Explore the culture and color of Peru with this unique vacation package. Included are the traditional sites in the region of Cusco and all the best highlights of the Inca Civilization. This classic tour allows you to experience Peruvian life up close, as we spend a day in a local community in the Andes Mountains, where people still dress in their traditional clothing, and then we get up close and personal in the islands of Lake Titicaca.
Our amazing tour guides will lead you throughout the ancient city, wonder by wonder – special for your own private group! You will learn about ceremonies, how people lived, and how they connected with the Pacha Mama – or “Mother Earth”. Our local guide will give you inside information passed down so that you will get the real story of what happened here.
Machu Picchu is tangible evidence of the urban Inca Empire at the peak of its power and achievement—a citadel of cut stone fit together without mortar so tightly that its cracks still can’t be penetrated by a knife blade. It stands 2,430 m above sea-level, in the middle of a tropical mountain forest, in an extraordinarily beautiful setting. It was probably the most amazing urban creation of the Inca Empire at its height; its giant walls, terraces and ramps seem as if they have been cut naturally in the continuous rock escarpments. The natural setting, on the eastern slopes of the Andes, encompasses the upper Amazon basin with its rich diversity of fauna. It is situated on a mountain ridge above the Sacred Valley which is 80 kilometers (50 mi) northwest of Cusco and through which the Urubamba River flows.
The complex of palaces and plazas, temples and homes may have been built as a ceremonial site, a military stronghold, or a retreat for ruling elites—its dramatic location is certainly well suited for any of those purposes. The ruins lie on a high ridge, surrounded on three sides by the windy, turbulent Urubamba River some 2,000 feet (610 meters) below.
The Inca’s achievements and skills are all the more impressive in light of the knowledge they lacked. When Machu Picchu was built some 500 years ago the Inca had no iron, no steel, and no wheels. Their tremendous effort apparently benefited relatively few people—some experts maintain that fewer than a thousand individuals lived here
Machu Picchu was built in the classical Inca style, with polished dry-stone walls. Its three primary structures are the Inti Watana, the Temple of the Sun, and the Room of the Three Windows, of which your tour will visit all three – and plenty more!
You will have a full guided tour by your English speaking guide. After that you will have plenty of time on your own to explore and enjoy Machu Picchu, and discover the wonders of the ancient city yourself!
You will also have the opportunity to choose to go rafting on the wild Willkamayu River – a unique once in a lifetime experience on this ‘sacred river’ in Quechua! Enjoy the sites and sounds – and thrills! – of your group riding the waves.