Great Inca Expedition
16 Days / 15 Nights - Per person on a double basis - Code PVP020
DAY 1: LIMA
Arrival in Lima, meet and greet at the airport, transfer to your hotel. Stay in Lima.
DAY 2: LIMA
In the morning a tour through Lima’s streets and plazas. Starting at the Love Park in Miraflores, with a spectacular view of the Pacific Ocean, and then heading to the Huaca Pucllana, ceremonial center of the Lima culture. After this, we go on to the Main Square where the Government Palace and the Town Hall are located. We will visit the Cathedral and explore the Santo Domingo Convent, along which corridors San Martin de Porras and San Rosa de Lima used to walk around in 17th century, and where their remains rest today. In the afternoon, we will visit the spectacular Larco Museum, which is considered one of the main attractions of Lima. Then, we will take a break to enjoy a drink made of Pisco, our flagship liquor, in a traditional tavern in Pueblo Libre to later head to the Park of the Reserve to enter the Magic Water Tour, the newest entertainment icon in the city, comprised of 13 water fountains that provide a mixture of color, illusion and fantasy. Overnight in Lima.
DAY 3: LIMA/PARACAS
Departure to Paracas Bay in the exclusive “Paracas Premium Service”. We will go the airport of Pisco to fly over the Nazca lines, huge drawing that can only be seen from the sky and which represent several insects and animals like a monkey, hummingbird, condor or a spider. The origins are unknown, while many think it is a big astronomic calendar. Return to airport and transfer to your hotel. Free rest of the day to enjoy the hotel facilities and surrounding areas. Overnight stay at Paracas.
DAY 4: PARACAS/LIMA
Early in the morning we will embark on a boat tour to the Ballesta Islands. The “Chandelier” a giant figure marked in the sand in the style of the Nazca lines can also be seen on our way to the islands. On the islands you will be able to observe sea lions, pelicans, Humboldt penguins and other sea birds. In the afternoon, departure to Lima in the exclusive “Paracas Premium Service”.
DAY 5: LIMA/AREQUIPA
Transfer to the airport to catch the departing flight to Arequipa. On arrival, meet and greet at the airport, transfer to your hotel. Free morning to get used to the altitude. This afternoon the White City opens its doors on a journey that begins in the beautiful Colonial district of San Lazaro, the founding place of Arequipa; from here we will walk through its picturesque streets adorned with geraniums to later go to the Carmen Alto viewpoint for a chance to see the wonderful landscape of agricultural terraces and the three volcanoes surrounding the city: Misti, Chachani and Pichu-Pichu. It is time to head for the Yanahuara Colonial district, famous for its Andalusian style church and its viewpoint, architecture jewel surrounded by sillar (volcanic stone) arches. Then we will visit the Santa Catalina Monastery, impressive religious monument which was closed for about 400 years; with narrow streets, squares and gardens reminiscent of the old quarters of Seville or Granada. We will proceed to the Main Square to see its beautiful Cathedral and the stone arches that surround it, and finally, it is time to visit the Church of the Society of Jesus, founded in the seventeenth century by the Jesuits, famous for its cloisters and its magnificent San Ignacio Dome. Stay in Arequipa.
DAY 6: AREQUIPA/COLCA
We set off to the spectacular Colca Valley going up the foothills of Chachani volcano and admiring the Misti and Picchu Picchu Volcanoes. Then we cross the vicuñas reservation of Pampa Cañahuas where we can see them running free in the high Andean lands. Peculiar villages around us. We will stop for lunch on our way to the hotel. Free afternoon to rest and enjoy the hotel and the optional visit to the thermal baths in the area. Dinner and overnight stay at Colca Valley.
DAY 7: COLCA/PUNO
Early in the morning we will go to the Condor Cross viewpoint. Before us the shocking flight of the condors, huge Andean birds on the brink of extinction and symbol of the Andes Mountain Range. The view at this place allows us to appreciate the canyons depth, considered as one of the deepest in the world. We will then visit the Maca and Yanque towns which still keep the colonial churches. After lunch, we will set off for Puno on bus. The trip takes about 5 hours and we will be welcomed and transferred to the hotel upon our arrival. Overnight stay at Puno.
DAY 8: TITICACA LAKE
A full day tour to explore Lake Titicaca. First we will visit the Uros, the friendly inhabitants of these handmade islands made of totora reeds. Then it’s off to Taquile Island, a place in which the settlers still maintain their ancestral traditions and colorful typical clothes. A great opportunity to explore the island and get the best view of the lake. A typical lunch is provided in the island. Return to the city in the afternoon.
DAY 9: PUNO/CUSCO
Departure on a tour bus to Cusco. On the way we’ll stop to visit the attractions this beautiful route has to offer. Our first stop: the in site Pucara Museum and a chance to get one of the local classic bull shaped ceramics. Then it’s lunch time and the opportunity to see the view at La Raya, natural border between Puno and Cusco. We will continue our trip to Racchi, Temple of the Wiracocha god where the walls and narrow streets stand out. Before our final destination, we will stop at Andahuaylillas for a visit to its beautiful chapel. We will arrive in Cusco at the end of the afternoon. Stay at Cusco.
DAY 10: CUSCO
In the morning we will distance from the crowds and visit Sacsayhuaman, a huge and impressive fortress of colossal constructions and surrounded by beautiful views blending together perfectly. Our adventure continues at the Inca Shrine Qenqo, to see the sacrificial altar embedded inside a rock cave. Finally we will arrive to the Puca Pucara viewpoint and Tambomachay, monument of impressive architectonic knowledge considered as one of the pillars of Andean Cosmo vision. Free afternoon to explore the city.
In the afternoon our exclusive city tour starts with a visit to the San Cristobal Plaza to enjoy its panoramic view of the city. Then, we will visit the San Pedro Market to soak in its local flavors and to learn about more of the products grown in the area which supply the whole city. After this, the Korikancha temple will welcome us in all his magnificence; this temple, whose Quechua name means “Gold Enclosure” still bedazzles us with the thought of its gold covered walls. Then it is the turn to visit the Santo Domingo Church. We will walk from San Blas, the artisans’ neighborhood, to the Hatun Rumiyoc street, stopping at the Inca Roca Palace, nowadays home to the Archbishop’s Palace and also at the famous Twelve Angle Stone. We will continue our walk to the Main Square to visit the Cathedral and its valuable and beautiful colonial masterpieces.
DAY 11: SACRED VALLEY
The Sacred Valley of the Incas is waiting for you. On the way we will stop at Awanacancha, small complex to admire Andean camelids such as alpacas and llamas and learn from local inhabitants about traditional dyeing and knitting techniques. Later we will explore the Pisac Market with enough free time to go around and buy handcrafts and if you feel like tasting something traditional, stop by the wood ovens for a delicious empanada or a piece of bread. Lunch at a local restaurant.
In the afternoon, our tour continues to Ollantaytambo, a small town full of local color and inhabited since Inca times in which we will visit the main temple used as a fortress during the Inca resistance. Breathtaking views for amazing pictures. Stay at the Sacred Valley.
DAY 12: SACRED VALLEY
We will travel to remote places of the Sacred Valley. First stop: Chinchero, where we’ll take a walk around its beautiful town and archaeological complex. We will also have the opportunity to see a short exhibit of traditional textiles, a distinctive feature of this town dedicated to following ancestral dyeing techniques to create high quality works of art. Our trip continues in Moray, a place with a breathtaking view thanks to its colossal concentric terraces resembling a coliseum. What did they use it for? The terraces recreated 20 different types of microclimates, and they were studied to ensure the agricultural production of the empire. Lunch at a local restaurant. We will continue our journey to Maras, the millenary colonial salt mines. The contrast of the white pools against the green valley is so impressive that it resembles a postcard.
DAY 13: SACRED VALLEY /MACHU PICCHU
A train trip away to see one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. We arrive at the Aguas Calientes station where our staff will assist us on boarding the bus to go up the winding road to Machu Picchu, amid a spectacular view of the Urubamba River and its canyon. The Lost City of the Incas, Machu Picchu, will astonish us with its terraces, ceremonial shrines, steps and urban areas. Energy is all around us. After a guided visit, we will have lunch at one of the restaurants in the area. Overnight stay at one of the hotels in Aguas Calientes or Machu Picchu.
DAY 14: MACHU PICCHU/CUSCO
Morning off. Entrance tickets to Machu Picchu are limited. We suggest applying for the entrance tickets for later dates at the moment you book the whole tour program so as to avoid any complications due to congestions or lack of local availability. In an additional visit to Machu Picchu we will be able to see the areas of the Intipunku or Door of the Sun, the Inca Trail entrance to the citadel. For those looking for a more intense adventure and wish to visit Huayna Picchu, it is important to have in mind that there are only 400 daily spots to climb the mountain, all of which have to be reserved in advance. At the arranged time, we will return to Cusco and will be transferred to the hotel. Overnight stay in Cusco.
DAY 15: CUSCO/LIMA
Transfer to the airport and flight to Lima. Arrival, assistance and transfer to the hotel. Free rest of the day to discover the city. Stay in Lima.
DAY 16: LIMA
End of our services.