- Explore Lima - the capital of Peru
- Witness the mysterious Nazca Lines
- Conquer the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu
- Meet the locals at an Andean homestay
- Spot soaring condors at Colca Canyon
- Sip pisco sours and eat ceviche
- Learn to speak in the Quechua language
A country that has immense historical importance, Peru surely is there on every traveler's bucket list. If you have a budget constraint, then this Peru on a Shoestring Budget will be perfect for your gap year adventures abroad. Starting from Lima, you'll travel to Nazca, Arequipa, Chivay and finally head to Cusco. The best part of the trip will be the Inca Trail hike. Explore the ruins of Machu Picchu and binge on some local food at Aguas Calientes. This trip has everything that you've imagined about Peru - and more!
Day 1 - Arrival in Lima
Welcome to Peru! You'll have to book your flights to Jorge Chávez International Airport in Lima, where you'll meet our coordinator. You can check into the hotel, rest for sometime and then head out to explore the capital city. In the evening, there will be a welcome meeting, where you'll meet your fellow travelers. You can head out for dinner with your travel mates once the meeting is over.
Day 2 - Lima to Nazca
You must have heard and read about the mysterious Nazca Lines a lot, but now is the time to witness it in real. It'll take around 8 hours to travel from Lima to Nazca.
Day 3 - Nazca to Arequipa
It's a free day for you to explore Nazca. The best option would be to opt for a flight over the famous Nazca Lines. That way, you'll be getting the best views. You can also visit the Nazca Desert Cemetery and Potter's Studio. In the evening, you can assist in preparing a traditional 'Pachamanca' dinner, before boarding the overnight bus to Arequipa.
Day 4 - Arequipa
The second most populous city in Peru, Arequipa has a slow laidback lifestyle and those who love history will have a great time exploring the 17th-century neoclassical Basilica Cathedral. You can also go for visiting Santa Catalina Monastery.
Day 5 - Arequipa to Chivay
Today, you'll be heading out to explore the spectacular Colca Canyon and soak in hot springs. The best way to explore Colca would be to go for a guided tour. Look for three different species of camelids: alpaca, llama, and vicuña, which are all typical of Peru.
Day 6 - Chivay to Cusco
From Chivay, you'll have to return back to Arequipa, and then, catch an overnight bus to Cusco.
Day 7 - Cusco
So you are finally here in the city that has so much importance that it's marked as a UNESCO Heritage Site. You have the entire day to explore the place. You can opt for the city tour and visit Qenqo, Koricancha, the Cathedral, Puca Pucara, Tambomachay, and the archaeological site of Sacsayhuaman. If you need some adrenaline rush, then go for white water rafting on the Upper Vilcanota River.
Day 8 - Cusco to Ccaccaccollo
You'll be traveling to meet the women working at the weaving co-op in the Ccaccaccollo community. Spend some time with them, learn a few Quechua words while staying overnight with one of the families. It'll be a great way to get a glimpse of their life more closely.
Day 9 - Ccaccaccollo to Ollantaytambo
It's time to head towards the stunning Sacred Valley of the Incas. Explore the ancient site and ruins right in the heart of Ollantaytambo city. Make sure you take adequate rest before you go for next day's hike!
Day 10 - 12 Exploring the Inca Trail
You'll be leaving Ollantaytambo by van and travel for 82 km approx, from where your hike will begin. You'll be crossing beautiful villages and enjoy scenic mountain views on the first day. On the second day, you'll have to start early to climb the long steep path to Warmiwañusca, better known as Dead Woman’s Pass. This is the highest point of the trek at 4,198m (13,769 ft). On the third day, you'll be crossing Runquraway at 3,950m (13,113 ft), and then reach the second pass at 3,700m (12,136 ft). It'll be the perfect dose of adventure that you've been looking for.
Day 13 - Machu Picchu to Cusco
Your day will start around 3:30AM, so that you can catch the views of the breathtaking ruins of Machu Picchu during sunrise. Enjoy the guided tour of this unique region and later, visit the Inca Bridge, if time allows. You'll catch the bus to Aguas Calientes for lunch. Board the train back to Cusco in the afternoon. You can go for a pub crawl in Cusco with your fellow travelers if they are not tired after the hike and journey!
Day 14 - Cusco
It's your last day of the tour. In case you've missed seeing anything in Cusco, then today, you'll have enough time to tick all that's there on your checklist. Visit the local market and pick up some souvenirs for your friends and family.
Day 15 - Fly back home from Cusco
As your adventure tour in Peru comes to an end, it's time to head back home or to another destination. You can book your flights from Cusco, and in case you need airport drop, you can get in touch with the coordinator.
Dates & Cost
- Visit Ccaccaccollo Community and Women's Weaving Co-op
- Local Living at Ccaccaccollo Community Homestay
- A night out and pub crawl in Cusco
- Overnight Colca Canyon excursion
- Inca Trail hike with local guide, cook, and porters (4 days)
- Guided tour of Machu Picchu
- All transport between destinations and to/from included activities
- Accommodation - Simple hotels (8 nights, some multi-share), overnight bus (2 nights), homestay (1 night), camping (3 nights)
- Meals - 10 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 5 dinners
- International/Domestic Airfare
- Visa fees
- Travel insurance (available at nominal cost)
- Departure transfer to airport (can be arranged at nominal cost)
- Any personal expenses
- Meals not mentioned