It's a fabulous trip!
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Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.
Activity note: This is an international travel day; no meals or program activities are scheduled on this day. Hotel check-in available from 3:00 p.m. The drive from the airport to the hotel is about 10 miles, approx. 1 hour (dependent on traffic).
Dinner: This meal has been excluded from the program cost and is on your own to enjoy what you like. Please refer to the “Notes” section of the prep mats for a list of recommended restaurants.
Evening: Arrivals into Aeropuerto Internacional Jorge Chávez - Jorge Chávez International Airport (LIM) in Lima, Peru. See your program’s travel details regarding transfers. If you are an independent traveler (POP status), see “Ground Transportation to First Location.” Upon arriving at the hotel, check in and get your room assignment.
Activity note: Walking approx. 3 hours; paved surfaces, some steps in churches and museum. Driving about 2 hours (subject to traffic).
Breakfast: At the hotel.
Morning: Orientation: In our private meeting room at the hotel, the Group Leader will greet everyone and lead introductions. We will review the up-to-date program schedule, discuss roles and responsibilities, logistics, safety guidelines, emergency procedures, and answer questions. High elevations in the Peruvian Andes might cause some to experience altitude sickness. Please discuss appropriate preventative measures with your personal physician prior to travel. Here are some helpful tips to alleviate symptoms of altitude sickness: 1) Get plenty of rest before you travel. 2) Avoid alcohol, sleeping pills or narcotics. 3) Drink plenty of fluids. 4) Eat high-carbohydrate foods and avoid fatty foods. 5) Avoid heavy exercise while staying at high elevations. Periods in the schedule labeled “Free Time” and “At Leisure” offer opportunities to make the program more meaningful and memorable while going out to explore on your own, engaging in available activities independently, making new friends among fellow Road Scholars, or simply relaxing. The Group Leader will always be happy to offer suggestions. Most meals on our program will feature local cuisine and often be plated and served set meals; in others, we will have buffets. Beverages include coffee, tea, water; other beverages are usually available for purchase. Program activities, schedules, personnel, and indicated distances or times may change due to local circumstances/conditions. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding. We will enjoy a presentation by a local expert on the relationship between biodiversity and the Humboldt current in Peru. The lecture will take place at the hotel. Then, by bus we will transfer southwards to the suburb of Chorrillos. We'll learn about the way of life at this fishing community through interactions with locals and a visit to the pier and local fish market.
Lunch: At a local restaurant, we’ll have a plated 3-course lunch with a non-alcoholic beverage included; other beverages available for purchase. Our meal will also include a demonstration on how to make Peru's signature drink--the pisco sour.
Afternoon: Our day continues with an exploration of downtown Lima to learn about Lima’s colonial past. We will stop in Lima's Plaza de Armas and disembark the bus for a field trip to Casa Aliaga and the Museo de la Gastronomia Peruana (Peruvian Gastronomy Museum). At the conclusion of the activity, the bus will drop us off at the hotel. We will have some time to freshen up and relax. Then, together with the Group Leader we will depart from the hotel to the ruins of Huaca Pucllana for dinner. In the midst of Lima's attractive Miraflores district sits a pre-Inca ceremonial center known as Huaca Pucllana. The large adobe complex is thought to have served as an administrative and religious center for various fishing and farming communities in the area. Archaeological evidence points to the city being taken over by the Wari people around CE 700. Wari mummies and artifacts have been discovered in the ruins, indicating that the site was predominantly used for religious rites including sacrifices and burials. Before dinner, we will walk around the complex with our local guide and Group Leader.
Dinner: At the local restaurant overlooking the ruins of Huaca Pucllana, we’ll enjoy our plated 3-course welcome meal with a non-alcoholic beverage included.
Evening: We’ll then enjoy a leisurely walk back to our hotel with our Group Leader. The remainder of the evening will be at leisure.
Activity note: High elevations cause some to experience altitude sickness. Here are some helpful tips to alleviate symptoms: 1) Get plenty of rest before you travel. 2) Avoid alcohol, sleeping pills or narcotics. 3) Drink plenty of fluids. 4) Eat high-carbohydrate foods and avoid fatty foods. 5) Avoid heavy exercise while staying at high elevations. Flight from Lima to Cusco is approx. 1.5 hours. Driving about 40 miles total. Walking approx. 3.5 hours; some dirt, rugged terrain, cobblestone streets.
Breakfast: Early breakfast at the hotel.
Morning: First up, we will complete check-out procedures. Next, we will enjoy a presentation by a local expert on the politics and economy of Peru. Afterwards, we will depart to the airport for our flight to Cusco. Upon arrival in Cusco, we'll board a bus and begin driving to the Sacred Valley of the Incas.
Lunch: On your own. There will be opportunities for lunch at the Lima airport.
Afternoon: Upon arrival in Cusco, we'll board a bus and meet our local guide. As we drive into the Sacred Valley of the Incas where our hotel is located, our local guide will give us a brief introduction to the area. We’ll check into the hotel and rest before dinner.
Dinner: At the hotel, we’ll have a plated 3-course lunch with a non-alcoholic beverage included.
Evening: A visit to the hotel’s on-site planetarium with a local expert will introduce us to the Andean skies and Inca astronomy. This activity is dependent on clear skies.
Activity note: The drive to the Maras Salt Pans is about 30 miles; approx. 1.5 hours; other drives are shorter distances. Hiking about 1.5 miles; approx. 1 hour; downhill trail. The following morning, we visit Machu Picchu. Pack a small bag for the overnight in Aguas Calientes.
Breakfast: At the hotel.
Morning: After a short drive, we will accompany our Group Leader and local expert on a walking exploration of a typical produce market. We'll discuss the unique conditions that make this valley perfect for farming as we view some of the interesting vegetables and fruit grown here. The Sacred Valley was once an important agricultural center for the Inca Empire. In this part of the world, Inca terraces are as ubiquitous as potatoes - and many are still in use. Next, we'll transfer to the Moray archaeological site, where we will have a lecture to learn about Inca agriculture. Researchers and archaeologists theorize that the Inca site at Moray was once used for agricultural studies and experiments. The unique terraces at this site are laid out in concentric circles within three large pits measuring as much as 100 feet in depth. We will then continue to the community of Maras and visit the local salt mines with a local expert. These local natural salt mines have existed since the time of the Inca and continued through that of the Spanish Conquistadors. We’ll learn how valuable salt was in the preservation of food, especially meats and see a demonstration of the salt extraction process.
Lunch: In Maras with the local community, we’ll enjoy lunch.
Afternoon: We will continue our visit with the local community of Maras, learning how to weave baskets from corn husks, about their farming techniques, and getting a glimpse of daily life in the Sacred Valley.< Our day will culminate with an ancient Pachamama ceremony led by a shaman. Pachamama is an important fertility goddess revered by the people of the Andes. She can be likened to the goddess “Mother Nature” in Western culture. We’ll then return to the hotel.
Dinner: Early dinner at the hotel.
Evening: At leisure. Be sure to prepare for check-out, transfer, and our early morning journey to Machu Picchu tomorrow morning. Pack an overnight bag no more than 11 lbs. for this night; excess luggage will be secured for you until our return to Cusco.
Activity note: Ollantayambo ruins are steep with about 100 stone steps to the top of the fortress at an altitude of 9,100 feet. Train from Ollantaytambo to Aguas Calientes is about 1.5 hours. The bus drive from Aguas Calientes Town to the Machu Picchu ruins is about 4 miles; approx. ½ hour. It is steep and winding. Walking and standing for at least 5 hours; dirt and grass terrain; many staircases; sloping, paved sidewalks in town. We recommend wearing or bringing a long-sleeved shirt for insect protection.
Breakfast: Early breakfast at hotel.
Morning: We’ll transfer to the Ollantaytambo ruins, where we’ll learn about the engineering genius of the Inca demonstrated by the extensive terracing and irrigation at the site. Running water still flows through the town in aqueducts. The Inca emperor Pachacuti built Ollantaytambo in the 15th century as part of his royal estate. In the mid-15th century after Pachacuti’s death, the Spanish conquest of Peru began. The Inca emperor at that time was Manco Inca who used Ollantaytambo as a stronghold against the Spanish. His army won a small victory nearby against Spanish forces. Though, shortly afterwards Manco Inca decided the site was not secure enough and fled with the remaining members of his empire to Vilcabamba where the Inca famously made their last stand against the Spanish. After our field trip, we’ll transfer to Ollantaytambo train station where we will board a train to Aguas Calientes Station on our way to Machu Picchu. This scenic journey by rail follows the meandering path of the Urubamba River and provides travelers with spectacular views of the snowcapped Andes. Disembarking at the Aguas Calientes Station (6,693 feet elevation), we’ll walk to our hotel and check in. After completing check-in procedures, we'll set out on foot - an approximately 5 minute walk - to the bus depot. There, we will board a bus that will take us up the mountain to the Machu Picchu ruins. Please note, seating on the buses is on a "first come, first serve" basis. Therefore, we do not have a set departure time and it will be necessary to wait in line to board the bus.
Lunch: At a local restaurant outside of the ruins, we’ll have a buffet lunch.
Afternoon: After lunch, we will enter the site and spend the afternoon exploring in and around the Machu Picchu ruins with a local expert. The discovery of this ancient and incredible Inca city is credited to Hiram Bingham, a Yale graduate and former U.S. senator fascinated with Inca archaeology. Bingham found Machu Picchu, with the help of a local farmer who knew about the ruins, while he was searching for Vilcabamba and Vitcos. Bingham hypothesized that the site was a “citadel” existing for strategic and defense purposes. He also speculated that the site was a refuge for Cusco's Virgins of the Sun, based upon the finding of skulls there, although not scientifically classified as female. Breakthroughs in archaeology since 1985 have, taken as a whole, supported the emerging view of Machu Picchu as a royal estate. Archaeologists believe the site was built around 1450-1460 at the orders of Inca ruler Pachacutec Inca Yupanqui. It is estimated that the ruler lived here with more than 750 laborers, servants, family and relatives and priests. Machu Picchu was built, flourished, and fell into demise within a period of 100 years. The reason for its disuse remains largely a mystery, although archaeologists speculate it may have had to do with the Spanish conquest. Transfer back to Aguas Calientes for dinner.
Dinner: At the hotel, we’ll have a plated 3-course meal with a non-alcoholic beverage included.
Evening: At leisure. Prepare for check out and transfer tomorrow morning.
Activity note: The altitude at Chinchero is approx. 12,000 ft. Walking less than .5 mile over sloping, cobblestone paths but the altitude can make the walk more seem challenging. For more information about purchasing a second ticket to Machu Picchu, see NOTES section of the preparatory materials.
Breakfast: At the hotel.
Morning: We’ll have some time for personal independent exploration before boarding the train back to Ollantaytambo. During this free time, you might like to go to the artisanal market or to the hot springs, located about 1/2 up the hill on a paved walkway. You could also re-visit Machu Picchu. Please note that tickets for additional entrance to the Machu Picchu ruins are not included in your program cost. New regulations have reduced the number of daily visitors allowed to enter Machu Picchu and Huayna Picchu. If you wish to visit the ruins independently this morning we recommend obtaining tickets in advance to guarantee availability. From June to October, they tend to sell out quickly. Feel free to contact your program provider for more information. We will meet our Group Leader back at the hotel and walk to the train station as a group. We will board the train back to Ollantaytambo Station. Upon arrival, we disembark and board a bus which will take us to our lunch venue.
Lunch: At a local restaurant in Ollantaytambo.
Afternoon: We will transfer to the small town of Chinchero. Our expert led field trip this afternoon is to a local weaving cooperative where we will observe a weaving demonstration. Weaving is a way of life in Chinchero, as important for preserving ancient traditions as it is for earning a livelihood. Located in the Peruvian Andes on the Inca road between Cusco and Machu Picchu, Chinchero was an early Inca center built by emperor Tupa Inca as his country estate. During Inca reign, textiles were woven and offered to mark special occasions, from peace treaties and sacrifices to marriage ceremonies and puberty rites. In Chinchero, children grow up watching their mothers work on the spindle and loom. By age six or seven, most children have learned to weave. They begin with jakimas, narrow ribbons, before moving on to more complicated pieces. From here, we transfer to our hotel in Cusco.
Dinner: This meal has been excluded from the program cost and is on your own to enjoy what you like. Please see the “Notes” section for a list of restaurants. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions.
Evening: At leisure.
Activity note: Walking up to 2 miles today over dirty and grass, some cobblestones.
Breakfast: At the hotel.
Morning: We will enjoy a visit to the impressive Sacsayhuaman ruins. The stone fortress at Sacsayhuaman forms the head of the Puma design of old Cusco. The ruin is constructed of huge polygonal blocks which interlock with one another so precisely a knife blade cannot be inserted between them. This site is an engineering feat; the stones used are not found in the region and most of the blocks weigh more than a ton. The largest rock weighs more than 300 tons. We will then visit two Incan ruins surrounding Cusco; Kenko and Tambomachay. Due to the lack of written records from the time period, the purpose of many Incan ruins is a mystery. Though, archaeological evidence at Kenko shows that the Inca built the site as a “huaca” or holy site and researchers speculate that death rituals, mummification and human sacrifice were practiced here. Researchers believe that priests used the channels carved into the site to determine whether a person lived a good life by observing the route that liquid poured into the channels– chicha (fermented corn), holy water, or blood flowed. Tambomachay was likely used as a spa for Inca political elite; aqueducts and canals channel water from a nearby thermal spring into waterfalls that cascade into a small pool.
Lunch: At a local restaurant featuring typical Cusqueño fare.
Afternoon: We’ll head back to the hotel. Enjoy some time at leisure. Before dinner, we’ll regroup for a presentation by a local expert on the history of Incan and Andean musical instruments. The lecture will take place at the hotel. At the conclusion, we’ll transfer by bus to a local restaurant.
Dinner: Farewell dinner at a local restaurant. One alcoholic beverage included. Other beverages and additional alcohol available for purchase.
Evening: At leisure. Be sure to prepare for check-out and departure in the morning.
Activity note: The hotel in Cusco will store our luggage after check-out and hold it until it is time for us to transfer to the airport. The program concludes with an early evening flight from Cusco to Lima last approximately 1.5 hours. Please book flights departing Lima from 9:00 p.m. onward. The weight limit for checked luggage on this flight is 50 lbs. Transfer to the airport is about 2 miles; less than 1 hour.
Breakfast: At the hotel.
Morning: After checking out and storing our luggage at the hotel, we'll join a local expert for a walking field trip through the city of Cusco including a visit to Koricancha. Cusco is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the Western Hemisphere. It was once the heart of the Inca Empire and the center of their known world. Under Inca Pachacutec’s leadership, the city became a study in sophisticated urban development and engineering. Sadly, the site was thoroughly looted by Francisco Pizarro and his forces in 1533. The sturdy Inca foundations and looted stones were used to construct a new city. Koricancha, also spelled Qorikancha, is the Temple of the Sun in downtown Cusco; believed to have been an important religious center for the Inca. Colonial reports dating back to Cusco’s conquest indicate that it once held a gold statue of the sun weighing approximately two tons and inlayed with gems. The temple was built with enormous boulders and is one of the most outstanding examples of this type of construction. The invading Spaniards did their best to destroy it and replace it with a church, built on the solid foundations soon after the conquest. This symbolized the Christian triumph over heathen religion. Our next stop is to the Pre-Columbian Art Museum. The Pre-Columbian Art Museum features art from the Nazca, Mochica, Chimu, Inca culture and more; societies who lived in Peru prior to the European conquest. Pieces in the collection date from 1250 B.C to 1532 A.D. The collection was curated by renowned Peruvian painter Fernando de Szyszlo Valdelomar and art historian Cecilia Bakula. The two selected over 400 pieces from the Larco Museum’s extensive archive and brought the pieces to Cusco to open the museum. Since 2003, the museum has showcased these works, sharing the beautiful art of these Pre-Columbian peoples with visitors.
Lunch: At a local restaurant featuring typical Cusqueño fare.
Afternoon: Free Time. Take some time for independent exploration of Cusco. Please see "Notes" section for a list of suggested activities. The Group Leader will also be happy to offer recommendations. We will all meet back at the hotel at the time predetermined by the Group Leader in the morning and transfer to the airport together. Please be considerate to your fellow travelers and arrive punctually.
Evening: Upon arrival to Lima, we will connect with our evening flights out of Jorge Chávez International Airport to the U.S. This concludes our program. If you are returning home, safe travels. If you are staying on independently, have a wonderful time. If you are transferring to another Road Scholar program, detailed instructions are included in your Information Packet for that program. We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on rewarding programs in the future. Please join our Facebook page and share photos of your program. Visit us at www.facebook.com/rsadventures. Best wishes for all your journeys!
It's a fabulous trip!
The Perspectives of Peru program provided an insight into the many different cultures of Peru that preceded the Incas as well as the Incas. The highlight of course is a visit to Machu Picchu. There is an option to visit Machu Picchu the next morning as well. Take advantage of it and get to see sunrise at Machu Picchu. A Road Scholar guide also accompanies anyone who goes to Machu Picchu the second time. The program also provides participants with a appreciation for modern Peru.
more detail is always welcome - especially with links to info on sites we are visting and more.
This was a well planned trip and good value. I did my part my reading the suggested texts. It enhanced my understanding of experience. I would like to come back and explore Peru in greater depth. Thank you for this wonderful experience.
If Machu Pichu and Peru are on your bucket list, you have to take this trip!!
Excellent itinerary, tour leader, tour guides and lecturers.
A wonderful, exacting way to learn about another culture that you may have only read about in history books. It forces you to evaluate your own knowledge of history, and culture outside of your box; how it is shaded and the world we live in.
The Peru program was a wonderful experience. I'm not an athlete, but I managed to handle the trip well; the guides were careful to mix walking, standing to listen, and seated transportation well. Very little waiting in line -- tickets handed out by group leader. Information about any changes was shared; we always knew what to expect. Informative guides, a beautiful place. I highly recommend this trip.
My final thoughts on this trip to Peru: DO IT!
This is a fascinating program. I found it strenuous because I did struggle with the effects of high altitude even with medication. However , it was worth the effort. Peru was a delightful surprise .Lima is a cosmopolitan city. The food is outstanding throughout Peru. It is fresh, healthy and beautifully prepared. The highlight is learning about Inca culture and its impact on modern day Peru. The lectures ranged from politics to agriculture to music. Each lecturer was engaging and informative. Our primary guides, Vlad and Eduard , were outstanding. They were knowledgeable , proud of their country and attentive to our needs. I found all but one hotel satisfactory. Peruvians are warm and hospitable. And, of course, your first sight of Machu Picchu is an "aha" moment.
ROAD SCHOLAR ACCOMODATED US IN SUCH A WAY THAT A RIGOROUS VACATION WAS SAFE, FUN AND INFORMATIVE. WE ARE ALREADY PLANNING OUR NEXT TRIP!
This isn't about the website, but a comment. You state that you are non-profit, but I keep getting printed material that must cost quite a bit. I think you should eliminate this unless someone asks for it.
This trip is a wonderful experience into Peruvian life. Beyond Machu Picchu, the local activities like markets, archeological sites, Lima tour and demonstrations are excellent. Note that Machu Picchu requires good physical ability as well as other sites with up and down hills and broken walkways.
Program is an overview of the Inca history and its traditions. It is not a hike of Machu Picchu. Program does give an excellent overview of Peru with the lectures included and the sites visited are very inclusive and informative beside being absolutely a beautiful country
Accommodations, ALL speakers, travel means, etc., were fantastic. First time with Road Scholar, but will definitely NOT be my last. I went as a solo in a small group, but really made no difference as everyone was friendly...other solos as well as marrieds. Most people had walking sticks, but I didn't use mine much.
Amazing journey...great food, fabulous sites, good learning experiences, pleasant companions and guides!
This was our first RS trip and it exceeded all expectations. Guides and speakers were excellent, Peruvian food is fabulous and accomodations were clean and mosty very comfortable. Tour companions were fun & friendly. The exchange rate and Peruvian goods makes this a very good tour for shoppers. I would highly recommend, you will not be sorry.
I thoroughly enjoyed the Road Scholar trip Perspectives of Peru. Our leaders were fantastic! Not only is Peru a beautiful country, but our accommodations and meals couldn't be beat. I highly recommend the trip.
This was a great trip. The guides were excellent and informative. I wish the group was a little smaller, especially when we were at Machu Picchu. Many people had issues with the altitude, which I did not, because I live in Denver and hike at altitude frequently. I think for that reason the trip should be listed as a little harder than other "keep the pace" trips.
This was my first Road Scholar trip and it was excellent. Great tour, learning experience, and people. I highly recommend Road Scholars.
This was a very good trip. We saw it all. Good leaders, good food (too good and too plentiful), and of course Machu Picchu is super. Be prepared for altitude challenges. Only criticism: the trip could have included a bit more exercise, the only real exertion was at Machu Picchu. Also, fewer food market visits (there were 3), and perhaps add a visit to a silversmith or some other indigenous craftsman.
An amazing program and one I highly recommend. The days were full with lectures, demonstrations, and tours. Exceptionally knowledgeable tour leaders, lecturers, and guides provided not only information but imparted their deep pride in their country, its history, and culture. The small group size (12 participants) was perfect. Machu Picchu was amazing and worth the physical effort.
Perspectives of Peru was a greatly informative and explorative program. This was my first group trip, and it completely blew me away. The lodging was immaculate, and the meals were the finest available. Our local guides, Enrique and Ronaldo, immersed us in Peruvian culture and history. This program needs to be a few days longer to allow more exploration of cultural sites. This trip was like a trailer for a movie, you get the highlights, but you end up wanting to see more! The aforementioned staff were easy to deal with, accomodating, and overall great representatives. I am much younger than the usual demographics for Road Scholar, but even I want to retire to Peru after this trip!
This program exceeded my expectations. Our guides, Enrico and Ronald, were skilled, kind, and exceptionally competent and knowledgeable. Peru is more than MachuPicchu. The country is diverse, charming, warm, welcoming. There is astounding depth to the history and culture. I would be glad to return for more!!!
This was a splendid trip, especially the highlight - Machu Picchu. We saw many archeological/historic sites, but the main focus of this trip seemed to be food and agriculture. For example, we had the opportunity to drive a pair of huge oxen behind a wooden plow and learn how several Peruvian dishes and drinks are made. We also learned about the Inca's experimental agricultural techniques and the varieties of corn, potatoes, even eating potatoes that were roasted in an oven underground and visiting a fish market and a farmer's market. If you are into that sort of thing, this trip will be your nirvana, although we didn't eat at any of Lima's fashionable foodie restaurants, but we were more than well fed. I personally would have preferred more emphasis on art, history and archeology, but all of our leaders, lecturers and professors were knowledgeable and made interesting presentations. Despite airport delays caused by Pachamama (about which you'll learn) I was very glad I went on this trip!
Great program to learn about both ancient cultures but also the country today. If you have ever wanted to go to Peru you want to sign up for this program.
This trip was excellent. Our wonderful guides made me want to return to Peru and learn more about this beautiful and fascinating country.
"The Road Scholar Perspectives of Peru: Discover Lima, Cusco, Yucay, & Machu Picchu Program is a journey unlike any other. It is a trek of self-exploration and endurance on many levels. The magnitude of personal achievement is experienced only through a journey of this genre. The cultural experience and privilege of spending time exploring the Lost City of The Incas at Machu Picchu, marveling at the Andean Mountain Range, and experiencing the diversity of the Peruvian culture and people is a privilege and unforgettable and enlightening in countless ways." "From beginning to end, the Road Scholar staff, website, correspondence, program itinerary and travel information were exceptional. Our Road Scholar guides took the time to observe and attend to the strengths and vulnerabilities of each of our team members. I look forward to my next adventure with Road Scholar." -Jodi J De Luca, PhD
Love the small groups and who the couples are no "jointed at the hip" so you can get to know everyone which was the case on the "Walking the countryside in England".
Thoroughly enjoyed our Perspective of Peru trip which included our hiking to to Machu Pucchu which I accomplished and can now take off my 'bucket list'.
Perspectives of Peru...a definite for your bucket list!
Juan Carlos as our program coordinator was excellent!
Be prepared to stand in long lines and wait for buses, trains and planes if delays occur. Visitors are limited daily in Machu Picchu,but hardly enough.
We were immersed in the food, music, color, culture and pageantry of Peru; time well spent, and expertly orchestrated.
This was our second trip with Road Scholar. As with the first trip, we were impressed with both the itinerary and the organization/guidance. It was fun and educational. The accommodations and meals were outstanding. Our guides knowledgable, friendly, and competent. We were taken care of very well. I highly recommend the trip.
We saw and experienced much more than we would ever have been able to do on our own--not just in the variety of activities, but in their quality and cohesiveness. A few times we were bored by a few activities, and sometimes felt rushed spending an hour an a half doing something we could easily have spent the whole day exploring, but on the balance, a completely outstanding and satisfying trip.
While Machu Picchu is clearly the highlight of this itinerary, the Sacred Valley and Cuzco region offer fascinating and beautiful sites with which I was previously unfamiliar. The program is only for those willing to travel intensely and do a considerable amount of walking over roughish terrain, but I'm no fit athlete and did fine. The program leader Vlad and other guides were superb. This is a topnotch program and a chance to fulfill a lifelong dream for many.
Great trip to take advantage of. There is a wide range of activities and breathtaking moments! Easy to navigate.
Culture, history, beauty and good food---what more could you want in a trip?
This trip was fantastic! Although the my primary purpose was a much anticipated visit to Machu Picchu, I fell in love with all of Peru. This trip was an excellent mixture of history, active site visits, food to die for, and wonderful experts. Transportation by air, train and bus were all top notch. Our daily walking tours were just the right amount for me to keep active but not overtire. I must say that I had no idea that Peru is such a food destination and we were served delicious meals throughout the week. The cleanliness of the whole country was unexpected, our group of participants were delightful and the tour guides were exceptional. Victor, who was with us all week, was very attentive to the group and any individual needs. As a solo traveler, and there were many women traveling solo on this trip, Victor made us feel very comfortable and safe. Sheila was with us for 3 days and both of these people went out of their way to make this an awesome experience. Alan, who provided the first morning’s lecture about Peru’s history and its’ social and political evolution was quite interesting. I would love to return to Peru again to continue learning more about this beautiful country and the cultures which make it so special.
Pretty much everyone on our trip felt that this program was one of the best they had taken.
The trip to Machu Picchu was an exceptional experience. Seeing this site is nothing less than awe inspiring. Overall, this was an outstanding trip, very informative, and well organized by highly knowledgeable tour guides.
What an amazing trip! Our main guides Victor and Sheila (and all the other guides) were WONDERFUL!!! They were knowledgeable of everything around us. I have learned so much. They were accommodating, patient, friendly and always available. I have participated in a few Roadscholar trips and this was one of the best. Such a variety and diversity of activities from the Pachamama ceremony and lunch with local families, and cooking demonstrations to visiting historic sites and authentic restaurants! Nothing was staged; everything was a true immersion into the Peruvian culture. I will definitely book more trips with Roadscholar.
I fell in love with Peru! The citizens were friendly and cooperative, and I never felt unsafe. The walking stick was the best purchase I made, and it was invaluable on the walks around the cities and especially navigating the steps at Machu Picchu. This was one of the best trips of my life!
This program exceeded my expectations. Our group leader was outstanding. The fellow travelers were all wonderful. I saw so many unbelievable sites.
Lots of variety, well-paced, authentic experience of Peru. I would highly recommend this trip to anyone interested in Peru's history and culture.
The pace was full everyday. Presented a good balance of present day Peru with the history of the Incas. If I had time on my calendar, I would enroll in the program again.
Wonderful trip. Outstanding program and guides. Enrique (Mike), Miguel and Edward were all personable, knowledgeable and very accommodating and flexible. Edward provided a 3rd guide to Machu Picchu for those less able to climb so high. She (Vilma) took the few of us on a less taxing but equally interesting route. When a local strike closed the road leading to our restaurant lunch reservation and then back to Cusco, Edward arrange for a quickly-arriving extensive bag lunch to be eaten on the bus and an alternate afternoon program. Nice group of fellow participants.
A great trip to an amazing place! The Road Scholar staff did a good job and the days were filled with interesting experiences. Great for trip for anyone who loves to explore a new culture in depth.
FABULOUS!!!! This was my first international trip with Road Scholar. I traveled solo and was a little concerned about being alone. But, the people in my group now seem like personal friends. The leader and the experts were exceptional. They took care of us from the moment we stepped off the plane in Lima to getting us to our airlines for our return trip home. Our leader, Kike and our expert guides accommodated everyone in the group. The pace was very nice and the activities well planned. I did become a bit tired, but that was because I didn't want to miss out on anything. We were able to rest whenever we needed. This trip was absolutely a 5 star. I have now experienced the best. I can only hope future Road Scholar trips will stand up to this one. Thank you Michael (Pretty Boy) and Edward, our field experts. You were amazing! Thank you Kike. You made our trip seamless and relaxing. And thank you fellow travelers. It was a joy meeting each of you and sharing this experience with you. Elizabeth
You may dream of Manchu Pichhu and this trip offers you it and more! City culture along with country vistas and activities give you an understanding of the variety of lifestyles in Peru. You’ll share your experiences with active, engaged people who want to keep learning. Our group was fantastic to know.
The Perspectives of Peru: Discover Lima, Cusco, Yucay & Machu Picchu program is exceptional: interesting, well paced and organized and very enjoyable. One wants to go back for more!
A wonderful experience that far exceeded my expectations.
This is an amazing trip! We were so blessed by our caring, knowledgeable guides. Our Group Leader, Holger "Paco" Mayorca has amazing leadership skills. He and the local guides, especially Edward, enriched our experience every day with their deep knowledge of the rich history and culture of Peru. In addition, master professionals provided lectures in history, art, music, economics, cuisine and agriculture. We were a diverse group of people from all over the United States and they too contributed to the richness of our experience! This is a trip of a lifetime!
An absolutely, awesome experience!! Juan Carlos and Vlad are excellent guides - two of the best I have ever had. They are compassionate, caring, generous with time and energy, and extremely knowledgeable about Peru and Incan culture. The experiences on this trip are varied with the culmination being Machu Picchu. It is an amazing place - full of history, engineering genius, and wonderment. Peru is an interesting and diverse country, full of kind and generous people. I highly recommend this trip.
I checked off hiking Machu Picchu from my bucket list but this program was so much more. It fueled my curiosity about the Inca culture and I ended up buying 3 books on them before I left. I fully intend to do another program on the Incas and their influence on South America
This trip was the experience of a lifetime! All of the instructors were engaging, funny, informative, and answered everyone's questions. Despite a significant weather delay at the Lima airport, our leader, Enrique, managed to rearrange a few activities so we did not miss out on anything. I would highly recommend this program!
The trip exceeded my expectations with the many cultural experiences beyond what I knew would be a life changing visit to Machu Picchu. The group leaders and instructors were stellar - professional, knowledgeable, friendly - with a passion for Peru that was infectious. The program is a great value with many experiences packed into seven days. I came back with new knowledge about the Incas and pre-Incan peoples, the modern day Sacred Valley, cosmopolitan Lima, Andean weaving traditions, Peruvian food and music, and the beautiful Andes and Peruvian coast.
I have just returned from Peru!! What an absolutely incredible life changing trip. I very strongly recommend this trip to anyone interested in experiencing this powerful region of the world guided by experienced, thoughtful, knowledgeable, and delightful people.
Number 1 on my bucket list just checked off. Fabulous trip and just love the people in Peru! This trip also gives you such a perspective on the depth of history and culture we have in the Americas. Don’t hesitate to go.
A wonderful trip! Varied learning opportunities, varied contexts--coast, highlands. The gem of course was Machu Picchu but the last day in Cusco at Qorikancha was icing on the cake. Be sure to take poncho for rain and trekking pole for rocky walks! So much is included in Road Scholar trips, logistical ease for participants.
Outstanding program packed with new experiences and new friends.
My life-long dream of visiting Machu Picchu was realized in December 2017 with a brilliantly organized Road Scholar trip. The planning from start to finish took into consideration altitudes and stamina of group members. I learned about the country and history of Peru and enjoyed the excellent cuisine.
This was a wonderful program, from the efficiency of the logistics, the great food and accommodations and most importantly, the lectures, guides and sites visited. I can mark off a long term bucket list item as complete - visiting Machu Picchu.
If visiting Peru and Machupichu is on your bucket list, this is the trip for you.
I'm more likely to do my next international trip with Road Scholar than on my own-- and to date I've always enjoyed arranging trips on my own. Every day was fantastic so I'll talk about 1 example. Gustavo "Tito" Leon did a musical instrument presentation in Cuzco. I never imagined that he was going to be able to play ALL of the few dozen instruments that he had on display at the start of his presentation! I'm sad that I ran out of storage on my phone after 10 minutes of filming, and that the same thing happened to 2 other family members' phones during Tito's presentation. This was one gem that there's no way I'd have stumbled into on my own with any amount of research.
A fantastic trip, exceeding my expectations!
I so enjoyed this trip because of the diversity of cultural events and the fast pace of the activities. This was not all about Machu Picchu although that was surely a special part of the experience. The logistics of this trip were complex: internal flights, trains and buses (including program changes due to the 10-year census!). But Vlad, our tour leader handled it all seamlessly. Our group was terrific; the included single supplement was a nice bonus.
I would recommend this trip to anyone who loves being with all kinds of people. Peru is amazing and so was this program. Thanks Vlad and Juan for making us feel so much at home!
Don't miss this trip! Peru is wonderful and the Andes are magnificent. Our days were packed with interesting visits and lectures. Great accommodations, great food and I very much appreciated the efforts of our leader and guide to make this such a great tour -- the best I've ever been on!