DAY 1: Arrival in Lima
Welcome to Peru!
Arrive in Lima and meet your host, who will escort you to the Costa Ramada del Sol Hotel in the airport. International flights usually arrive late in the evening and your next flight (to Puerto Maldonado) will leave early in the morning so we suggest a good night’s sleep in preparation.
DAY 2: Lima to Tambopata Jungle
Day of Jungle Activities
Your Kuoda host will take you to the airport early in the morning for your flight to Puerto Maldonado. Once you touch down there, you’ll be transported by boat to the Reserva Amazónica lodge in Tambopata for an Amazon luxury travel experience.
After a brief rest, embark on a guided walk in the lush, green rainforest. Your guide will point out the colorful birds tearing through the treetops and unusual insects scuttling on the forest floor. That evening, kick back and enjoy your first Amazon sun set on a twilight boat ride along the Madre de Dios River. As darkness sets, look out for wide-eyed owls, cute capybaras and prehistoric-looking caimans.
DAY 3: Tambopata Jungle
Day of Jungle Activities
In the morning, depart by boat to the Canopy Inkaterra Interpretation Center, where observation platforms provide an eye-level view of the teeming rainforest canopy. Saunter along the high bridges and look out for acrobatic monkeys and adorably lethargic sloths.
After lunch, you’ll move on to the palm-fringed Sandoval Lake to try and find the Amazon´s famous giant river otters and perhaps even take a revitalizing swim, before returning to your stylish jungle lodge.
DAY 4: Tambopata Jungle
Day of Jungle Activities
Start this morning with a boat ride to wander through the botanical gardens of Concepción, where more than 200 plant species thrive.
After lunch, travel by boat to Rolin Island, where you’ll visit a Primate Rescue Center that provides sanctuary for several species of monkeys.
DAY 5: Tambopata to Cusco
Living Museum of Awana Kancha
Today you’ll head upriver to Puerto Maldonado and, after a stop-off at a butterfly farm, you’ll be brought to the airport for a flight to Cusco. From Cusco, a guide will accompany you to the stunning Sacred Valley, whose bucolic farming and weaving towns – a few thousand feet lower in elevation than Cusco – are ideal for acclimatizing. On the way out there, stop at Awana Kancha. At this “living museum,” you’ll come face-to-face with some of South America’s most endearing inhabitants, including alpacas, llamas, vicuñas and guanacos, as well as learning about traditional weaving.
DAY 6: Exploring the Sacred Valley
Ollantaytambo and Pisac’s Archaeological Complex and Pisac Market
Today, valley explorations begin. We’ll start in the ancient town of Ollantaytambo, where the centuries-old influence of the Incas is still very much visible: water from the mountains trickles down to the Inca-built street canals, while original Inca walls and trapezoidal doors are still found here.
With your guide by your side, ascend beyond the stepped, slope-side terraces to the ruins of a centuries-old fortress above town, where the Incas secured an important victory over the Spanish conquistadors. Inspect the intricately hewn stone constructions and have your guide show you the distant quarries from where the Incas sourced these huge stone blocks. This site also afford fabulous views of the valley and the Urubamba River that meanders through it.
From there, your exclusive tour of Peru will take you to another valley town – Pisac – where you’ll have the chance to rub shoulders with locals as you survey the artisan offerings of the market. Vegetables, textiles and silver jewelry are just some of the items that are sold here.
End the day with one more archaeological site visit, this time to the abandoned mountainside ruins of the original Inca Pisac village (Spanish conquerors built their village further down the hillside). From here, you’ll be able to see the verdant farmland where the Incas once cultivated their crops and where modern-day Quechua people continue to farm. Later, return to the hotel of your choice.
DAY 7: Machu Picchu
Train Journey to Aguas Calientes / Private Visit to Machu Picchu
Set off on a private tour around the renowned ruins of Machu Picchu. Travel by train to Aguas Calientes, before venturing up to the enigmatic ruins. As you wander among the dry-stone walls and examine the exceptionally fine stonework, your guide will explain the hypotheses surrounding the mystery of why the Incas chose to build their citadel in such an extraordinary location.
Break for lunch at the nearby Sanctuary Lodge and then continue exploring either with your guide or independently for the remainder of the day.
DAY 8: Machu Picchu
Free Day to Explore on Your Own
Today is a free day for you to enjoy Machu Picchu on your own. Perhaps follow one of the trails near the site or even attempt the steep ascent up the narrow Huayna Picchu peak. The summit here looks directly across at Machu Picchu. If you do wish to climb Huayna Picchu, you’ll need to decide ahead of time; only 400 people are allowed up here daily and tickets must be purchased in advance.
Come afternoon, settle into a seat on the Vistadome train and watch the Andean landscapes flit by the window as you ride to Cusco. Upon arrival in Cusco, meet your host; they will take you to your lovely hotel.
DAY 9: Cusco
Private Walking Tour of Cusco
Discover the old imperial city of the Incas during a private guided city tour around Cusco’s cobbled lanes and learn about the multifarious cultural influences. See old stone walls, foundations and temple ruins as well as Spanish colonial churches and cathedrals. Revel in the free-spirited atmosphere of the San Blas neighborhood and experience a taste of everyday life at the animated San Pedro market.
After you’ve got a feel for the city’s layout and culture, you are free to explore Cusco on your own for the afternoon.
DAY 10: Over the Altiplano to Titicaca
A Sightseeing Tour by Bus From Cusco to Puno
After a satisfying breakfast at your stylish hotel, settle into your seat for a guided bus tour that will take you from Cusco all the way south to Puno and Lake Titicaca.
We’ll make several stop-offs at various points of interest during the guided bus tour. Disembark first at the tiny town of Andahuaylillas to see its beautiful church, often called the “Sistine Chapel of the Americas.” A relatively unassuming exterior hides a seriously spectacular interior, which features frescoes, gold leaf and an incredibly detailed sculpted wood pulpit.
The next stop on the guided bus tour is the town of Raqchi, where the remnants of an unusual Inca wall designed to hold back invaders from the south, still stand. After a restorative lunch, we’ll pass through La Raya, which – at 14,220 feet – is the highest point on the route. Enjoy the views of the snow-covered Andes and browse the roadside offerings from local artisans.
Finally, delve even further back into Peruvian history at the pre-Inca site of Pukara. Soon after this, the flat golden plains will give way to building-covered hills, which gradually slope into the banks of Lake Titicaca. This is Puno.
The guided bus tour concludes in Puno, where a local host will show you to your stylish hotel for a Lake Titicaca luxury travel experience. Enjoy creature comforts and watch the reflection of the stars twinkling on the water’s surface.
DAY 11: Lake Titicaca Island
Cultural Tour / Uros Island / the Island of Taquile
On day eleven, you’ll step aboard a boat at the harbor and make the short voyage out to the Floating Islands of Uros to visit an ancient community who have lived off the natural resources of the lake for thousands of years. Their man-made islands are produced from woven totora reeds, and the floor requires continual maintenance to keep their homes afloat.
Next, you’ll meet the residents of another island community on Taquile. These islanders welcome visitors to explore their environs and to sit down with them for an authentic home-cooked lunch as well as to see their excellent handcrafted weavings. Later, return to Puno and transfer to your hotel.
DAY 12: Puno to Juliaca to Lima and Home
Today you’ll be transferred to Juliaca airport. Fly from there to Lima, where you’ll be met by your host and brought to the Miraflores district. If you want to see another part of the Peruvian capital, no problem; Kuoda will ensure you have a car at your disposal should you want to visit another neighborhood. Later, we’ll bring you back to Jorge Chavez Airport, where you’ll board your return flight home.
Contact us and start planning your individually customized tour of Peru with Kuoda today.
The Inkaterra Reserva Amazónica Lodge mentioned in this itinerary is one of several jungle lodges in the Tambopata area that we can offer. The exact itinerary will vary depending on the lodge chosen and time of year.