This 7-day itinerary offers a great balance of exploring Cusco and the Sacred Valley, while including a private tour of Machu Picchu. Choose from a selection of great adventures — mountain biking, horseback riding or zip-lining — and spend a night in the beautiful local village of Ollantaytambo.

Overview map

Route map
Overvew map of the Sacred Valley & Machu Picchu Tour 

Brief itinerary

Day Destination Highlight
Day 1 Cusco Get settled in Cusco
Day 2 Cusco City cultural & historical tour
Day 3 Sacred Valley Choose your adventure
Day 4 Ollantaytambo Culture tours & overnight
Day 5 Machu Picchu Private tour of Machu Picchu
Day 6 Cusco Free day in Cusco
Day 7 Cusco Departure

Detailed itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Cusco

Cusco
Courtyard of the Church fo Santo Domingo in the Coricancha

You’ll be picked up at the airport by private transport and taken to your hotel in Cusco to settle in. Due to Cusco’s high elevation at 3400m, it’s best to have the day free to help you acclimatize. Spend the day exploring the beautiful squares and alleyways of Cusco, along with the great restaurants for which we can give you some recommendations. But it’s always a good idea to take it easy and rest this first day.

Day 2: Cusco city tour

Tambomachay Inca ruins
The Tambomachay Inca Ruins just outside of Cusco

Focused on the history, architecture, and beauty of Cusco, we will send you on a half-day private city tour with an English-speaking guide. It starts in the ruins of Tambomachay and you will have a nice hike down into Cusco visiting other sites along the way. You’ll also stop for lunch at one of our favorite restaurants in Cusco.

Day 3: Day of Adventure

Today you have a choice of three unique activities options, depending on what you’re most interested in:

1) Inca Legends Bike Ride (Full Day)

Inca Legends Bike Ride
Descending into the Apurimac river canyon on the Inca Legends Bike trip (© Alex Buri)

Perfect for beginner/intermediate riders that want to see the less traveled countryside of Peru. You’ll take off on a private shuttle from Cusco through breathtaking mountain views to your starting point of 4,218 meters. From there, we’ll soar downhill on a combination of wide, paved and dirt roads that eventually reach the powerful Apurimac river.

We’ll have an authentic Peruvian lunch with some local friends and ride through small Peruvian towns and villages. This is an amazing route to ride a bike on, with plenty of opportunities to take photos, see the local life, and last but not least bask in an array of waterfalls.

2) Horseback riding in the Andes (Full Day)

We offer a horse riding tour that is not a walk in the corral. You climb high into the mountains surrounding Cusco and visit some hidden away Inca ruins. 

3) ATV and zip line in the Sacred Valley (Full Day)

zip line in sacred valley
Zip-lining above the Sacred Valley (© Natura Vive)

Enjoy a 3-4 hour zip-line tour with unbelievable panoramic views, then ride a quad bike through the old town of Maras, and visit the salt mines of the Incas and Moray. Entrance to Moray is included, the salt mines cost 10 soles and you pay at the gate.

If you chose to do either the bike ride or horseback you would sleep in Cusco; if you went on the four wheel/zip line tour you would sleep in Ollantaytambo.

Day 4: Day in the Sacred Valley

Maras salt mines
Either hike, bike, or ATV down into the salt mines of Maras

If you sleep in Cusco, you will take a private car to Ollantaytambo stopping at the salt mines and Moray. If you slept in Ollantaytambo, then you get to sleep in and enjoy the village. You can go on some hikes to the ruins in town. Ollantaytambo is a beautiful authentic village, with cobblestone pathways and older family homes. On top of that, we have a beautiful local home for you to stay out in the heart of the village.

Day 5: Private Tour of Machu Picchu

Machu Picchu
The citadel of Machu Picchu perched above the Urubamba River

Rise and shine early today as you take the first train in the morning to Aguas Calientes, the small village at the base of Machu Picchu. An English-speaking guide will be waiting for you and you can either hike up (45 minutes) or take the bus (20 minutes) to MP. You will have a private guided tour and the opportunity to hike La Montana (Machu Picchu mountain). Here is where you can get in some good hiking. It’s a strenuous hike, but you'll be well rewarded. In the evening, you will return to Cusco by Vistadome train.

Day 6: Free day in Cusco

Cusco
Plaza de Armas central square in Cusco

Today, you'll have another free day to explore Cusco and do some last-minute shopping. It's also another chance to enjoy some of the fantastic restaurants Cusco has to offer. If you would like to arrange another half-day or full-day activity in or around Cusco, we'd be happy to arrange this. There are also cooking classes in Cusco, for those who would like to learn how to make some local Peruvian dishes.

Day 7: Departure

Depending on when your flight out of Cusco, we can suggest some places to sightsee in the morning before providing private transport to the airport. 

Recent Trip Reviews

Related trips planned by kimkim specialists
Jillian

Lima, sacred valley & machu picchu tour - 7 days, Peru - Feb 25 - Mar 3, 2018

Traveler: Jillian M. - Local specialist: Stephanie Guerra

I am so thankful to have used KimKim for my trip to Peru and have Stephanie as my local specialist. We had only 7 days to explore Lima, Cusco, the Sacred Valley and Machu Pichu and Stephanie made it all fit perfectly. Every detail was figured out, which was such a relief because travel between these sites requires multiple forms of transport -- from arrival at the airport to departure from the trip we had train tickets or buses tickets or private drivers waiting for us at each leg. She made... read more

I am so thankful to have used KimKim for my trip to Peru and have Stephanie as my local specialist. We had only 7 days to explore Lima, Cusco, the Sacred Valley and Machu Pichu and Stephanie made it all fit perfectly. Every detail was figured out, which was such a relief because travel between these sites requires multiple forms of transport -- from arrival at the airport to departure from the trip we had train tickets or buses tickets or private drivers waiting for us at each leg. She made sure all of our tours had excellent English speakers (on later legs of my travel that I planned on my own, I quickly learned how varied English capabilities can be and how difficult it can be to determine the quality of English of the guides without local knowledge of the companies). Every tour/driver/guide we worked with were incredibly professional, punctual, polite, kind and helpful. Stephanie was readily available when we had a minor payment issue at one hotel and took care of it. I can't say enough about our experience traveling with KimKim and Stephanie! Thank you! You truly took the stress out of travel and made a wonderful, memorable experience for me and my brother!