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Explore Ecuador & Peru

Experience some of the best South America has to offer on this 16-day journey that brings together the awe-inspiring landscapes of Ecuador and the vivid cultures of Peru. Stroll the Amazon rainforest beneath its living, orchestral canopy during two days at our lodge; retrace the paths of the Incas at iconic Machu Picchu; and feel at home among the people of the Sacred Valley. Take an adventure for the body and soul.

Latin America

Duration: 16 Days Guaranteed Departure: Yes
For lovers of: Parks & Nature Reserves, Local Culture & Cuisine, History, Wildlife Physical rating: 2 - Light
Accommodation standard:   Moderate% Traveller Tour Rating: 0%  
Your Guide: English speaking Tour code: 155225
Starts: Quito, Ecuador Finishes: Lima, Peru
You will visit
  • Quito
  • Lima

Itinerary

01

Day 1: Quito

Arrive at any time. Arrival transfer included.

Included Activities:
Arrival Day and Welcome Meeting

Transport:
Private Vehicle

02

Day 2: Quito/Otavalo (1B, 1L)

Spend a night in the Otavalo area and visit its world famous handicrafts market, the largest in South America. Villagers from the surrounding countryside come here every week to sell handmade goods as well as livestock, fruits, and vegetables.

One of the most obvious signs of the Otavaleños' cultural integrity is their traditional dress. This is not just worn for the tourists at the Saturday market, but is worn throughout their daily life.

Otavalo is famous both for its friendly people and its Saturday animal market. The market dates back to pre-Inca times when jungle products were transported from the eastern lowlands and traded for highland goods. Today's market has two different functions: the local market for buying and selling animals, food, and other essentials, and the crafts market for the tourists and other interested people.


Included Activities:
San Clemente Community Visit
Otavalo Handicrafts Market Visit

Transport:
Private Vehicle (2.50-4.00 hours)

03

Day 3: Otavalo/Papallacta (1B)

Visit the home and studio of Don Miguel, and learn how the Indigenous people of the Otavalo region have used the backstrap loom to create their woven goods. Continue to the Papallacta Hot Springs Resort for onsite hot springs, optional spa treatments, and hiking excursions. There is plenty of time to soak, relax, and enjoy the mountain views.

Included Activities:
Otavalo Weaving Lesson
Papallacta Hot Springs Visit

Transport:
Private Vehicle (2.00-3.00 hours)

04

Day 4: Papallacta/Baños (1B)

Baños is one of the most popular spots in the country. Many Ecuadorian families vacation here. One look at this delightfully green mountain town and you will know why. Baños means “baths” and this is precisely what the town is famous for. Some are thermal springs from the base of Tungurahua Volcano, which means “little hell” in Quichua. Other baths have melt water running into them from Tungurahua's glaciated flanks. Locals swear that the baths are good for your health; it's definitely worth rising early to watch the dawn creep over the mountains from a hot spring vantage point.

Included Activities:
Papallacta Hot Springs Visit
Visit the Omaere Ethnobotanical Park

Transport:
Private Vehicle (3.00-4.00 hours)

05

Day 5: Baños (1B)

The town is the perfect setting for outdoor pursuits. Activities include horseback riding, canyoning, hiking, mountain biking, climbing, and rafting on the River Patate.

06

Day 6: Baños/Yasuni National Park (1B, 1L, 1D)

Transfer to the port to board a motorized canoe to go to La Selva's main dock. Continue on a short 15-min jungle walk leading to a creek. Enjoy a paddle by canoe across “Garzacocha” (the heron´s lagoon) in order to reach the lodge area. Upon arrival at the lodge, enjoy a welcome drink and get an introductory briefing. Take part in a short activity to be introduced to the rainforest.

Additional Notes:
All activities in the Amazon depend on weather and natural conditions. Year-round temperature average is 82°F (28°C), however nights can be cooler. Since Ecuador is located right on the equator, the country does not experience extreme weather changes, and the weather is surprisingly comfortable all year around. Please be prepared for rain.

Electricity is available in the bar, dining areas, reception areas and rooms (110V) to recharge batteries. We suggest that guests bring a flashlight or headlamp. The plugs for recharging batteries have three holes, two plainprongs and one circle prong just as most American plugs. However, we recommend that you bring a transformer of two plain prongs.


Included Activities:
La Selva Lodge Excursions

Transport:
Private Vehicle (6.00-7.00 hours)
Motorized canoe (1.50-2.00 hours)

07

Day 7: Yasuni National Park (1B, 1L, 1D)

See the canopy of the rainforest from a tower, 43m (141 ft) in height, and choose from dozens of walks of varying lengths and difficulties. Several of these routes can only be accessed by canoe. In the morning, wake up early for some bird watching and as night falls go out on a boat to view caimans. Learn about the environment and wildlife from the naturalist guide, who accompanies the group to ensure you get the most out of the excursions. The opportunities for birding, botany, hiking, herpetology, canoeing, photography, entomology, fishing, relaxing, and swimming at La Selva Lodge are boundless.

Not interested in hiking or canoeing? Feel free to relax at the lodge.

Additional Notes:
Photography: A long lens, at least a zoom capable of 200 mm is recommended. Digital camera users need only beware (as SLR users) that moisture can fog their lenses rapidly. Silica gel in the camera carrying case should do the job and remember to put your camera back in the case when not using it. Bring plastic zip-lock bags for protecting your gear.

Included Activities:
La Selva Lodge Excursions

08

Day 8: Yasuni National Park/Quito (1B)

Travel by boat back to Coca and catch a flight to Quito.

Transport:
Motorized canoe (2.50 hour(s))
Plane (0.75-1.00 hours)

09

Day 9: Quito/Lima (1B)

Catch a flight to Peru and transfer to the Lima hotel.

10

Day 10: Lima/Urubamba (1B, 1L)

Board an early flight to Cusco then on to the Sacred Valley to visit the Ccaccaccollo community and Planeterra-sponsored Women's Weaving Co-op. Explore the Pisac ruins and visit the G Adventures-supported Sacred Valley Community Restaurant in Huchuy Qosqo.

Additional Notes:
There are some very early morning starts on this trip to make the best use of our time and see as much as we can of Peru in a week.

Included Activities:
Ccaccaccollo Community and Planeterra-Sponsored Women's Weaving Co-op visit
Pisac Ruins Guided Tour
Parwa Community Restaurant the Sacred Valley

Transport:
Plane (1.50-2.00 hours, 572km)
Times includes all stops and visits enroute through the Sacred Valley.
Private Vehicle (6.00-8.00 hours)

11

Day 11: Urubamba (1B, 1D)

Explore the pre-Inca salt pans of Las Salineras and tour the Ollantaytambo and Moray ruins. Visit a small community who specialize in ceramic- and adobe-making. Meet local artists and enjoy a demonstration of these traditional arts. Enjoy a traditional pachamanca-style meal of local specialities.

Included Activities:
Moray Ruins Guided Tour
Las Salineras Pre-Incan Salt Pans Guided Tour
Ollantaytambo Ruins Guided Tour
Local Adobe and Ceramic Experience
Traditional Pachamanca Dinner

Transport:
Times includes all stops and visits enroute through the Sacred Valley.
Private Vehicle (7.00-8.00 hours)

12

Day 12: Urubamba/Aguas Calientes (1B)

For serious archaeology buffs, there is time for an optional independent visit to Machu Picchu before the guided tour the following morning.

Additional Notes:
Please bear in mind that the town has several amenities, but is also geographically remote meaning services are sometimes more basic than one would assume. As the only option for travellers visiting Machu Picchu, the development of infrastructure has happened quite quickly, much without proper planning, and the focus on providing quality service may not be up to the standards experienced in other parts of the country.

Those who have chosen the option in advance to hike the "1-day Inca Trail" will disembark the train at km 104 to begin the trek. The trail rises steeply up into the mountains and will take hikers past the archaeological sites of Wiñay Wayna and Inti Pata, where the local guide will provide insights into the fascinating culture of the Incas en route to the trek's culmination at the Sun Gate. Enjoy a packed lunch along the way and reach the Sun Gate in the late afternoon with a chance for a preliminary exploration of Machu Picchu before the guided tour on Day 5. Transfer by bus from Machu Picchu to Aguas Calientes to rejoin the group and spend the night in a hotel. If time permits, take an optional visit to the nearby hot springs to soak your sore muscles.
1-day Inca Trail option:
Approximate Distance: 7km
Estimated hiking Time: 5-6 hours

Transport:
Private Vehicle (1.00-2.00 hours)
Train (1.50-2.00 hours)

13

Day 13: Aguas Calientes/Cusco (1B)

Enjoy a guided tour of the Machu Picchu ruins. Free time to explore on your own or take an optional visit to the Inca Bridge before returning to Cusco by train.

Included Activities:
Machu Picchu Guided Tour

Transport:
Local bus (0.50 hour(s))
Train (1.50-2.00 hours)
Private Vehicle (1.00-2.00 hours)

14

Day 14: Cusco (1B)

Explore historic Cusco with options to visit museums or go whitewater rafting, horseback riding or mountain biking. This evening, look to the night sky for a different view at the Cusco Planetarium. Enjoy a presentation on the southern sky, contemporary astronomy, and the ancient Inca relationship with the cosmos. Check out the on-site museum and use the telescopes to admire the stars.

Additional Notes:
Please note that if you booked the Peru Culinary Bundle, on day 6 you will be picked up from your hotel at approx 12:30 and taken to a local market and restaurant to prepare and enjoy a traditional Peruvian meal. You will return back to your hotel around 16:00.

Included Activities:
Cusco Planetarium

15

Day 15: Cusco/Lima (1B)

Fly back to Lima and spend an afternoon in Peru's bustling capital.

Transport:
Plane (1.50-2.00 hours, 572km)

16

Day 16: Lima (1B)

Depart at any time.

Additional Notes:
Your CEO can help arrange an optional transfer to the airport.

Included Activities:
Departure Day

Inclusions:
    Activities
    • Arrival transfer
    • Lunch at San Clemente
    • Overnight in a historical hacienda
    • Otavalo weaving lesson and studio visit
    • Relax at Papallacta hot springs
    • Two nights at an Amazon lodge with jungle walks and canoe excursions
    • Visit the Omaere Ethnobotanical Park
    • Two-day Sacred Valley tour including Ollantaytambo, Moray, and Pisac ruins, and pre-Incan salt pans
    • Visit the Women's Weaving Co-op
    • Lunch at Sacred Valley Community Restaurant
    • Adobe- and ceramic-making demonstration
    • Traditional pachamanca-style lunch
    • Scenic train ride and guided tour of Machu Picchu
    • Visit the Cusco Planetarium
    • Internal flights
    • Interesting articles, helpful tips, and photography advice from National Geographic before you depart
    • All transport between destinations and to/from included activities
    Accommodation
    • Hotels (11 nts), historic hacienda (1 nt), jungle lodge (2 nts), hot springs resort (1 nt)
    Meals Included
    • 15 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 3 dinners
    Transport
    • Private van/bus, boat, plane, train, walking
    Group Leader
    • Chief Experience Officer (CEO) throughout, local guides
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Tour Highlights:
  • Visit the Otavalo Weaving studio and get a lesson from Miguel Andrango
  • Explore the Cusco Planetarium
  • Learn about the relationship between cultures and the plants around them at the Omaere Ethnobotanical Park
  • Enjoy an adobe and ceramic making demonstration in a small community
  • Traverse the Amazon jungle with a local naturalist guide