Cusco - Machu Picchu - Lima
Today, you will be welcomed by a representative from Andean Exclusive Tours at the Cusco airport, who will provide support throughout your trip and introduce you to your driver and guide. We will then head to Pisac in the Sacred Valley of the Incas, making some stops along the way.
On our way to Pisac, we will make a stop at the Awanacancha alpaca ranch, where we can see llamas, alpacas, and vicuñas of different breeds and sizes. We will learn about their use in textile garments and a bit of the history behind their fine and delicate wool.
Upon reaching the town of Pisac, we can visit and explore a craft market, fresh produce, and the customs of the town. Then, we will head to the Pisac archaeological center, where we can witness Inca masonry and the impressive terraces surrounding the mountain. Here, we will also have a stunning top view of the Sacred Valley of the Incas. The entire visit will be guided by our assigned professional guide.
Embark on a guided journey to explore Ollantaytambo town and its remarkable ruins. Ollantaytambo stands out for preserving its original Inca layout, with locals residing in traditional cancha enclosures once occupied by Inca nobility. The archaeological complex in this area is a spectacular sight with immense historical importance. It was the site of a significant battle during the Conquest, where the Incas emerged victorious against the Spaniards.
In the afternoon, your adventure continues with a visit to Maras, home to the extraordinary Salt Mines, situated in the heart of the Sacred Valley near Urubamba. These terraces gather salt through evaporation from saline waters that flow from an underground stream. Constructed much like agricultural terraces commonly found in the Andes, the Salinas have been in operation since pre-Columbian times. The glistening, salt-covered terraces create a visually stunning spectacle. Nearby, you'll encounter the mysterious Inca terraces of Moray, believed to have been used for agricultural experimentation, featuring enormous circular terraced depressions.
Following these visits, you'll be transferred back to your hotel.
Start your day with a transfer from your hotel to the Ollantaytambo train station in a private vehicle. The scenic journey from Ollantaytambo to Aguas Calientes by train offers spectacular panoramic views through its large windows. This mid-range PeruRail option includes five cars, ensuring both comfort and quality, along with snacks and soft drinks. The approximately 1.5-hour ride captivates guests with the ever-changing, impressive scenery, offering ample opportunities for stunning photos. Hand luggage with a maximum weight of 5 kg (11 pounds) and a maximum size of 157 cm (62 inches) is allowed for this service. Larger suitcases can be stored at your hotel until your return from Machu Picchu.
Explore the magnificence of Machu Picchu with a guided tour led by an expert guide. This 'lost city of the Incas' is a marvel of human achievement and symbolizes the ingenuity and prosperity of the pre-Columbian Inca Empire. Perched atop a mountain at 2,430 meters (7,972 feet) above sea level, the site was hidden for centuries until its discovery a century ago by Yale archaeologist Hiram Bingham and the National Geographic Society. Your guided tour will provide insight into the history and significance of the ruins while you enjoy panoramic views. After your visit, take a bus back to the town of Aguas Calientes to catch your train back to Cusco.
The Vistadome train, known for its panoramic windows, offers stunning views during the journey from Aguas Calientes to Poroy. This mid-range PeruRail service provides both comfort and quality, along with snacks and soft drinks. The approximately 3-hour and 15-minute ride immerses you in a changing, breathtaking environment, allowing for memorable photos. Hand luggage with a maximum weight of 5 kg (11 pounds) and a maximum size of 157 cm (62 inches) is allowed.
Upon arrival at Poroy train station, an Andean Exclusive representative will greet you and transfer you to your Cusco hotel, located approximately 20 minutes away.
Cusco is one of the most beautiful cities in Peru, steeped in history and culture. It is considered the navel of the world and was the capital of the Inca Empire of Tahuantinsuyo. The Tahuantinsuyo Empire covered an area of 2,500,000 square kilometers across the lands that now belong to Peru, Bolivia, Chile, Ecuador, Argentina, and Colombia.
The tour begins with hotel pickup, first visiting the main cathedral of Cusco and the Temple of Qoricancha, also known as "The Temple of the Sun". You will also have the opportunity to stroll through the streets of Cusco and visit the San Pedro Market, which is the most popular market in the city of Cusco. Finally, we will visit the fortress of Sacsayhuaman, an impressive construction located just outside the city of Cusco.
On the way out from Cusco, a representative will pick you up from your hotel 2 hours and 15 minutes earlier to your flight and take you to the airport. The representative has already your boarding pass to get inside the airport and would help you with check-in process and be there if you need something in the counter. Then will escort you to the entrance of departures launge to say goodbye.
Lima is the capital of Peru, founded on January 8, 1535. This date coincides with 'The Descent of the Three Wise Men,' and that is why Francisco Pizarro, its founder, christened it as 'the City of Kings.' Lima saw the presence of several pre-Inca civilizations, such as the Lima culture, which constructed the Huaca Pucllana. Another archaeological site is the Huaca Huallamarca.
The Larco Museum contains approximately 5,000 years of ancient Peruvian history, and your guide will summarize it in simple words for you to understand this complex history. The complex is surrounded by beautiful gardens and is located in an 18th-century viceregal mansion. It was one of the first museums in the world to have visitable storage facilities and to provide virtual access to 100% of its collection, thus promoting the multidisciplinary research that Rafael Larco Hoyle initiated from the very beginning.
Then we will continue our visit to the city center of Lima, where we can visit places such as the Cathedral, the Santo Domingo Convent, the Main Square, the Aliaga House, and neocolonial-style buildings. The entire program is subject to your interest within the 8-hour duration of the tour.
A representative will be expecting you from your domestic flight with a sign bearing your name. He will assist you with all check-in procedures and escort you to the departure area to catch the international flight.