Explore Machu Picchu - Untours Ventures
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Explore Machu Picchu

All Ventures>>G Adventures>>Explore Machu Picchu
Explore ancient ruins off the beaten path in the Sacred Valley with our expert guide, meet local artisans at a Planeterra-supported Women's Weaving Co-op and local village, take in mountain views on the scenic train to Machu Picchu, enjoy traditional treats and foods,

A wonder of the ancient world, the “lost city of the Incas” is the ideal place to unleash your inner historian. With 2 days to explore the Sacred Valley, once you’ve left the road less travelled, you’ll find majestic ruins, striking views of the Andes and local villages bursting with culture. Add in a local lunch at a Planeterra-supported community restaurant and a traditional pachamanca-style feast and your taste buds will be thanking you. As the premiere operator in the region, be assured we'll leave no stone unturned.


Adventure Details | Itinerary | Excursions | Pre-Post-Trip Options

About This Adventure

National Geographic Journeys
  • Greater exploration, insider access, and the freedom to roam – all without sacrificing comfort
  • Lima, Urubamba, Aguas Calientes, Machu Picchu, Cusco

    Included:

    • Arrival transfer
    • Two-day Sacred Valley tour including Ollantaytambo, Moray, and Pisac ruins and pre-Inca salt pans. Traditional pachamanca-style dinner. Scenic train and guided tour of Machu Picchu. Internal flights. All transport between destinations and to/from included activities.
    • Parwa Community Restaurant the Sacred Valley, Lamay
    • Parque de la Papa (Potato Park), Urubamba
    • Experience a traditional Pachamanca-style dinner
    • Traditional Andean Experience, Urubamba
    • Visit the Cusco Planetarium
    • Interesting articles, helpful tips, and photography advice from National Geographic before you depart
    • All transport between destinations and to/from included activities
    • 7 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 1 dinner. (Allow USD200-300 for meals not included.)
    • Minibus/van, train, plane, walking.
    • Chief Experience Officer (CEO) throughout, local guides.
    • Small group experience; Max 16, Avg 12.
    • Comfort hotels (7 nts).

    Air Options

    While we have no specific air deals on this cruise, please call 1-888-868-6871 if you would like us to assist with your airfare.

    Not included:



    Important Information and Caveats

    Please read this Important Information.

    Itinerary

    Day 1: Lima
    Arrive at any time. Arrival transfer included.

    Get ready for a very busy tour exploring the best of Peru in a week. We recommend booking a pre-night in Lima (in particular if your flight arrives into Lima in the evening) to recover from international flights and rest up before the excitement.

    Please note that if you booked the Peru Culinary Bundle it does not include extra time in Lima and we highly recommend booking pre-trip accommodation. You will be picked up from your hotel at approx 10:00am and taken to a local market and restaurant to prepare and enjoy a traditional Peruvian meal. You will return to your hotel around 13:00.

    Please note that hot water shortages and power outages can be fairly common in Peru (even in upgraded hotels and private homes). We appreciate your patience and understanding that these occurrences are outside of our control.


    Tonight, the adventure begins. Feel free to explore — but make sure you're back in time to meet your group. After introductions, your CEO will review the details of your trip.

    Day 2: Lima/Urubamba(1B, 1D)
    Board an early flight to Cusco then head to the scenic Sacred Valley. Explore the pre-Inca salt pans of Las Salineras and tour the Maras and Moray ruins. Enjoy a traditional pachamanca-style meal of local specialties.

    Moray Ruins Guided Tour
    Explore the ancient site of Moray, which archeologists believe was used to conduct agricultural experiments. Climb down to the bottom of the great circular depressions and notice how the temperature shifts with the depth – sometimes as much as 15°C (27°F)!

    Las Salineras Pre-Incan Salt Pans Guided Tour
    Visit the pre-Incan salt pans of Las Salineras – still in use today. Marvel at the terraced pools set amongst the beauty of the Sacred Valley.

    Day 3: Urubamba(1B, 1L)
    Continue exploring the Sacred Valley with a visit to the “Parque de la Papa” (“Potato Park”). An exclusive experience for Journeys travellers and part of G Adventures for Good, you'll walk through this rural community with a local guide to learn about potato cultivation, weaving, and the importance of both to Andean culture. Also, explore the Ollantaytambo and Pisac ruins and visit the G Adventures-supported Sacred Valley Community Restaurant in Huchuy Qosqo.

    Your Journeys Highlight Moment: Traditional Andean Experience
    In Peru’s Sacred Valley of the Inca, six communities of approximately 6000 indigenous people are working together to preserve over 700 species of potato – a cornerstone of life here. As part of an experience exclusive to National Geographic Journeys travellers – and part of our G Adventures for Good program – visit this area, named “Parque de la Papa” (“Potato Park”), to learn about life in an Andean agricultural community. Walk through the park here with a local guide, dropping by the seed bank (which has direct ties to the Svalbard Global Seed Vault in Norway) and then head out to the fields to watch the planting or harvesting process, depending on the season. After, enjoy some of the delicious varieties of potato and visit the small stone hut where traditional weaving takes place. Learn about the natural dyeing process and witness alpaca wool strands being transformed into beautiful textiles through a centuries-old backstrap weaving style. Your visit to this special community means this local enterprise can continue earning an income that supports their development and conservation goals.

    Your G for Good Moment: Parque de la Papa (Potato Park)
    Parque de la Papa (meaning "Potato Park") serves two important purposes for the community of Pampallacta: the preservation of agricultural biodiversity and economic opportunity. National Geographic Journeys travellers visit the park to learn about life in a rural agricultural Andean community and take a tour of the seed conservation program, which is preserving heritage potato species. They also learn about traditional planting, harvesting and indigenous weaving practices. With G Adventures' support, the community is able to create jobs in the area and invest in local businesses, which helps the community preserve their culture.

    Pisac Ruins Guided Tour
    Tour the fascinating hilltop citadel of Pisac, an Incan ruin with plunging gorges, a ceremonial centre, and winding agriculture terracing that's still in use today. Be captivated by this truly amazing site sitting amid sweeping green valleys and mountain peaks. Explore the back of the site to see a pocketed cliff across Kitamayo Gorge, which once contained hundreds of Inca tombs.

    Your G for Good Moment: Parwa Community Restaurant the Sacred Valley
    Contribute to sustainable tourism in Huchuy Qosqo, a small village of 65 families in the Sacred Valley, by eating at the Parwa Community Restaurant. Learn how the resident-run restaurant was kickstarted by G Adventures and the Multilateral Investment Fund, to become a successful farm-to-table program that boosts the local economy and several spin-off microenterprises.

    Ollantaytambo Ruins Guided Tour
    Tour the town and fortress of Ollantaytambo with a local guide. Take a step back in time at this Inca archaeological site; it still shows signs of its former glory, including agricultural terraces, a Temple Hill, and storehouses. Learn howOllantaytambo Ruins Guided Tour
    Day 4: URUBAMBA/AGUAS CALIENTES(1B)
    Catch an early transfer to Ollantaytambo station and board the scenic train to Aguas Calientes with the option to visit the market. For serious archaeology buffs, there is time for an optional independent visit to Machu Picchu before the guided tour the following morning.

    Day 5: Aguas Calientes/Cusco(1B)
    Enjoy a guided tour of the Machu Picchu ruins. Free time to explore on your own or take an optional visit to the Inca Bridge before returning to Cusco by train.

    Machu Picchu Guided Tour
    Rise and shine – the best time to see the Lost City of the Incas is in the early morning light. Follow the local guide to Machu Picchu to learn about its history at a leisurely pace. Gain local insight into the Inti Mach’ay cave, Inti Watana, the Temple of the Sun, the Temple of the Water, the Temple of the Condor, and the Room of the Three Windows. Take time to sit and feel the energy of this 15th century site, now both a UNESCO World Heritage Site and voted one of the New Seven Wonders of the World (in a worldwide Internet poll).

    Optional Activities

    Inca Bridge Visit, Machu Picchu
    Use any leftover energy from your Machu Picchu hike to visit the Inca Bridge site nearby (thought by some to be a secret back entrance to Machu Picchu). Trek up to the bridge that's cleaving to a 579m (1,900 ft) cliff, and soak in amazing views of cloud forest along the way.

    Day 6: Cusco(1B)
    Explore historic Cusco with options to visit museums or go whitewater rafting, horseback riding or mountain biking. This evening, look to the night sky for a different view at the Cusco Planetarium. Enjoy a presentation on the southern sky, contemporary astronomy, and the ancient Inca relationship with the cosmos. Check out the on-site museum and use the telescopes to admire the stars.

    Please note that if you booked the Peru Culinary Bundle, on day 6 you will be picked up from your hotel at approx 12:30 and taken to a local market and restaurant to prepare and enjoy a traditional Peruvian meal. You will return back to your hotel around 16:00.

    Take in the sights on horseback or rent a motorbike for a more thrilling ride. Looking to learn more about Cusco? Head to one of the many museums in the city.

    Your Journeys Highlight Moment: Cusco Planetarium
    Look to the night sky for a different view of the city. Explore the Cusco Planetarium surrounded by the serene nature of the Llaullipata Ecological Reserve. Enjoy a presentation on the southern sky, contemporary astronomy, and the ancient Incas’ relationship with the cosmos. Check out the on-site museum and use the telescopes to admire the stars (weather-permitting).

    Your Discover Moment
    There's plenty to see and do in Cusco, and we wanted to make sure that you had some time to take it all in. Feel free to relax or try optional activities like visiting Museo Inka, Museo de Historia Regional, and whitewater rafting. Your CEO has more ideas if you need them. Just ask!

    Day 7: Cusco/Lima(1B)
    Fly back to Lima and spend an afternoon in Peru's bustling capital.

    Optional Activities

    Lima City Tour
    Discover Lima’s highlights on this half-day tour. Continue exploring at the archaeological site of Sacsaywaman.

    Day 8: Lima(1B)
    Depart at any time.

    Your CEO can help arrange an optional transfer to the airport.

    Not ready to leave? Your CEO can help with travel arrangements to extend your adventure.

    Optional Activities

    Lima:
    Lima City Tour $39 (Minimum 2): Tour colonial and contemporary Lima. - Approx 3 Hrs

    Pachacamac $50 (minimum 2): Visit the Lost Inca Citadel of Lima. - Approx 3 Hrs

    Larco Museum $51 (Minimum 2): This museum contains the best quality gold and silver collection. - Approx 3 Hrs

    Culinary Tour $72: Visit a local market. Learn how to make Ceviche and Pisco Sours like the experts. - Approx 3 Hrs

    Ballestas Islands with Huacachina From $220 (minimum 2): Enjoy wildlife and history, have lunch in a winery and visit the Huacachina Oasis. - Full day

    Nasca Lines $300: Flight over the mysterious Nasca Lines. Services start and end in Lima. - Full day

    City Contrasts $55 (minimum 2):Visit the other face of Lima, the shanty towns or Pueblos Jovenes. - Approx 3 Hrs

    Lima at Night $70 (minimum 2): Visit the Magic Circuit of Water, walk through the centre of Lima and savour an included dinner. - Approx 3 Hrs

    Palomina Islands $75 (minimum 2): Visit the port area of Lima. Spot wildlife and swim with the sea lions. - Approx 5 Hrs (minimum 2)

    Cusco:
    Horse riding around ruins (with guide) $40
    Horse riding around ruins (without guide) $40
    Whitewater rafting $55
    Mountain biking $55
    Museo Inka $3.5 entrance
    Museo de Historia Regional entrance with Boleto Turistico

    All prices are per person in US dollar amounts (unless stated otherwise), and are subject to change as services are provided by third party operators.

    Add to Your Experience
    Peru Culinary Bundle
    Enjoy two half-day cooking activities in both Cusco and Lima. Visit local markets, pick out ingredients and enjoy learning and eating unique Peruvian dishes influenced by such faraway places as China, Italy, West Africa and Japan.

    1 Day Inca Trail Hike Permit Request

    Want to hike the Inca Trail but for less time than the 4 day hike? This permit is perfect for you as you'll jump off the train early, hike six hours to the Sun Gate and meet up with the rest of the trip.

    Adventure Details | Itinerary | Excursions | Pre-Post-Trip Options
    Not ready to leave? Your CEO can help with travel arrangements to extend your adventure.


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