Expedition Overview

Expedition Overview

  • Spend an entire day at Machu Picchu exploring the mysterious ruins and hiking the surrounding slopes in search of stunning views.
  • Meet artisans, bakers, and more to experience ancient Andean traditions firsthand.
  • Join National Geographic grantee Nilda Callañaupa for a hands-on demonstration of traditional Peruvian weaving techniques.
  • Alongside a local chef, enjoy a pachamanca, a traditional Andean meal baked in the earth.

Itinerary

Itinerary

Introduce your family to the mysteries of the Inca and the vibrant traditions of the Andes on this fascinating journey to Peru. Venture into Inca fortresses and towns built of giant boulders, and get immersed in the swirl of colors and crafts at a village market. Try your hand at traditional weaving and go hiking among salt terraces and ancient ruins. A spectacular train ride brings us high into the Andean peaks to amazing Machu Picchu for a full day of exploration in this lost citadel of the Inca.

Day 1: Lima, Peru

Welcome to Peru, land of the Inca! This evening is free to rest up for our adventure.

Accommodations:Wyndham Costa del Sol Lima Airport Hotel
Day 2: Cusco/Sacred Valley

Meet the rest of the group and fly to the Inca capital of Cusco. Explore the Sacsayhuamán fortress, made with 100-ton stones that fit together so tightly that not even a sheet of paper can slide between. After lunch and a walk in the colorful market town of Pisac, enter the Sacred Valley of the Inca, our stomping ground for the next three days. Our welcome dinner features delicious Peruvian cuisine.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:

Aranwa Sacred Valley Hotel & Wellness

Day 3: Sacred Valley

In Peru, weaving is all about ritual and culture. National Geographic grantee Nilda Callañaupa welcomes us to her Center for Traditional Textiles where you can dye wool, spin yarn, or set up a loom. Later, hike among glittering salt terraces in Maras or enjoy a llama trek through villages and learn about the important role they have played for centuries.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:

Aranwa Sacred Valley Hotel & Wellness

Day 4: Sacred Valley

Join a master chef and local farmers for a traditional Andean meal baked in the ground, known locally as a pachamanca. Explore Ollantaytambo, a classic Inca valley town, then hop the train toward Machu Picchu, passing breathtaking mountain vistas. Nestled below the legendary citadel is our stunning hotel—a member of the National Geographic Unique Lodges of the World collection.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:This night includes a stay at a National Geographic Unique Lodge.
Inkaterra Machu Picchu Hotel is a haven of Andean charm tucked into the tropical forests just beneath the Inca citadel of Machu Picchu.
Day 5: Machu Picchu

Machu Picchu is one of the world’s most amazing sights. Spend an entire day exploring the ruins, hiking the steep peaks and pondering the mysteries of this “lost” city of the Inca, forgotten at the Spanish conquest and only rediscovered to the West in 1911 by Hiram Bingham with funding from National Geographic.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:

Inkaterra Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel

Day 6: Sacred Valley/Cusco

Ride back up the valley by train to sample pan chuta, a sweet flat bread baked in traditional clay ovens. Then young explorers will meet new Peruvian friends as they play soccer, participate in an art project, and try out their Spanish. This evening, enjoy a special farewell dinner in the Museum of Pre-Columbian Art.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:

Hotel Libertador Palacio del Inka

Day 7: Cusco/Lima

Today, we explore the marvelous streets and plazas of Cusco, once lavishly adorned with Inca gold that was stolen by the Spanish during the conquest. This afternoon return to Lima for your overnight flight home.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch

Extensions

Extensions

  • Peru Family: Post-Trip Amazon Extension
    5 days from $2,190
Peru Family: Post-Trip Amazon Extension

Extend your Andes cultural adventure with a journey to the Amazon—the wild side of Peru! Travel by boat to a lodge deep in the jungle, and spend several fun-filled days with your family exploring this paradise of biodiversity. Discover an astonishing array of flora and fauna on rainforest hikes by day and, if you dare, in the mysterious dark of night. Search for rare wildlife species while paddling a dugout canoe along the shores of a beautiful mirror lake. Follow a suspension trail high in the forest canopy, peering into a pristine world only recently seen by humans. Throughout your adventure, stay at a beautiful eco-lodge that provides an ideal base for exploring this magical and vital corner the planet.

Day 1: Cusco

Delve deeper into the city’s historic center, and discover the architectural details of stately neighborhoods and secret courtyards. Shop for colorful textiles, alpaca wool sweaters, or silver jewelry in the crafts markets, and watch local artisans at work in their shops. This evening, dinner on your own and then prepare for the next leg of your journey.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch
Day 2: Puerto Maldonado/Inkaterra Reserva

This morning, transfer to the airport for a flight to Puerto Maldonado. Drive to a wharf along the Madre de Dios River, a headwater tributary of the mighty Amazon, and board a motorized canoe ride to the lodge, our base for exploring the magic of the rainforest and the Amazon basin. Settle into a private cabaña at this beautiful eco-property situated at the heart of a vast private ecological reserve, adjacent to Tambopata National Reserve. The lodge offers many opportunities to explore the incredible biodiversity of the area on foot and by boat. After lunch at the lodge, meet your local Inkaterra guide, who will accompany you throughout your adventure, sharing a wealth of knowledge about this natural wonderland. Get acquainted with the rainforest on a guided walk along the lodge’s extensive trail system. In the evening, return to the river by canoe to witness the jungle’s transformation at sunset. Listen to the cacophonous symphony of nocturnal animals and birds calling out across the treetops, and keep an eye out for unusual insect species, which our guide will help to identify.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:

Inkaterra Reserva Amazónica or Inkaterra Hacienda Concepción

Day 3: Tambopata National Reserve

After breakfast, journey to Sandoval Lake—a stunning, oxbow mirror lake located in Tambopata National Reserve. Explore the lake by dugout canoe, and watch for endangered river otters, along with side-neck turtles, anacondas, black caimans, and boisterous red howler monkeys—appropriately named for their distinctive cry. Keep a lookout in the trees along the shore for flashy, red-bellied macaws. Return to the lodge for lunch. In the afternoon, we’ll take to the treetops along one of South America’s longest canopy walkways, an extraordinary network of hanging bridges, towers, and platforms stretching more than a quarter mile above the jungle. The walkway offers amazing views into a world that, until recently, only a few scientists had ever witnessed. During our expedition, keep an eye out for diverse wildlife including colorful toucans, woodpeckers, monkeys, and sloths. Learn about the flora and fauna of the forest, and pause with your cameras on the observation decks. Return to the lodge for a nature presentation to learn more about the species we’ve encountered, followed by dinner.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 4: Inkaterra Reserva

This morning, travel upriver by motorized canoe to a winding, deep-water creek that is home to caimans, turtles, and an array of colorful birds. Get immersed in the sights and sounds of the jungle as we glide along the water. On our return, stop at a local farm to learn how fruits and vegetables are grown in the region. After lunch back at the lodge, take a walk through the lovely botanical gardens of Hacienda Concepción, home to more than 200 tropical species. Next, climb into a dugout canoe for an exploratory excursion to look for turtles, sun-grebes, nightjars, and exotic herons. Later this evening, head out on a guided adventure along the trails surrounding the lodge to experience the mystery of the rainforest after dark. Listen to the nocturnal serenade of the forest, and spot elusive species that only emerge at night.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:This night includes a stay at a National Geographic Unique Lodge.
Sheltered by an intricate forest canopy, the screened-in cabanas of Inkaterra Hacienda Concepción reveal the sights, sounds, and scents of the Amazon Rain Forest.
Day 5: Puerto Maldonado/Lima/U.S.

After breakfast, return by motorized canoe to Puerto Maldonado and stop at the Inkaterra Butterfly House near the airport, which showcases many of the estimated 3,800 butterfly species of Peru. Then fly to Lima, saying adiós to Peru as you connect with your overnight flight home.

Meals Included:Breakfast