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Itinerary for ~10 days in Peru

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Itinerary for ~10 days in Peru

Hi everyone,

There is so much great information on the Peru forum. I was hoping to get some feedback on my itinerary. My husband and I will be traveling to Peru in mid-september. We have a friend who just moved to Lima so we wanted to visit her but do not have many days of vacation left, :(

Anyway, here is the working itinerary:

Friday: Arrive in Lima (probably late)

Saturday: Fly to Cuzco then travel to Ollantaytambo to acclimate at lower elevation

Sunday: Explore Sacred valley (Piasc Sunday market, Chinchero sunday market, salt terrace, Moray), we do not plan to do all these in one day but will save some for the next day

Monday: Explore Sacred Valley, evening train to Aguas Calientes

Tuesday: early train to Machu Picchu (or possibly hiking to sun gate), Huyana Picchu; evening train to Cuzco

Wednesday: Cuzco

Thursday: Cuzco

Friday: Bus to Puno (if arrive early enough tour Sillustani)

Saturday: Lake Titicaca

Sunday: Probably Fly to Lima (expensive but saves a lot of time)

Monday: Lima


What is the best way to go from Cuzco to Ollantaytambo? What is better, the hike to the sun gate or Huyana Picchu? If both are worth our time does it make sense to do a full day at machu picchu then a morning the next day? This would cut sometime off Cuzco so is it worth it?

I was hoping to see Arequipa but it doesn't seem like we have enough time to fit it in, any suggestions on how it might work?


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Lima Region, Peru
Pucallpa Amazon Tours
City Tours, Boat Tours, Eco Tours, Sightseeing Tours, Nature & Wildlife Tours
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1. Re: Itinerary for ~10 days in Peru

I forgot to ask, from what I read September is the tail end of the high season, should I book hotels before I arrive or is it slow enough that I can find things when I get to the sacred valley? I'm assuming I should book for Machu Picchu as soon as I confirm my itinerary. What about the bus from Puno to Cuzco, should I book early or can I wait until we are in Cuzco?

Thanks again

Chicago, Illinois
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2. Re: Itinerary for ~10 days in Peru

On Tuesday, I'd suggest skipping Huayana Picchu. It's a fun hike and great view, but with only one, not quite full day in MP, I'd spend it wandering around. The sun gate hike is free. If you have time and feel like you want a hike, do that instead. Unless you really have to do a hike, I'd say stick with one day in MP to leave 2 days in Cusco. There's definitely 2 days worth of stuff to see there.

The easiest way to get from Cusco airport to Ollantaytambo is to have your hotel in Olly arrange an airport pickup for you. Cheapest is with one of the local collectivo bus/vans that run up and down the SV.

On Friday, you won't arrive early enough to tour anything in Puno. It's a long bus ride from Cusco. Unless you take an overnight bus, don't plan on arriving until late afternoon. We did the tourist bus in May on Inka Express and booked ahead to make sure we got seats. We did read about some people who had to wait a day or two to get on a bus because they were all booked. If you're just doing a regular bus, it is probably easier to get seats. Our bus was full.

My understanding is September is still reasonably busy. If you know where you want to stay, you might as well book ahead. You're not gaining anything by waiting other than some flexibility if your plans change. If you just show up in a town, you may have to look around for a hotel and not end up at a place you wanted.

Your itinerary is extremely similar to the one we had in May. We did go to Arequipa and Colca at the end, but it did extend the trip a couple days. I see two ways to squeeze it in, depending what you want to do.

1. On Sunday, fly to Arequipa and spend the day. Stay the night. Get a Monday morning or early afternoon flight to Lima and a late night flight home from Lima. There are many flights from AQP to LIM so you can do this and leave ample time to make the international connection.

2. If you want to see Colca Canyon, which is why many people go to Arequipa, on Sunday, 4M bus to Colca. See Colca. Monday, day tour to see the Condors in Colca, end back in Arequipa. You actually could make a Monday flight to LIM and then a late flight home. Or stay the night in AQP and then fly AQP-LIM-home on Tuesday, probably arriving home on Wednesday.

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Cusco Region, Peru
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3. Re: Itinerary for ~10 days in Peru

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