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 ...

Inca Trail Holidays

Sample Itinerary - REF SOUTH AMERICA 215

If you like the itinerary below please quote REF SOUTH AMERICA 215 when enquiring for further details.

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Day 1: Quito

Bienviendos a Ecuador! Upon arrival you will be met at the international airport and take a scheduled transfer to your hotel in Quito where the rest of the day is free.

Day 2: Quito

Quito’s UNESCO-listed colonial quarter is one of the largest and best-preserved in South America. Your tour this morning takes you through Independence Plaza, past the Cathedral and the Presidential Palace, and on to the temple of La Compañia de Jesús with its dazzling gilded interior and the impressive façade of the Monastery of San Francisco. Next visit the Ethnographic Museum to learn about the different Native American groups living in Ecuador. Remainder of the day at leisure.

Day 3: Quito

Rich in ancestral cultural heritage and set amongst stunning Andean scenery of mountains, waterfalls and lakes, the market town of Otavalo is one of Ecuador’s most popular destinations and today you will enjoy a scheduled tour and lunch. Arriving in time to fully appreciate the activity of Otavalo market, peruse the stalls of ponchos, scarves, blankets, handbags and much more. Practise your bartering skills and pick up a bargain. Unlike other Ecuadorian markets and their raucous noise, Otavaleños barter in silence. Proceed to the Indian village of Peguche where artisans weave in their own homes. We then return for evening in Quito.

Day 4: Quito - Amazon Jungle - Ecuador

A scenic flight over the majestic Andes mountains followed by a motorised canoe ride along the Napo River brings you to your stunning jungle lodge. Over the next three days you will have plenty of opportunities to discover the pristine Ecuadorian rainforest and its colourful characters. During the day venture out into the wilds for wildlife spotting and outdoor activities and at night share your stories with the other guests at the lodge as the sounds of the jungle create your very own soundtrack.

Days 5-6: Amazon Jungle - Ecuador

Swim in the local lakes, observe bird species from the mini observational towers, visit the vibrant butterfly house and explore the jungle at night on foot or by boat looking out for the glowing orange eyes of the black caiman. There’ll also be numerous hiking trails available along the Rio Napo or deep into the rainforest and for those looking for a bird’s eye view, the canopy walkway is the perfect vertigo-inducing experience.

Day 7: Amazon Jungle - Ecuador - Quito

After your final breakfast in the Amazon, take an easy walk on the boardwalk to watch monkeys one last time before departing your jungle lodge and heading back to Quito by plane. On arrival you will take a scheduled transfer to your hotel.

Day 8: Quito - Lima

Today we will transfer you to the airport in time for your flight to Lima. Arriving here, meet our Peruvian team waiting to transfer you to your hotel.

Day 9: Lima - Cuzco

Today we discover why Lima has historically been such an important city with a sightseeing tour that covers Lima’s most impressive colonial buildings as well as a number of fascinating museums. The afternoon is free for you to explore Lima further.

Day 10: Cuzco

Enjoy a day touring the Scared Valley. Including 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. The day of touring concludes with a visit to the impressive fortress and citadel of Ollantaytambo. This evening you will meet the rest of your group for the Inca Trail Hike and sort out luggage etc at a pre arranged pre departure briefing.

Day 11: Cuzco - Inca Trail

We depart Cuzco early in the morning to begin the infamous Inca Trail Trek. During your hike you will cross spectacular passes and visit more Inca ruins en-route to Machu Picchu. A local guide will lead this expedition and there will be cooks and porters to carry the main equipment, leaving you with just a small daypack. Nights will be spent in two person tents in designated campsites along the route. A relatively easy 13km walk today will get you limbered up for Tommorow.On the third day of the trek we pass the ruins of Runkurakay, Sayacmarca and Phuyupatamarca, walking approximately 15 kilometres in seven hours and spending the night in Winay-Wayna.

Day 12: Inca Trail

Today hike the highest pass at Warmiwanusca (4200m) which we reach before lunch. After the pass it is all downhill as the trail winds its way along ancient Inca stairs.

Day 13: Inca Trail

Today we trek pass the ruins of Runkurakay, Sayacmarca and Phuyupatamarca, walking approximately 15 kilometres in seven hours and spending the night in Winay-Wayna.

Day 14: Inca Trail - Cuzco

Early this morning we walk the final leg to the Lost City of Machu Picchu and greet daybreak over the famous ‘Sun Gate’. Enjoy free time to explore Machu Picchu on your own or opt to climb up Huayna Picchu (Young Mountain). Once a completely self-contained city, Machu Picchu was surrounded by agricultural terraces with enough crops to feed the entire population and natural springs provided the city’s water. Today you can explore the remarkably preserved palaces, baths, temples, storage rooms and more. Later in the day you will have the chance to soak your tired muscles in the hot springs before returning to Cuzco by train.

Day 15: 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. This afternoon, enjoy the first of your included Jungle excursions to explore the Amazon.

Days 16-17: Puerto Maldonado and the Amazon

Today and tommorow A wide variety of excursions are on offer from guided walks through the jungle to twilight river cruises. Sail in small wooden canoes or test your vertigo on a canopy walkway, 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.

Day 18: Puerto Maldonado and the Amazon - Lima

Bidding farewell to the jungle head back to Puerto Maldonado by boat for your flight to Lima. If there is time be sure to visit the Inkaterra Butterfly House located close to the airport. Peru boasts the greatest variety of butterflies in the world, many of which can be seen at the Butterfly House. Upon arrival in Lima you will be transferred to your hotel where 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.

Day 19: Lima

Your amazing adventure concludes with hotel check out and a departure airport transfer for your onward journey.