Ancient Marvels, Peru and Bolivia Tour
Pens at the ready – this sample luxury Peru and Bolivia tour is the perfect way to tick off some of those bucket-list dreams. Cruising on Lake Titicaca? Tick! Playing around with proportions as you capture epic photographs at the world’s largest salt flats at Uyuni? Tick! Watching the sun crest over the Andean pinnacles at the ever-enchanting Machu Picchu? That too! This comprehensive tour combines Southern Peru’s finest sights (including the colonial city of Arequipa, the impressively deep Colca Canyon, the old Inca capital of Cusco, the Sacred Valley and, of course, Machu Picchu) with the best of Bolivia (including Lake Titicaca, the Salt Flats of Uyuni, dynamic La Paz and the charming colonial city of Sucre). This route showcases South America in all its glory and is guaranteed to give you a taste of true Andean hospitality!
- Visit the colonial mansion of Casa Aliaga, one of the oldest houses not just in Peru but in the Americas as a whole.
- Pet llamas, alpacas and other wool-producing Andean camelids at the Awanakancha Living Museum.
- Visit rural communities in the Sacred Valley towns of Pisac and Ollantaytambo.
- Immerse yourself in local life with visits to remote Andean villages that are, for most tourists, unchartered territory.
- Embark on a private city tour of Cusco, whose fascinating streets feature a unique concoction of Inca ruins and colonial constructions.
- Scale the ancient stone stairway up Machu Picchu’s neighboring peak, Huayna Picchu.
- Tour Machu Picchu with your very own expert guide who can explain all about the history, architecture and theories surrounding the site, before wandering independently among the iconic ruins the following day.
- Discover the delights of Peruvian cuisine at the country’s finest dining establishments.
- Enjoy enriching experiences with local artists at their workshops.
- Special visits to local indigenous communities on the islands of Lake Titicaca, the world’s highest navigable lake.
- Wander among desiccated frogs and dehydrated animals at La Paz’s witches’ market.
- Learn about the myths and mysteries of a lost civilization at Tiahuanaco, an archaeological site that predates the Egyptian pyramids.
- Gasp at the jaw-dropping views of Bolivia’s Cordillera Real mountain range while spending a night on Lake Titicaca’s Moon Island.
- Whiz around the Salt Flats of Uyuni on a private 4×4, experiencing and photographing all its surreal splendor.
- Admire the sparkling white colonial architecture of Sucre – a city many proclaim to be Bolivia’s prettiest.
- Explore Bolivia’s celebrated spots and unexpected gems.
- Explore both the iconic and unknown parts of Bolivia, such as the steaming Sol de Mañana hot springs, the barren “Desert of Dali” and breathtaking colored lagoons.
- Play around with forced perspective photography at the Salt Flats at Uyuni.
- Come face to face with exotic wildlife throughout your personalized journey.
Itinerary at a Glance
Day 1: Welcome to Lima! – Arrival in Lima
Day 2: Exploring Peru’s City of Kings – Fly to Lima / Tour of colonial Lima
Day 3: Over the Andes to the Sacred Valley – Flight from Lima to Cusco – private car to the Sacred Valley
Day 4: Delving into past and present in the Sacred Valley
Day 5: The Lost City of the Incas: Machu Picchu – Machu Picchu!
Day 6: Hiking Huayna Picchu – Hike a coveted limited-entry hike with your guide, Return to Cusco
Day 7: Exploring the Imperial City of Cusco – Private tour of Cusco and its Inca Ruins
Day 8: Toward Lake Titicaca – Fly to Juliaca (Puno), transfer to Titilaka (group service)
Day 9: Lake Titicaca’s magical islands – A boat tour of the Uros floating islands and Taquile (group service)
Day 10: On to Bolivia – Overland transfer to La Paz and free time in the afternoon
Day 11: The Salar de Uyuni – Fly to Uyuni and tour the spectacular salt flats
Day 12: Exploring La Paz and curious landscapes – Return to La Paz, city tour and wonder at the Valley of the Moon
Day 13: Bidding farewell to South America – Transfer to airport and fly home
DAY 1: Welcome to Lima!
Arrival in Lima
We’ll meet you at the airport in Lima, take you to your hotel and help you get settled. After a long flight, you’re bound to be a little tired so we’ll let you catch up on sleep ahead of tomorrow’s activities.
DAY 2: Exploring Peru’s City of Kings
Fly to Lima / Tour of colonial Lima
After breakfast, we will embark on a private tour of Lima that will take you to the beautiful colonial center of the city. Visit the Lima Cathedral and the Convent of San Francisco, whose eerie catacombs house tens of thousands of skeletal remains. You’ll also get to see Casa Aliaga. One of the oldest mansions in the New World, this history-steeped house has been occupied by the same family since its construction in 1535.
The afternoon will be yours to spend as you please. You might want to hit the shops, further explore the historic center or making the most of your hotel’s luxurious facilities. You have access to the Miraflores Park Club Lounge, where you can enjoy a complimentary light lunch and evening snack buffet.
DAY 3: Over the Andes to the Sacred Valley
Flight from Lima to Cusco – Private Car to the Sacred Valley
We’ll escort you to the airport following breakfast for your morning flight to Cusco. Glance out the plane window for a bird’s-eye view of the topography as the flatter desert coast transitions to the Andes. We’ll meet you in Cusco and take you for lunch, before bringing you out to the more manageable altitudes of the Sacred Valley.
Though it’s just 45 minutes from Cusco, the Sacred Valley is at a lower altitude and therefore, better for acclimatizing. This steep-sided valley is populated by hard-working locals who tend sheep and cattle in the fields beneath the looming Andean peaks. We’ll take to Awanakancha Living Museum, where you can observe traditional weavers spinning their yarn and meet the llamas, alpacas and other furry camelids who supply them with their wool.
DAY 4: Delving into past and present in the Sacred Valley
Today, you’ll enjoy a private tour around the ruins and market towns of Cusco’s Sacred Valley. Wander the slender streets of the valley town of Ollantaytambo and look out for original Inca features, among them the babbling street canals and trapezoidal doors. Climb the agricultural terraces to reach the ancient fortress, where the Incas gained a rare victory over the Spanish conquistadors.
From there, you’ll continue on to the market town of Pisac with your private guide. Inspect the colorful crafts and textiles and look out for the produce stands, which can be found sandwiched between the alpaca-sweater stalls. End the day with a private guide of Pisac’s Inca ruins, which sit high up on a mountain ridge above the town.
At the end of the day, your guide and driver will bring you back to your hotel for a quiet evening.
DAY 5: The Lost City of the Incas: Machu Picchu
Morning Train through the Cloud Forest, Private Afternoon Tour of Machu Picchu
Prepare for a climactic day! In the morning, we will board the train in Ollantaytambo for our journey to Machu Picchu. Watch the cloud jungle pass by through the large glass windows! Upon arrival to Aguas Calientes, we’ll tuck in to an early lunch in order to refuel before ascending to Peru’s lost citadel.
After a bus ride to the gates of this wonder of the world, you will pass through the main gates with your private guide to finally emerge at the top of the world – Machu Picchu. The incredible Inca stone construction will be spread below, alternately hidden and revealed by clouds. Your expert guide will give you a private tour of the ancient city.
Upon conclusion of your tour, return for an evening in Aguas Calientes. Enjoy an excellent dinner on-site at your hotel and fall into bed, lulled to sleep by the sound of the cloud forest around you.
DAY 6: Hiking Huayna Picchu
Hike one of the Coveted, Limited-Entry Hikes at Machu Picchu
At the appropriate time this morning, board the bus with your guide and return to the front gates of Machu Picchu.
We have secured hiking permits for you to scale the iconic sugarloaf peak in the background of the classic Machu Picchu postcard photo – Huayna Picchu! Delight in an alternate perspective of Machu Picchu from the top of what is certainly a true feat of engineering.
Descend to Aguas Calientes for lunch and your return train to Ollantaytambo. We will be waiting in the station for you and will bring you to your hotel for an evening at leisure.
DAY 7: Exploring the Imperial City of Cusco
Private tour of Cusco and its Inca Ruins
Meet your guide after breakfast and set off together to explore the colonial streets and plazas of Cusco. Hear about how this Inca city was once full of Inca treasures and gold, which were later looted during the Spanish conquest. See the Santo Domingo monastery, which sits atop the ancient Inca temple of the sun and the incredible colonial Cathedral in the Plaza de Armas – one of the most stunning displays of colonial opulence in the city.
Next up, we’ll go to the countryside to visit the fortress of Sacsayhuamán – where the Incas staged a great battle against the conquistadors – the temple and amphitheater of Q’enko, and the red fortress of Puca Pucara. Here, you’ll see Inca stonework at its finest; not even a blade of grass can fit between the impeccably cut stones.
Back in Cusco, you’ll have a free afternoon – your guide will provide suggestions for what to do and where to eat.
DAY 8: Toward Lake Titicaca
Fly to Juliaca (Puno), Transfer to Titilaka (group service)
Fly to Juliaca, the jumping-off point for Lake Titicaca, in the morning. Here, you will be met by the Titilaka team, who are based nearby, and they will accompany you and other new guests to their exclusive lakeside hotel.
On arrival, you will be treated to a traditional lunch and given time to settle in, explore and enjoy tea before the afternoon’s activities. You might want to hop in the saddle for gentle bike-ride around the remote shores of Lake Titicaca or paddle a kayak on the lake, looking out for indigenous bird species, striking landscapes and the totora reeds (a type of giant bulrush). After evening cocktails and dinner, gather in Titilaka’s luxurious living room and exchange experiences and highland tales with other like-minded travelers.
DAY 9: Lake Titicaca’s magical island
A boat tour of the Uros floating island and Taquile (group service)
Learning about indigenous cultures is a valuable and rewarding experience, and an integral component of our personalized tours of Peru and Bolivia. Today, you’ll visit some of the island communities who make their home on the shores of Lake Titicaca. At 12,500 feet above sea level, Titicaca is the world’s highest navigable lake. Its high-altitude setting means that even when the sun shines, the wind can be chilly, so be sure to wrap up.
Drift past banks of reeds to the incredible floating islands of Uros, which are home to a self-sufficient island community. For centuries, the Uros people have lived on these man-made islands, which they build and continually maintain themselves using local totora reeds. Their houses and boats are also made of reeds.
Next, travel by motorboat to the large and all-natural island of Taquile, just beyond the Bay of Puno. From a distance, the sight of its grassy cliffs plunging into the blue waters could almost pass for Mediterranean. Up-close, however, it is unmistakably Peruvian. The Quechua-speaking, traditionally dressed residents – who are renowned for their skillful, Peruvian textiles – give it away! After marveling at their knitting patterns, you will return to your hotel for a relaxing evening.
DAY 10: On to Bolivia
Overland transfer to La Paz and free time in the afternoon
Meet your private guide and driver for the journey over to the high-altitude city of La Paz in Bolivia. As you cruise along, enjoy views out the window of shimmering lakes and distance snow-tipped mountains.
Once you arrive in La Paz, we’ll take you up to the Laicacota mirador (viewpoint) and for a sky-high jaunt in the city’s cable car so you can familiarize yourself with the layout. The final destination for the day will be a peaceful neighborhood in the south of the city, where your hotel will be located.
DAY 11: The Salar de Uyuni
Fly to Uyuni and tour the spectacular salt flats
Take a short morning flight to Uyuni, a small town in the middle of the Altiplano desert on the edge of the biggest salt flats in the world.
During a luxury tour of the Uyuni Salt Flats, you’ll marvel at the endless white horizon that is the salt desert, one of the flattest places on earth; discover how they extract the mineral and visit the Salt Museum at the Playa Blanca Salt Hotel. Then drive out onto the flats to visit the cacti-covered coral Incahuasi Island, an isolated ecosystem in the middle of the vast white emptiness. Spy the Tunupa Volcano in the distance and stop by the haunting caves where the poisoned Mummies of Coquesa were discovered, before heading back to your Salt Hotel – yep, it’s made entirely out of salt – for the evening.
DAY 12: Exploring La Paz and curious landscapes
Return to La Paz, City tour and wonder at the Valley of the Moon
After an early breakfast in the Salt Hotel, you’ll fly back to La Paz. Embark on a guided tour of Bolivia’s cultural capital that will take you to the Witches’ market, where local healers sell dried llama fetuses and other strange ingredients for use in spiritual rituals; the elaborate San Francisco Church, which blends Spanish colonial and native-inspired elements; and the colorful handicrafts of Sagarnaga Street. See the grandiose cathedral and government palace on the main square and while away a few hours at the city’s excellent museums.
Later, there will be a change of scenery as you leave the urban center behind and travel out to the Valley of the Moon to take photos of the strange, lunar-esque rock formations.
DAY 13: Bidding farewell to South America
Transfer to airport and fly home
Early in the morning, we will take you to El Alto International Airport for your flight home. Your host will help you to check in and wish you buen viaje.
Like the sound of this Ancient Marvels, Peru and Bolivia tour? Get in touch with Kuoda and we’ll start devising your very own customized South America private travel experience.
- Sit down with a shaman for a private meditation ceremony.
- Observe local weavers at work during private demonstrations.
- Admire views of the Andes from your luxury, vintage-style carriage on the Belmond-owned Hiram Bingham Train.
- Trot around the Sacred Valley on a Peruvian paso horse, with an authentic “challan” (Peruvian horseman) leading the way.
- Take a day hike along part of the famed Inca Trail and arrive in Machu Picchu via the Sun Gate entrance that afternoon.
- Learn about preparing and cooking Peruvian classics with professional local chefs.
- Revel in the gorgeous views as you tuck into lavish picnics that come complete with glassware, crockery and even a professional waiter to serve you.
- Lunch on hearty Peruvian fare hosted by a local family, who will welcome you into their private home.
- Amp up the adrenaline with exhilarating adventure activities, such as riding the fast-flowing rapids of the Vilcanota River or zooming along zip lines in the Andes.
- Relax aboard one of South America’s finest luxury trains, the Andean Explorer: your journey from Cusco to Puno.
- Ride the dizzying cable car lines that traverse La Paz.
- Personalized itinerary planning: Work with a Kuoda Travel Designer to create the trip of your dreams.
- Kuoda hosts take the hassle out of traveling. They’ll be there to assist you – whether with luggage, check in, transport or translating – at every destination during your private tour of Peru and Bolivia.
- Got a question or query? Kuoda operate a 24-hour, seven day a week customer service operation and can provide updates and assistance whenever you need it.
- With Kuoda, you’ll never be bundled in with big groups; each visit, activity, tour and experience will be completely private and conducted by your very own expert, English-speaking guide.
- Our private tours of Peru and Bolivia are fully flexible, which means we can modify them to suit your travel mood. So if you want to cut an activity or add on a new one, just say the word!
- All necessary adventure and trekking equipment will be provided so all you need bring is yourself.
- Receive a customized Kuoda Travel kit upon arrival.
Our staff handpicks the best hotels in each of the countries we operate in to ensure you get ultimate comfort and character during your stay.
Take a look to our recommendations and let us know if you’d like to incorporate one or a few of these options in to your Peru and Bolivia tour.
An exemplary way for any adventure seeking traveler to experience the best of the Andes! This sample Ancient Marvels, Peru & Bolivia itinerary is just the way for you to get inspired.
Please know you can change or modify these tours however you deem necessary as all Kuoda itineraries are crafted just for you, to suit your individual interests and schedules. Interest in getting this trip completely customized?
The price will be based on final accommodation choices, travel dates, and other custom preferences.