DAY 01: Arrival in Cusco
We welcome you at the airport and transfer you to your hotel. In the afternoon we take you on a city tour of Cusco.
At 02:00pm in the afternoon we pick up you up from your hotel and go by bus to visit 6 archaeological sites in and around Cusco. The tour ends in the Plaza da Armas around 06:30pm.
Group Tour of Cusco, where you visit the most important sites of the city. Cusco was the Inca Capital, however when the conquerors arrived they changed the culture, traditions and architecture in the area. During the Cusco City Tour you can see these changes, while visiting archaeological sites such as: Koricancha (Temple of the Sun), the Cathedral, Sacsayhuaman, Q’enqo, Pucapucara and Tambomachay. You will explore the mixture of Inca and colonial architecture which is found in many places here in Cusco. We will ensure you get a taste of the former Inca capital during your strolls in Cusco City. (for more information please see Cusco City Tour)
- Pick up from airport and transfer to your hotel
- Pick up from your hotel for the City Tour
- Professional Bilingual Guide
- Tourist Bus
- Entrance Koricancha (per person S/. 10 Soles)
- Tourist Ticket (S/. 130 Soles Adult Foreigners, The Boleto Touristico is valid for 10 days and enables you to visit many different sites such as museums in Cusco and archeological sites in the Sacred Valley)
DAY 02: Sacred Valley and overnight in Aguas Calientes
(Lookout Taray, Pisac Market, Pisac and Ollantaytambo Ruins)
Early in the morning about 09:00am we go by bus into the Sacred Valley. The first point to visit is Pisac and after exploring the ruins and the market we will go to Urubamba where we have lunch in a touristic restaurant. After lunch we go further down the Sacred Valley to Ollantaytambo. Here we explore the amazing ruins of the former fortress. Before boarding the train, make sure to visit the nearby market where you can by beautiful handicrafts and woven fabrics. During the 1.5 hour train ride that will take you to Aguas Calientes you can enjoy beautiful views of the sourrounding nature. On arrival you will be met by a pepresentative (holding a sign board with your name) and taken to your hotel. Overnight.
- Pick up from your hotel
- Professional bilingual guide
- Tourist Transport
- Train ticket from Ollantaytambo to Aguas Calientes
- 1 overnight stay in a basic hotel in Aguas Calientes
- Meals in the Sacred Valley
- Tourist Ticket (S/. 130 Soles The Boleto Touristico is valid for 10 days and enables you to visit many different sites such as museums in Cusco and archeological sites in the Sacred Valley)
DAY 03: Visit of Machu Picchu and return to Cusco
Early morning we take the first bus at 05:30am to be in Machu Picchu as soon as the sun comes up. During a tour of the ruins of Machu Picchu, our experienced bilingual guide will explain all about the history and explain the most important sites of this amazing place. The guided tour will last approx. 2 hours and afterwards you will have enough time to explore the site on your own and if you like you have time to climb Huayna Picchu (the mountain within the site of Machu Picchu, from where you have an amazing view over the site) and can make pictures from the whole Sanctuary.
Please let us know at the time of your booking if you are interested in the climb as we need to obtain a permit for you. The climb will take about 50 min one way. After you explored Machu Picchu you take the bus down to Aguas Calientes. Please ensure you are at least 20 minutes before departure time at the train station, in order to board your train back to Ollantaytambo. Here you board the bus back to Cusco.
- Bus ticket (return) Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu
- Entrance ticket to Machu Picchu
- Professional bilingual guide in Machu Picchu (2 hours approx)
- Train ticket from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo
- Bus from Ollantaytambo to Cusco
- Entrance ticket for Huayna Picchu (optional)
DAY 04: Leaving Cusco
In the morning we pick you up from your hotel and transfer you to the airport in order to board your flight.
- Pick up from hostel
Transfer to the airport
Ruins in Cusco
Read below for our favorite ruins in the Cusco region and why we believe touring them is one of the most important things to do on your trip to Peru.
Some guidebooks say that if you only visit one site in Cusco city, this should be it. The base of the colonial church and convent Santo Domingo, Qorikancha was at one time the richest temple in all of the Inca Empire. Today the masterful stonework remains, after having withstood looting of the conquistadores and violent earthquakes that leveled everything around it. The stonework you can see today ranks as some of the finest Inca architecture in all of Peru.
Let the mysterious past capture your imagination as you wander through, quickly forgetting that you’re right in the middle of Cusco city.
Not long ago, Machu Picchu was voted one of the New Seven Wonders of the World, a result that will surprise none of the millions of people who’ve visited the spectacular stone citadel in the sky. What most visitors to Peru don’t know, however, is that the country is thick with ancient Inca wonders. Here are ten others worth checking out. Many are within a day’s journey of Cusco and can be combined with a visit to Machu Picchu.
Arguably the greatest Inca ruin outside of Machu Picchu, this gargantuan complex overlooks the city of Cusco. Sacsahuaman is believed to have once been a royal retreat, a fortress, or both. Its zigzag walls are built with some of the largest stones to be found in Inca masonry; some are estimated to weigh as much as 300 tons, yet are fit together as tightly as the pieces of a jigsaw puzzle.
—Mark Adams, author of Turn Right at Machu Picchu
The Inca were brilliant engineers who strove to integrate their architecture with its natural surroundings. Tipon, a 500-acre site built around a spring near Cusco, has been called their masterpiece of water management. Because the waterworks were constructed as part of a country estate for Inca nobility, Tipon has beautiful stone structures akin to those at Machu Picchu, built in the imperial Inca style, with trapezoidal doors, and serviced by finely cut stone fountains. The intricate baths and irrigation channels still function five centuries after the Spanish conquest, which provides Tipon with an endless, soothing soundtrack of running water.
4. PUKA PUKARA
A small fortress (the name means “red fort”) just off the main Cusco-Pisac road, this might have been some sort of storage facility or lodge, or perhaps a guard post on the road from Cusco to the villages of the Sacred Valley. It is probably the least impressive of the area sites, although it has nice views of the surrounding countryside. From Q’enko, Puca Pucara is a 90-minute to 2-hour walk along the main road; allow a half-hour for your visit.
- is an archaeological site in the Sacred Valley of Perulocated in the Cusco Region, Cusco Province, Cusco District, about 6 km north east of Cusco. The site was declared a Cultural Heritage (Patrimonio Cultural) of the Cusco Region by the National Institute of Culture.It is one of the largest wak’as (holy places) in the Cusco Region. Manywak’as were based on naturally occurring rock formations. It was believed to be a place where sacrifices and mummification took place.
You definitely want a guide for so you don’t miss any of the eerie details or theories.
In 1536, this settlement was the site of the Inca’s greatest military victory over the invading Spaniards. Today, it is one of the only towns in Peru that retains its original Inca walls and street grid, dominated by long, ancient stone walls that once divided groups of homes around communal courtyards. An imposing set of stone terraces (from which the Inca assaulted their Spanish invaders with slingshots and arrows), capped by six enigmatic slabs of pink granite, looms above the town. Most trains to and from Machu Picchu stop at Ollantaytambo, making it an ideal overnight stop.
Ollantaytambo has some of the most extensive areas to explore, and is perfect for visiting on your way to or from Machu Picchu.
MORAY AND MARAS
This unique archaeological site is one of the best examples—along with Machu Picchu—of what might be called extreme Inca landscaping. Three enormous pits, each with beautifully curved sides that staircase down like the interiors of titanic flowerpots, have been carved out of the earth to depths of up to 100 feet and more. Air temperatures between the top and bottom layers can differ by more than 20 degrees, which has led some researchers to theorize that Moray was an Inca agricultural site where experiments on crops were conducted.
Maras is the nearby town where the salt mines dating back to Inca times can be found.
Here you can see locals mining the salt just as the area was originally used for, and even join the process.
Often referred to as Machu Picchu’s sister city because of its striking similarity to the more famous site, Choquequirao may in fact be the larger of the two. (Only 30 percent of the original complex is believed to have been uncovered; in 2005, several sets of ancient agricultural terraces decorated with stone llamas were found.) In addition to its fascinating ruins around a central plaza (as at Machu Picchu), Choquequirao offers the most breathtaking views of any Inca site. The arduous two-day walk to what was probably the estate of an Inca emperor is slowly gaining in popularity as an alternative to the Inca Trail, but to reach the ruins one must walk up and down the steep sides of a valley almost a mile deep.
On the road to Pisac (and a short, signposted walk off the main road), this site is also known as Los Baños del Inca (Inca Baths). Located near a spring just a short walk beyond Puca Pucara, the ruins consist of three tiers of stone platforms. Water still flows across a sophisticated system of aqueducts and canals in the small complex of terraces and a pool, but these were not baths as we know them. Most likely this was instead a place of water ceremonies and worship. The exquisite stonework indicates that the baños were used by high priests and nobility only. Plan on spending an hour here.
These ruins, overlooking the Urubamba River less than an hour northeast of Cusco, are notable for their Inca waterworks and beautiful, curving agricultural terraces, which offer excellent vistas of the Sacred Valley. The religious buildings in particular are as finely made as those at Machu Picchu, and the site features one of Peru’s only remaining intihuatanas, enigmatic carved rocks that were used for astronomical observation. The town of Pisac, located beneath the ruins, also hosts a popular local crafts market.