INCA TRAIL AND PRISTINE AMAZON RAINFOREST

ADVENTURE TOUR OF PERU

Join us for an amazing adventure tour of Peru designed with the adventurous soul in mind. Hike trails and explore the pristine Amazon Rainforest, for four days surrender to the mountains during the Inca trail trek to Machu Picchu. Enjoy the many flavours of the world-famous Peruvian cuisine.
1/8

5000 USD per person

based on double occupancy

15
days
TOUR HIGHLIGHTS:
  • The four day Inca trail trek in the Andes to Machu Picchu 

  • Experience the pristine heart of the Amazon Rainforest in the Tambopata national reserve

  • Learn a lot about the complex life in the Rainforest and with some luck we might spot a wide range of wildlife

  • Induldge yourself in the delicious Peruvian cuisine and try a large variery of local dishes including the famous ceviche

 

 
PRICE INCLUDES:
  • Domestic transportation (flights, airport transfers, busses and trains)

  • Accomodation in three star hotels

  • Professional and passionate tour guide

  • Specialised local guides

  • Entrace fees

  • Food is included where specified in the itinerary

 

NOT INCLUDED:
  • International flights

  • Tips for service

 
 
 
ITINERARY
(Meals included within brackets)

Day 1: Arrival in Lima

Airport pick-up and overnight in the neighbourhood of Miraflores in the central part of the city. Overnight in Lima

 

Day 2:  The Sacred Valley of the Incas

Flight Lima to Cusco in the morning. Pick-up at the airport and private transfer to the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Lunch in the small town Pisaq and visit the beautiful Incan site of above the town. Our local and very knowledgeable guide gives vivid explanations of the historical places. We continue our way to our favorite spot, Ollantaytambo. Overnight at a charming hotel in peaceful surroundings. The reason why we choose to stay the first nights in Ollantaytambo is because it's easier to acclimatize to the altitude. Cusco is at 3400 meters and Ollantaytambo is at 2800 meters.

 

Day 3: Visit a nearby town and a local family

This day is a special treat that is a part of our work in sustainability and ecotourism. Visit a nearby town and a local family that welcome you into their home. The town does not receive any tourist and with your visit you contribute to the local people. The family shares with you their traditional handicraft, maybe you'd like to try it out yourself! Lunch in the town and back at the hotel in the afternoon. The guides will give you a briefing preparing you for the trek. Bring only what you need for the days on the trail. The rest of the luggage you can leave at the hotel.

 

Day 4: Inca Trail day 1

(12km): Hikers cross the Vilcanota River and follow the trail to the right as it climbs steeply up from the river. After passing through a small village, the ruins of the Inca hillfort of Huillca Raccay come into view high above the mouth of the river Cusichaca ('happy bridge'). It is a simple descent down to the Cusichaca river.

 

Day 5. Inca Trail day 2

(11km): Climbing up from Wayllabamba for about 3 hours through steepening woods and increasingly spectacular terrain brings you to the tree line and a meadow known as Llulluchapampa (3,680m). It is another 1 hours climb to the first and highest pass of the trail (Abra de Huarmihuañusca or 'Dead Woman's Pass) at 4,200m. During this part of the trail hikers are exposed to the Andean elements: first scorching sun and then, closer to the pass, freezing winds. Once at the top hikers can celebrate having completed the most difficult section of the trail. The decent from the pass is steep although not difficult, following the trail on the left side of the valley to the valley floor and to the 2nd night's campsite at Pacamayo (3,600m). There are toilet facilities here.

 

Day 6: Inca Trail day 3

Day 3 (16km): From Pacamayo it takes about an hour to  climb up to the ruins of Runkuracay. These small circular ruins occupy a commanding position overlooking the Pacamayo valley below. Another 45 minute hike will bring you to the top of the second pass: Abra de Runkuracay (4,000m). At last you'll feel that you are walking along the trail of the Incas with paving, for the most part, being original. The descent down the steps from the pass is steep so take care. This section of the trail, up till the 3rd pass, is particularly beautiful as the path crosses high stone embankments and skirts deep precipices. After about 1 hour from the 2nd pass you'll arrive at Sayacmarca by way of a superbly designed stone staircase. The name Sayacmarca means 'Inaccessible Town' and describes the position of the ruins perfectly, protected on three sides by sheer cliffs. No one knows the exact purpose of these ruins.

 

You have to backtrack a little to rejoin the trail as it passes Conchamarca, a small Inca dwelling situated in the shadows of Sayacmarca, which was probably a tambo for weary travelers on their way to Machu Picchu. From then on the path descends into magnificent cloudforest full of orchids, hanging mosses, tree ferns and flowers, passing through an impressive Inca tunnel, carved into the rock, on the way.

 

The trail then climbs up to the 3rd pass (3,700m). The view from the pass offers excellent views of several snow-capped peaks including Salkantay (6,271m) and Veronica (5,750m). A few minutes after the pass is Phuyupatamarca, the most impressive Inca ruin so far. The name means 'Town in the Clouds'. Access to the ruins is down a steep flight of stairs passing six 'Inca Baths' probably used for the ritual worship of water.

 

Leaving the site via an impressive Inca staircase leading from the west side of the ruins (the far end from the baths) you descend a thousand or so steps. Be careful with your knees which will feel the strain by the end of the day. 

After about an hour of walking through cloudforest you may just be able to see the tin roof of the Trekkers Hostal at Wiñay Wayna, although it probably won't be for another 2 hours until you arrive.

 

The Trekkers Hostal certainly isn't considered one of Peru's best-looking hotels. It is also usually crowded and cramped, but it is the last official campsite before Machu Picchu, hence it's always full. There is, however, a restaurant where you can purchase food, drinks and even a well deserved beer, as well as hot showers ($1.5) and toilets. Most people camp here but there are dormitory beds available in the hostal (book in advance) or you can sleep of the floor for a dollar.

 

A short trail leaves from the southern end of the hostal to the ruins of Wiñay Wayna. The name in Quechua means 'forever young' and is named after a variety of pink orchid which grows here. The ruins comprise magnificent agricultural terraces set in an impressive location. There are also many buildings of good quality stonework and a sequence of 10 baths, suggesting that the site was probably a religious center associated with the worship of water. Ritual cleansing may have taken place here for pilgrims on the final leg of the trail to Machu Picchu.

 

Day 7: Inca Trail day 4

(6km): The trail from the hostal to Machu Picchu is clearly marked and takes about 1,5 hours. Most people attempt to wake up at 4.30am so that they can leave Wiñay Wayna by 5.30am to get to Machu Picchu before sunrise. The sky starts getting light by 6am and the first rays of the sun reach Machu Picchu at about 7am. The trail contours a mountainside and drops into cloudforest before coming to an almost vertical flight of 50 steps leading up to the final pass at Intipunku (Sun Gate). Suddenly the whole of Machu Picchu is spread out before you in all its glory - a fantastic sight for all. In the afternoon catch the train back to Ollantaytambo. 

 

Day 8: Cusco and Sacsayhuaman

In the morning it's time to head back to Cusco. On the way visit the impressive Incan fortress of Sacsayhuaman just outside of Cusco, a local market and the central square. Overnight in Cusco.

 

Day 2: To the Amazon rainforest
Upon arrival from Lima or Cusco, we will welcome you at the airport and drive you ten minutes to our Puerto Maldonado headquarters. While enjoying your first taste of the forest in our gardens we will ask you to pack only the necessary gear for your next few days, and leave the rest at our safe deposit. This helps us keep the boats and cargo light. The two and a half hour boat ride from the Tambopata Port to Refugio Amazonas will take us past the Community of Infierno and the Tambopata National Reserve´s checkpoint and into the buffer zone of this 1.3 million hectare conservation unit.

Orientation

Upon arrival, the lodge manager will welcome you and brief you with important navigation and security tips.

Caiman Search: We will be out at the river’s edge at night, scanning the shores with headlamps and flashlights to catch the red gleams of reflection from caiman eyes.

Overnight at Refugio Amazonas

Day 3: Deeper into the pristine rainforest, Tambopata Research Center
A thirty minute walk from Refugio Amazonas leads to the 25 meter scaffolding canopy tower. A bannistered staircase running through the middle provides safe access to the platforms above. The tower has been built upon high ground, therefore increasing your horizon of the continuous primary forest extending out towards the Tambopata National Reserve. From here views of mixed species canopy flocks as well as toucans, macaws and raptors are likely.

Transfer Boat - Refugio Amazonas to TRC

Four and half hours by boat from Refugio Amazonas, in the pristine heart of the reserve, lies the Tambopata Research Center. One and half hours into our boat journey, as we cross the confluence with the Malinowski River, we will leave the final traces of human habitation behind. Within the 700,000 hectare uninhabited nucleus of the reserve, sightings of capybara, caiman, geese, macaws and other large species will become more frequent.

Chuncho Clay Lick

Three hours from Refugio Amazonas, deep in the Tambopata National Reserve we will stop at the Chuncho claylick. After a brief walk (~5 minutes) we will have the chance to see dozens of large macaws feeding on the special sodium rich clays of the riverbank. The Chuncho claylick probably attracts more large macaws than any other claylick in the world and the sight of dozens of macaws taking flight is truly unforgettable. The details of our stopover will depend on the weather and the amount of macaw activity, as the birds don’t visit the clay lick when it is raining.

Orientation

Upon arrival, the lodge manager will welcome you and brief you with important navigation and security tips.

Overlook Trail

A three to five kilometer hike will lead us to overlooks commanding magnificent views of the Tambopata winding its way into the lowlands. The forest on this trail, regenerating on old bamboo forest, is good for Howler Monkey and Dusky Titi Monkey.

Macaw Project Lectures

After dinner scientists will provide an in depth look at the biology of macaws, their feeding habits, the theories for clay lick use, their breeding and feeding ecology, population fluctuations and the threats to their conservation.

Day 4: Macaw Clay Lick
On most clear mornings of the year dozens of large macaws and hundreds of parrots congregate on this large river bank in a raucous and colorful spectacle which inspired a National Geographic cover story. Discretely located fifty meters from the cliff, we will observe Green-winged, Scarlet and Blue-and-gold Macaws and several species of smaller parrots descend to ingest clay. Outings are at dawn when the lick is most active.

Floodplain Trail

This five kilometer trail covers the prototypical rain forest with immense trees criss-crossed by creeks and ponds. Amongst the figs, ceibas and shihuahuacos we will look for Squirrel, Brown Capuchin, and Spider Monkeys as well as peccaries. TRC is located within this habitat.

Pond Platform

Ten minutes upriver from the lodge is a tiny pond with a platform in the middle. It is a great place to spot waterfowl such as Muscovy duck, sunbittern and hoatzin along with the woodpeckers, oropendolas, flycatchers and parakeets that call this pond their home.

Night walk

You will have the option of hiking out at night, when most of the mammals are active but rarely seen. Much easier to find are frogs with shapes and sounds as bizarre as their natural histories.

Overnight at Tambopata Research Center

Day 5: Rainforest excursions
If you wish to visit the clay lick again, this morning is your chance.


Terra Firme Trail

An entirely different habitat characterized by smaller, thinner trees atop hills and slopes is covered by this five kilometer trail. Saddleback tamarins are frequently found here. As we walk near the limits of the swamp we will also keep our eyes open for rare tapir tracks.

Palm Swamp Trail

Growing on the remains of an oxbow lake and providing both arboreal as well as terrestrial mammals with fruits throughout the year, the aguaje palms are one of the most important food sources in the rainforest. Demand for these fruits and great conditions for planting rice, makes the palm swamp also one of the most threatened habitats.

 

Day 14: Flight to Lima

We retrace our river and road journey back to Puerto Maldonado, our office and the airport. Depending on airline schedules, this may require dawn departures. We'll head back down towards the coast to Lima. Transfer to the hotel in Lima and overnight.

 

Day 15: International departure

ITINERARY IN SHORT:

Day 1: Arrival in Lima

Day 2: The Sacred Valley of the Incas

Day 3: Visit a local village

Day 4 - 7: Inca Trail

Day 8: Back to Cusco, Sacsayhuaman

Day 9: Day off

Day 10 - 14: Amazon rainforest

Day 14: Flight to Lima 

Day 15: International departure