Cusco, Sacred Valley, & Machu Picchu
our destination expert
Cusco, Sacred Valley & Machu Picchu
Lightfoot Travel specialise in highly personalised luxury tours. We’ll design your own unique itinerary taking in the ancient wonders and stunning landscapes of Peru – in style!
Cusco is the gateway to Machu Picchu and the Sacred Valley, but if you plan to use it just as a stepping-stone, you’ll miss out one of the South America’s most memorable destinations.
The Imperial City of Cusco is the jewel of the Andes, a must-visit destination for any luxury tour. It’s a Unesco World Heritage site founded by Incas kings (in the shape of a puma), plundered by conquistadors, and lauded by all who come. Today, it stands perfectly frozen among the annals of time, beautiful and compelling.
In Cusco you can stand in awe of ancient stone temples, an enduring symbol of the master workmanship of the Incas. You can sip coffee in open plazas, beneath terracotta-roofed houses, grand colonial mansions and old Catholic churches. The cobbled streets throng with colourful fiestas, while everything from whitewater rafting to hot air balloon rides are available in the surrounding area.
The Sacred Valley
Next stop on a tailor-made luxury tour is the Sacred Valley, just northwest of Cusco. Hiking is one way to get there from the Imperial City, although there’s a scenic train journey too, which takes you through mountains, rivers and canyons.
Old colonial towns, and pretty villages lie scattered across the Río Urubama valley, while there’s a wealth of archaeological treasures. On the peripheries, stand the evocative Incan temple-forts of Pisac and Ollantaytambo clad to mountains high up in the clouds. You can try adventure sports ranging from rock climbing to river rafting in the valley.
The Inca Trail & Machu Picchu
Next on the itinerary is the Inca Trail, following the footsteps of ancient warriors through high mountain passageways, dreamlike cloud forests and rolling valleys strewn with orchids. And at the end of the world’s most famous trek lies the incomparable wonder of Machu Picchu.
Machu Picchu is the most dramatic of all Incan citadels. Shrouded in mystery, this ancient citadel never revealed itself to the conquering Spanish and was only discovered by the wider world in the 20th century.
The location adds to the mystery. It stands 2,304m above sea level, perched on the eastern slopes of the Andes: interconnecting palaces, storehouses and temples, and terraces and stone steps cut into the mountain itself. Surrounding misty mountain forests, and valleys and winding rivers below complete what is an extraordinary setting.
Machu Picchu stands as an enduring reminder of a lost civilisation at the peak of its powers and remains a must for any visit to Peru. With a tailor-made luxury tour, our regional specialists use their own experience and knowledge to design your perfect itinerary.