CROSSING THE LAKE TITICACA TO LA PAZ BOLIVIA
10 DAYS: LIMA, CUSCO, URUBAMBA, MACHU PICCHU, PUNO, SUN ISLAND & LA PAZ
Day 01 LIMA
Arrival in Lima. Reception and transfer to the hotel. Afternoon visit to Colonial and Modern Lima. Guided tour through the historic center of the city. Admire the beauty of San Martin and Major squares, the Cathedral, the Government Palace and visit the Convent of San Francisco and its catacombs, a religious building from the end of the XVI century. Drive through the residential districts of San Isidro and Miraflores.
Day 02 LIMA – CUSCO
Transfer to the airport for the flight to Cusco. Upon arrival transfer to the hotel. Balance of the morning at leisure to adjust to the high altitude (11,000 feet). Afternoon city tour and nearby ruins. Visit Main Square, the Cathedral and its religious Art Museum, the Church of Santo Domingo or Koricancha, This tour includes visits to Sacsayhuaman and Puca Pucara fortresses, the temple and amphitheater of Kenko and the water shrine of Tambomachay. (Breakfast).
Day 03 CUSCO – URUBAMBA
Full day bus excursion to the village of Pisac. Visit the authentic and traditional Indian Market, where Indians barter their products. Continue through the Urubamba Valley to Ollantaytambo, favorite residence of the Incas, with its terraces running up the steep slope to the top where a carved stone throne allowed the ruler a magnificent view of his holdings. You will also see the fabulous Inca ruins of Ollantaytambo. Lunch included. Overnight at one of the nice countryside hotels in the area. (Breakfast – Lunch).
Day 04 URUBAMBA – MACHU PICCHU
Morning transfer to the train station. Train takes us through the Sacred Valley of the Incas up to the town of Aguas Calientes. From here, we will board a bus to the mountaintop citadel of Machu Picchu. We will then have a guided tour of the ruins. Machu Picchu, the Lost City of the Incas, was a flourishing ceremonial and agricultural site, probably the gateway to the jungle marshes of the Inca empire. The central buildings were erected with the polished stone works of the Cuzco Imperial style, though the site was probably occupied well before the Incas started their expansion. It was associated with the earth cult revolving around the coca leaf, which was a privilege of the Inca royal family and priests. Guided tour. You will have time to enjoy a light lunch or snack and return to your hotel at your leisure. In the evening, we will enjoy a wonderful dinner at the hotel or in Machu Picchu Pueblo. Overnight at one of the hotels in the area. (Breakfast – Dinner).
Day 05 MACHU PICCHU – CUSCO
Morning at leisure. You may choose to return to Machu Picchu, hike Huayna Picchu or relax in the village of Aguas Calientes and its hot springs. Mid afternoon departure by train to Cusco. Upon arrival transfer to your hotel. (Breakfast).
Note: Entrance tickets to Machu Picchu on this day are not included. Please advise if you go back to the ruins or hike the Wayna Picchu at time of booking (subject to availability)
Day 06 CUSCO – PUNO
Transfer to the station to take the bus or *train to Puno (approx. 9 hours). Reception and transfer to your hotel. (Breakfast – Lunch).
*Andean Explorer Train from Cuzco to Puno (Monday, Wednesday and Saturday): Fantastic train ride that takes a gentle climb to higher and cooler altitudes. The first half of the journey is dominated by the magnificent Andean mountains which tower over the deep valleys of the meandering Huatanay River. It then reaches the gentler, rolling Andean Plains, where vicuña and alpaca can be seen. The glass-walled observation car provides the perfect opportunity to view the beautiful scenery. The journey is broken by a scenic stop at La Raya, which is also the highest point on the route. Three-course lunch included. Restaurant and bar service is available at an additional cost. Train leaves Cuzco at 8 am and arrives in Puno at 5:30 pm.
Day 07 PUNO – LAKE TITICACA – COPACABANA – MOON ISLAND-SUN ISLAND
Pick up from hotel in Puno and overland transfer to Copacabana, Bolivia. En route we will stop at the church of Pomata. Upon arrival in Copacabana, we will visit the famous shrine of the Dark Virgin. Then we will board a hydrofoil cruise that will take us to Moon Island, and visit the Sun Virgins Temple “Iñak Uyu”. Continue to the Sun Island, to visit the “Pilcocaina” Sun Temple. Llama trek to “Posada del Inca” (25 to 40 minute trek), and enjoy lunch at “Posada del Inca Eco Lodge”. Afternoon at leisure to explore the surroundings, and dinner at the Posada del Inca Eco Lodge. (Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner). Note: Soft trekking involved.
Day 08 SUN ISLAND – CRUISE TO HUATAJATA – LA PAZ
After breakfast, visit the Inca “Grand Stairs” and the Sacred fountain, where we will drink the water believed to give eternal youth and happiness. We will enjoy lunch at the “Uma Kollu” archaeological restaurant, and visit the small handicraft market. After lunch, take the hydrofoil cruise to Huatajata, where we will visit the “Andean Roots Eco Village”: The Altiplano Museum; Handicrafts village, the Mud Igloos and the mortuary towers of the Urus Chipayas. We will meet the Limachi family, builders of the RA II and Tigris for epic expeditions across the Atlantic Ocean. Bus transfer to La Paz, on a road is running parallel with the Royal Range of the Andes. Arrival to La Paz and transfer to your hotel. (Breakfast).
Day 09 LA PAZ – THE WITCHES MARKET – MOON VALLEY – LA PAZ
This one-day tour takes you through indigenous, colonial and contemporary areas, all beneath the gaze of the imposing snow-capped Mount Illimani. You will visit the fruit and vegetable markets and see the biodiversity with which Bolivia is blessed. There is also an art and contemporary design market where impeccable handicrafts are made. The Witches’ Market is an obligatory stop on the route: a perfect example of the syncretism prevalent in this country. There is also an excursion to the Moon Valley, whose clay formations resemble the surface of the moon. Here you can easily disengage from modern life and enter a parallel universe in another time and dimension. (Breakfast)
Day 10 LA PAZ – FLIGHT HOME
Transfer to the airport to take the flight back home, or continue on the extension of your choice. (Breakfast).
End of service
PUNO- LAKE TITICACA- COPACABANA- MOON ISLAND – SUN ISLAND- PUNO
2 DAYS: PUNO – HUATAJATA – LA PAZ