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Peru on a Shoestring

  • 15 Day(s)
  • Trip Code : GASPPS

Climb the legendary Inca Trail to the cloud forest citadel of Machu Picchu, dine the traditional way at a ceremonial Pachamanca feast, or take an optional flight over the Nazca Lines- Climb the legendary Inca Trail to the cloud forest citadel of Machu Picchu, dine the traditional way at a ceremonial Pachamanca feast, or take an optional flight over the Nazca Lines-

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Day 1 Lima

Arrive at any time.

Arrive in Lima at any time. There are no planned activities, so check into the hotel (check-in time is approx 3pm) and enjoy the city. In the late afternoon (approx 5pm) you will meet your fellow group members to go over the details of your trip. Check the notice board (or ask reception) to see the exact time and location of this group meeting. After the meeting we will be heading out for a meal in a nearby local restaurant (optional). If you arrive late, no worries, the leader will leave you a message at the front desk. Known as the City of Kings, Peru-

Day 2-3 Nazca (2B,1D)

Indulge in a traditional Pachamanca meal. Try numerous optional activities, such as a tour of a pre-Inca desert cemetery with mummies, a flight over the Nazca Lines or sandboarding. Overnight bus to Arequipa.

Head south to Nazca, home to one of the world's greatest archaeological mysteries: the Nazca Lines. The lines consist of patterns and pictures etched in the ground, crisscrossing a wide area of flat desert. Some of the lines measure up to 10km (6 miles) in length, and yet remain perfectly straight. The depictions of birds, insects and animals are only recognizable from the air. Who drew the lines, and why, is something modern archaeologists can only theorize about, but current beliefs suggest that they may be part of a complex agricultural calendar. From the ground we can make out very little, and the best view is from a light aircraft, which can easily be arranged. It is also possible to visit a pre-Inca cemetery where well-preserved mummies can be seen in their original place of burial along with their belongings that they took with them for their next life. In the evening we assist in the preparation of a thousand year-old tradition: a "Pachamanca", an ancient ceremony akin to the Polynesian meal of burying a variety of delicious treats wrapped in banana leaves and slow-cooking them with pre-heated rocks buried in the ground. Board a nightbus bound for Arequipa on the night of day 3.

Day 4-6 Arequipa/Colca Canyon (3B)

Wander the streets of the 'white city' and opt to visit the Catalina Convent. Enjoy an overnight guided tour to spot condors in Colca Canyon, then return to Arequipa to catch an overnight bus to Cusco.


Day 7 Cusco (1B)

Enjoy a free day in Cusco to explore. Opt to go mountain biking, whitewater rafting, or just relax in a café.

We have a full day to explore Cusco, the continent-

Day 8 Ccacaccollo Community (1B,1D)

Visit a local community and a Planeterra-supported weaving project. Learn a few Quechua words while experiencing a family homestay.

Travel by bus to the community and weaving project of Ccacaccollo. Overnight in a family homestay.

Day 9 Ollantaytambo (1B)

Embark on an optional Sacred Valley tour with Incan historical sites and ruins. Visit markets filled with art and jewelry crafted by the locals.

Travel through the stunning Sacred Valley of the Incas. Opt to take a Sacred Valley tour and visit a Planeterra-supported women's weaving co-op, the impressive Pisac ruins, the colourful artisan market (market days only) and the large ruin site of Ollantaytambo that lies adjacent to the town of the same name where we catch our breath and prepare for the hike ahead. Planeterra has been working with the Ccaccaccollo community since 2005 to develop a viable economic alternative for women by creating a weaving cooperative to sell traditional textiles to travellers. Donations by travelers have helped build a community centre supplied with looms and sewing machines for the women to use to expand their production. This project allows the women of the Ccaccaccollo community to maintain their cultural heritage and benefit from the tourism industry. Ollantaytambo is your first taste of what lies ahead on the Inca Trail. The town and fortress of Ollantaytambo are strategically situated overlooking the beautiful Urubamba River Valley. This major ruin site is known as the best surviving example of Inca urban planning and engineering. It is admired for its huge steep terraces guarding the Inca Fortress, as well as for being one of the few places where the Spanish lost a major battle during the conquest. We spend the night in this small town before heading out for the start of the hike the next morning.

Day 10-13 Inca Trail/Machu Picchu (4B,3L,3D)

Take in Incan culture, history, and great views on a 4-day guided Inca Trail hike with visit a to Machu Picchu. Enjoy Planeterra-supported handmade biodegradable soap products while on the Inca Trail.

The 4-day Inca Trail to Machu Picchu is physically challenging but worthwhile, and the excursion is within the ability of most reasonably fit people. It is a 44km (27 mile) hike, with three high passes to be crossed, one of which reaches an elevation of 4200m (13,776 ft). The trail is often steep, and it may rain even during the dry season. The temperatures at night may fall below freezing, so it is important to come prepared. NOTE: We offer two alternatives to hiking the Inca Trail. If Inca Trail permits are sold out, travellers will be given the option to hike the Lares Trek (details below). Travellers not able to hike or not interested in hiking, can opt to spend two extra days in Cusco (details below) before travelling to Machu Picchu. If you do not want to hike, we need to know at the time of booking in order to obtain train tickets. Once Inca Trail permits are confirmed there will be fee for any changes made. The fee may vary depending on the changes that are made to your itinerary. Please advise your agent or G Adventures. Also note the Inca Trail is closed for general maintenance every February for the entire month. Travellers will be hiking the Lares Trek during this time. Other closures to either trek may occur at anytime throughout the year due to inclement weather or other conditions beyond our control. In these instances, itineraries will be reworked to provide the best and safest possible experience. INCA TRAIL DETAILS Day 1 of the Inca Trail: Depart Ollantaytambo by van to km 82 where the hike begins. This takes about 40 mins. Our crew of local porters, cooks and guides will take care of all the details for the duration of the hike. Porters carry the majority of the gear so you-

Day 14 Cusco (1B)

Free time to explore Cusco and surroundings. Take an optional city tour and be sure to experience the nightlife.

Cusco is considered the mecca of Peru and rightly so. This beautiful colonial town offers nearby ruins, cobblestone streets, museums, churches and a lively atmosphere. The more adventurous optional activities available in Cusco include horseback riding around archaeological sites such as Sacsayhuaman, Tambo Machay and Puca Pucara; white water rafting on the Urubamba River; and mountain biking down to the Sacred Valley, perhaps visiting an Inca ruin along the way. Please note that if you booked the Adrenaline Theme Pack you will be picked up from your hotel at approx 9:00 and transferred to the ranch for horseback riding. You will ride to a few archaeological sites and enjoy the countryside of Cusco. You will return back to your hotel around 13:00.

Day 15 Cusco (1B)

Depart at any time.

Depart at any time.

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You will visit

  • Peru

Is this for me?

  • Trip Style: Small Group Adventures, 18-35s
  • Comfort Level: Basic
  • Physical Demands: You might encounter a few high-altitude hikes or other more strenuous activities. Pro tip: Put down that pastry, buster.

What's included?

  • Pachamanca ceremony (Nazca). Overnight Colca Canyon excursion. 4-day Inca Trail hike with local guide, cook and porters. Guided tour of Machu Picchu. Planeterra-supported handmade biodegradable soap products for use on the Inca Trail. Homestay experience and visit to a Planeterra-supported women’s weaving project (Ccacaccollo). All transport between destinations and to/from included activities.
  • Max 18, avg 14.
  • 14 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 5 dinners.

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