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Adventure Tours   >   South America Adventure Tours   >  Inca Adventure: Cusco, Machu Picchu & the Best Views Ever

Inca Adventure: Cusco, Machu Picchu & the Best Views Ever Adventure Tour

South America

  • Peru

Get immersed head to toe in the land of the Incas on this seven-day, hostel-based adventure high up in the Andes. Explore deep into Cusco on an insider's tour of the city's markets, cobblestone streets, and eye-popping plazas before heading into the Sacred Valley. Make some stops at lesser-visited (but equally awesome) Inca ruins, then hike up to a spectacular waterfall. Next, hop on the train to Machu Picchu for a guided tour of these legendary mountaintop ruins. After your life has been changed forever, head back to Cusco for more bucket-list optional activities like trekking to Rainbow Mountain.


A Couple of Rules  

Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on any trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for our travellers. Our philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter, and in particular the local people who make the world the special place it is. The exploitation of prostitutes is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our CEOs have the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they use prostitutes.


Feedback  

After your travels, we want to hear from you! Your feedback information is so important to us that we'll give you 5% off the price of your next G Adventures trip if your feedback is completed on-line within 30 days of finishing your trip. Your tour evaluation will be e-mailed to you 24 hours after the conclusion of your trip. If you do not receive the tour evaluation link in the days after your tour has finished, please drop us a line at [email protected] and we will send it on to you.


Spending Money  

Every traveller is different and therefore spending money requirements will vary. Some travellers may drink more than others while other travellers like to purchase more souvenirs than most. Please consider your own spending habits when it comes to allowing for drinks, shopping and tipping. Please also remember the following specific recommendations when planning your trip.


Tipping  

It is customary in Latin America to tip service providers such as waiters, at approximately 10%, depending on the service. Tipping is an expected - though not compulsory - component of your tour program and an expression of satisfaction with the persons who have assisted you on your tour. Although it may not be customary to you, it is of considerable significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels. There are several times during the trip where there is opportunity to tip the local guides or drivers we use. Recommendations for tipping drivers and local guides would range from $5-10 USD per day depending on the quality and length of the service; ask your CEO for specific recommendations based on the circumstances and culture.

Also at the end of each trip if you felt your G Adventures CEO did an outstanding job, tipping is appreciated. The amount is entirely a personal preference, however as a guideline $20-25 USD per person, per week can be used.


Health  

Please note inoculations may be required for the country visited. It is your responsibility to consult with your travel doctor for up to date medical travel information well before departure.

You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information well before departure. We recommend that you carry a First Aid kit and hand sanitizers / antibacterial wipes as well as any personal medical requirements. Please be aware that quite often we are in remote areas and away from medical facilities, and for legal reasons our leaders are prohibited from administering any type of drug including headache tablets, antibiotics, etc. When selecting your trip please carefully read the brochure and itinerary and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please refer to the Physical and Culture Shock ratings for trip specific information. G Adventures reserves the right to exclude any traveller from all or part of a trip without refund if in the reasonable opinion of our CEO they are unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group.

Please note your Adventure travels to high altitude. This is medically defined as anything over 8,000 feet (2,440 meters). Most people can travel to 8,000 feet with minimal effects. However, everyone reacts to altitude differently and altitude sickness can on set with some people irrespective of fitness and age. For details on how to best prepare and what to do in the unlikely event you are effected on your Adventure, please consult your physician.


Group Leader  

CEO (Chief Experience Officer) throughout, local guides.


Safety and Security  

Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before departure. We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe keeping of your passport, air tickets, travellers' cheques, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home - you won't need it while travelling. Many of the hotels we use have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage. When travelling on a group trip, please note that your CEO has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it is deemed necessary due to safety concerns. Your CEO will accompany you on all included activities. During your trip you will have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. While your CEO will assist you with options available in a given location please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your itinerary, and we offer no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgment when selecting an activity in your free time. Although the cities visited on tour are generally safe during the day, there can be risks to wandering throughout any major city at night. It is our recommendation to stay in small groups and to take taxis to and from restaurants, or during night time excursions.

Protests and Demonstrations- Protests and demonstrations, even those that are well intended, have the potential to turn violent with no warning. Counter protests can also turn violent. Action by security forces to disperse demonstrators and protesters may occur at any time. If you are in an area where demonstrators or protesters are gathering, avoid the temptation of staying for a good photo opportunity and leave the area immediately.

Water based activities have an element of danger and excitement built into them. We recommend only participating in water based activities when accompanied by a guide(s). We make every reasonable effort to ensure the fun and adventurous element of any water based activities (in countries with varying degrees of operating standards) have a balanced approach to safety. It is our policy not to allow our CEOs to make arrangements on your behalf for water based activities that are not accompanied by guide(s).

Swimming, including snorkeling, is always at your own risk.

We take all prudent measures in relation to your safety. For ways to further enhance your personal safety while traveling, please visit:


www.gadventures.com/travel-resources/safety/


Optional Activities  

Aguas Calientes
- Hot Springs Visit (6USD per person)
- Mandor Waterfall Hike (20PEN per person)

Inca Trail
- 1-Day Inca Trail Hike

Cusco
- Cusco City Tour (45PEN per person)
- Cusco Tourist Ticket (130PEN per person)
- Horseback Riding (150PEN per person)
- Rainbow Mountain Hike - Full-day Trip
- Mountain Biking
- Inka Museum (10PEN per person)


Travel Insurance  

Travel insurance is compulsory in order to participate on any of our trips. When travelling on a group trip, you will not be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance has been sighted by your leader, who will take note of your insurance details. When selecting a travel insurance policy we require that at a minimum you are covered for medical expenses including emergency evacuation and repatriation. A minimum coverage of USD200,000 is required. G Adventures can provide you with the appropriate coverage. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. Some tours include adventure activities that require extra coverage (e.g. crampon use); please review your itinerary and make sure that you are covered for all included activities. If you have credit card insurance we require proof of purchase of the trip (a receipt of credit card statement) with a credit card in your name. Contact your bank for details of their participating insurer, the level of coverage and emergency contact telephone number.


International Flights  

Check-in times and baggage allowances/restrictions vary by airline and can change at any time. For the most up-to-date information for your flight, please contact your airline. We recommend checking in online in advance to avoid potential delays at the airport.


Max Pax  

24


Emergency Fund  

Please also make sure you have access to at least an additional USD $200 (or equivalent) as an 'emergency' fund, to be used when circumstances outside our control (ex. a natural disaster) require a change to our planned route. This is a rare occurrence!


Minimum Age  

Minimum age of 18 years for this trip.


Planeterra Foundation - the non-profit partner of G Adventures  

Planeterra International Foundation is a non-profit organization committed to turning travel into impact by helping local communities earn an income from tourism. Planeterra connects underserved local communities to the benefits of tourism by developing and supporting small community-owned businesses. These businesses support Indigenous people, empower women, grant youth access to employment opportunities, and protect the environment. Planeterra also works to ensure these businesses have a thriving customer base by integrating their projects into G Adventures' itineraries globally.
G Adventures is Planeterra's largest corporate donor, covering all operating costs, so 100% of your donation will bring opportunity to people in need.

G Adventures Dollar-a-day Program - Make Every Day Count - Turn your travel into impact with Planeterra Foundation.

Did you know? Most communities around the world do not benefit from tourism. Give back to the places you visit on your travels by creating opportunities for local people to earn an income, and protect the environment.

Make every day count by donating $1/day for the length of your trip, and join us in empowering the communities you will visit when you travel. 100% of your donation goes directly to Planeterra projects.


Newsletter  

Our adventure travel e-newsletter is full of travel news, trip information, interesting stories and contests. To avoid missing out on special offers and updates from G Adventures, subscribe at www.gadventures.com/newsletters/

Stay current on how our company invests in our global community through our foundation - Planeterra. Sign up for Planeterra's monthly news to learn more about how to give back and support the people and places we love to visit.


Arrival Complications  

We don't expect any problems, and nor should you, but if for any reason you are unable to commence your trip as scheduled, please refer to the emergency contact details provided in this dossier and contact us as soon as possible. If you have a pre-booked transfer, and you have not made contact with our representative within 30 minutes of clearing customs and immigration, we recommend that you make your own way to the Starting Point hotel, following the Joining Instructions. Please apply to your travel agent on your return for a refund of the transfer cost if this occurs.


Highlights  

Explore the backstreets of Cusco on an insider's tour of the city, Check out some lesser-visited archaeological sites before hiking to a stunning waterfall in the Sacred Valley, Wander through the temples and terraces of Machu Picchu with an expert local guide, Take advantage of free time for optional activities


Itinerary Disclaimer  

While it is our intention to adhere to the route described below, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable to make alterations. The itinerary is brief, as we never know exactly where our journey will take us. Due to our style of travel and the regions we visit, travel can be unpredictable. The Trip Details document is a general guide to the tour and region and any mention of specific destinations or wildlife is by no means a guarantee that they will be visited or encountered. Aboard expedition trips visits to research stations depend on final permission.

Additionally, any travel times listed are approximations only and subject to vary due to local circumstances.


Dossier Disclaimer  

The information in this trip details document has been compiled with care and is provided in good faith. However it is subject to change, and does not form part of the contract between the client and the operator. The itinerary featured is correct at time of printing. It may differ slightly to the one in the brochure. Occasionally our itineraries change as we make improvements that stem from past travellers, comments and our own research. Sometimes it can be a small change like adding an extra meal along the itinerary. Sometimes the change may result in us altering the tour for the coming year. Ultimately, our goal is to provide you with the most rewarding experience. Please note that our brochure is usually released in November each year. If you have booked from the previous brochure you may find there have been some changes to the itinerary.

VERY IMPORTANT: Please ensure that you print a final copy of your Trip Details to review a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans.


Meals  

Eating is a big part of traveling. G Adventures understands the importance of breakfast to start your day, we strive to include a basic breakfast wherever possible. A typical breakfast may include toast, coffee and tea, however this may vary depending on the city. Should breakfast not be included, your CEO can suggest some local options.

Travelling with G Adventures you experience the vast array of wonderful food that is available out in the world. Generally meals are not included in the trip price when there is a choice of eating options, to give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat. It also gives you more budgeting flexibility, though generally food is cheap. Our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other's company. There is no obligation to do this though. Your CEO will be able to suggest favourite restaurants during your trip. While trekking in remote regions etc. food is included, plentiful and made of fresh local ingredients.

For all trips please refer to the meals included and budget information for included meals and meal budgets.


Packing List  

Documents:
• Flight info (required) (Printouts of e-tickets may be required at the border)
• Insurance info (required) (With photocopies)
• Passport (required) (With photocopies)
• Vouchers and pre-departure information (required)
• Visas or vaccination certificates (With photocopies)

Essentials:
• Toiletries (required) (Shampoo, bodywash, soap, etc.)
• Binoculars (optional)
• Camera (With extra memory cards and batteries)
• Cash, credit and debit cards
• Day pack (Used for daily excursions or short overnights)
• Ear plugs
• First-aid kit (should contain lip balm with sunscreen, sunscreen, whistle, Aspirin, Ibuprofen, bandaids/plasters, tape, anti-histamines, antibacterial gel/wipes, antiseptic cream, Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrhea, rehydration powder, water purification tablets or drops, insect repellent, sewing kit, extra prescription drugs you may be taking)
• Flashlight/torch (Headlamps are ideal)
• Fleece top/sweater
• Footwear
• Hat
• Locks for bags
• Long pants/jeans
• Moneybelt
• Outlet adapter
• Personal entertainment (Reading and writing materials, cards, music player, etc.)
• Reusable water bottle
• Shirts/t-shirts
• Sleepwear
• Small travel towel
• Sunglasses
• Swimwear
• Watch and alarm clock
• Waterproof backpack cover
• Windproof rain jacket

Health & Safety:
• Hand sanitizer (required)
• Face masks (Clients will be only be required to wear a face mask where it is mandated by local regulations.)
• Pen (Please bring your own pen for filling out documents.)
• Quick Covid Test/Antigen Test (optional)

Light Hiking:
• Hiking boots/sturdy walking shoes
• Hiking pants (Convertible/Zip-off and quick dry recommended)
• Sleeping bag liner/sleep sheet

Warm Weather:
• Sandals/flip-flops
• Shorts/skirts (Longer shorts/skirts are recommended)
• Sturdy water shoes/sandals
• Sun hat/bandana
• Swimwear


Money Exchange  

Debit and credit cards are very useful for cash advances, but you must remember to bring your PIN number (be aware that many ATM machines only accept 4-digit PINs.). Both Cirrus and Plus system cards are the most widely accepted debit cards. While ATMs are widely available, there are no guarantees that your credit or debit cards will work in all of the ATMs in Latin America due to their affiliation with certain card systems. Credit cards can be used in major cities and towns ONLY but please do not rely on them as a method of payment because they are generally not widely accepted. You should be aware that to purchase products or services on a credit card a fee of 5%-10% usually applies.

Do not rely on credit or debit cards as your only source of money. A combination of US dollar cash and cards is best. Always take more rather than less, as you don't want to spoil the trip by constantly feeling short of funds.

CURRENCY EXCHANGE TIP: Please be advised that slightly torn notes, notes that have been heavily marked or are faded may be difficult to exchange. It is best to bring notes in fairly good condition, in denominations lower than 100USD (or equivalent).

As currency exchange rates can fluctuate often we ask that you refer to the following website for daily exchange rates: www.xe.com


Important Notes  

1. MACHU PICCHU REGULATIONS
Current and correct passport details are required at time of confirmation. For more details please see the following page . Please also note that regulations have been implemented for all visitors to Machu Picchu which require that different circuits be followed within the site as a way to relieve crowding. The new circuit-based entrance tickets are available on a first come first serve basis. We will do all that is possible to get everyone traveling in a group on the same route, but be aware that it is possible that members of the same group might be visiting Machu Picchu on a different circuit and not be together during this visit. Rest assured that regardless of the circuit you will enjoy the beauty and grandeur of the site.


Group Leader Description  

All G Adventures group trips are accompanied by one of our group leaders, a G Adventures representative, or an expedition team. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. They will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the countries visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. We also use local guides where we think more specific knowledge will add to the enjoyment of the places we are visiting- we think it's the best of both worlds.


Solo Travellers  

We believe single travellers should not have to pay more to travel so our group trips are designed for shared accommodation and do not involve a single supplement. Single travellers joining group trips are paired in twin or multi-share accommodation with someone of the same sex for the duration of the trip. Some of our Independent trips are designed differently and single travellers on these itineraries must pay the single trip price.


Laundry  

Laundry facilities are offered by some of our hostels for a charge. There will be times when you may want to or have to do your own laundry so we suggest you bring non-polluting/biodegradable soap.


What's Included  

Your Welcome Moment: Welcome Moment - Meet Your CEO and Group. Insiders walking tour of Cusco with local lunch. Visit Killarumiyoq and Iglesia Ñaupa archaeological sites. Hike to Perolniyoc Waterfall in the Sacred Valley. Train to Machu Picchu. Machu Picchu guided tour. All transport between destinations and to/from included activities.


Group Size Notes  

Max 24, avg 16


Meals Included  

6 breakfasts, 2 lunches


Transport  

Public bus, train, private van.


Emergency Contact  

Should you need to contact us during a situation of dire need, it is best to first call either the G Adventures Local Representative (if one is listed below) or our G Adventures Local Office. If for any reason you do not receive an immediate answer, please leave a detailed message and contact information, so they may return your call and assist you as soon as possible.

AIRPORT TRANSFER
If you have purchased an arrival through G Adventures or if an arrival transfer is included in the cost of your tour, please note that:

Your arrival transfer has been arranged based on flight information provided to us. If you are advised of a flight schedule change or flight cancellation within 48 hours of your scheduled arrival time, please call the emergency contact number to advise of your new arrival flight information. If you do not, we will not be able to rearrange your arrival transfer and you will need to make your own way to the starting hotel at your own expense. If your arrival transfer does not arrive within 30 minutes after you have exited the arrivals area please take a taxi to your start point hotel. 

EMERGENCY CONTACT NUMBERS
G Adventures Office Lima, Peru.
During office hours (Weekdays, 9-6pm Local Time): +51 1 241 1650 or 01 241 1650 (from mobile within Peru) or 241 1650 (from payphone within Peru)
After hours Emergency number: +51 99 758 2712, (WhatsApp Available)

If you are unable for any reason to contact our local office, please call the numbers listed below which will connect you directly with our Sales team who will happily assist you. Hours of operation by region can be found here.


Toll-free, North America only: 1 888 800 4100
Calls from UK: 0344 272 0000
Calls from Germany: 0800 365 1000
Calls from Australia: 1 300 796 618
Calls from New Zealand: 0800 333 307
Outside North America, Australia, New Zealand, Germany and the UK: +1 416 260 0999


Visas and Entry Requirements  

All countries require a valid passport (with a minimum 6 months validity). Contact your local embassy or consulate for the most up-to-date visa requirements, or see your travel agent. It is your own responsibility to have the correct travel documentation. Visa requirements for your trip will vary depending on where you are from and where you are going. We keep the following information up to date as far as possible, but rules do change and sometimes without warning. While we provide the following information in good faith, it is vital that you check the information yourself and understand that you are fully responsible for your own visa requirements.

Visa information specific to your destination and nationality can be found in our Important Pre-Departure Information page here


Accommodation  

Hostels (4 nts), Hotel (2 nts)


Joining Instructions  

For details of your joining hotel please refer to your tour voucher, G Account, the G Adventures App or contact your travel agent.

If you would like to book an airport Arrival transfer for your tour, please contact our Sales Team or your Travel Agent in advance of travel.

If you have paid in advance for an arrival transfer, a G Adventures representative will be at the airport to meet you. If for any reason you are not met at the airport, please call our local support line. If you are unable to make contact for whatever reason, please make your way to the joining point hotel via taxi.


Please note that day 1 is an arrival day and no activities have been planned on this day.

Upon arrival to your Joining Hotel (note that check-in time will be in the afternoon), look for a note or bulletin board in the reception with a note from your CEO. This note will give the details of your Welcome Meeting on day 1 (usually between 5pm and 7pm), where you will get a chance to meet your CEO and other travellers, as well as learn more about how the tour will run. If you don't see a note, please ask reception for details!

If you are arriving later and will miss the Welcome Meeting, your CEO will leave a note at reception for you with any information you may need, and with morning instructions for the next day.


What to Take  

Most people automatically assume that the weather is hot in South America, but because of the higher altitude in the Andes, the temperature can feel quite cold, especially at night.

We recommend using a backpack for your convenience, or a medium-sized suitcase if you prefer. A daypack is also essential for carrying everyday items. Space is limited on transportation, so there is a limit of one main piece of luggage per person. You will be responsible for carrying your own luggage.


About Accommodation  

Accommodation will be primarily in multi-share hostels (typically 6-8 people per room), with a choice of mixed gender and female-only dorms as well as available upgrades to twin-share rooms (same gender).

Some rooming exceptions may apply due to the unique nature of the itineraries and of the hostels themselves, which have been specifically chosen to give local flavour to your trip. Please see the full itinerary description and the Rooming Exception section below for any specific exceptions to the rooming that may apply to this tour.

Please note that hot water shortages and power outages can be fairly common in Peru (even in upgraded hotels and private homes). We appreciate your patience and understanding that these occurrences are outside of our control.


Finishing Point Instructions  

If you would like to book an airport Departure transfer for your tour, please contact our Sales Team or your Travel Agent in advance of travel.

Day 1 Cusco

Arrive at any time, and kick back at the hostel or head out to explore the city before meeting up with fellow Roamies in the evening. After the welcome meeting you've got plenty of amazing food and drink options nearby the hostel and around the main plaza - who's in?

Day 2 Cusco

Bust out the walking shoes as today we're going to hit the pavement! Set out on foot with your CEO to the San Pedro market before heading up into the narrow cobblestone backstreets to check out the Sapantiana aqueduct and stairway waterfall, a hidden gem of the city. Continue to San Blas for killer views and scarf down a delicious local lunch at one of the restaurants near the small plaza. Take the rest of the day to continue exploring or grab a drink near the main plaza and watch the world go by.

Day 3 Cusco/Ollantaytambo

You may have seen the typical day tours to the Sacred Valley, well today is definitely not one of them! Head out in a private ride and make the first stop at the lesser-visited (but awesome) Inca ruins of Killarumiyoq, a sanctuary dedicated to the moon. After a visit with our expert guide we'll carry on to another site at Iglesia Ñaupa before setting off on foot along a trail through the mountains to the beautiful waterfall of Perolniyoc. Soak in the scenery while eating a tasty boxed lunch before hiking back out to the bus and continuing to the nearby town of Ollantaytambo. Still want more? Check out the Ollantaytambo ruins at sunset, have a drink at a cafe or just hang out with friends at the hostel.

Day 4 Ollantaytambo/Aguas Calientes

All aboard! Jump on the morning train and sit back for stunning views of the valley along the Urubamba River. For the hikers amongst us who have pre-booked the 1-day Inca Trail option, you'll get off the train early at km 104 to hike to the Sun Gate with a local guide and see Machu Picchu in the afternoon before meeting up with everyone again in the evening. For the rest of us, we'll arrive in town before lunch and will have the rest of the day to explore, shop, see a nearby waterfall or soak in the local hot springs. Don't stay up too late tonight though, tomorrow's the big day!

Day 5 Aguas Calientes/Cusco

Rise and Shine! The early start today might be a bit painful but it's more than worth it, we swear. Before dawn, take a bus from town up the mountain to Machu Picchu for a guided tour with our local expert. Grab some lunch in Aguas Calientes at one of the many restaurants and then head back to Ollantaytambo by train to catch the bus back to Cusco. If you haven't noticed by now, the nightlife is pretty great in Cusco, and if not.. well, now's your chance to see for yourself.

Day 6 Cusco

Free day in Cusco, yes please! For those that have not gotten enough hiking and feed-worthy moments, you could take on the full-day trek to Rainbow Mountain. Otherwise there are plenty of other things to keep you busy like mountain biking, or exploring the city's museums, markets and shops - or you may just want to relax at the hostel with friends. It's pretty win-win no matter what.

Day 7 Cusco

Depart at any time, or maybe extend your stay in the hostel for a few more days to keep the good times rolling.

Details

Prices from: €623.20

Duration: 7 Days

Physical Grading: 3 - Average

Service Level: Basic

Travel Style: Roamies by Hostelworld & G Adventures

Trip Type: Small Group



Call Us: 01 2311889



TRAVEL AWARE - STAYING SAFE AND HEALTHY ABROAD

The Department of Foreign Affairs has up-to-date advice for Irish citizens on staying safe and healthy abroad. For more security, local laws, health, passport and visa information see https://www.dfa.ie/travel/travel-advice/ and follow dfatravelwise