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Peru And Bolivia Panorama Tour

Country: Bolivia
City: Uyuni
Duration: 14 Day(s) - 13 Night(s)
Tour Category: Classic Tours
Departure Date: Thu 01 Jan '99

Package Itinerary

Itinerary in brief

Upon arrival in Lima the capital of Peru we continue to Cuzco where we discover the town, the Sacred Valley of the Incas, and of course the famous Machu Picchu. We continue towards Lake Titicaca where we visit the floating islands of the Uros as well as the islands Amantani and Taquile before crossing the border to Bolivia and arrive in the administrative capital of Bolivia, La Paz, which is also the highest capital in the world at 3660m/12.010ft. We continue to the Salar de Uyuni where we discover the island with the giant cacti and the vastness of this 10.582km²/4.086mi2 big salt desert.

Still, in the southern direction, we cross the Lipez desert with its volcanoes, Lagunas as well as its rich animal life (Llama, vicuña, alpaca, viscacha, pink flamingos, foxes, Nandu, etc....). After this incredible visit to the most southern spot of Bolivia we return to La Paz and we visit Tiwanaku where we discover the wealth of this lost civilization which played an important role in the history of Bolivia.

Day1. Arrival in Lima

Today you arrive in Lima. Upon arrival at the international airport, our team will be waiting to transfer you to your hotel. There are no activities planned for today and depending on your time of arrival you might have time to explore the town.

Day2. Lima – Cuzco – City Tour

After breakfast, we head to the airport for your flight to Cuzco. Upon arrival, we are transferred to the hotel and after lunch, we start our city tour where we visit the archaeological sites of the town; Koricancha, the Cathedral, Sacsayhuaman, K’enkho, Puca Pucara, and Tambo Machay. The evening is free to enjoy Cusco.

Day3. Cuzco – Sacred Valley – Aguas Calientes

After breakfast, we visit the Sacred Valley and all the important Inca ruins in the area. We’ll see the ruins of Pisac with (depending on the day) the market, Urubamba, and Ollantaytambo - a superb Inca fortress made of megalithic stones. In the evening we take the train to Aguas Calientes - a small village where all the buildings are concentrated along the railway giving it a “gold-digger” ambiance where we spend the night.

Day4. Aguas Calientes - Machu Picchu – Cuzco

We leave at 07h00 or earlier by bus to visit the famous Machu Picchu. After this impressive visit, we return to Aguas Calientes to take the train back to Ollantaytambo where upon arrival we are transferred to the hotel in Cuzco and the evening is free.

The Citadel of Machu Picchu is the most important attraction in Cuzco. It was discovered in 1911 by the American explorer, Hiram Bingham, and is considered to be one of the most extraordinary examples of scenic architecture in the world. In Quechua Machu Picchu means “old mountain”. The Citadel was built on a hilltop that dominates the deep valley of the Urubamba river in the middle of the tropical rainforest. Machu Picchu was both a center of worship and astronomical observation and the private domain of the family of the Inca Pachacuteq.

Day5. Cuzco – Puno

In the morning we are transferred to the bus station to take the touristic bus that goes to Puno. On our way, we visit the church Andahuaylillas from the XVIIth century where we can observe some beautiful paintings. The tour continues through the valley of Cuzco close to the Huacarpay Lake where we make a halt at the pre-Inca site Pikillaqta from the Wari culture (XIIth century) which is partly destroyed.

We continue to the Raqchi ruins where we can observe the remains of the central wall of the Wiracocha temple, which was one of the highest covered buildings constructed by the Inca. We stop at Sicuani for lunch before we pass the Raya mountain pass at 4321m/14.180ft and we visit the thermal springs in the region. Our last visit is to the ruins of Pukará and we expect to arrive in Puno around 19h30 where the evening is free.

Day6. Puno – Uros – Amantani

We leave at 07h30 to visit the floating island of the Uros. The small islands are made of Totora reeds, which grow in the lake. The dense roots that the plants develop and interweave form a natural layer called Khili (about one to two meters thick) that support the islands. They are anchored with ropes attached to sticks driven into the bottom of the lake.

The reeds at the bottoms of the islands rot away fairly quickly, so new reeds are added to the top constantly, about every three months. The islands last about thirty years. The islands were originally created by the Uros to prevent attacks from their neighbors the Incas. After this fantastic visit, we continue to Amantani which is a small touristic island in the lake where its people still maintain ancient customs, there, we visit the ceremonial centers of the Pacha Mama and Pacha Tata.

Day7. Amantani – Taquile – Puno

After breakfast, we continue our island tour and after about one hour of navigation, we arrive at the Taquile island. This is quite a unique place at the lake where the inhabitants speak Quechua while all the other islands speak Aymara and the island is famous for its traditions and the lifestyle of the inhabitants. We return to Puno where the evening is free.

Day8. Puno – La Paz – Uyuni

In the morning we are transferred from the hotel to the bus terminal for the bus to La Paz, Bolivia, where we expect to arrive around 13h00. We will be transferred to the center of La Paz for lunch and the afternoon is free to discover the town and at 19h30 we are transferred to the bus terminal. The bus station is famous for having been built by Gustave Eiffel (Eiffel Tower in Paris, France) and used to be the railway station of La Paz. At 21h00 we start our journey to Uyuni and our route takes us first to Oruro from where we descend through Challapata where the asphalt gives way to dirt tracks.

If the first 350km/218mi seemed easy, some of Bolivia’s worst roads lie ahead of us; holes, mud, river crossings, cold and detours. Finally, after this adventure, we arrive in Uyuni around 07h00 where you have time for breakfast before the tour starts.

Day9. Uyuni – Colchani – Salar de Uyuni – Incahuasi – Cueva de las Galaxias – San Pedro de Quemez

We start our journey around 10h30 in the morning and our first stop will be the locomotive cemetery which is a vestige of more prosperous times. From here we continue to Colchani which is a small village situated on the edge of the Salar and whose inhabitants live from salt exploitation. In Colchani we discover how the salt is processed manually and we visit the small salt boutique, which also serves as a museum, where we can see large salt carvings and other objects (pottery, jewelry, tools, etc.).

After this impressive visit with the craftsmen on the top of the world we enter the famous Salar de Uyuni; the biggest salt desert in the world with an acreage of 10.582km²/4.086mi2. One of the particularities of the Uyuni Salt Flat is that it contains a reserve of 9 million tonnes of Lithium which represents 40% of world production. We head to the Island Incahuasi which mistakenly is better known as the Fisherman’s Island. This geological formation is a remnant of petrified coral and is covered in giant cacti that can get up to 12m/39.37ft high. From the top of the island, we have a wonderful 360° view of the Salar de Uyuni.

After lunch, our journey continues in the direction of Puerto Chuvica. We have the possibility to visit the “Cueva de las Galaxias” which is a strange phenomenon of fossil algae that reminds us that the ocean was present here all the way to Oruro. In the adjacent cave, we can observe the Chullpares which are Inca funerary remains. We climb to the viewpoint from where we have an unobstructed view of the desert and if we take a closer look we can also observe the fossil coral that once was part of an impressive coral barrier.

After this impressive visit, we continue to San Pedro de Quemez situated at the doors of the Lipez desert. We arrive at San Pedro de Quemez around 16h00 and the evening is free.*

*Depending on the season and the weather the itinerary will change and there are some sights that are not accessible at all times!

Day10. San Pedro de Quemez – Salar de Chiguana – Ollagüe Volcano – Siloli Desert – Ruta de las Joyas Alto Andinas (Lagunas Cañapa, Hedionda, Chiar Khota, Honda et Ramaditas) – Stone Tree - Reserva Nacional de la Fauna Andina Eduardo Avaroa - Ojo de Perdiz

We continue our tour of south Bolivia and from Puerto Chuvica we pass the Uyuni – Ollague railway, which is the property of the FCA (Empresa Ferroviaria Andina), before crossing the Salar de Chiguana. We observe the still active volcano Ollague and even from far we can see its fumarole. We follow the famous Jewel Route which is composed of the Lagunas Cañapa, Hedionda, Chiar Khota, Honda, and Ramadita.

Today we also visit the Stone Tree (please refrain from climbing on the rock) planted in the middle of the Siloli desert and at the end of the day, we enter the Reserva Nacional de la Fauna Andina Eduardo Avaroa where we arrive at the Laguna Colorada. This Alto Andina Laguna gets its name because of the red color which is caused by microscopic shellfish which is the principal nutriment of the rose flamingos that live in this area.

Due to climate changes (lack of rain) and the high evaporation of the Altiplanic basin the water level of the region Lagunas is reduced rapidly which year after year also reduces the population of the flamingos. Mid-afternoon we leave to get installed in our hotel Ojo de Perdiz and the evening is free.*

*Depending on the season and the weather the itinerary will change and there are some sights that are not accessible at all times!

Day11. Ojo de Perdiz - Laguna Colorada – Geyser de Sol de Mañana – Polques Thermal Spring – Dali Desert – Laguna Verde – Licancahur (5971m/19.590ft) – Villamar – Valle de Rocas – San Cristóbal – Uyuni – La Paz

Our tour continues in the southern direction to the Laguna Verde – one of the most southern points in Bolivia. We leave the Laguna Colorada in order to go even deeper into the Reserva Nacional de la Fauna Andina Eduardo Avaroa. We visit the boiling geysers of Sol de Mañana which is an impressive geothermal field with pits of boiling mud and strong smells of sulfur. Our tour continues in the direction of the thermal bath of Polques, a natural source of hot water where we have the possibility to go for a swim.

We continue through the South Lipez and we observe the “Damas del Desierto” which are enormous rocks planted in this barren landscape and carved by the wind and weather over the years. We also cross the Dali Desert, which was named in reverence to the Catalan artist because of the resemblance of the landscape with the unreal yet natural colors to the masters’ work.

We continue to the Laguna Verde and Blanca at the foot of the Licancahur where we stop to take a few pictures. The Laguna Verde gets its green color from the high concentration of lead, arsenic sulfur, and calcium – please refrain from bathing;-) From the Laguna Verde, we start our drive back north.

We pass by the small village Villamar which seems lost in the middle of the gigantic Lipez desert before passing by the biggest mining project in Bolivian history at San Cristobal. We arrive around 18h00 in Uyuni just in time for a quick dinner before getting the bus back to La Paz.*

*Depending on the season and the weather the itinerary will change and there are some sights that are not accessible at all times!

Day12. La Paz Arrival – Tiwanaku – Desaguadero - Puno

Upon arrival in La Paz (approx. 06h30) you are transferred to a restaurant in the center of La Paz for breakfast before we head towards Tiwanaku, the capital of the pre-Inca empire, for our visit to the ruins. Tiwanaku was one of the oldest civilizations in the world and is recognized by Andean scholars as one of the most important precursors to the Inca Empire.

We visit the Pyramid Akapana and the semi-subterranean temple as well as the archaeological area where we can see the Temple of Kalasasaya one of the largest and oldest ceremonial centers of the world. We also visit the famous “Puerta del Sol” (Gateway of the Sun) which is a monolithic structure that weighs about 10 tons. On the Puerta del Sol we can observe the Tiwanakota calendar which is expressed in 365.24 days distributed over 12 months.

We visit the archaeological museum where we can observe the Monolith Bennet which measures approximately 7 meters and weighs 20 tons and we also get an insight into the 13 centuries of history which makes Tiwanaku the oldest civilization in Latin America. After our visit to the site, we have lunch (not included) in a typical restaurant where we have the opportunity to taste quinua; the most important grain of the Andes. We then continue towards Desaguadero where we cross the border to Peru. A different vehicle will bring us to Puno where we spend the night.

Day13. Puno – Juliaca - Lima

According to the time of your flight, you are transferred to the airport in Juliaca. Upon arrival in Lima, we transfer you to your hotel and the rest of the day is free.

Day14. Lima Departure

According to your time of departure, you are transferred from the hotel to the airport in Lima. For international flights, it is recommended to arrive at the airport 3 hours before scheduled departure. End of our services

Important: The itinerary can change as a result of weather conditions and some sights are not accessible at all times – Lipiko Tours cannot be held responsible for any changes in itinerary and sights not visited as a result.

*If you wish to climb the Huayna Potosi the request has to be made at the time of reservation. Even if the request is made we can’t guarantee that there are places left (access is limited). If there are places that allow for applicable charges in USD per person for the entrance fee.

General Information

Highlights: Lima, Cuzco, the Sacred Valley, Pisac, Ollantaytambo, Machu Picchu, Puno, Lake Titicaca, Uros floating islands, La Paz, Salar de Uyuni, South Lipez, Laguna Colorada, Tiwanaku

Support Team: English speaking tour leader for the entire tour for groups of 4 people or more. For smaller groups, it is possible to book this tour without a tour leader. Instead, you would have guided visits with a local guide in your chosen language. Please contact us directly to receive a personalized quote.

Guaranteed departure: from 4 people

Group size: 4 to 12 people

Flights: Prices are valid only in certain tourist/economy classes which serve this destination. Therefore prices are subject to changes in case of unavailability at the time of reservation.

- National flight Peru; Lima - Cuzco
- National flight Peru; Juliaca - Lima

Accommodation: 8 nights in a hotel/hostel, 1 night in a homestay, 2 nights in the bus, and 2 nights in the shelter (South Lipez)

Porterage: Your luggage will be transported either by plane, car, boat, or bus. You will have to carry the personal belongings (camera, water, etc.) which you need during the day.

Tour Leader: In groups of 4 to 12 people you will be accompanied by a tour leader in the chosen language. His role is to make sure that everything goes smoothly during the tour and that each individual and the group as a whole are safe. Don’t hesitate to ask him if you are unsure of anything and, very importantly, to follow his advice.

Included in the price:

- Water and land transfers as indicated in the program
- Accommodation in hotel/hostel in double rooms, Ecolodge, shelter, homestay, camping, bus, and plane as indicated in the program: 8 nights in hotel/hostel, 1-night homestay, 2 nights in a shelter, and 2 nights in bus
- Meals as mentioned in the program
- The assistance of specialized local English speaking guides, their fees, and expenses
- The assistance of our local teams; driver(s) and logistics department (24/7)
- Visits as outlined in the program
- National flight Peru Lima – Cuzco
- National flight Peru Juliaca – Lima

Not included in the price:

- Entrance fees to sites visited, national parks, and museums as indicated in the program (allow for approx. 312 Nuevos soles (Peruvian national currency) in Peru and 300 bolivianos (Bolivian national currency) in Bolivia per person – this is an estimate and actual prices may vary)
- Meals not mentioned, drinks, tips, individual equipment, everything not mentioned in “included in the price” and all personal expenses - Individual obligatory personal travel insurance (this could be included with your credit card – please check with your credit card provider)
- The supplement for a single room: Charges in USD (subject to availability, must be reserved and paid upon reservation). Attention; no single room available for the nights with accommodation in shelter, homestay, and camping.
- Possible visa expenses
- International flights

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