Combine the Andean highlights of two diverse countries on this 11-day tour. Explore the Inca sites of Peru, including Cusco, the Sacred Valley and Machu Picchu. Then travel south by train through high Andean plains to spectacular Lake Titicaca, and cross into Bolivia to the unworldly Valley of the Moon, before exploring two contrasting capital cities: La Paz and Lima.

Highlights

  • Explore the heart of the Inca Empire in Cusco
  • Discover the Sacred Valley and stunning citadel of Machu Picchu
  • Cross the Andes onboard the luxury Titicaca Train
  • See the islands of Lake Titicaca by Catamaran, crossing from Peru to Bolivia
  • Explore the unworldly Valley of the Moon
  • Tour the two capital cities of La Paz and Lima

Overview

Peru is well-known for its rich culture and history. With this 11-day experience, you will discover many of the most important sites of the Inca Empire, including Machu Picchu, one of the new Seven Wonders of the World. After a day in Lima, you'll continue to Cusco, where you can walk the narrow streets of this historic town before exploring the sites of Sacasayhuaman, Pisac and Ollantaytambo in the Sacred Valley.

From Cusco, this itinerary continues with a luxury train ride south to Puno before crossing the stunning Lake Titicaca by catamaran to Bolivia. Here you'll discover the surreal landscape of the Valley of the Moon and the remarkable Tiwanaku Temple before touring the highest capital city in the world, La Paz. From La Paz, you'll return to Lima to explore the historic Old Town and enjoy some of the finest food in Latin America.

Brief itinerary

Day  Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Lima, free time to explore Lima
Day 2 Fly to Cusco, free time to explore Cusco
Day 3 Sacred Valley tour Urubamba
Day 4 Machu Picchu tour, return to Cusco Cusco
Day 5 Cusco city tour Cusco
Day 6 Cusco to Puno by train Puno
Day 7 Lake Titicaca, Sun Island and La Paz La Paz
Day 8 Valley of the Moon, La Paz city tour La Paz
Day 9 Tiwanaku Temple, return to Puno Puno
Day 10 Fly to Lima, city tour Lima
Day 11 Depart Lima  

Detailed itinerary

Day 1: Discover Lima

Pedestrians enjoy a leisurely day in Lima's Plaza Mayor.

Arrive at Lima Airport and transfer to the hotel of your choice. The rest of the day is at your leisure in this vibrant and cosmopolitan city. Explore the city's neighborhoods and museums, and feast on seafood specialities in the evening. A great intro to the city is a walking tour in the colonial heart of town, from Plaza San Martín to Mercado Central, with a stop at Plaza de Armas. 

Day 2: Arrive in the heart of the Inca Empire

View of Plaza de Armas in Cusco, the historic capital of the Inca Empire. 

Cusco, the capital city of the Incas, lies over 11,000 ft. above sea level. You arrive at the airport, transfer to your hotel, then enjoy a free afternoon to explore the Inca and colonial Spanish highlights of the city at your own pace. 

Day 3: Explore the Sacred Valley

Pisac has an attractive market and spectacular Inca ruins above the town

You’ll have this day to enjoy the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Here you can choose from two tour options: visit the salt flats of Maras and discover their ancestral techniques, then combine this with Moray, impressive terraces for crop cultivation with their own micro-climates.

Another option – and perhaps more spectacular – is to visit Pisac. There, you will visit the stunning ruins above the town and the colorful market where you can shop for unique handicrafts. From here, continue to Ollantaytambo, an ancient town of the Inca that continues to thrive today. Stay overnight in Urubamba in the heart of the Sacred Valley.

Day 4: Visit the Lost City of the Incas

Machu Picchu, one of the new Seven Wonders of the World. 

Today is the highlight for many visitors. You will visit Machu Picchu, one of the Seven Wonders of the World, a breathtaking set of ruins in a unique cloud forest location. This Inca citadel was chosen in 1983 as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

You start by taking a bus from Urubamba to the train station at Ollantaytambo, then take the train to Aguas Calientes and the bus up to Machu Picchu. After a 2-hour guided tour of the walls, temples and terraces, you will have free time to explore the site on your own and enjoy the natural beauty of the site. When you are ready, you will take the bus back to Aguas Calientes, and then the train back to Cusco. You then transfer back to your hotel so you can relax.

Day 5: Cusco City Tour

Traditional weaving techniques are still used in the villages around Cusco.

You will explore the capital of the Inca Empire, Cusco. First, you will visit the San Pedro market where you can get a taste of the local textiles and food of the region. Afterwards, you will visit Coricancha or the “Sun Temple”. When the Spaniards arrived in the city, they converted this temple into the Santo Domingo Church: the unique mix of the two cultures can still be seen in its construction.

Finally you arrive at the fortress of Sacsayhuaman, known for the enormous stones that make up this important site, which was the scene of the final Inca defeat in Cusco.

Day 6: Cusco to Puno on the Titicaca Train

The Titicaca Train journeys through fabulous Andean scenery

Today you will start your amazing journey to Puno on the Titicaca Train. Crossing the Andes on the Cusco to Puno route and visiting Lake Titicaca is an unforgettable experience. The comfortable PeruRail Titicaca train features an open-air observation car, allowing you to sit back and enjoy the majestic views of the high Andean plains while enjoying the traditional music and dance of the Peruvian highlands through onboard performances.

After a 10-hour journey, you will arrive in Puno and transfer to your hotel to rest. Note that the Cusco-Puno PeruRail train only departs on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays.

Day 7: Lake Titicaca by Catamaran, Sun Island and La Paz

The Uru people of Lake Titicaca live on floating islands made from reeds.

Early in the morning, you will start your trip by going to Copacabana overland. You will visit the Virgen de Copacabana Sanctuary briefly, then board the Catamaran Cruise. Enjoy the stunning views of Lake Titicaca, heading towards the Sun Island, where the Inca Empire was born. On this legendary Island, you will visit its gardens and Inca Fountain before exploring the Inti Wata Complex, the main attraction in Bolivia.

You will have a unique experience of traveling in a handmade Totora boat and visit the Inca Palace of Pilkokaina. Finally, you will board the Catamaran again and continue on your way to Copacabana as you enjoy a buffet lunch. Once you arrive, you will go to La Paz overland.

Day 8: Valley of the Moon and La Paz City Tour

Bolivia's spectacular Valley of the Moon. 

You will begin by traveling south to the Valley of the Moon, formed over thousands of years due to wind and water erosion. At a distance of only 10 km from the center of La Paz, the sand and rock formations here resemble a moonscape. In the Valley of the Moon, you will walk for about half an hour. Then you will visit Miraflores town to see the Hernando Siles Stadium and the archaeological Plaza.

Continuing the tour, you visit the Killi Killi viewpoint in La Paz to enjoy views of the majestic Illimani Mountain and the urban landscape of the city. Then you visit the Old Town of La Paz, admiring the Plaza Pedro Domingo Murillo with the Governmental Palace, the National Congress and the Metropolitan Cathedral. You should already be acclimatized by the time you reach La Paz, the highest capital city in the world at 11,942 ft above sea level. 

Day 9: Temple of Tiwanaku and Puno

Tiwanaku, a Pre-Columbian archaeological site in western Bolivia.

In the morning, you will travel through the Andes to Tiwanaku, an archaeological site that is one of the oldest in the Andean culture. Its ruins showcase the perfection of the Inca techniques.

You’ll visit the Pyramid of Akapana, the temple of Kalasasaya, the Door of the Sun, Monolitos Fraile, and the semi-underground temple to further understand the Inca culture. After your visit, you will cross the Peruvian frontier to start your trip back to Puno.

Day 10: Lima City Tour

View of the coastline in Lima from Barranco, a district in the south of Lima.

In the morning you will say goodbye to the Andes and return to Lima. After you arrive at your hotel and have lunch, you will start the city tour. You can admire some of the best examples of colonial architecture, including The San Martin Plaza, Paseo de la República, the Plaza de Armas, the Central Bank Museum and the San Francisco Convent.

The tour ends with a visit to the more modern districts of San Isidro, Miraflores and Larcomar Point, where you can feel the breeze from the Pacific Ocean. Relax in your hotel or venture out to enjoy some of the best cuisine on the continent.

Day 11: Depart Lima

View of the Peruvian coastline. 

After breakfast, transfer to the airport to catch your international flight.

 

Recent Trip Reviews

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Explore peru and bolivia - 13 days, Peru - Sep 9 - Sep 21, 2018

Traveler: Jason P. - Local specialist: Clara Gies

I would like to wish everybody that made my trip so memorable a HUGE thank you. Thank you KimKim for the ease of which you made booking and organizing my recent trip to Peru and Bolivia.

I had been wanting to do this trip for a long time but had previously been put off just thinking of all the organisation it would take. One day I happened to type in to google 'Peru and Bolivia' and their 11 day itinerary popped up, which was exactly what I wanted to do and see. Once I contacted KimKim... read more

I would like to wish everybody that made my trip so memorable a HUGE thank you. Thank you KimKim for the ease of which you made booking and organizing my recent trip to Peru and Bolivia.

I had been wanting to do this trip for a long time but had previously been put off just thinking of all the organisation it would take. One day I happened to type in to google 'Peru and Bolivia' and their 11 day itinerary popped up, which was exactly what I wanted to do and see. Once I contacted KimKim they transferred me to the Wonderful Clara who was AMAZING. She was quick to respond to all my questions and happy to swap and change out the Itinerary. When we were there the tour operators, drivers and guides could not have been more helpful. The only time we had to wait was when I was an hour early for a meeting! Seriously they were never late and the trip worked like clockwork. I spoke to some other travelers who were only complaining about their tour company.

Thank you KimKim and a MASSIVE thank you to Clara and her team. You made the holiday so enjoyable. I definitely recommend KimKim and if going to Peru ask for Clara she's wonderful.

Thank you, thank you, thank you. Jason - London