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Machupicchu Peru & Galapagos Ecuador - Inka Trail

Tour details
Tour map
Duration 19 days 18 nights
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Type of tour
Adventure sports ,nature,archaeological& Cultural ,
USD on request
daily departures
Lima,Cusco,sacred Valley Inka trail ,Machupicchu, Quito,Ggalapagos
South American Tours & Destinations
Machupicchu Peru & Galapagos Ecuador - Inka Trail
Tour Description :    

Here's a trip for those with the desire but not the time to experience Machu Picchu and the Galapagos Islands on separate vacations. For you, we've put these two magical destinations into one unforgettable South America adventure tour. This pairing of the Alternative Inca Trail to reach Machu Picchu with our land-based Galapagos MultiSport Adventure is the ultimate for active travelers who want to stay off the beaten path. The tour travels first to the Andes where you'll take the least populated route to the country's most popular destination, tracing the Incas' cultural traditions and engineering feats through the Sacred Valley. Accompanied by our expert local guides, this informative Alternative Inca Trail tour offers the rare opportunity to meet and mingle with the indigenous populations that dwell here. After your unforgettable stay in the Inca heartland, it's off to the Galapagos Islands of Ecuador. During these nine enchanting days, you'll stay on the archipelago's central and southern islands with accommodations in comfortable hotels. By kayaking, snorkeling, mountain biking and trekking, you will observe Galapagos wildlife close up in ways few tourists can. Visiting one of civilization's most stunning achievements and one of the world's last bastions where wildlife is king, all in a single trip, makes this the vacation of a lifetime.

To arrange a private departure for the Galapagos Multi Sport & Alternative Inca Trail Hike, please Contact Us regarding details and private departure costs.

SCUBA Diving is available on this tour; please Contact Us for more information.

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Day 1 (Wed) LIMA
View Lima accommodations picture gallery
Arrive and transfer to your hotel. If you arrive early, city tours, museum visits or sightseeing excursions tailored to your interests may be arranged. Overnight in Lima.

View Optional Pre-Itinerary Tour Extensions

Day 2 (Thu) LIMA - CUSCO
View Cusco accommodations picture gallery
Today we kick off our Peru tour with a morning departure flight to Cusco, colonial jewel and center of the Inca Empire. Southern Explorations' guides pick you up at the airport and take you on a quick tour around the beautiful Plaza de Armas on the way to your hotel, leaving you free for the remainder of the day to relax and get used to the altitude (10,856 ft). Overnight in a charming Cusco hotel. (B)

Day 3 (Fri) CUSCO
View Cusco accommodations picture gallery
The morning begins with a guided walking tour of the local markets of Cusco, the colonial cathedral and the city's major Inca ruins, the Koricancha, the impressive Temple of the Sun. After lunch, you'll tour Cusco's temples and visit several nearby distinctive Inca sights, including the fortress of Sacsayhuaman with its megalithic terraces; Kenko's stone surfaces and subterranean alters, Puka Pukara, the small terrace that protected the royal capital from attacks, and the water temple site, Tambo Machay. An evening briefing session orients you to the upcoming trek. Overnight in a charming hotel in Cusco. (B)

View Sacred Valley accommodations picture gallery
Today's Peru ecotour consists of a day-long excursion through snowcapped mountains to the Incas' legendary Sacred Valley. Along the way, you'll pass Inca agricultural terracing on steep valley walls and the Pisac temple ruins, setting off panoramic views of jagged granite mountains. Pisac is home to one of the most important textile markets in the Andes, offering a pleasant way to get acquainted with the local culture. After lunch, you'll head to Ollantaytambo (9,185 ft), a small town with an imposing Inca fortress. Overnight at a pleasant hotel in Ollantaytambo. (B)

Life on the Alternative Inca Trail gallery
From Ollantaytambo, today's travels begin with a thirty minute drive in a private van to the village of Socma. Before starting the day's trek, you'll stop to visit a small school, meet the children and donate classroom supplies. The trek begins with a gradual climb offering fantastic views of the valley below. After two hours of hiking, you'll arrive at the spectacular Piruchayoc waterfalls (10,745 ft) where you'll stop to gaze at the view. Thirty minutes further along the trail are the Raccaypata ruins. Here you'll have lunch in scenic splendor and explore the ruins before hiking a final two miles to today's campsite, Rayan (11,795 ft). You'll arrive in time to relax and enjoy the sun setting behind the Andes before dinner (B,L,D)
Hiking Details: 5.6 miles | 6 Hours Altitude: Camp elevation: 11,794 ft.

Some will tell you that the Alternative Inca Trail Hike offers even more spectacular surroundings en route to the same amazing Machu Picchu Life on the Alternative Inca Trail gallery
After a hearty breakfast, you'll hike a winding ascending trail to reach Charcahuylla pass at 13,910 feet, surrounded by the Vilanota mountain range with Mt. Veronica rising above the peaks. This segment of the hike is a step back in time as you pass Peruvians working in fields of potatoes and other local crops. After about an hour, you'll come to a small straw house, the setting for lunch. Continuing your Peru travel downhill, you'll pass through a small village before dropping into a beautiful valley to reach the mountain town of Canchacanchayok near tonight's camp. (B,L,D)
Hiking Details: 6.8 miles | 6 Hours Altitude: camp elevation 12,785

Life on the Alternative Inca Trail gallery
Today's route intersects an ancient Inca road that gains altitude and eventually affords views of the stunning Anccascocha alpine lake. After stopping for an energy-boosting snack, you'll continue the ascent to the second and final high alpine pass, 14,875-ft. Huayanay, with views of the mountains and lake. From here, you'll hike into a valley with views of famed Mt. Salkantay, stopping to camp near a small village. You'll be able to visit with the villagers and enjoy some Peru cuisine with a traditional lamb barbecue prepared especially for our guests in the ancient method called Pachamanca. Vegetarian options are available. (B,L,D)
Hiking Details: 9.3 miles | 7 Hours Altitude: camp elevation 12,395

Day 8 (Wed) QHESQA - QUENTE - KM 88
Life on the Alternative Inca Trail gallery
Today, you continue along the Old Inca Trail, stopping to visit the small school of Qhesqa (where gifts for the students are appreciated) before reaching your lunch destination, the Inca ruins of Paucarcancha. The next stop is the town of Huayllabamba where you'll join the stream of visitors on Peru's most popular path, the classic Inca Trail. You'll stop at the Inca ceremonial and work site, Llactapacta that affords great views of elaborate Incan aqueducts. From there you'll walk to the nearby campsite of Machu Quente for a last night of camping under the stars. (B,L,D)
Hiking Details: 6.8 miles | 5 Hours Altitude: camp elevation 8,300 ft

View Machu Picchu accommodations picture gallery
The day begins with a short early morning walk to board the Vista Dome train for your picturesque ride beside the Urubamba River and through a magnificent cloud forest to Aguas Calientes. From here, you'll go by bus to reach the ultimate destination, the awe-inspiring city of Machu Picchu (7,875 ft.). You'll have the whole day to explore the famous ruins before returning to nearby Aguas Calientes for a late afternoon soak in the hot springs and a dinner of Peru cuisine. Overnight at a local hotel. (B)

View Cusco accommodations picture gallery
This second unforgettable day of Machu Picchu history will be spent exploring the site with opportunities to climb to the sacred peak of Huayna Picchu for a perfect view of the entire complex or walk through a lush cloud forest to the Temple of the Moon. Lunch will be enjoyed back in Aguas Calientes before the early afternoon train returns you to Ollantaytambo. Traveling through the Sacred Valley, you'll stop at the Chincheros Market, a cooperative weavers' community that produces some of the best quality textiles in Peru. The local weavers will show you their craft and share its rich history. There will be time for some last-minute shopping before returning to Cusco for the evening. (B)

View Optional Mid-Itinerary Tour Extensions

Day 11 (Sat) CUSCO - LIMA - QUITO
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In the morning you'll be taken to the airport for the return flight to Lima and your connecting international flight to Quito. Arrival and transfer to your Quito hotel. (B)

View Optional Mid-Itinerary Tour Extensions

View San Cristóbal accommodations picture gallery
The morning begins with a transfer to the airport for the flight to San Cristóbal Island. After arrival and check-in at a comfortable hotel, enjoy a welcome lunch and briefing. You'll hike out of town to the San Cristóbal Interpretation Center, for an overview of the island's geology, evolution and natural history. From here take an invigorating hike to nearby Frigate Hill where you witness breathtaking views of the coastline and Puerto Baquerizo Moreno on the other side. This is an excellent bird watching spot where magnificent frigate birds, with wing spans of over six feet, soar above. The great frigates share the hill with blue-footed boobies, swallow-tailed gulls, and Darwin's finches. On the way back, you'll stop for a tropical swim along the white sands of Carola or Mann Beach. Spend the night at a charming San Cristóbal hotel. The remainder of the evening is free to explore this quaint island town. (B,L)

Day 13 (Mon) SAN CRISTÓBAL (Sea Kayaking and Snorkeling)
View San Cristóbal accommodations picture gallery

Experience close encounters with sea lions, marine turtles, blue-footed boobies, frigatebirds and much more every day on this active Galapagos vacation From the sparkling coast, slip into sleek ocean kayaks and spend the day paddling along the turquoise waters to Playa Ochoa, watching sea lions, marine turtles, blue-footed boobies and frigate birds from bays and coves along the way. You will stop in Darwin Bay, the first landing site of the MS Beagle. After reaching Playa Ochoa, you will continue to nearby Isla Lobos looking for marine iguanas and swimming with friendly sea lions. Enjoy a hearty lunch before paddling to Roca Leon Dormido, the jagged remains of an old tuff cone often covered with seabirds. The jutting rocks offer excellent snorkeling in the Galapagos. Here, marine life is abundant, with hammerheads, white-tipped sharks, eagle rays, golden rays, clams, starfish, marine invertebrates and dozens of tropical fish species swimming in and out of the rocky channels. Return to the hotel to relax for the evening. (B, L)

Day 14 (Tue) SAN CRISTÓBAL - SANTA CRUZ (Hiking)
View Santa Cruz accommodations picture gallery
After breakfast, you'll take a fast boat from San Cristóbal to the island of Santa Cruz, where you'll be transferred to El Chato Reserve, a natural habitat of the Galapagos tortoise. Here you hike to learn about these giant and search for pintail ducks, egrets, flycatchers, finches and frigate birds may be seen bathing in freshwater lakes. You'll explore unique volcanic tunnel formations in lava caves, and if the weather is clear, be able to see Media Luna, an ancient collapsed crater at the top of the island. You'll continue to Los Gemelos, two volcanic craters near the top of the island and hike around through a beautiful Scalesia forest. This is the habitat for the short eared owl, one of two owl species on Santa Cruz. In the afternoon you return to Puerto Ayora and your hotel. (B, L)

Day 15 (Wed) SANTA CRUZ (Charles Darwin Center, Sea Kayaking and Hiking)
View Santa Cruz accommodations picture gallery
After breakfast, you'll visit famed Charles Darwin Research Station to learn about Galapagos conservation and wildlife management efforts. Here you meet Lonesome George, the last giant tortoise of his species. After exploring the Research Station, we will slip into kayaks and paddle through the calm turquoise waters of Divine Bay and Punta Estrada, winding through high-walled lava channels home to white-tipped sharks and rays. Above, colonies of blue-footed boobies, tropic birds, herons, crabs and marine iguanas perch along the cliffs. Making the relaxing paddle back to Puerto Ayora, you hike to Tortuga Bay, one of the most beautiful white sand beaches in the archipelago and nesting site of thousands of marine turtles. This four mile loop is on trails through dry forest habitat home to hundreds of iguanas. You'll return to your hotel in the afternoon and have the evening free to sample the cuisine and nightlife. (B, L)

Day 16 (Thu) ISABELA ISLAND (Biking, Hiking and Snorkeling)
View Isabela Island accommodations picture gallery
In the morning, travel by boat to Puerto Villamil, capital of Isabela Island, the largest island in the Galapagos. During the crossing you will be on the lookout for migrating dolphins and whales (July to October). Isabela was formed by the merging of six shield volcanoes - Alcedo, Cerro Azul, Darwin, Ecuador, Sierra Negra, and Wolf. All but one of these volcanoes is still active, making this island one of the Earth's most volcanically active places. Despite the island's potential for destruction, Isabela's wildlife is rich beyond comparison. You arrive and prepare to mountain bike the beautiful coastline, enjoying its scenery and ample wildlife. You first visit the Wall of Tears, a wall built from lava blocks by prisoners between 1946 and 1959 when Isabela was used as a penal colony. The wall was intended to keep prisoners busy and represents an interesting history of the island. You continue mountain biking along the coast exploring the white sand beaches, mangroves, and brackish lagoons. The area is filled with impressive birdlife, including herons, flamingos, finches, American oyster catchers, and many shore birds. Sea lions and marine iguanas can also be found. After returning for lunch, we set out to hike and snorkel Tintoreras, a small set of wildlife-filled islets within the bay. Here you may encounter the Galapagos Penguin, the only penguin that lives near the equator. Sharks, sea lions, illusive marine turtles and other wildlife abounds. Return to the hotel in the afternoon for a relaxing evening and dinner. (B,L,D)

Day 17 (Fri) ISABELA ISLAND (Hiking)
View Isabela Island accommodations picture gallery
After breakfast, you'll travel to Santo Tomas for the start of today's excursion, a two-three hour hike over six miles of steep terrain. The destination is the rim of volcano Sierra Negra which possesses the second largest caldera in the world. From this vantage point, the views of the five by six mile-wide caldera and Perry Isthmus are astonishing. Following a tasty lunch, you'll hike to Volcano Chico to see if there is any evidence of volcanic activity. This site is a natural museum containing examples of the geologic events that have formed the Galapagos Islands. In the late afternoon, you'll return to your hotel for the night. (B,L,D)

View Quito accommodations picture gallery
The morning begins with a peaceful boat ride back to Santa Cruz Island where you transfer by bus to Baltra Island for the return flight to Quito. Depending upon weather conditions and schedules, you may alternatively take a flight back to Baltra Island to connect with our return flight to Quito. Arrive in the late afternoon and transfer to your comfortable Quito hotel. (B)

Transfer to the airport for the international departure home, the end of Southern Explorations services. If you are interested in more Galapagos tours, trip extensions to other regions or extra days in Quito, we would be happy to arrange them. (B)
(B)reakfast (L)unch (D)inner

Tour Rates :    
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Inclusions :    

In Ecuador

  • 02 lodging nights in Quito or Guayaquil at chosen hotel
  • 06 lodging nights with all meals on board ( Multi Sport )
  • All entrances mentioned in the tour. Except the entrance to the Galapagos
  • All land transportation and transfers
  • Services on regular tours with bilingual guide, English and/or Spanish

In Peru:
In Lima
: Tour around the city + 01 night of hotel
In Cusco: Tour around the city and folkloric diner show + 03 nights of hotel
In Sacred Valley of the Incas: Full day excursion to the Indian Market of Pisac (which takes place only on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays) and the Inca Fortress of Ollantaytambo. The visit the Town of Chincheros is subject to time availability+01 night
Inca Trail to Machu picchu 4 days 3 nights camping site
In Machu Picchu: Guided visit to the citadel and lunch.+ 01 night

  • 6 lodging nights in Peru
  • All breakfasts and meals as specified in the program
  • All entrance tickets for the excursions mentioned before
  • All transfers indicated in the itinerary
  • Inca trail 4 days 3 nights ( campsite)
  • Bus ticket Aguas Calientes - Machu Picchu - Aguas Calientes
  • Train ticket Aguas Calientes - Cusco
  • All applicable taxes
  • All guided tours with bilingual guides (Spanish / English) as mentioned in the itinerary


  • Domestic and/or international flights: Quito - Lima (from US$ 509.25) Quito-Baltra (Galapagos) - Quito = from US$ 428.00 approx. per person subject to variation
  • Airport taxes (international flights: Quito: US$ 44.30 and Guayaquil: US$ 26.00 - Lima: US$ 30.25 for international flights and US$ 6.05 for domestic flights)
  • Domestic Flights Lima - Cusco Lima.
  • Entrance to the Galapagos: US$ 110.00 per person. Except for citizens from the Mercosur and the Andean Community: US$ 60.00 per person
  • Transit Control Card $10.00 per person.
  • Overweight luggage (flights and buses on regular service)
  • Alcoholic beverages, sodas or mineral water
  • Personal expenses
  • Tips
  • National or international phone calls
  • Others not mentioned
  • Second choice tour (rates settled apart)
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