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Peru in Depth

18 Days FROM USD 4,609

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Overview

Choose this Tailor-Made itinerary or customise to create your own unique journey. Departs daily to suit your travel plans. Price based on Standard accommodation. Superior or Deluxe also available.

This in-depth Peruvian experience begins in the capital city of Lima where you can explore the city before taking the bus to Paracas, a port town which provides access to Ballestas Islands. After spending a day in Nazca, head to the White City of Arequipa. On your trip to Colca Canyon, appreciate the Andean landscape. Visit Puno and the islands of Lake Titicaca then travel to Cusco to visit the surrounding Incan ruins. Finally, end your trip in Hacienda Concepcion where you can immerse yourself in the jungle life of the Amazon.

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Trip Code: PETSPID

Travel Style: Tailor-Made Journey 

Location: Lima, Paracas, Nazca, Arequipa, Colca, Puno, 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 eighteen days you will discover the highlights of Peru, starting in the capital, Lima and finishing in Puerto Maldonado, gateway to the Amazon.

  • This itinerary includes many amazing sights and cities but is paced so that there is enough time to explore.

  • You will discover the main sights of Lima - the ‘City of Kings’ and Cusco, the ancient capital of the Incas.

  • You will gain an insight into the fascinating and colourful culture of Peru as you travel to the Colca Canyon, to Puno, through the beautiful Sacred Valley and take an overnight trip on Lake Titicaca.

  • You will delve into the history of the Incas as you explore Cusco, the beautiful Sacred Valley, Ollantaytambo and the Inca citadel of Machu Picchu.

  • You will visit the beautiful White City of Arequipa and see the mysterious Nazca Lines.

  • The itinerary also includes incredible natural wonders such as the Colca Canyon where the mighty Andean condor is found, Lake Titicaca, the Ballestas Islands and finally the Amazon Rainforest.

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. This service includes a driver and local English speaking guide, who will provide you with any useful information needed for your stay. He/she will be holding a sign with your name on it.

Should you not be able to locate them, please refer to the front of your itinerary for emergency contact details of our representative office.

Arrival transfer in Lima

Lima, the capital of Peru, sits on the country's arid Pacific coast. Founded in 1535, its colonial centre is well preserved, but today Lima is a bustling metropolis and one of South America’s largest cities. The city is home to the various museums including the Museo Larco that houses a collection of pre-Columbian art and the Museo de la Nación, tracing the history of Peru’s ancient civilizations. Lima is known as the “gastronomical capital of the Americas”, encompassing specialties from ceviche and traditional coastal cooking to refined global fare. It even boasts several of the top restaurants in the world.

Lima

Today you will be collected from your hotel for your tour of Lima, the Colonial ‘City of Kings’. On the city tour you will visit a number of well-known sites including the Cathedral, the Presidential Palace, Santo Domingo Convent and the Plaza de Armas.This is a chance to appreciate Lima's magnificent Colonial architecture as well as vignettes of its pre-Colombian past. On completion of this tour, you will be taken to your hotel. Please note this is a small group tour.

Lima - City Tour

You will be collected from your hotel to transfer to the bus station for your onward journey from Lima.

Transfer to bus station for onward destination

Travel by bus from Lima to Paracas in a comfortable bus offering a great designer interior with ample leg-room for you to relax or read a book in comfort, large panoramic windows through which to view the landscape and with an on-board toilet and full air-conditioning. The bus drive takes approximately 4 hours.

Bus Lima - Paracas

On arrival at Paracas bus station, you will be met by a representative who will be holding a sign with your name on it, to transfer you to your hotel. Should you have trouble locating him/her, please refer to the front of your itinerary for emergency contact details.

Arrival transfer in Paracas

Paracas meaning ''sand rain'' in Quechua, is a small port town and beach resort on the southern coast of Peru, a few hours south of Lima. The cliffs that fringe the beaches teem with birds, ranging from guano birds to Humboldt penguins. Paracas is the access point for tours to Islas Ballestas and to Paracas National Reserve, where there are huge colonies of seabirds as well as sea lions.

Paracas

This morning, you will be collected from your hotel transferred to the small port of Paracas
to board the boat that will cruise around the Ballestas Islands. See the remarkable marine mammals and birdlife the islands are famous for. From the boat, you can see the incredible ancient etchings in the coastal cliffs including the mysterious three-pronged Candelabra of the Andes. This 180 metre tall geoglyph is carved into the side of the hill alongside Paracas Bay. On completion of the cruise, you will be transferred back to your hotel. Please note this is a small group tour.

Ballestas Island Cruise

Private transfer from Paracas to hotel in Nazca.

Private Transfer Paracas - Nazca

Nazca is located in the Ica region of Peru, on the southern coast, one of the most arid regions in the world. The name is derived from the Nazca culture that flourished in the area between 100 and 800 AD and was responsible for the Nazca Lines, the ceremonial city of Cahuachi and for constructing an impressive system of underground aqueducts (Puquios) that still function to this day.

If you have some free time in Nazca, you may like to consider an optional flight over the Nazca Lines or a trip to the Chauchilla Cemetery.

Nazca

Travel by comfortable bus with bus bed-seats, hostess service and dinner on board to arrive into Arequipa at midnight. The bus journey takes approximately 10 hours.

Bus: Nazca - Arequipa

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. Should you not be able to locate them, please refer to the front of your itinerary for emergency contact details of our representative office. Please note this service is with a driver only.

Arrival transfer in Arequipa

Arequipa lies on the edge of the Altiplano, 2380m above sea level and framed by the volcanoes Misti, Pikchu Pikchu and Chachani. It is known as “La Ciudad Blanca” (White City), as many of its buildings are made of sillar, a white volcanic stone. The historic centre of Arequipa is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and its historic heritage, natural scenery and cultural sites, make the city a popular destination.

Arequipa

Today is free for you to explore and discover the city of Arequipa at your leisure.

Wander around the Plaza de Armas, the main square of Arequipa and see the cathedral with El Misti (5825m) rising behind it.

Explore the Santa Catalina Monastery, built in 1579 in the Mudéjar style, enlarged in the 17th century and characterised by vividly painted walls. The monastery covers an area of 20,000 sq. metres. It served as a cloister for Dominican nuns from the 16th to the 18th century and still houses around 20 nuns in the northern corner of the complex.

Visit the “Mummy Juanita” in the Museo Santuarios Andinos. Also known as the Inca Ice Maiden, Juanita is the well-preserved frozen body of an Inca girl who was killed and sacrificed to the Inca gods in the 15th century. She was discovered in 1995 on Mount Ampato in the Andes Cordillera in southern Peru.

Arequipa Free Day

Early this morning you will be picked up from your hotel to commence your road journey to the Colca Canyon. Enroute there will be several stops to appreciate flora, fauna and high Andean Landscapes, one of them is Pampa Canahuas, located at 3,800 metres above sea level, inside the National Reserve Salinas y Aguada Blanca, a place where we can see vicunas in their natural habitat and the Misti and Chachani Volcanoes. During the next part of the journey, you will visit the community of Patahuasi (4,000 metres above sea level), the Toccra Zone (4,300 metres above sea level) homes to llamas, alpacas, migratory birds and offering incredible views of the landscape and Patapampa (4,900 metres above seal) , the highest point and offering majestic views of the cordillera and most of the volcanoes in the Arequipa region. Begin to descend to Chivay town located in the Colca Valley. Free time for lunch (not included) before transferring to your hotel for your overnight stay.

There is an optional visit to the 40ºC thermal-medicinal baths in La Calera. (Entrance fee to the pools is not included and is US$ 7.00 per person approximately – subject to change.)

Note: The optional visit to La Calera Hot Springs is for clients staying in Chivay town only.

Arequipa to Colca Canyon

Following breakfast, we travel to the ‘Cruz del Condor’, a spot considered to be the best viewpoint to watch the majestic Andean condors ascending from the valley.

The Colca Canyon is a canyon of the Colca River and one of the deepest canyons in the world. It is home to the Andean condors that can be seen at close range as they fly past the canyon walls, rising on the thermals. At the 'Cruz del Condor' viewpoint, the canyon floor is 3,960 feet (1,200 m) below the rim of the canyon.

After this amazing spectacle, we continue our journey back to the town of Chivay, taking in the beautiful Andean scenery and fascinating pre-Inca, Inca and Colonial history of the area. The road passes through several small villages founded in Spanish colonial times and still inhabited by people of the Collagua and the Cabana cultures. The local people maintain their traditional way of life and continue to cultivate the pre-Inca stepped terraces. Many of the women wear traditional dress with colourful embroidered blouses and flower-patterned hats.

In the afternoon, travel by bus to Puno, situated on the shores of the famous Lake Titicaca. You will board a touristic bus that includes a hostess
who speaks limited english, snacks and beverages. The duration of this bus journey is approximately six hours.

Colca Canyon to Puno

On arrival at Puno bus or train station, you will be met by a representative who will be holding a sign with your name on it, to transfer you to your hotel. Should you have trouble locating him/her, please refer to the front of your itinerary for emergency contact details.

Arrival transfer in Puno

Puno lies on the shores of Lake Titicaca, the highest navigable lake in the world. It is the largest city in the Southern Altiplano and an important agricultural and livestock (llamas and alpaca) region. It sits at an altitude of over 3,800 metres and is a picturesque hillside city and a melting pot of the Aymara and Quechua culture.

Puno

Early this morning, you will be collected from your hotel and transferred to the port to board your boat. Visit the floating islands of Uros, where the locals continue to practice their traditional way of life. Located 4 kms from Puno, the original inhabitants of these floating islands are said to descend from one of the most ancient peoples of the Americas. The Uros Islands, as well as the houses on them and the boats used by their inhabitants, are all made from the Totura reeds that grow in Lake Titicaca. Continue to Amantani Island, where you will have the chance to enjoy traditional local hospitality while taking in some incredible landscapes. The island is also home to some captivating archaeological sites including the temples of Pachatata and Pachamama.

This evening spend the night with a local family and in the evening experience first-hand the traditions and customs of this fascinating island. Lunch and dinner included.

Puno – Amantani

After breakfast and bidding a fond farewell to your host family, we travel to the island of Taquile, a place where time appears to have stood still. Around 350 Quechua-speaking families live here, operating a collective agricultural system dating from the 14th Century and renowned for their textiles - beautifully woven chumpis (belts), chullos (caps) and ojotas (sandals). Taquile’s charm is further enhanced by the stunning landscape and outstanding views of the snow-capped Cordillera Real mountain range. From Taquile, we board the boat once more to return to Puno where you will be transferred to your hotel.

Please note for your overnight stay, lodging is very basic with limited facilities and it is recommended to only bring an overnight bag and a torch.

Amantani – Puno

This morning, you will be collected from your hotel and transferred to either the bus or train station for your journey from Puno to Cusco.

Transfer from Puno hotel to bus or train station

The spectacular journey from Puno to Cusco takes you across the Altiplano and you will travel accompanied by an English-speaking guide. The drive takes you through sleepy Andean villages and past spectacular snowcapped mountains, sheer cliffs and rampaging rivers. Stops along the way include the atmospheric towns of Pucara and Andahuaylillas and the pre-Inca ruin of Raqchi. Lunch is included and you will arrive in the famous city of Cusco in the early evening. The approximate journey will take ten hours.

Puno to Cusco

On arrival at Cusco bus or train station, you will be met by a representative who will be holding a sign with your name on it, to transfer you to your hotel.

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

You will be collected from your hotel for a sightseeing tour through Cusco, the heart of the Inca Empire. Visit the fascinating Qorikancha Temple of the Sun, the 12-Angled Rock and the Cathedral, built on the ruins of an Inca Palace. From here head to the archaeological remains located around the city, including the fortress of Sacsayhuaman, Qenqo (giant rock), the ancient site of Puca Pucara and finally the Water Temple of Tambomachay. On completion of your tour, you will be taken to your hotel. Included in your tour price is the BTG (Tourist Ticket of Cusco). Please note this is a small group tour.

Cusco - City Tour

This morning you will be collected from your hotel for full day of exploring the Sacred Valley of the Incas. This fertile river valley was home to many important sites for the Incas, both strategic and religious. The first stop is the village of Pisac, with its famous market. The colonial village of Pisac sits at the base of the spectacular Pisac Ruins – a hilltop Inca citadel and fortress with impressive agricultural terracing. On market days Pisac comes alive with locals from nearby hillside villages in traditional dress selling local fruit and vegetables as well as handicrafts. There is free time to wander the colourful market stalls before a typical Andean lunch at a local restaurant.

Continue your journey along the River Urubamba, to Ollantaytambo. The town, which is dominated by a giant Inca fortress, is perhaps the best surviving example of Inca town planning and was the scene of a rare Inca victory over the invading Spanish. At the end of the tour you will be transferred to the train station in Ollantaytambo to take the train to Aguas Calientes. Lunch is included.

Sacred Valley Tour

Travel from Ollantaytambo to Machu Picchu in this comfortable train, and let your feet have rest. Enjoy an authentic Andean experience, while relaxing in modern and comfortable interior design illuminated by Latin American music. Comfortable seats with tables in front to share the journey with friends and partake of a refreshing beverage. On-board services includes a fun and refreshing selection of drinks prepared using Andean herbs and fruits, all of which boast revitalising properties to fill you with energy and keep you ready for the next adventure waiting ahead of you.

*Due to limited space for luggage storage on trains, luggage restrictions apply: one bag or backpack (carry-on luggage) with a maximum weight of 5.0 kg/11 lb, measuring no more than 62 linear inches/157 linear cm (height + length + width)

Ollantaytambo to Aguas Calientes

Machu Picchu is a 15th century Inca site, located 2,430 metres above sea level on a mountain ridge above the Sacred Valley. It is the most famous of all Inca sites, but it was not until 1911 that it was brought to the world’s attention by the American historian Hiram Bingham. The Incas abandoned the city just prior to Spanish colonisation, the city was never pillaged and as a result the ruins are still in fantastic condition. With its location on a dramatic ridgeline surrounded by sheer cliffs and the Urubamba River on three sides, the city of Machu Picchu is a remarkable place to visit. Machu Picchu was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1983 and in 2007 it was voted one of the new Seven Wonders of the World.

The tour starts with a bus ride from Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu. You will be astonished at your first view of Machu Picchu, a stunning display of ancient architecture with incredible surroundings. Enjoy a guided shared tour of the ruins and monuments such as the Main Square, the Circular Tower, the Sacred Solar Clock, the Royal Quarters, the Temple of the Three Windows and the Cemeteries. Return by bus to Aguas Calientes village.

Please be aware that your tour of Machu Picchu does not include an entry permit to Huayna Picchu (the iconic hill behind the Machu Picchu ruins). If you want to climb Huayna Picchu then you need to pre-book your permit with at least 3 months in advance. Please contact your travel specialist if you would like to do this.

Machu Picchu Guided Tour

This afternoon travel by train from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo.

*Due to limited space for luggage storage on trains, luggage restrictions apply: one bag or backpack (carry-on luggage) with a maximum weight of 5.0 kg/11 lb, measuring no more than 62 linear inches/157 linear cm (height + length + width)

360 Machu Picchu Train: Mapi - Ollanta PM

Transfer from Ollantaytambo train station in the Sacred Valley to Cusco.

Private Transfer Ollantaytambo - Cusco

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

On arrival at Puerto Maldonado Airport, you will be met by a representative of Refugio Amazonas to begin the journey to Refugio. Enroute we will stop at the local office so that you can repack your luggage and only take what is required for the next four days. The rest will be stored securely in the office. Continue by road and a two and a half hour boat journey to Refugio Amazonas, located in a 200-hectare private reserve. The boat ride from the Tambopata River Port to Refugio Amazonas takes us past the Infierno Community and the Tambopata National Reserve checkpoint and into the buffer zone of this 1.3 million hectare conservation unit. A boxed lunch is provided to eat along the way.

On arrival to the lodge, you will be welcomed and given a brief orientation. After dinner at the lodge there is the option to join a night walk when most of the animals are active but sometimes difficult to see. The frogs are easier to see with their fascinating shapes and colours and fascinating sounds.

Note: Please ensure your arrival flight is no later than 13:05

Puerto Maldonado - Refugio Amazonas

Refugio Amazonas have a set of activities where you can choose from onsite, allowing you to create your own personalised experience deep in the Amazon. Below are suggested options you may like to choose from through-out your stay.

After breakfast venture out onto the lake by canoe or catamaran, looking for wildlife such as hoatzin, caiman, horned screamers, macaws and otters that are sometimes seen in the area. Back on land, a 30 minute walk from the lodge takes you to the 25 metre scaffolding canopy tower, complete with staircase running through the middle and providing safe access to the platforms above. The tower has been built on high ground to give views of the primary rainforest extending out towards the Tambopata National Reserve. Enjoy excellent views across the canopy and look for toucans, macaws and raptors.
After lunch you will visit a farm to learn about local agriculture and Amazonian crops before an ethnobotanical tour to learn about the medicinal uses of the various plants and trees of the region. In the evening, Refugio Amazonas staff offer lectures covering topics such as conservation threats, opportunities and projects in the Tambopata National Reserve.

Refugio Amazonas

Refugio Amazonas have a set of activities where you can choose from onsite, allowing you to create your own personalised experience deep in the Amazon. Below are suggested options you may like to choose from through-out your stay.

Witness the audio and visual spectacle of a clay lick, watching vibrant coloured macaws, parrots and parakeets feast on clay. Species such as dusky-headed and cobalt-winged parakeets are often seen and with luck we may also see mealy and yellow-crowned Amazons, blue-headed pionus, severe macaw and orange-cheeked (Barraband`s) parrots.
After lunch, take a short hike from the lodge brings us to a beautiful Brazil nut forest that has been harvested for decades. Here you can learn about the whole process of the rainforest’s only sustainably harvested product, from collection through transportation to drying.
In the afternoon, there will be a visit to a peccary clay lick, this time to see mammals. Wild rain forest pigs show up in herds of up to twenty to eat clay, alongside deer, guan and parakeets.

Refugio Amazonas

After breakfast, return to Puerto Maldonado for your departure flight. Depending on airline schedules, this may require a dawn departure.

Please note: Depending on airline schedules, this may require a dawn departure. We recommend flight LA2074 departing at 13:35

*Schedule of activities are subject to change without notice

Refugio Amazonas – Puerto Maldonado

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.

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ITINERARY ADD-ONS

  • Why not add on a tour to the Galapagos at the end of 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

  • 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.

     

  • Perhaps you can experience the Amazon on a luxury river cruise. Discover the incredible biodiversity of the flooded rainforest, spot the pink river dolphins of the Pacaya Samiria National Reserve, or simply enjoy the most exquisite Peruvian cuisine options on a luxury vessel. 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
Superior Daily 18 USD 4,609
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Important Information

  • Private Airport Transfers
    Internal flights as part of itinerary 
    Accommodation with breakfast daily
    Sightseeing with local English-speaking guide
    Other meals where stated 
    All meals in Amazon Lodge

    Exclusions 

    International flight
    Visa and reciprocity fees (if applicable) 
    Travel Insurance
    Beverages
    Personal expenses
    Gratuities for tour guides/drivers
    Any items not mentioned as included

  • 3 Light Adventure (High altitude in some areas)
  • Available on request. Contact us for more details.

  • All entrance fees are subject to change without prior notice.

    This is a Tailor-Made itinerary which can be customised to create your own unique journey. Contact us to discuss your travel plans.

  • 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

Talk to one of our Destination Specialists to plan your South American adventure and turn your dream into a reality. With exceptional knowledge and first hand experience, our consultants 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.

On this trip you will stay at the eco-friendly lodge Refugio Amazonas, a proud partner of Wired Amazon, a citizen science program. They ensure that travellers have as little impact on the wildlife as possible and minimize disturbance and also encourage the education and visitation of protection and conservation services, specifically associate with the Amazon. 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