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Explore Northern Peru & Machu Picchu

Explore Northern Peru & Machu Picchu


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Overview

Dates & Prices

*Please Note: Internal Flights are not included in the price.
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Sat, Sep 12, 2020
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Sun, Sep 27, 2020
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Sat, Oct 10, 2020
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Sun, Oct 25, 2020
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Sat, Apr 24, 2021
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Sun, May 09, 2021
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Sat, May 22, 2021
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Sat, Jun 19, 2021
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Sun, Jul 04, 2021
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Sat, Aug 14, 2021
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Sun, Aug 29, 2021
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Sat, Sep 11, 2021
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Sun, Sep 26, 2021
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Itinerary

Countries Visited

Peru

Tour Itinerary

Explore Trujillo's baroque churches and local markets, See the UNESCO World Heritage-listed adobe ruins of Chan Chan, Visit a women's weaving cooperative in Ccaccaccollo, Witness the terraced pools and salt pans of Las Salinera, Experience Machu Picchu in the early morning light

Experience the many splendours of Peru's ancient past on this 16-day tour that takes you to famed sites and hidden gems. In northern Peru, discover traces of pre-Inca cultures, including the mountaintop fortified city of Kuelap, home to the Chachapoyas "Cloud Warriors;" and the eroded adobe ruins of Chan Chan. Round out your exploration of Peru's fascinating past with an early morning guided visit to magnificent Machu Picchu.

Day 1: Lima
Arrive at any time. Arrival transfer included.
Activity: The adventure begins tonight. Feel free to explore before your welcome meeting, but make sure you're back in time to meet the group. Check for the meeting time on the welcome note at the hotel. After introductions, your CEO will review the details of your tour. Please note that normal check-in times apply at our start hotels, but you can usually store your luggage for the day if you arrive early.
Accommodation: Hotel Antigua Miraflores (or similar)

Day 2: Lima/Chachapoyas
Board an early flight to Jaen, then travel overland to Chachapoyas, gateway to the archaeological sites of northern Peru. "Chacha" as it's known locally, will be our base for exploring the natural, cultural, and archaeological highlights of the region.
Transport: Look! Up in the sky! It's a bird! It's a plane! It's... yup, it is a plane, actually.
Transport: Settle in and scan the scenery from the convenience of a private vehicle.
Accommodation: Casa Hacienda Achamaqui (or similar)
Meal(s): Breakfast

Day 3: Gocta Falls
Hike through the cloud forest to Gocta waterfall, one of the world's tallest cascades, 771 meters (2,156 feet) high. Ancient legends that discouraged local community members from talking about the falls, which did not begin receiving visitors until 2005 and are still relatively unknown. Take in Gocta's mesmerizing spray; then opt for a longer hike to its base, or enjoy a free afternoon.
Activity: Well-known to local people of the area for centuries, Gocta Falls was unknown to the outside world until 2005. The impressive falls, standing 771m (2156 ft) high are amongst the tallest in the world. Begin at the town of San Pablo de Valera and hike through sugar cane farms and cloud forest to reach the Gocta Falls lookout.
Accommodation: Casa Hacienda Achamaqui (or similar)
Meal(s): Breakfast

Day 4: Kuelap Fortress
This morning, get immersed in the culture and history of the Chachapoyan people at Kuelap, a fortified city made up of more than 400 circular buildings and complexes. Ride a cable car up to the site, thought to have been an important cultural center for these pre-Inca "Cloud Warriors." Learn about coffee harvesting at a sustainable coffee farm before tasting coffee from the area. Later, try to spot some of the 130 bird species that live in the surrounding ecological reserve, including the spatula-tailed hummingbird.
Activity: Often referred to as 'Machu Picchu of the North', Kuelap pre-dates it's well-known neighbour to the south by 400-600 years. Built by the Chachapoyan people in the sixth century AD, Kuelap was rediscovered in 1843. With over 400 circular buildings perched on top of a mountain, this fortified city is an architectural wonder. Ride up in a cable car for stunning views of the surrounding area.
Activity: Join a local host and expert to visit a family-run sustainable coffee farm. Using an agroforestry system, they produce Café Amazilia, a speciality coffee grown inside the Andean sub-tropical forest, 2,000m (6,562 ft) above sea level. You will discover how a previously deforested area was regrown by planting native tree species around the coffee crops, hearing about pre- and post-harvesting processes and enjoy a tasting of sustainable coffee. After, you'll sit down with your fellow travellers to a delicious lunch featuring locally-sourced ingredients.
Activity: Home to over 130 different types of hummingbirds and five endemic species the ecological reserve is perfect for birdwatching. Keep your eyes peeled for the spatula-tailed hummingbird.
Accommodation: Casa Hacienda Achamaqui (or similar)
Meal(s): Breakfast Lunch

Day 5: Chachapoyas/Chiclayo
Today, drive to Chiclayo. This coastal town, founded in the 18th century, was once an important trade route between the coast and the jungle and is rich with archaeological sites and cultural history. Spend the rest of the day exploring the city on your own.
Transport: Settle in and scan the scenery from the convenience of a private vehicle.
Accommodation: Casa Andina Select Chiclayo (or similar)
Meal(s): Breakfast Lunch

Day 6: Chiclayo
Enjoy a visit to one of the most archaeologically rich museums in Peru: the Royal Tombs of Sipán Museum. In the afternoon, explore the tombs of Huaca Rajada and Lord Sipán, a series of burial chambers used by the pre-Inca Moche culture.
Activity: Modelled after the pyramids where the 13 tombs were uncovered in the 1980s, the Royal Tombs of Sipán Museum houses one of the most impressive collections of pre-Colombian burial artifacts in South America. With no written record of the civilization, the painted pots and artifacts give a glimpse into the height of Moche culture and the fascinating rituals that took place over 1500 years ago.
Activity: The excavation of the Huaca Rajada complex in 1987 uncovered a series of burial sites from Moche's elite including the Lord of Sipán a Moche warrior priest. His tomb is one of the most decorated tombs found untouched by looters in South America. Complete with gold, ceramics, jewelry, sacrificed animals, and six other people thought to be servants or members of his family.
Accommodation: Casa Andina Select Chiclayo (or similar)
Meal(s): Breakfast Lunch

Day 7: Chiclayo/Trujillo
Drive down the coast to colonial Trujillo, stopping along the way at the tomb of the Dama de Cao. Tour the site and hear about the mummy discovered here in 2006, thought to be the remains of the Lady of Cao, a high-ranking Moche ruler. In the afternoon, explore Trujillo to discover baroque churches and local markets.
Transport: Settle in and scan the scenery from the convenience of a private vehicle.
Activity: Visit the El Brujo Archaeological Complex where a female Moche mummy coined the Dama de Cao (Lady of Cao) is housed. Discovered in 2006 Dama de Cao was found wrapped in multiple layers of fabric with gold weapons and other fine objects concealed in the different layers. With distinct tattoos covering her arms, burial weaponry typically found with Moche men, and a larger mummy wrapping she is thought to be of high standing in the Moche culture, but her exact title and role remain a mystery.
Activity: Visit the Plaza de Armas and the yellow Trujillo Cathedral originally built in 1647. Continue to explore the city's highlights with a local guide to describe the architecture and history of this coastal city.
Accommodation: Casa Andina Standard Trujillo (or similar)
Meal(s): Breakfast

Day 8: Chan Chan/Lima
Visit the Temples of the Sun and the Moon. Later, enjoy a visit to Chan Chan, a UNESCO World Heritage site and the world's largest adobe city. The former capital of the Chimu people, Chan Chan covers 26 square kilometers (10 square miles) and was once home to about 50,000 people. Fly back to Lima this evening.
Activity: Visit the Huacas del Moche made up of the Temple of the Sun (Huaca del Sol) and the Moon (Huaca de la Luna). These adobe brick temples each served a specific purpose for the Moche people that predated the Inca to the south. The larger Temple of the Sun was used for administrative and military purposes and is thought to be made of over 100 million adobe bricks. The Temple of the Moon was a ceremonial temple thought to have been used for religious ceremonies including human sacrifices.
Activity: Visit the ruins of Chan Chan, the capital of Peru's largest pre-Inca empire, located 5km (3.1 mi) away from the city of Trujillo. Abandoned in the 1470s after the Inca army overran the city, it is now approximately 5,000 acres of eroded adobe.
Transport: Look! Up in the sky! It's a bird! It's a plane! It's... yup, it is a plane, actually.
Accommodation: Hotel Antigua Miraflores (or similar)
Meal(s): Breakfast

Day 9: Lima
Enjoy a free day to explore Lima's capital city.
Accommodation: Hotel Antigua Miraflores (or similar)
Meal(s): Breakfast

Day 10: Lima/Urubamba
Board an early flight to Cusco then head to the scenic Sacred Valley. Explore the pre-Inca salt pans of Las Salineras and tour the Maras and Moray ruins. Enjoy a traditional pachamanca-style meal of local specialties.
Transport: Look! Up in the sky! It's a bird! It's a plane! It's... yup, it is a plane, actually.
Transport: Times includes all stops and visits enroute through the Sacred Valley.
Activity: Explore the ancient site of Moray, which archeologists believe was used to conduct agricultural experiments. Climb down to the bottom of the great circular depressions and notice how the temperature shifts with the depth - sometimes as much as 15°C (27°F)!
Activity: Visit the pre-Incan salt pans of Las Salineras - still in use today. Marvel at the terraced pools set amongst the beauty of the Sacred Valley.
Accommodation: Hotel San Agustin Urubamba (or similar)
Meal(s): Breakfast Dinner

Day 11: Urubamba
Continue exploring the Sacred Valley with a visit to the "Parque de la Papa" ("Potato Park"). An exclusive experience for Journeys travellers and part of G Adventures for Good, you'll walk through this rural community with a local guide to learn about potato cultivation, weaving, and the importance of both to Andean culture. Also, explore the Ollantaytambo and Pisac ruins and visit the G Adventures-supported Sacred Valley Community Restaurant in Huchuy Qosqo.
Transport: Times includes all stops and visits enroute through the Sacred Valley.
Activity: In Peru's Sacred Valley of the Inca, six communities of approximately 6000 indigenous people are working together to preserve over 700 species of potato - a cornerstone of life here. As part of an experience exclusive to National Geographic Journeys travellers - and part of our G Adventures for Good program - visit this area, named "Parque de la Papa" ("Potato Park"), to learn about life in an Andean agricultural community. Walk through the park here with a local guide, dropping by the seed bank (which has direct ties to the Svalbard Global Seed Vault in Norway) and then head out to the fields to watch the planting or harvesting process, depending on the season. After, enjoy some of the delicious varieties of potato and visit the small stone hut where traditional weaving takes place. Learn about the natural dyeing process and witness alpaca wool strands being transformed into beautiful textiles through a centuries-old backstrap weaving style. Your visit to this special community means this local enterprise can continue earning an income that supports their development and conservation goals.
Activity: Parque de la Papa (meaning "Potato Park") serves two important purposes for the community of Pampallacta: the preservation of agricultural biodiversity and economic opportunity. National Geographic Journeys travellers visit the park to learn about life in a rural agricultural Andean community and take a tour of the seed conservation program, which is preserving heritage potato species. They also learn about traditional planting, harvesting and indigenous weaving practices. With G Adventures' support, the community is able to create jobs in the area and invest in local businesses, which helps the community preserve their culture.
Activity: Tour the fascinating hilltop citadel of Pisac, an Incan ruin with plunging gorges, a ceremonial centre, and winding agriculture terracing that's still in use today. Be captivated by this truly amazing site sitting amid sweeping green valleys and mountain peaks. Explore the back of the site to see a pocketed cliff across Kitamayo Gorge, which once contained hundreds of Inca tombs.
Activity: Contribute to sustainable tourism in Huchuy Qosqo, a small village of 65 families in the Sacred Valley, by eating at the Parwa Community Restaurant. Learn how the resident-run restaurant was kickstarted by G Adventures and the Multilateral Investment Fund, to become a successful farm-to-table program that boosts the local economy and several spin-off microenterprises.
Activity: Tour the town and fortress of Ollantaytambo with a local guide. Take a step back in time at this Inca archaeological site; it still shows signs of its former glory, including agricultural terraces, a Temple Hill, and storehouses. Learn how the area, overlooking the Urubamba River Valley, was an important stronghold during warfare between the Spanish and Incas.
Accommodation: Hotel San Agustin Urubamba (or similar)
Meal(s): Breakfast Lunch

Day 12: Urubamba/Aguas Calientes
Catch an early transfer to Ollantaytambo station and board the scenic train to Aguas Calientes with the option to visit the market.
Transport: Settle in and scan the scenery from the convenience of a private vehicle.
Transport: Climb aboard, take a seat, and enjoy the ride.
Accommodation: Hotel Taypikala Machupicchu (or similar)
Meal(s): Breakfast

Day 13: Aguas Calientes/Cusco
Enjoy a guided tour of the Machu Picchu ruins. Get free time to explore on your own or take an optional visit to the Inca Bridge before returning to Cusco by train.
Transport: Climb aboard, grab a seat, and enjoy the ride.
Activity: Rise and shine - the best time to see the Lost City of the Incas is in the early morning light. Follow the local guide to Machu Picchu to learn about its history at a leisurely pace. Gain local insight into the Inti Mach'ay cave, Inti Watana, the Temple of the Water, the Temple of the Condor, and the Room of the Three Windows. Take time to sit and feel the energy of this 15th-century site, now both a UNESCO World Heritage site and voted one of the new Seven Wonders of the World (in a worldwide Internet poll).
Transport: Climb aboard, take a seat, and enjoy the ride.
Transport: Settle in and scan the scenery from the convenience of a private vehicle.
Accommodation: **Hotel Taypikala (CEO with Group) (or similar)
Meal(s): Breakfast

Day 14: Cusco
Explore historic Cusco with options to visit museums or go whitewater rafting, horseback riding, or mountain biking. This evening, take in a different view of the night sky at the Cusco Planetarium. Enjoy a presentation on the southern sky, contemporary astronomy, and the ancient Inca relationship with the cosmos. Check out the on-site museum and use their telescopes to admire the stars.
Free Time: Take in the sights on horseback or rent a motorbike for a more thrilling ride. Looking to learn more about Cusco? Head to one of the many museums in the city.
Activity: Look to the night sky for a different view of the city. Explore the Cusco Planetarium surrounded by the serene nature of the Llaullipata Ecological Reserve. Enjoy a presentation on the southern sky, contemporary astronomy, and the ancient Incas' relationship with the cosmos. Check out the on-site museum and use the telescopes to admire the stars (weather-permitting).
Accommodation: **Hotel Taypikala (CEO with Group) (or similar)
Meal(s): Breakfast

Day 15: Cusco/Lima
Fly back to Lima and spend an afternoon in Peru's bustling capital.
Transport: Look! Up in the sky! It's a bird! It's a plane! It's... yup, it is a plane, actually.
Accommodation: Hotel Antigua Miraflores (or similar)
Meal(s): Breakfast

Day 16: Lima
Depart at any time.
Activity: Not ready to leave? Your CEO can help with travel arrangements to extend your adventure.
Meal(s): Breakfast

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Inclusions

Meals Included
15 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 1 dinner

Transport
Private van, plane, walking.

Inclusions
Your Journeys Highlight Moment: Sustainable Coffee Farm Experience, Amazilia Ecological Reserve Your Journeys Highlight Moment: Traditional Andean Experience, Urubamba Your Journeys Highlight Moment: Cusco Planetarium, Cusco Your G for Good Moment: Parque de la Papa (Potato Park), Urubamba Your G for Good Moment: Parwa Community Restaurant the Sacred Valley, Lamay Your Discover Moment: Cusco. Arrival transfer. Kuelap fortress visit (Chachapoyas). Gocta waterfall hike. Royal Tombs of Sipán Museum (Lambayeque). Lord of Sipán tomb visit. Dama de Cao mummy visit. Chan Chan adobe city visit. Two-day Sacred Valley tour including Ollantaytambo, Moray, and Pisac ruins and pre-Inca salt pans. Traditional pachamanca-style dinner. Scenic train and guided tour of Machu Picchu. Internal flights. All transport between destinations and to/from included activities.

OR Call Us For a Free Quote 1-800-935-2620

Accommodations

Hotels (15 nts).

OR Call Us For a Free Quote 1-800-935-2620

Questions & Answers

Question: How many suitcases can I take with me on my trip?

Each person is allowed one "check-in," and one "carry-on." Remember to take all valuables with you as "carry-on", because electronic equipment, cameras, laptops, jewelry, business documents and money are not covered by the airlines' liability, so always carry them aboard with you.

Question: Is Airfare Included in the Price?

Airfare from your point of origin to and from the trip is not included in the land price.

National Geographic Tours Customer Reviews

Overall Rating
4.2
Accommodations
3.6
Itinerary
4.4
Professional Staff
4.8
Repeat with Operator
4.2
Value for Money
3.9

Ratings based off 42 reviews about National Geographic Tours - currently showing 2 reviews with comments only

Outstanding trip and tours with plenty of opportunities for planned and unplanned adventures. Knowledgeable, friendly, and capable guides who kept us moving while allowing adequate free time for exploring on one's own.

Affordable Tours was helpful, answered all questions, booked tour and all flights for us. Great experience! We will definitely book through AT again.


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