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Peru & Machu Picchu

Travel ToursSue Stilwell, owner of S&S Tours, Featured on the cover of National Tour Association, Courier Magazine June 2013.

Cultural Immersion the S & S Way
Sue Stilwell has a passion for the people of Latin America. Her company, S & S Tours, offers small group learning adventures to Spanish-speaking countries in Central and South America that focus on connecting travelers with natives. Read More…

 

Learning Adventure Tour – Escorted Group Tour Dates & Prices TBA

Rail fans & ancient history lovers will be thrilled with this 12-day tour to Peru. The tour begins and ends in Lima, the capital of the Spanish empire in South America.  Founded in 1535 by Francisco Pizarro, time in this rich historical “City of the Kings” is most rewarding. Your city tour includes catacombs and the greatest collection of Pre-Colombian ceramics in the country.

The Peruvian Andes are arguably the most beautiful on the continent and are home to millions of highland Indians who still speak the ancient tongue of Quechua and maintain a traditional way of life.  You cannot resist photographing these colorful peoples and their smiling llamas grazing on their small terraced farms. The multiple layers of fascinating great civilizations of pre-Hispanic cultures that occupied this territory 15,000 years ago make it the historical-archeological treasure of South America. This trip begins and ends in Lima, Peru.   It is called the “City of the Kings,” as it was the capital of the Spanish Empire in South America.  Founded in 1535 by Francisco Pizarro, a tour of this rich historical city is most rewarding.  Lima is 500 ft. a.s.l.

machu picchu peru travel toursExperience the splendor achieved by the ancient Inca civilization as you travel Cusco, the “Archeological Capital of America”.   The visit to Cusco alone would justify traveling to Peru.  Tour the ancient ruins around the city and get your appetite whet for Machu Picchu.

Machu Picchu Peru Travel Tours

Ride the narrow-gauge tourist railroad from Cusco to the ultimate destination of the trip–Machu Picchu, the Sacred Lost City of the Incas.  You experience a sense of awe as you enter this mist-shrouded citadel which rests at around 8000ft elevation.  It is the most palpable reminder of the powerful Andean civilization that stretched some 3000 miles from southern Colombia to central Chile in the 15th and 16th centuries.  With your guide, take plenty of time to walk the Inca Trail and explore this mountaintop refuge.  You stay two nights so there is ample time to climb Wayna Picchu if you desire or just return to the ruins to soak of more of this mystical atmosphere.

End your tour on the highest navigable lake in the world, Lake Titicaca.  The lake is the cradle of the Inca civilization.  Boat out for a visit to the floating islands of the ancient Uros people (their pigs live on floating islands, too!)  Taquile Island (a UNESCO Patrimony of Humanity) is also on your visitation list that day.  The Quechua Indians that inhabit the Island are known for their high quality weavings.  On shore, climb the tower tombs of the high class Colla culture and marvel at the replica of Michelangelo’s “Pieta” in the Andean village of Lampa.  Fly from Juliaca (outside of Puno) to your departure city, Lima.

Escorted Group Tour Package – (Independent Packages Available)

Day 1

Arrive in Lima, Peru.  500 ft. elevation. Jose Antonio Hotel No meals included
Day 2 An impressive morning visit to the Larco Herrera Museum with the greatest collection of pre-Columbian ceramics in the country.    A one-hour afternoon flight to Cusco, the Imperial City at 11,047 ft. elevation. Jose Antonio Hotel in Cusco B, D
Day 3 In the Sacred Valley, tour the Pisac artisan marketplace.   Next, climb some of the Inca Empire’s most formidable feats of architecture at the fortress ruins in Ollantaytambo.  Overnight in Ollantaytambo at Pakaritampu Hotel.     Pakaritampu Hotel B, buffet lunch at the
Tunupa Restaurant.

Day 4 Board the Vista Dome train on the narrow -gauge tourist railroad from Ollantaytambo to the foot of Machu Picchu at 8:15 am.  Arrive at 9:40 am.  As it nears Machu Picchu, there are views of snow-capped mountains, Indian villages and precarious terraced fields all around.    Tour the new museum and garden at Aguas Calientes.   Hotel  Mapi, Aguas Calientes.    Hotel Hatuchay Towers  B, L.
Day 5 An all-day guided tour of “the lost city” of Machu Picchu (never discovered by the Spaniards).   You sense you are on sacred ground at this mountaintop refuge of Incan royalty, one of the world’s most stunning sights.  It will more than live up to any of your expectations!   Take an optional walk on the Inca Trail, 8000 ft. above sea level (asl), and to the Inca Bridge.    Hotel Hatuchay Towers B, D
Day 6 Board  the Vista Dome train for our journey to Ollantaytambo where we will get off and travel by land through Chinceros (a typical Inca rural village and Moray (the land configurations that are not unlike the Nazca Lines) .   Arrive  around 7:30 pm in Cusco.  Jose Antonio Hotel in Cusco B, L
Day 7 A guided half-day tour of the Inca ruins surrounding Cusco includes the formidable Inca building of the fortress of Sacsayhuaman, the rock sanctuary of Quenqo, the archeological group of Puca Pucara and the Virgin Baths of Tambomachay. Jose Antonio Hotel in Cusco B, and Dinner show at Tunupa Restaurant
Day 8 Enjoy an all-day private  van tour with stops at the unique church at Andahuaylillas and the archeological site Raqchi between Cusco to Puno on the shores of Lake Titicaca, 10,820 ft. asl Hotel Casa Andina Private Collection in Puno B, L.
 Day 9 Boat this morning on Lake Titicaca to  visit the  Uros Floating Islands.   They seem to materialize straight out of National Geographic,  Even the pigs have their own floating islands!  Then on to Taquile Island, inhabited by a small indigenous community of Quechuas that live happily, protected by the sun and the gods of the mountains, keeping still all the customs of their ancestors. They are known for the high quality of their weavings. This island has been declared Patrimony of Humanity by UNESCO. Hotel Casa Andina, Private
Collection in Puno. 
B, L.
Day 10 Overlooking Lake Umayo, climb the Chullpas  tower tombs, in the  Sllustani ruins of the high class Colla culture.  This civilization, of Aymara origin, was more ancient than the Incas. The next visit is the town of Lampa.  Lampa is one of the few Andean villages preserved in the traditional style.  The church of this town has many silver altars, and a famous  replica of Michelangelo’s “Pieta.”

 Hotel Casa Andina, Private
Collection in Puno.  

B, L.
Day 11 Fly early this morning  from the town of Juliaca (25 miles outside Puno) to Lima (about an hour’s flight).  A city tour of Lima goes to the Plaza de Armas, the Cathedral where Pizarro’s remains lay, and the San Francisco Convent with its Cloister and Catacombs.   Jose Antonio Hotel in Lima B, D
Day 12 Depart Lima   Breakfast Included.

2017 Package price is $3795/person double room.  The package price includes:  11 hotel nights, two in-country flights, roundtrip Vista Dome train tickets to and from Machu Picchu,  all tours,  local expert bilingual guides,  all entry fees, all breakfasts plus at least one other meal each day, and  normal tips (meals, luggage, maids).

It does not include flights to and from Peru,  airport transfers,  airport departure taxes (about $35), meals not designated in the itinerary, local guide and driver tips (suggested $6-$8 per person per day for guide and about $3 per person per day for driver), trip insurance, or a second-day entrance fee to Machu Picchu (for those who wish to climb Wayna Picchu or just spend more time there—about $50 entrance fees plus around $20 roundtrip bus ticket).
Optional Extension to Galapagos Available