14 days

Inca Tales & Trails - Family Adventure

Inca Tales & Trails - Family Adventure

UNESCO World Heritage-listed historic centre of the Peruvian capital Lima

Warminwanusca - 'Dead Woman’s Pass' on the Inca Trail

UNESCO World Heritage-listed ancient Inca capital of Cusco

The towering Inca citadel at Ollantaytambo

The colourful market town of Pisac

The 'Lost City of the Incas' - UNESCO World Heritage-listed Machu Picchu

Trip rating
  • Lima’s Church of San Francisco was built in 1673 in the baroque-style, characterised by gilded side altars and a spectacular lattice dome. But most visitors come to see the catacombs underneath. Containing an estimated 70,000 bodies, the catacombs were discovered in 1943 and are part of Lima’s first cemetery. Undertakers doused the bodies in quicklime which caused them to quickly be reduced to skeletons. The bones were then stacked in unique patterns. Not for the faint-hearted!

    Itinerary

    Day 1 - Lima

    Discovered in 1535 by Francisco Pizarro, Lima was the principal city of Spanish South America for 300 years until the wave of independence swept the continent. You stay in the pleasant coastal suburb of Miraflores where shady parks, bustling cafes and the South Pacific coastline all lie within easy reach. Hotel Antigua Miraflores (AA) - 1 night.

    Day 2 - Lima - Cusco

    This morning, you will get a chance to visit the city on a bus tour which will take you through the archeological museum and the infamous Catacombs underneath San Francisco church.In the afternoon, you'll take a short flight from Lima to Cusco. Cusco, once the imperial capital, was laid out in the rough shape of a puma. Today, its orderly streets bear witness to the extraordinary skill of Inca stonemasons; many are still lined with precisely interlocked stonework, which serves as the foundation for later buildings from the colonial era, creating an atmospheric pastiche of contrasting architectural styles

    Breakfast

    Day 3 - Cusco

    This morning you visit the fortress of Sacsayhuaman lying just outside Cusco city. The skilfully constructed outer walls consist of massive blocks of stone (the largest weighing over 350 tonnes) which must have been difficult to manoeuvre, let alone to cut and dress with such precision. The tour continues on foot in the city centre and reveals more of Cusco’s historical and archaeological treasures. The rest of the day is free to relax or further explore Cusco. The rest of the afternoon, and the following day, is free. There are many adventure activities to do in the Sacred Valley around Cuzco. Alternatively, Cuzco is a great place to sit and people-watch, or there are numerous museums to explore.is free to relax or further explore Cusco.

    Breakfast

    Day 4 - Urubamba River

    Free day. 

    Breakfast

    Day 5 - Sacred Valley (Yucay)

    In the morning you transfer to the Sacred Valley. With its warm climate and fertile soil, the Sacred Valley was considered the greenhouse of the Incas, who built many towns and agricultural terraces along its length. Small farming hamlets dot a landscape of patchwork fields; many are still ploughed by oxen and other beasts of burden. En route you reach the village of Pisac (2950m), where you can stop and explore the traditional market and the Inca ruins overlooking the town. This is your first taste of Inca architecture - the ruins stick out on a pinnacle overlooking the valley whilst steep terraces sweep around the hillside. Your hotel is located in the heart of the beautiful Sacred Valley (2800m), in a quiet farming village.

    Breakfast

    Day 6 - Chinchero

    Today you will start to prepare for the Inca trail, with a walk up to the village of Chinchero. Leaving the fertile Sacred Valley behind, you follow a newly reopened section of Inca road up the Urquillos Valley, climbing 900m in about four hours to reach the high altitude plains of Chinchero (3760m). This route is rarely walked by tourists and offers great views of the Vilcanota range and hopefully a chance to spot some birdlife such as parrots and hummingbirds. At Chinchero the villagers are famous for their skills in weaving and they can be seen in traditional dress tending their fields. In the afternoon, you can explore the village, where the people of Chinchero offer their textiles in a colourful local market, visit the painted church and investigate the Inca ruins. Tonight you will sleep in a village house and stay with a local family.

    Breakfast

    Day 7 - Sacred Valley (Ollantaytambo)

    Our destination today is the Inca town of Ollantaytambo (2760m), the gateway to the Inca Trail trek.
    The town of Ollantaytambo has been built over an ancient Inca town, which is a magnificent example of Inca urban planning. This is one of the few places where the Incas defeated the Spanish.
    Breakfast

    Day 8 - Inca Trail -

    Today you visit the ruins of Ollantay, the only Inca stronghold ever to have resisted persistent Spanish attacks. The steep terraces cling to the mountainside, supposedly in the shape of a llama with a large rock outcrop forming the pack baggage. Right on the ridge with commanding views of the valley, the temple area appears to have never been completed and it is possible to gain a fantastic insight into how these incredible structures were built. This is good preparation for the trail which you will start after your visit to the ruins. You set off to Chilca, where the Urubamba gorge narrows, forcing us to abandon motor transport. Here you meet your trail crew and begin the trek. Heading away from the river, a gentle climb soon brings you to a pleasant campsite at Llactapata (2850m), overlooked by ruins. This is camping made easy: as you walk, you carry only a daypack whilst an experienced team of porters carries all other equipment for you. You will be provided with a duffle bag in which to put items needed for the trek. Anything you don’t need is left behind in Cusco in your main bag. You camp in spacious tents; porters, with the assistance of a cook and helper, do all camp chores. A toilet tent is provided at camp and at each lunch stop.

     

    Approx. 4-5 hours easy walking today.

    Breakfast | Lunch | Dinner

    Day 9 - Inca Trail -

    You are woken with a hot drink and a bowl of warm water at your tent to prepare for what will be the most demanding climb of the trek. You follow the course of the Cusichaca River, ascending a broad valley to the village of Wayllabamba (3,000m), the last human habitation on the trail. Your porters go ahead and prepare your lunch which will be waiting close to the summit. The trail steepens through fertile cloud forest and eventually onto high altitude grassland. Finally you reach the highest point of the entire trail, called Warmiwañusca or Dead Woman’s Pass, located at 4200m. We pause to rest and enjoy the views before starting a steep descent into the valley below and our camp at Pacaymayo (3700m)

     

    About 6/7 hrs demanding walk mostly uphill.

    Breakfast | Lunch | Dinner

    Day 10 - Inca Trail

    Our ascent this morning leads past a fine set of ruins to Runkuracay Pass (3998m); from here the trail is largely downhill! The vegetation changes as you walk through areas of cloud forest that mark the outer edges of the Amazon Jungle. You cross the Aobamba River below the Sayacmarca ruins, which overlooks it from a rocky spur. A final easy ascent over a lower pass, with spectacular views over the Urubamba Valley far below, takes you to the campsite, perched above Phuyupatamarca ruins.

     

    About 6 hours moderate walking today.

    Breakfast | Lunch | Dinner

    Day 11 - Machu Picchu

    You awake to a spectacular vista and set off this morning on one of the most beautiful parts of the trail. Excitement mounts as you conquer a steep flight of steps and arrive at Inti Punku, the Gateway of the Sun where you aim to stop for a well deserved packed lunch. The toil of the day is forgotten at a stroke as you are treated to a spectacular view of Machu Picchu below. After lingering to admire the panorama, you walk through the site and catch a bus down the narrow access road. You rejoin the Urubamba River in the village of Aguas Calientes where you check in to your accommodation and enjoy a well-earned, long shower.

     

    About 5 hours walking today, mostly downhill.

    Breakfast | Lunch

    Day 12 - Machu Picchu & Cusco

    Rising early this morning, you return to the Machu Picchu ruins which you will have largely to yourself before the train brings in day-visitors from Cusco. Your guided tour will unravel the magnificent lost city rediscovered by American archaeologist Hiram Bingham in 1911, which stands on a high saddle dominated by the jungle-clad peak of Wayna Picchu. You have time to explore the citadel and enjoy nearby walks before catching the late afternoon train back to Cusco

    Breakfast

    Day 13 - Cusco

    Today is a free day in the Gold city to recover from the Inca Trail and immerse in this vibrant place. You could practice your bargain skills and the craft markets or visit colonial Spanish churches built by the Incas and search for the indians print or enjoy a well deserved massage

    Breakfast

    Day 14-15 - Cusco

    Perhaps visit Machu Picchu for a second time.

    Return to Cusco by train.

    Day 15 there are no activities planned, you may fly out at anytime.

    Breakfast
  • What to Know

    What's Included

    • Tour leader, local guides, arrival transfer, transport, porterage on Inca Trail trek, sightseeing, entrance and park fees.

    Not Included

    • International flights, airport departure taxes, visas where required, meals not included in the itinerary, insurance, laundry, any optional tours or activities during free time, tips and items of a personal nature.
  • Map Itinerary

  • Past Travellers' Ratings & Comments

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Trip at a glance

Trip Code PTFA
Group size 4 - 20
Start City: Lima
End City: Cusco

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