Tucked under the tawny skirts of formidable foothills about 15kms/9.3 miles north of Cusco as the condor flies, via a narrow road and hairpin turns, the Sacred Valley holds its head high. The valley has long been the home of attractive colonial towns, isolated weaving villages, handicraft markets and lofty 10th and 11th century Inca Citadels of Pisac, Ollantaytambo and Urubamba.
Visiting the Salt Mines and Moray terraces, which were made by building containment walls filled with fertile earth. They were watered through a complex irrigation system. At the base of the terraces, there is a rainwater storage system. The entire system allowed for the cultivation of the Incas to grow over 250 types of vegetables.
Explore amazing ruins and the fabled Lost City of the Incas, Machu Picchu. The Inca City of the Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu is the articulating center of its surroundings, a masterpiece of art, urbanism, architecture and engineering of the Inca Civilization. The working of the mountain, at the foot of the Huayna Picchu, is the exceptional result of integration with its environment, the result of a gigantic effort as if it were an extension of nature.
Enjoy the natural colors of the rarely visited Rainbow Mountain Trek, hiking through some isolated communities, in which you may interact with the local people who are still keeping the culture alive! You will see snowcapped peaks, herds of llamas, glaciers and turquoise lakes, all set within an incredibly colourful mountain range. The Rainbow Mountain trek offers a selection of wildlife including soaring condors, vicunas, bobcats and pumas. The colourful sandstone mountains in the Vinicunca area is probably the coolest thing you will see in Peru.
We will pick you up at your hotel at 7am, with our private van and head towards the Sacred Valley of the Incas, taking the direct route to Pisac. We drive first to the Ccochahuasi Animal Sanctuary, which has a variety of Peruvian animals including a Peruvian Puma, and the great Condor, the national bird of Peru. Then you are off to the mirador of Taray to enjoy a classic view of the Urubamba valley with crops dressing the mountains like a carpet. Onward, we drive to the archaeological site of Pisac, where you can see the biggest Inca cemetery with more than 2000 tombs. There we admire the incredible farming terraces carved into the mountain, explore the Inca tunnel and the religious area of this important citadel. Here we will spend more than 2 hours, exploring the Inca city. Then we head back to the colourful market of Pisac, spend some time visiting it with all of its handicrafts and treasures to discover and then drive to Urumbamba for lunch.
With its timeless charm, we visit the archeological site of Moray, also known as “The Greenhouses of the Incas” an evolutionary bowl of ecological terraces. The terraces are carved into a huge bowl, which were excavated by the Incas for agricultural purposes. The terraces have varied microclimates, depending on how deep into the bowl they are placed. It is believed they were used by the Incas to discover the optimal growing conditions for their different crops.
Expanding on our journey to the colonial town of Maras, you ascend downhill to the pre-Inca salt mines. A hot spring at the top of the valley discharges a small stream of heavily salt laden water, which is diverted into saltpans and evaporated to produce a salt that is used for both human and animal consumption. Finally, we drive to Ollantaytambo, having time to explore the age old and bustling Inca village and the massive Inca Ruins, with a tour provided by our guide. Then at 7pm, we will take the Expedition train to Aguas Calientes where we will spend the night in a hotel.
Bursting out with excitement on your final surreal day, we take the 5.30am bus to Machu Picchu archeological site, arriving in time for the sunrise, making sure we tour every nook and cranny of this New 7 Wonder of the World and UNESCO World Cultural Heritage site. On your 2.5 hours private tour, your guide will expertly direct you through the energetic ruins and its diverse main streets. Then on your own, you can wander around the town squares of the world’s spiritual center of esoteric wisdom as well as climb the intricately carved stairways made of stone until the end of your session time.
If you wish to indulge in a few of the following activities on your own, you can (not included in the price)
After your time to enjoy Machu Picchu, you will descend to Aguas Calientes at 12pm. You can take in a leisurely lunch or explore Aguas Calienteshandicraft market and board the Vistadome train by 5:23pm for the return trip to Cusco to Poroy train station and then you will be driven back to your hotel in our private van, arriving around 8:30pm (from January through April the train only goes to Ollantaytambo)
We will pick you up from your hotel at 4am, and begin with our amazing Rainbow Mountain Trek Adventure. We set out on our drive through the South Valley; ending up at the trailhead at Quesiuno, (4,326 m / 14,189 ft) is 3 hours. Along the way, there are amazing views of farming Inca terraces, valleys and rocky mountains.
Once we reach the train-head, we start on our hike following a lovely stream. The herds of alpacas and llamas all around you will immediately surprise you. Continually you will have views of the Ausangate Mountain as we hike through different villages and interact with the local people, who are still keeping the culture alive,
After a total hike of 3 to 3.5 hours, we finally reach our destination….the Rainbow Mountains (5,020m /16,466ft). After being awed by their beauty, you will have time to explore the area. You can take pictures or just soak up the environment. We will spend approximately 30 minutes at the top. At this point, we hike back down the way we came. The hike takes 2-3 hours. Our private van will be waiting for us when we return. We will embark on the 3-hour drive back to Cusco and drop you off at your Cusco hotel, arriving around 8:00 pm.
After having breakfast at the hotel, enjoy your remaining time in Cusco city then in the afternoon we will drop off at the airport to take your plane back to Lima.
***Private service is available for $100 more per person.
***All entrance fees are included and we operate our tours in small groups averaging 5 persons with a maximum of 8!
SAM (initials of Saul Alvarez Montalvo) Travel Peru is a family owned travel agency and direct local tour operator based in Cusco with personal experience over many years of trekking. SAM Travel Peru is a 1oo% Cusquenian Company without any shareholders.
My dream as the owner was to create small personalized tours & treks strictly and only operated by local professional staff catering in PERSONALIZED and HIGH QUALITY SERVICE.
We take pride in having a reputation as being a RESPONSIBLE & SUSTAINABLE tour operator. My staff are my extended family. I ensure they are supported financially by paying them a good wage. I am proud of my team without them I couldn’t give the best service and lifetime experiences to our clients.
In an effort to provide a more personalised service to our passengers, we in SAM Travel Peru have a policy that our groups will not exceed 8 people. This fact alone sets us apart from other companies that operate departures with bigger groups.
I am very proud of my guides! Highly professional, speaking in fluent English and very knowledgeable. Passionate for the Inca heritage/ history, dedicated to a steady personal development and learning to ensure that you receive accurate and recognised theories about the Inca Andean culture. Fun loving, great sportsmen and well educated some having a degree in Archaeology, Botany, History or Anthropology. Others are great entertainers and the best “Salsa Dancers” on this side of Machu Picchu.
SAM Travel Peru has always believed that we should “give back” to the communities we pass through on our treks. Therefore, as part of our commitment in responsible tourism, we socially support and employee from these communities.
SAM Travel Peru is proud to be able to support these beautiful people, not only in hiring them for work but to bring things back to grassroots, to share in their home and families. This makes us happy to have a holistic approach with our highland employees and their families!
A beautiful reflection of our attitude in everything we do, is that we wish to make life richer and more meaningful for all involved.
Please read carefully the following information; it will help you answer all of your questions about our services and Sacred Valley & Machu Picchu Tour.
You will be welcomed at Cusco airport and taken to your hotel, please ensure that you inform us of your full flight details at least 14 days prior to your trek. Look out for our representative holding an orange board SAM Travel Peru at the arrival terminal. It can be done on any date that is best suited to you!
It will take place the night before the Sacred Valley & Machu Picchu Tour departure at 6pm in our office which is located at Calle Santa Teresa Nº383 ; 303 (second floor), we are next to SUBWAY restaurant.
Of course! During the Sacred Valley & Machu Picchu Tour your main luggage can be store at our office or at your hotel, both are for free. Please don´t pack anything you will need for your hike.
Please be ready with the following information (FROM EACH PARTICIPANT in your group). We cannot purchase an an entrance to Machu Picchu or the train without the following information:
SECOND, we require a deposit of US$200.00 per person in order to purchase a your entrance to Machu Picchu and train ticket. You can make you deposit by clicking on the VISA or PAYPAL symbols on the top of our home page, or you can click on the VISA or PAYPAL symbols on our booking page or click here on the payment method of your choice, either VISA or PAYPAL.
It would be greatly appreciated if you pay in cash at our office (US dollars or Peruvian soles) here in Cusco. We have many cash machines in the historical center to withdraw money. You can also pay by VISA or PAYPAL online but you will have to pay a 5.5% service charge, charged by VISA and PAYPAL. To pay your balance through PAYPAL, you need to log into your PAYPAL account using our email address of firstname.lastname@example.org.
Unfortunately the answer is “No”. Once the tickets have been bought the government does not allow any changes, so we can’t change any departure date after the tickets has been bought. Tickets are also not transferable nor refundable.
*** If you cancel your Sacred Valley & Machu Picchu Tour, the deposit is not refundable at all!
Yes for sure! You have to bring your original passport and it is very important that it is the same passport number you sent to us to book your entrance to Machu Picchu, train ticket, other entrances and reservations. The rangers will check when you enter Machu Picchu. The train company will also check your passport before allowing you to board the train.
In case you are renewing your passport or changing your name, go ahead and send us your old passport information to secure your permit, and we can change it when you get your new passport number or updated your name for a fee of $25 per person. We must have a copy of your old and new passport to make the change. Before you change your passport keep a copy of your old one.
If you do not wish to pay this fee you will need to bring both passports to Peru with you. You can enter Peru with your new passport but you will need to show both passports, old and new to be to enter into Machu Picchu or the train. If you do not have both you will not be allowed to enter into Machu Picchu or get on the train. They are very strict about this here!!
First I would say that the weather is very unpredictable and it’s difficult to foresee. We recommend you to bring a warm jacket for early morning and rain poncho in case of a rain shower.
Absolutely! Included in our packages is dropping you off at your hotel on the return from your trek or tour. If you have booked your hotel in the Sacred Valley like Ollantaytambo or Urubamba, we will drop you there too!
If you’re happy with the services provided, a tip – though not compulsory – is appropriate. While it may not be customary to you, it’s of great significance for the people who will take care of you during the tour. It inspires excellent service and is an entrenched feature of the tourism industry across many SAM Travel Peru destinations. Of course you are free to tip more or less as you feel, depending on your perception of the quality and the length of your tour. Remember, a tip is not compulsory and should only be given when you receive excellent service.
Yes, we are a local sustainable & responsible tourism operator for that we incorporate the universal principles of tourism: protect the environment and benefit the local communities respecting their culture and religion. With this in mind, we have trained all our staff to know, understand and respect the local places and it´s people.