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Classic Peru

  • Lima
  • Sacred Valley
  • Machu Picchu
  • Cusco
  • Lake Titicaca
  • Colca Canyon
  • Arequipa
Classic Peru Classic Peru
£ 5194

A land of rare physical beauty and cultural diversity, this itinerary will take you through Peru’s stunning mountain landscapes to uncover the extraordinary relics of the Inca Empire.

The most notable of which is the legendary citadel of Machu Picchu, whose mountain-top ruins are spectacularly framed by the jagged peaks of the Andes. You’ll also find yourself delving into the Inca heritage of the Sacred Valley, browsing the artisan market of Pisac and meeting the locals of floating reed islands in Lake Titicaca.

Not forgetting visits to Cusco and Lima, two alluring cities whose superbly-preserved colonial architecture boast World Heritage status. Here you’ll stay in hotels that have been created from, or stand at the centre of, original historic buildings.

Your time in Peru ends with two of the country's southern highlights, the vast Colca Canyon and the picturesque Andean city of Arequipa, before returning home.

16 days from
per person
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Day 1-2 Lima
Lima

Board a day flight from the UK to Lima, the Peruvian capital.

Note: British Airways currently have a direct flight between London Gatwick and Lima on a Wednesday, Friday and Sunday, operating between April and October. There are also connecting flights with Iberia & LATAM via Madrid (which can also be overnight), KLM via Amsterdam and Air France via Paris.

Arrive into Lima, the City of Kings, in the early evening. You’ll be met and taken to your hotel, an original colonial-style building, at the heart of Lima’s most happening district – so you’ll be able to throw yourself into the city’s energetic nightlife as well as its cultural and artistic scene.

Take a half day city tour and you’ll discover a splendid collection of baroque churches, impressive colonial architecture and internationally renowned museums. Your tour includes the Church of San Francisco as well as Casa Aliaga – an exquisitely preserved colonial mansion occupied by the same family for six centuries.

Stay: Two nights at Villa Barranco – bed & breakfast

Day 3-5 The Sacred Valley of the Incas
The Sacred Valley of the Incas

After breakfast on day three you will be driven back to Lima airport and board a direct flight to the Inca capital of Cusco. 

Note: Cusco is over 3,300m above sea-level, so rather than staying here on arrival, we suggest our clients stay and acclimatise in the Sacred Valley which is slightly lower at 2,800m.

Time to explore the heartland of the Inca Empire. Lined by the vertical slopes of the Andes, and criss-crossed by the lazy waters of the Urubamba River, the Sacred Valley was a region of great importance to the Incas and many of their structures still stand today.

Expert guides will take you on full day private tours of the region, giving you a superb insight into the natural history of the Andean region, as well as the civilisation of the Incas. You’ll visit the colourful market towns of Pisac and Chinchero, the salt pans of Maras, the mighty fortress of Ollantaytambo and the huge agricultural terraces of Moray – used by the Inca’s as a botanical laboratory.

You will be staying at a hacienda-style hotel set in 100 acres of lush countryside and enclosed by towering green mountains. 

Stay: Three nights at Inkaterra Hacienda Urubamba – bed & breakfast

Day 6 Machu Picchu
Machu Picchu

Today you’ll take the Vistadome train to the most magnificent Inca site of all. Hidden away in the jungle, the mighty Machu Picchu is one of the few Inca sites to have escaped 400 years of looting and destruction. Many of the old stairways, tiered terraces, temples and water features have remained wonderfully intact, and are a joy to explore both on your own or with an expert guide.

Stay: One night at the Inkaterra Machu Picchu Hotel – half board

Day 7-8 Cusco
Cusco

On day seven there is the option of returning to Machu Picchu in the morning (additional cost) before you taking the train back to Cusco. 

You will travel – via Vistadome train – to Cusco to experience the life and heritage of this ancient city. You’ll be staying in a boutique hotel set in a 16th century mansion, the perfect base for guided tours of sites like the Colonial Santo Domingo Convent – built over the original Inca Koricancha Temple – as well as the Plaza de Armas and the monumental cathedral.

You’ll also be taken on a tour of the fabulous Inca ruins that stand beyond Cusco; including the atmospheric temple and amphitheatre of Kenko, the magnificent Red Fortress of Puca Pucara and the ancient cultural centre of Sacsayhuman.

Stay: Two nights at Inkaterra La Casona – bed & breakfast

Day 9-10 Lake Titicaca
Lake Titicaca

On day nine of your holiday you will board the train to Lake Titicaca, a long but scenic journey filled with picturesque landscapes. Relax in the open-air observatory car and watch as lush green fields, winding rivers and remote villages roll by. You will disembark in the city of Puno, which sprawls along the banks of the lake, and be taken to your hotel.

Note: The Titicaca train between Cusco and Lake Titicaca takes around ten hours and only operates on certain days of the week.

Straddling Peru’s southern border with Bolivia, Lake Titicaca is the highest navigable lake in the world. The region is home to the Aymara and Quechua Indians who pre-date the Incas by over 1,000 years. During your stay you can take birdwatching tours, go on trekking expeditions and try horse riding. Don’t miss the remarkable Inca funeral towers of Sillustani, or boat excursions to the lake’s enchanting floating islands.

Stay: Two nights at Casa Andina Private Collection – bed & breakfast

Day 11-12 Colca Canyon
Colca Canyon

You will leave the shores of Lake Titicaca on day eleven and be driven into the vast and remote Colca Canyon, a journey of around six hours.

The Colca Canyon is one of the deepest canyons on Earth and is home to the giant Andean Condor. It has a huge number of trails to explore, remote villages and Inca terraces. Over the next few days you will have chance to relax in the beautiful scenery and also be taken on a guided tour to the ‘Cruz del Condor’ – an area known for spotting condors.

Your hotel is inside the canyon, on the banks of the Colca river and has breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside.

Stay: Two nights at the Colca Lodge – half-board

Day 13-14 Arequipa
Arequipa

You will be driven from the Colca Canyon to the beautiful colonial city of Arequipa on day thirteen, a journey of around four hours. 

Set in a stunning valley at the foot of the snow-capped El Misti Volcano, Arequipa is the perfect spot to end your time in Peru.

This Aymara Indian and Inca settlement became a colonial city in 1540, and your guided tour will reveal a wealth of fine Spanish buildings and Baroque churches including the Santa Catalina convent which was built in 1579. Keep your camera at the ready – there will be fantastic views of Mount Misti, Mount Chachani and Mount Picchu-Picchu to snap.

Stay: Two nights at the Casa Andina Premium Arequipa – bed & breakfast

Day 15-16 Overnight flight from Arequipa to the UK

After breakfast on day fifteen you will be driven to Arequipa airport for your flight to Lima, where you will connect onto your overnight international flight home.

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