Peru and Chile - Incan Highlights and Machu Picchu (Itinerary 2)
10 days with Hurtigruten Rating:
DAY 1 UNESCO Site and Ancient History
Location : Lima, Peru
Lima and its surrounding area are steeped in history. The city of Lima is Peru's capital, established by the Spanish conquistadores in 1542. The Viceroyalty of Peru built significant churches, monasteries, and mansions in Lima. Today, the city's historic center is a UNESCO World Heritage site. Explore Lima on your own before spending the night in a hotel.
DAY 2 Stunning Ancient Craftsmanship
Location : Lima/Cusco
Start the day by transferring to your morning flight from Lima to Cusco. Enjoy lunch before experiencing the amazing Sacsayhuamán fortress. The name translates to "satisfied falcon”, in reference to the mythical bird that was said to have guarded the capital of the empire. Construction of the site lasted more than seven decades and demanded the labor of 20,000 men to set foundations, hew the stone, transport materials, and carve and set the stonework.
Like many Incan structures, the fortress was built entirely without mortar, yet the enormous stones fit so perfectly that a single blade of grass will not pass between them. The craftsmanship is a stunning example of the Inca’s sophisticated construction and architectural skills. In the afternoon, we continue to Tambo del Inka Resort in the Sacred Valley for dinner and an overnight stay.
DAY 3 Majestic Machu Picchu
Location : Ollantaytambo and Machu Picchu
After breakfast, you’re in for some unforgettable sights. First we visit Ollantaytambo, an Incan town that shares its name with the formidable stone fortress that hugs a massive cliff looming over the community. This fort was the valley’s main defence against the rival Antis and was the site of the Incas’ greatest victory against the Spanish during the wars of conquest.
Constructed of rose-colored granite, this huge structure was once a thriving complex of baths, temples and military barracks. Next, we head to the nearby train station and board the deluxe Hiram Bingham train to Machu Picchu. A savory brunch will be served as we enjoy spectacular views on the way to Machu Picchu.
At last, we arrive at spectacular Machu Picchu. The legendary hidden city overlooks the raging Urubamba River and was shielded from discovery for centuries by thick tangles of vines and trees. Now one of the great destinations in world travel, the city of Machu Picchu still hides the secret of its rise and fall, as the Incas left no written records behind. Explore the city's ruins, feel its pulse and visualize the lives of the priests, craftsmen, and servants who inhabited this incredible place.
Excavations at the site have revealed skeletons, artefacts and woollen clothing. The renowned precision of Incan stonework on display here is astounding. After spending an unforgettable day exploring the ruins, you can enjoy tea at Machu Picchu Sanctuary Lodge before we head back to Tambo del Inka Resort for another relaxing evening and overnight stay.
DAY 4 Center of the Incan Empire
Location : Cusco/Lima/Callao
After breakfast, we head back to Cusco, once the center of the Inca Empire. Visit the splendid baroque Cusco Cathedral, built in the mid-1500's on the foundations of an Incan palace. Many of the stones used in its construction were looted from the nearby Sacsayhuaman fortress.
We continue to Koricancha, to admire the lovely Dominican Convent of Santo Domingo that was built on the foundations of the Temple of the Sun, the most important temple in the Inca Empire. The curved, mortar-less masonry wall at the west end of the church is one of the greatest existing examples of Inca stonework. After another day of exploring, we will transfer you to the airport to fly to Lima, where MS Fram stands ready to continue our expedition at sea.
DAY 5 The Mysterious Nazca Lines
Location : Puerto General San Martin, Peru
Puerto General San Martin is the gateway to the famous and mysterious Nazca Lines and geoglyphs. These lines were etched into the ground between 500 B.C. and 500 A.D., and are considered among archaeology's greatest enigmas because of their quantity, nature, size and continuity. The geoglyphs are several kilometres long and illustrate living creatures, stylized plants and imaginary beings, as well as geometric figures. Join this excursion to truly experience these marvellous creations of the ancient world.
DAY 6-7 At your Leisure
Location : At sea
Days at sea mean you can join the Expedition Team for interesting lectures, learn the basics of expedition photography, and spend time out on deck enjoying the fresh salt air as you scout for wildlife. Of course, there’s also plenty time to chat with fellow explorers, or just find yourself a quiet corner to enjoy the serenity of a day at sea.
DAY 8 The Northern Pearl
Location : Antofagasta, Chile
Known as one of the oldest and prettiest cities in northern Chile, Antofagasta is nicknamed, “The Pearl of the North”. It is a city of remarkable contrasts, where you can experience the driest desert and the bluest sea.
Join one of our optional excursions to see La Portada Natural Monument, a peculiar rocky arch formation at sea, or visit one of the small fishing towns nearby.
You may also explore sunny, warm beaches, or the Antofagasta´s historic sites at your own pace.
DAY 9 Serenity at Sea
Location : At sea
Enjoy another peaceful day at sea as we make our way south to Valparaíso, and the Expedition Team continues their lecture program.
DAY 10 The “Jewel of the Pacific”
Location : Valparaíso, Chile
Our expedition ends in the wonderful, colorful and poetic city of Valparaíso. After disembarking MS Fram, take some time to stroll the UNESCO-listed Historic Quarter, or ride a funicular to one of the many hilltops for a citywide panorama.
All This Included
Sail the west coast of South America to explore fascinating archaeological sites and the mysteries of lost cultures. Discover Incan treasures like unforgettable Machu Picchu and marvel at the mysterious Nazca Lines. Finally, explore the ancient city of Antofagasta – the richest and most important city in northern Chile, described as the “Pearl of the North”.
Lima: To be determined
Sacred Valley: Hotel Tambo del Inka
Cruising: Category I cabin onboard ms Fram
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* 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.