Cusco City Tour, Sacred Valley & Machu Picchu 4D/3n
This fabulous tour combines the hightlights of Cusco, with the key archeological sites in the Sacred Valley and a night in Aguas Calientes and the tour of the Lost City if the Ink . Machu Picchu! Visit all the highlights of the Andes at Cusco region with this 4 day tour.
- Visits in Cusco ( two sites ):
- The Cathedral (the main church of Cusco)
- Q’oricancha (Known as the Temple of the Sun, the Sun Temple of the Inkas)
- Visits outside of Cusco ( four main inka sites located on the city limits):
- Puca Pucara
- HOTEL: (***)
- Pisaq Ruins
- Pisaq Market
- Ollantaytambo Fortress
- HOTEL: (**)
- Maras Salt Mines
- Moray Agricultural ruin
- Chincheros Market
- HOTEL: (***)
- MACHU PICCHU
Day 1: CUSCO CITY – INCA RUINS
We will meet you at your hotel lobby at 1PM to begin this tour. From here you will head to Cusco’s Plaza de Armas where you will visit the famous cathedral. After touring this sacred church you will continue on foot with your group through an ancient Inca-built street from the Plaza de Armas to Qoricancha, the Temple of the Sun. In Qoricancha you will observe the clash between Inca culture and Catholicism, and you will have the opportunity to see firsthand the difference in building methods, The inka constructions here are amazing as this was the main temple of the inkas where all their highways used to depart from, there high altar made in bronze is the high light.
From Qoricancha your group will walk down Avenida El Sol, where you will take your bus to drive up and outside of the city, the drive last 25 minutes until you arrive to the majestic inka site sacsayhuaman where your guide will guide you around and you will have extra time to explore on your own.
From Sacsayhuaman you will take a bus for very short time to Quenqo inka site where you will observe some altars from inka times, then drive to Puca Pucara a small circular inka site and finally you will visit Tambomachay the temple of water with its impressive water fountains. Then drive back to Cusco where the tour ends at your hotel.
- ACCOMMODATIONS: (***)
- MEALS INCLUDED: None
- ENTRANCE TICKETS: Included
Day 2: PISAQ – OLLANTAYTAMBO
At 8:00AM be ready at your hotel lobby, because your Nig Adventures driver and your guide will come and pick you up and bring you to your first destination, Sacsayhuaman. Sacsayhuaman is the most beautiful ruin created by the Incas above the Inka city of Cusco. Here you will see a great representation of why Inka architecture remains so well intact today. The way the Inka used tremendous stone blocks and intricately laid them out allowed the buildings to absorb all of nature’s elements including seismic activity. At Sacsayhuaman you will see the largest stone that survives in any Inca ruin.
From Sacsayhuaman we will head towards the Sacred Valley. Along the way we will visit Awanacancha, a weaving center and alpaca farm where you will observe the difference between llamas, alpacas, vicuñas and guanacos, as well as the different varieties of potatoes and corn that are special to the Sacred Valley. If you would like, this is a great place to purchase high-quality alpaca clothing, textiles and gifts.
We will drive from here to Pisaq Inca Ruins. These are another amazing ruin that is located on top of one of the mountains in the Sacred Valley. We will see hundreds of terraces for agriculture, where the Inkas farmed corn, potatoes, and quinoa. We will also see the religious and astronomical side of the Inka at these ruins. This will be an amazing place to take photos as you will be ath the top of the Sacred Valley with endless views.
Afterwards, we wil descend into Pisaq market and town. This is the most traditional handicraft market and another great place to purchase inexpensive gifts, if you choose. You can also try some of the local delicacies – many of the local farmers bring their vegetables here to sell. This is where we will stop for our lunch break.
We will drive through the Sacred Valley after lunch to Ollantaytambo. Ollantaytambo was an Inka checkpoint where they protected Machu Picchu and the valley against any enemies (Ollantay is the name of the leader, tambo is a lodging place) and is the best example of an intact Inka village, charming with its waterways running right through the quaint streets of the town. You will explore the ruins here, have some free time to take photos and explore the town. You will be spending the night in Ollantaytambo so your guide will set you up in your hotel where you can relax a little bit before dinner.
- Meals: Not Included
- Entrance Tickets: Included
Day 3: MARAS – MORAY – CHINCHEROS
Breakfast will be at 6:30AM on Day 2. After breakfast, we will drive to Salineras/Maras Salt Mines. This mine was extremely important to the Incas and was their supply for salt and still provides salt today. There are 3000 salt pools which act as evaporation chambers for this salt water spring which spills out of the mountain and down the mountainside at 12,000 feet above sea leve. These are owned by local farmers and have become the main economic activity for all locals that live nearby. On top of being historical and useful, the Maras salt mines are quite a sight to see and just plain beautiful.
After the mines, we will drive to Moray Inca Archeological Center. The Inka used Moray as a way to study farming. They built terraces and experimented with different vegetables to see what grew best and at which temperature. You will see the terraces of Moray – each terrace was best for certain types of growth and the Inkas studied and practiced to see which worked best.
We will then drive to Chincheros after Moray. In Chincheros we will see some Inka terracing that was used to farm potatoes. The Inkas discovered that at this elevation of 3700 meter/11,500 feet, it was the perfect location to farm potatoes. They grew so many potatoes that they were able to supply the entire Inka civilization which this amazing vegetable. We will also see one unique colonial church that was built on the top of the Inka palace by the Spaniards. We will then visit your final textile center and you will have your last opportunity for purchasing gifts here.
We will head back to Ollantaytambo where you can enjoy dinner at one of the restaurants in town and get ready for your train to Aguas Calientes. We will bring you to your hotel where you should try to get to sleep early and prepare for your most important day, visiting Machu Picchu.
- Accommodations: (***)
- Meals: Breakfast Only
- Entrance Tickets: Included
Day 4: MACHU PICCHU
Today is the most important day since we will be visiting Machu Picchu. Because it’s so special, we encourage you to wake up early in the morning to enjoy breakfast at the hotel and then get to the bus station to try to catch one of the first buses, which start at 5.30 am (they are more like shuttles, all first come, first serve – and leave as soon as they fill up). This bus will take about 25 minutes up a switchback road to get to Machu Picchu. As soon as you arrive to the complex, it is our job to take you to the best spot to overlook all the ruins and get a panoramic view of the landscape and the sunrise over the mountains. There will be a rendezvous to observe the sunrise (weather permitting) in order to get a spectacular view of the Lost City of the Inkas. You will then have a 2-hour guided tour around Machu Picchu with plenty of free time afterwards to explore on your own. If you have tickets to climb one of the amazing mountains of Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu, your guide will direct you to where to begin this hike after the tour. Please make sure this is arranged at least 2 months in advance of your visit as tickets do sell out in advance, especially for Huayna Picchu. Once you are done with exploring all Machu Picchu has to offer, you will take a bus down to Aguas Calientes for lunch and then take an afternoon train back to Ollantaytambo. For there you will have private transportation to Cusco where we will drop you off at your hotel.
End of tour
WHAT’S INCLUDED IN YOUR TOUR
- All private tours with professional English speaking guides
- Hotels (this tour can be done without hotels as well)
- Entrance fees within Cusco
- Bus transport along the Sacred Valley
- Tour guide for the Sacred Valley of the Incas
- Entrance fees for all sites in the Sacred Valley
- Tourist class Expedition train to and from Aguas Calientes
- Hotel accommodation in Ollantaytambo and Aguas Calientes
- Breakfast at the hotels
- Bus transport to and from Machu Picchu
- Entrance fee to Machu Picchu
- Guided tour for 2 hours in Machu Picchu
- Transportation back to Cusco and to your hotel
- Huaynapicchu ($25 per person)/Machu Picchu Mountain ($15 per person)
- Upgrade train on return to Cusco to Vistadome train ($65 per person)
WHAT YOU NEED TO TAKE
- Small bag for belongings (you can only bring a bag 8 kg or less on the train to and from Aguas Calientes)
- Daypack for things needed during the tour
- Comfortable clothes and appropriate footwear (hiking boots or sneakers are recommended)
- Extra money to purchase souvenirs, such as handcrafts from the local market
- Camera with spare batteries
- Insect repellent
- Water to drink
- Scarf or a hat to protect your head from the strong sun
- A warm jacket for the evening
- Any necessary medication
- ** Please note that you are not allowed large luggage on the train to/from Aguas Calientes. You are limited to a bag no larger than 8k/16lb.
Minimum of 2 people required to do this tour
4D/3N Tour with no Hotels 4D/3N Tour with Hotels (*** star hotels)
$655 per person $815 per person (based on 2 in a room)
Hotels can be upgraded
IN CUSCO: Aranwa Hotel +50 per person (+120 for a single room)
IN OLLANTAYTAMBO: Hotel Pakaritampu +$30 US per person, (+100 for a single room)
IN AGUAS CALIENTES: El Mapi + 40 US per person (+120 for a single room)
- Student discount (with valid ISIC card) – $25
- Under 18 Discount – $25
- Student Discount for permit to climb Huayna Picchu – $10
- Student Discount for permit to climb Machu Picchu Mountain – $5
STUDENTS: If you booked your tour with your International Student Identity Card (ISIC) you must have this card and it must be valid for you to enter Machu Picchu. If you purchased a permit with the student discount and you do not bring your ISIC card or it is not valid at the time of your entrance, they will not allow you in This is National Park rules.
HUAYNA PICCHU: Only 400 people are allowed to climb this mountain per day. It needs to be booked in advanced and the price is $25 per person. It is about a 90 minute round-trip climb. It is recommended that you climb Huayna Picchu in the 10-11am time slot as otherwise you miss your guided tour. We recommend booking about 2 months in advance to secure your permit as it is very popular and they do sell out well in advance. You may also opt to climb Machu Picchu Mountain which is more difficult than Huayna Picchu and is 3-3½ hours round trip. The cost is $15 and also requires a permit in advance. Just let us know if you want to book this option
EXTRA NIGHT: If you want to stay longer at Machu Picchu then you can book an extra night at Aguas Calientes village. Just let us know that you plan to stay an extra night and we will organize your return train for the next day. You can either organize your accommodation by yourself or we can assist with making bookings. If you were thinking of going back to Machu Picchu the next day, then you will need to purchase a new entrance ticket to get into Machu Picchu as well as the round-trip bus tickets to Aguas Calientes for around $75.
RETURN TRAIN TO CUSCO: The return train is the Expedition train which departs either at 2:55, 4:20, 4:42 or 6:40 PM. The train that is booked depends on availability and is confirmed at your briefing. There is an option to upgrade your train to the Vistadome train which is an extra $100 per person round-trip. Please tell us of your preference at the time of booking. None of the trains go straight to Cusco, they only run either to Ollantaytambo or Poroy but in either case we will transfer you back by bus to your hotel (2 hours from Ollantaytambo and 25 minutes from Poroy)