PERU

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Welcome to the adventure paradise of South America: few travel experiences in the world equal Peru for a spectrum of matchless beauty. Situated on the west coast of South America, Peru is the third largest South American country; a country made up of quiet Andean peaks, vast Amazon rainforests and deserts, laying claim to many secrets and mysteries that have fascinated historians and travellers alike for centuries. 

 

 

Perhaps the greatest race of all in South America were the Incas, expert stonemasons who created cities and temples and filled them with golden treasures. No visit to Peru would be complete without appreciating the grandeur, beauty and mystery of the ancient city of Machu Picchu.  

There is no more intriguing archaeological riddle than the great ground drawings which have lain for centuries on the desert floor of Nazca. Civilisations even older than the Incas were responsible for these strange drawings of birds and animals.  

Here is a fascinating country that offers activities as diverse as cruises on the Amazon from its tropical port, Iquitos, and championship surfing offshore from Lima. Since the Spanish conquered Peru in the 16th century, there has been a mix of native Indian and Spanish cultures and fine examples of these can be seen in most towns. Dining can be very exciting in Peru, as well as shopping for a bargain everywhere from Indian markets to elegant boutiques.  

Good quality hotels and a tradition of welcoming the traveller make Peru an intriguing discovery.  

 

LIMA

3 days / 2 nights  

Day 1: Lima

On arrival you will be met and transferred to your hotel.  

Day 2: Lima

Enjoy a city tour of Lima, often called the City of Kings, including Plaza De Armas with its imposing Cathedral, the Torre Tagle Palace, the Museum of Inquisition, the fascinating catacombs at the San Francisco Church and the modern districts of Miraflores and San Isidro. (B)  

Day 3: Lima

Transfer for onward travel. (B) 

 

NAZCA

3 days / 2 nights  

Day 1: Lima-Ica

Transfer to the bus terminal and travel south to Ica, the wine capital of Peru. On arrival you will be met at your hotel.  

Day 2: Ica

Early morning departure to Paracas for an excursion to the Marine Sanctuary of the Ballestas Islands. On this morning's cruise across the Bay of Paracas, you will view the giant candelabra etched into the mountainside. This afternoon enjoy a flight over the plains of Nazca to view the famous Nazca Lines.  

Day 3: Ica-Lima

Morning at leisure prior to returning to Lima and transfer for onward travel.  

 

AREQUIPA 

4 days / 3 nights  

Arequipa, the second largest city in Peru, is majestically situated at the base of the volcano "El Misti", and known as the "White City" because of the many colonial buildings built from the local white volcanic rock.  

Day 1: Arequipa

On arrival you will be met and transferred to your hotel.  

Day 2: Arequipa-Canyon de Colca

Today's excursion is to one of the deepest canyons in the world, the Canyon de Colca: twice as deep as the Grand Canyon it is situated at 3,200 metres. Pass the smoking volcano of Sabancaya and the villages of Yanque and Chivay, and visit some churches enroute where you can still see statues of Phillip II of Spain, prior to an overnight in a quaint Andean town. (B,L,D)  

Day 3: Canyon de Colca-Arequipa

Early morning departure through the awesome Canyon de Colca, finally reaching the Cruz del Condor to view the majestic condors in flight, prior to returning to Arequipa. (B,L)  

Day 4: Arequipa

Transfer for onward travel.  

 

TREASURES OF SIPAN

4 days / 3 nights  

Day 1: Chiclayo

On arrival you will be met and transferred to your hotel.  

Day 2: Chiclayo

Full day tour to the Pyramids of Tucume including a visit to the Burning Museum, home of the treasures of Sipan. (B,L)  

Day 3: Chiclayo-Trujillo

Morning visit to the Ruins of Sipan, prior to transfer by road to Trujillo with its old colonial mansions and Museum. (B)  

Day 4: Trujillo

Morning tour to Chan-Chan, the greatest adobe city in the world. Visit the "huacas" of the sun and the moon in the Moche Valley and the fishing village of Huanchaco where totora boats are still used. Return to Trujillo for transfer for onward travel. (B)  

 

PUERTO MALDONADO - 

3 days / 2 nights  

Located in the Peruvian Amazon jungle, Puerto Maldonado offers the visitor an insight into jungle life and is an area with an abundance of bird and wildlife. It is located on the confluence of the Madre De Dios and Tambopata Rivers, close to the borders of Brazil and Bolivia. A typical jungle city, it is the gateway to very remote jungle lodges, which offer excellent bird/butterfly watching and numerous flora for the botanists.  

Day 1: Puerto Maldonado-Lodge

On arrival, you will be met and transferred to the port, from where you will be taken to your lodge by motorised canoe on a four hour trip during which you see changes from colonised deforested land to primary rainforest. Afternoon jungle hike to observe wildlife. (D)  

Day 2: Lodge

Full day exploration of the surrounding rainforest including a jungle walk to an old Oxbow lake, rich in wildlife and lush forest. This afternoon bathe in a clear rainforest stream or take additional walks in the forest. (B,L,D)  

Day 3: Lodge-Puerto Maldonado

Watch the sunrise on the river before returning to Puerto Maldonado and the airport for onward travel. (B)  

 

PUNO

3 days / 2 nights  

Not one week goes by without some festival - religious or profane! The city's real attraction, however, is Lake Titicaca - the highest navigable lake in the world.  

Day 1: Puno

On arrival you will be met and transferred to your hotel.  

Day 2: Puno

Morning transfer to the dock for your cruise to the floating islands of reeds inhabited by the Uros, one of the oldest races of man. Here you will see how they live in huts built on platforms of reeds no more than 30 or 40 cms thick. (B)  

Day 3: Puno

Transfer for onward travel. (B)  

 

MANU NATIONAL PARK

Covering 1,800,000 hectares of pristine environment, Manu National Park is the largest tropical park in South America, and has been designated by the United Nations as a biosphere reserve. The visitor encounters a wide variety of tropical habitat and many species of plants and animals.  

 

NATIONAL PARK

7 days / 6 nights  

Day 1: Cuzco-Madre de Dios

Leave Cuzco by midnight of the previous day, in order to arrive in Tres Cruces in time to watch the sun rise over the Amazon basin. As your bus descends from 3500 metres to 600 metres, you pass through all the ecological zones of the Andes. Mid afternoon, arriving at Alto Madre De Dios River, you take a motorised canoe to your jungle lodge. (B,L,D)  

Day 2: Madre de Dios-Boca Manu

Board your canoe to go downstream on the Madre De Dios River to visit a native farm, reaching the confluence of the Manu River in the afternoon. Camp is set at Boca Manu for the night. (B,L,D)  

Day 3: Cocha Salvador

Continue up the Manu River to the vicinity of the Cocha Salvador. A trail cut through the jungle will get you to the Oxbow Lake where you will spend the rest of the day exploring the surrounding fauna and flora. Camp is set in Cocha Salvador for the night. (B,L,D)  

Day 4: Cocha Salvador

All day hike through trails cut in the surroundings of this lovely protected lake observing a multitude of wildlife. (B,L,D)  

Day 5: Cocha Salvador

Canoe trip to the nearby Cocha Otorongo to experience a different city and have a chance to see other wildlife. Late return to previous night's campsite. (B,L,D)  

Day 6: Boca Manu

After an early morning walk through the jungle, return to Boca Manu. Camp nearby. (B,L,D)  

Day 7: Boca Manu-Puerto Maldonado

Depart from Boca Manu to Puerto Maldonado for onward travel. (B) 

 

INCA TRAIL TO MACHU PICCHU

 

 

 

 

 

The most popular trek in Peru and well known for its exceptional beauty and numerous archaeological sites. 

Day 1: Cuzco-Huayllabamba

Leave Cuzco by bus to the trail at Chillca. Meet your porters, who will carry your heavy gear, and begin your trek. Hike along the Vilnacota River to the ruins of Llactapata. Continue to the hamlet of Huayllabamba for an overnight camp. (L,D)  

Day 2: Huayllabamba-Pacasmayo

A fairly strenuous day with a full day's hike passing through rustic Indian villages, fields and forests to emerge above the tree line, reaching the Warmiwanusqa Pass (4200 metres) for magnificent views of snow peaks, prior to descending to your camp. (B,L,D)  

Day 3: Pacasmayo-Phuyopatamarka

Today you will cross a second pass and follow a fine Inca highway down the ridgetop ruins of Sayaqmarka. Further on pass through a tunnel amidst luxurious vegetation, then camp at a magnificent site overlooking the Vilcanota River far below. (B,L,D)  

Day 4: Phuyopatamarka-Machu Picchu

Today you arrive in Machu Picchu, the Lost City of the Incas. Hike for several hours to the remains of Winay Huayna. Continue along the Royal Highway, before descending through the orchid rich Cloud Forest to Machu Picchu in the afternoon, where you will camp by the river beneath the ruins. (B,L,D)  

Day 5: Machu Picchu-Cuzco

This morning enter the city for a full day of exploring. Late in the afternoon, return by train to Cuzco and transfer for onward travel. (B)  

 

CUZCO - THE ARCHAEOLOGICAL CAPITAL OF THE AMERICAS

Cuzco is the centre of the Inca Empire and is a must to see. It is a Spanish colonial city built on top of the Inca stone masonry. Cusco was the capital of a sun worshipping civilisation that ruled 25 million people without written language,and is the oldest inhabited city in the western hemisphere, as well as the starting point for Machu Picchu, the Lost City of the Incas, which is a truly incredible sight.  

 

CUZCO EXPRESS 

3 days / 2 nights  

Day 1: Cuzco

On arrival you will be met and transferred to your hotel. Afternoon sightseeing tour of Cuzco and the surrounding valley including the ruins of Saqsaywaman, Kenko and Tambo Machay.  

Day 2: Cuzco

Full day excursion along a magnificent switchback railway to the fabulous city of the Incas - Machu Picchu, a contained mountain fortress which lay undiscovered and covered in jungle until 1911. Afternoon return to Cuzco. (B,L)  

Day 3: Cuzco

Early transfer to the airport/bus station. (B)  

 

CUZCO WITH OVERNIGHT MACHU PICCHU 

4 days / 3 nights  

Day 1: Cuzco

On arrival you will be met and transferred to your hotel. Afternoon sightseeing tour of Cuzco and the surrounding valley including the ruins of Saqsaywaman, Kenko and Tambo Machay.  

Day 2: Cuzco-Machu Picchu

Full day excursion along a magnificent switchback railway to the fabulous city of the Incas - Machu Picchu, a contained mountain fortress which lay undiscovered and covered in jungle until 1911. Overnight is provided at one of the hotels in Machu Picchu which allows you more time to explore these impressive ruins at a more leisurely pace. (B,L)  

Day 3: Machu Picchu-Cuzco

Morning free to explore more of Machu Picchu, perhaps climb Huayna Picchu or visit the Inca Bridge, prior to your late afternoon return by train to Cuzco. (B)  

Day 4: Cuzco

Transfer for onward travel. (B)  

 

OPTIONAL CUZCO-PUNO-LA PAZ 

6 days / 5 nights  

Day 1: Cuzco

On arrival you will be met and transferred to your hotel. Afternoon sightseeing tour of Cuzco and the surrounding valley including the ruins of Saqsaywaman, Kenko and Tambo Machay.  

Day 2: Cuzco-Machu Picchu

Full day excursion along a magnificent switchback railway to the fabulous city of  

the Incas - Machu Picchu, a contained mountain fortress which lay undiscovered and covered in jungle until 1911. Overnight option is available. (B,L)  

OVERNIGHT OPTION

Morning free to explore more of Machu Picchu, perhaps climb Huayna Picchu or visit the Inca Bridge prior to your late afternoon return by train to Cuzco.  

Day 3: Cuzco-Puno

On this magnificent full day's railway journey, pass through picturesque Andean villages, and barter for many handicrafts, enroute to Puno on the shores of Lake Titicaca. (B)  

Day 4: Puno-La Paz

Travel by coach through Juli and cross the Bolivian border to Copacabana for lunch. After visiting this quaint city, you board your cruiser for a visit to Sun Island and then onto Huatajata where you continue by coach to La Paz. (B,L)  

Day 5: La Paz

This morning your city tour will include the famous colonial buildings and Indian markets complete with witch doctors, prior to continuing onto the mysterious Valley of the Moon with its strange volcanic formations. Afternoon at leisure. (B)  

Day 6: La Paz

Transfer for onward travel. (B)  

 

IQUITOS

see also Nature Cruises , Amazon Cruises & Manaus  

Iquitos is the gateway to the Amazon region and has the largest tropical jungle in the world. It is responsible for 50% of the renovated oxygen on Earth, and its hydrographic basin contains over 1000 rivers and lakes, no less than one fifth of the fresh water reserves on Earth. The Amazon is one of Nature's favourite shows, filled with the most exuberant flora and fauna known to man: thousands of noble century old trees where nearly 15,000 species of animals live; among them 1,800 bird species, 2,000 kinds of mammals and 1,500 types of fish.  

The majority of this fabulous world is found in the northern part of the continent, one third of which is in Peruvian territory, the remainder in Colombia, Venezuela and Brazil. However the Amazon region is not for everyone: we advise you to go with an open mind and experience it for what it is, be prepared to endure walks, and hot and humid climate; in return it will most certainly give you the experience of a lifetime.  

 

IQUITOS & THE AMAZON JUNGLE

3 days / 2 nights  

Day 1: Iquitos-Amazon Camp

On arrival you will be met for a brief city tour and transferred to the dock, where you will board a motorised canoe for your trip down the Amazon River to the Amazon Camp located on the Mormon River (a tributary of the Amazon). After lunch take a jungle walk and visit the Yaguana Indians (famed blowgun hunters). (L,D)  

Day 2: Amazon Camp

Today your guide will take you for a jungle walk to visit the Bora Indian Village. Here you may practice your bargaining skills prior to returning to the Camp this afternoon to relax, go canoeing or bird watching. (B,L,D)  

Day 3: Amazon Camp-Iquitos

Return to Iquitos and transfer for onward travel. (B)  

 

JUNGLE EXPEDITIONS

TAMBO WILDERNESS

2 days / 1 night  

Day 1: 

Leave Amazon Camp and cruise up the Mormon River to arrive at your camp site, a specially built house of native construction, shortly after midday. Time to explore the village, meet the villagers and take a brief jungle excursion before dinner and overnight. (L,D)  

Day 2: 

Rise early for a bird watching excursion. After breakfast, take an extensive jungle hike and try your hand at fishing. Mid afternoon cruise down the river returning to the Amazon Camp or on to Iquitos and transfer for onward travel. (B,L)  

 

TAMBO TAHUAYO 

3 days /2 nights  

Day 1:

Morning departure from Iquitos cruising up the Amazon past the village of Tamshiyacu to the Tahuayo River. Continue to Tambo Tahuayo in dense jungle and set up camp. After dinner enjoy a night fishing trip. (L,D)  

Day 2:

Extensive morning jungle hike through lush rainforest. This afternoon after lunch take a canoe trip to the Padre Cocha Lake to look for fresh water dolphins and water fowl. Evening caiman spotting. (B,L,D)  

Day 3:

Early jungle walk with emphasis on bird watching prior to returning to Iquitos this afternoon with a side trip to see the giant Victoria Regia water lillies. Transfer for onward travel. (B)  

 

TAMBO YARAPA 

4 days / 3 nights  

Day 1:

Depart from Iquitos travelling 85 kms up river to the Yarapa River and the Tambo Yarapa campsite. Night fishing excursion. (L,D)  

Day 2:

Long morning hike and afternoon trip to nearby lakes. Evening caiman spotting along river banks. (B,L,D)  

Day 3:

Full day boat trip to the Yarapa River and its tributaries. (B,L,D)  

Day 4:

Morning departure for Iquitos, along the Yarapa River stopping enroute to explore different jungle areas and the village of Tamshiyacu. Transfer for onward travel. (B)

  

TAMBO AMPIYACU

7 days / 6 nights  

Day 1:

Leave Iquitos onboard the M/V Rio Amazonas. Accommodation is in airconditioned cabins with community bathroom. (L,D)  

Day 2:

After breakfast the expedition crew and guide will be waiting for you, to take you across the Amazon River up the Ampiyacu River for several days of exploration.  

(B,L,D)  

Days 3-5:

Leave the M/V Rio Amazonas for three full days of jungle hikes, canoe trips and indepth exploration of this remote region of the Ampiyacu tributaries. All meals, English speaking guides and camping equipment will be provided. This is an ideal area for bird watching and animal viewing. (B,L,D)  

Day 6:

This afternoon return to Pevas to meet the M/V Rio Amazonas on its upriver voyage. Board for dinner and overnight. (B,L,D)  

Day 7:

After breakfast, arrive in Iquitos and transfer for onward travel. (B)  

 

NATURE CRUISES ON THE M.V. DELFIN

The Delfin is a 20 passenger, twin deck river boat built in 1982 and refurbished in 1988 for the purpose of carrying tourists in basic comfort to remote tributaries of the Amazon. It has ten cabins, four bathrooms and a crew of nine.  

 

NAUTA CANO NATURE CRUISE

Day 1: (Sun.) Iquitos-Cruising

On arrival you will be met and transferred to the M/V Delfin for the Nauta Cano nature cruise. Begin by travelling up the Amazon to the village of Tamshiyacu, with its dirt streets, wandering livestock, and welcoming committee of small children. Continue to the Yanayacu area, a favorite haunt of Amazon river dolphins. (L,D)  

Day 2: (Mon.) Cruising

Cruise up the Amazon to the confluence of the Maranon and Ucayali Rivers, continuing up the Maranono to the historic town of Nauta for a brief stop. In the evening drop anchor in a small tributary, where the rainforest almost surrounds the boat. (B,L,D)  

Day 3: (Tue.) Cruising

A full day exploration of this area, with its abundant bird and water life, using launches to see rainforest at close hand. (B,L,D)  

Day 4: (Wed.) Cruising-Iquitos

Early morning departure downriver to Iquitos, stopping to visit other points of interest. Transfer for onward travel. (B)  

 

MADRE SELVA NATURE CRUISE 

Day 1: (Wed.) Iquitos-Cruising

On arrival in Iquitos you will be met and transferred to the M/V Delfin for the Madre Selva Nature cruise. Sail down river through the Yanamono Channel, stopping at different villages en route. (L,D)  

Day 2: (Thu.) Cruising

Morning bird watching prior to continuing down river to the mouth of the Ampiyacu River. Sail up this small picturesque tributary where the jungle foliage seems to engulf the boat. Conditions permitting, sail into Atun Lake for excellent fishing and bird watching. In the evening a night excursion to spot the Amazon caiman.  

(B,L,D)  

Day 3: (Fri.) Cruising

On your jungle trek today you will experience the jungle at first hand. Your guide will explain the many varieties of plants, vines and trees seen. This afternoon cruise back to the main river and up the Amazon near the mouth of the historic Napo River. (B,L,D)  

Day 4: (Sat.) Cruising-Iquitos

Return to Iquitos and transfer for onward travel. (B)  

 

ECOLOGICAL CRUISE

7 days / 6 nights  

Join Nauto Cano and Madre Selva cruises. Departs Sundays.  

 

AMAZON RIVER CRUISES

M/V RIO AMAZONAS

Passenger capacity 55, 26 air-conditioned cabins on upper and lower decks. On the Rio Amazonas you can enjoy the thrills of an Amazon Expedition by day and return to your air-conditioned cabin by night. The vessel has a spacious dining area and two well stocked bars, as well as plenty of deck area both covered and un-covered with simply comfortable hammocks for a nap as the ship sails on the world's largest river. Built 1981, length 44.5 metres, draught 2 metres, crew 18, width 9 metres, tonnage 350 tonnes, speed 10 knots, registry Peru.   

 

DOWN RIVER CRUISE

Day 1: (Sun.) Iquitos

Your Amazon experience begins with arrival at the bustling Peruvian river port of Iquitos, where you are met at the airport and transferred to the downtown office for a final document check prior to boarding the M/V Amazonas for your cruise. (D)  

Day 2: (Mon.) Cruising 

At dawn you will enjoy a bird watching expedition and later in the morning you will visit Bora and Huitoto Indian Villages and the town of Pevas. In the afternoon njoy a jungle hike in the Shishita River area. Night cruise by launch up a small tributary. (B,L,D)  

Day 3: (Tue.) Cruising

Morning jungle walk, and piranha fishing expedition to a small lake. Afternoon visit to missionary village at Caballococha, and evening search for Amazon caiman. (B,L,D)  

Day 4: (Wed.) 

Morning arrival and transfer for onward travel. (B,L)  

 

UP RIVER CRUISE

Day 1: (Wed.) Tabatinga

On arrival you will be transferred across to the M/V Rio Amazonas for the beginning of your cruise. (D)  

Day 2: (Thu.) Cruising

Morning launch trip up the Ataquari River to fish in a backwater lake. Afternoon visit to the remote leper hospital at San Pablo, with time to browse in the primitive gift shop. Night cruise on the Mayaruna River. (B,L,D)  

Day 3: (Fri.) Cruising

Clear Peruvian Customs at Pijuayal and continue up the Ampiyacu River to spend the afternoon with the Bora and Huitoto Indians, trading and watching their tribal dances. (B,L,D)  

Day 4: (Sat.) Iquitos

This morning continue your cruise and arrive at the port of Iquitos. Transfer for onward travel. (B)  

 

M/V AMAZONAS ROUND TRIP CRUISE

7 days / 6 nights  

Join Down River and Up River cruises. Departs Sundays.  

 

M/V ARCA

Has been specially refurbished to cruise the Amazon River. It has 18 twin cabins with upper and lower bunks all fitted in cedar and elegant Amazon mahogany. It has an enclosed dining room, covered lounge/bar area and sundecks. Built 1982 length 30 metres, draught 1.5 metres, crew of 18, capacity 38, width 7 metres, tonnage 205 tonnes, speed 10 knots, registry Peru.  

 

DOWN RIVER CRUISE 

Day 1: (Sun.) Iquitos

On arrival you will be met and transferred to the M/V Arca. This morning you take a rain forest hike before sailing.  

Day 2: (Mon.) Cruising

Morning bird watching and visit to Yagua Indian Village. Later, stop at Pevas, oldest Peruvian town on the Amazon. Afternoon jungle hike in the Shishita River area followed by a night cruise up a small tributary. (B,L,D)  

Day 3: (Tue.) Cruising

Morning jungle walk to see the Victoria Regia water lilies, followed by a piranha fishing expedition. Afernoon visit to a missionary village at Lake Caballococha. After sunset, we look for caiman in the lake's reedy shallows. (B,L,D)  

Day 4: (Wed.) Tabatinga

On arrival you will be transferred for onward travel. (B)  

 

UP RIVER CRUISE

Day 1: (Wed.) Tabatinga

On arrival you will be met and transferred to the M/V Arca for your journey down the Amazon River. (D)  

Day 2: (Thu.) Cruising

Stop in Chimbote for a jungle walk and continue to the remote leper hospital at San Pablo, with time to browse in the primitive gift shop for handicraft items. (B,L,D)  

Day 3: (Fri.) Cruising

Clear Peruvian Customs at Pijuayal. Time permitting, stop to visit Bora Indians near Purca-Urquillo and take a short jungle walk. (B,L,D)  

Day 4: (Sat.) Iquitos

Early morning arrival in Iquitos, and transfer for onward travel. (B)  

 

M/V ARCA ROUND TRIP CRUISE

7 DAYS / 6 NIGHTS

Join Down River and Up River cruises. Departs Sundays.