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.
Machu Picchu has a gravitational pull. It urges you to hike in Cusco at 11,000 feet. Investigate the ruins of Sacsayhuamán, Stonehenge of the Andes. Make friends with children who live in hidden weaving Quechua communities. Climb terraced mountainsides. Stand above it all at Machu Picchu's mystical Gate of the Sun and testify to the resilience of humanity.
THIS ITINERARY: 7 days, 6 nights
ACCOMMODATIONS: Premiere Hotels
Start/End locations may vary. Do not book flights until your trip details are confirmed.
Enjoy a private farm-to-table lunch in the home of a local family in the Maras Valley | Explore the Inca salt pans’ beautiful honeycomb of pools above the Urubamba River Valley | Visit a weaving community tucked in the hills | In peaceful Ollantaytambo, climb the ruins of an Inca fortress and walk along the terraced valley | Shop for ceramics crafted using traditional Inca techniques at the Seminario Studio in Urubamba | Enjoy our exclusive cooking demonstration with a local chef.
"An unpretentious but impeccably maintained lodge set in a wonderful garden surrounded by mountains," according to the Hideaway Report. A Relais & Châteaux member. (pool, spa)
Experience the 15th-century Inca retreat of Machu Picchu with its intricate stonework and mysterious religious designs | Hike on the Inca Trail, lined with ancient stones and stairs, to reach the Gate of the Sun and your first view of Machu Picchu | Spend a second day exploring the incredible site with a local expert | Stroll the grounds of our hotel with a local naturalist to learn more about the area's flora and fauna.
This hotel with Andean-style casitas is just minutes from the ruins of Machu Picchu. Travel + Leisure World's Best. (pool, spa)
Joined by a local guide, explore Cusco's historic center to learn how it was the heart of the pre-Columbian Inca Empire | Following narrow streets lined with centuries-old walls, discover the grand main cathedral and a Spanish colonial church built atop the ruins of an Inca temple | Our expert guide leads us on a discovery of some of South America's most impressive sites—Sacsayhuamán, the historic capital of the Inca Empire | Pay a visit to Cusco's Museum of Pre-Columbian Art | Sip a pisco sour, Peru's famous national drink | Take a walk to people-watch at buzzing Plaza de Armas.
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)
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 terrain on this trip includes walking and hiking routes with a mix of village and archaeological site walks, 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 have bumped up the route rating by one level to account for this. Some of the routes involve substantial elevation loss, which can also add to the perceived difficulty of the walks.
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 in 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 accompanied by one of our certified park guides.