trek of about 4 hours (back and forth) on an old Inca trail, we pass the majestic terraced fields of Carhua and Huantuya and finally reach the archaeological complex of Huamanmarca (Yauyos - Inca culture) at 12950 feet altitude, from where we have a fantastic view of the snow-capped peak of Llongote, among others. We take a tour of the site, where you can still see several well-preserved buildings. Afterwards we rest a bit and consume our box lunch before hiking back to Carania. In the late afternoon we arrive at the best hotel of Nor Yauyos Cochas, where we will spend the night.
Hotel Villarma

   

Day 6: Miraflores: Hike to the abandoned village of Huaquis - Uchupampa

On today's last day we take the road up until a junction and after a short drive we reach the pretty village of Miraflores. Directly from the village square we start a beautiful hike (about 3 hours round-trip) to the ghostly looking abandoned town of Huaquis. On the way there are breathtaking views into the valley and in the background the glacier Llongote accompanies us.  Huaquis was built and inhabited by the Yauyos between the 10th and 14th centuries. Later, at the end of the 15th century, it was annexed by the Incas. During the Viceroyalty of Peru, the village was transformed into an Indian settlement. When in the 19th century a road was built up to the village of Miraflores, the inhabitants left Huaquis, which until today can only be reached on foot. We hike through ruins of the village, where there are many abandoned houses, a still well-preserved tower and remains of a once colonial church. After the hike, we will take a leisurely 3 hour drive down into the valley to Uchupampa and spend the night once again at the Hotel Costa Sur

   
 

PRICE IN USD PER PERSON: 1250,-           TOTAL PRICE: 2.500,-

   
 

Included in the price

  • 6 nights in double room in 3*hotels with breakfast
  • All sightseeing mentioned in the tour description
  • Private vehicle ( 4WD ) with experienced driver
  • English speaking tour guide throughout and additional local guides for the hikes
  • Entrance tickets

Not included in the price

  • Lunch and dinner 
  • Tips, other private expenses 
  • Insurance

 

   
   

IMPRESSIVE ARCHAEOLOGICAL COMPLEXES AND LANDSCAPES BETWEEN CUSCO AND TITICACA LAKE
6 days / 6 nights        Private tour for 2 persons

   
In addition to the well-known archaeological sites in the regions of Cusco and Puno, such as Machu Picchu, Saqsayhuaman or Sillustani, there are a number of excavation sites worth seeing and downright spectacular landscapes on the way from the former Inca capital Cusco to Puno at Lake Titicaca. This trip is an ideal complement after a stay in Cusco. We will visit, among others, the last remaining Inca bridge Qeswachaka, the fascinating rainbow mountains of Palcoyo and the former Inca fortress Waqrapukara, located on a rock pedestal in the shape of 2 horns high above the canyon of the Apurimac River. From here and during the hike, there are breathtaking views down into the canyon, to the Inca terraces and to the rugged mountain landscape all around. The tour finishes with a boat trip on the huge Titicaca lake to the floating islands of the Uros and the island of Taquile, famous for its traditional textile art.
   

Day 1: Tipon – Pikillacta – Andahuaylillas – Raqchi – Sicuani

In the morning we set off for Tipon, 27 km southeast of Cusco, an impressive, extensive irrigation complex with terraces, buildings and a canal system that still functions today, which demonstrates the engineering skills of the Incas. Only a few kilometers away is Pikillacta, an important religious center and military base of the Wari culture ( 600 - 1200 A.D. ) for the fortification of the highlands. Here, too, many structures are still well preserved and worth a visit. Passing the small Lake Lucre, we now drive to Andahuaylillas to admire the so-called "Sixtine Chapel of America", a masterpiece of baroque colonial architecture with a magnificent facade, outstanding frescoes, sculptures and a gilded main altar. In the afternoon we visit the extensive archaeological Inca site of Raqchi with the impressive Wiracocha temple (built in honor of the 8th Inca ruler Wiracocha), of which up to 39 feet high walls and columns still exist. From here it is not far to Sicuani to our beautiful country hotel.
Hotel Wilkamayu

   

Day 2: Inca bridge Queswachaca and photo stops at four mountain lakes

After breakfast today we drive to the famous Inca bridge Queswachaca, a testament to tradition and ancient engineering. The last Inca suspension bridge ( 28 m long ) is made of woven Ichu grass and is completely rewoven and tied together by hand every year at the same time in early June by the locals of two communities, an important 4-day ritual in honor of the Inca ancestors. You can walk across the free-hanging bridge and catch a glimpse of the rushing Apurimac River.  On the way back we will make photo stops at four enchanting mountain lakes before heading back to the hotel in Sicuani.
Hotel Wilkamayu

   

Day 3: Rainbow mountains of  Palcoyo - Temple of Checacupe and Three bridges

Today's excursion takes us to the colored hills of Palcoyo, located far up in the Peruvian Andes (between 15000 and 16400 feet), where the natural minerals in the rocks have colored the hills ( red, green, blue, white, ocher ). One is immersed in a landscape as if from another world. While the other rainbow mountain Vinicunca is connected with a strenuous ascent, here you can drive up to 15500 feet by car and you only have to hike about 1 hour to the highest viewpoint, from where you can enjoy the 3 hills in all their splendor. Nearby is also a stone forest with curious and bizarre rock formations, from which you can also take great photos. In the background you will admire Apu Ausangate, the highest peak of the Cusco region (20950 feet). On the way back to Sicuani we will stop in Checacupe and visit the beautiful colonial church and the 3 bridges over the Pitumarca River (Inca - Colonial and Republican bridge). 
Hotel Wilkamayu

   

Day 4: Drive and hike to the Inca fortress of Waqrapukara.

Today the impressive ruins of Waqrapukara are on the program. Recently, there is a new shorter route from Sicuani to Pomacanchi and Santa Lucía and from there, after a 1-hour hike, you will reach Waqrapukara, which has the shape of 2 horns ( Waqrapukara means "fortress of horns" ), a mysterious complex from the Inca era. Historians believe that it once served as a sacred site or observatory. Waqrapukara is located at arguably the steepest part of the canyon at 14100 feet, revealing an incredible view from the very top of the Apurimac River canyon, surrounded by impressive Inca terraces. Shortly before nightfall we are back at our hotel.
Hotel Wilkamayu

   

Day 5: Tinajani canyon - Pucará (Kalassaya archaeological site + museum) - Lampa (Santiago Apostol Church) - Puno

Today we leave the department of Cusco and drive to the region of Puno. We cross the 14150 feet high La Raya pass and drive to the Tinajani canyon, where we can admire a forest of so called Puyas Raymondis, the biggest pineapple plants in the world with a height of up to 39 feet, next to bizarre rock formations. Then we will go to the small town of Pucará, known mainly for its famous colorful ceramic bulls, but also for the temple complex Kalasaya of the Pucará civilization ( 250 B.C. - 380 A.D. ) and a small museum where mainly stone sculptures and ceramics of this culture can be admired.  In the afternoon we will make a short tour through the beautiful colonial town of Lampa, which is called "La Ciudad rosada" because of the pink colored buildings. We visit the most beautiful church of the town, Iglesia Santiago Apostol, which also houses a replica of Michelangelo's Pietá.  Afterwards we will drive to Puno, the capital of the department, located at Lake Titicaca, the highest navigable lake in the world.
Hotel Hacienda  Puno

   

Day 6: Lake Titicaca - Boat trip to the islands of Uros and Taquile 

You will spend the last day of this trip on the huge Lake Titicaca. At first a boat brings you to a group of tiny floating reed islands, inhabited by the Uros tribe, an ethnic pre-Inca group of fishermen who nowadays also offer nice souvenirs made of totora, a variety of reed the islands are composed of, as well as the boats and the homes of the indigenous. We continue the boat trip for another 2 hours to the island of Taquile, famous for its textile art and for maintaining its traditional way of life which nearly has not changed during the centuries. Knitting is exclusively performed by males. Women make yarn and weave. Upon arrival you have to ascend steep, winding stairs up to an archway, but you will be rewarded by a phantastic view over the lake as far as the snowcapped mountains of Bolivia. On the plaza of the island you will be invited to a delicious lunch and you can observe the men knitting precious, colorful textiles. In the late afternoon you will be back at the hotel.
Hotel Hacienda Puno

   
 

PRICE IN USD PER PERSON: 1350,-        TOTAL PRICE: 2.700,-

   
 

Included in the price

  • 6 nights in double room in 3*hotels with breakfast 
  • All sightseeing indicated in the tour description
  • Private vehicle ( 4WD ) with experienced driver
  • English speaking tour guides during the whole tour
  • Entrance tickets + boat trip

Not included in the price

  • Lunch and dinner 
  • Tip, other private expenses
  • Insurance

 

   


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