Sample 12 Day Tour
Tailored to your group's interests, budget, time and available dates.
A travel itinerary can be designed to include educational interests (pre-Columbian pottery, textiles, cultural history, early Spanish Colonial arts, weaving, ancient and contemporary horticulture, Andean cuisine, pre-Columbian and Colonial architecture and archaeology) with Peruvian specialists providing educational experiences in your area of interest.
Activities such as trekking, horseback riding, rafting, spiritual experiences, homestays, preservation or social projects can be added to your itinerary.
You can also tailor your trip with various extensions, unique intercultural events and hands-on cultural encounters. We specialize in customized quality experiences for groups such as couples, close friends or family members, university students, clubs or business groups, etc.
Sample Tour Itinerary
Duration 12 days/11 nights Trip Objective Easy Cultural, Archaeological and Historical Tour.
An activity oriented, non-camping program which includes optional day hikes and walking tours of 1-3 hours duration at elevations up to 12,335 feet in the highlands and over cloud-forest trails
Day 1 Fly to Lima We depart our gateway city in the morning on a nonstop flight to Miami where we catch our evening connection to Peru's capital city, Lima. We are met at Jorge Chávez Airport by the local escort who helps us with our luggage and escorts us to our hotel located on the coast.
Day 2 Ruins/Hacienda Lunch-Lima/National Museum After a leisurely get acquainted breakfast with your group and expedition leader we drive south to visit an extensive archaeological site, which contains an important Inca temple that predated the Incas by about 1000 years and was a major ceremonial center. We explore the pyramids and the "House of the Chosen Women" for about three hours including a lunch at a hacienda style restaurant. We return to Lima in the afternoon and tour the National Museum (about 3 hours) which houses a superb collection of archaeological and historical artifacts from the Moche "Lord of Sipán" site in northern Peru and a scale model of the Machu Picchu complex. We then return to the hotel where our expedition leader will recommend a fine dining experience in one of the excellent restaurants in Lima. (B, L)
Day 3 Lima—Cuzco fly/Cusco City Tour/Dinner & Folk Dancing & Music Show We arise early in the morning for a one-hour flight to Cuckoo. Ancient Cuzco is at the elevation of 10,909 feet and was known to the Incas as "the belly button of the world," the source of life. The red-tiled roofs of the city can be seen from our plane as it descends over the mountain valley to land. We proceed to the hotel near the main plaza. The remainder of the morning is at your leisure to begin acclimating to the high elevation. A trip briefing will be given followed by a tour of the city (about 3 hours). We explore the magnificent Sun Temple, whose interior walls were once covered in gold and studded with emeralds and turquoise. In the patio stood a life-sized golden garden made of solid silver and gold. We see the 17th century Baroque Cathedral, built on the site of the palace of Viracocha, largely from the materials pillaged from the Incan sites. The entrance to the cathedral is through the first Christian church in Cuzco, El Triunfo, built in the 16th century. We also visit the Cloister of the Monastery of San Francisco, and the charming artisan's quarter and stop at the 12-angled stone on Hatunrumiyoc Street. Later, we return to our hotel and have a welcome dinner and folk music show at one of the city's best restaurants. (B,D)
Day 4 Cuzco Area Ruins/Picnic Lunch/Andean Market/Ruins Following breakfast we tour the Inca sites surrounding Cuzco. In the surrounding hills is Sacsayhuman, a spectacular fortress/temple complex built by the Incas with views of the valley. The double zigzag wall is said to symbolize a puma's teeth, and the stones used to erect this massive fortification weigh up to 125 tons each. Kenko, a small site whose name in Quechua means "zig-zag" consists of a large carved boulder with tunnels dug below it. Tambo Machay has ceremonial baths' clear, cool springs that continue to flow 500 years after it was built. We then drive across the highlands to the Sacred Valley of the Incas on a road with spectacular vistas. We enjoy a typical Andean lunch and market in an Andean town (9,745 feet) before driving up to the Inca ruins fabulously perched on a ridge overlooking the town and the surrounding countryside. Our expedition takes us to the main sections of the ruins of an Inca site including the Intihuatana, or "Hitching Post of the Sun" in its religious center. There are commanding views of the agricultural terraces that were built to follow the contours of the hillsides, and views of the Urubamba river below. We will return to Cuzco and the hotel where dinner will be recommended in one of the superb restaurants in the city. (CB,L)
Day 5 Cuzco Museums, Architecture/Cuzqueño Lunch After breakfast at the hotel, we enjoy a leisurely morning giving a chance for personal shopping and sightseeing Cuzco. Relax and explore on your own and discover the culture and architecture that contribute to Cuzco's designation as a World Heritage site by UNESCO. We then join at noon for a typical Cuzqueño lunch, followed by a tour of the Archaeological and Regional History Museums. The Archaeological Museum houses the finest collection of artifacts in the region, including an extensive exhibit of ceramics and a display of gold and turquoise figurines. The Regional History Museum is in the former mansion of Admiral Maldonado which rests upon Inca foundations, and has a fine display of colonial architecture, furniture and paintings. We then return to our hotel where you will enjoy dinner at a recommended restaurant. (B,L)
Day 6 Two Huari Ruins /Two Village's Churches/Box Lunch After breakfast we leave Cuzco and drive towards Puno to visit the two ruins. These sites are major prehistoric Huari culture centers in the Valley of Cuzco built before the Incas. The full day is dedicated to the exploration of these sites and learning about the exciting discoveries that have been unearthed. On the way down to these sites we stop at two churches. These churches give us a unique insight into the religious mentality of the late eighteenth century, and of the impact of Christianity on the native population. The painter of both churches was Tadeo Escalante, an indigenous artist trained in Cusco. A box lunch is provided, and upon return to Cuzco you have dinner at a restaurant with suggestions from your expedition leader. (B,L)
Day 7 Chinchero/Ruins/Weaving/Market—Ollantaytambo (Inca Town)/Ruins/Lunch—Yucay/Dinner After breakfast at the hotel, we drive to the Andean town of Chinchero (12,335 feet) in the northwest highlands that gives us a panoramic view of the snowcapped Urubamba range with the mountains of Veronica and Pitusiray. These mountain peaks climb to over 18,00 feet and are a breathtaking view. Chincero is a charming community that combines Inca and colonial architecture. We visit the ruins of Inca Yupanqui's palace with the massive Inca wall and its ten trapezoidal niches that overlooks the village's main square. We visit the town's colonial church and join a local weaving process which has remained virtually unchanged for centuries. We watch as wool is carded and spun, then dyed, and finally learn about the different techniques used to create ponchos, fajas (belts), and mantas (shawls). We then drive down into the lower end of the fertile valley, passing burial tombs and farming terraces that still are used to grow barley, wheat, corn and quinoa. Lunch is served in the valley when we reach the town of Ollantaytambo. We explore the main plaza and some of the side streets of this unique town, which still retains the original plan and architectural foundation built and designed by the Incas. Before we leave we tour the impressive terraced remains of a Temple and see the running waters of a Bath and then return up the valley to the community of Yucay (9,745 feet) and your charming hotel where we spend the night and have dinner. (B,L,D)
alumni, members of museums, clubs or other organizations, a business associates group, high school expeditions, senior center groups or travel clubs. Personalized attention to your particular needs is our specialty. We work with renowned, top-of-the line tour operators, guides and specialists in each area of interest.Private tours are priced individually according to the length of the expedition, what activities and extensions are included, the number of participants, the category level of the accommodations, special lecturers and guides presenting educational material and meals and extra services that are included. What makes the difference is not just a matter of economics but the richness and caliber of your experience. Contact us for further information and pricing.
Day 8 Machu Picchu/Train/Lunch/Ruins/Dinner Early this morning we return to Ollantaytambo to catch the tourist train for a one and a half hour ride to Machu Picchu. After our ascent to the ruins by bus, we check into the hotel and have an early lunch before we take a special tour of the archaeological site. Machu Picchu is a remarkable work of art between man and nature and a jewel of Inca architecture. It is a city in harmony with its environment perched atop a narrow crest high above the meandering Urubamba River and surrounded by the rugged, green slopes of the forested Andean mountains. Our visit to the Lost City of the Incas (discovered in 1911 by the American historian, Hiram Bingham and never reached by the Spanish Conquistadors) will include the Temples and Tombs, the ceremonial water fountains and baths, and the Sacred Plazas. We will take a thirty minute walk that leads to the Inca Drawbridge before returning to the hotel for dinner. (B,L,D)
Day 9 Machu Picchu Ruins/Orchids/Lunch/Train—Cuzco You rise at dawn with the sun's first light and experience the mystical magic of this sacred city and its sublime beauty. After breakfast there are several optional activities available. Huayna Picchu or Young Peak, (8,860 feet) which looms over the citadel in the background and a one hour climb (one way) along a steep trail of stairs that ends at the terraces and ruins on top, providing an excellent "bird's eye" view of Machu Picchu citadel. Or, take an hour and a half hike downhill through the forest which ends at the partially excavated temple site. Those who prefer may simply stay back and explore the hotel's orchid gardens or meditate on the archaeological wonders before we return to the bus and or tourist train back to Cuzco. We return to the the hotel for the night. We arrive in Cuzco early in the evening so dinner will be on your own. (B,L)
Day 10 Cuzco/Art Museums/Artist's Quarter/Shopping/Farewell Dinner After breakfast we walk across the main plaza to visit the Museum of Religious Art in Cuzco. This building was constructed on the foundations of the Inca Roca's palace, the building was first used as the residence of the Marquis of Buenavista and then as the Archbishop's palace before being donated by the Church to house a collection of art from the Cuzco School of Art. Following this we walk to the local artist's quarter where many artists have their shops. This is a sector of the city that also has lovely colonial architecture. A lunch spot will be recommended and the afternoon is at your leisure for personal shopping or sightseeing. In the evening we join our group for a special farewell dinner at a specially selected restaurant. (B,D)
Day 11 Cuzco—Lima/PreColumbian Museums We have a leisurely breakfast in Cuzco and transfer to the airport for the flight back to Lima. We return to your comfortable hotel and in the afternoon we tour two Archaeological Museums whose collections of Pre-Columbian artifacts are among the most extensive in Peru. The remainder of the day is unstructured to allow for personal activities and dinner on your own to try a typical Criollo dinner at one of the city's fine restaurants near the hotel. (B)
Day 12 Lima/Leisure, Museums or Shopping—Fly Gateway City We enjoy a day of leisure in Lima, allowing us to visit any museums we may have missed or do some last minute personal shopping. Dayrooms are available for use at our hotel. Lunch and dinner are on your own. We are picked up at the hotel in the early evening to drive back to the airport, and are assisted in checking in for our flight back to Miami with connections to our gateway city the following morning. (B)Day 13 Gateway City There is an early morning arrival in the gateway city with connecting flights back to your city after passing through customs.
• Comprehensive pre-departure planning packet.
• A trust account protects funds received and an insurance company will be recommended for additional flight and travel insurance.
• All transfers (on the scheduled days) and ground transportation in private vehicles with professional drivers.
• Reconfirmation of International, local and return flights as well as check-in and luggage assistance at all airports in Peru.
• Round-trip Machu Picchu tourist bus and train tickets.
• All accommodations in first-class (3, 4 or 5 star) hotels per your choice and on a double basis with private baths.
• All meals indicated on the itinerary (B-breakfast; L-lunch; D-dinner). Vegetarian meals accommodated on request (advance notice required).
• All tours and excursions listed including all of the necessary entrance fees.
• Local English-speaking escorts, and local English-speaking assistant guides for services and transfers.
• A Single Supplement provides single room accommodations in all hotels.
• Local airport departure taxes.
• Meals, tours, services or excursions not indicated on the itinerary, nor alcoholic beverages.
• Personal clothing and equipment, nor items of a personal nature like laundry or phone calls.
• Tips to the local staff as warranted.
• Expenses incurred in preparing for this program such as but not limited to non refundable airline tickets or traveler's insurance, nor additional expenses resulting from flight delays, schedule changes, cancellations, or missed connections.
A two-week tailor made itinerary for two, excluding international flights, staying in four and five star hotels, starts from approximately $3400 per person.
If you choose tourist-standard hotels, the price can start at $2300 per person.
In budget accommodation the prices can go down to $1400 per person. Contact us for a better idea of our itineraries and prices.
$500 p.p.deposit due upon registration
Second payment due 90 days before departure
Balance Due 60 days before departure
High rated agency: 9 day tour at $5,590 per person
Travcoa: 14 day tour at $9,495 per person
Top rated agency: 11 day tour at $8,295 person
Blue Parallel: 7 day tour $7,500
"I just wanted to send you a quick email to let you know we are back in Wisconsin and could not have had a better time in Peru! It was so wonderful. More wonderful than we could have ever imagined!!!
The guides were terrific and everyone else we were in contact with were just as fantastic!
Please let them know how much we appreciate their hard work and dedication to make our trip one we will remember forever!
And also, please extend a special thanks for the beautiful necklaces Matt and I were given as a gift. That was so thoughtful! We love them.
Elvi, thanks so much for your hard work as well. We are planning to return to Peru for a second adventure in a few more years, or as soon as we can save up the money! We will definitely keep your company in mindfor another possible tour.
Carlie (and Matt)"
Cultural Expeditions offers:
Tour programs to Peru to discover the wonders of Machu Picchu, Lake Titicaca, the Inca city of Cusco and the Sacred Valley.
This is a sample of a 12 day tailor-made luxury group tour to Peru. Travel to Peru's Spanish and Andean history, archaeology, arts and culture with expert knowledgeable trip leadership.
Travel packages are tailored to your area of interests and dates of travel.