Overview

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Hiking and HomestayPeru

This Peru hiking trip truly has it all. Experience the real lives of Andean subsistence farmers, hiking along tracks made and used by them and their animals by day, and staying in their homes at night. Help them in their fields and learn about the ancient textiles they still weave and wear. Plus explore the gorgeous Sacred Valley from end to end, and of course Machu Picchu.

Start:

Cusco, Peru

End:

Cusco, Peru

Maximum group size:

12 Guests

Duration:

3 8 days

Price:

US$ 2,175

Includes:

wMachu Picchu oCulture & Food zOutdoors FHike

Spectacular, mysterious Moray

Spectacular, mysterious Moray

Irene and Manuela the llama are the alpha females at Huchuy Qosqo

Irene and Manuela the llama are the alpha females at Huchuy Qosqo

Freddy's delicious pachamanca is part of the pleasure of staying at Amaru

Freddy's delicious pachamanca is part of the pleasure of staying at Amaru

Peruvian village kitchen

Peruvian village kitchen

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The trip in detail

Welcome to Cusco, capital of the Inca Empire and one of the most beautiful cities on Earth! We’ll meet you at 1pm for a traditional Peruvian meal at a local favourite restaurant. In the afternoon your guide will lead a relaxed walking tour around Cusco’s stunning historic centre – it’s important to take it easy if you’ve arrived from sea level today, as you need to acclimatise to Cusco’s 3,400m (11,200 feet) altitude before we get underway on our hiking trip tomorrow.

Meals: Lunch and dinner included

Accommodation: Comfortable hotel in Cusco

Today we head to Huchuy Qosqo (Little Cusco). After an hour’s drive to Patabamba, we’ll start the 10km (6 miles; 4-6 hours walking time) hike which takes us through farmland and rugged mountain scenery, with stunning views of the Sacred Valley below, to the community and ruin of Huchuy Qosqo.

Here a warm welcome, a hot dinner and a comfortable bed await us at Irene and her family’s house just above the ruin.

Meals: All meals included

Accommodation: Irene’s place, Huchuy Qosqo

Walking: 10km (6 miles)

Minimum Altitude: 3,400m (10,000ft)

Maximum Altitude: 4,150m (13,800ft)

Today’s hike to Huchuy Qosqo and out to Lamay is all downhill. A short walk brings us to Huchuy Qosqo, a fascinating, little-visited site with sweeping views of the stunning Sacred Valley. After exploring the site we’ll walk down the hill and out to the main Sacred Valley road at Lamay (5km or 3 miles; two hours walking time).

After a slap-up lunch near Urubamba, and a little time to explore the charming town of Ollantaytambo, we’ll take the afternoon train to Aguas Calientes.

Meals: All meals included

Accommodation: Comfortable hotel in Aguas Calientes

Walking: 5km (3 miles)

Minimum Altitude: 2,430m (7,970ft)

Maximum Altitude: 3,400m (10,000ft)

An early start rewards us with sunrise at Machu Picchu – a peak moment for anyone. A spectacular stone city surrounded by incredibly steep, incredibly green mountains, Machu Picchu needs no introduction and is deservedly one of the new Seven Wonders of the World. Your trip leader will take you on a guided tour – a necessary start to orient you in this massive site – then you’ll have plenty of time to explore the site and some of the surrounding peaks on your own before we catch the train to Ollantaytambo for the night.

Meals: All meals included

Accommodation: Cosy, family-run hotel in Ollantaytambo

Today starts with Chinchero, a quiet little town best known for its outdoor weaving studios, terraced Inca ruin, and intricately-frescoed colonial church. Next is Moray – three massive Inca amphitheatres of incredible engineering precision and stern, magnificent beauty.

After lunch, an easy stroll (or ride in the bus if you prefer) through rolling farmland and views of the high Andes brings us to Salineras – a surreal and beautiful patchwork of pools and paths that still produces salt using Inca technology.

Meals: All meals included

Accommodation: Cosy, family-run hotel in Ollantaytambo

We’ll spend this very special day with families who lead a life that has barely changed in hundreds of years: subsistence farming in the village of Amaru. In the morning we’ll help the farmers in the fields, assisting them with whatever tasks they’re doing on the day, which depends on the time of the year and could be anything from herding pigs to ploughing a field to helping with the harvest.

In the afternoon, the women of Amaru will show us how they make the traditional textiles they wear. We’ll have the opportunity to participate in every stage of the process, from picking plants to make dyes, to weaving on a loom!

Meals: All meals included

Accommodation: Homestay in Amaru

This morning you’ll experience views very few tourists have seen on a unique, hiking approach along the ridgeline from Amaru to the incredible, terraced Inca fortress of Pisac. After exploring the huge, imposing site, we’ll hike down to the town of Pisac and have time to explore its famous handicraft – the biggest and best in the region and the perfect place to shop for last-minute souvenirs of your hiking trip to Peru!

In the afternoon we’ll head back to Cusco and enjoy one last, gourmet dinner together.

Meals: All meals included

Accommodation: Comfortable hotel in Cusco

You can book your flight out for any time you like today. If you’re staying on in Peru, we’re delighted to help out with suggestions and assistance for the rest of your time here.

Meals: Breakfast included

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How much does this trip cost?

US $

2,175

pp.


in a group of four to 12 people


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WHAT'S INCLUDED

  • All accommodation (based on twin share. Single Supplement available for US$120. Please note single rooms may not be possible in some homestays)
  • All ground transport (private vehicle and train)
  • All activities specified in itinerary
  • Dedicated Aspiring Adventures hiking and cultural guide
  • Entrance to all attractions specified in itinerary
  • Extra permit to climb Huayna Picchu at Machu Picchu (if available at time of booking)
  • All meals (6 breakfasts, 7 lunches, 7 dinners)
  • Drinking water with meals

WHAT'S NOT INCLUDED

  • Tip for your guide, driver and horse wranglers

Accommodations

Accommodations on our Peru Hiking and Homestay trips are our favourites in each place. In Cusco and Ollantaytambo we stay in characterful, quirky hotels of three-star standard. In Aguas Calientes we stay in clean, comfortable, family-run hotels. In Huchuy Qosqo and Amaru we stay in the guesthouses of local friends. Here, conditions are basic and hygiene may not be what you are used to at home, but any slight discomfort you experience will be well compensated for by the warm welcome you receive and the insight you gain into a very different way of life.


Aldo, Aspiring Adventures guide, says:

It's good to stay with friends along the way in this tour and catch up with them. Irene loves sharing her life with our guests, and I love Freddy's cooking!

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