Trails to Titicaca
Day 1: Lima
Welcome to Peru and the start of your holiday. Upon arriving to your hotel the afternoon offers free time. This evening a group welcome meeting will be held. Overnight - Lima
Days 2 - 4: Amazon Jungle
Lima – Amazon Jungle – Cuzco. A short flight takes us to the jungle community of Puerto Maldonado, the starting point for our journey into the Amazon. From here a bus followed by a motorised canoe ride downriver brings us to our jungle lodge. During our time in the rainforest we’ll visit Monkey Island, renowned for its great variety of monkey species, as well as birdlife. Trekking through dense jungle and marshland, our guide will point out the various species of bird and plant found in the forest. There will be the chance to take a canoe ride along one of the small lakes hidden away in the jungle. Keep your eyes peeled for caiman and, if you’re lucky, the rare giant otter. Later enjoy the view of the lake and the canopy wildlife from a viewing platform. Spend an afternoon at the Gamitana River where you can try your hand at fishing or simply take a dip.
We head back to Puerto Maldonado for our return flight to Cuzco where the rest of the day is free to explore this fascinating ancient capital. Overnight - Amazon Jungle (2), Cuzco (1) (B:2, L:2, D:2)
Days 5 - 9: Inca Trail & Machu Picchu
Cuzco – Inca Trail Trek (or free time in Cuzco) – Cuzco. A full day is spent visiting the Sacred Valley of the Incas, including the Pisac ruins, a traditional Indian market and the temple fortress of Ollantaytambo with its enormous Inca terracing constructed on the side of a steep mountain. For those who have chosen to hike the Inca Trail Trek, a short bus ride will take us to our starting point where we begin a once in a lifetime journey on the ancient trail of the Incas.
Day 2 includes the highest point of the trail and reaches 4200m in height. This is physically the most demanding point but rewards you with spectacular views. Fascinating ruins and dramatic mountain scenery fill every day of the hike and on the final day of the trek you will have free time in Machu Picchu. Take the chance to relieve your tired body in the hot springs of Aguas Calientes before returning to Cuzco by train.
If you are not participating in the trek then you will visit Machu Picchu by train and have plenty of free time to enjoy the activities available in and around Cuzco. Overnight - Ollantaytambo (1), Inca Trail Trek (3), Cuzco (1) (B:3, L:3, D:3)
Day 10: Cuzco
Make the most of your free time here exploring amazing churches, colonial buildings and picturesque streets, many of which have Inca walls, arches and doorways. Optional excursions such as white water rafting, horse riding, mountain biking and canoeing are also on offer. Overnight - Cuzco
Days 11 - 13: Lake Titicaca and Taquile Island
Cuzco – Puno – Lake Titicaca – Puno - La Paz. Passing hot mineral pools, snow capped mountains and traditional Native Indian villages where locals sell their wares, we leave Cuzco and head to the shores of Lake Titicaca.
Arriving at the compact town of Puno we'll see its thriving markets filled with women donning the traditional costume of bowler hats and many layered skirts. We'll also learn about the culture of the Uros people with a boat visit to the floating reed islands. We continue by boat to the island of Amantani where we’ll enjoy the hospitality of native Aymara/Quechua families and stay in their homes. The next morning we visit Taquile Island where you can buy unique handicrafts at the local cooperative shops. Overnight - Puno (1), Lake Titicaca (1), Puno (1) (B:1, L:1, D:1)
Day 14: Puno to La Paz
Puno - La Paz or Lima. As we continue our journey we have breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains as the road winds its way into La Paz, the highest capital city in the world at 3,636 metres. Built on a series of hills and considered one of the world's most beautiful cities, La Paz was established in the basin of a canyon with the snow-capped Mount Illimani in the background. Our hotel is very centrally located and is just around the corner from the city's colourful Indian street markets including the fascinating and suitably named 'witches market' where bowler hat wearing women in their flared skirts sell such items as dead cats and llamas foetuses said to ward off evil spirits. The main square, Plaza Murillo, is also within walking distance. The square still retains its colonial buildings including the Presidential Palace. La Paz is possibly the best place to experience a traditional pena show of Andean music and dance where local bands play time -honoured instruments such as zamponas (pipes) and charangos (ukulele). There are also many optional excursions available. You might like to visit the Moon Valley with its stange rock formations shaped by the weather ortake in the incredible views from Mount Chacaltaya and the world's highest ski resort at 5,221 metres. Another fantastic excursion is to the emerald green area of Coroico, the gateway to the Bolivian jungle region and a great place to see sub -tropical vegetation and plants. En route you will cross a 5,000 metre high pass before descending to 1,300 metres on narrow mountain roads bordered by sheer drops. The excursion to Coroico can also be done by mountain bike, as it is downhill nearly all the way and very exhilarating, but not for the faint hearted!
If you have chosen to end your tour in Lima, our representative will meet you this morning and transfer you to Juliaca airport for your flight to Lima. Here you will be met by another of our representatives who will transfer you to our hotel for one more night. Your tour will conclude tomorrow. Happy Travels! Overnight - La Paz
Day 15: La Paz
Your adventure of a lifetime comes to an end today, please confirm with the reception the check out time. If you have a late flight or have lengthened your stay by adding post tour accommodation you will have more time to explore the sights.
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