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La Paz to Cuzco

12 days with Intrepid Travel   Rating: Budget

Itinerary
Click for Dates and Prices
Day 1: La Paz
Welcome to La Paz, Bolivia’s seat of government and the highest administrative capital in the world! There will be an important group meeting at 6:00pm at the joining hotel - please look out at the hotel reception for a note from your leader with more details about this important meeting.  
 
Day 2: Copacabana
Today we will head to the beautiful town of Copacabana on the shores of Lake Titicaca, where we will have some time to freely explore. In Copacabana we will stay in a basic local hotel. 
 
Day 3: Isla Del Sol
Today we will take an included day trip to Isla del Sol in Lake Titicaca, one of the holiest sites in ancient Inca mythology and supposedly the birthplace of the Sun God Inti. We will take a 14km walk across the length of the island, taking in the incredible and serene scenery and soaking up the calm atmosphere of the island (this walk can be skipped by anybody who does not want to do it). In Isla del Sol we will stay in a basic local hotel. 
 
Day 4: Lake Titicaca / Puno
Today we will take a boat back to Copacabana, and then cross the border into Peru and head to the lakeside town of Puno. In Puno we will stay in a local hotel.  
 
Day 5: Cuzco
Today we will leave Puno and head through the highlands of Peru to the former Inca capital of Cuzco. We will have an included visit to the Inca site of Tipón en route. In Cuzco we will stay in a good colonial hotel. 
 
Day 6: Cuzco
The rest of today will be free to explore the wonderful city of Cuzco, discover its many historical gems, or to take part in number of optional activities near the city. There will be a further meeting this evening for our Community and Classic Inca Trails, where we will have a full detailed briefing from our local trekking guides about the next few days! 
 
Day 7: Sacred Valley / Inca Trail
These four days will be spent either trekking in the Andes, on our pioneering Wild Andes Trek, on the Classic Inca Trek or for those not wishing to hike, free time to explore and a guided tour of the Sacred Valley on our Train package. 
 
Option 1 - Wild Andes Trek: Leaving Cuzco early in the morning, we visit the ruined temples of Sacsayhuaman for a fascinating tour of the site. We then head on to Chinchero, a small Quechua-speaking village in the Sacred Valley. Here we will see a traditional weaving demonstration that has been unchanged for a thousand years, and explore their beautiful archaeological ruins. We will drive to a stunning viewpoint for a picnic lunch, and then visit the Quillarumiyoc temple (the Temple of the Moon). We will start our trek from here in the afternoon, heading by foot to Zurite where we have a picturesque stay in a colonial house. Tonight we will enjoy a traditional dinner and get a taste of the local village lifestyle. 
 
Option 2 - Classic Inca Trek: This morning we go for a guided tour of the Sacred Valley, followed by a visit to the market town of Pisac, where we will have lunch. We then head to Ollantaytambo, where we will explore this impressive archaeological site. Tonight we stay in a comfortable hotel. There is no trekking today. 
 
Option 3 - Train Package: You will leave Cuzco with your fellow passengers who will be trekking the Wild Andes Trek. You will visit the fortress of Sacsayhuaman, followed by a beautiful scenic drive over mountains and through valleys, via the ancient city of Pisac and on to the Sacred Valley of the Incas. After lunch you will head back to Cuzco where you will stay at our nice, centrally located hotel for a further 3 nights. These hotel nights will be booked for you by your Tour Leader.  
 
Day 8: Inca Trail
Option 1 - Wild Andes Trek: After a hearty breakfast we leave Zurite and head to wards Amaruwatana camp. The walk will take us through Qenteqentiyoc (the Hummingbird Temple), where we will visit and admire this archaeological Inca site. We will then follow the ancient path all the way to the top of our first pass at 4,400 metres, where we will have a dramatic view of both the Vilcabamba and Vilcanota mountain ranges. From here we start walking down on the way to our first camp in the Sambor Valley where we will spend the night camping. 
 
Option 2 - Classic Inca Trek: After breakfast, we catch a bus to the Railroad 82km marker, the start of the Classic Inca Trek, here we are joined by our crew of local porters and cooks. We will cross the bridge over the River Urubamba and following a trail along the left-hand shore of the river, we enjoy stunning views of the snow-capped Mount Veronica (5830m.) and the Inca archaeological remains at Llactapata. Continuing through lush farmland and woodlands, we gradually climb for approximately 5 hours to our first campsite at Wayllabamba (3000m./9840ft.) 
 
Option 3 - Train Package: Today is a free day for you to enjoy Cusco, with its museums, churches, incredible colonial architecture, beautiful restaurants and a vast array of shops, selling textiles and handicrafts. 
 
Day 9: Inca Trail
Option 1 - Wild Andes Trek: We have an early start this morning, trekking for approx. 2 hours to reach the top of our second pass at 4,700 metres. From here we have fantastic views of the rock formations below us, and if we're lucky we may spot Andean ibises, caracaras, eagles or foxes up here! After descending for approx. 2 hours, we arrive at a stunning highland valley with a glacial river named Kenqo Mayu (Zig-zag River) flowing down it - which makes an idyllic stop for lunch! After lunch we will continue trekking downhill following the ancient trail, which leads us to our campsite in the Ancascocha area. 
 
Option 2 - Classic Trek: This is the most challenging of the trek as we ascend a long steep path (approx 4 hrs) to reach the highest point of our trek, Warmiwañusca, or Dead Woman's Pass, at a height of 4,200 m (13,779 ft), before descending to the Pacaymayo Valley (3,650 m above sea level - 2 hrs downhill). Depending upon local conditions, you might camp here today, or may need to continue further up and down. We might cross the first and second passes on this day. From the second pass, Runkuracay (3,980 m above sea level - 90 min uphill) we can enjoy views of the snow-capped Cordillera Vilcabamba before descending to the ruins of Sayacmarca (2 hours downhill). From here it is only a few more minutes to the Chaquicocha campsite (3,620 m above sea level). 
 
Option 3 - Train Package: Today is a free day for you to enjoy Cuzco, with it's museums, churches, incredible colonial architecture, beautiful restaurants and a vast array of shops selling textiles and handicrafts. 
 
Day 10: Inca Trail
Option 1 - Wild Andes Trek: Today we will descend the narrow Silque Canyon, allowing us to observe the tall granite walls on its sides which are populated by a large variety of orchids and bromeliads, filling the environment with magnificent colours when they bloom. After crossing many little bridges we will reach the Camicancha area, where we stop at a magnificent volcanic viewpoint looking to wards the Snow-capped Mt. Veronica. From here, it is only a short trek to Chilca, where out trail ends. We'll be picked up by our vehicle and head to Ollantaytambo, taking a well-earned shower and rest at our hotel. In the afternoon we will have an included guided tour around the incredible archaeological site of Ollantaytambo and its world-famous Temple of the Sun.  
 
Option 2 - Classic Inca Trek: Today we continue over the third pass and soon reach the beautiful ruins of Phuyupatamarca, the 'Town above the Clouds' (3,850 m above sea level – 90 min uphill). Start descending real Inca Steps (2 hrs) to reach our final night's camp by the Wiñay Wayna, or 'Forever Young' ruins (2,750 m above sea level), with panoramic views of the valley below. 
 
Option 3 - Train Package: After being picked up from your hotel in the morning you will be driven to the fortress city of Ollantaytambo and our hotel for the night, the Tunupa Lodge. Here you will rejoin the Community Inca Trekkers and your tour leader who will be arriving from their trek this afternoon. 
 
Day 11: Machu Picchu / Cuzco
Option 1 - Wild Andes Trek: Today we will have an early start to catch the train to the small town of Aguas Calientes. From there, we will take a bus up the winding mountainside to the legendary ruined city of Machu Picchu - one of the world's most iconic sights! We have a guided tour with our expert local guide and plenty of time to freely explore this magical place. In the afternoon we will head back to Ollantaytambo and then on to Cuzco, where we return to our joining hotel at the end of a long but phenomenal day!  
 
Option 2 - Classic Trek: Today we wake early for a short final hike to Machu Picchu, we climb the steps to the Sun Gate to watch the ruins emerge from the mist below. As with the community trek our guide will show us the most important constructions as well as explain the history and the mythology of this magnificent place. There is some free time to explore the ruins further at your own pace or maybe if you haven't experienced enough steps and trekking, why not visit the Inca Bridge. Or you can just chill out and watch the hummingbirds or vizcachua. In the afternoon we head back down to Aguas Calientes and take the train back to Ollantaytambo and return to Cuzco for a well-deserved rest. 
 
Option 3 - Train Package: After an early breakfast and walk to the train station, your stunning 2 hour train ride to Aguas Calientes begins. The journey takes you through several different micro-climates, past Inca terraces, lookout posts, ancient river bank reinforcements and small towns. You will get a glimpse of different temples and the beautiful Mount Veronica (5,750m). Passing through 8 tunnels, the train journey finally comes to an end in the busy pueblo, Aguas Calientes. From here you take a local bus that winds up the mountainside for about 30 minutes until you arrive at the entrance to Machu Picchu (2,400m), the awe inspiring 'Lost City of the Incas'. The guide will take you around the immense, mystical ruins for about 2 to 2 ½ hours, explaining the rich history of the ancient site. Afterwards, you will have time to explore on your own before returning down the mountain to Aguas Calientes. In the afternoon you will catch a train from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo and a private transfer will take you back to your hotel in Cuzco. 
 
Day 12: Cuzco
Today is the end day for passengers finishing their trip in Cuzco. 
Map
All This Included
Journey through the Inca heartlands on this express Overland tour of Bolivia and Peru. Unlock the secrets of the mystic sights as you hike along historic Inca pathways, discover isolated islands dotting Lake Titicaca, ramble over the ruins of Machu Picchu and explore the streets of Cuzco. From the breathtaking altitude of La Paz to the once mighty Inca capital of Cuzco, discover the history and beauty of these two great nations on this unforgettable trip.
 
  • Transportation: Overland expedition vehicle, Private bus, Train
  • Isla del Sol boat trip
  • Uros Island boat trip on Lake Titicaca
  • Cuzco Visitor Ticket
  • Sillustani Ruins and Museum w/Guide
  • Alternative Inca Trail and Quechua Community trek
  • Tour of the Sacred Valley, Sacsayhuaman and Ollantaytambo
  • Machu Picchu guided tour
Highlights
  • Climb through the jumble of twisting streets in La Paz.
  • Discover the remote beauty of the Island of the Sun.
  • Explore the floating Uros reed islands.
  • Set sail on the waters of Lake Titicaca.
  • Discover the mystery of crumbling Machu Picchu.
  • Go hiking in the footsteps of the Incas.
  • Visit Cuzco, a delightful 'city in the clouds' of Peru.
Accommodations
Camping (with facilities) (3 nights)
Hotel (8 nights)
Notes
  • This trip is run by our experienced overland partner Dragoman.
  • Please note that this trip requires minimum numbers to depart, and may be cancelled up until 56 days prior to departure. 
  • You need to choose whether you wish to hike the Classic Inca Trail or the Quechua Community Trek at the time of booking. If you do not indicate a preference, the Quechua Community Trek will be confirmed automatically.
  • Classic Inca Trail permits are sold on a request basis only. Once deposit is paid and passport details provided, Intrepid will endeavour to secure a permit for you. If Classic Inca Trail permits are unavailable by the time you book, you will be booked on the Quechua Community Trek instead.
  • The Classic Inca Trail closes in February to allow cleaning and restoration works. If the trek portion of your trip starts in February you will be automatically booked to hike the Quechua Community Trek.
  • Please ask your Vacations To Go travel counselor for more information.
Terms and Conditions
For Intrepid Travel terms and conditions, please click here.

* The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines.