Nowadays, Peru is considered as one of the most diversified countries in the world, as it offers a series of alternative options for tourism. This Basic Southern Peru Program was designed in order to give you a broad variety of entertainment, in different aspects. In its natural part, we will visit places like the Ballestas Islands, the Oasis of Huacachina, as well as the vast desert of the Peruvian coast, so as to notice the changes in landscapes, while going over the Andes and their different altitude levels. On its historical and cultural sides, we´ll visit sites that present many architectural structures left by people who lived in places like Pachacamac, Paracas, Nazca, the Colca canyon, Lake Titicaca, some localities that were modified during the Spanish colonial period and of course, the magnificent Incan monuments, in Cusco, the Sacred Valley and the impressing Machu Picchu.
During that adventure, we’ll travel quite a lot by van or bus, through many places, with options for sand buggies, a flight over the Nazca Lines, a short hike to Machu Picchu, a totora boat ride to Lake Titicaca´s Uros floating islands.
The trip’s multiple activity program goes non-stop from beginning to end. So, you must be prepared for that.
Arrival in Lima
After your arrival in Lima, you´ll check-in at your hotel. our representatives will assist with your transfer from the airport to the hotel, giving you information about the next days´ activities.
Pachacamac – Paracas
Taking the Pan American Highway and heading South, you´ll stop in Pachacamac which presents pre-Inca and Inca architectural remains, consisting of temples, palaces, streets and altars. Then, you´ll continue towards the South, passing through the Peruvian coastal desert towns of Cañete and Chincha, to get to Paracas and its National Park, to stay overnight at a hotel. Breakfast.
Ballestas Islands – Ica – Nazca
Your first activity will start just after leaving the Port of Paracas, with a shuttle boat ride, to visit the Ballestas Islands, where you´ll have the chance to observe sea birds, as well as sea lions and have a closer contact with the Pacific Ocean. Afterwards, you´ll get back to Paracas, to take our van or bus, towards the South, to visit Ica and its regional museum. Later on, you´ll stop at the Oasis of Huacachina, for a quick lunch. Then, Nazca is located almost three hours of van ride from Ica. There, during afternoon you will be transferred to the airport for your 35minutes Nasca Lines overflight, after it, you will be transferred to Nasca for overnight in town. . Breakfast.
Puquio – Challhuanca
Leaving Nazca behind, today you´ll go ahead for your first climb over the closest mountains of the Andean Cordillera and some altitude problems might arise. So, please listen carefully to your guide´s advice, to be prepared for it. The landscape will become more amazing, along the meandering road, climbing and descending hills, as it will be possible to see the first South American cameloids, such as llamas, alpacas, huanacos and vicuñas. If you are lucky, we might also sight condors flying over the mountains, as we´ll be going by Puquio; a village lost in the mountains, to still climb to a high mountain pass, at 4,600 m./15,088 ft. and descend to an inter-Andean valley, with many agricultural fields, all the way to the village of Chalhuanca for an overnight stay. Breakfast.
Abancay – Apurimac Valley – Cusco
Less than three hours from Chalhuanca, is Abancay; the capital city of the state of Apurimac, at an altitude of 2,500 m./8,200 ft., which we´ll just pass by, in order to ascend to another pass at 4,150 m./ 13,612 ft., to contemplate from its top, the Vilcabamba Mountain Range, with countless snow-capped peaks some of which are considered as glaciers. A bit further down, we´ll visit the archaeological remains of Saywite, where there is a carved rock which seems to be a scale model, with symbols. Later on, we´ll descend to the Cunya Bridge, in the itinerary´s deepest part of the Apurimac Valley, to have a closer look at the Apurimac River which is considered as the longest source of the Amazon River. The last ascension of the day will end in Cusco, at 3,400 m./11,152 ft. Breakfast.
City tour of Cusco and surrounding archaeological sites
In the morning, we’ll visit the Inca Temple of the Sun and Qoricancha, to then go on with the nearby archaeological sites of Saqsayhuaman and Qenqo. During the afternoon, you´ll visit the Cathedral leaving the remain of the day at leisure. Breakfast.
Sacred Valley – Ollantaytambo
Today, you´ll leave Cusco for three days and two nights and after a bit more than an hour´s van ride, we´ll start seeing the impressive Urubamba River and Sacred Valley dominated by huge mountains. Our first visit will be at Pisac´s Incan archaeological site, observing the magnificent surrounding farming benched terraces, on the mountain slopes. Later on, we´ll stop at Pisac´s local market, to have a stroll and shop alpaca clothes, handicraft, etc.
After lunch, the road will take yo through many localities along the Sacred Valley, such as Coya, Lamay, Calca, Huayllabamba, Yucay, Urubamba, to stop in Ollantaytambo, where we´ll visit the Incan fortress and later on, stay at a local hotel. Breakfast and Lunch.
Short Inca Trail hike to Machu Picchu – Aguas Calientes
After a train journey of less than one hour and a half, we´ll start hiking towards Machu Picchu for almost eight hours, visiting on the way, the archaeological sites of Chachabamba and Wiñaywayna. In the afternoon, we´ll have a quick look at Machu Picchu and then, rest that night at a hotel in Aguas Calientes. Breakfast and Box Lunch.
Machu Picchu – Cusco
First, we´ll have an early breakfast in the village of Aguas Calientes, to then take a bus ride up and visit the Inca City of Machu Picchu on a guided tour, after which we´ll still have time to wander around the site on our own. In the afternoon, we´ll go back to Aguas Calientes and catch the train bound to Ollantaytambo and then to Cusco, to get there at night. Breakfast.
Cusco to relax
Perhaps, after many days of full time activities, everyone will be waiting for this break. Time for shopping, relaxing or exploring the Inca Empire´s capital city and for those who want to take advantage of that time, there is still the option of going rafting on the Vilcanota River. Ask to our representatives for other options. Breakfast.
High Plateau – Puno
A van ride to the South of Cusco will take us on the road to Puno. On the way, we´ll stop in Raqchi, to visit an archaeological site originally erected during the Inca civilization. Later on, we´ll stop at the La Raya Mountain Pass, at 4,338 m./14,229 ft., where it will be nice to see the change of topography along the road. In the afternoon, on the high plateau, we´ll go through localities like Ayaviri, Pucara and Juliaca, to end our journey with an overnight stay in Puno. Breakfast.
Uros Islands – Chivay
Today, our visit will start as we´ll leave the Port of Puno, for a motorized boat ride on Lake Titicaca and just short of thirty minutes later, we´ll get to the floating islands of the Uros. After a tour there, for almost two hours, we´ll return to the mainland and catch our van to Chivay. On the way, we might stop to see the landscape and perhaps, sight flamingos, vicuñas and even some active volcanoes with fumes coming out. Later in the afternoon, in Colca valley, we´ll have the option to visit some hot springs. Breakfast.
Condor’s Cross – Arequipa
Today you will have the change to see the largest flying bird of the Andes, also looking at the Colca Canyon, considered as the second deepest in the world. A van ride for almost two hours, on the left side of the canyon, will lead you to the Condor´s Cross, where we´ll wait to see those large birds come and fly around us. Later on, on the way back to Colca valley, you´ll often stop to discover thousands of farming benched terraces built by pre-Inca and Inca populations and in the afternoon, we´ll head back to Arequipa; the second largest town in the country after Lima. Breakfast.
Santa Catalina – Downtown Arequipa – Lima
The White City is the other name of Arequipa, because of the white volcanic “sillar” stones used in its colonial buildings. Today´s first activity will be the visit of Santa Catalina´s Convent, to later on go to the Main Square and have a quick look inside the Cathedral, as well as an optional visit to the Juanita (Ice Maiden) Museum.
In the late afternoon, you´ll board the plane for a one and a half hour flight back to Lima, arriving there in the evening, to spend the last night of your trip. Breakfast.
Leisure in Lima – End of our services
According withyour flight schedule, you may have options in Lima, to visit the downtown area, some of the museums or just take it easy to prepare your luggage. The transfer to the airport will be on your own and if you require our assistance, please ask our representative for it.
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