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Altiplano to the Andes with Lares Valley Detailed Tour  Itinerary

Day 1 Lima Arrive in Lima at any time. A representative from Adventures to Peru will greet you at the airport and private transfer to your hotel. There are no planned activities today so check-in and enjoy the city. 
This afternoon you are free to explore colonial and modern Lima, with visits to the Government Palace, cathedral, Plaza de Armas and the Archaeological Museum. Or hang around the bustling commercial districts of and Miraflores and Barranco.

Day 2 Puno / Lake Titicaca (B) A morning flight takes us up to Puno on the shores of spectacular Lake Titicaca. The afternoon is free to explore the plazas, churches and markets of this lakeside town.

Puno, a city of 150,000 inhabitants, is considered by local populations to be a linguistic, cultural and political border. To the south toward Bolivia the Aymara people and language are dominant. To the north, the better-known Quechua is the dominant tongue. Fortunately, you will see both.

Day 3 Amantani Island Lake Titicaca (B,L,D) After breakfast, our local guide will take to the floating reed island’s of the Uros (Aymara roots) and then on to Amantani Island (Qechua roots) by motor boat. The Uros people are a specific cultural group apart from the Incas. They are more sensitive and defensive. We ask that visitors always proceed with respect. Please ask before snapping pictures, as some of the older generations will object

The locals are very friendly and produce souvenirs representing life on the Lake. You can support them by buying a souvenir if you choose.

After the Uros, we will take a step back in time as we arrive to Amantani Island. The island culture offers a glimpse into their ancient traditions and customs, where a rural home stay will open your eyes to the true beauty of this place and the people that have inhabited the lake for thousands of years.

Today’s focus: Andean views of life, death and marriage; Origins of The Sacred Lake

Day 4 Puno (B) We’ll start with an early wake up call to enjoy a spectacular sunrise over Lake Titicaca before visiting the neighboring island of Taquile. Famous for textiles and weavings, Taquile is a cultural treasure chest. We’ll spend an hour hiking to the summit of Taquile Island before enjoying lunch overlooking the Lake Titicaca. Our lunch will include local favorites, trout or kingfish, before heading back to Puno.

Day 5 Cusco (B) After breakfast our overland journey continues through the high plateau. Our full day overland journey through the majestic Andes will astound you. We’ll cover 400km, go over mountain passes at 4,334m (14,222ft) above sea level, visit some of our favorite local indigenous villages and sample some of the best local roast lamb available. Approximate arrival in Cusco is 3:00pm.

Day 6 Ollantaytambo (B) One of the most spectacular days of the tour takes us through the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Once an important source of food for the Inca, the Sacred Valley is a lush agricultural region that continues to supply the city of Cusco with much of its produce. As it is 600m lower than Cusco, temperatures are on average 5 degrees Cº higher in the Sacred Valley.

Our travels will bring us through the major archaeological sites of Pisac and Ollantaytambo. At Pisac, an optional two hour or 5km hike will allow us to fully appreciate the Incan city nestled high in the Andean range. Later, the colorful artesian market at Pisac will no doubt be a highlight for those in search of unique souvenirs.

The day trip finishes in the picturesque village of Ollantaytambo, location of another large Inca site. This major ruin is known as the best surviving example of Inca urban planning and engineering. But more than that, Ollantaytambo is a living breathing Inca City. Here we catch our breath and prepare for the hike ahead.

Focus today: Inca stone working techniques, 3 Peruvian blessings: Coca leaf, Andean Maca, Potato

Day 7 Lares Valley Trek to Machu PIcchu – Calca / Totora Canyon / Lares hot springs / Huacahuasi (B,L,D) Departure from Ollantaytambo at 07:00 am. We journey through the Sacred Valley of the Incas to Calca, then head north toward The Lares Valley. From here you’ll be treated to beautiful views of the famous Sacred Valley of the Incas and the ornamental terraces of Pisac. After passing Machacancha hot springs we will start an easy hike for 2-3 hours through an old Inca road of Totora Canyon, which is ideal for acclimatization to the altitude. Stunning views of the snow capped Vilcanota mountain range. Your guide points out an abundance of local flora and Andean medicinal plants along the trail such as Molle, Retama, Muña, Marku, Kuñuco etc. Then our private transport will take you to Lares Hot Springs to relax and enjoy lunch. After lunch we will walk for 3 more hours to Huacahuasi (3,700m), where we will make our first camp. Warm clothes are a must, as below zero temperatures are not uncommon.

*Included: Lunch, Dinner + Camping facilities.

*Today’s walking distance approximately 8 km

Day 8 Huacahuasi / Ipsaychocha Pass 4,400m / Ipsaycocha Lake (B,L,D) mBreakfast around 6:00am as we start walking around 7:00am. We will stop for a short visit of Huacahuasi community, where your local guide will give you some insight into local Andean background. Learn about ancient customs and traditions, ancestral farming secrets, food preservation and most of all local weaving techniques. If you’ve carried gifts or school supplies for the children now is the time.

We continue will climbing around Sondor Mountain and over the first pass (4440mtrs) and after a short decent we have lunch.

We resume our hike upstream 3-4 hours until we make Ibsaycocha pass the second pass of the trip at 4300m. From here the views are again fabulous and for the first time we have a clear view of mount Veronica standing at 5682m. We then begin the descent to Ipsaycocha Lake to make camp.

*Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner + Camping facilities.

*Today’s walking distance approximately 11 km

Day 9 Patacancha / Willoq / Ollantaytambo / Aguas Calientes (B,L,D) Today you’ll have ample opportunities for some spectacular photos. The gentle downhill path is covered in Andean flora, and animals such as llamas and alpacas are fairly commonplace. If we’re lucky, we might even catch a glimpse of Andean geese, Andean cara caras (Andean Raptor) or the famous Andean Condor. We will feel welcomed by the warm Quechua people, whose homeland we have the rare opportunity to see firsthand.

After approximately 4 hours hiking we’ll arrive to the village of Willoq where lunch will be waiting. After lunch, our private van will take us to Ollantaytambo to board the local tourist train for a picturesque journey to Aguas Calientes (2 hours). We check into our hostel for the night, get a hot shower and a real bed! The willing can enjoy the local hot springs and shopping before dinner.

* Included: Breakfast, Lunch, 1 night hotel accommodation

*Today’s walking distance approximately 8 km

Day 10 Aguas Calientes / Machupicchu / Cusco (B) Up before dawn for breakfast, then complete your journey on a 1-hour walk, or catch the bus 25 minutes up to the Citadel of Machu Picchu. Join our local guide for a detailed interpretation of the site without the pressure of day-trippers that arrive at midday. Then take advantage, as you’ll have plenty of free time for exploring further. Optionally, climb Wayna Picchu peak, providing the chance to see Machu Picchu and its surroundings from a more exclusive angle. Or hike to the Temple of the Moon, Inca Bridge or the Sun Gate. Others may choose to meditate, write in their journal or simply take it all in. Return to Aguas Calientes generally around 1:00pm for lunch and at 4:00pm we catch our return train to Cusco arriving approximately 9:00pm

*Train departure times quoted here are not guaranteed and may vary according to season and availability.

*Included: Breakfast, Entrances, guided tour & round trip bus to Machu Picchu,

*Today’s walking distance approximately 5 km

Focus: Machu Picchu practical explanations and theories

Day 11 Cusco (B) Today is a free day in the Incan Imperial Capital. We recommend a stop by the Incan Archaeological Museum located just around the corner from the Plaza de Armas. Then, time permitting, visit the recently opened ‘Casa Concha’, which houses hundreds of pieces removed from Machu Picchu by Hiram Bingham in 1912 and recently returned in 2011 (Centennial Anniversary of Machu Picchu’s scientific discovery) to Peru by Yale University in the United States.

Also worth a visit is the colorful local market at San Pedro and the bohemian neighborhood of San Blas, full of artists, craftsmen and street vendors, both only minutes from the hotel.

Or, visit nearby ruins of Sacsayhuaman and Tambomachay on horseback. More active options include river rafting, motorcycle tours and mountain biking.

Day 12 Lima (B) Fly to Lima for the final stop on our journey. Finish up last minute shopping at the Indian market and enjoy one last evening in the capital city.

Day 13 Depart Day Lima (B) Adios amigos! Adventures to Peru services end today. Adventures to Peru will reconfirm your outgoing flight. Transfer to the airport for ongoing flight home.

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