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Package details include
Your adventure begins with two days in the capital city of Lima exploring museums, markets and historic sights. Visit the Larco Herrera Museum where you have a chance to study its world-renowned collection of pre-Columbian artifacts. Stand in the impressive Plaza Mayor, see the interior of the 17th-century Cathedral and enjoy a guided stroll through the historic Barranco district. In the Sacred Valley of the Incas, see indigenous wildlife on a visit to the Cochahuasi Animal Sanctuary and browse the Pisac Market, a traditional market where you can purchase handmade goods from local craftspeople. Tour the spectacular Inca fortress of Ollantaytambo which the Inca successfully defended against the Spanish. And witness a traditional Tribute to the Earth ceremony performed by a village shaman.
Then travel by rail to one of ancient wonders of the world, the mountain citadel of awe-inspiring Machu Picchu. One of the world’s most mysterious, magical destinations and the icon of ancient Inca civilization, Machu Picchu is an architectural masterpiece shrouded in clouds atop a lush jungle mountain ridge. Your expert guide will lead you through the enchanting stonework ruins and agricultural terraces, highlighting structures such as the Temple of the Sun and Watchman’s Hut.
You’ll be able to explore this fascinating site over two days since your tour includes an overnight stay at the deluxe Inkaterra El Pueblo Resort, set in a cloud forest at the base of Machu Picchu. Savor the experience of ascending to Machu Picchu the following morning to see the sunrise, a truly unforgettable sight!
Conclude your journey with two days in Cuzco, the ancient capital of the Inca. Tour Cuzco's iconic landmarks then travel to the Colonial-era town of Oropesa, renowned for its generations-old breadmaking traditions. Conclude your exploration of this Andean nation with an exclusive visit to the remote mountain village of Cuyuni, where you'll get the opportunity to meet with the local people and learn about their culture and way of life.
• 9 nights in deluxe hotels: 3 nights in Lima, 2 nights in the Sacred Valley, 1 night at Machu Picchu and 3 nights in Cuzco
• 16 meals - Daily breakfast, 4 lunches and 3 dinners
• On-tour transportation and 2 internal flights; includes oxygen-equipped vehicles in Cuzco to ensure comfort at high altitude
• Services of a professional trip leader
• Comprehensive escorted sightseeing with all entry fees
• Hotel to hotel baggage handling
Day 1 - Welcome to Lima
AAA Complimentary Inclusion: Enjoy a complimentary extra night in Lima before your tour at the Doubletree El Pardo Hotel, including breakfast the following day.
Accommodation: Doubletree El Pardo Hotel – 3 nights
Day 2 - Lima at Leisure
Enjoy a day to relax or explore this historic city on your own.
Day 3 - Discover Lima
Today a city tour includes the lovely Santo Domingo Church & Convent and the Larco Herrera Museum, famed for its world-renowned collection of Pre-Columbian artifacts. Stand in the impressive Plaza Mayor, see the interior of the 17th-century Cathedral and visit the Convent of St. Francis. Enjoy a guided stroll through Barranco, a charming district where historic 19th-century homes have been restored to house the studios and galleries of local artists, musicians and designers. The remainder of the day is at leisure.
Day 4 - The Sacred Valley of the Inca
Fly to Cuzco where you’ll be greeted by the trip leader. Engaging Experience: Journey with the trip leader into the Sacred Valley. Visit the Cochahuasi Animal Sanctuary, dedicated to the rescue of endangered Andean animals. At Awanacancha, see llamas and alpacas in their natural habitat and learn about ancient weaving techniques still in use today throughout the valley’s timeless villages.
Explore the colorful market in Pisac where mountain villagers come from afar to sell their goods. It’s an excellent place to shop for sweaters, rugs, hand-carved musical instruments and ceramics. After lunch return to the hotel.
Accommodation: Casa Andina Private Collection Hotel – 2 nights
Day 5 - Explore the Sacred Valley
Engaging Experience: Today visit the spectacular and impressive fortress of Ollantaytambo. With its impenetrable stone walls and strategic hilltop location, the ancient Inca were able to successfully defend this site against the Spanish. Also explore the ancient village which lies in the shadow of the mighty Ollantaytambo fortress. Walk along narrow streets of perfectly-cut stone that were laid down centuries ago by the Inca and stop in a local pub to learn about chichi, an Andean beverage that has been brewed from corn since ancient times.
Engaging Experience: Visit the studio of Pablo and Marilu Seminario – renowned pottery artisans who draw on ancient techniques and designs. Tonight witness a Pago a la Tierra, or Tribute to the Earth, performed by an Andean shaman.
Day 6 - Through the Sacred Valley by Rail to Machu Picchu
A two-day visit to the Lost City of the Inca begins with a rail journey through the spectacular Sacred Valley. Travel through the Urubamba River Valley past rugged Andean peaks, remote Indian villages and carefully-tended terraced fields. Arrive in the charming town of Aguas Calientes, nestled below Machu Picchu, and then ascend by bus to this ancient citadel to explore its extensive ruins as the trip leader illuminates the history of the ancient Inca.
Engaging Experience: Later, retreat to the enchanting Inkaterra El Pueblo Hotel, nestled in a riverside cloud forest at the base of Machu Picchu for an overnight stay.
Accommodation: Inkaterra El Pueblo Hotel – 1 night
Day 7 – Morning at Machu Picchu and Return to Cuzco
Engaging Experience: Transportation and entry ticket to explore the Lost City again early in the morning at your own pace is included. Stand in awe as the sun casts its first light upon the ancient stones of Machu Picchu; it’s a powerful and unforgettable experience. Later, en route to Cuzco, stop in Chincheros, a high-mountain town known for its skilled weavers.
Accommodation: El Mercado Hotel – 3 nights
Day 8 – Exploring Cuzco, the Inca Empire’s Ancient Capital
Join the trip leader this morning to discover Cuzco’s iconic landmarks, including the Temple of the Sun and the Cathedral, built on the site of an Inca Palace and now splendidly restored as one of Peru’s finest Colonial-era landmarks. Then mingle with city residents at the lively San Pedro Market and visit Almudena Cemetery to experience traditional facets of daily life here in the Andes. Return to the hotel for an afternoon at leisure.
Day 9 - Off the Beaten Path to Oropesa and Cuyuni
Engaging Experience: Journey across the high-mountain plains south of Cuzco to Oropesa. Rarely visited by tourists, this handsome Colonial-era town is renowned throughout the region for its generations-old bread-making traditions. Then continue to the remote mountain village of Cuyuni where you’ll have a chance to mingle and stroll with residents as they take you into their homes and fields to explain their traditions and way of life. Return to Cuzco and enjoy a farewell dinner.
Day 10 - From Cuzco Back to the Capital
Fly to Lima for your return journey home. Guests with late international departures will have a day-use room at the Doubletree El Pardo Hotel.