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Andes and Amazon

10 Days FROM USD 2,609

Overview

This itinerary really packs a punch – three must-see destinations in one. And so many contrasts! One moment you are enjoying a pisco sour in Cusco’s Colonial central square, the next you are hiking over Andean passes and through cloud forest to Machu Picchu on one of the world’s classic treks; the Inca Trail. Then, you are in the steamy atmosphere of the Amazon jungle enjoying the richest biodiversity on the planet. Almost too much for the senses to take in! 

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Trip Code: PETSAAM

Travel Style: Tailor-Made journey

Location: Cusco, Machu Picchu, Puerto Maldonado

Flights: Internal flights included in itinerary. Ask us to help book your flights to/from South America.

WHY YOU'LL LOVE THIS ITINERARY

  • In just 10-days you will experience two of South America's greatest wonders, the Amazon and Machu Picchu. 

  • Lose yourself in the mysteries and immense biodiversity of the Amazon 

  • This itinerary offers the perfect combination of Ancient Inca heritage and culture with the immense and indescribable wildlife experiences of the Amazon. 

  • This itinerary can easily be combined with other Machu Pichhu based tours, experiencing lesser known paths that deeply intertwine the incredible sights of the Inca trail with unique and unforgettable cultural experiences. 

ITINERARY INSPIRATION

On arrival, please make your way through to the Arrivals Hall where our representative will be waiting for you to transfer you to your hotel.
He/she will be holding a sign with your name on it. Please note this service is with a driver only.

Arrival transfer in Cusco

Cusco, set at an altitude of 3,400 metres in the Peruvian Andes, was once the capital of the Inca Empire. It is known for its Spanish colonial architecture and Incan remains. Narrow, cobble-stoned streets lined by Inca walls stretch out from the main plaza in every direction. Many of the colonial buildings were built on top of Incan foundations and the stonework is unparalleled in its precision and beauty.

Cusco

This morning you will be collected from your hotel to explore the wonders of Cusco, the ancient Inca capital city on foot. With your private guide, explore the city’s fascinating history, from the Inca times to colonial rule to the present day. Winding through narrow cobble-stoned streets and markets, this half day tour will show you the baroque Cathedral, which took 96 years to complete commencing in 1550. The Cathedral includes many priceless colonial religious paintings including the Black Christ. Cusco is famed for its mix of Colonial and Inca architecture, and you will also sample impressive Inca constructions at the Korikancha ruins - the Inca temple of the Sun. With the entire city a UNESCO World Heritage Site, this tour will be one of the highlights of your adventures in Peru.

Cusco Walking City Tour

This evening the trek operator will hold a pre-trek briefing at your hotel. Time will be reconfirmed with you directly on arrival. Please note your sleeping bag which is included will be provided to you at this briefing.

Pre-Trek Briefing

Depart your hotel very early and travel along the Sacred Valley by bus to Piskacucho at 2,700m above sea level. Embark on the unforgettable trek beginning as you cross the bridge over the Rio Urubamba. From here the trek takes you along the left shore of the river and after roughly three hours, you reach the first Inca site – Patallaqta. After another half-hour walking along the Rio Kusichaca valley, arrive in Taravoc and stop for some well-earned lunch.

The afternoon is spent walking through a wonderful variety of flora and fauna with splendid views en route including Rio Vilcanota, the Urubamba mountain range and the snow-capped peak of Mt Veronica. In the mid-afternoon you reach Wayllabamba at 3,000m (9,840 ft), where the camp will be set up and you will enjoy a hearty-but-healthy dinner before your first night under canvas.

Inca trail to Wayllabamba

A demanding day of ascents and descents awaits, around 9km over seven to eight hours. In the morning, you will slowly make your way up to Warmihuañusca (4,200m / 11,111ft) otherwise known as the ‘Dead Woman’s Pass’. You will see alpacas and llamas feeding on pastures of Ichu, a type of Andean grass. This is not only the highest point of the Inca Trail, but also the half way point on your trek to Machu Picchu! Continue downhill through an area of Cloud Forest, home to many birds including sparrows and hummingbirds. You may also be lucky enough to see the rare Spectacled Bear.

Your camp for the night will be in Pacaymayu valley at 3,600m (11,810 ft). There will be time to relax before an early dinner and a much needed sleep.

Inca Trail to Pacaymayu valley

The third day is the longest day of the trek, but not the most strenuous. Begin the day with an hour’s walk up original Inca steps to the archaeological site of Runkurakay at 3,800m (12,470ft). Pass a number of small lagoons to Runkurakay Pass before the trail snakes down to Yanacocha (the Black Lagoon) and continues to the archaeological site of Sayacmarca. Stop at Chaquicocha camp for lunch. Continue along the paved Inca path, through a preserved Inca tunnel to reach the Phuyupatamarca Pass and its ruins.
From here, there are often incredible views of the snow-capped Mount Salkantay, the most beautiful mountain in the region. There is then a steep decent to Wiñayhuayna, an Inca site built into the hills with fountain structures and curved terracing, overlooking the Urubamba River. Your final night of the trail will be spent here.

Inca Trail to Wiñayhuayna Inca site

The most anticipated day of the trek begins early with a trek to Into Punku (The Sun Gate), where you will catch the first glimpse of the breath-taking Machu Picchu Ruins. On arrival at the ruins, there will be a two and a half hour guided tour giving you an insight into the history behind the principal remains and monuments before some time to explore the ruins at leisure. You may choose to scale the Huayna Picchu Mountain, which gives you spectacular views of Machu Picchu from a different perspective. (Please note that access to Huayna Picchu Mountain requires an extra, limited-availability permit - please enquire at time of booking if you require one.) Or you may choose to visit the hot springs (wonderful for aching legs!) down in the village of Aguas Calientes. The train back to Cusco will depart from Aguas Calientes in the late afternoon.

Arrival to Machu Picchu

Welcome in Puerto Maldonado. Check-in and then reach the boarding wharf in only 15 minutes. Begin to experience the enchantment of the rainforest, as you take the 45-minute boat ride along the Madre de Dios River, to arrive at Inkaterra Reserva Amazonica lodge. After a short briefing, settle into your beautiful cabaña and enjoy your lunch in the dining room. Take a nap, followed by a refreshing tea time and get ready for the afternoon excursion. After gathering with your Inkaterra Explorer Guide, choose from the various excursions available at Inkaterra Reserva Amazónica. On your first day, we recommend a guided walk along the Trail system, into the Inkaterra Reserva Amazonica natural area, where you will discover the Amazon Basin. This trail offers an excellent introduction to the jungle environment, winding past impressive trees such as the staggeringly tall kapok, and the strangely beautiful strangler fig, offering excellent opportunities for birdwatching and observing exotic insects.

We also recommend on the first night our Twilight River excursion — a guided afternoon boat ride on the Madre de Dios river. Witness the transformation from a diurnal to a nocturnal world: animals and birds of the daytime give way to species specially adapted to the night. As you enjoy their paradise, you will learn about their habits, while you search for nightjars, owls, capybaras and up to three different caiman species.

Enjoy dinner served in the main dining room from 7:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. After dinner, you may retire early to your own cabaña, or share your experience in the rainforest with other guests and interpreters, as you listen to the intriguing sounds of the jungle at night.

Reserva Amazonica Day One

You will be collected from your hotel at the appropriate time and transferred to the airport for your onward flight.

Transfer to the airport for onward destination

Wake up late or rise early — the choice is yours. Breakfast begins at 5:30 a.m., for those who want to avoid the heat, and enjoy nature at its fullest. A full buffet breakfast is served from 5:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. This morning you may visit the Lake Sandoval excursion into the Tambopata National Reserve. Glide in a wooden canoe, across a beautiful, mirror-like oxbow lake that is home to the endangered giant river otter, as well as red howler monkeys, red-bellied macaws, anacondas, side-neck turtles and black caimans. Return to the Inkaterra Reserva Amazonica for lunch.

After lunch, consider the remarkable Inkaterra Canopy Walkway. Ascending the first tower, 29 meters above the forest ground, you begin your encounter with the treetop realm. For more than a quarter of a mile, you will literally walk through the rainforest canopy on a suspension bridge network linking eight observation platforms. During this hour-and-a-half expedition, be on the lookout for colorful toucans, woodpeckers, trogons, monkeys, and sloths. If you wish you may extend your excursion and appreciate the sunset from one of the towers. The excursion finishes by returning to the lodge. Once at the lodge, enjoy the daily nature presentation in the Eco Center.

Dinner starts at 7:30 p.m.

Reserva Amazonica Day Two

Enjoy a trip to Gamitana Creek, located 25 minutes by boat from the Inkaterra lodge. For one and a half hours, explore the rainforest along the banks of a winding, dark-water creek that is home to many piranha, caiman, turtles and birds, until the Sanipanga landing point. Navigate your way back downstream, observing the abundant flora and Fauna along the way. You will return to Gamitana Farm to do a short guided tour to see how local farmers grow fruits and vegetables. Return to the lodge for lunch.

After lunch, walk along the lodge trails to the Inkaterra Reserva Amazonica Rainforest Garden just around the cabanas. This interesting native garden was started by the locals more than ten years ago showcasing native plants, trees and orchids. An in-depth explanation familiarizes you with the traditional use and highly interesting benefits of the plants and trees used for construction including those that were used for building the lodge, as well as native clothing accessories. Then consider the Rainforest by Night excursion through the Inkaterra Ecological Reserve at night for an approximately 2-hour excursion. Biological activity differs greatly between night and day in the Amazonian ecosystem. Venture into the forest and experience the mystery of the animal activity that awakens in the rainforest after dark, enhancing animal resources to create new adaptation mechanisms. Listen to nocturnal forest sounds and spot species that only emerge at night.

Return to the lodge.

Amazon activites

After buffet breakfast, take a ride back to Puerto Maldonado by outboard motorised canoe to catch your departure flight.

Reserva Amazonica Day Four

This is a suggested itinerary. All Tailor-Made journeys can be customised to suit. Add in additional highlights, spend more time in areas of particular interest to you, or extend your journey to visit other regions of Latin America or Antarctica.

DOWNLOAD ITINERARY PDF

ITINERARY ADD-ONS

  • Why not add on a tour to the Galapagos to your South American journey, spending 4 days exploring the beautiful archipelago that abounds with fascinating wildlife? Amidst spectacular volcanic scenery you will see a myriad of birds and animals from lava lizards to blue-footed boobies, Galapagos penguins, frigatebirds and giant tortoises. Find out more

  • Combine your journey with a tour to the mystical Easter Island, one of the most isolated places on the planet. Bear witness to one of the most ancient and logic-defying mysteries as you gaze upon the giant stone Moai, the watchful guardians of the island. Or perhaps experience the islands savage beauty, enjoying scenic hikes or relaxing on white sandy beaches. Find out more here Find out more.

  • Alternatively, your experience in the Sacred Valley could follow and experience the evolving role of the original Andean people as you move from unique lodge to lodge, experiencing daily hikes with panoramic views of waterfalls, snow peaks and turquoise lakes and discovering breathtaking sites of ancient Inca civilisation. Find out more.

WHY TAILOR-MADE?

  • Personalise your itinerary
  • Access to great flight deals
  • Choose your accomodation
  • Tailored travel insurance options
  • Choose your preferred dates
  • Cater to your travel needs

Pricing & date

Travel Style Departing Duration PRICE FROM
Standard Daily 10 USD 2,609
Superior Daily 10 USD 2,815
Deluxe Daily 10 USD 2,925
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Important Information

  • Private airport transfers 
    Internal flights 
    3 nights hotel accommodation in Cusco with breakfast  
    3 night Inca Trail Trek with all meals 
    3 night Amazon lodge with all meals
    Tours as detailed in itinerary
    Sleeping bag hire for Inca Trail 
    Entrances and permits 

    EXCLUSIONS  
    International Airfares  
    Visa and reciprocity fees (if applicable)
    Travel Insurance
    Beverages 
    Personal expenses 
    Gratuities for porters, guides and drivers

  • 5 (High altitude and good fitness required in many areas)
  • Available upon request. Contact us for more details.

  • Porters can be hired to carry personal items at an extra charge.

     

  • Season and availability

Accommodation

We believe that appropriate accommodation should add to the authentic travel experience, as well as providing utmost enjoyment. For that reason our accommodation is scrutinised by our staff on the ground frequently, ensuring the properties adhere to our high standards. This key will help you understand the levels of accommodation available on this tour.

SPEAK TO A SPECIALIST

Your Destination Specialists will turn your South America adventure dream into a reality. With exceptional knowledge and first-hand experience, our Destinations Specialists will assist in every way possible to make your journey the most memorable it can be, matching not only the itinerary, but the accommodation and activities to suit your style of travel and budget.

Sustainability

Being environmentally accountable is a crucial part of our organisation. Chimu is currently striving towards using less paper, taking several initiatives to do so and tracking our progress along the way. Our goal: A paperless organisation. For this reason, all information given to you will be sent electronically. We encourage those who choose to travel with us to support our aspirations and actions and ask that you reconsider printing out documentation. To view these documents, you can download them to your iPad or portable computer before and during your trip.

Chimu is passionate and dedicated to sustainability measures and understands the crucial part sustainability plays within the tourism industry.

We use local guides and office staff to both maximise local employment opportunities and minimise carbon footprint. Local guides also ensure you benefit from the intimate knowledge, passion and culture of the country you’re visiting. Our guides are all highly qualified (most with university degrees) or equip with many years of experience and are paid above the standard wage. Whether it be our knowledgeable local guides, locally produced meals or the transport on tour, we do not use imported goods when local products are available. We aim to minimise our impact on the environment and give as much back as possible to the communities we work in.

While visiting the many national parks, heritage sites, museums and landmarks our travellers are encouraged to explore remain culturally aware and sensitive. We further encourage you to buy appropriate souvenirs and discourage the buying of anything wrongfully made or taken from the environment i.e. shells and endangered species products. Information on how you can be environmentally conscious, and travel responsibly will be made available in our Travellers Guides and provided during your travels by guides and staff.

For more information on our sustainability policies, including how we are striving towards being a paperless organisation, click HERE