PEACE OF MIND
Antarctica & Arctic
A combination of two exciting destinations, with the emphasis on history, scenery and nature. Travel to Ecuador’s beautiful capital Quito and cruise the enchanting Galapagos Islands. Continue to Lima and on to Cusco to visit the Lost City of the Incas, Machu Picchu.
Destinations > Ecuador > Galapagos & Machu Picchu Discovery
10 nights hotel and three nights cruise accommodation, meals as indicated, sightseeing with local English speaking guides and flights as specified.
NOTE: Galapagos National Marine Park Fee of USD100 per person is paid locally and subject to change
Walk the cobbled streets of colonial Quito and explore the Galapagos Islands to discover more about the unique flora and fauna which resides in the archipelago. Travel to fascinating Lima to experience the city's modern and colonial highlights before departing for Cusco to uncover the Inca legacy, culminating in a visit to Machu Picchu.
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Spectacular Machu Picchu
Unique wildlife of the Galapagos Islands
Charming colonial cities of Cusco and Quito
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Upon arrival in Quito, transfer to your hotel. Nestled in a long narrow valley in the Andes, Quito is a mix of colonial and modern architecture. A UNESCO World Cultural Heritage site, its greatest treasures are the temples and convents that are perfect examples of the mixture of Spanish and Indian culture.
Explore Quito's old colonial quarter; with its narrow cobbled streets and eclectic architecture, it is the largest and most well-preserved historic centre in Latin America. You'll see the gothic Basilica of the Heart of Jesus, Independence Square, and the Metropolitan Cathedral, one of the most important churches in the city. Visit the Church of La Compania de Jesus, the jewel in the crown of colonial architecture in Quito and one of the finest examples of Spanish Baroque architecture in South America. Continue to the cobbled Plaza de San Francisco - one of the oldest and most beautiful sights in the city and the striking white Monastery of San Francisco. Conclude with a visit to the Equatorial Monument located 25km north of the city and which marks the exact Middle of the World, latitude 0º, where you can stand with a foot in each hemisphere. (B)
Transfer to the airport and fly to Baltra Island. On arrival you will be taken to the pier to board the M/Y Coral I for your three-night Galapagos cruise. This afternoon visit the Charles Darwin Research Station where the Galapagos giant tortoise breeding program takes place as part of the efforts to preserve the fragile Galapagos environment and where the famous Lonesome George (the last surviving specimen of his species) lived for decades. (B)(L)(D)
Visit Mosquera Islet, a flat island mostly covered with sand and barren lava rock. Home to a large colony of sea lions it is also an excellent site to view shorebirds such as herons and lava gulls. This afternoon stop at North Seymour Island. Walk amidst large nesting colonies of blue-footed boobies, frigatebirds, and swallow-tailed gulls. You will learn about breeding cycles of sea birds and sea lions and get a chance to see sea lions, land iguanas or perhaps even a Galapagos snake. (B)(L)(D)
Walk through the cactus forest in search of the endemic Santa Fe land iguana, the largest in the islands. Santa Fe is also home to a number of species, including sea lions, the Galapagos hawk, Galapagos snakes, a variety of finches and one of the four mockingbird species of the archipelago. Enjoy deep water snorkelling in search of marine life. This afternoon you’ll land on the northern part of the islet. As you reach its highest point, be on the lookout for tropicbirds, such as Nazca and blue-footed boobies, swallow-tailed gulls. See the large colony of smaller size land iguanas on South Plaza Island. Due to their proximity with marine iguanas, this is the only place on Earth where you will find the Galapagos hybrid iguana. (B)(L)(D)
This morning you’ll get a chance to see Kicker Rock from the boat as you travel north east of Puerto Baquerizo Moreno. This ancient and eroded volcanic tuff lava is formed by two rocks approximately 148m high, named for its resemblance of a sleeping lion. It is home to many Galapagos sea animals, such as birds, sea lions, blue and Nazca boobies and frigate. There are also rare sightings of swallow turtle gulls, tropic birds, and pelicans. Disembark on San Cristobal Island and visit Cerro Colorado Tortoise Reserve, to learn about the National Parks conservation programs. There will be an opportunity to visit the villages port to shop for arts and crafts and other souvenirs before transferring to the airport. Fly back to the mainland and overnight at the airport hotel. (B)
Fly to Lima. On arrival in Lima, transfer to your hotel. (B)
Enjoy a sightseeing excursion of colonial and modern Lima. First you’ll visit the historic downtown area of Lima, also known as the City of the Kings. Stop at the Main Square of Lima, where the Government Palace, Cathedral, Archbishops Palace and the City Hall are located, before visiting the Santo Domingo Convent. Continue on to the modern district of San Isidro and then to the famous Miraflores district, with a stop at the Parque del Amor for an incredible view of the Pacific Ocean. Finally, you'll visit the Larco Museum, which displays an unequalled private collection called the 'Treasures of Ancient Peru', featuring more than 45,000 artefacts. Here you'll discover more about the history of ancient Peru, which dates back over five thousand years. (B)
Transfer to the airport. Fly to Cusco and transfer by road to the Sacred Valley where you will spend the night. In Peru’s Andean highlands, the Sacred Valley of the Incas is a stunning and historic valley which formed the heart of the Inca Empire along with Cusco and the ancient city of Machu Picchu. When arriving at the Sacred Valley, it is impossible not to be impressed by the beauty of the Urubamba Mountains, verdant cornfields and meandering Vilcanota River. (B)
Today you'll immerse yourself in the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Your first stop is at Awanakancha, a weaving centre. Learn their ancestral way in which they process the wool, and obtain those vivid colours for their textiles. Visit the archaeological remains in the Inca valley of Pisac, which has a beautiful view across the River Vilcanota. The combination of ruins and landscape makes an unforgettable scene. Afterwards, stroll around Pisac market where local people sell handicrafts, before enjoying lunch at a local restaurant. Conclude the day with a visit to Ollantaytambo Fortress and spend time in the town with its narrow cobblestone streets that have been continuously inhabited since the 13th century. (B)(L)
Board the train to Aguas Calientes and enjoy the spectacular scenery along the way. Travel by bus to reach the entrance of Machu Picchu for your guided tour of this Lost City. Rising to an altitude of 2400 metres above sea level, Machu Picchu sits atop a mountain ridge overlooking the sacred Urubamba Valley, and the surrounding mountains and jungle make it a photographer’s dream. Enjoy a guided tour of this Lost City and learn about the city and the community who once occupied the site. Overnight at your hotel in Aguas Calientes. (B)(L)(D)
The morning is at your leisure to explore the town of Aguas Calientes. A second entrance ticket to Machu Picchu or hike to the top of Huayna Picchu can be pre-booked as an optional extra. In the afternoon, return by train to Cusco, arriving in the evening. (B)
This afternoon enjoy Cusco’s amazing colonial centre, an inheritance from its Andean and Hispanic past. Your tour begins exploring the fascinating open-air market of San Pedro, where you'll discover both the traditional and exotic ingredients of the exquisite Peruvian cuisine. Continue to the Koricancha Temple, an old Incan palace and main centre for the worship of the sun god, Inti. After the Spanish conquered Peru, the Dominican order built a lovely church over the top of this temple's foundations. Next you'll explore the main square, upon which sits the Cathedral, the beautiful Church of La Compania de Jesus, and other Colonial period buildings. Continue on to the San Cristobal Church, which is located on top of a hill and offers amazing views over the city. From here you'll travel to the Sacsayhuaman Fortress, which was built of enormous stone blocks that were expertly shaped by the Incas. The fortress is strategically located at the top of a hill, offering you a panoramic view of Cusco. You'll also visit the important archaeological sites of Qenko and Puca-Pucara. (B)
Transfer to the airport for your onward flight. (B)
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5 Days / 4 Nights
Discover the dramatic landscapes of the Galapagos Islands on this carefully planned itinerary including the main highlights...
An alternative to the traditional Inca Trail, the Lares Trek journeys through the Sacred Valley to Machu Picchu.
4 Days / 3 Nights
This cosy catamaran offers guest the chance to explore the Galapagos Islands in comfort and style.
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