South of Peru/ 15 days – 14 nights
Duration:15 days – 14 nights
Finish: Puerto Maldonado-Lima
Season recommended: All the year
Peru tour package to Lima, Paracas & Nazca, Arequipa & Colca Canyon, Puno & Lake Titicaca, Cusco & Machu Picchu and the Amazon
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This complete Peru travel package will take you to all the most important destinations in the country: Machu Picchu, Cusco, the Amazon rainforest, Lima, the Nazca Lines, the Colca Canyon, and Lake Titicaca. You will learn about the mysteries of the pre-Columbian civilizations, explore the vast array of flora and fauna in the jungle, watch the graceful condors soar across the canyons, and immerse yourself in the diverse culture of Peru.
Highlights of this amazing trip to Peru include World Wonder Machu Picchu, the masterpiece of the Inca Empire, but also stunning colonial Cusco and the lush Amazon rainforest. This 15-day tour will give you a taste of everything Peru has to offer, leaving you with a desire to return again soon.
Day 1 -Arrival to Lima & Lima Tour
You will be picked up at the airport by a Peru For Less representative and taken to your confirmed Lima hotel. After a short rest, you’ll meet your English-speaking expert guide for your exciting tour of Lima.
This Lima tour takes you to the main political and religious sites of the city. You’ll start in Lima’s historic center, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Here you will admire the Plaza Mayor (the central square), which is surrounded by 5 important buildings: the Government Palace, the Cathedral, the Archbishop´s Palace, the Municipal Palace, and the Palace of Lima. You’ll then travel a few blocks to the San Francisco Monastery, famous for its catacombs where over 250,000 bones rest. Your Lima tour will end with a picturesque panoramic view from Muralla Park.
You’ll have the evening to spend at your leisure. We recommend a stroll through the scenic Parque del Amor (Park of Love) above the cliff near Larcomar, a mall built into the jagged cliffs of Lima’s coastline. Check out our Lima Travel Guide for ideas on great restaurants or shopping in Lima.
Day 2- Arrival to Paracas & Nazca Lines Tour
After breakfast at your hotel you will be taken to the bus station for your trip to Paracas. You will travel approximately 3h30 aboard a comfortable first class bus. Upon arrival in Paracas, you will be taken to your confirmed Paracas hotel.
After you drop off your luggage in your hotel, you’ll head to the nearby Pisco airport to take off on your exciting tour of the Nazca Lines. Built between 500 BC and 500 AD, the Nazca Lines are a World Heritage Site and have been carefully studied for half a century. Yet, they continue to perplex researchers. Many scientists believe the lines had some astronomical function for the Nazca civilization, although other more colorful theories abound. During the flight, you will see famous glyphs such as the condor, the hummingbird, and the monkey. See our Nazca Travel Guide for more in-depth information on the Nazca Lines.
After you touch back down to earth, you’ll be taken back to your Paracas hotel, where you can relax and ponder the mysterious Nazca Lines are your leisure as you enjoy a beautiful sunset over the Paracas Bay.
Note: Flights from Pisco to Nazca require a minimum of two passengers. Please contact your travel advisor for single passenger inquiries.
Day 3- Ballestas Islands Tour & Return to Lima
Enjoy breakfast at your hotel before departing on an adventurous boat trip to the Ballestas Islands. Here you can spot sea lions, seals, penguins, guano birds, and turtles (rarely found at this latitude). The boat trip lasts approximately 2 hours.
On the way to the islands, you will also get the opportunity to spot the Candelabra, a 165-foot (50-meter) long sketching in the rock, which experts believe is connected to the Nazca Lines. Debate with your companions whether the Candelabra formation represents a cactus— a symbol of power in the ancient Chavin culture—or perhaps the Southern Cross constellation.
After your boating excursion, you will be transferred to the bus station to return to Lima for the night. After you check in to your hotel, you will have the evening in Lima to enjoy at your leisure.
Day 4-Arrival to Arequipa & Arequipa Tour
After breakfast, you’ll take a morning flight to Arequipa, often called the White City due to its white buildings constructed out of sillar, a white volcanic lava rock.
Upon arrival to the city, you will be greeted at the airport by one of our representatives who will take you to your confirmed Arequipa hotel. Here you will be able to relax and adjust to the altitude before your afternoon city tour.
Meet your guide at your hotel for your Arequipa tour which will begin with a visit to the city’s beautiful main square. You’ll visit the town hall and the neo-classical Cathedral. You’ll then tour some famous mansions, many of which are intricately decorated with Baroque façades. You will also have the opportunity to stop at the bustling local market to mingle with locals as they do their daily shopping.
Though your tour ends at the market, we highly recommend a visit to the Santa Catalina Monastery during your free time. Alternatively, simply enjoy your beautiful surroundings and try the delicious Arequipeña cuisine.
Day 5-Colca Canyon Tour
Start the day with a filling breakfast at your Arequipa hotel before setting off on a scenic drive to the Colca Canyon, by way of Chivay. This ride takes you through spectacular highland landscapes and is one of the highlights of your journey to the canyon. As the road climbs up to Reserva Nacional de Salinas y Aguada Blanca, keep your eyes open for wild vicuñas and visachas, small rodents similar to rabbits.
As you descend from the Patapampa, the highest pass on this journey, you’ll begin to see pre-Inca agricultural terraces as you get close to the town of Chivay.
You’ll be taken to your Colca Canyon hotel and have the afternoon to relax amidst the pastoral beauty or soak in the nearby hot springs.
Day 6 -Colca Canyon Tour & Arrival to Puno
Wake up at dawn to visit the Mirador Cruz del Condor, one of the best places to spot soaring Andean condors— one of the largest flying birds in the world. The road to this viewpoint takes you past picturesque villages and pre-Inca ruins, with the Ampato and Hualca glaciers looming in the distance. On clear days, you may even see smoke billowing from the active volcano Sabancaya.
You’ll reach Cruz del Condor in the early morning, when the birds are most active. Here you can stand at the viewpoint and gaze into the canyon’s depths, nearly 4,000 feet below.
You’ll then head to Chivay, gateway town to the canyon where you can enjoy lunch and browse the local market before continuing on by road to Puno, where you will be taken to your Puno hotel and have the evening free to spend at your leisure. Check out our Puno Travel Guide for suggestions on where to eat and what to do in Puno.
Day 7 -Lake Titicaca Tour
During your full-day Lake Titicaca tour you will visit two to three of the Islands of Uros. Uros is composed of about 32 islands constructed of many layers of totora reeds – the number changes as they are manmade and after a period of time are abandoned. Each island is inhabited by islanders who either work in Puno (generally those who live on the islands close to the shore), live in relative isolation (those far from the shoreline), or who use tourism as their main source of income and allow tourists to visit during the day or spend the night.
While visiting the islands, you will be given the chance to learn about the local customs, visit the reed homes, and ride on reed boats. Generally the families inhabiting the island will have a small display of traditional local handicrafts available for sale as well.
Following this exciting tour, you will be led to the Island of Taquile, located about 30 miles from Puno and abundant with numerous pre-Inca and Inca ruins.
The local islanders still maintain many ancient traditions which are reflected in their time-honored clothing and beautiful handicrafts. You will be led around the island to all of the most important sites such as the museum of traditional costumes and the ruins at the highest point of the island where you can catch an incredible sunset.
After the tour, you will return to Puno where you can enjoy a relaxing evening, sampling the delicious Peruvian gastronomy in the many restaurants.
Day 8 -Arrival to Cusco
After breakfast at your Puno hotel, you will be transferred to the airport for your flight to Cusco. You will be picked up at the Cusco airport upon arrival and taken to your confirmed Cusco hotel, where you are advised to rest to acclimatize to the altitude.
You will have the evening to enjoy the Cusco nightlife at your leisure.
Day 9 -Cusco Tour
Enjoy a guided tour of Cusco that takes you to visit some of the many amazing archaeological sites and wonders in and around the city. You will see the Cathedral (which is located on the Plaza de Armas – or the main square), as well as the ruins of Sacsayhuaman, Q’enko, Puka Pukara and Tambomachay.
You will return to your hotel in the late afternoon to enjoy a relaxing evening. Check out our Cusco Travel Guide for suggestions of great Cusco restaurants.
Day10-Sacred Valley Tour
Explore the beautiful Peruvian countryside during a full-day tour of the magical Sacred Valley. First you will visit the town of Pisac, which is known for its lively market. Here you will have the opportunity to browse the beautiful Andean handicrafts, garments, and jewelry displayed for sale.
Next you will visit the impressive ruins of Ollantaytambo. Ollantaytambo is a tiny Sacred Valley village, and one of the most picturesque. If you climb to the top of its magnificent ancient ruins, you will be rewarded with an incredible view. Originally the royal estate of Emperor Pachacuti during the Inca Empire, it later served as a stronghold for Manco Inca Yupanqui in the Incas’ final rebellion against the Spanish.
In the evening, you will return to your comfortable Cusco hotel.
Day 11: Machu Picchu Tour
After breakfast at your Cusco hotel you will take a train to the hidden temple of the Incas: Machu Picchu. The train ride is an attraction in itself, as much of the path winds along the river and mountain face, offering passengers dramatic views of the Andes as the train passes through abundant cloud forests.
Upon arrival in Aguas Calientes, the town near Machu Picchu, you will head to the bus station for a 20-minute ride up to the secluded citadel, where you will enjoy a fascinating tour of the ruins.
After your tour, you have the option to explore more of the site solo and capture some final photos.
In the afternoon, you will take a comfortable train back to Cusco. You also have the option to stay an extra night in Aguas Calientes, the town at the foot of Machu Picchu.
Check out our Machu Picchu Travel Guide for more information on what to see and do, as well as Machu Picchu restaurants that we recommend for tasty dining.
Day 12: Arrival to Puerto Maldonado
Meet you transfer to the airport for an early flight to Puerto Maldonado. Upon arrival you will be transferred by boat to your jungle lodge. It is located in the territory of the Ese’eja native community and is built with the same materials and architectural techniques as those used by the native communities throughout the Amazon. As you leave the traces of Puerto Maldonado behind, sailing in a dugout canoe on the Tambopata River, the tranquility of the rainforest will absorb you.
That evening you will enjoy a delicious dinner before tucking in early to get ready for your jungle tour at the break of dawn.
Day 13: Amazon Tour
At dawn you will venture out on a short hike to the parrot clay lick a few minutes down-river from the lodge to witness the jungle come to life. Later, after breakfast, you will have time to try to spot giant river otters, turtles, hoatzin, and wading birds as you explore the surrounding jungle.
In the afternoon you will be taken on a guided walk through the forest where your Amazon expert guide will have the opportunity to point out hiding animals and indigenous plants. After dinner, enthusiasts can go on a night walk to enjoy the nocturnal creatures that come to life or you can simply relax to the sounds of the jungle.
Day 14:Amazon Tour
At dawn you can go for another optional visit to the clay lick. After breakfast, you will go for a hike accompanied by an Ese’eja native who will explain how the forest is used in their everyday life: for food, medicine, construction materials, etc. You will enjoy a delicious local meal for lunch before heading off in the afternoon for another hike that will take you down a trail that crosses a floodplain and a bamboo forest. This trail will offer yet a different variety of flora and fauna for you to enjoy.
You will return before dark to the jungle lodge for your last evening in the Peruvian rainforest.
Day 15: Departure from Puerto Maldonado
After an early breakfast at the lodge you will be transferred to Puerto Maldonado for your journey home or on to your next destination. Browse our full range of Peru travel destinations and continue your exiting trip to Peru!
Prices may vary according to the season, availability, and client preferences. Certain transport costs may not be included. Please contact one of our expert travel advisors ( Gilf Laurente )for more information.
2 nights in Lima, 1 night in Paracas, 1 night in Arequipa, 1 night in the Colca Canyon, 2 nights in Puno, 4 nights in Cusco, 3 nights in the Amazon in Peru hotels based on US standards
All tours stated in the itinerary with English-speaking guides
All transfers and entrance fees
All meals in Amazon lodge
Transportation from Arequipa to Puno
Flight over Nazca Lines