A small group journey for women

Incas and Amazon

Peru | Departing July 2024

A journey through the heart of Peru

Beginning in the vibrant, gastronomic city of Lima, our Incas & Amazon tour of Peru will at once immerse you in the country’s rich cultural diversity and thrill you with its stunning natural beauty and soaring landscapes.

Once hailed as the ‘City of Kings’ by the Spanish Conquistadors, Lima is a mix of colonial heritage, Latin passion, and glamour with its fine museums and monuments, excellent cuisine and pumping nighclubs. On this Journeys for Women tour we start off in the beating heart of this metropolis before heading to the Sacred Valley and the beautiful stretch of small villages and ancient ruins spread across the broad plains and rugged mountain slopes that are still sacred to the Indigenous people of Peru.

We visit Moray’s amphitheatre-like terraces, the Inca salt mines of Maras, the fortress of Ollantaytambo, Pisac’s colourful markets brimming with handmade textiles, pottery and local crafts, and along the way meet local families who keep traditions of hat-making, textile weaving, coffee making, farming and traditional Quechua cooking alive for future generations.

Our tour offers fitter travellers the opportunity to hike parts of the Lares Valley through shepherding communities and remote villages, as well as parts of the classic Inca trail in the footsteps of ancient peoples. If hiking is not your vibe, you will go on a scenic train ride along the Urubamba River and rollicking bus trip to the architectural beauty of the UNESCO World Heritage site and citadel of Machu Picchu. At the end of each day, unwind and share your stories and experiences over dinner and wine with your travelling companions.

From here we travel to Cusco, Peru’s historical heart and former capital of the Inca Empire. Surrounded by impressive Inca archaeological sites, Cusco and its surrounds offer insights into the Inca civilization’s engineering brilliance. After exploring Cusco and meeting its locals, our journey then takes us to Iquitos where you will spend the next 4 days on board the Delfin III, a luxury cruise complete with plenty of pampering, soft adventure, and beautiful landscapes of remote rainforest locations. Enjoy a wide range of optional excursions, including nature walks, swimming with dolphins, kayaking down calm streams and fishing for piranhas at sunset.

Our Journeys for Women ‘Incas & Amazon’ tour is the perfect mix of luxury and traditional adventure travel, a chance to discover new frontiers and delve into a fascinating and exciting culture.

You will love

  • Visiting Machu Picchu
  • Small, escorted group
  • Magnificent landscapes
  • Meeting traditional Peruvian people
  • Navigating the Amazon by boat
  • Hiking the Lares Valley
  • Lively Lima & historic Cusco

14 UNFORGETTABLE DAYS

DAY 1 | SUN 14 JUL | ARRIVE PERU - LIMA 2NTS

Arrive in Peru’s capital and privately transfer to our beautiful boutique hotel in Barranco, the bohemian district in Lima, known for its artistic flair, colonial architecture, and vibrant cultural scene. Situated along the Pacific coast, it offers a unique blend of historic charm and modern creativity.

Check-in, freshen up and regroup for a Welcome Dinner hosted at our hotel.

Meals included: Dinner

 

DAY 2 | MON 15 JUL | LIMA - Cathedrals, Museums & Colonial Lima

We begin our visit of this magnificent city with an exploration of Colonial Lima.

Beginning in the Main Square, we head off on foot to explore the exteriors of the Government Palace, the Cathedral, and the City Hall, all examples of Lima’s still-present colonial architectural opulence. Inside the Cathedral and its numerous chapels, we´ll discover various architectural styles and learn about the religious history of Peru. Continuing on, our tour takes us to an iconic home where history and art converge. No other house in South America can boast a history like Casa Aliaga, where the same family continues to live since the official foundation of the city and, in the case of the Aliaga family, where the family have lived for 16 generations and for more than 480 years. Beyond the rich family history, Casa Aliaga is a jewel of colonial and republican architecture. Its environs show us the styles that were fashionable in the 17th to 19th centuries in Lima and it houses one of Lima’s most important private art collections.

Afterwards, we will head to Larco Museum, an eighteenth-century Vice regal mansion that houses more than 3,000 years of Peru´s pre-Columbian history. The museum boasts a supremely fine collection of gold and silver jewelry and worship paraphernalia. The museum also contains a famous collection of erotic ceramic tomb art that gives insights into various aspects of pre-Columbian sexuality. We will then enjoy a delicious lunch at the restaurant located in the museum gardens, before heading back to our hotel for the remainder of the day at leisure.

Meals included: Breakfast & lunch

 

DAY 3 | TUES 16 JUL | CUSCO & SACRED VALLEY - Sarapampa & Pisac Markets

This morning after breakfast we will transfer to Lima’s airport for our flight to Cusco.

On arrival we will drive directly to Hacienda Sarapampa, where host Maria del Pilar Sumar will give us a warm welcome to her home, and we will discover the legacy of three generations of one of the most traditional families of the Sacred Valley. Learn about the generational experiences and the work that lies behind the production of Cusco’s giant white corn, a unique species that only grows in this area. And finally, enjoy a unique experience in the form of traditional cooking and lunch based upon local organic products, the legacy of farmers devoted to their land.

A few miles farther along, we will reach Pisac, a beautiful place where Incan and Colonial influences have found a perfect balance and created the unique way of life of the local inhabitants. You will get a chance to explore this quaint town, famous for its artisan markets where you can find extraordinarily fine jewelry and ceramic and textile craftwork.

After a busy day, we head to our Lodge where we will relax before meeting up again for dinner.

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch & dinner

 

DAY 4 | WED 17 JUL | CUSCO & SACRED VALLEY - Urubamba farmers market & Maras' Salt Pans

Our day commences with a vibrant visit to Urubamba’s bustling farmers market, an energetic hub where local produce and traditions shine. Here, the valley’s spirit thrives as farmers and artisans proudly exhibit their wares, fostering a tight-knit sense of community and heritage.

Our journey then takes us to the breathtaking Maras salt pans, an ancient wonder etched into the hills, showcasing the remarkable harmony between humanity and nature that spans generations. Continuing to Maras town, we meet Elvira Argandoña, the daughter of Teodosio Argandoña, a revered traditional hat maker. Elvira carries forward her father’s legacy at his workshop, preserving Maras’ distinctive straw hat craftsmanship and the fading tapestry of tradition.

We will then return to our lodge in Lamay for lunch, which offers a taste of heritage: Pachamanca—a fusion of tradition and ritual named from Quechua “earth” and “pot.” This Cultural Heritage treasure unites meats, vibrant South American veggies, and volcanic stones in an underground oven—a symphony of flavors with earthy undertones. Celebrating unity and our connection to nature, Pachamanca embodies communal festivities and post-harvest rituals. It’s a savory homage to our planet’s generosity and history.

Afternoon at leisure followed by a brief on the Lares adventure ahead and dinner.

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch & dinner

 

DAY 5 | THU 18 JUL | SACRED VALLEY & LARES

The day begins with a visit to the small town of Lamay followed by a scenic drive into the heart of the Lares Valley. Your first stop will be Ancasmarca for a guided tour of this seldom-visited archeological site. Afterwards, choose a visit with the expert textile weavers in a remote village OR a hike amidst turquoise blue lakes and towering peaks to the remote village of Huacahuasi to spend the night.

This evening there is an optional yin restorative yoga session at our lodge before a hosted dinner.

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch & dinner

 

DAY 6 | FRI 19 JUL | SACRED VALLEY & LARES - cont'd

Begin the day with a scenic drive from Huacahuasi to the remote village of Huilloc. From there, choose a morning hike from Huilloc to Pumamarka, OR explore the village of Huilloc and nearby sheepherding community before regrouping for lunch and a midday exploration of the Pumamarka archaeological site.

After lunch, choose to hike from Pumamarka to Ollantaytambo OR drive and spend the afternoon exploring Ollantaytambo’s maze-like alleys and passageways.

Afternoon hikers will meet the rest of the group at the hotel upon arrival in the Sacred Valley.

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch & dinner

 

DAY 7 | SAT 20 JUL | SACRED VALLEY & MACHU PICCHU

Begin your day with a guided exploration of Ollantaytambo fortress and ceremonial site before embarkation on a scenic train ride along the Urubamba River to the charming town of Aguas Calientes. Upon our arrival, we will board the bus that will take us to the entrance gate of the Machu Picchu citadel. Rediscovered for the modern world by Hiram Bingham more than a century ago, Machu Picchu is considered one of the New Seven Wonders of the Modern World. Its architectural beauty, its spectacular natural setting, and the energy contained in its enigmatic structures are truly breathtaking. Here, we will follow in the footsteps of the Incas on a tour of this magical citadel, accompanied by our expert guide.

For those seeking more adventure, there is an optional all-day hike from the train at marker KM 104 to the Machu Picchu Sun Gate on the classic Inca Trail (subject to additional cost).

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch & dinner

 

DAY 8 | SUN 21 JUL | MACHU PICCHU & CUSCO

After breakfast at the hotel, your journey to Machu Picchu begins with a rollicking uphill bus ride. After a two-hour guided tour of the citadel, you will have free time to explore on your own or hike up Huayna Picchu Mountain* for dramatic views that stretch from the Urubamba River Valley to the edge of the Amazon Jungle.

After the visit you will have lunch in Aguas Calientes before the return train ride to Ollantaytambo (approximately 1.5 hours) and a scenic sunset drive back to your hotel in Cusco (approximately 1.5 hours).

As night falls and you arrive amidst the hustle and bustle of the city, you will be touched by a feeling of peace and rejuvenation that will linger long after your journey home.

*Tickets for Huayna Picchu Mt. (8,924’ / 2,720m) are subject to availability and come at an additional cost. If Huayna Picchu permits are not available, you can opt for a hike up Machu Picchu Mt. (10,112 / 3,082m), located next to the Machu Picchu Citadel on the southern side.

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch

 

DAY 9 | MON 22 JUL | CUSCO

After a relaxed breakfast, we will start the day visiting the Sacsayhuamán fortress. This colossal building of enormous carved and precisely joined stones, is an outstanding example of Inca military architecture and is undoubtedly one of the largest constructions in Tahuantinsuyo.

We will continue on to Koricancha, the “enclosure of gold” in Quechua, a temple dedicated to the worship of the Sun god, which, according to the stories, had entire walls covered with gold inside. Finally, we will visit the Cathedral where we will stop to discover the mysteries it keeps on a guided tour and admire its beautiful atriums and priceless paintings from the 17th and 18th century Cusco school.

Today we will enjoy lunch at a local restaurant at the main plaza.

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch

 

DAY 10 | TUE 23 JUL | AMAZON CRUISING | 4 days

This morning we transfer to Cusco’s airport for our flight to Iquitos where our Amazon cruising adventure begins.

Upon our arrival in the city of Iquitos we will be met by personnel from the Delfín III, who will accompany us to Nauta, a small town on the banks of the Marañón River, where we will board the cruise ship. As we leave the port, we will be served an exotic cocktail we can drink while enjoying a fabulous panoramic view from the observation deck. Our naturalist guide will give us a briefing on the itinerary: activities, route, wildlife and flora. Our first excursion by motorboat will take us to the confluence of three rivers, where we will be able to witness the extraordinary sight of three different colored rivers, as they come together and flow into the mighty Amazon River itself. And of course, in the evening we will have our first opportunity to photograph the marvelous sunset over the Amazon Forest.

Meals included: Breakfast & dinner

 

DAY 11 | WED 24 JUL | AMAZON CRUISING

The walk on the Fundo Casual jungle trail will take us deep into the non-flooded “terra firma” forest, as our naturalist guide points out the animals and flora visible in the surrounding jungle. We will have the opportunity to buy handcrafts made by local people, before exploring one of the best conserved and most well-protected areas of the Pacaya Samiria National Reserve, as our guide tells us more about the region’s extraordinary biodiversity. We will even have the chance to swim in a jungle river with the Amazon’s famous pink dolphins!

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch & dinner

 

DAY 12 | THU 25 JUL | AMAZON CRUISING

We will explore the Samiria River and its tributaries by motorboat, experiencing abundant wildlife that includes blue-and-yellow macaws, scarlet macaws, toucans, umbrella birds, monkeys, capybaras, and many other fascinating species. Our guide will tell us more about the complex biodiversity found in this part of the Amazon basin. After a delicious lunch, we will visit Nauta Caño Creek, where we will be invited to fish for piranha. At nightfall, our guide will take us on a nighttime safari in search of caimans and nocturnal bird species.

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch & dinner

 

DAY 13 | FRI 26 JUL | AMAZON CRUISE & FLIGHT TO LIMA

Today we will return to the port at Nauta, from where we will be transferred to the airport in Iquitos. Along the way, we will visit ACOBIA, the River Mammal Rescue and Recovery Centre, where we will have the opportunity to see baby manatees and learn more about these docile creatures and the reasons behind their status as an endangered species. The centre also cares for other species of Amazon fauna that have been rescued. Following this visit, we will continue to the airport and board our return flight to Lima.

Meals included: Breakfast & Farewell Dinner

 

DAY 14 | SAT 27 JUL | LIMA

This morning we´ll enjoy a walk around Barranco neighborhood, which is an area called home by countless artists, photographers, and authors. We will walk along interesting streets lined with Republican houses, admire the splendid views, and visit the Puente de los Suspiros (Bridge of Sighs). We will then explore local art galleries and concept stores, tucked away on a typically unassuming Barranco Street, to learn more about Peru’s most recognized women in plastic arts and design.

Our final lunch will be at local restaurant before we transfer to Lima´s international airport for our flight home or onward adventure!

Meals included: Breakfast & lunch

 

NEED TO KNOW

From USD$12,970 per person, twin share

From USD$12,970 per person, twin share

START: Lima, Peru     |     Finish: Lima, Peru

Inclusions

  • Escorted by Sarah Hoyland, Director of The Classic Safari Company & Founder of Journeys for Women
  • 14 nights in stunning hotels & lodges as specified (or similar)
  • Three nights sailing on Delfin III – a 22-bedroom luxury Amazon cruising boat
  • Breakfast daily + 11 lunches + 11 dinners
  • Bottled water whilst touring
  • Airport arrival and departure transfers
  • Land transportation in an air-conditioned deluxe vehicle throughout the itinerary
  • Professional local English-speaking guide
  • Entrance fees to Machu Picchu & bus tickets (round trip)
  • Exceptional retail therapy opportunities
  • All gratuities for group restaurant meals whilst on tour
  • Once in a lifetime, experiences throughout the journey
  • Small group of like-minded ladies
  • Domestic airfares Lima/Cusco/Lima/Iquitos/Lima**

**Domestic airfares have been calculated based on prices quoted by local airlines as at December 2023. Prices are subject to change and therefore might change the quoted itinerary price. Final price can only be determined at time of booking.

 

Exclusions

  • International air arrangements plus all applicable pre-paid departure taxes
  • Travel Insurance and individual health requirements
  • Additional meals & snacks + all drinks
  • Room or flight upgrades
  • Transfers to any flight other than specified airports in the itinerary
  • Laundry, camera fees (minimal) and personal purchases
  • Peru Tourist Visa
  • Tip for local guides (budget $250 to add to kitty)
  • Items of a personal nature & any item not specified
  • Optional all-day hike on classic Inca Trail* (US$295)
  • Optional hike up Huayna Picchu Mountain or Machu Picchu Mountain hike** (subject to availability) (US$295)

* Inca Trail hike departs from train at marker KM 104 to the Machu Picchu Sun Gate
**Restrictions for entry to Huayna Picchu may result in limited availability. Please indicate on booking if you would like to do the all-day Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu hike.

Minimum – 8 travellers

Maximum – 16 (plus host)


Flights & Insurance – please call to discuss your individual requirements

Recommended Routings to Lima | Latam (codeshare Qantas) via Auckland NZ & Santiago Chile

Terms and conditions apply – please click here for full details.
This tour departs with a minimum of 10 people and a maximum of 17 people (plus host).
A single-room supplement of A$5,125 applies if you wish to secure your own room.  If you are ‘willing to share’ we will do all possible to pair you with another participant. If unsuccessful the single supplement will apply. Call us to discuss.
The price is subject to change due to currency fluctuation and unforeseen changes beyond our control.
We reserve the right, due to situations beyond our control, to substitute any hotel or boat with another of comparable quality – this would be advised as soon as possible.
All quoted airfares & taxes are subject to change at any time prior to, or at the time of, ticketing.
Australian & New Zealand passport holders DO NOT require a visa to enter Peru for a stay of up to 3 months.  Other passport holders requiring a visa must obtain one prior to arrival.  If you do not travel on an Australian or New Zealand passport please be sure to let us know.
By making any payment for this tour, and/or joining this tour, you acknowledge the potential health risks & you accept full responsibility for all potential quarantine and/or health requirements.

YOUR HOST

SARAH HOYLAND

Sarah is the Founder of our Journeys for Women collection and co-Director of The Classic Safari Company. Over the years she's travelled to all seven continents, visited over 63 countries, forged global lifelong friendships and honed her haggling skills to perfection! In her own words 'I am happiest when I am lost in a souk, on safari in Africa, travelling with my daughters or when I have the privilege of viewing wild and wonderful places afresh through the eyes of the ladies I host on our womens-only soirees!'.

Exellent and wonderful, reaching way above expectations.

Elizabeth Mackintosh

Julia you did a fantastic job - everything was first class. Well organised, efficient and stress free. We all agreed it was the best holiday we've ever had. Cant wait to travel with CSC again.

Milford family

We are so happy we put our trust in CSC, we had an amazing adventure and would recommend them to anyone.

Kim & Brad Balance

The trip exceeded my expectations and was the best family holiday I have ever had. Our children simply loved it and now I know more about African wildlife than they do about our own farm animals.

Rowntree family

Classic Safari are the people who genuinely know other culture and offer incredible insight to perfectly meet your expectations.

Melanie McMillan & Iain Jones

We loved it all. Our son wants to go back tomorrow. We would ALL go back again!

Laurence & Remi Cunningham

An amazing experience - the best family holiday we have ever had. We were extremely impressed by the meticulous attention to our itinerary. I can't speak highly enough of all the elements of this exciting journey!

Sheryl & Robert Taylor

Thank you for making our trip to Africa so spectacular. The attention to detail really made it special. It really was the trip of a lifetime.

Paul Cozzi

Very knowledgeable and patient. Our trip was all that we hoped for. Wonderful!

Jane & Robert Happell

Everything was perfect! Advice and information on destinations and activities hit everything I had hoped to experience. I contacted the Classic Safari Company upon recommendation and have now, in turn, recommended to others.

Tim Bradley

You can't improve on perfection. I had my best birthday and holiday with my family celebrating my 80th birthday in Africa. Everything that Julia organised was perfect and the whole trip was a highlight!

Buckingham Family

The trip of a lifetime, couldn't have dreamt of a better adventure if I tried.

Emma Jeffcoat

Absolutely everything was first class & so well organised.

Simon & Jackie Adams

Classic Safari Company has done it again! A unique experience that ticked all the boxes - wildlife, culture and dining experience. A dream come true!

Ros Wheeler

Their experience and knowledge of Africa is evident and we couldn't have been happier with the total package. This has given us a taste for Africa - now we are ready for more.

Andrew & Pip Stevens

If you want the most sensational experience in Africa let Julia and the staff at Classic Safari Co plan it for you! Their knowledge, expertise and enthusiasm for their job means your every wish will be fulfilled.

Miriam & Joseph Harrison

Classic Safari is the place to go to for "top end" adventure travel.

Ron & Alison Guthrie

Classic Safari Company were brilliant - 10/10

Di & Kingsley Yates

The Classic Safari Company is the best I have dealt with. Extremely knowledgeable & professional, friendly, patient & understanding of first timers to Africa.

Annette Whiley

It certainly was the best trip we have EVER had. The experiences were mind blowing.  We want everyone we know to experience Africa - the animals, the people - magical.

Jo-anne & Dean Mifsud

Would do it all again and not change a moment. Best holiday ever!

The McGowan Tribe

An absolutely fantastic travel company - every one of the many trips they have organised for us over 22 years have been faultless and fabulous.

Judith & Roger Williams

The most delicious meal I had in Peru was on the Lares trek - a traditional Andean feast called a ‘Pachamanca’. Using locally sourced produce, the meal is cooked over the course of several hours in the ground, covered with hot stones and soil. The end product delicious and earthy in every way. A treat when wandering high up in the mountains on the trek, meeting and learning how the locals have survived here for centuries.

Julie McIntosh, Founder of The Classic Safari Company

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