The Best of Peru 12D/11N
- Tour Type: Hiking and culture
- Good For: Anyone with a moderate level of fitness
- Difficulty: Moderate
Peru is an incredibly diverse country, a place everyone simply falls in love with. This will be one of the most unique adventures you’ve ever experienced. On this journey you will discover Peru’s most visited destinations: Lima, city of internationally recognized fine dining; Arequipa/Colca Canyon with vistas of incredible volcanoes; Puno/Lake Titicaca and finally magnificent Cusco, our gateway to Machu Picchu. Travelling from the Pacific coast to the tops of the Andes, this is a tour where you get to see the best Peru has to offer: history, archeology, nature, and especially culture….Peru awaits you.
Day 1: Lima
- Arrival in Lima with private transfer to your 3* Miraflores hotel.
Day 2: Lima City Tour
- After breakfast we begin with a walking tour of the historic center of Lima, the famous “City of the Kings” an UNESCO World Cultural Heritage site.
- We continue to the Santo Domingo Convent, a 16th century architectural masterpiece, where you will learn some of the history of two of our patron saints: Rose of Lima and Martin of Porras.
- We return to Miraflores to visit “Parque del Amor” with incredible view of the Pacific Ocean.
- The Larco Museum is our final stop with an amazing private collection that tells the story of more than 3000 years of Pre-Columbian history.
- Accommodations: 3* Hotel Lima (Miraflores).
Day 3: Arequipa
- After breakfast we fly from Lima to Arequipa
- We check-in to our hotel and then tour the city and its famous historic downtown, another UNESCO Cultural World Heritage site.
- Nearby is the Santa Catalina Convent, a grand 16th century religious complex and sanctuary.
- We end our day visiting two traditional districts, Cayma and Yanahuara to shop and have dinner.
- Accommodations: 3* hotel Arequipa.
Day 4: Colca Canyon
- Today we make our way to one of the world’s deepest canyons: Colca Canyon, 165 km from Arequipa. Along the way we pass through Pampas Cañahuas, a plain in the shadow of the Aguada Blanca y Salinas National Reserve surrounded by peaks and precipices.
- We stop at Patahuasi, a small village in the valley, and later ascend to 4000m.
- Next is the town of Chivay whose citizens are incredibly warm and welcoming. It boasts a Pre-Incan bridge, an 18th century Colonial church, a lively market, and the La Calera hot springs. The afternoon is free to enjoy the thermal waters or the comfort of your hotel.
- Accommodations: 3* hotel Yanque.
Day 5: Cruz Del Condor - Puno
- Today begins with an early start to drive to the Cruz del Condor, a natural lookout 60 km away. It’s a perfect spot for watching the world’s largest bird, the majestic Andean condor, glide on the wind.
- On the return we stop at the village of Pincholo, famous for its cheeses and artisans.
- We then visit Maca and its charming handicraft market and Colonial church.
- The day finishes with the drive to Puno.
- Accommodations: 3* hotel Puno.
Day 6: Puno-Lake Titicaca
- Today is a full day excursion on Lake Titicaca, the world’s highest navigable lake at 3808m.
- Our boat takes us to the floating Uros Islands, just 6 km from Puno.
- A short distance away is Taquile Island, where the community will offer a traditional welcome wearing their traditional colorful outfits. From here the views become even better with the color of the lake turning a deep blue against the majestic surrounding Andes. Accommodations: 3* hotel Puno.
Day 7: Puno-Cusco-La Raya-Raqchi-Andahuaylillas
- After an early breakfast we begin our journey to Cusco.
- We stop briefly at La Raya Pass which is a prime location for its scenic views.
- Next is a tour of the Inca Raqchi archaeological site, renowned for its massive temple to the god Viracocha.
- The village of Andahuaylillas is next where you visit an architectural masterpiece: its main church, built in the 17th century, with finely painted interior walls. Accommodation: 3* hotel Cusco.
Day 8: Cusco
- After breakfast we leave for a tour of Cusco’s historical center, another UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site. We visit Korikancha (Temple of the Sun) and the Cathedral, home to finely carved wooden art pieces and impressive altars.
- We travel by van to Sacsayhuaman, a massive Inca fort that once guarded the Imperial city and then continue to three other important archeological sites nearby: Qenko, Tambomachay, and Puca Pucara.
Day 9: Cusco
- Today is a free day to explore the city on your own. Enjoy a day off in Cusco to explore the markets and have a taste of local cuisine.
Day 10: Cusco-Sacred Valley-Ollantaytambo
- After breakfast and private van pick up we discover the best of the Sacred Valley starting with the Inca Balcony in Chinchero where families still preserve traditional ways by sharing the ancestral way to process wool to obtain the vivid colors used for Incan textiles.
- We then drive to Ollantaytambo, one of the most important architectural complexes of the ancient Inca Empire. Ollantaytambo was a highly effective fortress, that also served as a temple. Ollantaytambo is the best surviving example of Inca city planning, with narrow cobblestone streets that has been continuously inhabited since the 13th century.
Day 11: Ollantaytambo-Aguas Caliente-Machu Picchu-Cusco
- After an early breakfast we board our train to Aguas Calientes.
- In Aguas Caliente we board a bus to the main gate of Machu Picchu.
- A 2.5 hour walking tour by our guide will discuss Inca civilization and details of this important citadel.
- After the tour you can explore on your own or climb Huayna Picchu (optional, must be booked in advance).
- Late afternoon we return to Aguas Calientes to board our train to Ollantaytambo.
- A private van will bring you back to Cusco.
Day 12: Cusco-Lima
- At the scheduled time we provide transfer to Cusco airport for your return flight to Lima to connect to your International Departure.
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