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Discover Cuzco, Machu Picchu and the Sacred Valley

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  • SOUTHERN PERU – 10 days / 9 nights

    Day 1

    We will be met upon arrival at Jorge Chavez international Airport in Lima, Peru’s capital city.  From there, we will be transferred to our hotel.  After checking-in and some time to refresh after our long flight, we will be taken to a local restaurant, for our evening meal.

    Accommodation: Antigua Miraflores – Traditional Room (D)

    Day 2

    Today we visit Pachacamac, a fascinating archaeological site located just outside Lima.  The complex has an interesting history, having been built and ruled by many different leaders throughout that time.  The complex consists of many clay structures and is considered to have been a religious complex.

    This interesting site and tour will give us a chance to learn more about the inca and pre-inca cultures.  There are further excavations taking place, which reveal evidence of Moche and Huari inhabitaion, during the period between 200 and 800 a.d.

    After the visit we’ll return to our hotel in Lima and enjoy the rest of the day at leisure.

    Accommodation: Antigua Miraflores – Traditional Room (B)

    Day 3

    The morning will offer the opportunity to explore the colonial centre of Lima.  After breakfast, we will be taken to explore the old city and experience its unique charms.  Starting at the Plaza de Armas, you will be able to see the main government and religious buildings of the former capital of Spanish America.  This is a UNESCO world heritage site and features well preserved colonial architecture, including the President’s Palace, the Cathedral and the Municipalidad, (City Hall).  We will continue to the nearby San Francisco Church, where fine examples of religious art can be seen.  San Francisco also has the Catacombs museum, where remains of those who fell to the Spanish inquisition can be seen.  At the end of the visit to Colonial Lima, we will be taken to the residential Pueblo Libre district.

    Lunch will be taken at the Café Museo Restaurant.

    After lunch, visit the Larco Herrera Museum, an eighteenth-century Viceregal mansion that houses more than 3,000 years of Peru's pre-Columbian history. The museum boasts a supremely fine collection of gold and silver jewelry and worship paraphernalia that demonstrates the superb skill of ancient Peruvian gold and silversmiths. The Larco Herrera also contains a famous collection of erotic ceramic tomb art that gives insights into various aspects of pre-Columbian sexuality.

    After our visit, we shall be transferred to the airport, for a late afternoon flight to Cuzco (FLIGHT NOT INCLUDED).

    Upon arrival in Cuzco, we shall be met and transferred to our hotel.

    Accommodation: San Agustin Plaza – Standard Room (B/L)

    Day 4

    This morning, we will have the opportunity to visit Sacsayhuaman, which is a huge structure formed of enourmous pieces of rock, which have been carved and fitted together with amazing precision.  We return to Cuzco and continue with a tour of this amazing city, where the architecture of the inca and colonial settlers combine wonderfully.  One of the most striking examples of this can be found at Korikancha, (the Golden Temple). To end the tour, we visit the main square of Cuzco, which is dominated by its Cathedral.

    During the tour, we will stop at a local restaurant, where we shall have a cooking demonstration, allowing us an insight in to Peru’s famous cuisine.

    Return to the hotel at the end of this day’s activities and enjoy the rest of the day at your own leisure.

    Accommodation: San Agustin Plaza – Standard Room (B/L)

    Day 5

    This morning, we leave Cuzco and continue on, in to the Sacred Valley – a patchwork of cultivated fields and small villages lay between Cuzco and Peru’s most famous site of all, Machu Picchu.

    We will be provided with a few guidelines for our stay in the Sacred Valley, before we embark, away from Cuzco and descending down toward Pisac, a short distance from Cuzco.  Pisac is a traditional market town, where there are some interesting Inca remains.  The large plaza is home to a market, where local people gather to sell their produce and handicrafts.  We will have the chance to meet some local people, who will tell us about the traditional techniques, which have been passed from generation to generation, that are still used to produce the traditional textiles which we can see today.

    We continue to Ollantaytambo, which is perhaps the last remaining of the Inca towns.  Ollantaytambo is noted for a huge fortress which guarded it from potential invasion.  We conclude the day’s activities with a visit to the archaeological complex, which used to serve as a stopping off point for royal delegates, embarking on long journeys.  There are some well-constructed walls and towers which survive until this day.

    We finish at our hotel in the Sacred Valley, where we shall stay for the next two nights.

    Accommodation: San Agustin Recoleta – Standard Room (B)

    Day 6

    We begin the day with a visit to Chinchero, which is in the Anta highlands.  We will be able to see a number of inca archeaological sites, as well as a colonial church.  Chinchero is most noted for its colourful market.  This is an opportunity for us to stock-up on some typical souvenirs and practice our bartering skills.

    After Chinchero, we continue across the Urubamba River and head towards Maras, where we find some Salt Pans, which are still in use today.  The sight of this still-operating salt mine, in use since Incan times, will amaze you the stark white of the steeply descending salt pans juxtaposed against the green of the surrounding mountain slopes.

    Lunch will be taken in a local restaurant.

    We continue on to Moray, where huge circular agricultural terraces were built by the Inca on limestone sinks served to plant various crops. It is said to have a cosmological significance, however, the Inca used the terraces as an agricultural laboratory to determine the optimum conditions for each species in varying altitudes.

    After our visit, we return to our hotel.

    Accommodation: San Agustin Recoleta – Standard Room (B/L)

    Day 7

    (Please note: Owing to luggage restrictions on board trains to and from Aguas Calientes, you will only be permitted to take an overnight bag with you.  The bulk of your baggage will be taken back to Cuzco, where it will be safely stored, until we return tomorrow).

    Begin the day with a transfer to Ollanta Station for our train journey to Aguas Calientes, at the foot of Machu Picchu.  Upon arrival, we’ll check in to our accommodation for our overnight stay. Machu Picchu is undoubtedly the highlight for most visitors to Peru.  After settling in to our accommodation, we will take the shuttle bus, which zig-zags up to Machu Picchu (approximately 25 minutes).  Don’t forget to bring your passport.

    We will be given a comprehensive guided tour ot the site, before we have the opportunity to continue our visit with independent exploration, after many of the hoards of tourists have left. 

    After the visit, return to Aguas Calientes and enjoy the rest of the day at your own leisure.  Aguas Calientes is noted for its thermal springs, as well as having numerous bars and restaurants.  There is also a tourist market, but be prepared to pay more for any goods here, than you would at other places which we have visited.

    Accommodation: El Mapi Hotel - Standard Room (B/L)

    Day 8

    We have a second entrance to Machu Picchu included.  This is a great opportunity to visit the site in the early morning, before the crowds arrive from Cuzco.  Take your time to enjoy this magnificent site at your own leisure.  For the more energetice, there’s the climb to the top of Huayna Picchu, the famous mound that lays behind the main site.  Entrance to Huayna Picchu is stricly limited, so those wishing to attempt the climb should get to the entrance as early as possible.

    In the afternoon, we return to Cuzco, firstly by train to Ollanta, where we will be met and taken back to Cuzco.

    Accommodation: San Agustin Plaza – Standard Room (B)

    Day 9

    Today can be spent entirely at your own leisure.  Cuzco is a fascinating city with much to engage the visitor.  Retrace our steps from our visit of some days ago, explore the artisan shops and markets, or even enjoy a drink in one of the many bars and restaurants.  There are also a number of optional excursions which can be arranged locally.

    Accommodation: San Agustin Plaza – Standard Room (B)

    Day 10

    This morning we shall be transferred to the Airport in Cuzco, in time for our return flight to Lima (NOT INCLUDED).  Please don’t arrange your international flight too early, to allow time to connect. (B)

    Price per person based on two sharing and 8 passengers travelling: £[masked]

    Single supplement: £545.00

    Tour includes

    English Speaking guides Meals as stated in itinerary Tours and transfers as mentioned in private service Entrance fees to all sites visited during the tours mentioned in the itinerary Bottled water and tissues in all transfers and excursions

    Not included

    Airport taxes International and Domestic air tickets Meals or tours not stated in the itinerary Personal medical or travel insurance Tips & gratuities to guides and drivers Entrance to Korikancha Cathedral 

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