Authentic Peru !
We were fortunate to come across a discussion containing high praise for a tour company called Chaska Tours (www.chaskatours.com). We worked with Pieter and Rocio Valcarcel. (Pieter is actually Dutch, but he speaks and e-mails in excellent English.) They put together an excellent itinerary (at the last minute and during high season in mid-August) with all private, selected guides during our entire trip.
Local people and indigenous communities in Peru
Our Authentic Peru program are designed for those looking for a vacation full of living experiences visiting highlights in Peru, local villages and indigenous communities. We firmly believe that participatory tourism with local people and people from indigenous communities will allow the tourist to get a much deeper knowledge of Peru’s rich cultural diversity and ancestral history.
In the mountains (Andes highlands) and in the jungle of Peru, there are many indigenous communities. These indigenous communities save the dates, of much ancient knowledge of traditional medicine, ethno-botany, ancient techniques of agriculture, textile art, carved in stone, Andean religion, food and other super experiences.
Highlights of Authentic Peru
- Lima’s Historical Center declared a World Heritage by Unesco
- Learn about the camelids of Peru and it's wool in Arequipa, the world capital of alpaca wool, the Santa Catalina Monastery and Juanita - the Ice Princess.
- Spot condors in Colca Canyon, the deepest Canyon in the world
- Family stay in an Eco Lodge on Ticonata Island in Lake Titicaca
- Set sail in a traditional boat to Amantani island
- Explore Cusco with a local expert guide
- Learn all about medicinal plants of the Andes at an Indigenous community on an ethnobotanical tour
- Machu Picchu and a free day to climb Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain Peak or a hike to Mandor
Departures:Daily departures year roundDestinations:Lima, Arequipa, Colca Canyon, Puno, Uros/Ticonata/Amantani islands at Lake Titicaca, Cusco, Sacred Valley, Machupicchu.Reservation code:ET-EXP1
- Arrive in Lima. Transfer to the hotel. Overnight in Lima
- City tour Lima, colonial and modern. Overnight in Lima
- Flight Lima/Arequipa, visit the world of Alpaca, city tour and visit of museum Santuarios Andinos. Overnight in Arequipa
- Colca Canon 2d/1n 1st Day, depart from Arequipa en route to the town of Chivay. Overnight in Chivay
- Visit to the Condor Cross. Transfer Chivay to Puno. Overnight in Puno
- Puno-Uros-Llachon-Ticonata Islands (Lake Titicaca 2 Days) Overnight with local family
- Ticonata –Amantani-Puno. Overnight in Puno
- Bus Journey from Puno to Cusco. Visiting different archeological places on the road. Overnight in Cusco
- Cusco City Tour. Overnight in Cusco
- Excursion to the Sacred Valley of the Incas, Indigenous community for Ethnobotanical tour. Overnight with local family or hotel.
- Sacred Valley Tour (Pisac and Ollantaytambo archeological complex)our Sacred Valley, Pisac Ruins, market and Ollantaytambo. Overnight in Sacred Valley
- Early Morning transfer to the train station for your tour of Machu Picchu,. Overnight in Aguas Calientes
- Free day in Machu Picchu, afternoon return to Cusco. Overnight in Cusco
- Free day in Cusco, optional activities. Overnight in Cusco
- Transfer to the airport for your flight to Lima and international flight.
Day 1 Arrival in Lima
Arrive in Lima. Upon arrival in Lima, transfer to your Hotel and check in.
*Please collect your Chaska Tours holiday hotel vouchers that will be waiting for you at the reception desk of the Hotel.
Overnight in Lima
Day 2 Lima - City tour
On this day you will get to know the historic city of Lima, which was founded on January 18, 1535 by the conqueror Francisco Pizarro and was considered, for almost three centuries, as the Vice-Royal Capital of South America. This fantastic city is nowadays an immeasurable mix of cultures, ethnicities, races and bloods. A festival of colors and customs, an immense wealth of folklore and Creole, between the ancient and the modern.
Today we will visit Lima’s Historical Center, which was declared a World Heritage by Unesco in 1988, and a Cultural Patrimony in 1991. We will visit the colonial sites of the Plaza Mayor, the Presidential Palace, the Cathedral, the Archibishop’s Palace. Then visit the San Francisco Monastery and Catacombs.
We continue to modern section and visit the suburbs of San Isidro and Miraflores. On our way we will pass by the Huaca Pucllana, a pre-Inca pyramid shaped temple. We visit the Parque del Amor (Lovers Park) and enjoy refreshing views of the Pacific Ocean as we drive down to the Miraflores Malecon, a road overlooking the ocean. Then return to your hotel and enjoy the rest of the day at your leisure.
Overnight in Lima
Day 3 Arequipa
Transfer to airport. Flight Lima/Arequipa. Upon arrival transfer to Arequipa center.
Well known as the “White City” due to the color of its buildings made from sillar (white volcanic stone), and a picturesque colonial structure, this city has been declared a world heritage site by UNESCO; it is surrendered with an impressive snowy mountains and volcanoes (Misti, Chachani, Pichu Pichu) and the Colca Canyon one of the world’s deepest canyons.
The department of Arequipa is also geographically varied with Andean valleys a several nature reserves and beautifully natural landscapes which became in an interesting place to visit.
In the Afternoon, Visit the world of Alpaca (Here our visitors can appreciate the textile Museum, machinery and the process of choosing alpaca weaving and dyeing, and we can appreciate some Alpacas and llamas. Then we will visit the Main Square, Yanahuara church and observatory, Arequipa´s most important churches, like San Francisco, the Compañia de Jesus’ famous cloisters, colonial houses, and a special visit to the Santa Catalina Convent and Cloisters, we continue to the museum Santuarios Andinos located at La Merced to visit Juanita - the Ice Princess" who was discovered in 1995 by Johan Reinhard, an American Archeologist and his Peruvian climbing partner Zarate during an expedition, just below the peak of the Ampato Mountain. Juanita had been well preserved in ice for more than 500 years before volcanic activity melted the surrounding snow.
Overnight in Arequipa
Day 4 Arequipa / Colca Canon 2d/1n
We depart from Arequipa en route to the town of Chivay, capital of Caylloma. Take in the stunning views of the Misti, Chachani and PichuPichu volcanoes before arriving at the Pampa Cañahuas National Reserve, where we can observe the wild native Vicuñas camels in their natural habitat. Then we proceed to Pata Wasi, an indigenous Andean community located on the reserve.
This is a great place to view the towering Misti and Chachani volcanoes. To ease the discomfort of altitude sickness, local restaurants serve the Andean “Mate de Coca” drink.
From here we will head to Tocra, located at 4500 meters, where you can visit lakes filled with migrant birds and view the Antiplano, with its Llamas and Guanacos. Pata Pampa is the highest point on the tour, at 4800 meters, where the volcanoes Ampato, Sabancaya, Hualca-Hualca, Mismi, and Cordillera de Chila are located. We then head to the town of Chivay to see the magnificent terraces of the Colca valley.
Nearby you can visit the natural hot springs for a relaxing bath. After this exciting day we will bring you to your hotel or lodge.
Overnight in Colca
Day 5 Visit to the Condor Cross. Transfer Chivay to Puno
Enjoy an early breakfast and depart for Cruz del Condor, where you can enjoy the breathtaking views of the canyon and perhaps catch a glimpse of the condor. Here you can take a short-guided walk along the canyon. Afterward, visit the traditional village of Pinchollo and the Antahuilque viewpoint, where 1,500 year-old pre-Inca terraces, constructed by the Collaguas, can be observed.
Then we stop to visit the hanging tombs of Choquetico and visit the litomaqueta, a model of the terraces carved in a rock. From here we head to Maca, an Andean community that experienced an earthquake in 1991, and also a historic church in the village of Yanque. Enjoy a lunch in Chivay on your own expenses before taking the bus to Puno. Arrive in Puno and transfer to your hotel.
Overnight in Puno
Day 6 Puno-Uros-Llachon-Ticonata Islands (Lake Titicaca 2 Days)
In the morning transfer to the harbor where we embark for a boat trip to the famous floating islands of Uros, we step on two of the 60 manmade islands, discovering the fascinating history of this ancient fishing culture, then continue navigating to Llachon, arriving about 11 am. We do a gentle walk on a pre-Inca pathway and enjoy lunch at a local restaurant. Depart from Llachon, after 1-hour ride we arrive at Ticonata, where we are welcomed by the community and accommodated in the eco - village, with conical houses & thatched roofs made as a remembrance of the pre-Incan houses in the region the conical shape and the thatched roofs give the island a unique character. Visit the local museum to see the mummies recently found.
Later on, we will take a short hike to the ancient ritual place, at the top of the hill, even today it is still used by the locals in authentic ancestral ceremonies and the sunsets from up there are simply spectacular. What makes this tourism-based project a genuine sustainable project is that it involves people from the community and they all share the work and the benefits equally.
We will savor a typical dinner, then sit around the bonfire. There are few places where you can breathe the essence of a culture, nevertheless Ticonata is one of these rare gems. Here, one of the wise men will tell us about their magical world and traditions, daily life and customs. All of this, while enjoying the Milky Way and other constellations make for an unforgettable night in the Andes.
Note: Basic facilities, outhouse toilets, only warm shower available.
Important note: Kayak trips are available along the coast of Llachon, before continuing onto Ticonata Island.
Overnight in an Eco Lodge.
Breakfast, lunch and dinner included (Dinner prepared by your local family)
Day 7 Ticonata –Amantani-Puno
After an early breakfast of regional cereals, we set sail for Amantani island with experienced Taft fishermen at the helm. With the west winds behind us, we will arrive at our destination about 2 or 3 hours later depending on the season. You may need to paddle the last bit if necessary, but at any rate our private escort motorboat is ready to assist us if need be. On Amantani Island visit the main village and take a pleasant gentle walk to observe the locals farming and herding. We will have lunch in a local house ( this lunch is not included ) and some time to learn about the culture and people of Amantani. Later we return to return to Puno city by motorboat, arriving at approximately 4.30pm.
Important Note: It is possible to change the visit of Amantani Island for Taquile Island.
Overnight in Puno
Day 8 Bus Puno / Cusco
Early in the morning you will be transferred to the bus station for your tourist hop-on hop-off bus to Cusco in which you will visit 4 archeological sites along the way. This will be a very active and interesting 9 hours journey.
This day long bus ride takes you through snow-covered peaks, high and wide Andean valleys where llamas graze on spiky grass. As you pass by villages with cobblestone streets and you will see people making adobe bricks by hand. On our way to Cusco we will visit the litho-sculptures of Pukara, La Raya, the highest point between Cusco and Puno (14234 feet / 3800 meters), Raqchi, the temple of the God Wiracocha and Andahuaylillas. The church of Andahuaylillas is known as the "Sistine Chapel of America". It is known as one of the best- preserved examples of Andean religious art. Arrival in Cusco and transfer to hotel.
Alternative option: Upgrade to Lake Titicaca train to Cusco available at an additional cost. Train operates Puno to Cusco: Monday, Thursday and Saturday.
Travel in style on the Lake Titicaca train to Cusco. Morning transfer to the local train station of Puno where the train operated by Peru Rail is waiting for your spectacular rail journey to Cusco, which runs on the shores of Lake Titicaca. The glass-walled observation coach provides the perfect opportunity to enjoy the beautiful scenery. The journey is broken by a scenic stop at La Raya, which is also the highest point on the route. First class lunch is served aboard the train in style. A music and fashion show and a bar-tending lesson will also be part of your experience aboard.
Overnight in Cusco
Breakfast and lunch Included.
Day 9 Cusco – Walking tour
Cusco was once the capital of the Incas Empire where you will learn more about the Andean culture as the city itself represents the center of indigenous Quechua culture.
Today you will have the morning free to relax and acclimatize.In the afternoon your guide will meet you to visit the Inca city delegated by UNESCO as a world heritage in 1983.
First, we will visit the Cathedral of Cusco on the Plaza de Armas and continuously the temple of Qoricancha, also known as the temple of the Sun. After these visits, we will continue to the upper part of Cusco to visit several archaeological sites. The first stop will be at Sacsayhuaman, a ceremonial complex of the Incas. We will also visit Qenqo, Puka Pukara and Tambomachay. At the end, we will return to Cusco and drop you off at your hotel.
Note: In private service you will first have a tour by foot through the city, visiting Qoricancha the Inca Sun Temple, the Plaza de Armas and the Cathedral, enjoying the atmosphere of the city by observing the well-preserved colonial architecture that conserves Incas original stone walls, evidence of a rich and complex history. We will continue our way until we get to San Pedro Central Market where the locals shop for Andean grains, fruits, natural medicine plants and more. Afterwards, drive up above Cusco for a visit of the spectacular Sacsayhuaman Inca complex with stupendous stonework, Qenko a place of rituals and then we will visit the house of Sulca to see the lovely textiles made by hand.
Return to your hotel. Rest of the day at your leisure.
Overnight in Cusco.
Day 10 Sacred Valley - Indigenous community - Ethnobotany tour (Secrets of the medicine plants of the Andes).
At 8.30 a.m. we set off from Cusco heading up and over the highlands towards the Sacred Valley of the Incas. We arrive at Pisac situated along the Urubamba River and continue to the Indigenous community. You will enjoy a distinct cultural experience with an ethnobotany tour of traditional medicines. Learn the secrets of the traditional medicine plants of the Indigenous community. Afterwards, we will have an opportunity to share some time with the lovely Indigenous children and their families.
Peru is one of the countries with the highest use of medicinal plants in the world. Even to this day they are still revealing new plants and their uses already known in the past but forgotten in the labyrinths of history. Discover the ancient wealth of knowledge collected about these plants and how they help the daily life of local people.
Experience the healing secrets and hidden beliefs after years of tradition transmitted over the generations, and learn to provide treatment for common diseases. After learning to use plants in their most traditional form, discover how to turn them into ointments, syrups and soaps.
Program activities: Interpretation of Ethnobotany, starting the process, Harvest flowers and leaves of wild plants, preparation plasters, preparation of ointments, preparation of candy.
Afterwards, we will have a delicious typical Andean lunch. Thereafter, relax and partake in a memorable cultural exchange with this kind, beautiful Indigenous community"
Overnight with local family
Breaksfast, Lunch and dinner included (Lunch & Dinner prepared by your local family)
Day 11 Sacred Valley Tour (Pisac and Ollantaytambo archeological complex)
This will be a full day tour where you will enjoy the varied landscapes of the beautiful Valle Sagrado de los Incas, along the way we can see attractive colonial towns and isolated villages of indigenous communities that continue their tradition for weaving, pottery and agriculture. Main attractions will be the handicraft markets and the lofty Inca citadels of Pisac and Ollantaytambo, it is definitely the perfect match between a cultural experience, the andean sunlight and delicious typical food.
This day we will visit first the famous Pisac Colorful Indian market to see the handicrafts and taste delicious empanadas baked in huge typical ovens. Afterwards, continue to the Pisac ruins above the town for a visit of the Sun Temple and admire the many surrounding terraces. We will continue to Urubamba to enjoy lunch, then off to one of the original Inca towns of Ollantaytambo to be amazed by the ruins that sit in front of the quaint town. After a wonderful day you will be drop off to your hotel and enjoy the rest of the night.
Optional: Ceramic Workshop, recommended for families with children.
Overnight in Sacred Valley
Breakfast and lunch included.
Day 12 Train to Machupicchu.
This morning you will ride on the train from Ollantaytambo with breathtaking views to Aguas Calientes. You will check into your hotel and then take the bus to the Sanctuary of Machu Picchu.
In your way up to the Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu you will have spectacular views from the Mountains and the typical flora and fauna of the mysterious Cloud Forest. It is highly recommended to have lunch in Sanctuary Lodge Restaurant located in the entrance of the Citadel, enjoying the atmosphere of this magical place and then have a quiet guided tour after noon, with less crowds and the chance to see the amazing sunrise.
With your Official guide you will visit the enigmatic Citadel of Machu Picchu following a specific route where you will walk through the different sectors such as the Urban and Ceremonial and other places of interest. You will also have time for taking memorable pictures. We are sure that this will be a unique experience!
The Citadel of Machu Picchu was declared by UNESCO a world heritage in 1983. It is believed to have been built in the 15th century and abandoned by the Inca Empire when the Spaniards conquered them. The locals always knew about the ruins and some locals lived around it. The ruins were brought to the world’s attention in 1911. Visit the Sun Temple, the Room of the Three Windows, the Royalty sector and more.
Note: New regulations have been stablished for the visit to Machu Picchu since 2019, according to these statements there are certain schedules for the visit, with the Machu Picchu ticket you can stay 4 hours as maximum in the Citadel. Please notice that Machu Picchu is open from 6:00 am to 5:30pm. aumentar
Overnight in Aguas Calientes
Breakfast and lunch included.
Day 13 Machupicchu free day.
Today you will have free time to explore Machu Picchu on your own pace.
If you have chosen the Inkaterra Machu Picchu Pueblo hotel, you can opt to do one of the various excursions on the hotel grounds which include bird-watching, orchid and nature hikes with specialist guides.
Otherwise, based on your choice you could climb the Huayna Picchu or the Machu Picchu Mountain Peak. This short trek inside the Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu will make your day spectacular! You will hike up through Inca’s original paths that will lead you towards magical places within the Cloud Forest. With every step you will get fascinated by the beautiful views of the famous Andean Mountains. You can have a taste of the real Inca Trail doing this trek and appreciate the architectonic magnificence of the Incas. You have to see it with your own eyes!
Please make sure you check out of your hotel before you leave for the Sanctuary and to pick up your luggage and to be at the train station half an hour before your train’s departure.
Return to Aguas Calientes and enjoy lunch on your own. Then board your train to the Poroy or station. Private transfer to your hotel in Cusco.
Note: Tickets are subject to availability. There are schedules for the visit to one of the Mountains, with the Machu Picchu + Huayna Picchu tickets you can stay inside the Park for 6 hours and with the Machu Picchu + Machu Picchu Mountain Peak ticket for 7 hours maximum. The visit for one of the mountains has a moderate grading that requires a good physical condition although effort is well worth it. The Huayna Picchu hike is easier and takes less time than Machu Picchu Mountain Peak.
Overnight in Cusco
Day 14 Free day in Cusco
Today enjoy a free day in Cusco visiting museums or simply walking down the picturesque streets around the City center. You can get to know the typical neighborhoods of San Cristobal and San Blas where Artisans congregate their shops and galleries, the cheerful and energy of this walk will make you feel the real essence of the City.
It will be a great chance to do shopping as Cusco is well known for its world-famous Alpaca wood clothing not only for their quality but for their design, also you will find Silver and gold shops for fine jewelry and a great offer for handicrafts.
At the end of the afternoon, we recommend you to make a stop to drink a refreshing and delicious Pisco Sour, Peru’s National cocktail. All around Cusco’s city center you will find numerous Bars, Cafes and Restaurants to have a taste of the Peruvian cuisine within a nice atmosphere.
Overnight in Cusco
Day 15 Cusco/Lima & International flight
Transfer to airport Flight Cusco/Lima to connect with your international flight.
Optional: Lima Culinary Tour
Kick the night off by enjoying a Peru food tour that starts with a swanky beachfront cocktail demo at sunset before heading to the Amazon and beyond. Combine the three natural regions of Peru, the coast, the Andes and the jungle with Lima culture on this 5-hour tour of Miraflores and Barranco. After a beachside cocktail-making class where you'll get to know Peru's iconic Pisco Sour, head to the award-winning Amaz restaurant, a favorite of the late Anthony Bourdain, where celebrity chef Pedro Miguel Schiaffino has shared a recipe exclusively for our clients. You'll get to have a go at making your own Amazonian dish accompanied by Lima Gourmet's jungle tasting menu. After learning the secrets of preparing quite a unique dish, you'll get to tuck into an array of delicious Peruvian dishes at the famous Huaca Pucllana restaurant with spectacular views of pre-Incan ruins. Here you'll try the best of top chef Marilú Madueño's take on Peruvian recipes with another menu specially designed only for our guests. Finally, take a nighttime stroll with a quaint walking food tour in Lima, around the bohemian Barranco neighborhood, where you'll finish with a delectable dessert.
End of Services
IncludedHotels included:2 nights in Lima, 1 night in Arequipa, 1 night in Colca, 2 nights in Puno, 1 night with a family in Ticonata, 4 nights in Cusco, 01 night with local family in Indigenous community or Hotel in the Sacred Valley, 1 night in the Sacred Valley, 1 night in AgEntrance tickets:All entrance tickets for the places to visit mentioned in the programExcursions:All excursions mentioned in the programGuide:Official guides during excursionsMachupicchu:Roundtrip bus tickets and entrance tickets to the Sanctuary on day 12Meals:Meals as mentioned in programTrain:Train to Machupicchu (roundtrip)
- Flights:International flights
- Flights: 02 Domestic flights Lima/ Arequipa - Cusco/Lima
- Tips: Tips at airports, hotels and tips for guides, drivers or other personal.
- Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain Peak entrance tickets and round trips bus on day 13
- Insurance: Travel insurance
Occupancy Economic 3* Comfort 4* Luxury 5* Double room US $ US $ US $ Single room supplement US $ US $ US $ 1 Notes:
* Prices for 2022 ( we are working on it)
Contact one of our Experience Travel Consultants to tailor this trip for you or if you have any questions, we are here to help you and strive to respond the same business day.