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Insight Vacations Treasures of the Incas (Luxury Gold - Summer 2017) (NPBA)

12 Days from Santiago to Lima Print
Tour Style: Insight Luxury Gold Trip
USA, Canada and South America 2017
Visits: Peru

Delve into the mysterious world of the Inca empire on this stylish exploration of Peru. Every detail is taken care of as you journey from the pulsating capital of Lima, to the mist-cloaked mountains of Machu Picchu and halcyon waters of South America's largest lake. All the while enjoying the complete comfort of a Luxury Gold itinerary. Against a backdrop of ancient ruins, indulge in classic Peruvian dining that draws inspiration from ingredients both native and contemporary, at Huaca Pucllana. In Cusco, meet Nilda Callañaupa Alvarez, an expert in traditional weaving, to learn how the TreadRight foundation is helping protect this ancient skill. Enjoy two nights at the award-winning Inkaterra Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel where your elegant room comes complete with a fireplace to warm you each evening.

EPICUREAN DINING

  • Lima: Enjoy a Highlight Lunch at Amor Amar in a trendy, bohemian district.
  • Lima: Located in an unparalleled setting within the compound of a 1500-year-old adobe pyramid built by the original inhabitants of Lima, the menu at Huaca Pucllana is creatively Peruvian, with fusion touches spicing up classic criollo cooking and created by one of the capital's celebrated chefs.
  • Sacred Valley: Experience a caja china lunch, a popular way to create a delicious meal in Peru, cooked in a wooden box.
  • Sacred Valley: Delight in a Pachamama Feast prepared in an underground oven and served in an exquisite garden.
  • Cusco: Dine at MAP restaurant, situated on the patio of the Museum of Pre-Colombian Art. This contemporary Peruvian haute cuisine restaurant offers an artistic dining experience—candlelit for a dazzling evening ambiance.
  • Lima: Savour an inventive selection of Peruvian nouvelle cuisine on your Celebration Dinner at Cala, an oceanfront restaurant.
  • 1 Welcome Dinner (WD), 11 Full Breakfasts (FB), 7 Lunches (L), 5 Dinners (D), 2 Highlight Lunches (HL), 2 Highlight Dinners (HD) and 1 Celebration Dinner (CD).

EXCLUSIVE INSIGHTS

  • Lima: Over a hot chocolate or authentic café pasado, learn the secrets and discover the unique flavour of Peruvian coffee with an expert barista.
  • Lima: Experience the beautiful 'City of Kings' through the eyes of a Local Expert.
  • Macchu Picchu: Learn how to blend the perfect pisco sour.
  • Lima: In the artistic district of Lima, meet sculptor and painter Victor Delfín, best known for his monumental El Beso sculpture, at his workshop.
  • Sacred Valley: The Centre of Traditional Textiles and founder Nilda Callañaupa empower Quechuan women and men in the communities of Chinchero, Chahuaytire and Pitumarca to preserve and teach textile traditions that were disappearing.
  • Sacred Valley: Visit a family in Maras who offer a variety of authentic and regional craft workshops.
  • Sacred Valley: Witness the spectacular terraced salt pans, called Salinas de Maras and learn how the care of them is a family tradition in the region.
  • Sacred Valley: Watch as a local shaman performs a centuries-old ritual just for you and expresses reverence to the Earth.
  • Sacred Valley: Enjoy stunning scenery from the panoramic viewing cars of the Vistadome train.
  • Aguas Calientes: With a Local Expert, explore the cloud forest, visit a working tea plantation and an orchid farm.
  • Machu Picchu: Join your Local Expert for a full-day of discovery of the enigmatic Lost City of the Incas.
  • Sacred Valley: At a local camelid farm, meet llamas, guanacos, alpacas and even the rare vicuña and enjoy an insight into how their soft wool is used to make beautiful woven textiles.
  • Cusco: Join a Local Expert to explore the Temple of Korikancha, Sacsayhuaman and the cathedral.
  • Cusco: Practice your bartering skills at a local market. All purchases are later donated to local needy families.
  • Lake Titicaca: Cruise the lake and learn about the lifestyle and customs of the local people, who bundle reeds from the lake to build floating platforms, houses and canoes.
  • Puno: Explore Sillustani to view the stone burial towers 'chullpas' that have dotted the shores since pre-Inca times.

OUTSTANDING HOTELS

  • Cusco: The stylishly decorated and luxurious JW Marriott El Convento is built atop ancient Incan ruins.
  • Sacred Valley: The elegant Tambo del Inka will ensure an indelible stay.

INCLUSIVE LUXURY GOLD SERVICES

  • Be escorted by the crème de la crème of Insight Travelling Concierges - handpicked for every departure. This skilled guide will act as consummate organiser and be your 'friend in a foreign land'.
  • A personal radio headset gives you the freedom to wander during visits to famous highlights, without missing any of your Local Expert's fascinating insights and commentaries.
  • At every hotel, you'll be treated to seamless baggage handling with prompt delivery right to your door. Hotel and restaurant tips are included - you'll never have to worry about how much to give, nor search for foreign currency. Plus, we include all taxes and porterage charges at hotels.
  • Stay connected with friends and family with our complimentary coach and hotel Wi-Fi.
  • With Insight Flourishes, from time to time, your Travelling Concierge will enchant you with local tidbits, each representing authentic food or beverages unique to the destination.
  • Included airport transfers on Day 1 and 12.

Insight Vacations Tour Itinerary

Day: 1 Arrive Lima, Peru
On arrival at Lima International Airport, you will be met and transferred to your luxurious hotel in Miraflores, Lima's most prestigious address. At 19:00 join your Travelling Concierge for a warm and friendly Welcome Reception and an opportunity to meet with your fellow travellers over drinks and a light meal at Nos, Chef Virgilio Martinez's newest restaurant in Lima.(WD)
Day: 2 Lima, 'City of the Kings'
(Relaxed Start) Experience Lima through the eyes of a Local Expert as you are introduced to the beautiful 'City of Kings'. Explore the UNESCO listed Historic Centre of Lima; view the imposing cathedral, and visit the San Francisco Monastery with its shadowy catacombs lined with skulls and bones. A Highlight Lunch is included in the trendy, bohemian district of Barranco at one of Lima's most up-and-coming restaurants, Amor Amar. Continue exploring Barranco and visit the workshop of Victor Delfin, one of the leading sculptors and painters in Peru, best known for his monumental El Beso, a large sculpture unveiled in 1993 in "Love Park" in the Miraflores district. Meet Victor and his wife—who was his muse for the sculpture—at his home. Then, over a hot chocolate or authentic café pasado, listen to an expert barista spill the beans on Peruvian coffee. As evening falls, the restaurant terrace at Huaca Pucllana overlooks the illuminated ruins of a 1500-year-old pre-Inca pyramid. In contrast, the cuisine at the evening's Highlight Dinner is 'new Andean', exquisitely executed by one of the capital's celebrated chefs.(FB / HL / HD)
Day: 3 Lima and on to the Sacred Valley
Board your flight for Cusco and drive to Peru's Sacred Valley. Stretching between the old Inca capital of Cusco and the legendary city of Machu Picchu, this was the fertile homeland of the Inca Empire. Visit the colourful Sunday market in the town of Chinchero, one of the most traditional markets in all of South America, where you'll be surrounded by locals in their traditional dress, buying and selling their wares. Then, meet Nilda Callañaupa Alvarez, a Quechua and scholar, president of the Centre for Traditional Textiles of Cusco and recipient of a TreadRight Foundation grant. Enjoy lunch with Nilda and learn about her mission to preserve traditional weaving techniques and why weaving in Peru is much more than just an art form. View weavers at work, learn about weaving patterns and Andean beliefs. Later, check into your luxurious resort and relax before dinner at your hotel.(FB / L / D)
Day: 4 Exploring the Sacred Valley
(Relaxed Start) Enjoy a leisurely breakfast before heading to the little town of Maras to meet with a local family, giving you the unique opportunity to learn the local arts and crafts of the region. View the spectacular terraced salt pans dating back to Inca times, a patchwork landscape of pinks, tans and browns. Families have passed down caring for these salt pans for generations and today maintain them in much the same way they did long ago. Experience the ways in which they care for the salt pans and how their way of life depends on this tradition. In Moray, view the Incan ruins of circular terraces said to have been used for agricultural experiments. Experience a typical, trendy Peruvian meal, a caja china lunch of fresh vegetables and slow-roasted meats, all cooked in a wooden box. After lunch, witness a private Pachamama Ceremony, or 'Payment to the Earth', as a local shaman performs a centuries-old ritual of expressing reverence to the Earth as a source of life. The rest of the day is yours to enjoy your resort's facilities.(FB / L)
Day: 5 Journey to Machu Picchu
Start the day with a visit to the town of Ollantaytambo, a National Archeological Site. Settle in to the panoramic viewing cars of the Vistadome train for the scenic journey to Machu Picchu, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Lunch is included upon arrival at your resort, reminiscent of an ancient Andean village. Explore nature trails winding past waterfalls and gardens as your Local Expert explains the fascinating cloud forest ecosystem. Discover a working tea plantation and the world's largest private collection of indigenous orchids. In the evening, learn how to blend the perfect pisco sour before enjoying dinner at the hotel.(FB / L / D)
Day: 6 Mysterious Machu Picchu
This entire day is free for you to discover the incredible UNESCO World Heritage Site of Machu Picchu, recently named one of the 'New Seven Wonders of the World'. Meet your Local Expert for a walk through the enigmatic 'Lost City of the Incas'. Learn about its history and the people who once lived there as you explore the site. Witness the great Temple of the Sun, Sacred Plaza and the intricately carved Intihuatana, believed to be an ancient sun clock. After an included lunch at the Sanctuary Lodge, there is more time to explore the archaeological site at your own pace, or perhaps visit the local town and browse its market before dinner.(FB / L / D)
Day: 7 Return to Cusco
(Relaxed Start) Return by train to the Sacred Valley and tantalise your taste buds with a Highlight Lunch at a Pachamanca Feast, a traditional Peruvian meal cooked underground. At a local camelid farm, get up close and personal with llamas, guanacos, alpacas and even the rare and precious vicuña, known for their soft and highly prized wool. Arrive at your stylish hotel, only steps away from the Plaza de Armas. Built atop ancient Incan ruins and situated around a 16th century convent, your hotel is a veritable museum in the historic city of Cusco.(FB / HL)
Day: 8 Colonial Cusco
Join a Local Expert to explore Cusco and its surroundings. Visit the Temple of the Sun at Korikancha and the formidable citadel of Sacsayhuaman, made of gigantic boulders, and the city cathedral. Visit the local market where you can practice your bartering skills. Set out for San Blas, Cusco's artisan centre, where you visit an unusual candle shop and learn about its importance to the locals. After, enjoy some free time on the Plaza de Armas for shopping. In the evening, enjoy a candlelit Highlight Dinner at the reputed MAP restaurant.(FB / HD)
Day: 9 Lake Region of Peru
(Relaxed Start) After departing Cusco in the morning, board your included flight to Juliaca before a drive to Puno, situated on the edge of the majestic waters of Lake Titicaca. Arrive on Esteves Island and your lakeside hotel.(FB / L / D)
Day: 10 The Floating Islands of Lake Titicaca
Cruise Lake Titicaca, the most sacred lake in the world of the Incas, to the famous floating islands of Uros. Here the local people bundle reeds from the lake to build floating platforms, houses and canoes. Learn about their lifestyle and customs before continuing to the island of Amantani, known for its weaving, stone carvings and gorgeous landscape. Enjoy lunch hosted by local restaurateur, Gladys Quispe Yanarico at Samari. After, there is time to explore or purchase local handicrafts before returning to Puno where you can relax until dinner.(FB / L / D)
Day: 11 Puno, Back to Lima
(Relaxed Start) Head out to Sillustani on the shores of Lake Umayo, where the ancient Colla people interred their kings and nobility in enigmatic 'chullpas' or funerary towers. After exploring these impressive burial grounds, enjoy a scenic drive back to Juliaca for your flight to Lima. As the sun sets, be treated to a sensational seaside Celebration Dinner at CALA where pisco sours are the cocktail of choice. With the waves crashing beneath you, savour an inventive selection of Peruvian nouvelle cuisine, with an emphasis on fresh seafood.(FB / L / CD)
Day: 12 Depart Lima
Your Peruvian adventure draws to a close today. A departure transfer to Lima airport is included.(FB)

Available Room Types: Single, Twin, Triple

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Guaranteed Departure 10/28/2017 $4,585.00
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