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These two action-packed weeks focus on the famous sites of southern Peru - the Colca Canyon, the awe-inspiring ruins of Machu Picchu and the floating islands of Lake Titicaca... In addition to the cloud forest, llamas and condors, there's the chance to sample the styles of three contrasting cities - Lima, Arequipa and Cusco.

 

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Day 1: Arrival in Lima.

After a welcome from our team, we take you to the hotel to rest.

Day 2: Lima City Tour - Pisco.

Today we take a tour of the city, experiencing both colonial and modern Lima. We visit the main plaza, the government palace, the municipal hall, Lima cathedral, the archbishop’s residence, the catacombs of San Francisco, and the plaza of San Martin. In the afternoon we head along the Panamerican highway towards Pisco, stopping on the way to sample the cuisine and relax on the beaches of the south coast. After checking into the hotel in Pisco, those who have the energy can head out to sample the nightlife.

Day 3: Pisco - Ballestas Islands - Nazca.

After breakfast we take a boat to visit the Ballestas Islands.  The trip takes us around the Bay of Paracas and the port of San Martin. On the slopes of an enormous sand dune we see the giant drawing of mysterious “candle holder”. We also see sea lions and a multitude of sea birds in their natural habitat, whose idiosyncratic rock formations create one of the most attractive landscapes of the Peruvian coast. At midday we continue our journey towards Nazca, making a stop to visit a vineyard and the oasis of Huacachina. We arrive in Nazca and check in to the hotel.

Day 4: Nazca - Arequipa.

In the morning we take a flight over the impressive and mysterious Nazca lines. Later we continue on towards Arequipa. We make a stop in Puerto Inca, where can see the “Qolcas”, or storehouses, where the Incas kept their marine products. We arrive in Arequipa and check in to the hotel.

Day 5: Arequipa.

At an altitude of 2,400 metres above sea level, Arequipa is Peru’s second city, with a population of around 1 million. It is known as the “White City”, for its baroque architecture made from the local chalky volcanic stone sillar, a colonial legacy recognised by UNESCO, which has declared the central city a World Heritage site. The perfect volcanic cone of El Misti (5,825 metres) and its neighbour Nevado Chachani (6, 075 metres) hover over the city. Today we visit the labyrinthine monastery of Santa Catalina (considered by many the finest in South America), the cathedral, La Compañia church and the bustling San Camilo market. The night is free to enjoy the local restaurants and bars.

Day 6: Arequipa - Cabanaconde.

From Arequipa we head towards the Colca Valley, a picturesque Andean valley with villages founded in the colonial era, where the original inhabitants, the Collagua and Cabana ethnic groups, maintain their culture and traditions. Spectacular tiers of agricultural terraces, established from around 900 AD to allow irrigation and prevent erosion, are still maintained and cultivated by local people. We continue towards Cabanaconde, where the Colca Valley becomes the Colca Canyon. With a depth of more than 3,300 metres, the Colca competes with the neighbouring Cotahuasi for the title of the world’s deepest canyon, and is the natural habitat of the majestic Andean condor. We spend the night in Cabanaconde.

Day 7: Cabanaconde - Chivay.

After an early breakfast we head to the Cruz del Condor lookout point where we get close-up views the condors rising on the morning thermals in search of food. The rest of the day we visit the small villages of the Colca Valley and enjoy the countryside, before returning to Chivay.

Day 8: Chivay - Puno.
After breakfast, we head towards Puno, on the shores of Lake Titicaca. On the way we visit the stone forest of Imata where have lunch, enjoying the views of the landscape and native birds such as flamingos.

Day 9: Puno - Lake Titicaca.

Today we take a boat trip around Lake Titicaca and its islands. First we visit the floating Uros Islands, made entirely from reeds and inhabited by descendants of the Aymara culture. Later we continue to the island of Amantani where we will be welcomed by a local family. In the afternoon we take a walk to one of the island’s pre-Incan temples, and then in the evening enjoy a show of local folk music and spend the night with local families.

Day 10: Lake Titicaca - Puno.

After breakfast we board our launch to the island of Taquile, where we can observe local people’s customs including agricultural techniques which have been used since pre-Incan times. We have lunch and then return to Puno to spend the night.

Day 11: Puno - Cuzco.

From Puno we head to Cusco in a tourist bus, stopping by a number of interesting archeological sites and picturesque Andean villages on the way. We spend the night in the hotel in Cusco.

Day 12: Cuzco City Tour.

After breakfast the morning is free. In the afternoon we take a guided tour through the city. We visit the K’oricancha or Temple of the Sun - the most important Incan religious centre - and archeological sites including Kenco, Sacsayhuaman, Puca-Pucara y Tambomachay, absorbing something of the mystic tradition of the Incas in each site. Another night spent in Cusco.

Day 13: Cuzco - Sacred Valley - Ollantaytambo.

Today we visit the Sacred Valley of the Incas, including the markets of Pisac, the town of Urubamba, and the impressive ruins of Ollantaytambo.

Day 14: Sacred Valley - Machu Picchu.
Today's the day we've been waiting for.  We get up early to take the train to the village of Aguas Calientes and from there ascend to the magical site of Machu Picchu - one of the seven wonders of the modern world. After a guided tour and free time to explore the ruins, we return to Aguas Calientes to spend the night.

Day 15: Aguas Calientes - Cuzco.

Today we return to the city of Cuzco enjoying the stunning landscape of the region.

Day 16: Cuzco.

Today is a free day to relax, shop, and enjoy the beautiful Imperial City of Cusco.

Day 17: Cuzco - Lima - home.
A morning flight leaves from Cusco to connect with international flights from Lima. We hope you've had a magical experience!

Magical Peru

Included in the tour price
  • Flight Cuzco - Lima.
  • Flight over the Nazca lines.
  • All land transport between destinations and hotel transfers.
  • Private transport on days 3-9 of the trip (Lima - Puno).
  • All tour programmes named in the itinerary.
  • Local guides in each location.
  • An experienced, English-speaking tour guide who will accompany the group until Puno.
  • All entrance fees to national parks, museums,  and the Machu Picchu sanctuary.
  • 3 buffet lunches (Lima, Chivay and Cuzco).
  • 3-star hotels with breakfast

Not included in the tour price

  • International flights.
  • Food and drink for lunch and dinner except where indicated.
  • Snacks, mineral water, alcoholic drinks, entry to discotheques.
Information on food and drink
In the major cities there is a wide range of Peruvian and international cuisine available. A meal with something to drink costs between $2-7 USD. Mineral water or soda costs 0.30-0.50 USD for a half-liter bottle. A large bottle of beer costs $1-2 USD.

What to bring
Walking shoes with a strong sole (eg Vibram), flashlight or head lamp, hat or cap, plenty of sun cream, layers of light and warm clothing for a range of climatic conditions including a wind and water resistant jacket, camera with lithium batteries, ear plugs (optional), sleeping bag (optional).

For more information, see Frequently Asked Questions.
 
 
 
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