Peru Beyond the Valleys- President’s Pick

Let us share our newest addition to our Presidents Pick Collection… Presented by our very own Flat Ash, a digital avatar of Big Five’s President.

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President’s Picks

COUNTRIES VISITED

Peru

STARTING AT..

Price starts at 750.00 Land per person, per day, double occupancy.

TOUR LENGTH

10

Tour Highlights/Full Description

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A ​10-Day Peruvian Exploration of Culinary Fusion, Cultural Awareness, engaging in local experiences, and venturing on a once-in-lifetime Thrilling Ferrata Ziplining Adventure with Spectacular Snow-capped mountain views of Mt. Verona.

 

Cultural Immersion in Sacred Valley  Visit Awamaki for Pre-Incan weaving insights. and witness the richness of alpaca wool textile and marvel at the unparalleled elegance of vicuna fur, an absolute must-see.

Nature in Cocachimba:  Imagine hiking or horse riding to one of the tallest waterfalls in the world. Gocta Waterfalls is a sight to be remembered.

Indulge in Culinary Urban Delights of fusion Peruvian foods in Cusco with our very own local guide for an authentic experience.

A Chachapoyas Discovery: Explore the Leymebamba Museum and visit the rich culture and traditional weaving workshop of the Amawki women.

Conquer 100m suspension bridge, navigating a secure 300m rock face via Ferrata and soaring like a condor on a thrilling zipline 400m above the Sacred Valley, guided by certified experts—an accessible and exhilarating once-in-a-lifetime

Day 1: Lima/Cusco/Sacred Valley, Peru

Welcome to Peru!

Experience a seamless journey upon your arrival in Lima, Peru! Navigate through Immigration and Customs with ease. As you claim your luggage, anticipate a personalized welcome from a Big Five representative in the Customs Hall, identifiable by a sign bearing your last name. Our dedicated representative will accompany and guide you to the domestic area for a hassle-free check-in for your Cusco flight.

Upon arrival in Cusco, you will be greeted and transferred to your next destination, immersing yourself in the lush beauty of the Sacred Valley of the Incas (Urubamba Valley). En route, indulge in a brief stop at Awanacancha, offering an enchanting encounter with the Andean camelids – llamas, alpacas, vicunas, and guanacos. Admire the thick wool of alpacas, widely used for textiles, and appreciate the delicate fur of vicunas, considered the world’s finest.

Your journey completes at the Sol y Luna hotel, where the charm of individually decorated ‘casita’ houses crafted from local stone awaits your check-in. Surrounded by gardens adorned with native flora from the Sacred Valley, each of the forty-three private sanctuaries faces the awe-inspiring Andes Mountains, believed by the Incas to be the dwelling place of their gods. Embrace the essence of luxury and comfort in this unique haven.

Profits and the generosity of guests, friends, and benefactors wholly finance the Sol y Luna Association, which pursues inclusion and equality through education for the children of the Sacred Valley, along with sustainable work opportunities for local families. Sol y Luna Hotel – Casita (B,L,D)

 

Day 2: Sacred Valley / Machu Picchu/ Sacred Valley

Machu Picchu 

An early morning adventure with a private land transfer to the Ollantaytambo rail station, where the captivating journey to Aguas Calientes begins aboard the Vistadome 31 morning train, a highlight of any Andean expedition. Marvel at the ever-changing landscape during this 1 ½ hour ride, offering breathtaking vistas of majestic mountains and the serene Urubamba River winding through the dramatic canyon of the Sacred Valley. Machu Picchu, the Lost City of the Incas, stands as one of the Americas’ wonders.

Upon reaching Machu Picchu, a seamless transfer via small buses awaits, guiding you to the esteemed Hotel Belmond Sanctuary Lodge for a delightful lunch experience at noon.

Afterward, continue on a guided exploration, walking to the entrance of the ruins to commence your tour. Machu Picchu rises to an altitude of 7,900 ft. above sea level between the Huayna Picchu (young peak) and Machu Picchu (old peak). It lies within the spectacular framework provided by the exuberant vegetation of the nearby jungle and the rugged landscape. The ruins are situated on the eastern slope of Machu Picchu in two different areas: the agricultural and the urban. The latter includes the civil sector (dwellings, canalizations), and the sacred sector (temples, mausoleums, squares, royal houses). Although constructions show different levels of architecture, religious buildings exhibit a high degree of perfection. The construction was generally made of stone, and the roofs were built of tree trunks thatched with Ichu straw. The walls were made with an inward inclination for protection against earthquakes.

Later in the afternoon, savor some teatime at the Belmond Sanctuary Lodge Hotel, indulging in a moment of relaxation in this enchanting setting.

Afterward, board the Hiram Bingham train for a picturesque return to the Sacred Valley. Upon arrival at Ollanta station, a private transfer ensures your comfort as you return to the hotel, concluding a day of awe-inspiring exploration. Sol y Luna Hotel – Casita (B,L,D)

 

Day 3: Sacred Valley

Awamaki 

We begin on a captivating morning adventure following breakfast for an approximately one-hour journey into the Andes. Navigating unpaved roads on a picturesque drive that ascends nearly 1,000 meters (3,281 feet) into the heart of a vibrant Quechua community.

Embrace an insightful and intimate community by visiting and gaining a deep understanding of Pre-Incan weaving traditions and the rich tapestry of Andean indigenous culture. Explore the cooperative weaving center, where a comprehensive demonstration awaits. Witness the intricate process, from hand-spinning alpaca or sheep wool into yarn to using local plants for natural dyes, and finally, the skillful weaving of yarn into the finished product. Post-demonstration, seize the opportunity to try your hand at weaving under the guidance of skilled artisans.

Founded by Seattle native Kennedy Leavens in early 2009, the non-profit Awamaki project commenced with a vision to enhance opportunities for women and their communities. With a modest team, a few volunteers, and ten women weavers, the project aimed to uplift women by connecting them to markets through a store, wholesale business, and a tourism program. Presently, nearly 200 women across eight artisan villages are adapting to the challenges of today’s world and actively improving their lives and their children’s lives.

As the afternoon unfolds, indulge in a delectable lunch experience prepared by the talented knitting women. Revel in the flavors of their culinary expertise while sharing their hospitality’s warmth—a genuine and heartwarming conclusion to a day enriched with cultural immersion.

Sky Vertical 

Via Ferrata, Bridge Crossing, and Zip Line Descend Experience

Following lunch, continue your journey to the Sky Vertical adventure for an unforgettable experience! Conquer a 100m suspension bridge suspended 400m above the Sacred Valley, navigate a secure 300m rock face via Ferrata climbing 400m, and soar like a condor on a thrilling zipline with direct views of snow-capped Mount Veronica. This once-in-a-lifetime adventure, guided by certified experts, offers spectacular mountain scenery and is designed for individuals with little or no climbing experience, making it an accessible and exhilarating activity for all.

Afterwards, you’ll be transported to Cusco and seamlessly check in at your hotel.

*Considered a historic landmark, Palacio del Inka, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Cusco is housed within a 500-year-old mansion in the heart of Cusco, Peru. The luxury hotel boasts a unique, captivating design that embraces traditional aspects of Peruvian culture while providing world-class luxury and modern conveniences. Find stone archways, Hispanic art and ornate gilded antiques throughout our Cusco hotel.

Diner at Belmond Hotel Palacio Nazarenas. Palacio del Inka- Luxury Collection Hotel (B,L,D)

 

Day 4 Cusco / Lima

Urban Food experience with Cristian

Visit the City’s highlights and learn the different ways of living in Cuzco; accompanied by Cristian, you will learn how the current life of the locals is intertwined with the customs inherited from their ancestors, creating an authentic culture.

After a day of touring, you will be transferred to the airport to board your flight to Lima. Upon arrival, you will check in at your hotel, where you will experience Japanese dining in the evening. Country Club Hotel Lima – (B,L,D)

 

Day 5: Lima/Chachapoyas / Leymebamba

Beginning this early morning, you are transferred to the airport to board your flight to Lima and connect to the flight to Chachapoyas.

Upon arriving at the Chachpoyas airport, your guide will welcome you and take you on a 3-hour drive to your lovely ecolodge in Leymebamba, Rangra Wasi. En route, you’ll be driven through the gorgeous Utcubamba Valley, the territory of the ancient Sachapuyu, inhabitants of the cloud forest. Your guide will provide a short briefing about the itinerary and the upcoming adventure.

After checking in, enjoy a delicious farm-to-table lunch made with organic ingredients sourced directly from their own garden, and you’ll have some free time to relax.

Weaving Workshop

An afternoon visit with Isabel and participating in a traditional weaving workshop. Unlike the use of a semi-automated loom, the women in this region weave with a traditional device that is secured around their waist. The weaver then sits on a small bench, fastens the other end of the weaving to a pole, and begins the intricate process. Isabel will teach you everything, from obtaining the cotton and spinning of yarn to dyeing it with natural dyes and finally weaving it. Later, you will enjoy a nice dinner together. Rangra Wasi Lodge– Bosque Azul Lodge – (B,L,D)

 

Day 6: Leymebamba

Woodcarver Workshop and Leymebamba Museum 

Start your day on a captivating journey to the Leymebamba Museum, a treasure trove boasting an extraordinary collection of ceramics, textiles, and over 200 mummies rescued from the challenging Laguna de los Condores mausoleums. Established in 2000, this museum stands as the sole dedicated institution recounting the history of the Chachapoya people, predating the Inca arrival in 1470. Guided by an expert, delve into the museum’s impressive displays, unraveling the customs, beliefs, and practices of the ancient Chachapoya civilization.

Afterward, join expert Chachapoyas culture and artifacts enthusiast Miguel Huaman, for a unique art workshop that showcases traditional techniques. Inspired by his involvement in discovering and rescuing the mummies at Laguna de los Cóndores, Miguel has dedicated his time to studying the wooden jars, instruments, and other objects of the Chachapoyas culture and creating wooden replicas. During the workshop, participants will receive small wooden replicas and learn how to paint them using traditional Chachapoyas techniques.

Enjoy lunch at a local house in Leymebamba, followed by a leisurely afternoon to bask in the tranquil lifestyle of the town. For those intrigued, a brief town walk offers glimpses into local culture. Immerse yourself in this enriching experience, connecting with the rich heritage of the Chachapoya people. Rangra Wasi  or  Bosque Azul Lodge –  (B,L,D)

 

Day 7: Leymebamba / Cocachimba

Kuelap & Milpuj, private conservation area

Get set for a highly anticipated highlight of your journey! An early start marks the beginning of an exhilarating adventure to explore the awe-inspiring Kuelap fortress, renowned as the final bastion of the Chachapoyas civilization. Navigate through a scenic valley towards the town of Tingo, where a cable car ascent awaits, providing a unique perspective on the journey to Kuelap. Revel in breathtaking views during the cable car ride to the mountain’s summit, where Kuelap proudly stands.

The grandeur of Kuelap unfolds with its massive 20-meter-high walls and commanding position overlooking the valley, offering profound insights into its historical significance. This archaeological masterpiece seamlessly integrates meticulous stonework with the breathtaking natural beauty of the surroundings, making Kuelap a truly unparalleled treasure waiting to be discovered.

After exploring Kuelap, descend to the Utcubamba valley and visit Milpuj, a 60-hectare private conservation area aimed at preserving the fragile dry forest of the Uctubamba region, along with its flora and fauna. Perico, the owner of the property, will greet you and lead you on a walk to explore this fascinating place. As you stroll through the forest and encounter imposing utcubambense cacti, bromeliads, and other native trees, you will explore some archaeological remains hidden beneath the dense vegetation and learn about the fragile ecosystem that lies between the cloud forest and the dry forest. This area is home to some iconic species such as the Leopardo Garlepi and Leopardo Tigrinus. After your exploration and lunch, you continue your journey with a 2-hour drive to Cocachimba.

Upon arrival, you will have time to relax and enjoy the beauty while gazing at the breathtaking views of the Gocta Waterfall right before you. Gocta Natura Reserve – (B,L,D)

 

Day 8:Cocachimba

Karajia and Molinos de Piedra: From Cliffside Sarcophagi to Cultural Encounters and Bread-Making 

Start your day heading towards Karajia, a unique funerary site located on the side of a huge cliff. To reach Karajia, you will be driven to the nearby town and then hike for 45 minutes to a viewpoint from where you’ll be able to admire these striking icons that have been overlooking the valley for over 750 years! This Sarcophagus has an enormous size of up to 3 meters high and sculptured forms like humans. You’ll have the opportunity to engage in a holistic approach to rural community tourism, aimed not just at witnessing the wonders of Karajia but also at actively participating in immersive experiences that seek to revive and celebrate cultural traditions while deepening your understanding of the rich Chachapoyas culture.

Afterward, You will have lunch in the small town of Luya before reaching your next adventure of the day, the authentic Molinos de Piedra, where you can learn about the entire process of bread preparation, from wheat planting, harvesting, selection, threshing, grinding, kneading, and baking. The Molino de Piedra is a limestone mill that has been producing its own energy since 1955, all through hydraulic energy and handmade techniques. It’s an interesting stop to witness the traditional methods used to produce food in this region. Conclude your adventure as you journey back to Cocachimba. Gocta Natura Reserve – (B,L,D)

 

Day 9: Cocachimba

Hike to Gocta Waterfall 

Start your day with a stunning view of Gocta waterfall from your room. Enjoy a delectable organic breakfast before embarking on a 3-hour hike to the renowned Gocta Waterfall, standing around 771 meters (2520 ft) tall—one of the world’s tallest falls. This 6km hike spans from cultivated fields to the cloud forest, where you may encounter the yellow-tailed woolly monkey, mountain sloth, and the majestic cock-of-the-rock, Peru’s national bird. If walking is not your preference, we offer on-site horse riding for your convenience.

Remember to bring your swimsuit for a refreshing dip in the cool waterfall waters! Spend your afternoon indulging in the lodge’s amenities—take a rejuvenating plunge in the pond with a view of Gocta, stroll through the lush gardens, or unwind in the serene surroundings of the property. Gocta Natura Reserve – (B,L,D)

 

Day 10: Cocachimba / Chachapoyas /Lima Depart 

Today, we say Adios!… Your departure day begins with a friendly greeting and pick-up for a one-hour drive to Chachapoyas’s local airport, marking the beginning of your flight back to Lima. Upon arrival, you will experience the rich Japanese/Peruvian culture shown through a gastronomy experience. Later, smoothly transition to the airport for your journey back home.

Upon arrival in Lima, your adventure concludes with a farewell lunch at Hotel B, marking the perfect end to your unforgettable journey. (B)

Price Per Diem. USD 750.00 per person per day, double occupancy

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