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fun4all4 Sep 17th, 2010 09:17 AM

Seeking itinerary input for Peru trip
Our family of 4, 2 adults with 2 sons (ages 17 and 20 at time of travel) are in the early stages of planning a trip to Peru for 12 nights in August 2011.
We have done lots of active traveling together, but South America will be totally new to us. We want to include both hiking the Inca Trail and experiencing an area outside of Cusco/SV/MP (also considered Arequipa but think leaning towards rainforest). As I have started planning the logistics, it seems that we will have more 1 and 2-night stays than we generally do - it may be the nature of a trip like this?

This is what we are thinking. I would appreciate any thoughts you all may have. :-)

1 - Arrive Lima and overnight at airport hotel (Ramada)
2,3 - Fly to Cusco and 2 overnights in Ollantaytambo to acclimate and sightsee.
4,5,6 - Inca Trail
7- After arriving early morning at MP and touring, spend night at Inkaterra MP to relax and luxuriate after hike.
8- Back to Cusco in morning. Spend afternoon and evening enjoying Cusco. Sleep Cusco. Morning in Cusco then to PM.
9,10,11 - Fly to Puerto Maldonado for 3 nights at Inkaterra Reserva Amazonica
12- Return to Lima. Overnight Miraflores. Fly home from Lima the next morning.

Thanks!! :-)

mlgb Sep 17th, 2010 09:59 AM

Your acclimitazation schedule may not be enough. You may want to spend nights 4 and 5 in Cusco following Ollantaytambo. Then do the Trial on 6 7 8. This means skipping the Amazon. There is plenty to see around Cusco and the Sacred Valley. You could add another day to Lima.

Diane60030 Sep 17th, 2010 10:23 AM

You might want to check the train schedule. I'm not sure why you would want to stay Agua Callientes and then go to Cusco in the morning. Usually you only stay over night if you want to go back up to Machu Pichu again.

fun4all4 Sep 17th, 2010 01:48 PM

Hmmm, others have said 2 nights should be enough. What about with Diamox? We'll have to think about that.

Should we go back to Cusco the same day we finish the trek and visit MP and spend 2 nights there?


Jackie34399 Sep 17th, 2010 02:15 PM

Hello! Since you are planning your tour in advance I am sure you are going to have an unforgettable time in Peru. I tell you this because when I went to Peru I didn´t planify with too much time in advance and I can say it was the best holiday of my life! Peru is one of the best destinations in South America. As previous fodorites have said, the time to acclimate might not be enough so you'd better stay one more day sightseeing there in Cusco; but not only in Ollantaytambo. There are lots of great places to vist and many things to learn there about the Inca culture. So good luck in the process and have a great time!

fun4all4 Sep 17th, 2010 02:36 PM

If we stayed 2n Olly and 2n Cusco on the front end, then 3n on trail, and 1n Inkaterra MP in AC...could we transfer that morning from AC and get to airport to fly out to PM that day? In other words, how long does it take to get from AC to the Cusco airport? Just trying to think it out. :-)

xyz99 Sep 17th, 2010 03:45 PM


I think our posts met a few years ago, when we were both planning a trip at the same destination…we are also planning now Peru for early Aug 2011, and our itinerary looks very similar to yours, except we will have more time in the Sacred Valley, an extra day in Lima (I think) at the end, and will not hike Inca Trail.

So based on what I read only, and because your plans are so much like ours, I think they are great. I will follow your posts – I’m sure there will be lots of info to help me, too. Good luck planning.

ncounty Sep 19th, 2010 09:11 AM

I am also following along: I am planning a solo trip in april 2011 for 11 days.

fun4all4 Sep 19th, 2010 10:34 AM

Yes, xyz99...I definitely "recognize" you! Great that you are planning Peru,too. Why Manu over Puerto Maldonado - just curious and making sure I'm not missing something that might work better for us. Would love to hear your thoughts. Life and work are so busy, I don't have as much time to put into research/planning as I used to.

@ncounty and xyz: I'd love to see your itineraries so far, if you'd care to share.

I think we are going to have a hard time deciding among all the amazing choices in Peru. I hate the thought of missing an area outside of SV/Cus/MP, but I wonder if we may need to limit due to tighter time restrictions. We just can't take 14 or 15 nights; 12 is pushing it. But ,I love the idea of relaxing and exploring at a jungle lodge.

Thanks for all the help and sharing so far.

mlgb Sep 19th, 2010 01:05 PM

"Could we transfer that morning from AC and get to airport to fly out to PM that day? In other words, how long does it take to get from AC to the Cusco airport?"

The train from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo takes about 2 hours. Transfer time by taxi to the airport, another 2 hours.

Add an hour at the airport for checkin time.

Most flights from Cusco are in the morning due to unfavorable wind and weather in the afternoon. You can get a late train from Aguas Calientes the night before your flight. If you are nervous about traveling by taxi after dark (but the cars do have headlights) even staying in Ollantaytambo will put you two hours closer to Cusco for a morning flight.

xyz99 Sep 19th, 2010 06:19 PM

A few posters (qwovadis especially) seem to think that Manu is better for wildlife, and that is my interest (mostly for photography). I loved, LOVED Bosque del Cabo in Costa Rica, and somehow I imagine I can get a similar feel in Manu. Maybe that is not true, but I hope I will not be disappointed. That is the main reason…although I am ready to listen for other suggestions.

We are going for 14 days, as all our vacations, from Sat to Sat. I posted an itinerary on a different thread . Let me know if you want more details about our plans, which are still very fluid.

One thing we are sure about: none of us speaks any Spanish, and even we might learn a few words between now and then, we will definitely get (in advance) some local guides that speak English. Haven’t contacted any yet.

I will follow your and ncounty’s plans. Happy planning, I am having a lot of fun

ncounty Sep 19th, 2010 09:39 PM

Hi fun and xyz,

here is my thread with my itinerary:

so far, it is 11 days..... flight from Lima to cuzco, leave right away for OLY. stay 2 days in OLY, do MP. then back to cuzco. So far, only about 7 days booked up so I am learning and researching what I want to fill the rest of the time with. It's fun to compare. :)

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