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Peru, Bolivia And Chile Tour

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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 . .
Country: Bolivia
City: Potosi
Duration: 20 Day(s) - 19 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 the highest navigable lake in the world where we visit Copacabana we also go for a short trek across the famous Sun Island (Isla del Sol) before reaching the Bolivian capital La Paz, which is also the highest capital in the world at 3660m/12.010ft.

We continue to Sucre which is also called “the White City” and Potosi where we visit the mines of Cerro Rico. We head south towards Uyuni from where we visit the famous 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....). We cross the Bolivian/Chilean border at Hito Cajon in order to reach San Pedro de Atacama where we visit the Tatio geyser field, the Moon Valley, and the Salar de Tara.

From the driest place on earth, we fly to Santiago to visit the vineyards of the Colchagua Valley, the pacific coast, and Viña del Mar and Valparaiso.

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 – The 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 tourist 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 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 when the evening is free.

Day6. Puno – Copacabana

After breakfast, we are transferred to the bus terminal for the bus to Copacabana. After the border formalities at Kasani, another ½ hour brings us to Copacabana where we get installed in the hotel. After lunch, we visit the Basilica of Our Lady of Copacabana which is a 16th-century church that houses the image of the patron saint of Bolivia. The church attracts thousands of local tourists throughout the year and it remains one of the two principal sacred places both for indigenous people and Catholics.

After lunch, we have the option to climb to the Calvario from where we have a beautiful view over the lake and the village or climb to Intiwatana or Horca del Inca which is believed to have been an astronomical observatory. If time permits we can visit both the Calvario and the Horca del Inca and the rest of the day is free to enjoy Copacabana.

Day7. Copacabana – Isla del Sol (Sun Island)

After breakfast, we walk down to the port of Copacabana from where a motorboat will bring us to the extreme north of the Isla del Sol (Sun Island) to the small village of Challapampa. First, we visit the museum and from here we walk slowly to the ruins of Chincana also called the Inca Labyrinth. From the ruins, we start our trek of the Isla del Sol which along the crest of the island takes us from the north to the south to the village of Yumani.

During our trek we have an unobstructed view of the sacred Lake Titicaca and if the weather permits in the background the Royal Cordillera with its snow-capped peaks. We spend the night in an Eco Lodge on the outskirts of Yumani.

Day8. Isla del Sol – Copacabana – La Paz

In the morning we descend the Inca Staircase (204 steps). This staircase which is still in very good condition will take us to the Inca Fountain and the port of Yumani from where we take the boat back to Copacabana. We have time for lunch and at 13h30 we take the bus back to La Paz. We arrive in La Paz around 17h30 and the rest of the evening is free.

Day9. La Paz – Valle de la Luna and City Tour

In the morning we descend to visit the Valle de la Luna (Moon Valley) in the southern part of La Paz. Because the area is composed of clay rather than rock erosion has worn away large parts of the mountain creating impressive formations that offer us a lunar landscape.

After this impressive visit, we return to the center of La Paz and our first stop is the Plaza Murillo (km 0), where we can see the Presidential Palace, the Parliament, and the Cathedral. We visit the colonial street Calle Jaén and the old part of the town from where we continue to the famous church San Francisco which was built by the indigenous people.

From here we visit the popular commercial zone of La Paz with its colored markets and we walk up the Calle Sagarnaga – the main shopping street for typical clothes and handicrafts. From here we also visit the Calle de las Brujas (the Witches street) and we finish our tour with a visit to the Indian market in San Pedro. The rest of the afternoon and evening is free to enjoy the highest capital in the world.

Day10. La Paz – Sucre City Tour

After breakfast, we are transferred to the airport for our flight to Sucre (departure times vary depending on the day). Arrived in Sucre we are transferred to the hotel and after lunch, we left to visit Sucre, the constitutional capital of Bolivia also called the White City. This gem of Baroque art and the Renaissance is the most European city in Bolivia and probably one of the most beautiful in Latin America. Founded in 1538 by the order of Pizarro, Sucre was destined to become the residence and the center of the Spanish bourgeoisie.

From an architectural point of view, Sucre has remained like a postcard of the 19th century which is of course part of its charm. Sucre is considered the most beautiful city in Bolivia, but apart from its beauty and atmosphere of the 18th & 19th centuries, Sucre also has the advantage of being the historic capital of Bolivia.

We visit the various museums, the Convento de Santa Clara and also the Casa de la Libertad, which saw the signing of the Declaration of Independence on August 6, 1825 (all visits may vary depending on the day because the museums are closed on Sundays and public holidays). The evening is free to enjoy Sucre.

Day11. Sucre – Potosi - Visit of the Mines (Cerro Rico)*– Uyuni

At 08h00 we leave Sucre by bus for Potosi. Potosi was once one of the largest cities in the world with a population of over 200.000 people and is one of the highest cities in the world. It lies beneath the Cerro Rico Mountain (“rich mountain”) which was the reason for the town’s historical importance because of its important silver ore.

After lunch, we visit the miner's market. Customs says it brings good luck to buy Coca leaves, cigarettes, alcohol, or even dynamite as presents for the miners that will receive us at their workplace. Once we have finished our purchases we visit one of the mines in the Cerro Rico mountain. The mines here are quite different from western mines, some of them are very old – dug out by hand by the slaves of the Inca Empire and later by African slaves during the Spanish occupation and very narrow and short (not for claustrophobics).

Our visit to Cerro Rico starts with the “Tio” (uncle) who is the protector of the mines and to whom the miners on many occasions make offerings in order to be protected from bad spells. We visit the 1st level of the mine and have the possibility to descend up to 3 levels below – 500 or 600 m into the depths of the Cerro Rico. After this impressive visit, we head back to the bus terminal to take the bus to Uyuni. Upon arrival, our team will transfer you to your hotel.

*Depending on the day it is possible that we visit the mines in the morning and if today falls on a Sunday we do a city tour instead

Day12. 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!

Day13. 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 afar, 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!

Day14. Ojo de Perdiz - Laguna Colorada – Geyser de Sol de Mañana – Polques Thermal Spring – Dali Desert – Laguna Verde – Licancahur (5971m/19.590ft) – San Pedro de Atacama

Our tour continues in the southern direction to 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 of 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 Laguna Verde continue south to the Bolivian/Chilean border at Hito Cajon. After the border formalities, we continue to San Pedro de Atacama where the rest of the day 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!

Day15. San Pedro de Atacama – Tatio geyser field – Valle de la Luna – San Pedro de Atacama

We leave very early to visit the enormous geyser field “Los Géiseres del Tatio”. With over 80 active geysers it is the largest geyser field in the southern hemisphere. We have breakfast on the site before heading back to San Pedro de Atacama by the village of Machuca.

In the afternoon we visit the Valle de la Luna which was created through the centuries by floods and winds giving it an extraordinary color and texture. The valley is also considered one of the driest places on earth, as some areas have not received a single drop of rain in hundreds of years!! We return to San Pedro de Atacama and the rest of 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!

Day16. San Pedro de Atacama – Salar de Tara - San Pedro de Atacama

After breakfast, we leave to visit the Salar de Tara which is only accessible by 4WD. The Salar de Tara is located approx. 100 km from San Pedro de Atacama in the National Reserve Los Flamencos and is probably one of the most impressive landscapes on the Altiplano.

Situated at 4300m of altitude the Salar is surrounded by volcanoes and we’ll see numerous volcanic rock formations, created by centuries of erosion, which present some particular formations; Guardianes de la Pacana (the guards of the Pacana), which are enormous stone pillars that rise vertically and lonely from the sand of the desert, or the Farallón de Tara (craggy stone). After this impressive visit we return to San Pedro de Atacama 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!

Day17. San Pedro de Atacama – Calama - Santiago de Chile

We transfer to the airport in Calama to take the flight Calama – Santiago. Upon arrival in Santiago, our team will be waiting to transfer you to the hotel and the rest of the day is free.

Day18. Santiago – Colchagua Valley - Santiago

Chilean wine is known worldwide and it would be a shame not to discover the making of one or more of the most prestigious Chilean wines during your stay in South America. Today’s visit is a trip back in time where we encounter the traditions of the Chilean countryside.

Approximately 1 ½ hours after leaving the hotel we find ourselves in the Colchagua Valley. Our tour begins with a carriage tour through a vineyard and we will taste several wines in the cellar. You can either have lunch at the vineyard or one of the best restaurants in Santa Cruz – the most important city in the region. We’ll spend the afternoon in a beautiful vineyard where we also see how Chilean wine is made. We return to Santiago in the afternoon and the evening is free.

Day19. Santiago – Valparaiso/Viña del Mar – Santiago

Today we visit Valparaiso and Viña del Mar. Nicknamed “The Jewel of the Pacific”, Valparaíso has been declared a world heritage site based upon its improvised urban design and unique architecture. In 1996, the World Monuments Fund declared Valparaiso’s unusual system of funicular elevators (highly-inclined cable cars) one of the world’s 100 most endangered historical treasures, and the city was declared a World Heritage Site in 2003. Built upon dozens of steep hillsides overlooking the Pacific Ocean, Valparaíso boasts a labyrinth of streets and cobblestone alleyways, embodying a rich architectural and cultural legacy.

We continue to Viña del Mar which is Chile’s main tourist attraction and also known as “La Ciudad Jardin” (The Garden City). You can have lunch in one of the many seaside restaurants and in the afternoon we visit the town: the Casino which is one the oldest gambling establishments in South America, walk along the beach, Reñaca and of course the botanic garden Quinta Vergara where the biggest musical festival in Latin American is celebrated each year. We return to Santiago where the evening is free to enjoy the last day on the South American continent.

Day20. Santiago Departure

According to your time of departure, you are transferred from the hotel to the airport. For international flights, it is recommended to arrive at the airport 3 hours before the 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 approx. 18 USD per person for the entrance fee.

General Information

Highlights: Lima, Cuzco, the Sacred Valley, Machu Picchu, Puno, Lake Titicaca, Copacabana, Sun Island, Sucre, Potosi, Uyuni Salt Flat, South Lipez, San Pedro de Atacama, Tatio Geyser, Moon Valley, Salar de Tara, Santiago, Valparaiso, Viña del Mar, Colchagua Valley

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 Bolivia; La Paz - Sucre

- National flight Chile; Calama - Santiago

Accommodation: 16 nights in a hotel/hostel, 2 nights in the shelter (South Lipez), and 1 night in Eco Lodge

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, home stay, camping, bus, and plane as indicated in the program: 16 nights in hotel/hostel, 1 night in Ecolodge, and 2 nights in a shelter
- 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 Bolivia La Paz – Sucre
- National flight Chile Calama – Santiago

Not Included in the Price:

- Entrance fees to sites visited, national parks, and museums as indicated in the program (allow for approx. 288 Nuevos soles (Peruvian national currency) in Peru and 285 bolivianos (Bolivian national currency) in Bolivia per person and 8.000 Chilean pesos (national currency in Chile) in Chile – this is an estimate and actual prices may vary)
- Immigration fee for border crossing Bolivia – Chile (allow for approx. 15 bolivianos (Bolivian national currency) 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: Please contact for the price (subject to availability, must be reserved and paid upon reservation). Attention; no single room is available for the nights with accommodation in a shelter, homestay, or camping.
- Possible visa expenses
- International flights

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