Phone: (607) 756-8676
Our Experience, Your Discoveries
We want to show you the world, and to have you truly inspired by it - exploring its breathtaking diversity. Our enthusiasm is stronger than ever to reach out and expand your horizons.
We hope you accept this invitation and join us on one of our journeys so that our experience becomes one of your many discoveries.
Journey to Peru
Travel to Cusco, and walk the ancient pathways through the ruins of Machu Picchu. Your guide’s knowledge of mountains, the language, and the people enable you to visit Andean villages where life has not really changed for hundreds of years. Every day will be a peak experience, such as when the storm clouds part at Machu Picchu, letting the sun rays stream through, or discovering the passageways and mysterious Inca stonework of Sachsayhuaman near Cusco. Meet shamans, healers, herders, farmers and weavers, all in remote areas of the Andes.
Days 1 - 2: Home - Cusco
Today is a day of travel and rest, to let your body acclimate to the altitude, which is 11,000 feet above sea level. A suggested flight schedule from the U.S. will be given to allow for assistance in Lima airport, connecting with flights to Cusco. Upon arrival in Cusco, you will be transferred to the hotel, where you can rest and prepare for the program. (several flights from the U.S. are overnight flights)
Day 3: Cusco
Cusco was the capital of the Incas, the cultural and religious focus of the empire. Impressive walls were sheathed in gold and built from fine dressed stone. It was designed with an infrastructure of channels providing water, making it cleaner and healthier than any European City of its time. It is said that Inca Pachacutec designed the city to look like a Puma, the Incas’ sacred animal. The river Tullumayo formed the spine, the river Huatanay the belly, and the fortress or temple of Sacsayhuaman made the head. Cusco had been overshadowed by the growth of Lima. With the rebirth of interest in the ancient civilizations of Peru and the discovery of Machu Picchu in 1911, Cusco re-emerged as one of Peru’s principal cities.
Your introductory tour begins in Cusco, including lunch in a traditional Peruvian restaurant, after which you will enjoy a guided walk around the main square of Cusco (Plaza de Armas). (b, l, d)
Day 4: Cusco
After breakfast this morning enjoy a tour of Sacsayhuaman, catching the shapes and shadows of stone in the early morning light. It is said that Pachacutec, the Inca ruler who built this fortress, employed 20,000 men for over fifty years. It was topped by three towers, and riddled with tunnels, concentric rings forming the foundation. Opposite is a mound, Inca’s throne, where high-ranking persons supervised sacred ceremonies.
After lunch visit San Pedro market, witnessing an incredible variety of food, flowers, and medicinal plants for sale to the local villagers, or view a demonstration at the local alpaca factory. The workers have chosen to keep their ancient way of life, and you will see their heritage in the intricate designs of animals, mountains, flowers, and the stars that are woven into brightly colored textiles. (b, l)
Day 5: Cusco - The Sacred Valley
Visit the Coricancha (Temple of the Sun) today, the center of Incan Religion. It was lavishly decorated, even by the standards of ancient Cusco, consisting of a number of chapels dedicated to different deities: the Rainbow, Thunder, and, of course, the Sun himself. The surviving walls represent the finest Inca stonework in existence. Outside the temple was the garden, in which the Incas displayed some of the most astounding of their gold work. It was filled with life-sized gold and silver statues of plants, birds, various animals, butterflies, snakes, and lizards. While within, lie the tombs of Incan leaders, who held court on golden thrones. Today, overlaid with a thin European veneer, it has become the Santo Domingo Church.
Later this morning set out into the Sacred Valley (Urubamba) of the Inca. From the mountains enjoy breathtaking views. You will make your way towards Ollantaytambo, a fortress and town, which defended Cusco from intrusions from the jungle tribes to the north. It stands at the end of a gentle valley, which leads down from the Andes to the Amazon. Wander the narrow cobblestone streets of the village for a glimpse of everyday life in the Andes, and then climb the steep stone steps to one of the most elegant and magnificent remains of the Incan dynasty, Ollantaytambo. Huge terraces lead up to the site, which is crowned by seven massive monoliths of pink granite traced with mysterious carvings. Spend the night at a once beautiful hacienda, set on lovely grounds; it has been renovated into a comfortable hotel with gardens. (b, d)
Day 6: Pisac
The ruins at Pisac are perhaps the best example of the Incas stonemasonry, although not less impressive are spectacular views of the surrounding valley and its extensive terracing. The hilltop Inca citadel lies high above the village on a triangular plateau with a plunging gorge on either side. Pisac is famous for its agricultural terracing, which sweeps around the south and east flanks of the mountain in huge and graceful curves. The citadel was built to guard the Urubamba valley and a jungle pass to the northeast. Those feeling adventurous can enjoy an hour hike amidst the ruins. After the visit to the ruins, stop in the picturesque Andean village of Pisac, best known for its market. (b, d)
Days 7 - 8: Machu Picchu
Travel back to Ollentaytambo, where you board a train, and follow the valley along the rushing river strewn with polished stones. Once reaching the ancient peak, you will have a guided tour of the ruins to hear of its wonders and learn some of the theories.
For many, the words Machu Picchu conjure up an image of a lost Inca city, swathed in the green creepers of an encroaching jungle, hidden behind the years, waiting for someone to come across this ancient peak. Rediscovered by Hiram Bingham in 1911, Machu Picchu was unknown to the Spaniards. Its reason for existence remains under debate. Some argue it was built and populated by the family of one Inca ruler, Pachacutec; while others have proposed the principal function was to maintain a reliable supply of coca leaves for the priests and royals of Cusco. Bingham fostered the school of thought that the city existed primarily for strategic and defensive purposes, but other findings support the hypothesis that it was a university where children of other Andean cultures, conquered by the Incas, were educated. This is truly one of the most mysterious and compelling places on earth. All that remains are silent stones, their tantalizing clues such as a beautifully sculptured rock that might have been used to trace the path of the sun, carved to follow the outlines of the peaks rising behind them, and paving stones with hollow depressions that might have mirrored the stars. Once you have seen it, you will be unable to resist speculations at the impenetrable mystery of these silent stones. (b, d)
Today you will have another full day to explore Machu Picchu (Ancient Peak) at your own pace. Walking the ancient pathways through the ruins, perhaps ascend Huayna Picchu (Young Peak) for a different perspective on Machu Picchu or pursue the Inca Trail to Intipunku, the Sun Gate. (b, l, d)
Day 9: Machu Picchu – Ollentaytambo - Cusco
Enjoy breakfast, and the resorts garden paths, or shopping with some of the many vendors prior to your return train route to Ollantaytambo. There your car will meet you and drive back to Cusco in time for your farewell dinner. (b, d)
Day 10: Cusco – Lima - Home
Take a return flight to Lima. The majority of U.S. flights depart Lima in the late evening, arriving in the U.S. on Day 11. Optional day rooms can be provided at the airport hotel, or take a city tour of Lima, before returning to the airport for flights home.(b)
Please note: If you are unable to obtain connecting flights to and from Cusco at appropriate times from your gateway city, it may be necessary to arrive early or stay an additional night. Contact us for details. You will need to verify the appropriate times with Strabo Tours. If you do not obtain connecting flights from Lima/Cusco/Lima, we can book and invoice you when completed. Please note on your trip application form if you would like us to assist you with your airfare needs, a charge is added for this service. If making your own arrangements, it is important to discuss flight days with Strabo Tours before booking any airline tickets. This will avoid you having to pay airline cancellation penalties.
FITNESS AND HEALTH
Tour land cost: $0 US Dollars based upon minimum of 2 paying participants. All our program prices are based on double occupancy unless noted in exceptions.
Single room supplement: Please contact us for more details about the single room supplement. We try to accommodate travelers who request single accommodations, as well as travelers who are looking for a roommate. If a single room is requested, or if we are unable to find a suitable roommate, you will be required to pay the supplement.
Note: The land costs on international tours is based upon current exchange rates. Although the rate has been relatively stable, should it change, there may need to be an adjustment in the land cost.
Deposits, Cancellations and Refunds
A deposit of $750 ($500 on domestic programs) per person is required. Specific tours may require an additional deposit due to accommodation bookings or transportation requirements. If applicable these will be noted on your invoice. Payment in full is required when bookings are made less than 120 days before the departure date. Space is subject to cancellation by Strabo if payment is not received when due.
Group transportation for tour events in the tour van.
Domestic or International air fare; other airfare if noted in exceptions; air fare tax; airport departure tax; airport transfers; additional transfers or accommodations that may be required by those not traveling with the group; excess baggage charges; meals not included in itinerary; activities listed as optional, or those taken on your own; passport/visa expenses; personal medical or travel insurance; any expenses of a personal nature, such as room service, laundry, beverages not included with meals, medical expenses, film or processing, any activities not specified in tour itinerary or listed as optional, or any items not listed in what is included; upon the completion of your trip, modest gratuities to the local guides and the drivers are customary; tips for meals not included in itinerary.
Please note on your trip application form if you would like us to assist you with your airfare needs, a charge is added for this service. If making your own arrangements, it is important to discuss flight times with Strabo Tours before booking any airline tickets. This will avoid you having to pay airline cancellation penalties.
Please contact Strabo Tours for destination airfare estimates, specific flight time arrivals, and departures.
Fitness and Health
If you have any special needs or any physical condition that you feel might prevent you from fully participating, please contact Strabo Tours with your concerns (607-756-8676).
You should also be aware that medical services or facilities might not be readily available during all or part of your trip. This could include emergency medical care, presence of physicians, or adequate medication.
Each participant must be covered by medical insurance that is valid overseas.
Travel insurance helps to minimize the risk of monetary losses you would incur in the event of a delay of your departure due to weather, airline strike, missed connection, etc., your inability to travel for reasons such as illness, injury, unforeseen financial complications and other personal circumstances, or if you were required to cut your trip short for medical or any other reasons.
There are restrictions and limitations on any insurance program. For this reason, please read carefully the enclosed pamphlet, which outlines their program of trip cancellation, baggage, and medical insurance. Trained agents are available to answer your questions, so don’t hesitate to call the toll free number in their brochure. It is to your advantage to apply for insurance at the earliest possible time, so don’t delay in making a decision.
Subject to Change
This itinerary has been carefully constructed to assure participants the best this destination has to offer; however, should events arise that are beyond our control, activities and hotel arrangements are subject to change without notice. Above is a summary of typical areas you will explore. Since there is no possible way to visit all of them, your guides will plan each day considering the interests of the group and the weather at hand. Be assured that we will make substitutions that are as similar in quality and interest as possible.