Classic Machu Picchu and Lake Titicaca
10 Days/9 Nights
From $2,149 per person
(Dbl. Occupancy, Not Incl. Airfare)
Appreciate Peru’s fascinating cultures and history in one of our most popular tours. It includes Lima, Cusco, the Sacred Valley of the Incas, an overnight stay in Machu Picchu, and an excursion to Lake Titicaca. You will have city tours of Lima and Cusco, and visit the Indian artisan market in Pisac and the fortress of Ollantaytambo in the Sacred Valley. You will have a free day in Machu Picchu to revisit the site or enjoy the surrounding area, and then travel by train to Puno and Lake Titicaca to experience the unique cultures of the inhabitants of Peru’s Altiplano.
Lodging and Meals: This tour includes accommodations for 9 nights (3 nights in Lima, 3 nights in Cusco, 1 night in Machu Picchu, and 2 nights in Puno), and 14 meals (9 breakfasts, 4 lunches, and 1 dinner).
Best Time to Go: April-October.
Day 1: Lima
Depart to Lima. After passing through immigration and customs, proceed to the reception area, where our inbound services representative will be holding a sign with your name on it. You will be greeted and then transferred to your hotel. Overnight in Lima.
Day 2: Lima-City Tour-Folkloric Dinner Show.
In the afternoon, you will have a city tour of Lima. The tour begins in Miraflores with a stop at the Parque del Amor, a seaside park with a huge statue of a kissing couple and continues with a drive by of the Huaca Huallamarca, a restored adobe pyramid dating from the pre-Inca period located in San Isidro. The next stop is the Plaza de Armas in downtown Lima, where you will visit City Hall (Palacio Municipal), the Government Palace (Palacio de Gobierno), and the Cathedral of Lima. The last stop is the Convent of Santo Domingo. Following the tour, you will be returned to your hotel.
In the evening, you will enjoy a Folkloric Dinner Show at La Dama Juana Restaurant. Overnight in Lima. (B,D)
Day 3: Lima-Cusco-City Tour.
Early morning transfer to the airport for the flight to Cusco. Upon arrival, you will be transferred to your hotel. Because of the high altitude (10,912 feet above sea level), we recommend that you rest for a short period. In the afternoon, you will have a city tour that includes a walk-through of the Cathedral, the Koricancha (‘site of gold’), typical streets, and the four ruins that surround the city: the Sacsayhuaman Fortress, Kenko, Puca Pucara, and Tampumachay. Overnight in Cusco. (B)
Day 4: Cusco-Sacred Valley-Awanakancha-Pisac Market-Ollantaytambo.
Today you will have a full-day excursion to the Sacred Valley of the Incas. The tour begins at Awanakancha, a living museum of the Peruvian Andes, where you can observe traditional textile dyeing and weaving techniques and the four types of camelids that are native to the region. You will also visit the Indian artisan market in Pisac and have lunch at a local restaurant (included). The last stop is the impressive Inca ruins of Ollantaytambo that served as both a fortress and ceremonial center, and is the site of a short-lived victory by the Incas over the Spanish. Overnight in Cusco. (B,L)
Note: The Indian market is open on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays from October to March, and daily from April to September. On the days of the week that the market is not open, you will be taken to the Inca ruins above the village.
Day 5: Cusco-Machu Picchu.
Early morning transfer to the train station for the ride to Machu Picchu, ‘the Lost City of the Incas’ (7,900 feet). This mountaintop citadel, which served as both a center of worship and an astronomic observatory, is located in the middle of the cloud forest overlooking the Urubamba River. There are both agricultural and urban areas constructed with the precision stonework that the Incas are known for. The agricultural area consists of terraces and food storehouses, and the urban area contains temples, squares, and royal tombs. Guided tour followed by lunch at the Sanctuary Lodge. In the afternoon, you will be transferred to your hotel. Overnight in Aguas Calientes. (B,L)
Day 6: Machu Picchu-Cusco.
This is a free day to explore Machu Picchu on your own. You may want to hike Huayna Picchu or enjoy another activity. Mid-afternoon, you will depart from Machu Picchu by train to Poroy Station in the Sacred Valley, and then be taken to your hotel in Cusco. Overnight in Cusco. (B)
Note: Hiking Huayna Picchu requires a permit. To ensure availability, we recommend purchasing the permit at the time of booking.
Day 7: Cusco-Puno.
Early morning transfer to the train station for the train ride to Puno (12,566 feet) on the PeruRail Titicaca Train. Upon arrival, you will be transferred to your hotel. Overnight in Puno. (B,L)
Note: The PeruRail Titicaca Train operates every Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday year-round.
Day 8: Puno-Lake Titicaca-Taquile Island-Floating Islands of Uros.
Morning departure by boat to Taquile Island on Lake Titicaca. The island is known for the hospitality of its people, their distinctive knit clothing, and its landscape with Inca terracing where potatoes, corn, and quinoa are cultivated. Lunch is included. On the return to Puno, you will stop at the Floating Islands of the Uros people, which are part of the Titicaca National Reserve. These islands, as well as the houses and boats used by their inhabitants, are made of totora, a water reed that can grow to 10 feet tall. Overnight in Puno. (B,L)
Day 9: Puno-Chullpas of Sillustani-Lima.
Morning transfer to the airport for your return flight to Lima. On the way to the airport, you will visit the chullpas of Sillustani on the shores of Lake Umayo. Some of these stone funerary towers stand nearly 40 feet tall. They house the remains of the nobility who were buried in family groups along with food and their possessions for the afterlife. Upon arrival in Lima, you will be transferred to your hotel. Overnight in Lima. (B)
Day 10: Lima.
Check out at noon. Transfer to the airport for your return flight to your final destination. (B)
B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner
A Note About Your Free Day in Machu Picchu
On your free day, you will be on your own. If you choose to revisit Machu Picchu, you will need to purchase a second entrance ticket, which currently costs $74 per person. If you are staying in Aguas Calientes, you will also need to purchase a round-trip bus ticket ($28 per person) for transportation to the site. The first bus departs at 5:30 AM. As an alternative to visiting Machu Picchu again, you can hike Huayna Picchu (a +/- 60 minute hike), or partake in another activity. The cost for hiking Huayna Picchu is $13 (in addition to the second entrance ticket). At the end of the day (mid-late afternoon), you will walk to the train station for the return ride to Poroy train station, where our local representative will be waiting for you to take you to your hotel in Cusco.
- South American Vacations’ expert pre-departure planning services and documentation.
- Airport/hotel transfers including baggage handling.
- Hotel accommodations including taxes and service charges.
- Excursion to Machu Picchu including overnight stay and transportation via Vistadome train.
- Transportation to Puno via PeruRail Titicaca Train.
- Other excursions as indicated on the itinerary including all applicable entrance fees.
- Meals as indicated on the itinerary.
- Local, English-speaking tour guides.
Price Does Not Include
- International airfare.
- Domestic airfare.
- Meals not indicated on the itinerary.
- Gratuities to tour guides, drivers, and hotel staff.
- Gifts and personal items.
- Travel insurance.
We will be happy to quote the cost of airfare and travel insurance and to make these arrangements for you.
Group Private: All transfers are private, and the city tour of Lima, city tour of Cusco, Sacred Valley of the Incas excursion, and Machu Picchu guided tour are group tours for single passengers and 3 star accommodations, and private for 4 Star, 5 Star, and Deluxe accommodations. In Puno, the Taquile Island and Floating Islands of Uros excursion is a group tour, and the chullpas of Sillustani excursion is private.
Elevations: Cusco is 10,912 feet (above sea level), the Sacred Valley of the Incas is 8,944 feet, Machu Picchu is 7,900 feet, and Puno is 12,566 feet.
Acclimatization: In order to acclimatize to the higher altitude of Cusco, we suggest that you travel first to the Sacred Valley of the Incas. If you are interested in this option, which would add one day to your tour, please ask your travel counselor to provide you with an itinerary.
Passport/Visa: U.S., Australian, Canadian, and EU citizens require a passport valid for at least six months from date of entry and return ticket for stays of up to 90 days. Citizens of other countries are advised to contact the Peruvian embassy in their country before traveling.
Travel Insurance: In order to protect your travel investment from unforeseen circumstances that may arise before or during your trip, we strongly recommend that you purchase travel insurance. We offer Allianz Travel Insurance’s Classic and other plans. The Benefits and Coverage Limits are summarized on our Travel Insurance page. Call your travel counselor if you have any questions or to purchase a plan.
To Book This Trip: We require a non-refundable deposit of $500 per person plus the cost of airfare (if we make the arrangements for you). The balance of the trip cost is due 60 days prior to departure.
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