We start this Andean Overland adventure in the city of peace, La Paz, Bolivia. From here on we travel to Titicaca Lake, the biggest lake in South-America which we can admire from both the Bolivian and Peruvian side. Titicaca is famous for its floating islands, islands where people actually live on! The trip continues to Cusco were we enjoy the beauty and great atmosphere of the city. Moreover we get to know its amazing surroundings where we can find the Sacred Valley of the Inka´s and the highest highlight of Peru: Machu Picchu, the recently discovered remains of an Inka city on top of a mountain overlooking the whole forest. After having seen this world wonder it´s time to head back to Cusco and wish you a safe trip back home.
Arrival La Paz
This is the first day of our Andean adventure! We arrive in La Paz. If La Paz is where your Andes Overland adventure starts you can take a transfer or a cab from the airport to the hotel in town. Here we meet with the rest of the group and the guide. This beautiful city is located at an altitude of 4000 meters. It is possible you are feeling tired and out of breath due to the altitude, so take your time to acclimatize before the trip starts.
We wake up in this beautiful city which we haven´t really got to know yet. Time to go see La Paz! During the optional city tour we can learn all about the architecture and the culture of La Paz.Other options to enjoy the city and it´s surroundings are the excursion to the Tiwanaku Ruins and the mountain bike excursion across the extremely dangerous Death road.
La Paz - Isla Del Sol
Today we leave Bolivia’s capital to take the bus to Copacabana. This lovely town is located on the shores of the sacred Titicaca Lake. In the lake the Island called Isla Del Sol is situated, which is the sacred Inca Island. This Island is where we are heading to, but of course, this time by boat! The island may appear a warm and tropical place for its name, but don’t be fooled. We are at a height of 3800m so do bring your sun cream, but don´t forget a warm sweater. Once we get on the island we are going to hike from the south part to the north where our accommodation is located. Here we spend the rest of the day.
Isla del Sol - Copacabana
We wake up on the island of Isla del Sol! After breakfast you have time to discover all that Isla del Sol has to offer! We recommend to go for a nice walk to explore the surroundings or to get in contact with the local community! After lunch we hop on a boat back to Copacabana where we spend the night!
Copacabana - Puno (Peru)
Today we travel to the neighbouring country, Peru! Right after breakfast we take the bus to the Peruvian border. Here we have to say goodbye to our Bolivian guide and leave him behind. Fortunately we can welcome our new Peruvian one with whom we continue our adventure. Once we have crossed the border we travel on to Puno, another village in another country but on the shores of the same lake, el Lago Titicaca.
Today you can choose what you would like to do. You can take a free day, discover Puno, book a tour, buy souvenirs, or just take some rest. The other option is to go with us on our optional tour to the Uros Floating Islands, the islands where people are actually still living on. For this tour our guide picks us up from our hotel and drops us off at the port. The tour takes half a day, visiting the floating Islands of Uros and the Llachon Community, or all day, including a visit to Taquile Island.
Puno - Cusco / Day 7
The most popular city of Peru is our destination for today. We are going to Cusco! Once the epicenter of the Inca Empire, hidden in the heart of the mysterious Sacred Valley, Cusco offers a magical combination of ancient religious sanctity and colonial splendor. Unquestionably the archaeological capital of the Americas and the oldest inhabited city on the continent, Qosqo (Cusco in Quechua) has been declared the historical capital of Peru. This town is so shrouded in mystery that it is impossible to separate the facts of its history from fiction. The Inca legends of Cusco are proudly remembered by the Quechua-speaking descendants of the Incas who still live amidst the original stonework that was laid down in 1100 AD. The more recent Spanish colonial influence manifests itself in ornate cathedrals, such as La Compañia, and mansions piled with priceless treasures. The trip to Cusco provides us with amazing views and a delicious lunch moreover along the way we can stop to behold the ruins that are worthwhile visiting.
Today we are in Cusco where we offer a variety of options on how to spend your day(s). We included a city tour by foot to learn about the architecture and history of Cusco. Another option is to book the two or four day hiking trek through the Andes. There are two different treks that leave from Cusco and end at Machu Picchu: the Inka Trail and the Lares Trek. Of course, our program continuous as well so you don´t have to book one of the trails! In the end we all visit the Machu Picchu on the same day and return back to Cusco with the whole group.
Cusco - Sacred Valley
Close to Cusco is the famous Sacred Valley of the Incas located. Early in the morning we are heading in this direction. When we arrive in the valley we first visit the Pisac Indian Market which, attracts thousands of visitors and people from remote communities dressed in their colorful traditional attire. After having walked around on the market we have lunch. In the afternoon we go see the Ollantaytambo Ruins, named after the chief Ollanta, who was famous for courting an Inca Princess daughter of Pachacutec. One of its best preserved areas known as Hanan Hucayapata is located north of the main square and contains 15 states built with elegantly crafted stone walks. In a small village in the Sacred Valley, called Urubamba, we spend the night.
Sacred Valley - Pueblo Machu Picchu
Today we take the expedition train to Pueblo Machu Picchu. Here we can enjoy the pleasant hot springs of Mandor and get some rest and to prepare yourself for the big day! Tonight we sleep in Pueblo Machu Picchu which gives us the great advantage of being able to enter the Machu Picchu early in the morning as one of the first tourists.
Machu Picchu - Cusco
This is a special day. We are going to visit the Machu Picchu. Many people come to Peru just to visit the Machu Picchu since it was nominated as one of the seven world wonders. Today we are the lucky ones to see this wonder with our own eyes. We can do so by walking the crazy amount of stairs or we go by bus. It´s up to you! The ruins were discovered in 1911 by the explorer Hiram Bingham. This citadel is considered to be one of the most extraordinary examples of architecture landscapes in the world. Located in an enclave on the saddle of a mountain, overlooking the deep canyon of the Urubamba River, in an area of lush tropical forest, this site served as a place of worship, a site for star-gazing and a private hacienda of the family of the Inca Pachacutec. Machu Picchu consists of two main areas: one agricultural, formed mainly by mountains and food stores, and the other urban, which is seen as a sacred zone with its temples, squares and royal tombs. The stairways and canals carved out of stone are recurrent throughout this remarkable archaeological wonder. An English speaking guide shows and explains us everything there is to know. Today we meet again with those who did a trek. At the end of the day we return back to Cusco.
It is time to say goodbye to Cusco and for some of us even to Peru. Today we take our plane back home or to our next destination, the beautiful city of Arequipa where our adventure continues..