Four Days to Machu Picchu with SAM Travel Peru and Super Guide Jhony
My family and I have just returned from one of the most amazing experiences of our lives. We were a party of 7 ranging in age from 14 to 75 who made the difficult but rewarding trip to Machu Picchu over 4 days/3 nights. From the moment I first contacted Saul, the proprietor of SAM Travel Peru, every aspect of the trip was managed incredibly professionally. Saul was on top of every question I had and responded to me at all hours of the day and night.
Upon our arrival in Cusco, Saul and our guide Jhony took over. They prepped us the night before our departure on what to expect. I can't emphasize enough how incredible a guide Jhony was. From the very beginning, he became a part of our family. He affectionately referred to my in-laws as grandma and grandpa, he regularly exhorted us, "come on family, we can do this!" He shared about his life, his family, his experiences and provided us with tremendous insight into not only the physical ruins we were seeing, but also the very spiritual beliefs that Peruvians continue to live to this day. We presented certain difficulties for the team given our ranges of age and fitness levels. Jhony was the difference maker. I still hear him telling me to "vamos David!"
I would like to give a special shoutout to Santiago, the Chief Porter and his team. They are literally the backbone of the operation. They were up before us, packed everything up as we left, passed us on the trail, set up lunch camp, tore down lunch camp, passed us again on the trail, and had everything set up when we finally rolled into overnight camp in time for dinner. Speaking of dinner, we were afforded some of the most incredible food we have ever eaten. Fortunado, our chef, and his assistant, never ceased to amaze us with Peruvian delicacies daily. Breakfast, lunch and dinner brought us a new culinary (and I am a foodie) experience. The quality and presentation were spectacular, especially when you consider the food was carried in and prepared, literally on the run.
If you have bothered to read this far I suspect you might be serious about this trip. I am a 57 year old, overweight man whose wife and children were concerned about making this trip (it was my idea). They also know I am stubborn enough to finish what I started. And I did. It was the hardest physical thing I have done in my life. But to share it with my wife, my 3 sons and my in-laws, is something none of us will ever forget. I was asked today if, knowing what I know now, would I have still gone? Without a doubt, yes!
Thank you Saul, Jhony, Santiago, Fortunado and the rest of the SAM Travel Peru team. You helped us make memories that will not soon be forgotten.