Join this dream trip to the best of Peru and Ecuador: Watch the sunrise at Maccu Picchu, learn more about the history and culture of the Inca people in the Sacred Valley, experience the unique wildlife of the Galapagos – end the trip with a stop at the foot of the huge Cotopaxi volcanoes. Visit localbusinessexplorer for more information about Peru.
On this trip you will experience several of South America’s greatest highlights: the Inca ruin Machu Picchu, the Sacred Valley, the Cotopaxi volcano, colorful markets and the Galapagos Islands. During the journey, time is set aside to explore the beautiful mountain towns of Cuzco and Quito. In the Galapagos, in addition to your boat trip, you have two nights to go on a voyage of discovery yourself. At the Cotopaxi volcano you stay in a nice lodge and have good opportunities to go hiking or horseback riding in the fantastic nature. During the trip, you will have the opportunity to explore the Indian markets in the Sacred Valley, Latacunga, Saquisili and Pujili.
Day 1: Departure from Scandinavia – arrival Cuzco
Departure from Scandinavia to the ancient Indian capital Cuzco in Peru with arrival in the evening the same day. In Cuzco you will be picked up at the airport and driven to your hotel, where you will spend the next two days.
Day 2 & 3: On a voyage of discovery in Cuzco
Two days to explore Cuzco on your own. For example, you can visit the Plaza de Armas, Cuzco’s beautiful historic center, or San Blas, which is teeming with life and activity. You will find nice markets where you can buy fresh fruit, as well as countless shops selling tours and souvenirs. There are many good restaurants serving both local and international dishes. ( F )
Day 4: Sacred Valley and Aguas Calientes
Today the trip goes to the Sacred Valley, which is located just outside Cuzco. If it’s Sunday, the first stop is at the large Native American market in Pisac. Here the local women come a long way in their colorful skirts to sell their wares. You will find a large selection of souvenirs, including colorful ponchos, hats, gloves, and of course pan flutes and other musical instruments. Then the tour continues to the impressive Inca fortress in Ollantaytambo, where you get an exciting tour and insight into history. From Ollantaytambo, the tour continues by train through the mountains along the Urubamba River to Aguas Calientes, where the legendary ruin of Machu Picchu is located. Upon arrival at the train station, you go on your own to your overnight stop, which is about 10 minutes from the station. ( F , L )
Day 5: On adventures in Machu Picchu and Cuzco
Early in the morning, your English-speaking guide will meet you and take you by bus the short distance up to Machu Picchu. Your guide will give you a four-hour tour and tell you about the place’s great historical and religious significance. Next to Machu Picchu is Mount Wayna Picchu. Wayna Picchu is 2,720 meters high and is 360 meters higher than Machu Picchu. From here you get a magnificent panoramic view of the entire ruin area. It takes about an hour to get up, but it is a tough hike with small steep steps, and you have to be in good shape to reach the top. Only a limited number of visitors are allowed to climb the summit per day, so if this is something you want to experience, you should book a place and pay for it from home. At noon you take a bus back to Aguas Calientes, from there by train back to Ollantaytambo and from there by bus the last bit to Cuzco. In Cuzco you will be picked up and driven to your hotel. (F )
Day 6: Cuzco to Quito
Today there is a departure from Cuzco (airport transfer not included) via Lima to Quito. Upon arrival in Ecuador, you will be picked up at the airport and driven into the city to your hotel. You can spend the rest of the day as you wish. ( F )
Day 7: On a voyage of discovery in Quito
The capital Quito is beautifully situated in the Andes at an altitude of about 3,000 meters. The city is divided into an old and a modern district. The old town offers beautiful historic Spanish churches, cobbled streets and lots of museums that touch on the country’s history. The modern district offers shopping, restaurants and a lively evening and nightlife. The city is located in a valley surrounded by mountains, and there are many hiking opportunities in the area. Among other things, you can take the lift up to the Cruz Loma lookout point at an altitude of 4,100 meters. From there you can hike up to 4,680 meters altitude and get a fantastic view of the city. Another excursion destination can be “Mitad del Mundo” (“Center of the World”), more specifically the equator, which is located a little north of the city. Here you can stand with one leg on the northern hemisphere and the other on the southern. There are also several exciting sights in the city that are worth a visit. An alternative is a visit to the Church of San Francisco – the oldest church in Ecuador – or a trip to the Plaza de la Independencia, the central square of Quito surrounded by many important buildings such as the Archbishop’s Palace and the Government Building. (F )
Day 8: Quito to the Galapagos and start the cruise with Archipel 1
Early in the day you drive to the airport, where the flight to the Galapagos departs. After arriving at the island of Baltra, where the airport is located, you will be picked up and driven to the port, where you will board the catamaran Archipel which will be your home for the next four days. ( F , L , M) Archipel 1 is a catamaran with room for 16 passengers in eight cabins. With Archipel 1 you get a unique boating experience on the Galapagos Islands. The advantage of riding a catamaran is that it is more stable in the water. It consumes only 1/3 of the fuel that a corresponding motorboat with 14 passengers would consume due to its weight. Weather permitting, it is also possible to turn off the engine completely, hoist sails and glide silently through the spectacular surroundings. There are dining areas both indoors and outdoors. In addition, there is a sun deck and an area for relaxation on the net that is clamped between the two hulls. The crew consists of five people and a skilled, English-speaking guide. Snorkelling equipment and towels can be borrowed free of charge on the boat.
Day 9-10: Galapagos cruise on the catamaran Archipel 1
A day on board a boat off the Galapagos Islands usually starts with breakfast around 07:30. After that, the guide will give a brief introduction about the day’s program and current weather conditions, before the boat with safety distance docks off the coast on the selected island. For the sake of wildlife, you go in a small “panga” (dinghy) to the island itself. When hiking the islands, be sure to stick to marked trails and to follow your guide throughout the tour. You usually get the opportunity for two visits a day, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. Each visit usually lasts 2.5-3 hours. Lunch is served on board while the boat travels on to the afternoon destination. After lunch, there is the opportunity to relax on the deck before the day’s second visit. The National Park’s rules require that all visitors have left the islands no later than 18:00. Dinner is served on board the boat at approx. 19:00, after which the guide briefly goes through the next day’s program. The evening is at your own disposal to relax, read a book, enjoy a drink or go through the day’s experiences with your fellow passengers. (F , L , M )
Day 11: Galapagos Cruise and Santa Cruz
From the island of Santa Cruz we say goodbye to the crew and our fellow passengers on the catamaran Archipel 1. You drive from the boat to your hotel in Puerto Ayora and have the afternoon free at your disposal. You can take a walk along the harbor promenade, where there are many nice restaurants and cafes. At the small fishing port you can see the area’s fishermen coming in with their catch. Here you often see sea lions as well as frigatebirds, pelicans and other birds. ( F )
Day 12: On an adventure on Santa Cruz
The day is free at your disposal. You can visit Charles Darwin Research Station, go swimming in Tortuga Bay, paddle sea kayaks, dive with hammerhead sharks at Gordon Rocks, surf at Ratonera Beach, mountain bike in Santa Cruz Highlands, take a ride in the volcanic terrain or snorkel among coral sharks, iguanas and sea lions at Punta Estrada. ( F )
Day 13: Galapagos to Cotopaxi National Park
Today there is a departure from the Galapagos (airport transfer not included) to Quito. Upon arrival in Quito, you will be picked up at the airport and driven to your lodge in Cotopaxi National Park. You can spend the rest of the day as you wish. ( F )
Day 14-15: On adventures in and around Cotopaxi National Park
You have two full days free at your disposal in Cotopaxi National Park. You can go cycling, horse riding, hiking or mountain biking in the area, or visit the local markets in the towns of Saquisili and Pujili. You can also light the fire, open a good book and enjoy the beautiful view of the Cotopaxi volcano. Here are excellent opportunities to be active as well as just relax and digest all the fantastic experiences you have had on your trip. ( F )
Day 16: Latacunga and departure from Ecuador
You will be picked up at your lodge in the morning and driven by private transport to the Latacunga. The big market days are Tuesday and Saturday and then you really get to experience a real Ecuadorian market, one that is far less touristy than other markets in Ecuador. Other days you visit the smaller markets with a focus on food and local atmosphere. Enjoy the atmosphere, shop around and try some of the local dishes before you drive to the airport to start your journey home to Scandinavia. ( F )
Day 17: Arrival in Scandinavia
Arrival in Scandinavia. Arrival time depends on your airline.
Eleven nights at hotel / lidge
Three nights aboard the catamaran Archipel 1