Essential Peru & Machu Picchu

The classic route to Peru's most popular highlights

Destinations Duration Approx. 6 days
Destinations Destinations Machu Picchu, Lima, Cusco, Sacred Valley
Activity Activity Nature & Wildlife, Culture & History, Luxury, Family

The classic itinerary to Peru's absolute top highlights. Starting in Lima head to the southern Andes to visit the ancient capital and Inca stronghold of Cusco, followed by a night or two exploring the glorious Sacred Valley. From here round off the trip with a guided tour of Machu Picchu itself. There's no denying that this is a well-trodden route, but with the help of a quality tour operator with intimate local expertise it's still easy to get off the beaten path for a view of Peru's indigenous cultural heritage. If you've got time to extend your trip you can get truly off the beaten path with a visit to some of Peru's lesser-known archaeological sites, the Amazon rain forest, or simply spend a little longer in Lima and Cusco for a better insight into contemporary Peru, its fascinating culture and world-beating cuisine.

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Machu Picchu & Amazon Cruise

Small-ship luxury cruise with Machu Picchu

Destinations Duration Approx. 9 days
Destinations Destinations Machu Picchu, Lima, Cusco, Sacred Valley, Iquitos
Activity Activity Adventure, Cruise, Nature & Wildlife, Culture & History, Luxury, Family, Photography, Birdwatching

The northern Amazon is very different to the more popular Puerto Maldonado in the south. Located closer to the Amazon River, this is a watery wonderland best explored by a small-ship river cruise. Cruises depart from Iquitos for a three-night voyage to the remote Pacaya Samiria National Park. On the way you'll take guided excursions into the jungle to spot its myriad wildlife, kayak the tributaries, fish and swim in the mighty Amazon River. After your rainforest adventure you'll head south via Lima and up into the Peruvian Andes to visit historical Cusco, the glorious Sacred Valley and, the cherry on the cake, the world-famous ruins of Machu Picchu.

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Machu Picchu & Andean Highlights

A grand tour of Peru's mountain civilisation

Destinations Duration Approx. 12 days
Destinations Destinations Machu Picchu, Lima, Lake Titicaca, Cusco, Sacred Valley, Arequipa, Colca Canyon
Activity Activity Nature & Wildlife, Culture & History, Luxury, Family

This popular route covers the best of Peru's southern highlands, a region of remarkable natural and historical heritage. Starting from Lima you'll head south to Arequipa, Peru's elegant second city and gateway to the Colca Canyon. From here you'll travel to Puno, on the shores of Lake Titicaca, the highest navigable lake on earth and cradle of the Aymara pre-Colombian cultures. Finish the epic trip in the Sacred Valley, exploring Cusco and, of course, Machu Picchu.

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Machu Picchu & Southern Amazon

See Peru from rainforest eco-lodge to mountain empires

Destinations Duration Approx. 9 days
Destinations Destinations Machu Picchu, Lima, Cusco, Sacred Valley, Puerto Maldonado
Activity Activity Adventure, Nature & Wildlife, Culture & History, Luxury, Family, Photography

Combine Peru's two finest gems in one trip: the biodiverse wonderland of Puerto Maldonado in the southern Amazon basin, and the incredible cultural heritage of Machu Picchu and the Sacred Valley. Start your trip in Lima before heading to a remote jungle lodge to explore the rainforest with expert guides, before arriving up into the high Andes to marvel at Machu Picchu, historical Cusco and the many ruins of the beautiful Sacred Valley.

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Qhapaq ñan: Great Inca Trail to Huanuco Pampa

Lima | Huaraz | Soledad de Tambo | Quenuajirca | Tambo Grande | San Lorenzo de Isco | Huánuco Pampa

Destinations Duration Approx. 8 days
Destinations Destinations Lima, Huaraz
Activity Activity Adventure, Nature & Wildlife, Culture & History, Family, Trekking, Photography

Take the adventure of a lifetime hiking a pristine section of the Great Inca Trail, a 25,000-mile road network widely regarded as one of the world’s greatest engineering marvels. For five days you’ll traverse a remote, rugged and spectacular swath of Peru’s Northern Andes that very few tourists have ever visited. Follow in the footsteps of the Incas — treading their great road, camping at ancient refuges and relying on llamas to carry your luggage — under the watchful guidance of an experienced local guide, chef and porters.

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Active Sacred Valley to Machu Picchu

Lima | Cusco | Sacred Valley | Choquechaca | Machu Picchu

Destinations Duration Approx. 8 days
Destinations Destinations Machu Picchu, Lima, Cusco
Activity Activity Adventure, Nature & Wildlife, Culture & History, Family, Trekking, Hiking

This unique route is ideal for travellers who want to get their blood pumping while seeing the glorious historical sights the Sacred Valley has to offer. You will travel by horseback to visit the remote indigenous community of Choquechaca. Learn about their ancient weaving traditions, enjoy a freshly prepared mountainside lunch, and explore the ruins of Pumamarca, before heading on to tour Machu Picchu and Cusco in style.

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Why Horizon Guides?

Expert travel guides

Our guides are written by the leading experts in their destinations. We never take payment for positive coverage so you can count on us for reliable and impartial travel advice.

Authentic experiences

We curate exceptional trips in underrated places, organised by the very best tour operators who live and breathe their destinations and are passionate about authentic, responsible tourism.

Give back to mother nature

We'll plant 50 trees for every trip booked via the Horizon Guides site in partnership with the International Tree Foundation, who carry out sustainable community forestry projects in Africa.