Day-by-Day Itinerary for Peru Trip

Note:  The meals mentioned in parantheses below are are included in the cost of the trip and are provided on the day in which they listed. 

Day 1 – September 15

Upon your arrival at the Lima airport, you will be picked up and transferred to your hotel, the Radisson Decapolis.

Day 2 – September 16

Breakfast at your hotel.

In the morning enjoy a city tour of Lima that starts in the Main Square. Buildings include the Government Palace, the Archbishop’s Palace and the Cathedral dating from 1652 AD.  Then visit the Convent of San Francisco, with the largest collection of religious art in America and with subterranean crypts or Catacombs, where you can feel the presence of Lima’s colonial past.

Your tour continues with a visit to the archaeology museum.  This is Peru’s grandest museum and houses the Estela Raymondi and the Tello Obelisk monuments, two important carved stone pieces dating back to 1000 B.C.   It also houses Peru’s largest textile collection, with fabrics from the Pre-Ceramic period through the Inca Empire and a major collection of Ancient Peruvian metals.   The remarkable Tawantinsuyo Room illustrates one hundred years of the Inca Empire through virtual models and re-creations. At the end of your visit, return to your hotel.

Overnight at the Radisson.  (breakfast)

Day 3 – September 17 Lima to Arequipa

Breakfast at your hotel.

In the morning transfer to the airport to fly to Arequipa.  Upon arrival, you will be transferred to your hotel. The rest of the morning is free.

In the afternoon, you will tour to the center of the city, where you will see the beautiful main square, the cathedral and “La Compañía de Jesús” a church with its own Sistine Chapel.   You will cross the city to visit the colonial district of Yanahuara and will be impressed by the baroque church dating back to the 18th Century.

After that, a visit the Recoleta Convent museum.  This is a beautiful structure built in 1648.  You will be able to admire the Pre-Columbian art rooms, an ethnographic museum and a religious art room.  The jewel of this convent is the Library with more than 20,000 volumes dating from the 15th Century.

Overnight at the El Cabildo Hotel.  (breakfast)

Day 4 – September 18

Breakfast at your hotel.

Depart early in the morning from Arequipa to the town of Yura, going by the Aguada Blanca National Reservation and the Cañahuas Pampas where you can spot vicunas and alpacas, as well as a large variety of exotic birds.

Then continue over the Patapampa Pass, passing high, snow-covered volcanoes.  Around noon arrive at Chivay and transfer to your hotel.

Overnight at Refugio Hotel .  (breakfast and lunch)

Day 5 – September 19

Breakfast and lunch at your hotel.

After an early breakfast, travel to the Colca Canyon, which is more than twice as deep as the Grand Canyon and is called the world’s deepest canyon. The Colca Valley is a colorful Andean valley with towns founded in Spanish colonial times and still inhabited by people of the Collaguas and Cabanas cultures. The local people still maintain ancestral traditions and continue to cultivate the pre-Inca stepped terraces.

You should also be able to observe many majestic condors in flight.  Return to Arequipa at the end of the day.

Overnight at the El Cabildo Hotel.  (breakfast and lunch)

Day 6 – September 20

Breakfast at your hotel.

After breakfast at the hotel, transfer to the airport to take your flight to Juliaca near Puno and Lake Titicaca.

Upon arrival, you will be transferred to your hotel.  The rest of the morning free.  In the afternoon, enjoy a visit to the Chullpas of Sillustani considered the largest and most impressive necropolis of Pre-Columbian America.  Sillustani is a pre-Inca burial ground.  The tombs, are built above ground in tower-like structures called chullpas.

Overnight at Hotel Jose Antonio in Puno. (breakfast)

Day 7 – September 21

Breakfast at your hotel.

Enjoy a full-day excursion to Lake Titicaca, visiting the Uros floating Island.  For visitors to Lake Titicaca, a boat trip to the floating islands is a must.  These islands are made and re-made from totora reeds, which provide home, sustenance and transportation for their residents.  These floating islands are the home of the Uros tribe, which pre-dates the Incan civilization.

Continue your tour into Taquile Island, an essentially communal island famous for the colorful originality of its fabrics and garments and also known all over the world for its music.   Return to your hotel in Puno.

Overnight at Hotel Jose Antonio in Puno.  (breakfast and lunch)

Day 8 – September 22

Breakfast at your hotel.

Depart by tourist bus to Cuzco.

During the journey there will be stops at various tourist attractions laong the way, depending on time constraints, since this is a fairly lengthy ride.   These stops include San Pedro de Andahuaylillas, proudly called by its inhabitants the Sistine Chapel of America for its decorated interior, baroque sculptures and numerous rich paintings and murals done in the famous Cusco School style.

Raqchi, 121 kilometers from Cusco, a monumental Inca temple.  Divided in two naves, each of these still retains the base of eleven giant columns.  The base of the walls consists of Inca stonework with a top section of adobe.  Adjacent to the temple, are many storehouses, used for various purposes, both military and religious.

La Raya is the highest pass on the route between Cusco and Puno, at 4335 meters above sea level.  This is a region situated between two cultures, Quechua and Aymara, as well as a composite of two terrains:  the dry and arid altiplano and the more verdant Quechua valleys and plains.

There will be a stop for a buffet Lunch in Sicuani Village.

Upon arrival transfer to your hotel.

Overnight at Hotel Jose Antonio in Cusco.  (breakfast and lunch)

Day 9 – September 23

Breakfast at your hotel.

After breakfast a guided visit of the city including the main square, surrounded by a beautiful stone arches, the Cathedral and the Convent of Santo Domingo, built above the most important Inca temple, the Temple of the Sun or Koricancha.

Then a visit to the nearby ruins of Sacsayhuaman, made of three gigantic terraces superimposed in zigzag form and surrounded by enormous walls of rock, some of which are up to 300 meters in length.

Other points of interest include Kenko, a religious centre formed by rock with underground galleries and a semicircular amphitheatre with stone seats.  Puca Pucara or the “Red Fort” was a military base made of stone stairways, terraces and walls.  Tambomachay, known as the Baths of the Incas, is dedicated to the cult of water and formed by aqueducts, channels and small cascades worked into the rock.

Overnight at Hotel Jose Antonio in Cusco.  (breakfast)

Day 10 – September 24

Breakfast at your hotel.

In the morning visit the colorful crafts market in the town of Pisac.

After lunch in a local restaurant, visit the Ollantaytambo fortress.  The Ollantaytambo Fortress is just on the outskirts of the old town, and though its primary intention was rather benign, it has an overwhelmingly forbidding air about it.  Among the Ollantaytambo ruins that are the most visually spectacular are the rising terrace walls, which served as an integral means of defense, something that would come in handy upon the arrival of the Spanish Conquistadors.

Then visit Chinchero, a town with a very lovelycentral square, which provides an opportunity to contrast its church and the Inca niches, on which the church was built.

The result is a mixed Inca – Spanish colonial architecture that makes a lasting impression.

At the end of the tour, you will be transferred to your hotel in the Sacred Valley.

Overnight at Hotel Sonesta Posada Yucay in the Sacred Valley.  (lunch and breakfast)

The hotel is in a former 18th-century colonial-style monastery.

Day 11 – September 25

Breakfast at your hotel.

You will be transferred to the train station in order to take your vistadome train to Aguas Calientes.  The train trip itself should be one of the highlights of the whole trip.  It lasts around three hours and follows a scenic river valley.

On arrival transfer to your hotel in Aguas Calientes, near Machu Picchu.

El Mapi Hotel.  (breakfast)

Day 12 – September 26

Breakfast at your hotel.

With an early start after breakfast, travel by bus to the Machu Picchu citadel, called the “Lost City of the Incas.  The Incas started building the “estate” around AD 1400 but abandoned it as an official site for the Inca rulers a century later at the time of the Spanish Conquest.  Although known locally, it was unknown to the outside world before being brought to international attention in 1911 by the American historian Hiram Bingham.   Since then, Machu Picchu has become an important tourist attraction.

Because the site was never known to the Spanish during their conquest, it is highly significant as a relatively intact cultural site.  Machu Picchu was declared a Peruvian Historical Sanctuary in 1981 and a Unesco World heritage Site in 1983.

You will have plenty of time to discover the wonders of Machu Picchu.

In the afternoon, depart to Cuzco by train and transfer to your hotel.

Overnight at Hotel Jose Antonio in Cusco.  (breakfast and lunch)

Day 13 – September 27

Breakfast at your hotel.

After breakfast transfer to the airport for your flight to Lima

Upon arrival, you will be transferred to your hotel.

In the afternoon you will be picked up at the hotel for a visit to the Magic Water Show (“Circuito Magico Del Agua”) held at Parque de la Reserva.

Here is one description of this show from trip advisor.com:

I’ve seen the Disney Water Magic shows but Lima’s Magic Water Show blows Disney away.  Lima’s show, about 45 minutes long, is an exceptional display of waters choreographed to music and features computerized light designs displayed against the swirling, twirling waters from the fountains which are spread over four or five acres.

To top off your last full day in Lima you will be treated to a Peruvian folkloric musical and dinner at a well-known restaurant called Junius, considered one of the best in town.

Finally back to your hotel for a good night’s sleep.

Dinner and overnight at the Radisson Decapolis.  (dinner and breakfast)

Day 14 – September 28

Breakfast at your hotel.

Since most international flights leave Lima at night, we decided to avoid the necessity of vacating the hotel at noon and sitting around the airport.  You will be able to keep your hotel rooms at the Radisson until it is time to leave for the airport in the evening or at night, depending on your flight times.  In the afternoon you will be picked up at the hotel and driven to a fine restaurant, where you will be given a nice buffet lunch.  You will also have time for some last-minute shopping.

Towards the end of the day you will again be picked up at the hotel in time to get to the airport for your return flight home.

Radisson Decapolis.  (breakfast and lunch)

End of tour.