Savoring Peru’s Culinary Treasures
Peruvian cuisine has been made famous by the likes of world-renowned Peruvian chefs Gaston Acurio and Virgilio Martinez, and in recent memory Peru has been consistently ranked as one of the top culinary destinations the world over. Let the flavors speak for themselves in this private Peru culinary tour for your taste buds. From dining at some of the restaurants voted best in the world, to trying your hosts’ Grandma’s family recipes, to pairing pisco with gourmet hours d’oeuvres, come prepared with an open mind and a hefty appetite! Do you fancy sampling the local delicacy “cuy” (guinea pig), marveling at giant-kernelled Incan corn, digging into a feast fresh from an earthen oven, or trying your own hand at flambeing “Lomo Saltado”? If so, we invite you to come with us to savor culinary delights on a once-in-a-lifetime Peru culinary tour. ¡Buen Provecho!
- In Lima, Peru’s “City of Kings,” dine at restaurants that top the list of the World’s 50 Best Restaurants
- Visit an ancient hacienda and learn about the giant white-kernelled corn originally cultivated and worshipped by Incan royalty!
- Dig into a true Peruvian feast prepared al fresco over white-hot stones: the Pachamanca
- Wine and dine your way to Machu Picchu, Peru’s ancient lost citadel
- Learn about salt-harvesting practices passed down through generations at salt pans carved into the mountainside
- Visit indigenous markets where you can sample local spices, peculiar concoctions, and exotic fruits!
- Taste your way through Peruvian cuisine in Cusco, sampling locally-sourced chocolate, coffee, and the grape-based spirit Pisco.
- Spend an afternoon with one of Cusco’s award-winning chefs, learning insider tricks of the trade
Itinerary at a Glance
Day 1: Welcome to Peru! – International Arrival in Lima
Day 2: Introduction to the City of Kings – Afternoon Visit to the Larco Herrera Museum and the Historic City Center
Day 3: Pisac – Agricultural Cornerstone in the Sacred Valley – Fly to Cusco; One-of-a-Kind Hacienda Experience and Visit to the Pisac Ruins & Market
Day 4: Uncovering Ollantaytambo’s Secrets – Hike through Patacancha, Visit Ollantaytambo’s Iconic Ruins, and Enjoy a Peruvian Feast!
Day 5: The Lost City of the Incas – Machu Picchu – Morning Train through the Cloud Forest, Private Tour of Machu Picchu
Day 6: Hiking Huayna Picchu – Hike a coveted limited-entry hike with your guide
Day 7: The Past, Present, and Future of the Sacred Valley – Private Tour of the Ruins at Moray, the Salt Pans at Maras, and a Rural Village
Day 8: Walking Through the Centuries in the Imperial City – Morning Walking Tour of Cusco’s Historic City Center, Afternoon Tasting Tour
Day 9: Cusco’s Culinary Delights – Morning at Leisure, Afternoon Cooking Class (Group Service)
Day 10: Bidding Farewell to Peru – Fly From Cusco to Lima. Explore Barranco and Enjoy Dinner. Fly Home
DAY 1: Welcome to Peru!
International Arrival in Lima
You will find us waiting for you when your international flight arrives in Lima. Look for the Kuoda sign with your name and the smile. We will escort you to your hotel, check you in and help you get settled. You’ll then be able to rinse away the feeling of a long flight and enjoy a good night’s rest!
DAY 2: Introduction to the City of Kings
Afternoon Visit to the Larco Herrera Museum and the Historic City Center
Afternoon Visit to the Larco Herrera Museum and the Historic City Center
Wake up refreshed and enjoy breakfast in your hotel this morning. You have the morning to spend at your leisure, either enjoying the comforts of your hotel or exploring vibrant Miraflores!
At the appropriate time mid-day, we’ll collect you and bring you to the Pueblo Libre neighborhood, home to the Larco Herrera Museum. Housing the country’s largest collection of pre-Columbian artifacts (including extensive gold and silver collections, as well as the infamous erotic archaeological collection) and providing rare open access to their exquisitely catalogued storage area, this museum is the perfect introduction to Peru’s multi-faceted cultural history. First, you’ll begin your visit with a delicious lunch enjoyed on the vine-covered terrace of the Museum’s café, and then you’ll have time to explore the exhibits.
Next we’ll delve into the heart of Peru’s “City of Kings,” where you’ll visit the Plaza Mayor, featuring the current President’s palace, the Convent of San Francisco (including subterranean catacombs!) and the Casa Aliaga, which is the western hemisphere’s oldest mansion and still owned and inhabited by the 17th generation of the Aliaga family.
Upon completion of your tour, we will bring you to a restaurant of your choice where we will have secured reservations for you. We highly recommend the restaurants Central or Maido, currently holding positions #5 and #8 respectively in the world’s 50 Best Restaurants for 2017 (though please remember reservations here should be secured a month or two in advance!).
DAY 3: Pisac – Agricultural Cornerstone in the Sacred Valley
Fly to Cusco; One-of-a-Kind Hacienda Experience and Visit to the Pisac Ruins & Market
You will wake up refreshed and enjoy a complimentary breakfast in your hotel before we escort you to the airport for your morning flight to Cusco. Watch the windows as the desert coast rises into the snow-capped peaks of the Andes! We will be waiting for you when touch down at our small Andean airport and, before you can even feel the altitude, we’ll whisk you into the Sacred Valley
Just 30 minutes outside of Cusco, true Peruvian countryside will stretch away on either side of you, cows and sheep grazing tranquilly road-side. Impossibly steep peaks rise in the distance. Your journey will take you first to an ancient hacienda, nestled in the fertile valley next to the pueblo of Pisac. Step onto the family-owned hacienda grounds and step into centuries past while your hosts expound upon the growing process of Giant White Corn and its profound cultural significance in the Andes Mountains. This hacienda dates back generations, and you’ll immediately be immersed in local customs steeped in the spirits and mysticism of the Andes, and embraced by the warmth of local Peruvians.
Relish your time on the farm with a delicious multi-course lunch with sample dishes featuring none other than the “white gold” giant-kernelled corn, and make sure to visit the on-site stables housing the renowned Peruvian Paso horses. Watch the horses dance with their human counterparts in a “marinera” demonstration, and even go for a quick trot yourself if you feel up to the task!
Upon completion of your hacienda visit, you’ll press on into the heart of the Sacred Valley. Stop at the traditional market of Pisac where vendors come from miles around to peddle their wares: plant-based dyes and pigments, hand-made cloth and ceramics, and locally-forged silver jewelry. Your final stop today will be at your hotel, where you’ll pass an evening at leisure.
DAY 4: Uncovering Ollantaytambo’s Secrets
Hike through Patacancha, Visit Ollantaytambo’s Iconic Ruins, and Enjoy a Peruvian Feast!
Today’s journey through the Sacred Valley of the Incas will start with a drive through the breathtaking Patacancha Valley. At the ruins of Pumamarca we’ll begin our hike down a pre-Columbian trail, following irrigation canals that line terraced fields still in use today.
After approximately two hours of easy hiking, we’ll find ourselves in the Incan town of Ollantaytambo, one of the few remaining places in Peru that retains its original Incan urban planning. You’ll note still-functioning street canals, multi-family houses with secret interior courtyards and iconic Incan trapezoidal doors. Here we’ll visit the Incan fortress perched on the mountainside overlooking the sleepy pueblo, and learn about nearby stone quarries and the pivotal Incan battle fought here.
We hope you worked up an appetite while hiking, because next on the schedule is a true Peruvian feast: the traditional Pachamanca! The centuries-old Pachamanca tradition involves marinating lamb, pork, chicken, and potatoes in a variety of Andean ingredients and cooking them to perfection in an underground oven. You’ll witness each step of the process: how the oven is prepared, how white-hot stones are layered, and how the feast materializes before your eyes. While waiting for your feast to roast, make sure to wander through the grounds’ organic garden, smell the fresh-roasted coffee produced by the farm’s head roaster, and sample some of the varieties of cañazo (a local Andean spirit) that are produced on-site at the one-of-a-kind distillery.
Upon completion of your tour, we will bring you back to your hotel for an evening spent at leisure.
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: The Past, Present, and Future of the Sacred Valley
Private Tour of the Ruins at Moray, the Salt Pans at Maras, and a Rural Village
Today you will weave through the Sacred Valley’s most fertile agricultural lands and experience an unforgettable blend of the past, present, and future.
Your first stop of the day will be revisiting centuries past at the ancient Inca ruins at Moray. Some experts still believe these concentric circles served as an agricultural laboratory, though nobody has yet been able to confirm their true purpose. Form your own hypothesis as you peer deep into these beautiful feats of engineering and stonemasonry. We will then transport ourselves to the present and continue through the small town of Maras before arriving at iconic salt pans carved into the mountainside. In use to this day, each of thousands of flat white pools terracing the hillside has been passed down through generations since pre-Incan times, providing sustenance and income. The intricate network of waterways and white evaporation pools seem like a work of modern art. We will then pause for a locally-prepared lunch enjoyed with panoramic views.
After lunch, we will take you to visit our friends in a small village and glimpse the promising future that awaits the rural Sacred Valley. Surrounded by towering mountains and hugging the shore of the breathtakingly blue Lake Piuray, agriculture dominates life in this close-knit place. The women of the village are weaving masters that use Incan techniques, materials, and patterns, and have formed a weaving association providing community development through sales and teachings. You will also meet some of the local children who attend Kuoda’s after-school program, which provides a much needed haven of extra school supplies, homework help, and perhaps most importantly, encouragement to stay in school. The kids love to show off their drawings and computer skills!
This town is far off the beaten-track, so you won’t see other travellers here. You will get to meet some of the friendliest people in Peru and witness how a more traditional way of life is adapting to the passage of time. Finally, after experiencing first-hand the past, present, and future of the Sacred Valley, we will bring you to your hotel in Cusco for a leisurely evening.
**Your unique hotel is home to the excellent French restaurant Le Soleil, consistently ranked as one of the best restaurants in all of Cusco. Dinner is on us tonight!
DAY 8: Walking Through the Centuries in the Imperial City
Morning Walking Tour of Cusco’s Historic City Center, Afternoon Tasting City
This morning you will experience the lay of the land as only true world travelers know how: on foot traversing hidden alleyways, historic plazas, and local treasures. After breakfast on your own, your private guide will proceed to illuminate Cusco’s rich tapestry woven by its inviting cobblestone streets, charming neighborhoods, and astounding landmarks.
Your first stop of the day will be to the Santo Domingo monastery, perched atop the most sacred of Incan sites, the Qoricancha temple of the sun. Once bathed in 24-karat gold long-since pilfered by Spanish conquistadors, this temple is now an astounding blend of Incan stonemasonry and colonial architecture. From there you’ll stop in at the colonial Cathedral in the Plaza de Armas, and the Pre-Colombian Art Museum, housing an unparalleled collection of Incan artifacts in pristine condition.
Next, climb up to the bohemian neighborhood of San Blas, known for its whitewashed adobe buildings and quaint blue balconies. Top off your tour with a visit to a local indigenous market brimming with a rainbow of local fruits and traditional remedies, and make sure to pause at the 12-angled stone nestled in a wall that has withstood the test of time (as well as a couple of earth-shattering earthquakes!).
Upon conclusion of your tour your guide will leave you with suggestions as to where you can find a light local lunch, but make sure to save some room for the snacks that await you in your Peru culinary tour this afternoon! First make your way to the Coffee Museum, just a ten minute walk from your hotel, where a stimulating aroma will welcome you in. After a workshop detailing coffee’s history as well as how it is grown, sorted, and roasted, you will be whisked away to the Chocolate Museum. Did you know that Peru is the birthplace of chocolate? Here you will learn about its spectacular history and the unique process that chocolate undergoes from plant to plate. Best of all, make your own chocolate truffles to bring home with you! Lastly, you will find yourself in the Republica del Pisco to taste an assortment of the country’s spirit-of-choice paired with Peruvian fusion appetizers. This is the perfect way to know which Pisco variety you’ll want to take home with you!
DAY 9: Cusco’s Culinary Delights
Morning at Leisure, Afternoon Cooking Class (Group Service)
Today you have a free morning. Sleep in and relax, or get up early to watch the Plaza de Armas come to life with the sunrise! You have the whole morning to spend at your leisure, exploring Cusco and its fascinating streets and shops. Have a late-morning snack or light lunch, but nothing too heavy, as you will want to show up to your afternoon activity hungry!
In the early afternoon, continue with your Peru culinary tour by heading to one of Cusco’s best restaurants and spend the afternoon learning about Peru’s culinary history and current cuisine from one of the best area chefs. You will learn how to make Peruvian starters and entrees, accompanied by a never-ending stream of snacks and samples fresh from the restaurant’s oven. Delight your palate with exotic fruits, make Pisco-based cocktails, learn a traditional way to slice vegetables, and spend the afternoon laughing and enjoying this truly special cooking class.
DAY 10: Bidding Farewell to Peru
Fly From Cusco to Lima, Explore Barranco and Enjoy Dinner. Fly Home
At the appropriate time late this morning, we will escort you to the Cusco airport for your return flight to Lima. Watch the windows as the snow-capped peaks of the Andes become coastal desert!
Your Kuoda Lima host will meet you upon arrival and bring you to the bohemian Barranco neighborhood one of Lima’s up-and-coming artsy areas. You’ll start off on foot and visit such highlights as the Barranco boardwalk and the famous “Puente de los Suspiros,” which has been a meeting point for young lovers for decades and has inspired many famous Peruvian poets and singers. You’ll also wander past local art galleries, window shopping or ducking inside for a better look at their treasures, and visit the picturesque main plaza in Barranco. Be prepared for some delicious snacks and maybe even a taste of locally-brewed Peruvian craft beer!
Upon completion of your walking tour in Barranco, your private vehicle will bring you to a restaurant of your choosing, where we will have secured reservations for you. Savor the flavors of award-winning Peruvian cuisine and reflect upon your journey over the last ten days spent savoring Peru’s culinary treasures.
At the appropriate time, we will bring you to the airport for your journey home. We will help you check in for your international flight and wish you “buen viaje!”
Like the sound of experiencing the best of Peruvian cuisine with this Savoring Peru’s Culinary Treasures tour? Get in touch with Kuoda and we’ll start devising your very own custom Peru travel experience.
- Spend the afternoon sampling locally-brewed craft beers paired with gourmet appetizers, learning about the up-and-coming beer scene from one of the movement’s founders
- Visit Pisco distilleries in the coastal desert and learn about the political history surrounding Peru’s spirit of choice
- Spend an afternoon in a rural community, learning about modern-day subsistence farming and ancient agricultural practices
- Delight in an Amazonian culinary experience in Lima. Visit a renowned Amazonian restaurant and learn about various exotic fruits and vegetables.
- Experience a Nikkei (Peruvian-Japanese Fusion) culinary experience in Lima. Visit one of the world’s top-ranked restaurants, Maido, for an unforgettable Peruvian cuisine experience!
- Discover why Lima is considered the ultimate city for a Peru culinary tour. Savor Lima’s rich Peruvian cuisine, culture, and fascinating history through a variety of restaurants, styles, and districts in only one day!
- 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.
- 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 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 hand picks the best hotels in the country to ensure you experience utmost comfort and character.
Feel free to browse our recommendations and let us know if you’d like to incorporate a specific property in your customized journey!
This sample itinerary will open your eyes (and taste buds) to the award-winning cuisine of Peru, and allow you to discover and savor traditional Peruvian cuisine. This itinerary savoring Peru’s culinary treasures will serve as the perfect inspiration for any Peru culinary tour!
Please know we will work with you to change or modify these tours however you deem necessary – all Kuoda itineraries are crafted just for you, built to suit your individual interests and schedules. Interested in customizing this particular itinerary?
The price will be based on final accommodation choices, travel dates, and other custom preferences.