Explore the richness of Peru on this 10-night adventure. In Lima, take in colonial architecture and savor a Peruvian dinner at a historic home. Travel to Cusco and the Sacred Valley to learn about Inca heritage, then meet residents of an Andean village. Ride a train through the Andes to tour lofty Machu Picchu. Spend three nights aboard the deluxe Delfin III on a cruise through the Amazon rainforest. This active journey features two round-trip flights in Peru, deluxe and first-class hotels, and an extensive meal plan with wine at dinner.
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DAY 1: Lima, Peru
Arrive at Jorge Chávez International Airport. An AHI Travel representative will be waiting there to take you to the Casa Andina Premium Miraflores.
DAY 2: Lima
Visit the Larco Museum, which chronicles the development of pre-Columbian societies, and walk through the pottery storeroom where 30,000 exquisite artifacts are displayed. In the UNESCO World Heritage historic center, visit Plaza Mayor, lined with majestic colonial buildings, the stately Cathedral and the Monastery of San Francisco. Tonight, gather at Casa Garcia Alvarado, a historic house, for a Welcome Reception and Dinner. After a tour, savor a home-cooked meal with one of the owners.
DAY 3: Lima | Iquitos | Nauta | Cruising the Amazon Basin
Fly to Iquitos, a lively town filled with colorful tuk-tuks and 19th-century mansions, and then travel to Nauta. At a private port on the Marañon River, embark the Delfin III. Savor fantastic views from the deck while your naturalist guide provides an overview of your cruise schedule and activities. As you sail by the confluence of three rivers known as Union de los Rios, delight in the vividly colorful evening sky in the Amazon rain forest.
DAY 4: Cruising the Amazon Basin
Pacaya Samiria National Reserve, where the ship cruises, is Peru’s largest wildlife preserve with more than 5 million acres of astounding biodiversity. Today, set out aboard skiff boats to explore creeks and lagoons where blue and yellow macaws, toucans, umbrella birds and capybaras hide in the deep rain forest. Lucky travelers may glimpse the endangered charapa turtle, spider monkey or red macaw. Marvel at the pink dolphins, or boto, known for their intelligence and agility.
DAY 5: Cruising the Amazon Basin
Hike into the rain forest to explore the bountiful flora and fauna with your naturalist guide. Spot squirrel and red howler monkeys, iguanas lazing in the sun and sloths hanging in the upper canopy. You’ll also likely see brilliant parrots, hawks, hummingbirds and “laughing” falcons. In fact, over 1,300 species of birds are found in the Amazon! Later, back on the ship, a local expert explains how modern Peru has been shaped by its past.
DAY 6: Nauta | Iquitos | Lima | Cusco
Disembark the ship in Nauta this morning. On your way to the Iquitos airport, visit the Manatee Rescue Center to meet these gentle creatures up close. Fly to Lima and then on to Cusco. Once you arrive, take a panoramic drive to the breathtaking Urubamba Valley, the Sacred Valley of the Incas, where farm fields and traditional Andean villages are tucked amid towering mountain slopes. Check in to the Casa Andina Premium Valle Sagrado.
DAY 7: Sacred Valley
Today, take in the impressive Ollantaytambo ruins, featuring huge terraces that hug the hillside. Originally a religious complex, Ollantaytambo was employed as a fortress in the 16th century when Inca emperor Manco Inca successfully fought off Spanish conquistadors. Afterward, visit with the residents of a nearby village and learn about daily life in this challenging mountain environment and their centuries-old weaving methods. Continue to a local ranch for lunch and an equestrian demonstration.
DAY 8: Sacred Valley | Machu Picchu
Journey by train through the scenic Sacred Valley to the town of Aguas Calientes and the Inkaterra Machu Picchu Pueblo hotel at the foot of Machu Picchu. Archaeologists believe that this lofty, masterfully planned site surrounded by steep agricultural terraces served as a center of worship or a royal estate for Inca emperors. Explore Machu Picchu’s plazas and buildings, including the Temple of the Three Windows, the Sacristy and the Temple of the Sun.
DAY 9: Machu Picchu | Cusco
During free time this morning, pursue your own interests or take advantage of the hotel’s amenities. Then travel by train through the beautiful mountain scenery and by motor coach to Cusco. After checking in to the Palacio del Inka, enjoy the evening at leisure. Peru’s cuisine offers a tantalizing blend of eclectic styles and flavors. Your Travel Director can offer suggestions on where to try authentic dishes like ceviche and lomo saltado, a beef stir-fry.
DAY 10: Cusco
Perched 11,152 feet above sea level, Cusco was the most sacred Inca city. Learn about the Incas’ religious beliefs during visits to the Cathedral and the Santo Domingo Church, built on the foundations of Koricancha Temple. Next, visit the ruins of Sacsayhuaman, constructed with massive stones precisely fitted together without any mortar. This ancient fortress overlooks the red-tiled roofs of Cusco and the spectacular, lush countryside. Celebrate your remarkable Peruvian adventure at tonight’s Farewell Reception.
DAY 11: Cusco | Lima | Depart for home city
Enjoy your morning at leisure in Cusco, followed by a final lunch in town with your fellow travelers. Afterward, fly from Cusco to Lima for your international flight home.
DAY 12: In transit
NOTE: Itinerary may change due to local conditions.