Peru: Cusco & Machu Picchu

Select Experience Tour, Peru: Cusco & Machu PicchuSelect Experience Tour, Peru: Cusco & Machu Picchu

Peru

Cusco & Machu Picchu

overview

Historic and dramatic, Cusco impresses not only by its elevated location at over 11,000 feet, but also for its wealth of Incan sites and colonial architecture—guided walks explore this Andean treasure. Then, travel by scenic train to astounding Machu Picchu, where a full-day private guided tour introduces you to its mysteries, and where you may choose to return again at sunrise. An authentic Peruvian welcome is assured in a historic property in the center of Cusco and a deluxe resort and spa at the base of Machu Picchu—also where you join a world class chef in a hands-on cooking class to round out your Peruvian adventure.

 

Activity Level
Activities vary and
are accessible to
most fitness levels;
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Meet
Cusco, Peru
Depart
Cusco, Peru
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5 days, 4 nights Trip Includes 

Trip Includes

  • Accommodations for 2 nights in boutique hotel and 2 nights in five-star hotel (private bath)
  • Meals: 4 breakfasts, 2 lunches (days 2 and 3), and 1 dinner
  • Private guided walking tour of Cusco
  • Cooking lesson with professional chef
  • Private guided Machu Picchu exploration
  • Transportation from the meeting point to the departure point (including airport transfers;
    Vistadome train service from Ollantaytambo to Aguas Calientes and return; private ground transportation from Cusco hotel to
    Ollantaytambo and return; two round trip bus tickets from Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu site)
  • Monument entrances and two park entry tickets and fees
  • Basic travel insurance coverage
  • The unbeatable and cumulative experience of the CW staff
Number of Travelers
Total in your party
Price From
per person double occupancy
Single supplement + $0 

*Surcharges may apply for New Year’s, Christmas, or other national holidays

Call 800.234.6900 to book this trip.

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Itinerary and Accommodations

Days
Destination
1
Cusco & Machu Picchu
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2
Cusco & Machu Picchu
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3
Cusco & Machu Picchu
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4
Cusco & Machu Picchu
View on map
5
Cusco & Machu Picchu
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Day 1

Cusco & Machu Picchu

Arrival to Cusco; Cusco guided walking tour; 1-2 hours, easy

Upon arrival in Cusco, one of the highest cities in the world at 11,400 feet, a guided walking tour takes you to the main sites of this multi-layered city. Incan in origin, and, then built over by the Spanish after their conquest and colonization, the historic center is a wealth of centuries-deep architectural marvels and vibrant markets reflecting the diversity of Andean life in its people, crafts, foods, produce, and animals! You start at the city’s main square—the Plaza de Armas—and continue to Cusco’s cathedral, which houses more than 400 Cusqueña School paintings, and on to the Inca walls with the 12-angled stone, and the Incan Sun Temple of Koricancha inside the Santo Domingo Temple. Concluding the walk through cobbled streets, you wind your way back to your boutique hotel in a historic neighborhood. You may choose to adjust to the altitude by unwinding in your hotel’s spa, which offers many treatment options.

Casa Cartagena

Cusco, Peru

A fully renovated historic property in the heart of historic Cusco, this intimate boutique hotel offers spacious suites around a tranquil Spanish-style interior courtyard with lovely gardens and terraces. A full spa with multiple treatment rooms and options is on site, as well as a fine-dining restaurant and lobby and terrace bars. All suites are equipped with an oxygen-enrichment system to facilitate adjustment to Cusco’s altitude.

Day 2

Cusco & Machu Picchu

Train travel from Cusco to Aguas Calientes; hands-on cooking class; optional bird watching walk; 1 hour, easy

This morning, a 2- hour transfer takes you from your hotel to the Ollantaytambo train station where you catch the train (Vistadome class) to Aguas Calientes, the riverside town at the base of the mountains surrounding Machu Picchu. You enjoy lunch upon arrival at your luxurious hotel and spa. This afternoon, you join your hotel’s excellent resident chef for a hand’s-on cooking class, an opportunity to learn about the cuisine of Peru—one of the world’s most delicious and fascinating gastronomic traditions, with of course, a tasting of the final product. Later, in the early evening, there is time to explore the charming spa town of Aguas Calientes, known, as its name implies for its hot springs, perhaps dining in one of its many restaurants, or you may choose to indulge in a massage or treatment in your hotel’s luxury spa.

Alternatively, you may choose to explore the cloud forest ecosystem of Aguas Calientes with a 1-hour bird-watching walk (a supplemental cost applies). Not far from the hotel, on the road to Puente Ruinas, some of the exotic bird species frequently sighted along the Vilcanota River in lush cloudforest vegetation are the Inca wren, lyre-tailed nightjar, crested quetzal, masked trogon, emerald toucan, oscillated piculet and the golden-olive-woodpecker.

Sumaq Machu Picchu Hotel

Aguas Calientes, Peru

Inspired by local architecture and art, the town of Aguas Calientes’ only five-star hotel offers spacious plush rooms in a riverside location at the base of Machu Picchu’s high mountains and national park cloud forest. In addition to a full-service spa, the hotel’s restaurant offers exceptional cuisine and a panoramic bar.

Day 3

Cusco & Machu Picchu

Guided tour of Machu Picchu; optional walks to Sun Gate or Urubamba River, easy to moderate

Early this morning, you start your guided journey to the mountaintop site of Machu Picchu, beginning by travelling by bus up a series of breathtaking switchbacks. Still an enigma to archaeologists, it is thought that Machu Picchu was built around 1440 as a country retreat for Incan nobility, although there is evidence it had been a sacred Incan site for much longer; and yet another school of thought claims the site was an astronomical observatory. There is ample time for you to develop your own theories as you wander through the gates and around the many temples, palaces, and living quarters. Its remote location kept it hidden from the Spanish Conquistadors and it was not re-exposed to the world until 1911 by American academic Hiram Bingham. Your tour of the site includes exploration of the Temple of the Sun, Temple of the Condor, and the astronomical observatory. Breaking for lunch at a hotel not far from the grounds, after, with your guide’s help, you can decide whether you want to walk up to Inti Punku, the Sun Gate, or spend more time exploring the incredible site of Machu Picchu, strolling its mystical altars, terraces, and chambers in solitude, or take one of the short walks leading from the site. An alternative walk is back in the valley, along the Urubamba River, to a tranquil waterfall with abundant cloud forest biodiversity. Returning to your hotel by early evening, you may again choose to enjoy a spa treatment followed by dinner in the hotel’s restaurant.

Sumaq Machu Picchu Hotel

Aguas Calientes, Peru

Inspired by local architecture and art, the town of Aguas Calientes’ only five-star hotel offers spacious plush rooms in a riverside location at the base of Machu Picchu’s high mountains and national park cloud forest. In addition to a full-service spa, the hotel’s restaurant offers exceptional cuisine and a panoramic bar.

Day 4

Cusco & Machu Picchu

Optional Machu Picchu sunrise visit (on your own); travel from Aguas Calientes to Cusco

This morning you have the option for an independent early visit to Mach Picchu (entry to the site and roundtrip bus tickets included), to experience the magic of sunrise just as the gates open. Or, you may choose to stay at your hotel, enjoying its amenities or a final visit of the town of Aguas Calientes before catching the early afternoon train to Ollantaytambo station, and from there, private transportation to your hotel in Cusco, arriving in Cusco in the early evening (~5:00 to 6:00 pm).

Casa Cartagena

Cusco, Peru

A fully renovated historic property in the heart of historic Cusco, this intimate boutique hotel offers spacious suites around a tranquil Spanish-style interior courtyard with lovely gardens and terraces. A full spa with multiple treatment rooms and options is on site, as well as a fine-dining restaurant and lobby and terrace bars. All suites are equipped with an oxygen-enrichment system to facilitate adjustment to Cusco’s altitude.

Day 5

Cusco & Machu Picchu

Departure from Cusco

A transfer from your hotel in Cusco to the Cusco airport is provided based on your flight departure time.

Itinerary Disclaimer

Bear in mind that this is a typical itinerary, and the actual activities, sites, and accommodations may vary due to season, special events, weather, or transportation schedules. We reserve the right to alter the itinerary since tour arrangements are made up to a year in advance, and unforeseen circumstances that mandate change may arise. Itinerary changes are made to improve the tour and your experience. If you are currently booked on a CW adventure, an itinerary has been sent to you for your exact departure date. Please call CW at 800.464.9255 if you have any questions about the exact itinerary or hotels selected for any of our tours.

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