SALKANTAY TREK, LAKE TITICACA AND COLCA CANYON 18 DAYS
$ 350.00 USD
It is a trip around the largest lake in the world of Titicaca (3,812 meters above sea level), and other Andean places in Peru, where the high-altitude and pastoral wildlife of people living with their animals is found, in silence, apart from the turmoil of the modern world.
One of the new seven wonders of Machu Picchu, an unforgettable destination in Peru makes this tour and an excellent way to discover Inca heritage, Peru offers exquisite natural beauty and archeological sites. You will find valleys that contain endemic, mysterious fauna, archaeological sites half covered by the excessive growth of the jungle, which seems to be discovering that for the first time
Day 01: Arrival to Lima
Arrival to the city of Lima. A Tierras Vivas Representative welcomes you at the airport holding a sheet with your name and takes you to your hotel. No activities are planned for this day.
Day 02: Flight to Cusco
A flight to Cusco and a transfer to your hotel. Cusco is the oldest continuously inhabited city of this continent as well as a hub of the South American travel network! The city attracts people from all around the world, who arrive not only to visit a unique destination, but also to experience an ancient culture that differs a lot from the modern 21st century´s way of life. One could easily spend a week just in and around this site. Inca-built stone walls line most of the central streets and it is not necessary to go far to see other major Incan ruins. This is a city steeped in history, traditions and legends!
Every year, Cusco is visited by thousands of travelers, who come to delve into its noble, but tragic past. It is a perfect base for elective explorations around the city´s surroundings as well as for a range of outdoor activities. You can relax and explore this fascinating city while taking your time to acclimatize to its high altitude.
Day 03: Sacred Valley of the Incas
Today our tour guide takes us into the Sacred Valley of the Incas. The Sacred Valley was the agricultural bread basket for the Incas, with fertile soil, excellent for growing Inca food basics, like maize and potatoes. Today it still supplies Cusco with lots of its production. We visit the majestic ruins of Pisaq as well as its current famous handicraft market. Then we stop in Urubamba, considered to be the capital of the valley, to have a buffet lunch offering Andean cuisine (not included in the tour). Afterwards, we continue to the picturesque town of Ollantaytambo with its Incan fortress before getting ready for our upcoming hike, one of the highlights of the tour!
Ollantaytambo is your first taste of what lies ahead on the Inca Trail. The town and fortress of Ollantaytambo are strategically situated overlooking the beautiful Urubamba River Valley. We spend the night in this small town before heading for the start of the hike on the next morning!
Day 04: Cusco – Soraypampa – Wayracmachay – Los Andenes
Salkantay Trek Machu, will pick up our passengers between 04:15 and 04:45 am. of their respective rooms. The departure of our walk to It is at 05:00 a.m. During our tour in our mobility we will pass through the towns of Izcuchaca and Limatambo arriving at Mollepata at approximately 07:30 am. where we will have our first breakfast, then we will start our hike from Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu arriving to Cruzpata where we will have a little rest, continuing our walk we will go to Soraypampa (first camp)and to enjoy our delicious lunch.
Day 05: Los Andenes – Luscamayo – La Playa
This second day we will wake up very early to enjoy our breakfast, we will leave the camp at 07:00 am approximately, during the whole trip we will appreciate the snow-covered Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu and the different housing constructions of the indigenous people, also we will appreciate their crops and the servant of their animals like the llama and alpaca. On the trek from Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu we will arrive at salkantay pampa and Collpabamba valley where we will have our lunch, After our lunch we will continue the walk to the cloud forest 17500 meters above sea level, where we will appreciate the varieties of orchids and the formations of rivers and waterfalls of great magnitude and also this day we can appreciate the majestic Snow of the Apu Salkantay, reaching Chaullay place where we expect our buffet dinner and overnight.
Day 06: La Playa – Llactapata – Hidrolectrica – Aguas Calientes
This day we will also get up early to enjoy our breakfast, we will begin our walk appreciating a variety of coca crops, considered the sacred leaf of our ancestors which is currently cultivated in tropical zones, this last stretch will be descent to Playa and There we take a transport to Santa Teresa, then we get to Hidroeléctrica. At Hidroeléctrica we start again with our route to get to Aguas Calientes or you can also take the train that departs from Hidroélectrica to Aguas Calientes (Optional Service). Where we will spend the night.
Day 07: Aguas Calientes – Machu Picchu – Cusco
Today is the most important day of our trip, we will wake up around 04:30 in the morning where we will start our trek to the lost citadel of the Incas “Machu Picchu”. We will arrive at the Machu Picchu sanctuary at 06:00 am to begin our guided tour for approximately 2 hours through the most important places of this archaeological center, after our guided we will have free time to visit the places of greatest interest and at the same time to visit the mountain of Wayna Picchu or the Monata Machu Picchu (Optional and not included). In the afternoon we will return to the town of Aguas Calientes where we will board the return train until arriving at the town of Ollantaytambo. This is where our mobility will be waiting for you to return to the city of Cusco, so we will finish our hike from Salkantay trek to Machu Picchu.
Day 08: Cusco
Today is a relaxing day so you can explore the fascinating capital of the Incas, visit its markets, buy some souvenirs, do some optional activities as well as get ready for the last night in the city!
You can explore some of many very good museums such as the Inca Museum, the Qoricancha Museum, the Archaeological Museum (which also houses a small art exhibition), the Regional Historic Museum and the Religious Art Museum.
Cusco has got numerous colonial churches too. The most important of them is the Cathedral on the main square. Its construction started in 1559 and it took 100 years to finish!! The Cathedral can pride on the biggest depository of Colonial art of the city! A vault containing remains of the famous Incan historian – Garcilaso de la Vega is just past the entrance. Other churches that are worth seeing are La Compañía, La Merced and San Francisco.
The city is also a perfect base for those more adventurous as it offers a range of optional outdoor activities such as white river rafting on Urubamba River, horseback riding around nearby archaeological sites (Sacsayhuaman, Qenqo, Tambo Machay and Puca Pucara) or mountain biking down to Maras, Moray and Salineras and perhaps visiting some Incan sites on the way.
Day 09: Sightseeing bus to Puno
Today, we take a tourist bus that takes us to each important site of the Cusco – Puno route.
First, we need to pass through Southern Valley (also called the Sun Route), where we stop in the village of Andahuaylillas to visit the famous San Pedro Church, which is called the “Sixtine Chapel of Americas” to observe the quality of its works of art! The church was constructed by Jesuits in the edge of the 16th and the 17th centuries. Its architectural structure is typical for small town´s churches while its wide walls are characteristic of colonial buildings. It is made of adobe and its facade is decorated with white painting. Two stoned columns are projected towards its main entrance. Although its architecture is relatively modest, its interior is richly decorated with amazing wall paintings!
After seeing the church, we continue towards the pre-Incan city of Pikillaqta beeing once one of the most impressive regional centers of the culture Wari!! The culture was seated in Ayacucho and its centres were occupied by Incas for many years. Today, Pikillaqta is a national archaeological park of great importance!! The word Pikillaqta is made up of Quechuan words “piki” = flea and “llaqta” = town, so that the meaning of the city´s name was the “City of the Fleas”. It does not want to say that fleas lived in the city nor that its inhabitants were lousy. The name was derived from the fact that each inhabitant lived in cramped conditions, in a very small room. Constructions of Pikillaqta consists of over 200 kanchas (apartments), 504 golgas (storages) and other constructions. The city accommodated a population of approximately 10 thousands of inhabitants!! Some investigators supposed that Pikillacta turned into a city of “mitimaes” during Incan times (“Mitimae” comes from the Quechuan word “mitma” meaning “resettlement”. So mitimaes were originally groups of families taken by Incas from their native place to loyal or conquered towns to perform political, cultural, social, and economic functions).
After this guided tour, we continue to Raqchi where we observe the Temple of Wiracocha (Incan god – creator).
Then, we go to La Raya representing the border between Cusco´s region and Puno´s region. This place is well-known for its viewpoint offering splendid views of the surrounding Andes.
Our last stop is in the village of Pucara where we visit the Lithic Museum exhibiting artefacts of an pre-Incan culture.
Finally, we reach the city of Puno, where we accommodate ourselves in a hotel.
Day 10-11: Titicaca Lake Tour
In the morning, we board our comfortable motorboat to explore Uros Floating Islands as well as Amantani and Taquile Islands laying on Titicaca Lake. We stop at the islands to view the magic of the lake’s scenery and to meet friendly people of its communities.
The lake is located at 3,830 metres above sea level resulting in extreme wheather conditions with very cold nights and strong sunshine during days. The city of Puno situated on its shores is well-known for wealth of its traditional dances, there are up to 100 different varieties, usually performed in street processions celebrating of Catholic feast´s days. Another highlight and a popular optional activity of Puno is a visit of its nearby spectacular Chullpas of Sillustani, tower-like tombs of pre-Incan culture Colla.
Titicaca Lake is the largest lake in the world above 2,000 metres and the highest placed navigable lake in the world! Our first stop on the lake are the floating islands of the Uros people. The Uros began their unusual floating existence centuries ago in an effort to isolate themselves from militant Colla´s and Incan tribes. Unfortunately, Uros´ language got extincted, so nowadays´ Uros people speak Aymara due to intermarriages with Aymara´s speakers. There are about 300 families living on the islands, however, their number has been slowly declining.
The islands are made of layers upon layers of totora reeds that grew in the shallow of the lake. When layers, which are the nearest to water, start to rot, they are replaced with fresh totora layers on the top. Totora is basically used to make everything on the islands, including real houses, boats and small model boats serving as souvenirs. A construction of a real totora boat takes up to 6 months!
After visiting the Uros Floating Islands, we continue towards Amantani Island. There, we land and our Tour Guide shows us around the island with its stunning Titicaca Lake views and friendly inhabitants with their particular folklore. We overnight in familial houses on the island to experience a bit more of the local culture.
The following day, we continue our motorboat ride after breakfast in the familial houses. Our next destination is Taquile Island, famous for its fine handwoven textile and clothing considered as the highest-quality handicraft of Peru. Taquile and its textile art was even recognized by UNESCO in 2005.
After a visit of this spectacular island and enjoying its amazing Titicaca Lake views, we return to Puno at afternoon hours. There, we transfer you from the Puno´s port to your hotel.
Day 12: Puno
Today is a relaxing day, free time to explore around Puno, visit its markets, buy some souvenirs, take some optional activities (for example, a visit of the Chullpas de Sillustani) and enjoy the last night in the city.
Day 13: Bus to Arequipa
Today, we take a tourist bus to get to the so called “White City” – Arequipa, which is the second most important and biggest city of Peru! The city is placed at 2,325 m (7,626 ft.) above sea level and is surrounded by Andean mountain range. This magnificet colonial city is absolutely worth of a visit! Arequipa´s city centre is built from a white volcanic stone called sillar. For this reason, buildings in its centre dazzle on the Sun that result in the nickname – “White City”. The highlight of the city is its Cathedral with its main square that can be viewed from one of many surrounding coffee shops. Those, who are interested in history and architecture, may take an optional visit to the Santa Catalina Convent offering a brief respite from the outside world and a unique view into bygone times and a way of life. We can also view the Misti Volcano (5,822 m/19,096 ft.) from the city with its beautiful snowcapped peak. The historic Arequipa´s centre was declared by UNESCO as a “World Cultural Heritage”!!
Day 14-15: Colca Canyon Tour
Colca Canyon is one of the world’s deepest canyons!! It is a canyon of Colca River located in southern Peru. It covers an area of about 100 miles (160 kilometers) northwest of Arequipa. Colca Valley is a colourful Andean valley with pre-Incan roots and towns founded in Spanish colonial times. These towns are still inhabited by people of Collagua´s and Cabana´s cultures! Local people keep traditions of their ancestors as well as keep cultivating pre-Incan stepped terraces for agricultural purposes.
The canyon is home to an Andean condor (Vultur gryphus), a specie that has been in focus of worldwide conservation efforts. Condors can be seen in range as they fly along the canyon´s walls. A popular tourist stop is a viewpoint named “Cruz del Condor” (Condor´s Cross) where people watch condors soaring on warm air waves. This point is situated at 1,200 metres (3,960 ft) below the rims of the canyon.
On the way, you can aprecciate the incredible landscape of Altiplano reaching up to 4,900 metres above sea level. We stop on the way in the Aguada Blanca National Reserve where we observe beautiful South American cameloids such as alpacas, llamas, vicuñas, guanacos and some birds and viscachas as well. Later on, we get to the town of Chivay, where we accommodate ourselves in a hotel. After that, you can visit the local thermal baths called La Calera which temperature reaches 38°C!! In the evening, we have dinner at a local restaurant and then we overnight in our hotel.
The second day, we visit the Cruz del Condor to observe condors flying above the canyon. Before we get there, we make some stops along the way to view the local villages of Cabanaconde and Yanque with their colonial churches and typical clothing as well as nearby pre-Incan tombs placed in mountain walls.
Upon our visit of the Cruz del Condor, we start our return way to Arequipa, where we get in the late afternoon.
Day 16: Arequipa
Today is a relaxing day, free time to explore Arequipa, visit its markets and/or buy some souvenirs. You may visit the peaceful Santa Catalina Convent or just wander about the city centre. You also are given the last opportunity to discover Arequipa´s night life!
Day 17: Flight to Lima
Today, we take a flight back to Lima. We transfer you from the Lima´s airport to your hotel. Then you are given time off to explore the city on your own and buy some souvenirs. You can also do some optional activities. Overnight in your hotel.
The capital of Lima is also known as the “City of the Kings” as it was founded by Francisco Pizarro on the Day of the Three Kings (Epiphany) in 1535! The Plaza de Armas (main square) is a heart of old Lima. There can be found the Cathedral, Governmental Palace and Archbishop´s Palace.
Day 18: Departure
Transfer to the Lima´s airport for your international flight.
End of service.
- Welcome by our Representative at arrival.
- All transfers from/to all airports.
- Accommodation: 3* hotels (13 nights), campsites (3 nights), a local homestay on Amantani Island (1 night).
- All entrance fees according to the itinerary.
- Professional bilingual Tour Guides as per itinerary.
- Meals: 16x breakfast, 7x lunch, 4x dinner and 3x afternoon’s hot beverages during the Inca Trail.
- Porters to carry food, camping and cooking equipment and 7 kg of each passenger’s stuff during the Salkantay Trek.
- A Cook for the Salkantay Trek.
- Camping equipment of the Salkantay Trek: personal double tents, Inflatable mattress (Term-a-Rest Mattress);
- A blanket and a pillow
- A sleeping bag (for up to -5°C) for the Salkantay Trek;
- Duffel bag (for your personal belongings for the Salkantay Trek);
- Day Pack Rain Covers for the Salkantay Trek;
- Rain ponchos;
- Tables and chairs, a dining tent and a toilet tent.
- Cooking tent with cooking equipment for the Salkantay Trek.
- Domestic flights: Lima – Cusco and Arequipa – Lima.
- 1x sightseeing tourist bus: Cusco – Puno.
- Transport by a private van during the tours and local transfers.
- A shuttle bus down from Machu Picchu to Aguas Calientes Town.
- Tourist train (Expedition Service) from Machu Picchu to Ollantaytambo.
- Motorboat transportation during the tours of Titicaca Lake.
- Pre & post tour accommodation,
- International flights and airport departure taxes,
- Huayna Picchu Mountain ($80)
- Travel insurance,
- Meals not mentioned,
- Tips and baggage portage to local staff (please note: it is a custom to give tips in Peru, however, it is not obligatory),
- Other extras not specified.
To qualify for children’s discounts, does the age correspond to the time the reservation is made or the
age at the time of the tour?
The discount for minors applies according to their age at the time of the tour. Regardless of that, the travel document must be sent at the time of booking the tour.
What documents do I need to prove that I am a student?
The student discount is valid if, at the time of booking, you send us a copy or photo of your university card. This must have the following information:
- College name.
- Full name of the student.
- Student photography.
- Effective date (validity of one year).
In the same way, this discount is valid as long as you have a maximum of 25 years.
Why are there prices by type of accommodation in Aguas Calientes?
The idea is to offer you an option according to what you want to spend for the tour, even leaving open the possibility that you can choose the accommodation in Aguas Calientes yourself by your own means.
What are the differences between one accommodation and another?
Hostal Mapi: triple or quadruple shared room, with shared bathroom. It includes box lunch as breakfast.
Hostal Presidente or similar: single or double private room, with private bathroom. It includes box lunch as breakfast.
Tierra Viva Hotel (3 stars) or similar: single or double private room, with private bathroom. It includes breakfast.