You arrive smack-bang into the epicentre of archaeological America: Cuzco, the gateway to Machu Picchu. To get your bearings, there’s a walking tour to explore the cobblestone passages and see the collision of ancient-meets-modern life. Then you’ll return to the Xima Cuzco Hotel, opposite the handicraft market. Tonight, there’s a meeting, but definitely not your average workday kind. You’ll gather with your group for a briefing about the adventures ahead (and no, there’s no need for minute-taking).
It’s all about Peruvian food today, starting with a visit to the San Pedro market. It’s lively, vibrant place with rows and rows of stalls. You’ll chat with the locals, try some fruits, /chuta/ bread, and perhaps even a serving of frog soup. In the afternoon you’ll learn about the different plants and herbs used in Peruvian cooking and more about traditional food and drink. Then feast on your self-prepared food.
You’ll leave the city clamour behind today, venturing north to the Sacred Valley - a corner of the Andes known for its remote villages, markets and Inca citadels. You’ll be cycling through this scenic wonderland today, first stopping at Moray. This archaeological site is characterised with deep amphitheatre-style terraces. It was once thought to be an Incan agricultural research centre, where crop experiments were carried out at different heights. Your cycle ride continues 6km to Salineras de Maras, a dreamlike site of thousands of salt pans created from a hot spring at the top of the valley. Tonight, you’ll stay at the 17th century San Agustin Monasterio La Recoleta.
There’s a visit to Agritourism association of Chichubamba today, a rural community. Here, you’ll work alongside the locals preparing /pachamanca/, a traditional dish that’s baked over hot stones and covered with stones and earth for an hour or two. While it’s cooking, you’ll visit some homes and see the local produce of pottery, chocolate and coffee. Then it’s back to uncover the /pachamanca/ for lunch. In the afternoon, you’ll visit the Pisac Ruins, a sweeping (and lesser-explored) Inca fortress for a guided tour. You’ll then hike downhill for 90 minutes to Pisac Market in the bustling village.
You’ll take the train to the village of Ollantaytambo today. You’ll descend a 2km Inca stone staircase, with mountains as a backdrop and the Urubamba River below. After a stop at the ruins of Wiñay Wayna, you’ll walk through cloud forest high above the river to Inti Punku, the Sun Gate. From here you’ll get your first full sight of Machu Picchu, with Huayna Picchu rising behind. Then you’ll descend to Aguas Calientes, a town below the ruins, for a well-earned rest. You’ll stay at Hatun Inti Classic for the next two nights.
To beat the day-trippers arriving from Cuzco, you’ll set off early for Machu Picchu. Hidden and forgotten until it was rediscovered in 1911, Machu Picchu is an archaeological masterpiece. Commanding a spectacular location, this ancient city is a sight that will be seared in your memory for life. New regulations mean that visitors have four hours on-site and follow a set route with a guide. The afternoon is yours. Later, you’ll take a Pisco Sour cocktail class in Aguas Calientes. Because frankly, you can’t return home from Peru without becoming an expert in this iconic drink.
You’ll make your way back to Cuzco today, by taking the train to Ollantaytambo and then the bus on to the city. You’ll have time for a breather before joining your group for an uphill walk to Sacsayhuaman Archaeological Park for a tour of this Inca fortress. Afterwards, you’ll walk to San Blas for a chocolate-making workshop. You’ll learn to make chocolate from the cacao bean and prepare chocolate-based drinks that the Mayas and Conquistadores enjoyed.
Set an early alarm – you’ll be collected at 5.30 am to board a bus bound for Phulawasipata. It’s a three-hour journey with the last hour on a bumpy, unpaved road, taking you (literally) off the beaten track. From here, you'll trek up Vinicunca, or Rainbow Mountain as it's more famously known. This mountain has become an undisputed Instagram star thanks to its multicoloured mineral stripes, and its popularity has surged. To get the best views of the rainbow effect, you’ll have to hope the weather is kind. You'll hike for 90 minutes, starting at 4,600m and climbing to reach a lofty 5,000m. Don't forget to stop to appreciate the views and the snow-capped peak of Ausangante in the distance, before returning downhill for another 90 minutes to the bus that'll drive you back to Cuzco (with a well-earned lunch stop en route). It's a long and physically demanding day at these heights, but you whould be well acclimatised at this stage in the trip. For anyone unsure, there's an option to opt out and spend further time in Cuzco today instead.
A final breakfast, before you part with your group and return home.
* Eight nights in en suite hotels
* Airport transfers
All breakfasts, four lunches and one dinner included
* Eight nights in en suite hotels
* Airport transfers
Although graded Moderate (level 3), the altitude can make physical activity
feel more tiring than at sea level. The altitude on the Rainbow Mountain walk
is significant and makes this one day a more strenuous grade than the rest of
the itinerary. However, as this walk is on the final day of the trip you
will have had plenty of time to acclimatise and it shouldn’t be an issue
for most. It is also possible to skip this activity and spend the day in
Cuzco (there are plenty of things to do in and around the city to keep you
occupied!) if you prefer or are struggling with the altitude.
The walk on Rainbow Mountain starts at 4600m and climbs to a maximum of 5000m
– please ensure your travel insurance covers you up to this altitude.
As this trip spends considerable time at altitude we ask you to refer to the
Altitude Warning within the Trip Notes for more information and advice on how
to limit the effects of altitude sickness.
*Inca Trail Regulations*
There are a number of important regulations regarding the Inca Trail that we
would like to make you aware of:
* Spaces on the Inca Trail are on a first-come, first-served basis, so late
bookings can’t always be accommodated. We urge you to book as early as
* In an amendment to our usual Booking Conditions, if you cancel your
booking more than eight weeks before departure and wish to transfer your
deposit to another departure or another trip, the transfer fee is
£150 as we will lose the permit we have purchased on your behalf.
* No transfers are possible within eight weeks of departure.
* So that we can arrange your Inca Trail permit, we need your full name,
passport details, date of birth and nationality, exactly as per the
passport you will be using to travel to Peru.
* Should the passport used to purchase your permit be lost, stolen or expire
before your Inca Trail start date, you must purchase a new passport and
notify Exodus immediately as we will need to apply to amend your Inca
Trail permit. To do so, you must supply copies of both your old and new
passports to Exodus in advance of travel and pay an administration fee of
£25. For this reason, we strongly recommend that you make a copy of your
passport at the time of booking and keep it somewhere safe.
* Please be aware that these regulations may change at any time, and Exodus
is not responsible for the decisions made by Peruvian authorities.
* There is a possibility that the Peruvian authorities may increase the
entrance fees to the Inca Trail, Machu Picchu and other major sights at
any time. If they do so, we will inform you of this increase and the extra
amount will need to be paid locally in cash in Peru
* Inca Trail permits are 'On Request'. If travelling within the current
year, we will try to purchase your permit immediately upon receiving your
booking. If travelling next year, we will apply for your permit as soon as
they are released for sale. In either case, if we are unable to get your
permit, we will contact you to discuss your options.
*Notes about Machu Picchu*
* The tickets are valid only for one entry and re-entering isn’t possible
* Once you have completed the chosen circuit with your guide, you cannot
walk back to view anything already visited
* Once you finish the circuit, you will have to leave the site. You can no
longer explore the site further after the guided tour
* The local authorities have restricted the temples which can visited at
Machu Picchu depending on the time of the visit to the site. On this
itinerary, you will visit the Condor’s Temple, but not the Sun Dial
Temple or the Sun Temple
* On our visits to allow you further time, you will explore the upper part
of Machu Picchu (Sun Gate and Inca Bridge) before starting the guided tour
*San Agustin Monasterio La Recoleta*
A former Catholic monastery built in the 17th century, this boutique hotel is
located in the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Rooms are spacious yet cosy and
well-equipped with TV and free Wi-Fi.
*Xima Hotel *
Xima Hotel is a short walk from Cuzco's main square and just in front of
Cuzco's largest craft market. Rooms are modern with cable TV and free wired
*Hatun Inti Classic *
A well-located hotel for Machu Picchu, Hatun Inti Classic has traditional
style accommodation and free Wi-Fi in public areas.
All breakfasts, four lunches and one dinner included
Exodus Edits offers *FREE* airport arrival and departure transfers on any
flight for this trip, for both Land Only and Flight Inclusive clients. Unless
specified otherwise, the transfer will be to the Exodus Edits start (or
pre-tour) hotel and from the end (or post-tour) hotel, and will be on the
date on which the tour starts/ends; transfers to other hotels in the same
city and/or on different dates may attract an extra charge. Transfers may be
shared with other Exodus Edits customers on the same flight, or on a flight
with similar arrival times. All those taking advantage of the free airport
transfers must provide full flight details for both arrival and departure in
We know that the unexpected can happen. Your plane may get delayed, or things
just don’t go to plan. If you miss your tour departure, check with the
hotel to see if your tour leader has left you a message with details of how
to catch up with your group. If not, call our emergency number (you will find
it on the final joining instructions) and our team will help you. Don’t
forget that you are responsible for any extra travelling expenses incurred if
you miss your tour departure.
Remember, flights aren’t automatically included in your trip. If you’d
like the Exodus Edits team to help you find some good options, give us a call
on +44 020 8772 3837.
* Small overnight bag for Machu Pichu (your main luggage will be kept
securely in Cuzco)
* Sturdy shoes or walking boots
* Warm jacket
* Layers of warm clothing
* Hats for warmth and sun protection
* To cover any additional costs, including meals not included in the
itinerary, we recommend a spending budget of £150-£200, not including
* Food, drinks and similar incidentals can vary in price enormously in Peru
and are relatively expensive compared to other developing nations. Allow
about US$15‐20 per meal not included to eat at good restaurants. Cheaper
food is abundant at small local cafes, although sanitary conditions at
these places cannot be guaranteed. Bottled water and soft drinks are
readily available for around US$1‐2 each.
* Tipping is customary in Peru. Although entirely at your discretion, it
is usually expected. To recognise the help of drivers, local guides, hotel
staff and others, a group tipping kitty (managed by the tour leader)
shared with your group can work well. The contribution per person per day
we suggest is US$5 (PEN 15).
* Our local staff are paid well and fairly for their work with Exodus. If
you wish to tip your group leader in appreciation of their help and
friendliness, we recommend somewhere around US$5 (PEN 15) per person per
day, but customers are encouraged to contribute what they feel happy
giving – either less or more than the amount suggested above.
* Please note that PEN is the preferred currency for tips.
* Travel insurances
* Visas and vaccinations
* Tips for leaders and staff
* International flights
Ved skriftlig aksept av vårt tilbud bekrefter du/dere at våre betingelser er både lest og forstått og at evt kansellerings gebyrer kan tilkomme ved en evt. avbestilling av reisen.