South America Spotlight

Colca Canyon

Created by a vast geological fault, the Colca Canyon is thought to be the deepest canyon in the world measuring ...

Aguas Calientes Holidays

Sample Itinerary - REF SOUTH AMERICA 192

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Day 1: Lima

Bienviendos a Peru! Welcome to Peru and the start of your journey through the land of the Incas. Upon arrival into Lima International Airport you will be met by one of our representatives and transferred to your hotel. After check in spend some time with our rep discussing your up-coming trip. The remainder of the day is free for you to enjoy at leisure.

Day 2: Lima

For centuries Lima was considered the most beautiful city in Spanish America and today discover why with a sightseeing tour that covers Lima’s most impressive colonial buildings as well as a number of fascinating museums. The rest of the day is free. Perhaps head to the local markets for a spot of bargain hunting or mark your final night in Peru in style at one of Lima’s trendy salsa clubs down in San Isidro.

Day 3: Lima - Cuzco

After breakfast transfer to the airport for your flight to Cuzco, known to the Incas as the ‘navel of the world’. Later discover the archaeological capital of South America, Cuzco is home to some of the finest examples of Inca history and architecture, which you will discover touring the sights of the Plaza de Armas, the Catedral and the Koricancha complex – a supreme example of Inca stonework, on an afternoon scheduled tour. Head out further afield to tour the Kenko Amphitheatre, the fortified hunting lodge of Puca Pucara, the stunning imperial baths of Tambo Machay and the megalithic fortress of Sacsayhuaman.

Day 4: Cuzco - Sacred Valley

Explore the Sacred valley area today. On the way to the ancient village of Urubamba stop to visit Awanacancha, an Andean textile centre where the art of Incan textile is kept alive. Continue to the archaeological complex of Pisac, formed of a collection of remains of Incan dwellings, temples and terracing. Enjoy a spot of shopping and practise your bartering skills at the local market before stopping for lunch. The day of touring concludes with a visit to the impressive fortress and citadel of Ollantaytambo.

Day 5: Sacred Valley - Aguas Calientes

Today we further explore the Sacred Valley with visits to Andean villages south of the Río Urubamba. See the lovely paintings from the Cuzco School on display in the attractive colonial church of Chinchero. Continue to Maras where the original Indian aristocratic coats of arms hang on the outside of the church and houses. From here you can also see the salt evaporation ponds, a patchwork of 3,000 wells that have been used since the Incan Empire. Continue to the spectacular agricultural terraces of Moray, a circular system believed to have been used for agricultural experimentation during the Inca period. We then have a scenic train ride to Aguas Calientes and check in to hotel.

Day 6: Aguas Calientes

This morning our guide will take you up to Machu Picchu explore the citadel and the wonderful Temple of the Sun and magical Temple of the Moon on a three hour guided excursion. Other highlights include the fascinating Sacred Plaza and the elaborately carved Intihuatana rock. The afternoon is at your leisure to explore the citadel in your own time. Return to your hotel on the shuttle service when ready.

Day 7: Aguas Calientes - Cuzco

Today spend the day at MAchu Picchu (Entrance ticket not included) Later meet our rep in Aguas Calientes who will assist you in boarding the train back to Cuzco. Arriving in the evening.

Day 8: Cuzco - Puerto Maldonado and the Amazon

Early this morning board a flight to the remote jungle settlement of Puerto Maldonado - the starting point for a scheduled excursion into the Amazon Jungle. A boat ride along the Madre de Dios River brings you to your jungle lodge where you will spend the next three nights in a beautiful cabaña. Enjoy the first of your included jungle activities this afternoon. (OVERNIGHT INKATERRA RESERVA AMAZONICA)

Days 9-10: Puerto Maldonado and the Amazon

A wide variety of excursions are on offer for today and tomorrow from guided walks through the jungle to twilight river cruises. Sail in small wooden canoes or test your vertigo on a canopy walkway. Over the next three days you will learn much about the Amazonian wildlife and its most colourful characters with excursions available to the Tambopata National Reserve, Gamitana Creek and the Inkaterra Ecological Reserve. As daylight wanes share your daily experience of life in the rainforest with your fellow guests with the captivating sounds of the jungle your soundtrack. (OVERNIGHT INKATERRA RESERVA AMAZONICA)

Day 11: Puerto Maldonado and the Amazon - Puno

Bidding farewell to the jungle head back to Puerto Maldonado by boat for your flight to Cuzco. Arriving here, we takje you to the bus station to catch the comfy public bus to Puno. Enjoy the scenery as you pass through some spectacular mountains along the way. Arriving in Puno, meet our team who wait to transfer you to your hotel.

Day 12: Puno - Islas Taquile and Amantani

After breakfast board a yacht from Puno port for a shared cruise and tour around the floating islands of Uros. Inhabited by fishermen and hunters, these beautiful islands are made from totora reeds and were built in order to escape the imposition of invading cultures. Your cruise continues to the genuine island of Amantani, renowned for the fine crafts made by inhabitants. Enjoy lunch in the community before visiting the hilltop sanctuaries of Pachatata and Pachamama. You then settle in to your home stay, meeting the family who will be your host for the night and enjoying home-cooked meals. It’s a fantastic opportunity to learn about these peoples’ lifestyle and culture.

Day 13: Islas Taquile and Amantani - Puno

After breakfast the next morning bid fond farewell to your home stay family and continue to the neighbouring island of Taquile. The peasant community of this island has kept intact the customs and traditions of their ancestors and a visit here is like taking a step back in time. After lunch visit archaeological ruins and soak up the immensity of Lake Titicaca – the world’s highest navigable lake – from the beautiful beaches that line Taquile’s shore. Later return to Puno.

Day 14: Puno - La Paz

This morning we assist you in catching the tourists bus service to La Paz. The bus stops along the way for lunch in the town of Copacabana on Lake Titicaca where you can enjoy your first Bolivian lunch at leisure, you then proceed to La Paz, arriving in the later afternoon.

Day 15: La Paz

Enjoy a full day tour of this scenic city - visit world-class museums like the Gold, Murillo and Costumbrista, explore traditional street markets and head up to the Mirador de Killy Killy for fantastic views over the city. Later on marvel at the geological formations of the Vally of the moon, 10km outside of town.

Day 16: La Paz - Uyuni / Salar De Uyuni Region

Travelling through the Bolivian Highlands you get the opportunity to see the Aymara Indian's way of life - one of the oldest American cultures. Their main constructions which you will visit are the Kalasasaya temple with the main stone work done like the Gate of the Sun, the monoliths Ponce and Fraile, the Akapana pyramid and the Semi underground temple. Visit of the old colonial village of Tiahuanaco, where you can see the use of stones from the ruins in their constructions. Also visit to the Puma Punku temple with the largest pieces of stone and with the highest quality in stone carving. Travel by public overnight bus to Uyuni.

Day 17: Uyuni / Salar De Uyuni Region

Welcome to Uyuni. Arriving in town, our local driver will take you to the shops to buy lots of snacks and stuff for the days ahead, then transfer you to your hotel located on the Salt Flats where your hotel is situated, aptly named the Palacio De Sal.

Day 18: Uyuni / Salar De Uyuni Region

Today is spent driving on the Salt Flats. Visit Inca Huasi (Fish Island) to see the giant cacti and have great views of the salt flats all around. There will be plenty of time for taking amazing photos before we head toward the Tayka Hotel de Piedra, located at San Pedro de Quemez. Dinner is included.

Day 19: Uyuni / Salar De Uyuni Region

After breakfast we leave to travel further south. We will pass through the Chiguana desert area where the scenery will include a number of extinct volcanoes plus the semi active Volcan Ollague. As the journey continues we will pass by high altitude lagoons that are home to 3 species of flamingo before arriving into the desert of Siloli and the “tree of rock” Our final destination for the day is “Laguna Colorado” an amazing red colored lake. Box Lunch on route included. Dinner and overnight at Tayka del Desierto Ojo de Perdiz.

Day 20: Uyuni / Salar De Uyuni Region

Today we have an early start at 5am to visit “Sol de Mañana” geysers and see the bubbling mud pools and steam jets. We will then continue to some hot springs where you will have a chance to relax in the warm water pools and we will also breakfast here. After our relaxing break we continues via the “Dali desert” to see “laguna Verde” where, if conditions are correct, we see the green mineral waters of this lake at the foot of Volcan Licancabur We then start our return journey back to Uyuni where we arrive approx. 5/6pm and check into a hotel in town (Dinner and overnight at Jardines de Uyuni)

Day 21: Uyuni / Salar De Uyuni Region

This morning we transfer you to the airport for the first flight back to La Paz. Arriving here, connect onto your flight homeward bound.