Machu Picchu

Deluxe Insider Tour of Peru

9 Nights / 10 Days • Private Departure

This Travel Society Exclusive is the best way to experience Peru: when you travel privately, you have way more flexibility - and you'll have the chance to meet and chat with local people in a casual setting, without the hassles of a group.
Jill round
Jill Fost
Sales Manager

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Culinary adventure in Lima
  • Sacred Valley trip, including the ancient Pisac ruins
  • Visit local community farming initiatives and traditional craft workshops
  • A two-hour private tour of the citadel of Machu Picchu before the tourist trains arrive
  • Free time in the charming town of Cusco (and possibly the chance to take in a festival!)
  • Travel to Puno via the stunning Peruvian antiplano: the journey is a highlight
  • Stay in a gorgeous eco-lodge on your visit to Lake Titicaca

INCLUDES:

  • 9 nights four star accommodations
  • Expert, English-speaking Tour Leader – and local guides in some locations
  • Most meals (per itinerary)
  • Transportation via private vehicles (and as described)
  • Excursions and entrance fees as mentioned in itinerary

PRICE:

US$3,600 + US$300

Tour + Domestic flights within Peru
Price is per person, based on double occupancy.
Departs most days (please ask)

ITINERARY:

DAY 1 - Arrival Day

Today is arrival day – we’ll be met at the airport and transferred to our hotel, where our guide will meet us later in the evening.
Overnight: Hotel Country Club

Cuzco, Peru

DAY 2 - Lima

Today is our first full day. After breakfast at the hotel, we can explore as we wish – there are markets, historic squares, grand churches and some excellent people-watching too. Our guide will be happy to suggest something to do.

Lima is fast becoming a foodie destination, with not one but two restaurants in the top 20 of the prestigious “World’s 50 Best Restaurants” list. If you’ve ever had Peruvian food, you’ll understand why! Thankfully, our only scheduled activities today involve food.

First, we’ll learn about the history of the Nikkei, Peruvians of Japanese descent: we’ll visit a Nikkei restaurant, try a cocktail and have a chance to meet their chef who will explain not only about the cuisine but also about the history of the people. We will have a chance to taste the food, but we have to save room for our typical Peruvian dinner, at a traditional Peruvian Criollo or Creole restaurant.
Overnight: Hotel Country Club
Meals: Breakfast, dinner

DAY 3 - Lima / Cusco / Sacred Valley

After breakfast, we’ll head to the airport for our mid-morning flight to Cusco. This delightful, ancient city is nestled high in the Andes. We’ll be met at the airport and taken to the Sacred Valley. This lush landscape is home to many incredible Inca sites, markets, and stunning scenery. Before going to the hotel, we will stop at the famed Seminario Ceramics workshop to learn about the work of a local craftsman: Pablo Seminario – and his partner Marilu Behar. They have been based in the Sacred Valley for decades and developed a style that is now widely replicated by artists throughout the area.
Overnight: Casa Andina Private Collection
Meals: Breakfast, lunch

The Sacred Valley, Peru

DAY 4 - Community Visit / Pisac / Amaru

Today we travel through the Sacred Valley to the community of Amaru, sitting high above the valley floor and offering stunning views of the surrounding mountains. Here the farmers will explain some of the unique and interesting traditional local farming techniques of the area. We’ll also have a simple lunch made with ingredients from their own farms.

This community is a self-organized tourism initiative that proves that proper guidance on behalf of NGOs and a lot of initiative on behalf of a community can lead to a well-functioning tourism project. In the afternoon we’ll visit the famous Pisac ruins and the local market before returning to our hotel for the evening.
Overnight: Casa Andina Private Collection
Meals: Breakfast, lunch

DAY 5 - Sacred Valley / Aguas Calientes

After breakfast we’ll leave the hotel and travel to the nearby town of Ollantaytambo, where we will visit the impressive Inca sites before taking the train to the laid-back, touristy town of Aguas Calientes. Since this is the closest town to Machu Picchu, it’s full of restaurants and shops and there are all sorts of things to do, so you won’t have a chance to be bored.
Overnight: Hatun Inti
Meals: Breakfast, dinner

Alpacas in the Peruvian Andes

DAY 6 - Machu Picchu / Cusco

Today will be the highlight for many people: we have the rare opportunity to visit Machu Picchu before the crowds arrive by train. We’ll have a 2-hour guided tour of this magical, ancient place before we’re free to explore on our own. It’s a massive site and there are many wonderful vantage points for photographs and short hiking trails to explore. We’ll take an afternoon train back to Ollantaytambo and then transfer back to Cusco.
Overnight: Andean Wings
Meals: Breakfast

Cusco, Peru

DAY 7 - Cusco

Steeped in tradition, the Andes of Peru have a seemingly endless number of festivities that are often related to the celebration of saints, virgins and representations of Christ. These festivals are often an incredible spectacle for the outsider, and this is no exception!

The Lord of Huanca is one of those representations whose appearance in the area of Huanca, Cusco an hour outside of the city has led its celebration being one of the largest in the area. There is a chapel of candles where devotees go to be cleansed by the light, in addition to a wall where they etch in wax their petitions. This celebration is also where many drivers bring their cars, from as far away as Arequipa, a 10-hour drive, to be blessed or where they will come after purchasing their vehicles for the original blessing.

Today we will visit the Temple of Huanca on the main day of celebration. We will see the cars dressed in yellow streamers with flowers as well as the devotees, many whom have trekked 5 to 6 hours from the city with a portrait of the Lord of Huanca which will be blessed and brought home to bless their homes for the next year. Flowers will be seen everywhere and the faith will be tangible. After taking in the scene, we will return to Cusco in the afternoon.
Overnight: Andean Wings
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 8 - Cusco / Puno

Our journey from Cusco to Puno, across the scenic Peruvian altiplano, will take the whole day. From the narrow valleys of Cusco, the mountains open up before us as the valley gets wider and wider, eventually turning into a high altitude plain that stretches all the way into Bolivia. Home to many of the country’s alpacas and llamas, it’s an extraordinary trip.

We’ll stop along the way to stretch our legs and visit the church in Andahuaylillas, (known as the Sistine Chapel of the Americas), and at the impressive Inca site of Raqchi, a temple devoted to their creator, Wiracocha. We’ll have lunch near the relatively large community of Sicuani, before we reach La Raya, the highest point of our journey and the natural division between Cusco and Puno. Our last stop in the highlands before reaching the City of Puno will be Pukara, famous for its pre-Inca culture – and for the ceramic bulls that adorn the roofs of many homes!

We’re scheduled to arrive in Puno at dinner time – perfect timing to check into our hotel and freshen up before heading out to explore. Puno is a small town, easy to navigate: there’s one main pedestrian street with shops and restaurants that runs between the Main Square and Parque Pino – there will be plenty of restaurant choices and we can make recommendations if you like.

Puno also boasts a little-known gem: it is home to some of the world’s finest coffee. In 2009, Wilson Sucaticona, the owner of a small, organic coffee farm on the slopes of the Andes heading down into the jungle, surprised the world by winning the award for best organic coffee in the world, putting Peru’s coffee on the map. His beans are sold in some of the shops around town and if you see Café Tunki, we recommend bringing some home with you.
Overnight: Libertador Hotel, Puno
Meals: Breakfast, lunch

lake Titicaca

DAY 9 - Puno / Lake Titicaca

Today we travel by boat on Lake Titicaca to Suasi island. Our home for the night will be the Casa Andina Private Collection Hotel; an original ecolodge located in the only private island in Lake Titicaca in Puno. Casa Andina is the ideal destination for travellers (like us!) who love nature and are looking for some rest and a little pampering.

The hotel has been designed with local materials such as stone, adobe, and tiles. Rooms overlook the beautiful terraced gardens and the lake. This is the perfect setting to learn about the history and living culture of the storied people of Lake Titicaca. We’ll have dinner, and go and look at the stars blanketing the sky. This is the perfect end to our trip.
Overnight: Casa Andina Private Collection, Isla Suasi
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner

DAY 10 - Departure Day

After breakfast, we return to Puno and continue on to the airport in Juliaca for our flight back to Lima. We’ll say good bye to our guide, Mandy, at the Lima airport.

Options:

  • Ask us about affordable airfares and pre- or post-stay options in Lima 
  • This tour is for a minimum of two people, but we can easily arrange for a larger group
  • Why not combine this trip with a visit to Santiago, Chile? Or Buenos Aires, Argentina? Or both?
  • Make the most of your journey! Ask us about including local winery and culinary tours in other parts of South America
Are you interested in this trip or one like it? Get in touch - I'd love to help!

1.877.926.2500
jill@thetravelsociety.com
Jill round
Jill Fost
Sales Manager

Price is per person based on two people sharing a standard room. Other room types: please inquire. Proof of insurance is mandatory; if you need to purchase trip cancellation or health insurance please inquire. For full Booking Conditions, please see thetravelsociety.com/booking-conditions/ Tour is operated by The Travel Society, Inc., 174 Spadina Ave., Suite 404, Toronto, ON, M5T 2C2, Canada; 1 (877) 926 2500; TICO Registration #1280649