Unique Experience Peregrine | Peru Highlights

Starting in the fast-moving capital city of Lima, move onto make your mind up about the mysterious Nazca Lines and then walk the volcanic lands of Arequipa. Weave through the Andes mountains to the archaeological wonders of the Sacred Valley and Machu Picchu, before floating across the waters of Lake Titicaca in Puno. Complete your Peruvian experience, as you delve into the jungles of the Amazon. These truly are the highlights of Peru.

  • Highlights

    • Experience the untouched world of the Amazon Rainforest. Stroll along jungle trails on the lookout for monkeys, parrots, otters and caimans, and sleep in a nature lodge lit by candles and kerosene lamps.
    • Marvel at ancient Inca architecture throughout the fertile Sacred Valley before discovering the mother of all Inca cities, magical Machu Picchu. Visit the iconic site not once, but twice, for a comprehensive experience.
    • Peru is a world-class culinary destination. Explore an area unknown to tourists to try a variety of street food and authentic Peruvian desserts.
    • The floating reed islands of Uros on Lake Titicaca are a marvel of concept, construction and history. Take a boat tour on the world's highest navigable lake and stay on a private island.
    • Visit an archaeological site near Cusco with a specialist historian guide who will provide interesting insight into the region and share knowledge about Peru's history and culture.
  • What's Included

    Meals

    20 Breakfasts, 6 Lunches, 6 Dinners

    Transport

    Private vehicle , Train , Motorised Canoe

    Accommodation

    Hotel (16 nights), Jungle Lodge Feature Stay (2 nights), Eco Lodge Feature (2 nights)

    Included Activities

    • Arequipa - Cathedral Visit
    • Arequipa - San Ignacio Chapel Visit
    • Arequipa - Santa Catalina Monastery
    • Arequipa - Walking tour
    • Ballestas Island - Excursion
    • Colca Canyon - Condor view point
    • Colca Canyon - Guided visit
    • Complimentary airport arrival transfer
    • Cusco - Cathedral Entrance Fee
    • Cusco - Coricancha Temple entrance fee
    • Cusco - Full Boleto Turistico Pass (access to 16 archaeological sites, transport & guides not included)
    • Cusco - Orientation Walk
    • Cusco - Walking Tour: Main Square, San Blas Square, Coricancha Temple, San Pedro Market & 12 Angle Stone.
    • Cuzco - Guided visit of Sacsayhuaman
    • Guided visit of Machu Picchu
    • Lake Titicaca - Floating Uros islands & Taquile island visit
    • Lima - Alameda de Chabuca Granda - Street food tasting
    • Lima - Guided tour, including San Francisco Monastery, the Catacombs and Central Market
    • Lima - Leader led orientation walk of Miraflores
    • Nazca Lines - Viewing tower
    • Sacred Valley - Community visit & lunch
    • Second visit of Machu Picchu (unguided)
    • Sillustani archaeological site (time permitting)
    • Suasi Island - Cultural Museum Visit
    • Suasi Island - Spectacular Sunset over Lake Titicaca, Picnic & Drinks
  • Pricing

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      • Start Date:21 Dec 19
      • End Date:10 Jan 20
      • Price:$7,488
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      • Book now and receive a discount. Was $8,810. Now only $7,488 for this departure

      • Start Date:29 Feb 20
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      • Price:$8,295
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      • End Date:2 Oct 20
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    Please note: while prices are accurate at time of loading they are subject to change due to currency fluctuations and currency surcharges may apply. Please check price at time of booking
  • Itinerary

    Day - 1

    Location: Lima - Welcome to Peru! On arrival into Lima's Jorge Chavez International Airport you will be transferred to your hotel. Meet your leader and fellow travellers for a pre-trip briefing, usually held at 2 pm. Please check the noticeboard near the hotel reception for confirmation of the location of the meeting. After the meeting your leader will take you on a brief orientation tour of the Miraflores area – your in-depth city tour will take place tomorrow morning. Lima has some of the best cuisine in South America and is especially renowned for its seafood. Perhaps sample Peru's national dish of ceviche, which is raw fish marinated in lime juice and often served with hot peppers. Note: As this trip takes you to locations at high altitude, it's possible that some travellers may experience adverse health effects due to altitude sickness. Please see the 'Is this trip right for you?' and 'Health' sections of the trip notes for important information about this.

     

    Day - 2

    Location: Paracas - This morning at approximately 8 am your leader will take you on a walking tour of downtown Lima, including the city's historical centre. Flanked by streets of ornate mansions, palaces and churches, Plaza Mayor is the best place to start any exploration of Lima. Take a walk through the old streets to get a feel for colonial life. On one side of the plaza is the Cathedral of Lima, which houses the remains of Lima's founder, Francisco Pizarro. You have an included visit to the nearby San Francisco Monastery, with its catacombs containing some 70,000 human remains. Continue on to the Central Market where you'll take a walking tour. The market has a huge variety of fresh produce on offer, including fruits, vegetables and even guinea pigs. You'll also have the opportunity to try some local Peruvian fruits and street food. Next, head away from the tourist trail and visit Alameda de Chabuca Granda, an area really only known to locals. It's a place where people go as a treat to enjoy a variety of local street food and authentic Peruvian desserts such as ‘mazamorra morada’, a sweet porridge made from purple corn, or ‘picarones’, Peruvian donuts made from local squash called macre and sweet potatoes served with a sweet syrup – both are a must to try while in Peru! Later in the afternoon, travel by minivan for approximately 4 hours to Paracas, arriving in the late afternoon/early evening.

     

    Day - 3

    Location: Nazca - This morning, rise early for an excursion to the Ballestas Islands. We will depart the hotel at approximately 7.30 am. Make your way to Paracas' port to board a boat at approximately 8 am. The Ballestas Islands are home to an abundance of wildlife, including pelicans, red-footed boobies, flamingos, sea lions and even penguins. You'll have the opportunity to see wildlife up close on a boat tour of the islands (approximately 1.5-2 hours). Between June and September the port may be closed due to weather conditions. If this is the case, an alternative land tour of the Paracas National Reserve will be arranged. After your island trip, journey in a private van from Paracas to Nazca. This is a three hour drive, but there may be a visit to Huacanchina on the way, if your group chooses. Huacachina is a little settlement that sits beside a small lake surrounded by dramatic sand dunes, with plenty of photo opportunities. Later in the afternoon, on arrival in Nazca, visit the viewing platform to see the famous Nazca Lines. Etched into the landscape some 22 kilometres north of Nazca, these mysterious wonders are an assortment of perfectly straight lines, trapezoidal zones, strange symbols and images of birds and beasts on a giant scale. To get a higher perspective on the Nazca Lines, you can choose to go on an aerial tour of the area this afternoon. The plane ride is 30 minutes long and covers the 26 figures scattered throughout the desert. The flight can be bumpy and is only recommended for those with a strong stomach. There have been safety issues with these flights in the past, so we have done our best to research the best operators in the area to recommend to you. Our tour leaders are prohibited from recommending or booking through any other operators.

     

    Day - 4

    Location: Arequipa - Early this morning, make the 10-12 hour journey (depending on traffic and stops) to Arequipa by private van. The trip may be long, but it's well worth the effort. There will be toilet stops and a lunch stop along the way. Arequipa is a beautiful Spanish colonial city. Known as La Ciudad Blanca (The White City), the buildings have been built almost exclusively from a white volcanic material called sillar. The city lies in a valley at the foot of the El Misti volcano, a perfectly shaped cone.

     

    Day - 5

    Location: Arequipa - This morning starts at approximately 9 am. Enjoy a walking tour of Arequipa with a local guide. Explore the main square, the Santa Catalina Monastery, the San Ignacio Chapel with its colonial mural paintings and the suburb of Yanahuara. The tour will finish at approximately 1 pm. You may like to spend the rest of the day relaxing in a cafe in the plaza. Another option is a visit to the museum that houses 'Mummy Juanita' – the well-preserved body of a young Inca girl who died sometime between 1450 and 1480.

     

    Day - 6

    Location: Arequipa - Take a free day to further explore the laidback city of Arequipa. Pick up an Alpaca jumper and meet the llamas and alpacas of Mundo Alpaca, stroll to the pretty, peaceful neighbourhood of Yanahuara or take part in any optional active adventures in the surrounding hills and rivers.

     

    Day - 7

    Location: Colca Canyon - This morning will begin at approximately 8 or 9 am (as agreed by the group the night before) Drive through the Altiplano ('high plains') to the Colca Valley and Canyon. This drive takes approximately 5-6 hours including toilet stops. On the way you'll see grazing vicunas, llamas and alpacas, as well as stone cairns built by the local indigenous people. More than twice as deep as the Grand Canyon, the Colca Canyon provides some breathtaking views. The pre-Inca terraces carved into its walls are still cultivated today, and traditional Indian villages are dotted around, where it's possible to see locals in colourful traditional dress. Stop at the highest point (4910 metres) to enjoy views of the bleak landscape below and the snow-capped volcano of the Nevado Ampato in the distance. At this point you might feel a little shortness of breath, but after taking some photos you'll quickly get back in the vehicle and descend to a lower altitude. Continue on to the town of Chivay, where you'll have some time to visit the local hot springs. In the evening, you may wish to visit a local 'pena' to enjoy a Peruvian dance and music show. Spend the night in Chivay.

     

    Day - 8

    Location: Puno - Early this morning at approximately 6 am you'll visit the Cruz del Condor viewpoint, where Andean condors, one of the world's largest flying birds, can often been seen soaring in the air. This journey is approximately 5 hours return. After lunch it's about a 6-hour (including stops) drive in the van to Puno. On the way the group will stop at the Sillustani archaeological site. The ruined 'chullpas', or funeral towers, of Sillustani were built by a pre-Inca civilisation centuries ago to house the remains of noble men. Located on the shores of Lake Titicaca, Puno is a melting pot of Aymara and Quechuan Indian culture. The town is known as the folklore capital of Peru and is famous for its traditional dances.

     

    Day - 9

    Location: Lake Titicaca/Suasi Island - Be enchanted by the striking scenery and unique cultures on a cruise around Lake Titicaca today. As Lake Titicaca is the highest navigable lake in the world, the sun can be extremely strong, so make sure you wear a hat and sunscreen, even on cloudy days. This morning at about 8am you will depart from the port in Puno for the floating Uros Islands. The boat journey will take about 30 minutes before reaching the Islands. The Uros people constructed these islands to isolate themselves from rival tribes in ancient times. They are built completely from multiple layers of totora reeds, which grow in the shallows of the lake. Next call into Taquile Island for some woollen handicrafts. On the island, knitting is strictly a male domain, while women do the spinning. You will spend approximately 1-1.5 hours here. Later the afternoon you will travel a further 1-1.5 hours to the private island of Suasi where you'll spend the next two nights.Be enchanted by the striking scenery and unique cultures on a cruise around Lake Titicaca today. As Lake Titicaca is the highest navigable lake in the world, the sun can be extremely strong, so make sure you wear a hat and sunscreen, even on cloudy days. This morning at about 8 am you will depart from the port in Puno for the floating Uros Islands. The boat journey will take about 30 minutes. The Uros people constructed these islands to isolate themselves from rival tribes in ancient times. They are built completely from multiple layers of totora reeds, which grow in the shallows of the lake. Next, call into Taquile Island for some woollen handicrafts. OnTaquile, knitting is strictly a male domain, while women do the spinning. You will spend approximately 1-1.5 hours here. Later in the afternoon you will travel a further 1-1.5 hours to the private island of Suasi where you'll spend the next two nights.

     

    Day - 10

    Location: Suasi Island - This morning you will visit the cultural museum on the island which houses maps, pictures of the lake and books about the history of the lake and its communities. There are handicrafts and fabrics from the different groups that developed around the lake, types of Andean grains like quinoa, and a chance to learn about the process of painting wool. An easy late-afternoon walk (approximately 1-2 hours) will take you to the highest point of the island – the perfect place to witness an unforgettable sunset over the waters of Lake Titicaca. Enjoy a private picnic with drinks; a unique moment to soak in the beautiful landscape, appreciate the serenity and – if the clouds behave – watch the sun go down.

     

    Day - 11

    Location: Puno - Around midday today you will travel back across the lake to Puno. On the way you will be provided with a packed box lunch. Enjoy a free night in Puno to explore, eat dinner at a local restaurant or relax in the hotel. Puno is famous for its festivals. If you're lucky, your visit might coincide with an evening parade, when the streets fill with costumed dancers and musicians.

     

    Day - 12

    Location: Cusco - This morning we continue to Cusco by private van. This will be a long ride with opportunities to stop for breaks, but you may want to stock up on snacks for the journey. Cusco is South America's oldest continuously inhabited city, and was the home of the Inca for two centuries before the Spanish built their first capital here. Today Cusco is a fascinating combination of both cultures. At 3450 metres (11,150 feet) above sea level, it’s important to take time to acclimatise to the city’s altitude. After settling in at the hotel, embark on a casual walking tour around the hotel and Plaza de Armas with your tour leader. This tour will also include a visit to the Cusco Cathedral with specialist guide Professor Alfredo Hinojoza Galvez. Alfredo was born and raised in the city of Cusco. He studied at the National College of Sciences of Cusco and later studied Administration and Tourism then a Masters in Colonial Art at National University San Antonio Abad del Cusco (NUSAAC). Alfredo has served as Dean of the College of Tourism and has published eight books, including a guidebook for the Touristic Tour of the East Valley. He is considered an icon among colonial art and tourism students for his impressive career spanning 30 years. Alfredo will be uniquely placed to offer special insight into Cusco Cathedral, which is also a World Heritage site.

     

    Day - 13

    Location: Cusco - This morning your leader will take you on walking tour of Cusco. Visit the Coricancha Temple for a tour with a local guide. The temple was once covered in sheets of gold that were eventually removed to raise a ransom for the life of Atahualpa, and later the Spanish demolished the temple to build a Dominican church on its foundations. Soon after, head to the San Pedro market, where you can practice your bargaining skills and take some colourful pictures. The tour will finish at Cafe Manos Unidos for an included snack. This cafe is one of Cusco's first vocational training sites for young adults with special needs. The cafe's core purpose to improve the quality of life for people with developmental and intellectual disabilities though vocational training and education in the hospitality industry. The food is all natural and is prepared and served by the students on site, a great way for travellers to interact with locals and, in doing so, give a young adult who would normally be isolated from society the opportunity to hone their skills and meet people from all over the world. This afternoon you'll have some free time to further explore Cusco.

     

    Day - 14

    Location: Sacred Valley - This morning at around 9 am you'll board a private bus for the Sacred Valley. Just outside of Cusco, visit the fortress ruins of Sacsayhuaman. The massive stone blocks forming the settlement's walls give you an idea of the ingenuity and military strength of the Inca. After this included visit you will continue on to the Sacred Valley. Treasured for its climate, fertile land and the Urubamba (Sacred) River, the valley has long been the main source of food in the high Andes. Afterwards we stop for lunch at the Chichubamba community in Urubamba to take part in an ancient cooking ritual known as pachamanca. This cooking method, which dates back to the time of the Inca empire, sees meats marinaded in spices then placed in a huatia (earth oven) with a selection of root vegetables and cooked slowly over hot stones. You will also visit a couple of local workshops and a chicheria (corn beer) bar. If it happens to be a market day, you can wander the stalls in search of hand-painted beads and ponchos. Afterwards, continue on to the town of Ollantaytambo. Built over an ancient Inca settlement, this is one of the few places where the Inca defeated the Spanish. The ruins of the upper terraces offer great photo opportunities of the town below.

     

    Day - 15

    Location: Aguas Calientes - Your destination today is Aguas Calientas, nestled in the cloud forest at the foot of Machu Picchu. Early this morning at approximately 7.45 am you will travel by train for around 90 minutes through the meandering Urubamba Valley to reach the town. From here take a 30-minute bus up the winding road to Machu Picchu, where you will be joined by a guide who will take you through the ruins and tell you stories of its history and the ancestral people of the region. Looking at Machu Picchu for the first time, as it sits against a backdrop of forested mountains, is a truly breathtaking experience. No matter how many photos you've seen, it is hard to prepare for its surreal beauty. The true purpose behind Machu Picchu may always be a mystery, since no historical records of the complex exist. In fact, none were made in the first place, since the Incas had no written language. Some historians have argued it was a place of spiritual worship, others a military stronghold, and some even think it was a prison. Most archaeologists, however, believe it to be the 15th-century headquarters of ‘he who shook the earth’, Emperor Pachacuti. You will have a guided visit (approximately 1.5-2 hours), then free time to wander around. Later, you'll take the bus back down to Aguas Calientes to spend the night before heading back up to Machu Picchu first thing in the morning for your second visit.

     

    Day - 16

    Location: Machu Picchu/Cusco - At around 5.30 am this morning, take the bus back up the winding road to Machu Picchu. On your second visit to the ruins you'll have time to take any photos you may have missed yesterday. Explore more of the extraordinary architecture of the many temples, palaces and living quarters, where the mortar-free design is particularly earthquake resistant and the stones are so precisely cut that to this day not even a knife fits between them. In the afternoon, return by bus and train to Cusco, where you'll spend the night. In the evening, perhaps head out for dinner in the city.

     

    Day - 17

    Location: Cusco - Bid farewell to any fellow travellers leaving the trip today. Enjoy a free day to relax, shop or explore more of Cusco's sights. Perhaps head to a cafe on the Plaza de Armas, or for those seeking an active adventure, try mountain biking in the hills surrounding Cusco. In the evening, you might like to unwind with a meal and drink in a local restaurant. You could even sample the Peruvian delicacy of cuy (guinea pig), if you are yet to try it and are brave enough.

     

    Day - 18

    Location: Puerto Maldonado (Jungle lodge) - This morning you'll take an included flight to Puerto Maldonado in the Amazon Jungle, where you'll be staying for two nights at the Posada Amazonas Lodge. The flight duration is approximately 40 minutes. While in the Amazon you will have the services a local expert guide from for the duration of your stay. A representative from the lodge will welcome you at the airport. You'll then make a quick trip to the lodge's office in town by van. Upon arrival at the Jungle lodge office you will be provided with a small duffle bag to pack your personal items required for the duration of your jungle stay. The remainder of your items will be stored securely in the office. From the office, you'll travel by private vehcile to the port, this drive is approximately 45 minutes. Board a motorised canoe and travel down on the Tambopata River to the Amazon lodge. As we use multiple lodges area this journey can take between 45 minutes and 2.5 hours. Once you arrive there is time to unpack and unwind before a short orientation and briefing. After dinner your local jungle guide will take you out into the jungle on a night walk.

     

    Day - 19

    Location: Puerto Maldonado (Jungle lodge) - This morning starts nice and early. At about 430am you will visit the Oxbow Lake. The activity begins with a walk through the jungle. It will take you approximately 30-40 minutes to reach the Lake. Once at the Lake you’ll board a catamaran to take a slow ride around. Keep your eyes peeled for Squirrel Monkey troops that sometimes forage in bushes at the edge of the lake. Overhead, spectacular Scarlet and Red and Green Macaws and parrots are a regularly seen as they fly over the Lake. After the boat ride you’ll take the same path back to the lodge, arriving late morning at approximately 11am depending on the groups pace. Soon after you’ll head back out on a 20 minute walk through the rainforest to a clay lick frequented by 7 to 10 species of parrots and parakeets. While watching from a blind, you’ll be able to get very close to view the Dusky-headed and Cobalt-winged Parakeets, Chestnut-fronted Macaws with Mealy, Yellow-crowned, Blue-headed, and Orange-cheeked Parrots. After this you’ll walk back to the lodge for lunch. There will some free time until mid-afternoon when you’ll head out for the final activity of the day. A twenty minute boat ride downriver from the lodge brings you to Centro Ñape, a traditional community clinic that produces medicines from rainforest plants and administers them to patients who either cannot afford to receive treatment in town or prefer traditional medicines An Eseeja nativa from the Community of Infierno will take you on a unique tour of Centro Ñape to explain the uses of various medicinal plants. Head back to the lodge around 6pm and enjoy some free time before dinner. After dinner head out on an optional night jungle walk.

     

    Day - 20

    Location: Puerto Maldonado / Lima - This morning at approximately 7am you will take the boat transfer back to the Port, transfer to the lodge office to collect your belongings then head to the airport for your flight back to Lima. After checking into the hotel, you'll have some free time in the afternoon to explore or relax. You could even head to the huge shopping complex of Larcomar, which is set over the ocean. In the evening, perhaps head out for one final group dinner to reminisce on your adventures.

     

    Day - 21

    Location: Lima - Today your Peruvian adventure comes to an end after breakfast. Flights out of Lima can be booked for anytime, as there are no planned activities.

     

    Peru Highlights
*Terms and Conditions
Offer subject to availability at time of booking. Prices are per person share twin based on best available tour price, inclusive of all discounts unless otherwise stated. Prices are subject to currency fluctuations and are based on cash or cheque. Tour deposit, amendment and cancellation conditions may apply. Travel agent service fees may apply. Special conditions apply - please ask for full details at time of enquiry.
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