Region Overviews: Peru Travel Guide: Overview
From the Amazon jungle to the to the Pacific Ocean, Peru is extraordinarily diverse. In fact, few places on this planet can claim the geographical variety of Peru.
Standing above Machu Picchu, wispy clouds floating by, the jagged Andes in the background, you'll snap the photo. But actually being there—it will forever reset your view of humanity. How did they do it? There are few places on Earth like this. And to think, it's only one moment in a week's worth of incredible moments.
THIS ITINERARY: 8 days, 7 nights
ACCOMMODATIONS: Premiere Hotels
Start/End locations may vary. Do not book flights until your trip details are confirmed.
Stroll through Cusco, once the center of the pre-Columbian Inca Empire | Explore Coricancha, a Spanish colonial church built atop the ruins of an Inca temple | Our local guide joins us as we journey through the Temple of the Moon and Sacsayhuamán | Browse the local markets and shop for handicrafts, plus check out the action in the Plaza de Armas | Discover the superb collection at Cusco's Museum of Pre-Columbian Art.
This luxurious property, a former palace set in a tranquil plaza behind Cusco's main square, offers personal butler service and is home to the city's first outdoor pool. Travel + Leisure World's Best. (pool, spa)
Walk through the magical hilltop ruins of Pisac, site of the largest known Inca cemetery | Learn about traditional Cusco Giant white corn farming techniques the owners of exclusive Hacienda Sarapampa have implemented for three generations | Bike through the Sacred Valley amid a panorama of snowy peaks and traditional villages | Engage with Quechua culture in a community famous for its master weavers | Visit the world-renowned ceramics studio of Pablo Seminario | Pedal in the altiplano through ancient Inca farmland and high-altitude terraces | Sit down for a private farm-to-table lunch in the home of a local family | Explore Las Salineras, a stunningly beautiful honeycomb of tiered pools | Join an exclusive cooking class with a local chef.
Situated in the heart of the picturesque Urubamba Valley, this contemporary hotel is inspired by colonial design and local cultural history. (spa)
Take in the incredible ruins of Machu Picchu—an Incan retreat built in the 15th-century | Take a train to begin our hike on the Gate of the Sun trail where we'll find a bird's-eye view of Machu Picchu (you may have the option to take the famed Inca Trail) | Spend a second day exploring more corners of famous Machu Picchu, joined by a local expert.
This hotel with Andean-style casitas is just minutes from the ruins of Machu Picchu. Travel + Leisure World's Best. (pool, spa)
The earlier you book, the more choice you'll have and the lower your price. And you can always change your mind — you won't be charged to transfer to a different trip before your final payment is due. View cancellation policy
Click on dates for pricing, itinerary variations and to book your trip. Price is per person, double occupancy.
Every Backroads trip is designed to appeal to a wide variety of interests and fitness levels. We know your pace may vary from one day to the next—and your traveling companion's may differ somewhat from yours. So we present a range of mileage options, and each day you decide exactly what and how much you want to do. LEARN MORE.
Note: The biking terrain we encounter on this trip is moderately rolling with some steeper sections. Our bike routes are mainly on dirt and a few paved roads, some more rocky and rough than others. Please note that you'll be on mountain bikes and the riding conditions can change with the weather—in dry years the terrain can be dusty, whereas rainy conditions lead to muddy trails.Our walking and hiking routes are a mix of village and archeological site walks and Inca stone jungle and rugged mountain trails.Activities take place at elevations between 8,000–12,000 feet, which can make the routes feel more challenging than the mileage may suggest, so we accommodated for this by bumping up the route rating on some days by one level. Additionally, some of the hiking routes involve substantial elevation loss which can also add to the perceived difficulty.
We want to make sure you're on the right trip and that you have the best experience possible. Every Backroads trip is unique and this one is no exception.
One of our hikes requires an Inca Trail permit that Backroads will obtain on your behalf (included in your trip price). Therefore, we recommend booking your trip at least 7-9 months prior to departure to have the best chance of securing your permit. Without it, you will miss this portion of the Trail but will still visit Machu Picchu with an alternate hike within the ruins. Also, due to national park regulations and difficulty securing permits, your Backroads leaders may not be able to accompany you along the hike requiring an Inca Trail permit. If they're unable to join you, rest assured you will always be well supported by our local Peruvian guide, who we've worked with for years, and a staff of porters.
Our hikes through Peru's captivating rugged terrain climb rocky and sometimes uneven paths, many of which are remote and do not intersect with roads. Vehicles will get us to and from the trailheads, but the nature of these trails is such that we won't see our vans along the route. Ample trail support in the form of water, snacks and encouragement is provided by your Backroads leaders and local guides.
This trip has been designed to offer as many hiking options as possible. Since many of the trails are unmarked, we recommend that you hike with the company of a Backroads leader or one of our local support staff. On the few days when we're in national parks, regulations require you to hike in the company of one of our certified park guides.