About Our Group Tours
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On this tour, you’ll be accompanied from start to finish by one of our exceptional Journey Latin America tour leaders
. From the moment you land in Latin America until the day the tour ends they will deal with all the practicalities, expertly adapting to the circumstances and individual needs of the group. Rather than different guides in different cities, your leader will get to know the group and keep you informed and entertained as you go.
2 flights (1 hour each), 2 road journeys (longest 6 hours, including stops), 3 rail journeys (10, 2 and 3.5 hours).
On this tour we use first class and upper mid-range hotels.
Examples of hotels include:
• Lima: Casa Andina Select Miraflores
• Arequipa: Costa del Sol Wyndham (formally the Libertador)
• Colca Canyon: Colca Lodge
• Puno: Casa Andina Premium
• Cusco: Casa Andina Premium
• Sacred Valley: Pakaritampu
• Machu Picchu: Inkaterra Machu Picchu
On very rare occasions these hotels can change, however please speak to one of our consultants who can provide full details for each departure if you have any doubts. Address and contact details will be sent out with your final documents.
Breakfast daily, lunch days 6, 8 and 10; dinner day 4 & 11, full-board day 5.
• Lima: walking tour
• Colca Canyon: condor spotting
• Lake Titicaca: boat excursion to the Uros Islands
• full day luxury train from Puno to Cusco
• Cusco: city tour and nearby Inca ruins
• Sacred Valley: tour of the Sacred Valley of the Incas
• Machu Picchu: guided tour of the ruins
Summary of nights
14 days, 13 nights: Lima 1; Arequipa 2; Colca Canyon 2; Puno 2; Cusco 2; Sacred Valley 1; Machu Picchu 1; Cusco 2.
Included in the journey price
• Services of Journey Latin America tour leader
• All land and domestic air transport
• Accommodation as specified
• Meals as specified
• Excursions as specified
Not included in the journey price
• Tips and insurance
• Meals other than specified
• Optional excursions
There are optional excursions available throughout this holiday bookable locally through your tour leader once you are in Latin America. Not all excursions available will suit everybody, whilst others only operate within certain seasons, with minimum numbers or may not be included due to time constraints. Prices can fluctuate depending on the size of the party and so cannot be provided accurately until travel commences, but a budget of $150-200USD should cover participation in a wide range of the following options. The list below is only a guideline, so please enquire with your tour leader for any further areas of interest:
• Arequipa: visit Santa Catalina Convent
• Arequipa: visit the frozen mummies in the Museo Santuarios Andinos
• Colca Canyon: walking or horse riding excursions
• Colca Canyon: visit to a planetarium
• Puno: excursion to the funeral towers of Sillustani
• Machu Picchu: re-entry to the ruins
• Machu Picchu: climb Huayna Picchu (this excursion must be pre-booked due to availability issues so please let the office know before travel). Please note that this is a vigorous climb, involving very steep steps and uneven terrain. It would not be recommended for anyone suffering from vertigo. For more information, please contact your travel consultant
• Sacred Valley: Maras village (salt pans) and Moray archaeological site
• Cusco: white water rafting, horse riding, visits to Inca ruins
There is no extra cost for single travellers who are willing to share a room. You will be accommodated with another same-sex member of the group who is also travelling solo. For single travellers who wish to have their own room there are a limited number of single rooms available, which carry a surcharge.
The unit of currency in Peru is the sol.
It is difficult to give a precise guide for essential expenses but a budget of around $45USD per day should cover the cost of meals not included in the tour price, drinks and the odd souvenir. Eat at the best restaurants and you will pay considerably more.
How to take it
Cash machines are available in all major cities and towns, and so a debit or credit card with a PIN number is the most convenient way of withdrawing money while on your trip, and in most shops and restaurants you can also pay by card. However, since cards can get lost, damaged, withheld or blocked, you should not rely exclusively on a card to access funds.
We recommend that you take a reasonable quantity of US dollars cash (no more than is covered by your insurance), which you can exchange into local currency. These bills should be in good condition as soiled or torn bills may be refused. Travellers’ cheques are increasingly less favoured by visitors who find them difficult to exchange as well as offering a poor rate of exchange. If you do decide to carry some with you they should be US dollar cheques only (American Express are by far the most accepted brand).
Tips are normally welcomed and expected. Local guides often rely on their tip as a significant proportion of their income. We recommend approximately $3USD (or local equivalent) per person per day for each of guides and drivers, depending on the size of the group.
Most service industry workers will expect a tip of some kind and so it is useful to have spare change for hotel porters, taxi drivers and the like. It is common to leave 10 - 12% in restaurants.
If you would like to show your appreciation to your Journey Latin America tour leader, who you may feel has exceeded your expectations, a discretionary gratuity would be gratefully received. As a guideline we recommend an amount of between $4 and $6USD per person, per day. You are obviously free to tip more or less as you see fit, depending on your perception of service quality.
Travel insurance is essential. Details of our recommended policy can be found on our Travel Insurance
There are some early mornings and a couple of long days of travel on this trip, though all land journeys are very scenic. The countryside walks are optional, some more strenuous than others, and you can discuss with your tour leader which are suitable for you around Machu Picchu and in the Colca Canyon. The streets in Cusco are cobbled and steep and you must be cautious at altitude.
Lima is covered in a dull grey mist for much of the year, although the sun does break through between November and March. It almost never rains in Lima, and temperatures are moderate. Arequipa is sunnier than Lima and for most of the year it is warm enough to wear a shirt during the day and perhaps a light jumper at night.
The rainy season in the Andes runs between November and April when there are showers most afternoons. The dry season is in June, July and August when the sun is strong during the day, but at night the temperature drops dramatically (from freezing point to 10°C). May, September and October are less predictable, with both rainy and sunny spells.
Your stays in the Colca Canyon, Lake Titicaca area, Cusco and the Sacred Valley are at high altitude (2,800-4,000m). A small minority of visitors may suffer temporarily from altitude sickness. Symptoms vary; most common are mild headaches, slight nausea and breathlessness. If you don’t recover in a day or two speak to your tour leader; in very rare instances it is necessary to descend to lower altitudes. Most people are unaffected and if you drink plenty of water and allow your body to acclimatise (don’t exert yourself or drink alcohol) in the first couple of days after arrival, you will minimise your chances of suffering any symptoms.
Please refer to our Briefing Dossier
for further information.
Clothing and special equipment
For day-to-day wear you should go prepared to encounter all seasons. Both warm clothing (some passengers recommend a light wooly hat and gloves) and a sun hat are essential at altitude; a light fleece jacket and a Gore-Tex (or similar) outer shell makes a good combination. Trousers, skirt or shorts made from light, quick-drying synthetic materials work well. If you plan to eat in smart restaurants, although clothing is not formal (no need for jacket and tie), something quite smart would be appropriate. Strong, comfortable footwear is essential and you should bring insect repellent, sun block and sun glasses. You might wish to take swimwear for the hot springs and for the occasional pool.
Due to luggage restrictions on the train to Machu Picchu, you will leave the bulk of your baggage in Cusco. You can take up to 5kgs per person on the train and an overnight holdall is recommended to separate your luggage for the night spent away.
Please get in touch with the office before departure if you have any doubts. Good equipment is very important and hard to come by in South America.
Preventative vaccinations are recommended against the following: typhoid; polio; tetanus; hepatitis A. For specific requirements you must consult your GP. You can also find helpful information on the Masta Travel Health
Holders of a full British passport do not require a visa, although passports must be valid for at least 6 months after the trip begins. Anyone with a different nationality should enquire with us or check with the relevant consulate.
If flying to the US, or via the US you will need to fill in your online ESTA application.