Live the main festival of the Andean Culture, Wawa Inti Raymi (the sun child festival) on the day of the Winter Solstice, celebrated on June 24, complementing the experience with the archaeological and colonial Cusco City, through the Sacred Valley, ending in the majestic Sanctuary of Inca of Machu Picchu.
You’ll arrive at the international airport in Lima (the majority of flights arrive at night between 8pm and 2am). Our team will be waiting with a private vehicle to take you to the hotel of your choice. Depending on your flight schedule, you will have the opportunity to visit some of the most important sites and museums in Lima. (Optional).
Early in the morning, you’ll return to the Lima airport to take your flight to Cusco, the former capital of the Inca Empire. Upon your arrival, the Land of the Inkas team will be waiting to greet you. During the trip to the center in a private vehicle, the guide will give a brief introductory talk about the city. You’ll have the rest of the day free to acclimatize, relax and enjoy the exceptional atmosphere in Cusco, home to the some of the most amazing history and culture in South America.
On the third day, we’ll visit the most important tourist sites in the city and its surroundings. This is an opportunity to try new things and to learn about the history of Cusco and the daily life of its people. Our destinations today include churches, museums and archeological sites. In the afternoon, we’ll visit the fortress of Saqsaywaman and the complexes of Qenqo, Pucapucara and Tambomachay. All of these were highly important sites in the Inca religion and are located close to Cusco. After our explorations, we’ll return you to your hotel to spend the night.
We’ll continue our excursion by heading out to the Sacred Valley, which awaits us with its warmer climate. The town of Pisac is our first stop. All along the road out to the ruins there, you can see remains of Inca agricultural activity. You’ll take in the sweeping panoramic views of the Andean mountains and visit the towns of Calca and Urubamba. After lunch, our journey continues towards Ollantaytambo, whose layout still shows signs of Inca planning, with its cobbled streets and Inca fort. We will spend the night in a hotel here.
We’ll depart for Machu Picchu from Ollantaytambo by train, a journey which follows the course of the Urubamba river for around 1.5 hours. Our destination is the thickly vegetated land with high peaks that shelters the town of Aguas Calientes. After lunch, a bus will carry us to the ruins of Machu Picchu, recognized as one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. Your guide will go into depth about the history and archeology of the Machu Picchu Historical Sanctuary. We’ll also have time to appreciate the cloud forest which surrounds the site before returning by bus to Aguas Calientes and your hotel.
Early on the following day, we’ll return to Machu Picchu in bus to enjoy the early morning light and thinner crowds. We’ll then climb the steep path up to Huayna Picchu. This is a fascinating archeological site in its own right, but it also offers a commanding view of Machu Picchu in its entirety. In the afternoon, we’ll return to Aguas Calientes to take the return train to Ollantaytambo where our bus will be waiting for us. On the way back, we’ll be able to visit to town of Chinchero before returning to your hotel in Cusco.
On this penultimate day, you’ll experience one of the most traditional ceremonies in Cusco: Inti Raymi (The Sun Festival). The Qoricancha (Temple of the Sun) is the perfect setting for this exuberant celebration, a representation of what the ceremony would have been like in Inca times. The Sapa Inca (the emperor) would give speeches of gratitude to the sun and petition it for favors. The party continues with a procession of dancers towards the Inca fort of Saqsaywaman. Here, a traditional offering to the Earth Mother “Pachamama” will be performed to ensure bountiful harvests and secure the protection of the sun. At the end of the ceremony, we’ll return you to Cusco to celebrate the Andean New Year and enjoy the comforts of your hotel.
On the last day, we’ll bring you to the airport for your return flight to Lima and your connecting flight home.
* In case you want to visit any additional sites, you can add extensions on to your original package. If you choose an extension, we’ll organize the connection to your next destination. Someone from the Land of the Inkas team will accompany you to ensure that you make your connection and that everything goes smoothly.