ECOAMERICAPERU

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Photography Best of Peru (EA 115)

As it name says this photography tour takes us to the best destinations of Peru like: Lima, Ballestas Island Excursion, Nazca Lines, Peruvian Amazon at Tambopata Reserve. Sacred Valley of the Incas, Machu Picchu and Lake Titicaca. Ending in Lima or with a transfer to Bolivia. The opportunities to photograph living cultures, wildlife, nature and landscape are many.

Available throughout the year

Itinerary

DAY 1: LIMA
The best of Peru photography tour, starts once we arrive to the capital of Peru, Lima a car will wait to transfer us to the hotel. This is a perfect time to sample Lima’s famous foods, so we will go for dinner to one of the best restaurants in Lima. (D)
DAY 2: LIMA – PARACAS
After breakfast the tour will unravel fascinating history around the city's major sights, the ancient and the now modern Lima. First we will be heading to the ancient colonial area designated by UNESCO as Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 1991; then we continue to the Plaza Mayor, the Presidential Palace, the Cathedral, the Archbishop`s Palace, the City Hall and the Desamparados Train Station; and also we go by Plaza San Martin, a central park surrounded by old colonial buildings with beautiful balconies, then visit the San Francisco Monastery and its famous catacombs. In the afternoon a touristic bus will travel south through the coastal Peruvian desert for 3.5 hrs until the beautiful Paracas Peninsula. We will spend the night in Paracas. (B, L)
DAY 3: BALLESTAS ISLAND EXCURSION – NAZCA LINES- LIMA
After breakfast the early morning transfer goes to the port to take a boat to the Paracas National Reserve passing close to the Ballestas Island and El Candelabro. These locations are also known as guano islands, that is a refugia for large concentrations of sea birds and sea lions in their natural environment. There is lots of visible marine wildlife easy to photograph protected in this national reserve including birds, whales, dolphins, and many types of fish. In the afternoon a private transport takes us to Nazca to flight over the enigmatic Nazca lines; this flight takes 30-minutes over mysterious drawings created by ancient pre-Incas. Great opportunity to take pictures! From the air we will observe shapes of birds, spider, fishes, mammals, and other unidentifiable creatures and drawings. Night trip back to Lima. (B)
DAY 4: LIMA-PUERTO MALDONADO- TAMBOPATA NATIONAL RESERVE.
Flight to Puerto Maldonado. Immediate to arrival there will be a transfer to the small port at the Tambopata River to travel up the Tambopata River until the Sachavacayoc Lodge. As we travel this rainforest river, we will pass large tracks of successional forests, beaches and terra firme cliffs. Great opportunity to see spectacular species of the Amazon such as the White-throated Toucan, Chestnut-eared Aracari, several species of parakeets, parrots and large macaws including the Mealy Parrot, Yellow-headed Macaw, Blue-headed Parrot, Chestnut-fronted Macaw, Red-bellied Macaw, Capped Heron, Sand-colored Nightjar, Black Caracara, flycatcher, Orinoco Goose, Pied Lapwing, Road-side Hawk, Black and Yellow-headed vultures, Black Skimmer, and other species along river beaches, banks and forests. At Sachavacayoc Lodge, the forest is pristine and high canopies show Piping y Spix´s Guans, several colorful frugivores like Paradise Tanager, Sayaca Tanager, Green-and-Gold Tanager, Black-faced Dacnis, and other canopy specialists. The towering rainforest also show many species of wood creepers, woodpeckers and antbirds very active in the lower forest levels. Besides birds, we will see some monkey species as well and there is always a chance to spot some rainforest mammals along beaches and riverbanks. We will be birding until sunset and after our dinner, we will visit some trails to see and hear nocturnal birds such as Great and Common Potoo, Tawny Screech Owl, Horned Owl, Spectacled Owl, and many other. Night at Sachavacayoc Lodge. (B, L, D)
DAY 5: TAMBOPATA NATIONAL RESERVE – MACAW CLAY LICK –CONDENADO OXBOW LAKE
Early departure to the Chuncho Macaw Claylick inside the Tambopata National Reserve. This clay lick in the Chuncho River allows views of several species of small and medium parrots and large macaws. Large numbers of Mealy and Yellow Parrots, Red-bellied Macaw, Chestnut-fronted Macaw, Red-and-Green Macaw, Blue-and-Yellow Macaw and Scarlet Macaw could be observed and photographed. Breakfast will be served while you observe this active clay lick that offers a unique and unforgettable nature spectacle. Later river trip down the Tambopata River and hike to Condenado Oxbow Lake to see more riverside species and more birds from primary rainforest and an oxbow lake. Among the species to be found are the White-necked Heron, Jabiru Stork, Roseate Spatula, Horned Screamer, Muscovy Duck, Amazon Kingfisher, Ringed Kingfisher, Grey-necked Wood-Rail, Yellow-rumped Oriole, Purus Jacamar, Collared Hawk, Great Black Hawk, King Condor, Bat Falcon, Russet-backed Oropendolas, Purple and Violaceous Jays, and more. Back to Sacavacayoc Lodge. More owling after dinner. (B, L, D)
DAY 6: SACHAVACAYOQ – PUERTO MALDONADO – FLIGHT TO CUSCO.
Breakfast while enjoying roaring distant calls of Red-howler Monkeys and close calls of tinamues, motmots and other frenzy morning bird calls. We leave the Tambopata River as we return to Puerto Maldonado to get our bus transfer to the international airport. Flight to Cusco. Once arriving in Cusco, we will start visiting the colossal Sacsayhuaman Archaeological Park, including the Tambomachay and Q´enq´o sites. Cusco offers different views along the day becoming an interesting city to photograph, even more, the well-preserved Incan sites still show its magic past. We will be back at the hotel by sunset (B).
DAY 7: SACRED VALLEY OF THE INCAS
Today, we start our transfer to the Sacred Valley of the Incas, famous for its rural landscape, beautiful weather and clean views of the Andes, snow peaks such as Chicón, Salcantay and La Verónica. The trip shows extensive colorful croplands showing cultivars of the season. Weather is lovely weather. The drive will descend until Pisaq (2,800 m), a small town aside the Vilcanota River having intricate stone Inca terracing still in use today. A visit to the Pisac Archaeological Park will show one of the finest architectural styles. Later visit to the typical local market where we can observe men, women, and indigenous authorities displaying beautiful and elegant traditional dressing. The market still shows ancient trading traditions among people who come from other distant small villages. Thereafter lunch will be served, and in the afternoon the tour goes by several towns including Calca and Urubamba, before arriving in Ollantaytambo, a former agricultural, military, and religious center, where Inca architecture is also one of the finest. This center was built to protect the valley against possible invaders, and is presently considered the best preserved and the only living Inca town today. A walk along its narrow streets will show how Inca towns looked like. Later transfer to Ollantaytambo train station to travel to Aguas Calientes, the gateway to Machu Picchu and located in the cloud forest. Night in Aguas Calientes (B, L)
DAY 8: MACHU PICCHU
After a solid breakfast, we will take a 20-minute bus ride up to the Machu Picchu citadel, perched 400 mts above the Urubamba River. The bus will ascend a truly spectacular landscape of the cloud forest and we will be able to see Machu Picchu in the early morning and take pictures before we continue with a guided tour throughout the Inca citadel. This landscape shows very steep forests hills frequently shrouded in misty clouds and downhill views of the roaring Urubamba River. We will learn more about the history and myths of this archeological wonder built aside a cloaked granite peak, the Huayna Picchu that towers the site. We will walk several other parts of this incredible site and photograph its unique beauty, magical and mysterious views created by ancient architects. Later we go by bus to Aguas Calientes for lunch, and at mid-afternoon, we will take the train/bus back to Cusco. Transfer to hotel. (B)
DAY 9: CUSCO-PUNO
This morning begins with a transfer to the bus station; our bus departs at 07:00 hours and it takes us to Puno. We will ride through the Ruta del Sol (Sun’s route), which takes around 10 hours. The touristic bus offers several stops and guided visited in some small historical villages and pre-Incan and Incan archaeological sites, such as Andahuaylillas, Raqchi, Sicuani, La Raya and Pucara. We will arrive in Puno at 17:00 and transfer to the hotel. (B, L)
DAY 10: PUNO-UROS-AMANTANÍ
Early in the morning we will be picked up from our hotel between 7:45 to 8:00 hrs to be transferred for a boat ride in Lake Titicaca, first to the floating Uros Islands for about 30 min and then we continue to the Amantaní Island where we will enjoy not only beautiful landscapes of Lake Titicaca but also we will learn about local customs and traditions. Islands in Lake Titicaca offer very colorful nature and colorful rural landscape. After our lunch in a small local restaurant and in the afternoon we will visit some archaeological remains, sacred ceremonial temples and the Pachatata (one of the highest points of the island). After dinner, we will get to our local house which has basic accommodations and services and spend the night there. (B, L, D)
DAY 11: AMANTANÍ-TAQUILE-PUNO
After breakfast we continue navigating towards the Taquile Island, and we will arrive to one of the ports of the island, from here we hike for approximately one hour. At the end of the hike, we will be welcomed by the members of the community. Once again, this islands offers impressive views of locals dressing traditional dressing. The island still maintains a well-preserved cultural wealth including an ancestral organization and customs, a communal economy and values. We will be able to participate on the locals’ daily activities and hear some traditional music live. Lunch will be served typical meals produced locally in small restaurant. By mid-afternoon we will return to the city/hotel of Puno approximately at 5:00 pm, crossing Lake Titicaca enjoying more views of Lake Titicaca by sunset. (B)
DAY 12: PUNO-JULIACA-LIMA (OR BOLIVIA)
Transfer to the Juliaca Airport to fly to Lima or will be transferred to the bus station if you continue to Bolivia. (D)

Included

  • Transfers in and out
  • Train to Machu Picchu on Expedition
  • Professional guide
  • Meals as described in itinerary as B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner
  • Accommodation on 3-stars hotel/hostel (11), local house (1)
  • Entrance fees

Not Included

  • Flight Lima-Arequipa, Arequipa-Cusco, Juliaca-Lima
  • Local airport taxes
  • Tip
  • Personal expenses
  • Travel insurance

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Testimonials

  • A month ago we visited Tambopata, thanks to the recommendation of David, because his experience working for many years in this area, convinced us to know the jungle of Puerto Maldonado and we do not regret it. It was a unique and wonderful experience. The whole organization was perfect for us, we felt very safe with our specialized guide and traveling by boat. Thank you for the incredible moment visiting Tambopata!

    Gunter & Kornelia Billstein (2019) Germany
  • Our trip to the Tambopata Rainforest was a great experience!

    A wonderful place to get away from the outside world and have a moment with the environment and with ourselves. Thanks to David’s experience who recommended us to visit this beautiful place.

    Esther & Marta Pinedo, Martin Bengoa & Imanol Ruiz (2019) Spain
  • Our trip was over the top!! We have had and amazing time in the north of Peru and Cusco, visiting the Lord of Sipan, Chan Chan Archeological Center, Huanchaco beach, Machu Picchu and doing vivencial tourism in the Sacred Valley with the Yachaqs Community. Very impressed with every place we visited.

    Thank you very much for organizing an excellent time in Peru.

    Terry Hesselden, Arlene Westoby & Beverly Barker (2019) Canada
  • Very impressed by the effort, professionalism and responsibility of each one (guides, drivers, etc). We are very satisfied with our trip in Peru. Knowing the Amazon and Machu Picchu were part of my best experiences.

    Debbie Yip and Grace Goh (2019) Singapore
  • We have been travelling very often but honestly speaking the tour in Peru and the services around has been the best so far! … (the) staff very friendly and the guides experienced: Mauricio and David very passionate about their job, excellent knowledge … of Peru like history, geography, politics, religion, etc, and with our drivers felt safe in all our trip… excellent!! Always supportive and very flexible. Keep it up!! Many thanks

    Claudia Signorelli & Norman Memminger (2018) Switzerland and Germany