Your day-by-day itinerary
Markets & Plazas of Lima
A proud Latino city, often cloaked in mist from the Pacific Ocean and with a famed food scene, Lima fizzes with energy and is more than just a handy starting point for your holiday. You’ll spend 2 nights in a cosy hotel in a pleasant part of town, and you’ll be shown around the lively Miraflores food market and the charming colonial centre by your local Limeño guide, before setting off to explore the city independently.
Coastal Road to Nazca
Spend a few days seeing the other side of Peru – a surreal mix of enigmatic etchings, giant sand dunes, sea lion colonies and desert lagoons. Surf down the golden dunes and drift around the Islas Ballestas, spotting wild dolphins and penguins. It’s a bizarre and beautiful adventure. Whisking you from Lima to Arequipa over five days, this trip will show you the hidden surprises of the Peruvian coast. You’ll stop for 2 nights at the oasis town of Huacachina and 1 night in Nazca, where you’ll have the chance to see the mysterious Nazca Lines.
Culture and Cookery in Arequipa
Arequipa is an understated highlight of Peru – an attractive city with a distinct personality and a striking volcanic backdrop. Wander along cobbled streets to the local market and enter an explosion of colour, sounds and smells, before exploring the nooks and crannies of the fascinating Monasterio de Santa Catalina. During your time here you’ll also step inside a local home and learn the secrets of how to cook perfect quinoa, chicha or caldo verde from your Arequipeño host.
Condors in the Colca Canyon
Around twice as deep as the Grand Canyon, the Colca Canyon slices through the Andes and affords some of the most spectacular views on the continent. Joining a small group, you’ll begin with a scenic drive past volcanoes, lakes and grazing alpacas, before arriving at your lodge in the town of Coporaque. In the afternoon you can relax or head out hiking through this striking landscape with your guide.
In the morning you’ll head to the deepest part of the canyon – a nesting site for the huge Andean condor, where they glide on thermals close above your head. In the afternoon you can hike or relax in the nearby hot springs, before meeting Josefina and Oswaldo, who live in the valley and will host you tonight in their simple farmstay. After a tasty breakfast prepared with local ingredients, you’ll spend a couple of hours helping out (as best you can!) on the farm, before you continue you Peruvian journey.
You’ll spend the next 2 nights in the youthful town of Puno, from where you’ll set off on a boat trip to the islands and communities of Lake Titicaca. Meet the locals who call this place home, visit a floating reed island, help prepare your lunch using underground ovens, and sit back as you glide across the still waters. Titicaca was a sacred place for the Incas, believed to be the birthplace of the sun, and the lake remains one of the most peaceful and beautiful spots on the continent.
Explore the Cobbled Streets of Cusco
Explore Cusco, the Inca heartland and a city of colourful contrasts. During this trip, you’ll spend two nights in Cusco, the gateway to Machu Picchu and the Sacred Valley. Travellers from all over the world meet here before heading into the mountains, making it a lively hub of restaurants, bars and museums. Scattered with Inca ruins and colonial churches, it’s a brilliant place for an atmospheric wander.
Lares Trek - Authentic Andes
Take the mountain paths less travelled on the Lares Trail – a great alternative to the busy Inca Trail, you’ll pass remote villages and lakes nestled between snowy peaks. If you’re after an authentic taste of life in Andes, this is the trek for you. You’ll join a small, guided group for 3 days of trekking through dramatic landscapes, camping under the stars, meeting the Andean locals and generally feeling a million miles away from it all.
Your trek finishes in the charming little town of Ollantaytambo, where you’ll spend the night easing back into civilisation before hopping on the train towards Machu Picchu the following day. You’ll spend the evening in Aguas Calientes, where you’ll find plenty of other excited travellers enjoying the town’s restaurants and bars, and waiting to see the Lost City for the first time. You’ll head up early the next morning to try and beat the crowds, and to see the site as the morning mist disappears.
After a tour with an official guide, you’ll head back down in time to catch your afternoon train back to Cusco.
Into the Amazon - Jungle Lodge
Spend a few nights sleeping in a comfortable lodge in the heart of the mighty Amazon rainforest, feeling a million miles away from civilisation. Travelling to your riverside base by boat, you’ll head out with expert local guides, on foot and by boat, to explore the jungle and the incredible Amazonian wildlife. Your lodge is owned by the Native Community of Infierno, so you’ll also meet the people who call this amazing place home. All meals and activities are included during your stay.
The wildlife is a major reason to visit the Amazon of course, and around Tambopata you’ll see monkeys, macaws, parrots, toucans, capybaras, caimans and various spiders and insects. There’s also a chance that you might spot a jaguar by the river, meet the group of giant otters who live nearby, or even fish for piranhas!