Depart London 29 September 2017
Day 1- 30 September- Lima
Arrival, meeting and transfer to your hotel
Overnight at Lima
Day 2: 01 October- Lima, Arequipa
Transfer to Lima airport
Arrival, meeting and transfer to your hotel
City tour/ Santa Catalina Coventa and Junita Mummy Museum
You will begin your tour at the city’s Main Square, upon which sit the most representative buildings in Arequipa. First stop will be the Iglesia de La Compañía de Jesús, a Jesuit church with a lovely Baroque façade and chapel. Inside, there are hundreds of works of art from Peru’s Colonial era. From there, you move on the traditional districts of Carmen Alto and Yanahuara. An interesting landmark there is the lookout point with incredible the arches, which are engraved with words from illustrious Arequipeños (citizens of Arequipa), and from where you get a spectacular view of three volcanoes: Mount Misti, Mount Chachani, and Mount Pichu-Pichu, as well as of the city itself. Next on the itinerary is the Santa Catalina convent, a kind of city within a city. It’s a large complex, 20,426 m2, and included cloisters, charming streets, and small plazas that have never changed over its more than 500 year history. During the tour, you will learn something of what life is like for the select group of nuns living there.
Lastly, you will visit the Andean Sanctuary Museum on the campus of the Santa Maria Catholic University. It displays the mummified remains of Juanita, a.k.a. the Lady of Ampato, who was a teenage Incan girl sacrificed to the Apus. Her body was discovered on Mount Ampato (6288 m) by Johan Reinhard after resting underneath layers of snow for nearly 500 years.
Overnight at Arequipa
Day 3:02 October-Arequia
AREQUIPA / COLCA / PUNO
You will leave early from your hotel to begin the journey through the town of Yura and the National Reserve of Aguada Blanca and Pampa Cañahuas. You will stop in Patahuasi to take a little break and then continue to the village of Chivay where you can lunch in a typical restaurant or in your hotel. In the afternoon, if your hotel is in the area of Chivay or Coporaque you will go to the Calera to enjoy an invigorating dip in the thermal pools, after this you will return to have dinner at the hotel.
Overnight at Colca
Day 4: 03 October- Arequipa, Puno
2D/1N AREQUIPA / COLCA / PUNO
Leave early towards "Cruz Del Condor", the best location to admire the Colca Canyon and the flight of the majestic condors if the weather allows it. Then continue the trip by visiting the native towns of Maca, Yanque and finally to Chivay. Finally you will go to Puno.
Overnight at Puno
Day 5: 04 October-Puno
F/D TaquilE Island + Uros Islands + Lunch (SPEED BOAT)
The trip begins early as you head out of the city of Puno towards Taquile Island, about 35 kilometers away and 3950 meters above sea level. The culture on the island is old, dating back to Pre-Incan times. The islanders still live according to the traditions and beliefs of their ancestors and are world renowned for their lovely outfits and incredible textiles. In fact, UNESCO has declared the textile art of Taquile Island as a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity. Next, while still on the island, you will visit the community of Huayllano, whose members will show you their normal artistic, handicraft, and farming activities. After this time of sharing, you will enjoy a traditional lunch and then sail over to the famous Uros Islands, a set of man-made floating islands in the middle of the Lake Titicaca National Reserve. Here, you will meet the islanders, hunters and gatherers and descendants of the first altiplano inhabitants, who still live on totora reed platforms. At the end of the trip you will be taken back to your hotel.
Overnight at Puno
Day 6: 05 October-Puno, Cusco
PRIVATE CAR TO CUSCO
You will be driven by bus to Cusco, so you can enjoy the wonderful scenery on the way. You will visit Andahuaylillas, a town where a precious church from the 17th century boasts an amazing organ decorated with angels and cherubs. Also visit Racchi ruins, known as "The Temple of God Wiracocha". Stop at La Raya, highest point on the road between Cusco and Puno from where we will get excellent photo opportunities. After this you will arrive to Cusco.
Overnight at Cusco
Day 7: 06 October-Cusco
Day 8: 07 October-Cusco
Day 9: 08 October- Cusco
Day 10: 09 October- Cusco
Overnight at Cusco
Day 11: 10 October-Cusco
Transfer Out to Cusco airport for flight to Puerto Maldonado
Transfer Airport to Puerto Maldonado Headquarters. Upon arrival from Lima or Cusco, we will welcome you at the airport and drive you ten minutes to our Puerto Maldonado headquarters. While enjoying your first taste of the forest in our gardens we will ask you to pack only the necessary gear for your next few days, and leave the rest at our safe deposit. This helps us keep the boats and cargo light.
Puerto Maldonado to Tambopata River Port. Skirting Puerto Maldonado, we drive 20 kilometers to the Tambopata River Port, entering the Native Community of Infierno. The port is a communal business.
Tambopata River Port to Refugio Amazonas. The two and a half hour boat ride from the Tambopata Port to Refugio Amazonas will take us past the Community of Infierno and the Tambopata National Reserve´s checkpoint and into the buffer zone of this 1.3 million hectare conservation unit.
Orientation. Upon arrival, the lodge manager will welcome you and brief you with important navigation and security tips.
Caiman searches. We will be out at the river's edge at night, scanning the shores with headlamps and flashlights to catch the red gleams of reflection from caiman eyes.
Day 12: 11 October: Puerto Maldonado
Sachavacayoc Oxbow Lake: A two hour hike takes you to Sachavacayoc Lake. You will then paddle around the lake in a catamaran, searching for the resident family of five giant river otters (seen by about 30% of lake visitors) and other lakeside wildlife such as caiman, hoatzin and horned screamers. We hike out at dawn - when otters are active. Don't forget the two hour return hike! For those who do not want to take the long hike Condenado Lake, thirty minutes from the lodge, is an option.
Farm Visit and Ethnobotanical Garden: Five minutes downriver from the lodge lies a farm owned and managed by charismatic Don Manuel from the neighbouring community of Condenado. He grows a variety of popular and unknown Amazon crops - just about every plant and tree you see serves a purpose. He has also identified and cultivated many of the medicinal plants used in the region in a little backyard garden.
Brazil nut trail and camp: A few minutes hike from the lodge is a beautiful old growth patch of Brazil Nut forest that has been harvested for decades (if not centuries) where the precarious remains of a camp used two months a year by Brazil Nut gatherers can still be experienced. We will be demonstrating the whole process of the rain forest's only sustainably harvested product from collection through transportation to drying.
Night walk. You will have the option of hiking out at night, when most of the mammals are active but rarely seen. Much easier to find are frogs with shapes and sounds as bizarre as their natural histories.
Parakeet clay lick: A fifteen minute boat ride and sixty minute walk from Refugio Amazonas is a parakeet clay lick. From a blind you will see parakeets descend on most clear days to ingest the clay on a bank. Species such as Dusky headed and Cobalt winged Parakeet descend at this clay lick. We visit the lick at dawn, when parrots are most active or in midmorning or early afternoon, when they are active.
Mammal clay lick: Twenty minutes walking from Refugio Amazonas is a peccary clay lick. These wild rain forest pigs show up in herds of five to twenty individuals to eat clay in the late morning. Chances of spotting them are around 15%, but well worth the short hike. Other wildlife also shows up including deer, guan and parakeets.
Canopy tower: A thirty minute walk from Refugio Amazonas leads to the 25 meter scaffolding canopy tower. A bannistered staircase running through the middle provides safe access to the platforms above. The tower has been built upon high ground, therefore increasing your horizon of the continuous primary forest extending out towards the Tambopata National Reserve. From here views of mixed species canopy flocks as well as toucans, macaws and raptors are likely.
Tambopata National Reserve Lecture. Nightly lectures prepared by the staff of Refugio Amazonas cover conservation threats, opportunities and projects in the Tambopata National Reserve.
Day 13: 12 October -Puerto Maldonado
Transfer Boat - Refugio Amazonas to Tambopata River Port.
Transfer Tambopata River Port to Pto Maldonado Headquarters.
Transfer Pto Maldonado Headquarters - Airport. We retrace our river and road journey back to Puerto Maldonado, our office and the airport. Depending on airline schedules, this may require dawn departures.
Boat Transportation. All boats are 20 foot long, roofed canoes with 55 hp outboard motors. Daily arrivals and departures from every port are scheduled to meet every airline´s arrival and departure with a maximum two hour wait.
Day 14: 13 October- DEPART Lima, Puerto Maldonado
Transfer to airport for your flight to Lima and connect with international flight
All services, lodging,(in good three star or equivalent) food, and beverages mentioned in the trip description, plus taxes, tourist tickets, and entrance fees. All excursions come with a guide in English language. Prices include entrance fees and tourist ticket costs to determined historical, natural, or religious landmarks that are managed by the local authorities in many cases.
The price of the above tour is £[masked] and does not include flights, please see above for required flights. As this trip includes the Inca Trail and permits are limited, early booking is essential. We cannot guarantee spaces for the Inca trail for last minute bookings . ***Please do not book you flights until we have at least 5 people paid deposits*** (single supplement £350.00) All trips are ATOL or TTA protected, so you total financial peace of mind. Would recommend all deposits are paid by 01 January to secure a place as this trip will be very popular.A non refundable deposit of £260.00 via paypal or £250.00 with bank transfer will secure you a place. Travel Insurance is not included and is mandatory. Please ensure you have 6 months validity on your passport and at least 2 blank pages .
By paying a deposit you will be agreeing to the following cancellation policies:
Refunds are not offered for this Meetup.