Road Scholar : Home
Peru and Bolivia: Machu Picchu and Beyond

Program Number: 19210RJ
Start and End Dates:
10/3/2013 - 10/16/2013; 6/12/2014 - 6/25/2014; 9/11/2014 - 9/24/2014; 10/2/2014 - 10/15/2014;
Duration: 13 nights
Location: Peru/Bolivia
Price starting at: $3,456.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type:
Meals: 31; 11 Breakfasts, 11 Lunches, 9 Dinners    
Meal Options: Vegetarian; Gluten Free    

Unearth the treasures of two of South America’s most fascinating countries, Peru and Bolivia, from “The Lost City of the Incas” and the pre-Incan ruins of Tiwanaku to mountain-ringed Lake Titicaca and the historic cities of Cusco and La Paz. Venture off the beaten path to witness local culture, daily life and ageless traditions as they unfold before you.




Highlights

• At the extraordinary ancient city of Machu Picchu, examine the remarkably well-preserved ruins of palaces, baths, temples and some 150 houses.
• Discover the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Tiwanaku, the spiritual and political center of the Tiwanaku people, a precursor of the Incas.
• Learn about the blending of Catholicism and Andean religions at rarely-visited churches in rural Andean communities.



Activity Particulars

Walking up to two miles per day; uneven and hilly terrain. Elevations of 12,500 feet.




Date Specific Information

10-3-2013, 6-12-2014, 9-11-2014, 10-2-2014

Enjoy the latest in hearing technology — listening devices — on this date.



Itinerary Summary

Arrival Cusco (Peru); coach to Urubamba Valley, 3 nights; coach to Cusco, 3 nights; coach to Puno, 1 night; coach to Copacabana (Bolivia), hydrofoil boat to Huatajata Island, 2 nights; coach to La Paz, 2 nights; Departures, overnight flight.



Overnight flight from the U.S.A.
1 night
Arrival Cusco (Peru)
Coach to Urubamba Valley
3 nights

Explore the Incan fortress and city of Ollantaytambo, one of the few cities that still maintain the Incan system of urban planning. Sample authentic Andean cuisine during a dinner at a private residence. Board the Vista Dome train to experience the wonders and history of Machu Picchu, a sacred ceremonial city of the Incas.



Coach to Cusco
3 nights

Get a first-hand look at two projects that support indigenous agriculture and textile production. Expert-led walking excursions in Cusco include the La Almudena Cemetery and San Pedro market. Take a field trip to Sacsayhuaman, former capital of the Inca empire and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Learn about the blending of Catholicism and traditional Andean religions at Cusco Cathedral and churches rarely visited by outsiders.



Coach to Puno
1 night
Coach to Copacabana (Bolivia)
Boat to Huatajata Island
2 nights

Discover some of the jewels of rural Andes including the chapel of Andahuaylas, the Inca archaeological site of Raqchi and the amazing pre-Incan burial ground of Sillustani. Cross into Bolivia to visit the Copacabana Cathedral. Embark on a hydrofoil adventure on Lake Titicaca, going ashore on the Sun Island and the Moon Island, both extremely important in the religion of the Incas. Learn more at the Andean Roots Eco-Village on Huatajata Island and visit the ancient necropolis on Kalauta Island.



Coach to La Paz
2 nights
Departures
Overnight flight
1 night

With a local expert, explore the Tiwanaku ruins to learn about one of the oldest civilizations in the Americas. Experience the old colonial city of La Paz and visit the Indian market and the Witches’ Market.




Accommodations
Urubamba Valley: Mountain chalet-style retreat with panoramic Andes views. Cusco: Hotel in the center of Cusco on the Plaza de Armas. Puno: Waterfront hotel on Lake Titicaca. Huatajata Island: Island eco-resort on Lake Titicaca. La Paz: Modern city center hotel.

Road Scholar Instructors
These instructors are participating on at least one date of this program. Please note that changes may occur.
Jean-Jacques Decoster

Jean-Jacques Decoster is a preeminent scholar and expert on the cultural anthropology, ethnology and ethnohistory of the Andes. Born in France, he studied in his native country and the U.S. before relocating to Peru, where he is now professor of Inca history and Colonial history at the Universidad National San Antonio Abad del Cusco. Jean-Jacques’s areas of study include the relationship between native groups and their environment and bilingual education in rural indigenous communities.
 
Meals and Lodgings
   Casa Andina Private Collection Valle Sagrado
  Urumbamba Valley (Sacred Valley), Peru 3 nights
   Casa Andina Classic-Cusco Plaza
  Cuzco, Peru 3 nights
   Casa Andina Private Collection Puno
  Puno (Lake Titicaca), Peru 1 night
   Inca Utama Hotel and Spa
  Huatajata Island (Lake Titicaca), Bolivia 2 nights
   Hotel Europa
  La Paz, Bolivia 2 nights
 Casa Andina Private Collection Valle Sagrado
Type: Four-Star Hotel
  Description: The Sacred Valley’s most complete hotel: a mountain chalet-styled retreat with panoramic Andes views from every room and every angle. On more than 8 landscaped acres (3 hectares), it breathes an air of tranquility and relaxation. Unique among Sacred Valley hotels – most of which remain isolated in the valley, offering precious little for guests to do – it contains an extraordinary, full-service “Sacred Spa”, a domed Planetarium & Observatory for stargazing in the massive Southern Hemisphere sky, and gourmet restaurant and bar. The 85 inviting, spacious rooms overlook the property’s extensive gardens and feature either private balconies or sunny sitting areas. Equidistant between Urubamba and Ollantaytambo, in the Sacred Valley of Cusco, the hotel is perfectly positioned for easy access to the valley’s abundant attractions and incomparable Inca ruins, including world-renowned Machu Picchu.
  Contact info: 5to Paradero
Yanahuara,   Peru
phone: +5184984765501
web: www.casa-andina.com/peru/hotels/valle-sagrado-hotels/valle-sagrado-hotels.php
  Room amenities: Very ample (32 m² / 339 sq. ft), elegantly rustic, with thick white stone walls and wood-beam ceilings. Feature Queen or King beds and either balconies or a separate breakfast/sitting area, as well as carpeted or parquet wood floors & warm down bedding. Hair dryer available in room.
  Facility amenities: Full-service Andean-style Sacred Spa, with native treatments Planetarium and Observatory with expert-guided shows & stargazing, Gourmet restaurant featuring local produce & ingredients, Andean specialties, wine & cocktail service, Bar, billiards/game room & TV lounge, Corporate and group meeting facilities & banquet room (180-person capacity), Children playground, Free Wi-Fi Internet access throughout hotel, Internet Centers with free high-speed Internet access, Room service, Usanzas handicrafts & gift shop, Ilaria and Aldo & Co jewelry shops, Miski alpaca goods shop, Crafts & textiles exhibition/market featuring local artisans, Laundry service, Globalnet ATM machine, Taxi service (to Cusco & Valley points of interest), Front desk available 24/7, No pets allowed.
  Smoking allowed: Yes
  Additional nights prior: Based on Availability Additional nights are available on request. Please contact Road Scholar Travel Services after you enroll.

 Casa Andina Classic-Cusco Plaza
Type: Full Service Hotel
  Description: Perfectly convenient: under the colonial arcades of stately Plaza Regocijo & around the corner from Cusco’s beautiful Plaza de Armas. Guests of this hotel can’t get much closer to the restaurants, bars, and shops that mark the Plaza de Armas of Cusco. The hotel is a 10-minute taxi ride from the Cusco airport and 5-minute taxi from Cusco’s train & bus stations.
  Contact info: Portal E Spinar 142
Cusco,   Peru
phone: +51 84 23 1733
web: www.casa-andina.com/peru/hotels/cusco-hotels/classic-cusco-plaza/hotel.php
  Room amenities: In room safe, cable TV, Free high speed wi-fi internet access, direct dial telephone, hairdryer
  Facility amenities: Restaurant, oxygen available upon request at the reception desk, free high-speed Wi-Fi Internet access throughout hotel,small Internet Centers with free high-speed Internet access, ATM machine, laundry service, foreign currency exchange,
  Smoking allowed: Yes
  Elevators available: Yes

 Casa Andina Private Collection Puno
Type: Four-Star Hotel
  Description: Perched at water’s edge and taking full advantage of its privileged location on the Puno area of Lake Titicaca, with extraordinary views 3,800m (12,500 ft) above sea level. A majority of the hotel’s 46 rooms boast unparalleled lake views; the hotel’s gourmet restaurant is enclosed by a glass wall framing the lake and gardens; and a large, sunny terrace invites guests to contemplate Lake Titicaca’s seemingly endless expanse. Unique among Puno hotels, oxygen is available in all rooms (a bonus for guests having difficulty adapting to the high altitude). Inviting rather than imposing, the hotel — which has its own private train station stop, for guests coming from or traveling to Cusco — is a reflection of its altiplano location. It is built with rustic local materials, including stone, wood and clay tiles, while stone fireplaces warm the lobby lounge and restaurant. With Lake Titicaca the premier draw, guests can set off to explore its unique islands — the floating Uros, Taquile and Amantaní, as well as the remote ecolodge, a splendid getaway on private Isla Suasi—right from the hotel’s long private pier extending over the lake. All accommodations are Superior rooms, except for the large Suite. Most rooms have expansive lake views, and in the newest wing, all rooms overlook both gardens and Lake Titicaca. Alone among Puno / Titicaca hotels, oxygen is available in every room.
  Contact info: Av.Sesqui Centenario 1970
Puno,   Peru
phone: +5151363992
web: www.casa-andina.com/peru/hotels/puno-hotels/private-collection-puno/hotel.php
  Room amenities: Ample (25 m² / 269 sq. ft) rooms in the main building have full-size or King beds and are decorated in a sophisticated but rustic style, with views of the Andean high plateau. Hair dryer available in room.
  Facility amenities: • Gourmet restaurant with panoramic Lake Titicaca views and featuring local lake fish and Andean specialties, Oxygen available in rooms and suites, upon request, Lounge bar with large stone fireplace, Outdoor terrace/bar overlooking Lake Titicaca, Private pier (for boating excursions to Lake Titicaca islands), Private train stop (available for groups incoming from Cusco), Free computer & Wi-Fi Internet access throughout hotel, Internet Centers with free high-speed Internet access, Aldo & Co (one of Peru’s most prestigious jewelry stores), Globalnet ATM machine, Laundry service, Medical assistance, Taxi service, Parking, Front desk available 24/7, No pets allowed
  Smoking allowed: Yes

 Inca Utama Hotel and Spa
Type: Full Service Hotel
  Description: The Inca Utama Hotel and Spa started as a modest project in the early 90's and has grown into a tourism complex highlighting the Andean cultures. Today it is a 65 room room hotel devided into two buildings - the original low slung main building housing reception, an elevator and rooms, and the new high-rise Colonial towers with accommdations and its own elevator as well. There is a fully equipped spa complete with saunas, massage, hydrotherapy, mud and salt baths and other traditional natural medicine of the Andes treatments. The Sumaj Untavi Restaurant is one of the two restaurants of the complex, with nightly "Pena" folkloric presentations. The other restaurant is the new Choza Nautica, in a thatched roof building built out over the water and offering spectacular vistas of the lake. There is also a cozy bar-lounge complete with fireplace, over-stuffed chairs and couches and TV with educational video collection. One of the highlights is a visit to the multi-faceted Andean Roots Cultural Complex. PLEASE NOTE: While this is rated a 5 star hotel in Bolivia. Bolivian standards are not the same as regular Western Standards and cannot be judge accordingly, This would be more of a good 3 star. This is the best available in this location and offers warm, comfortable and welcoming sourroundings that must be experienced.
  Contact info: 86 Carretera Asfaltada
Lake Titicaca, Huatajata Island,   Bolivia
phone: +NA
  Room amenities: All rooms have absic ameneties: Private Bathrooms, Cable TV, Hairdryer, safe.
  Facility amenities: 24 Hour Reception, Air Conditioned, Bar / LoungeCurrency, Exchange, Hair Dryer, Laundry service, Restaurant, Room Service, Safe-Deposit Box, Sauna, Swimming pool, TV.
  Smoking allowed: Yes
  Elevators available: Yes

 Hotel Europa
Type: Full Service Hotel
  Description: Indulge in the creative services at Hotel Europa – a captivatingly comfortable Bolivia five-star hotel located in the heart of downtown La Paz. Gaze out at the snow-capped Illimani Mountain from your spacious guest room or suite. Enjoy the heated floor. Sleep soundly under a sumptuous feather duvet. A warm sense of renewal awaits you within our central La Paz luxury hotel. Relax along side the indoor pool. Soak in the Jacuzzi. Rejuvenate in the Turkish bath. Delight in our elegant hotel, offering unparalleled service and hospitality in a striking locale. 110 guestrooms including 10 suites, each designed for superior function and comfort, Internet, international direct dialing, large work area, under-floor heating, air-renewal and humidifying system, all rooms and bathrooms have windows to the exterior, feather duvets and pillows. PLEASE NOTE: Please note that while this hotel is rated 5 stars in Bolivia and is among the best hotels available in LaPaz. The hotel is well situated, clean, safe and comfortable and offers all the needed ameneties and receives good reviews for guest, however it is important to remember that it may not meet North American expectations for a hotel of this rating.
  Contact info: CALLE TIAHUANACO Nº 64,
La Paz,   Bolivia
phone: +591 2 2 31 56 56
web: www.summithotels.com/summit/hotels/index.aspx?id=41706
  Room amenities: each designed for superior function and comfort, Internet, international direct dialing, large work area, under-floor heating, air-renewal and humidifying system, all rooms and bathrooms have windows to the exterior, feather duvets and pillows.
  Facility amenities: Finn Club with indoor swimming pool, Jacuzzi, sauna, Turkish bath, fitness room and massage service, and health bar.
  Smoking allowed: Yes
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights after: Based on Availability Please contact Road Scholar Travel Services to make reservations for additional nights after the program ends. Rates are subject to availability at time of booking.


Travel Details
  Start of Program:
Program begins at the hotel in the Urumbamba Valley (Sacred Valley) on day 2 in Peru with the Orientation. You will be staying at Casa Andina Private Collection Valle Sagrado that night.
  End of Program:
Program ends after breakfast at the Hotel on day 13 in La Paz. You will be staying at Hotel Europa the night before.
  Required documents:
The Road Scholar Health & Safety Form is required. All passports must have 6 months validity and 3 blank Visa pages. No visas are required for US Citizens to enter Peru. A visa is required for US Citizens to enter Bolivia. Bolivia Departure tax is currently $25 (subject to change) and the Bolivian Visa is $135. Cash in U.S. dollars is preferred at these locations, and local authorities prefer to accept bills in excellent condition with no markings. Canadians are not required to secure visas for entry into Bolivia or Peru at this time. A yellow fever certificate or waiver is an official requirement for entry into Bolivia. Bolivian officials have not asked our participants to present yellow fever certificates yet, but they may start doing so at any time without notice. We strongly recommend getting a yellow fever certificate or waiver. Talk to your doctor or visit the CDC website for more details.
  Required innoculations:
Yes: The US State department and the CDC advises travelers that Yellow fever certificate or waiver is required to enter Bolivia. Bolivian authorities at land crossing have been lax in controlling this requirement, but we suggest travelers follow all official requirements to avoid delays and possible denied entry. In lieu of the Yellow fever certificate a medical waiver from your doctor is accepted but you must have the original waiver and a translation in Spanish ready to present to authorities.
  Parking availability:
Driving to this program is not recommended.
Transportation (For Independent Travelers)
  Train or bus availability: Taxi travel time to the Casa Andina Private Collection Sacred Valley near Urubamba will exceed one hour and can be arranged at the airport for negotiable rates. Only official taxis located inside the airport are recommended.
To Start of Program
  Location:  Urumbamba Valley (Sacred Valley)
  Nearest airport:  Cusco
  Transportation to site: A group arrival transfer is organized for all participants who purchased an air inclusive program and arrive on the group date. Other participants are encouraged to take the group transfer if their flights arrive in time. The transfer to the first program hotel exceeds an hour in length. For this reason, we strongly suggest participants plan for flights to arrive in time to take the group transfer. If this is not possible, participants may contact Road Scholar Travel Services to arrange a private transfer. Taking a taxi from the airport is not advisable as it will be very costly, and it may be difficult to locate a taxi who will travel an hour from the airport. IMPORTANT: The flight from Lima to Cuzco at the beginning of the program is not included in the program cost. If you have booked your air through Road Scholar, we have arranged this for you. If you are arranging your own air, please make sure to take this flight into consideration.
  From End of Program
  Location:  La Paz
  Nearest airport:  La Paz
  Transportation from site: A group departure transfer is organized for all participants who purchased an air inclusive program and depart on the group date. Other participants may take the group transfer as long as their flights depart at or around the same time as the group flights. The airport is about a 20 minute drive from the hotel in La Paz. Participants unable to take the group transfer will be able to arrange a taxi to the airport. Your group leader and the hotel concierge can help you arrange this.


Required innoculations:

Yes: The US State department and the CDC advises travelers that Yellow fever certificate or waiver is required to enter Bolivia. Bolivian authorities at land crossing have been lax in controlling this requirement, but we suggest travelers follow all official requirements to avoid delays and possible denied entry. In lieu of the Yellow fever certificate a medical waiver from your doctor is accepted but you must have the original waiver and a translation in Spanish ready to present to authorities.

Elevation Note: Sacred Valley 8,064ft; Machu Picchu 7,874ft; Cusco 11,150ft; Puno 12,565ft; La Paz 11,800ft.

The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


Daily Schedule

Day 1: Depart the US
(Thursday, October 3)
   
 Depart From: Depart the US from various gateways on an overnight flight to Lima. Arrival airport: Jorge Chavez International Airport in Lima, Peru.

Day 2: Arrival in Peru (Sacred Valley) / Altitude Acclimatizing / Orientation
(Friday, October 4)

Note: IMPORTANT: The flight from Lima to Cuzco at the beginning of the program is not included in the program cost. If you have booked your air through Road Scholar, we have arranged this for you. If you are arranging your own air, please make sure to take this flight into consideration.



   
 Arrive To: Participants who have booked their air through Road Scholar will be met in Lima by their Group Leader or a Road Scholar representative for assistance in checking into the flight to Cuzco. The flight from Lima to Cuzco is not included in your program cost, but if you booked your air through Road Scholar Travel Services, we have arranged it for you. Participants arranging their own air should book flights all the way through to Cuzco. This morning, arrive to Cuzco International Airport.
 Morning: Transfer from the airport to the first program hotel. Check into the hotel and relax before lunch.
 Lunch: Lunch on arrival at the hotel.
 Afternoon: Afternoon at leisure to rest and relax and get used to the altitude and drink some tea. Late afternoon will be the Orientation and a Short presentation " Introduction to Peru" led by your Group Leader.
 Dinner: Welcome Dinner at the hotel
   
Accommodations: Casa Andina Private Collection Valle Sagrado
Meals Included: Lunch, Dinner

Day 3: Presentation: The Rise and Fall of the Incas / Ollantaytambo fortress
(Saturday, October 5)

Note: Walking today in town and at ruins between one and two miles in total. Recommended good shoes to handle uneven terrain and sloping ramp. Bathroom facilities are quite rustic at this site.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel
 Morning: Presentation “The Rise and Fall of the Inca's”: Enjoy a presentation about this history of the mysterious Incan people led by Jean Jacques Decoster, noted professor of History and published author.
 Lunch: Lunch at the Hotel
 Afternoon: Field Trip "Ollantaytambo Fortresa and Town": Led by your Peruvian Study Leader explore Ollantaytambo. Ollantaytambo is an archaeological park to which different functions had been attributed. It is considered a military construction strategically located to protect Cuzco from possible invasions. Ollantaytambo is one of the few cities that still maintain the Inca system of urban planning.
 Dinner: Dinner at a private residence restaurant. The restaurant is situated high above the Valley and offers excellent organic and authentic Andean cuisine handed down through generations.
   
Accommodations: Casa Andina Private Collection Valle Sagrado
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: Machu Picchu and the Vista Dome Train
(Sunday, October 6)

Note: Many steps leading into the site and walking up to one mile on uneven terrain inside the ruins. Standing for up to 45 minutes. Bathroom facilities are located outside the ruins and are comfortable.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel
 Morning: Field Trip "Exploring Machu Picchu": Start the morning by taking the Vista Dome train to Machu Picchu. Machu Picchu was re-discovered in 1911 by US Yale University archaeologist Hiram Bingham. While the Inca Empire reached its peak during the 1400's, legends and myths indicate that Machu Picchu (meaning 'Old Peak' in the Quechua language) was considered Invisible from below and completely self-contained, surrounded by agricultural terraces sufficient to feed its population, and watered by natural springs. Machu Picchu seems to have been utilized by the Inca as a secret ceremonial city. Two thousand feet above the rumbling Urubamba River, the cloud shrouded ruins have palaces, baths, temples, storage rooms and some 150 houses, all in a remarkable state of preservation. Machu Picchu was elected as one of the New 7 Wonders of the World on July 2007.
 Lunch: Lunch at Sanctuary Lodge
 Afternoon: Continue Exploring Machu Pichu on your own before taking the Vista Dome Train back to Ollantaytambu. Coach back to the Hotel from the Train station.
 Dinner: Dinner at the Hotel
 Evening: At leisure and to pack
   
Accommodations: Casa Andina Private Collection Valle Sagrado
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5: Urubamba Sacred Valley / Andean Culture and Agriculture / Cusco
(Monday, October 7)

Note: Coach travel to site for about one hour. Walking today up to two miles, limited bathroom facilities in Cuyani but available on the bus. Cooler weather with light jacket recommended.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at hotel
 Morning: Field Trip "Cuyuni Village": The morning is spent getting to know the locals and the way of life in the peaceful Cuyuni community. Strolling through the ancient farming paths in this primarily agricultural community, visit a small village and its weavers. Textile production has profound historic and cultural significance in the Andes. Spend time witnessing how their gregarious processes of spinning, the gathering of natural dyes, the setting up of the looms, and the creation of designs are all fundamental to the family and social bonds. Take part in a “Quintu” ritual, where the Andean people make an offering to the Apus (divine mountains) and the sacred Pachamama (Mother Earth). Next, witness a ceremony of the llama in which this very important animal is celebrated and appreciated.
 Lunch: Marvel at the majestic mountains as you enjoy a delicious lunch at a restaurant that sits atop the community’s viewpoint.
 Afternoon: Enjoy the stunning drive through the Andes and into Cusco. Check into the hotel and take time at leisure to relax after a long day of discovery.
 Dinner: Dinner at the hotel in Cusco.
 Evening: At leisure to rest or go for a walk in Cusco
   
Accommodations: Casa Andina Classic-Cusco Plaza
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6: Discovering Cusco / Sacsaynuaman
(Tuesday, October 8)

Note: Walking for up to two miles, mostly down hill between the ruins and the city. Standing for up to one hour during the tour. Bathrooms are accessible.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel
 Morning: Field Trip "Cusco City Discovery": Led by your Local Peruvian Study Leader, explore this historic city during a slow-paced walking city tour. Coach to La Almudena cemetery to start our exploration of Cuzqueno culture. At the cemetery examine how locals deal with the rituals of death and burial, giving an insight as to what is prized in life. From there walk downhill towards the main square, passing by the San Pedro market to see where locals shop for daily products and produce, visiting small local shops and colonial houses as you meander through the side streets of the city exploring how locals live.
 Lunch: Typical Cuzqueño lunch. Lunch today is in a true local's restaurant. Your Group Leader will order from the menu of the day featuring multiple dishes that allow you to explore real local fares.
 Afternoon: Field Trip "Explore Sacsayhuaman": Sacsayhuaman is a walled complex just above Cusco. Like all Inca stonework there is still mystery surrounding how it was constructed. Thanks to an as yet unexplained precision in stone-cutting, the structure is built in such a way that a single piece of paper will not fit between two stones. The Spanish harvested a large quantity of rock from the walls of the structure to build churches in Cuzco, which is why the walls are in perfect condition up to a certain height, and missing above that point.
 Dinner: Dinner on your own in Cusco to explore local flavors
 Evening: At leisure to rest or stroll in Cusco after dinner
   
Accommodations: Casa Andina Classic-Cusco Plaza
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 7: Discovering Cusco / Symbiotic Mixing of Andean and Christian Cultures
(Wednesday, October 9)

Note: Slow walking and standing for up to 1 mile in the morning tour, with the option of resting after lunch. Optional afternoon walking is up to 1.5 miles on some uneven surfaces.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.
 Morning: Presentation "Religion and Society" and Field Trip "Deeper into Cuzco": Understanding the symbiotic mixing process of Andean religion and Catholicism led by our renowned local Historian. Then, depart on foot for a unique walking discovery of Cusco led by our local Historian. Visit Korikancha Palace, the most important temple in the Inca Empire. The Church of Santo Domingo was built on the site, using the ruined foundations of the temple that was flattened by the Spanish in the 17th century. Next see Cuzco Cathedral. Its construction started in 1560 and finished in 1664. It contains the best manifestations of colonial goldsmith and wood carving, as well as a valuable collection of canvases.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.
 Afternoon: Free Time or Optional Field Trip "La Compana and San Blas": Enjoy an afternoon to yourself to explore Cusco at your own pace or to relax at the hotel or join your study leader for a continued walking tour to see La Compana church. This Baroque church was built in the 17th century and boasts impressive treasures in in sacristy. Then visit the ancient settlement of San Blas to discover more of the Incan history in the arts.
 Dinner: Dinner on your own to explore local flavors.
 Evening: Evening at leisure to rest or pack.
   
Accommodations: Casa Andina Classic-Cusco Plaza
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 8: Rural Andean Villages / Evolution of Andean Culture / Transfer to Puno
(Thursday, October 10)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.
 Morning: Field Trip "Discovering Rural Andean Villages": Led by your local Historian, continue learning about evolution of local culture over the centuries. First visit Andahuaylillas, where the Church of San Pedro Apostal is considered to be the "Sistine Chapel" of the Americas. Inside the outwardly modest church are the remains of Inca walls, using a mixture of construction expressing much of the Andean religious syncretism which emerged as a result of the Spanish conquest. Next visit Raqchi, which was originally built by the pre-Incan Wari culture. This archaeological complex highlights the power of religious and political conquest on the part of the Incas. Visit the Temple of Viracocha, which once held the largest roof in the Incan world.
 Lunch: Lunch en route at a local restaurant.
 Afternoon: Field Trip "Sillustani": Sillustani is a pre-Incan burial ground. The tombs, which are built in tower-like structures called chullpas, are vestiges of the Collas, an Aymaran group conquered by the Inca in the early 1400's. The tombs were shaped like a woman's uterus, and corpses were mummified in a fetal position, since Aymaras believed in re-incarnation. The only openings of the buildings face east, since they believed that at sunrise the god Sun was reborn. In the late afternoon, arrive in Puno and Check in to the hotel. Some time to rest and freshen up before dinner.
 Dinner: Dinner at the Hotel (Dinner is at leisure and open seating in the dining room).
   
Accommodations: Casa Andina Private Collection Puno
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 9: The Magic of Lake Titicaca & The Andean Legacy
(Friday, October 11)

Note: At the border crossing, U.S. citizens will be required to pay for the Bolivian Visa. The local provider will assist. Walking for up to 30 minutes in town. Short hike, about 20 mins, on Moon Island including some stone steps, option to rest at shore or remain on boat.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at hotel.
 Morning: Transit to Huatajata Island and Field Trip "Discovering Lake Titicaca": This morning leave Puno early to cross the border. First stop in Copacabana for a visit to the cathedral. Discover Lake Titicaca by hydrofoil, led by our local expert guide explore Moon Island and discover the temple of the sun virgin. Continue to Sun Island,and discover the Inca Staircase & Sacred fountain, taste the sacred water believed to give eternal youth & happiness.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local archaeological restaurant.
 Afternoon: This afternoon arrive to Huatajata Island. Check in to the hotel and njoy some time to freshen up and rest before a wonderful early evening cultural presentation. Before dinner, enjoy an Audiovisual Presentation:"The Mystic World of the Kallawayas". The Kallawaya are natural healers of Bolivia authorized by law to practice natural medicine. The group of roaming traditional healers can trace their heritage directly back to the Tiwanaku culture. According to the UNESCO Safeguarding Project, their lines can be traced back to Pre-Incan times. Meet a true Kallawaya, and enjoy an opportunity to ask questions about his or her practices.
 Dinner: Enjoy a welcome drink with dinner at the hotel on the shores of Lake Titicaca.
 Evening: At leisure to rest.
   
Accommodations: Inca Utama Hotel and Spa
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 10: In Depth Exploration of Lake Titicaca
(Saturday, October 12)

Note: Walking at some of the morning sites includes wet or uneven terrain in some places. Bathroom facilities are rustic but available at each stop.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at hotel.
 Morning: Field Trip "Discovering The Cultures of Lake Titicaca": First, see the Altiplano Museum, which includes expositions about the cultural heritage of the Aymara and the Incan peoples. See how the region's culture developed through the colonial times and learn of Jacques Cousteau's astounding expedition to Lake Titicaca. Board a hydrofoil to start a new adventure cruise on Lake Titicaca. Presentation "The New Archaological Discovery on Titicaca": On the island of Pariti, enjoy a presentation led by your local expert, about the archeological revolution on Lake Titicaca. Enjoy an island overview and museum visit where you will observe the high artistic quality found in over 100 of the finest Tiwanaku culture ceramic pieces. Continue to Kalauta Island, where lies the largest Ancient Necropolis on Lake Titicaca. This mysterious island is reached by navigating through swinging Totora reed canals. Visit the Uros-Iquito people who use those Totora reeds to make their home on artificial floating islands. For centuries, this pre-Incan group of people has made their own on floating islands fashioned from deep layers of Totora reeds. Lastly, learn about the importance of managing tourism in this ecologically and culturally rich area at the Sustainable Tourism Project on Quewaya Island.
 Lunch: Lunch with the Atapi community.
 Afternoon: After lunch re-board the Hydrofoil and cruise back to Huatajata. This afternoon is free time at leisure to relax or explore the Island on your own.
 Dinner: Dinner at the Hotel.
 Evening: Field Trip "Discovering the Southern Skies": Enjoy a guided night visit to the Native Observatory "Alajpacha". Learn from the Aymaras Cosmovision & admire the Southern constellations.
   
Accommodations: Inca Utama Hotel and Spa
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 11: Discovering Tiwanaku and the Ancient Aymaras Civilization.
(Sunday, October 13)

Note: Walking during the morning visit is limited but terrain is somewhat rough and rocky. Bathrooms are available, though rustic.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at Hotel.
 Morning: Field Trip "Tiwanaku Ruins" and Transit to La Paz: Discover the Tiwanaku Ruins (1.580 BC-1.000 AD). Led by your local Bolivian expert, discover the magnificent ruins of Bolivia and one of the oldest civilizations in the Americas. The Sun gate, the temple of Kalasasaya and the pyramid of Akapana are the sample of a glorious past. Due to an economic crisis caused by a long drought, the Tiwanaku collapsed around 1.000 AD, but evidence of a technologically and socially advanced society is apparent at this historic site.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant near Tiwanaku.
 Afternoon: This afternoon after lunch continue to La Paz. On the way into the city your Bolivian expert guide, will answer all questions about Bolivia. Check in to the hotel with enough time to freshen up and rest before dinner.
 Dinner: Dinner at the Hotel.
 Evening: Evening at leisure to rest or walk near the hotel and explore La Paz.
   
Accommodations: Hotel Europa
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 12: Discovering La Paz / Free Time / Farewell Dinner
(Monday, October 14)

Note: Walking today will be up to 2 miles, and streets can be bustling and at an incline.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.
 Morning: Field Trip "La Paz City Discovery": Led by your expert Bolivian guide experience the old city of La Paz and its surroundings. This city can transport you to a mysterious past where any corner, any street, is a hidden treasure of living history which hints at pre-Hispanic times. Discover the native and colonial areas as well as the the Witch Doctor's Market.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant in La Paz.
 Afternoon: Free Time: Enjoy the late afternoon at leisure to relax or explore on your own. Your Bolivian guide will be happy to help you plan your afternoon and make recommendations.
 Dinner: Farewell Dinner and Bolivian folklore show.
   
Accommodations: Hotel Europa
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 13: Depart La Paz
(Tuesday, October 15)

Note: A departure tax of approx. $25 U.S., generally not included in airfare, will be charged at the airport upon leaving.



   
 Depart From: Depart La Paz
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the Hotel.
 Morning: Morning at leisure to pack and get ready for flights home, or to enjoy La Paz on your own.
 Lunch: Lunch on your own in La Paz.
 Afternoon: Transfer to the airport for departures.
   
Meals Included: Breakfast

Day 14: In Flight/Arrival in USA
(Wednesday, October 16)

Note: Group departure flights may be overnight flights.



   
 Arrive To: Group flights arrive to the USA.
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Suggested Reading List


A Concise History of Bolivia


Author: Herbert Klein


Description: From prehistory through independence, return of democracy in 1982, and current politics, this is an excellent survey of the Andean nation.



Art of the Andes, from Chavin to Inca


Author: Rebecca Stone-Miller


Description: This authoritative and concise illustrated survey of Andean art and architecture covers not only Machu Picchu and additional Inca monuments, but also Chan Chan, Nasca and other archaeological sites and cultures.



Bolivia Map


Author: ITMB


Description: A traveler's map at a scale of 1:1,250,000.



Cloud Forest, A Chronicle of the South American Wilderness


Author: Peter Matthiessen


Description: Matthiessen recounts with wit, insight and style his odyssey to the Amazon and Andes, including Machu Picchu and Tierra del Fuego.



Conquest of the Incas


Author: John Hemming


Description: This classic prize-winning history of the Inca struggle against the Spanish invasion weaves wide-ranging, scholarly material in to a gripping narrative.



Insight Guide Peru


Author: Insight Guides


Description: Panoramic in scope, this illustrated overview brings Peru to life in hundreds of color photographs and vivid essays by a team of experts writing on history, archaeology and culture.



Lines in the Water, Nature and Culture at Lake Titicaca


Author: Benjamin Orlove


Description: With the author's photographs and reflections on the relationship of the lake-dwelling fishermen to their environment, this is an illuminating personal account of life in the Andean highlands.



Lonely Planet Bolivia


Author: Kate Armstrong


Description: A practical guide with detailed maps, language guides, travel tips and good background on history, culture and politics.



Lost City of the Incas


Author: Hiram Bingham


Description: This first-rate adventure story by the man who brought Machu Picchu to the attention of the world 100 years ago is not just a gripping tale of exploration and archaeology, it also sets the scene for any visitor to the site. Hugh Thomson (A Sacred Landscape, The Search for Ancient Peru) provides the introduction to this Centenary Edition.



Machu Picchu, Unveiling the Mystery of the Incas


Author: Richard L. Burger (Editor), Lucy C. Salazar (Editor)


Description: Burger and Salazar vividly evoke the art, architecture, culture and society of Machu Picchu in this illustrated, up-to-date survey. With Hiram Bingham's original report, archival and modern photographs -- and excellent chapters on recent archaeology at the site.



Peru Map


Author: Berndtson & Berndtson


Description: A laminated map of Peru with city plans.



Peru, Birds of the Forest


Author: Rainforest Publications


Description: A handy, double-sided laminated card depicting 100 commonly encountered parrots, motmots, hummingbirds and other forest birds of Peru. We also carry Peru Mammals Guide plastic card. (Item PRU73)



Peru, Travellers' Wildlife Guides


Author: David L. Pearson, Les Beletsky


Description: Featuring 500 illustrations of the birds, amphibians, reptiles, mammals and insects of the Amazon, Andes and Pacific Coast.



The Bad Girl


Author: Mario Vargas Llosa, Edith Grossman (Translator)


Description: Ricardo Somocurcio is in love with a bad girl. He loves her as a teenager in Lima in 1950, and next in Paris, where she appears as the enchanting Comrade Arlette. In Llosa's beguiling new novel, the strange bedfellows of good and bad turn out not to be what they appear.



The Bridge of San Luis Rey


Author: Thornton Wilder


Description: The classic tale of Franciscan missionaries in 18th-century Peru by the Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist. First published in 1927.



The Heights of Machu Picchu


Author: Pablo Neruda, Nathaniel Tarn (Translator)


Description: Machu Picchu and the Inca civilization inspired this celebrated epic hymn to the Americas by the great Pablo Neruda. Bilingual edition.



The Inca Trail, Cuzco & Machu Picchu


Author: Alexander Stewart


Description: With an excellent overview of culture and history, and chapters on exploring Cuzco, Lima and Machu Picchu.



The Incas


Author: Carmen Bernard, Paul Bahn (Translator)


Description: Featuring hundreds of archival drawings and photographs, a chronology and chapters on Atahualpa, the Conquistadors and Hiram Bingham, this handy book (previously published as "People of the Sun") illuminates the daily life, monuments and history of the Inca.



The Last Days of the Incas


Author: Kim Macquarrie


Description: MacQuarrie tackles the personality, aspirations and greed of Francisco Pizarro in this vivid account of the conquest of a continent.



Turn Right at Machu Picchu


Author: Mark Adams


Description: Over his head on an arduous guided trek to Choquequirao and other remote sites, Mark Adams mixes entertaining tales of his adventuress (he makes himself out to be quite the accidental explorer) with analysis of the rather grand Hiram Bingham in this light-hearted "following-in-the-footsteps-of" account.





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