Peru small group vacation, Inca Trail & Amazon
Description of Peru small group vacation, Inca Trail & Amazon
Visit Peru and discover its highlights from Lima to Cuzco on this exciting 21-day journey, taking in modern cities and ancient worlds. Explore Peruís lush Amazon jungle, the epic Lake Titicaca and the vast Colca Canyon. Enjoy local homestays, hike the famed Inca Trail to unforgettable Machu Picchu and immerse yourself in fascinating Peruvian culture while discovering the countryís history, buried deep within the walls of lost cities.
The highlights come thick and fast on this trip. Youíll explore Lima, one of the prettiest cities in Latin America, with grand colonial facades, Spanish houses and rich culture. Adjust to the altitude with a pisco sour and some ceviche here. See the mysterious, enigmatic Nazca Lines and take a boat tour on Lake Titicaca, visiting the floating islands of Uros and spending the night with a local family in a traditional island community. Natural wonders include the Colca Canyon, which is twice as deep as the Grand Canyon, and the wild, biodiverse Amazon Jungle. Cuzco is South Americaís oldest continuously inhabited city, with an interesting blend of Inca and colonial influences and then, of course, thereís majestic Machu Picchu. Whether you trek the classic Inca Trail, the Inca Quarry Trail or take the scenic train route, the ancient ruins here are a beautiful, awe-inspiring destination.
Accommodation is sometimes basic, but includes an exciting mix of camping for three nights, two homestays, 11 nights in hotels and two nights in a jungle lodge. This trip involves a lot of walking to see the sights, and if you do the Inca trail, there will be strenuous hiking, too, so youíll need a moderate level of fitness to enjoy it. Getting around this fascinating country involves a mix of planes, public buses and trains, with the odd taxi and private vehicle, too.
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PlanetAs a global operator, we take our role in the tourism industry very seriously. We recognise the impact that tourism has on local communities and the environment, and we plan and operate all our tours with this front of our minds. We believe that every tour operator must be responsible in the way they conduct their business, to ensure the welfare of all people and the conservation of the environment.
We are committed to operating in a responsible manner, incorporating the principles of sustainable development in the way we provide our travelers with real life experiences. These values are more than just words on a page; they are ingrained in our culture and the daily operations of every office and every trip. In addition, we expect our staff and travelers to demonstrate the principles of responsible travel - respecting people, cultures and local environments; in the distribution of wealth; in good will and cross-cultural sharing; and in contributing to sustainable development.
As company our responsibilities donít stop when our tours end. Our own in house foundation has been in operation for over 10 years; a not-for-profit fund that has distributed over AU$3 million to more than 70 non-government organisations since 2002, from health care, education, human rights, child welfare, sustainable development and in environmental and wildlife protection. Donations come from our travelers and are then matched by us dollar for dollar.
We have two projects within Peru that we support. Firstly Living Heart, which is an organisation that aims to improve the lives of Andean women and children in the Sacred Valley area, near Cusco. This programme combines educational strategies, nutritional and health advice, including family planning support, and conservation education, with the purpose of promoting sustainable development and improving the quality of life for the Andean people. This work is particularly aimed at benefiting the lives of disadvantaged children. Secondly Escuela WiŮaypaq which offers free primary education in Quechua and Spanish to needy local children. Its aims are to improve the childrenís education in disadvantaged rural areas and to strengthen the Andean culture and traditional values such as respect and harmony, to raise the children's self-confidence and to make them feel proud of their cultural heritage.
PeopleWe believe that responsible travel is about the attitude you take with you and the choices you make when traveling - to respect and benefit local people, their cultures, economy and the environment. This tour will take you on a journey through modern cities and ancient worlds where you will be immersed in Peruvian culture.
We take care to use local transport throughout, including buses, boats and canoes. We also stay in small, locally owned hotels and guesthouses which is a great way to put money back into the local economy. This trip includes a variety of unique and responsible accommodation including a homestay within the Colca community and a community island on Lake Titicaca and eco-friendly lodges which combines low-impact architecture with traditional native style in the Amazon Jungle. The homestays provide you with a great opportunity to interact with the locals by assisting your host with their daily activities such as planting, collecting water, peeling potatoes or preparing the family meal. A game of soccer is also a great way to make local friends. We source produce locally throughout the trip, eat at local restaurants and encourage our travelers to purchase souvenirs from local artisans and villages as we pass through.
Recruitment of our ground team comes from the local community. This not only gives a fantastic insight into the country and a snap shot of day to day life, but it also puts valuable financial resources back into the local economy, creating jobs and supporting local businesses.