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Peru Essentials 15 days will take you to the most important cities in Peru, experiencing culture, history, Peruvian cuisine, coast, and the Andes.
Explore Lima the capital of Peru, strolling through its modern and historical sides and feeding your palette with delicious seafood dishes of Ceviche. Stroll the lovely city of Arequipa known as the White city surrounded by volcanoes and continue to Colca Canyon one of the deepest canyons on the planet to see the immense condors flying over the canyon. Continue the adventure with a visit to Lake Titicaca the, largest navigable lake on earth immersing yourself in ancient cultures. Journey through the Altiplano en route to the Inca City of Cusco to discover the world of the Incas. Tour the stunning Sacred Valley of the Incas with its picturesque landscapes and the archeological sites of Pisac and Ollantaytambo. Hike the Short Inca Trail to the glorious Machu Picchu taking in beautiful landscapes and passing through Inca Ruins. Revel in the beauty and mystery of Machu Picchu, one of the Seven Wonders of the World. Delve into the amazing biodiversity of the Amazon of Puerto Maldonado visiting the Tambopata Reserve and the diverse wildlife, bird species, monkeys, and much more.
Upon your arrival at the Lima airport, our View Peru representative will greet you and take you to your comfortable hotel in Miraflores. Our representative will assist you with check-in and give you a briefing of your upcoming tours and other important information. Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure in the beautiful coastal city of Lima.
After a delicious breakfast, our well-versed guide will meet you in your hotel to start the half-day tour of Lima, the capital of Peru visiting the beautiful contrast between the modern and historic sides of the city.
The historical part of Lima was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1991.
Our tour takes us through the Main Square observing the Cathedral and San Francisco Convent., where you will find the mysterious catacombs. Then we will pass through the modern side of Lima, admiring Miraflores and San Isidro neighborhoods and LarcoMar where you can enjoy a delectable Ceviche with splendid views of the Pacific Ocean. Time to discover Lima, the City of Kings at your leisure.
Alternative Tours in Lima:
Lima Gourmet Tour
Lima City Tour + Larco Museum
Pachacamac ruins + Lima City Tour
Biking in Lima
In the morning our representative will meet you in your hotel and transfer you to the Lima airport for your flight to Arequipa (2335mt.), known as the White City. Arrive at the Arequipa airport where our View Peru representative will meet you and take you to your hotel in the center of the city. Settle in and have a delicious lunch in a Picanteria restaurant, which is very traditional in this lovely city. In the afternoon our professional guide will greet you at your hotel to start the exciting tour of the stunning city of Arequipa, surrounded by the majestic snow-capped volcanoes of Misti, Chachani, and Pichu Pichu. Arequipa`s historical center was declared a UNESCO, World Heritage in 2000.
Our tour begins at, Yanahuara and Carmen Alto Viewpoints to take in breathtaking vistas of the old colonial section of the city of Arequipa and the impressive volcanoes. Then we return to the center to explore the energetic historical center known as the Plaza de Armas with colonial buildings made of pink or white volcanic rock (sillar) and the huge Basilica Cathedral that exhibits many colonial treasures. Next, we will tour the Monastery of Santa Catalina, an architectural wonder built in 1579 and under the order of the Dominican Nuns, that will take you back in time. Then we will visit the Cloister and Church Compañia of Jesus and finally the colorful Cupola of San Ignacio. Enjoy the rest of the day at your leisure exploring the stunning city and shopping for the finest vicuña wool and clothing.
After a lovely breakfast in your hotel, we depart Arequipa for a 4-hour ride en route to the city of Chivay, Colca Canyon (3270mt.). On the route, you will observe exhilarating visions of the impressive volcanoes, Chachani and Pichu Picchu looming over you. We will stop at the Salinas and Aguada Blanca National Park to see the adorable camelids, vicuñas, alpacas, llamas, guanacos, pristine lagoons, wetlands, and the surrounding picturesque landscapes. Upon arriving in the town of Chivay, you will enjoy a delightful lunch before going to your hotel. Optional visit of the hot springs.
Today we start off very early from your hotel and drive to Cruz del Condor in the Colca Canyon, the second deepest canyon in the world. Discover the world of the great condors soaring over Colca Canyon and sometimes you may catch a glimpse of the condors perched on a rock ready for a picture. Take an awe-inspiring look at the depth of the Colca Canyon and snap many pictures. On our return to Chivay, we will visit small villages and the viewpoint of Antahulique to see the stunning terraces built by the ancient culture of Collaguas. Upon our return to Chivay, you will have lunch before traveling to Puno to spend the night.
This morning our guide will meet you in your hotel and drive to the port to board the lancha. Our adventure begins with a smooth ride on the still waters of Lake Titicaca, the highest navigable lake in the world, admiring the beautiful lake and its surroundings en route to the island of Taquile. We will explore the less-touristy side, walking on the pristine sandy beach, visiting families of weavers who will explain their textile art and symbolism that was declared by UNESCO, a world heritage. After, the cultural experience we head to Santa Maria – Llachon located on the tip of the Capachica Peninsula, off the beaten path. The inhabitants will give us a warm welcome, and share their lifestyle, and traditions with us. We will get a glimpse into their magical world. Now it is time to observe the preparation of the Pachamanca, traditional cooking of meats, fish, potatoes, etc. using underground ovens. Enjoy a delicious lunch with a great view of the amazing landscapes. Thereafter, we proceed to our final visit to UROS Ccapi, a less commercialized and touristy island. The Uros people are one of the oldest in South America. Delve into their way of life. Return to Puno and transfer to your hotel.
Optional change to program:
Kayaking on Lake Titicaca
Amantani Homestay (add 1 night)
Today we will take a comfortable scenic ride, Sun Route, through the Altiplano en route to the Inca city of Cusco. We will visit the Pukara Museum which showcases pre-Incan pottery, and La Raya (4325mt.), the highest point, where the cordilleras of central and south Peru come together. Continue to Sicuani for a delicious buffet lunch with spectacular views. Then a visit to the Raqchi archeological site, dedicated to the Inca god Viracocha. Our final visit will be to Andahuaylillas, San Pedro Church, called the Sistine Chapel of South America. Upon arrival in the charming city of Cusco (3350mt), you will be taken to your hotel. Enjoy the rest of the day at your leisure.
Atlernative routes to Cusco:
Fly from the airport in Juliaca to Cusco
Upgrade to the Andean Explorer Luxury Train sleeping on board (departs Puno on Wednesday)
Upgrade to the Titicaca Train (departs Puno on Monday, Thursday and Saturday)
Today after a delicious breakfast, our guide will greet you at your hotel to start a wonderful tour of the city of Cusco, Sacsayhuaman + Qenqo.
The first stop will be at the Qoricancha Sun Temple, a marvelous shrine that was built with religious prophecies during the Inca apogee. Following the tour, we will visit the Plaza de Armas of Cusco (the main square), where our guide will be intensifying the information about the construction and history behind the Cathedral and its beautiful architecture. Then we can visit the well-known San Pedro Market to get a taste of culture and maybe try an enticing fruit juice or eat an exotic fruit. We continue with a short drive up above Cusco taking in the lovely scenery. Visit the impressive Inca complex of Sacsayhuaman with its huge boulders and magnificent presence. As you cross its massive opening it will leave you in awe, your guide will explain that this site was built for the Incas using rocks weighing up to 180 tons which they managed to fit perfectly. The next stop is another mysterious site named Qenqo which means labyrinth. This site is very interesting as it is a rocky construction that hides subterranean passages in its interior. It is also believed this was a ceremonial place where the Incas used to possibly embalm their dead and make sacrifices. After a glorious time, we return to Cusco and have a divine lunch in a fine restaurant. The rest of the day is at your leisure.
Chinchero + Maras + Moray + Cusco City tour
You will depart your hotel in the morning with your guide in private transport to the Sacred Valley of the Incas, enjoying the scenery of the lush valley with the surrounding Andes Mountains. Our first stop will be at the Awanacancha llama farm to see the lovely camelids, llamas, and alpacas. Then continue to the Pisac ruins to admire the Incan site that is surrounded by terraces and stunning views that make for the perfect picture. Afterward, we will visit the Pisac colorful handicraft market where you can pick up, woven fabrics, alpaca wool, jewelry, and other items. Next, take a drive along the Vilcanota River towards Urubamba to have a splendid lunch made from fresh ingredients grown in the Sacred Valley. After lunch, continue to the town of Ollantaytambo, where the impressive Inca fortress stands out because of its beautiful terraces that face town. Immerse yourself in the history regarding this magnificent place strolling through town admiring its Inca design that is still present today. We will leave you at your comfortable hotel to relax and have a divine dinner.
We start off from our hotel in the Sacred Valley with our well-versed guide to the Ollantaytambo train station to board the train to Km104 (2170mt.). Now the adventure starts hiking to the Inca ruins of Chachabamba (2178mt..) an important religious site located in the tropical forest. On our walk, you will appreciate pretty colorful orchids, various species of birds in the lush cloud forest. Then we come upon the spectacular Inca archaeological site of Wiñaywayna (2650mt.) translates to, forever young, thought to have been of religious and ceremonial importance built on a steep hillside overlooking the Urubamba River. A perfect spot near the ruins to have a delicious box lunch with amazing surroundings. After lunch, we continue our hike upward on steep steps for about 1.5 hours until we reach Sun Gate (Inti Punku) (2750mt.) and be rewarded with the first astonishing views of the glorious Machu Picchu. Take some time to snap a few photos of this fabulous site. Following, this incredible vision we will hike down to Machu Picchu (2430mt.) and continue to Aguas Calientes by shuttle bus. Our guide will walk you to your hotel where you will get well rested for tomorrow`s remarkable tour of Machu Picchu.
After a delicious breakfast, take a shuttle bus ride with your guide, for 30 minutes to the mystical site of Machu Picchu (2430mt.). Fix your eyes on the majestic site of Machu Picchu with its grandeur. Stroll with your well-versed guide through the Citadel as he gives magnificent theories behind the genius structure of Machu Picchu. Walk by the many temples and corridors admiring the genius stonework, feeling the positive energy left behind by the Incas. Once you have fully relished in its beauty and taken many perfect photos, we exit the park. Optional: If you are up to it, hike the steep climb to the top of Huayna Picchu for spectacular views. Otherwise, take the bus back to Aguas Calientes with your guide and enjoy a delectable lunch. Following lunch board the train to the Ollantaytambo or Poroy station where our View Peru Representative will escort you in private transport to your hotel in Cusco.
Bid farewell to the beautiful Inca city of Cusco, with a morning transfer, accompanied by our View Peru Representative, to the Cusco airport for your flight to Puerto Maldonado. Upon arrival at the Puerto Maldonado airport, you will be welcomed by our representative and transferred by bus and then by boat riding on the Tambopata River to the lodge. Immerse yourself in the natural beauty of the precious Amazon rainforest in Peru.
The Amazon Rainforest possibly formed about 56 million years ago and spans through eight countries in South America, with Brazil having the largest portion, Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, Guyana, Suriname, and French Guiana. The Amazon is the largest rainforest in the world. There are still many species of wildlife, plants, trees, and more still being discovered throughout the rainforest. Researchers have discovered that the Amazon was home to many advanced civilizations, and believe an ancient city called the Lost City of Z, thrived in the Amazon.
Settle in the beautiful lodge of Refugio, a luxurious oasis located deep in the jungle. Afterward, we will take a 30 minutes hike from the lodge to the 35-meter-high canopy tower, climbing the staircase to the top of the tower, to catch impressive vistas of the immaculate forest of the National Reserve of Tambopata. You will also observe the distinct species of birds such as toucans, macaws, raptors, and more. Return to the lodge and enjoy a delectable Amazonian dinner.
The clay lick is most active at dawn.
Very early in the morning, we set off to see the extraordinary macaw clay lick, where you will spot many macaws and hundreds of parrots gathering on this large river bank. Fifty meters from the cliff, observe green-winged, scarlet, and blue-and-gold macaws and several species of smaller parrots descending in, to ingest the clay. Return to the lodge to have a delightful breakfast. Then it’s time to navigate around Lake Condenado in search of wildlife such as the hoatzin or shansho, alligators, and other species of wildlife. Catch an amazing sight of the macaws flying over the trees. After a fabulous time, we return to our lodge to relax and have an exquisite dinner. In the evening you will have the option to join the group in a night walk through the jungle when most mammals are active but difficult to spot. It will be easier to see different shaped frogs making rare sounds in their natural habitat.
Enjoy a delicious breakfast, before departing on our jungle expedition through the Peruvian Amazon.
Discover the origin of the Brazilian Nuts as we approach the Brazil Nut camp, near our lodge. Check out the huge chestnut trees, where the Brazilian nuts are born, and harvested by the locals, once a year during the rainy season. This has become a lucrative business for the people of Puerto Maldonado. We will have lunch before going on an expedition to discover the medicinal plants in the rainforest. Take a stroll through the Medicinal plant’s trail, in the jungle with our guide, who will identify the variety of plants and trees used by the locals for many years to heal their body, mind, and soul. Some of these medicinal plants are known all over the world such as Sacha-Ajos, Uña De Gato, Sacha – Charcot, Para-Para, Ayahuasca, among others. Following our learning experience, we will return to the lodge to enjoy its amenities and have dinner. After a delightful dinner, you may participate in the nightly lecture given by the researchers of the Wired Amazon Project, about the opportunities and challenges of the project in the Tambopata National Reserve. It depends on every individual on the planet to save the Amazon and its wildlife and secrets we have yet to discover.
After a fabulous breakfast, stroll around the jungle before your departure to the Puerto Maldonado Airport for your flight to Lima.
To experience the Amazon Rainforest in Peru is certainly a precious gift from the heavens!