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UNSEEN  PERU - PCT01
Visit: Cusco - Sacred Valley of the Incas - Machu Picchu - Puno - Lake Titicaca

7 days / 6 nights
- Starts on Friday in Cusco


PROGRAM  ITINERARY

 Tour Description:  Upon seeing Machu Picchu for the first time, an astounded Hiram Bingham gasped: How will anyone believe what I've found? This program aims to recreate that feeling of awe and discovery by exposing passengers to new experiences.
 

  

Cusco is the Sacred center of the Andean culture and was the main city during the Spanish Colony. The city is the result of the Inca and Spanish encounter and is considered one of the architectural gems of the world. Here you will find a living past, history captured amidst its walls, temples, and even people. The Incas venerated Cusco as the "navel of the universe", building from here the trails that united their vast Empire. Discover attractions no other city offers as you pass through the streets of this mystical city of extravagant palaces and elegant plazas that shine like new despite the pass of time. The cultural highlight of our Cusco visit will be Misminay, the community that produces all our porters for the Inca trail. A picnic lunch at the community will show us how integrating local people can build sustainable development by tourism.
The highest navigable lake in the world, the Titicaca, is also home to the most ancient living cultures in the Andes. Spending a day living with the people of Taquile, an island within this lake, will open our eyes to a completely different world.

 DAY BY DAY ITINERARY  *

 Day 1 - Friday  CUSCO / City tour and San Blas district
AM
- Our services will begin with your arrival at the airport of Cusco. Our local guide will assist you and provide the transfer to the Casa Andina Catedral Hotel (or similar) where you will check-in. Enjoy the remainder of the morning at leisure, allowing for altitude acclimatization.

Contact us for International airfares to Peru, additional services in Lima and the rest of Peru

PM - In the afternoon you will be picked up by your English speaking guide for a city tour of Cusco and San Blas district. We will visit the Imperial City, living example of the blend between Andean and Spanish cultures. We start our trip visiting the Santo Domingo Convent, built over the Koricancha, an ancient Inca palace and main worship center of the Sun God. Stop at the Main Square, where we find the Cathedral and the beautiful Church of La Compañia. Continuing with the tour, we walk trough a nice Inca & Colonial cobbled stone street, where we find the famous 12 angle stone piece. We continue to the picturesque district of San Blas, home to artists and handicraft masters, whose workshops are located along its steep and winding streets.
 

EVE
- This evening we will enjoy dinner with a folklore show at a typical restaurant. Overnight at the hotel in Cusco.
(D.)

 Day 2 - Saturday  CUSCO - SACRED VALLEY OF THE INCAS / Sacsayhuaman - Maras - Moray - Misminay Community
AM
- After breakfast we depart from the hotel for a morning visit to the nearby Archaeological sites of Cusco, all located north east of the main square where we can observe an impressive sample of Inca architecture, overlooking the city. We will leave the city to visit the archaeological sites of Tambomachay (Temple of Water), Quenqo (underground ceremonial caves) and Sacsayhuaman, the amazing main site of the Inca Empire. For those interested in mysticism, the Sacsayhuaman Complex is an excellent spot to hold meditation sessions. Late in the morning we will drive towards the Sacred Valley of the Incas to visit the salt mines of Maras, still used today the same way they were used during Inca times.

PM -
We continue with a visit to Moray, a concentric circle terraced structure believed to be an agricultural lab. We finish with a picnic lunch at Misminay, a local community that works closely with together with our operator in Peru. The community provides all our porters for the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. Our operator is developing an interesting social program to empower this Andean community. This relationship is proving how tourism flow can be a powerful source of sustainable development, and passengers can see first-hand how this works. Later we arrive at Sonesta Posada del Inca Yucay Hotel (or similar), where we check in for the night.
 
EVE -
Overnight at the hotel in the Sacred Valley.
(B, L, D.)




 Day 3 - Sunday
 SACRED VALLEY OF THE INCAS / - Ollantaytambo Fortress - Pisac market
AM
- This morning we will start with a visit to Ollantaytambo, an attractive town of Inca origin with remarkable channels and stone streets. On its high end rises an impressive ceremonial center, paying cult to water. It was used as a fortress during the Spanish invasion, guarding the access to the inferior part of the valley. Then we head for Pisac with a stop on the way to have a classic view of the Urubamba Valley, with crops dressing the mountains like carpets.
 

PM
- After a hearty lunch, we will arrive to the colorful market of Pisac, where we will have free time to interact with the local craftsmen, or to purchase their hand-made souvenirs.
 

EVE - Overnight at Sonesta Posada del Inca Yucay Hotel (or similar) in the Sacred Valley.
(B, L.)
 
 Day 4 - Monday  MACHU PICCHU - CUSCO / The Lost City of the Incas
AM
- Today we will visit one of the most important energy centers of the world: Machu Picchu - The Lost City of the Incas. We will depart by Orient-Express train, traveling alongside the fast flowing Urubamba River. We will have an amazing view of the Andes becoming the cloud forest, gate to the Amazon rainforest. Upon arrival to Aguas Calientes, our representatives will assist you to board the bus which will take you to the entrance of the citadel.
 

PM
- Buffet lunch at the Machu Picchu Sanctuary Lodge, located at the entrance to the ruins, followed by a guided tour of the ruins of Machu Picchu. No matter how many times you have seen pictures of the Lost City, or how many times you may have visited Machu Picchu before, it will be an unforgettable experience. Your professional tour guide will transmit the history around this mysterious and charming place to us. After the tour there will be free time to explore the site on your own. At the scheduled time, we will go back down to Aguas Calientes station, from where we take the train back to Cusco.
  

EVE - Upon arrival in Cusco transfer to Casa Andina Catedral Hotel (or similar) where we check-in for the night.
(B, L.)
 
 Day 5 - Tuesday  CUSCO - PUNO / Andahuaylillas, Racchi and La Raya
AM
- Today we leave Cusco behind and travel by road to Puno. During our first stop we will visit Andahuaylillas, a town where a precious church from the 17th century boasting an amazing organ decorated with angels and cherubs. Later we will stop at the Racchi archeological site, known as “The Temple of God Wiracocha”. This is probably the tallest adobe brick construction from Inca times. During this part of the trip you can enjoy the wonderful scenery of the South Valley outside Cusco.
 


PM - Lunch will be served in a restaurant en route followed by a stop at Pucara and La Raya, the highest point on the road between Puno and Cuzco, from where we will get excellent photo opportunities. The arrival into Puno will be in the afternoon, when you will be taken to Casa Andina Plaza Hotel (or similar) for check in. Remainder of the afternoon at leisure in the city of Puno.
 

EVE - Overnight at the hotel in Puno.
(B, L.)
 
 Day 6 - Wednesday  LAKE TITICACA / Floating islands of Uros and Taquile
AM
- After breakfast we head out for an excursion to Lake Titicaca and as a first starting point we visit the floating islands of the Uros, also called Lake Town. These islands are built using totora reed and are used as home and trade centers for the natives, who use hand-made boats of the same material as their means of transportation. We will go on to Taquile Island, where the community kindly welcomes tourists, keeping their traditions alive, as well as their costumes and colorful typical dresses; these people are very skilled artisans and they show in every piece of work all the techniques developed over centuries.
 

PM - After lunch we will unpack and unwind here as the night will be spent at the local community of Taquile. Locals have adapted their houses in order to provide comfortable places to stay for visitors, closing the circle of services in sustainable tourism. This will be a great experience spending time with authentic lake dwellers.
 

EVE - Overnight in Taquile island.
(B, L, D.)

 Day 7 - Thursday  PUNO - JULIACA / Sillustani Mausoleum
AM
- At the scheduled time, we will be picked up from the island in order to go to the airport for your flight to Lima or Arequipa. On our way to the airport we will visit Sillustani, an archaeological site located 34 Km. north of Puno. It has the famous Chullpas, which are funerary towers, circular in base, built from polished stone. Some of them are 12 meters high and where used by the Collas and by the Incas. These ruins overlook Lake Umayo, increasing the beauty of this mystic, wonderful place.
(B.)

END OF SERVICES



* IMPORTANT NOTE: The itinerary, as shown, is subject to change without prior notice. Certain circumstances, such as: changing weather conditions, safety concerns and in general any reason or situation beyond our control may force local tour operators and / or their guides to alter any part of this itinerary for the wellbeing and in the best interest of travelers. Changes will only be made if they are absolutely necessary. Our goal is to provide clients with a safe environment and programs that exceed their expectations.


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