Machu Picchu, Galápagos & Otavalo

18 Days

Discover two of the world’s most iconic destinations – the magnificent Inca citadel of Machu Picchu high in the Peruvian Andes, and the cradle of Darwin’s theory of evolution, the Galapagos Islands. Renowned for their prolific wildlife both on land and sea, every day exploring the islands is sure to bring excitement. In Ecuador, you’ll tour two very different areas of the mainland: the bustling city of Quito, the capitol city and the colorful lively market and town of Otavalo, surrounding by snowcapped volcanoes and beautiful pastoral scenery. In Peru, you will visit the iconic Sacred Valley for an opportunity to interact with indigenous peoples for an in-depth understanding of Andean culture and life.

Activities

  • Meet the artist in residence
  • Sacred Valley bike excursion
  • Guided visit to Machu Picchu
  • Full day walking visit in Cusco, including Cathedral, Koricancha, and Pisco Museum
  •  Enjoy a full menu of traditional Andean healing therapies
  • Snorkel near the Galapagos Islands
  • Kayaking, hiking & panga rides on the Galapagos Islands
Xploration Galapagos cruise

Itinerary at a Glance

Day 1 – Machu Picchu Tour

Arrival in Lima

Welcome to Peru! You’ll be met and transferred to the Wyndham Costa del Sol, located right near the airport, and is the starting point for your Peru Machu Picchu tour and Galapagos excursion.

Day 2

Arrival into Sacred Valley 

After breakfast, transfer to Sol y Luna in the Sacred Valley. Enjoy a late lunch at Wayra, the relaxed eatery on site. Enjoy murals and sculptures by Federico, the artist in residence, and Chef Nacho Selis’ Andean cuisine honoring the wealth of naturally organic ingredients first harvested here in the bountiful Sacred Valley by the ancient Incas. 

Day 3

Sacred Valley Mountain Bike Excursion

After breakfast, head into the Sacred Valley, known as the gateway to any Machu Picchu tour. Here, the last “living” Inca civilization endures, relatively unchanged since ancient times. Enjoy a full day, guided mountain bike experience. Explore small towns and villages, ride alongside the Huarán rapids and visit communities of Huicho, Urquillos and Huayllabamba. Return to the hotel for dinner and overnight

Day 4

Cusco Gardens 

After breakfast, transfer to the Inkaterra Machupicchu Pueblo. After lunch, explore the stunning gardens, including the largest native collection of orchids, at 372 species. Get to bed early this evening in preparation for an early morning tomorrow. 

Day 5

Peru Machu Picchu Tour

After a quick cup of coffee, depart for the Machu Picchu archaeological site, arriving in time for sunrise. Spend the morning with you guide exploring the site. Continue on to Cusco, arriving at the Monasterio hotel in time for a late lunch.

Day 6

Peruvian Cooking Class

Today, discover what makes Peruvian cuisine so unique during a private cooking class. Learn to prepare two signature dishes, enjoying the fruits of your labor for a lovely lunch. Explore Cusco on foot before returning to the Monasterio hotel.

Day 7

Old Town Quito 

After breakfast, transfer to Quito, arriving at the Casa Gangotena in time for lunch. This historic hotel is located right in the center of the world’ first UNESCO World Heritage Site. Explore the area on foot, enjoying dinner at a local restaurant.

Day 8

Otavalo 

After breakfast, transfer to Otavalo and Sacha Ji, a beautiful wellness-focused resort. Here you’ll experience the incredible natural energy of the surroundings and a full menu of traditional Andean healing therapies, yoga classes, meditation sessions, and massage treatments.

Day 9

Spa Day 

Today, enjoy a full day experiencing the wellness treatments available on site while at the same time learning about the indigenous culture from which the treatments are inspired. 

Day 10

Galapagos

This morning, transfer to the airport for your flight to Baltra, Galapagos. From the airport, it is just a short bus and Zodiac ride to the ship where you will embark the Celebrity Xploration for your seven night Galapagos cruise. This small ship is the perfect way to explore the Galapagos islands!

Day 11

Santiago and Bartolome Island 

Today, explore the hardened fields of black lava rock, walking over hardened lava flows, collapsed craters and lava ovens. Later, explore Bartolome Island, offering one of the region’s most iconic views. This island is home to the Galapagos penguin and a great spot for snorkeling. 

Day 12

Urvina Bay and Isabela Island 

Composed of five merged volcanoes, this large island is home to large land iguanas, finches and giant tortoises. Here you can walk through what was once a large underwater reef. After lunch, explore Isabela Island, whose shores are teeming with seabirds, penguins, sea lions, sea turtles, and nesting flightless cormorants.

Day 13

Espinoza Point 

Today, spend the morning exploring the half-collapsed remains of an ancient volcano, dramatic cliffs, and blue waters by Zodiac boat. 

Day 14

Santiago Island 

Santiago Island is famed for its black sand beach, coastal tide pools, and blue-water grottos that are home to Galapagos Hawks, sea lions, marine iguanas, and Galapagos fur seals. Spend the afternoon swimming and snorkeling here. 

Day 15

Santa Cruz Island

Today, visit the Charles Darwin Research Station. Here you will board a bus ride to the highlands to observe giant tortoises in the wild and walk through a lava tunnel. This is the most highly populated island and is a great spot for shopping as well.

Day 16

Genovesa Island 

Today, explore Genovesa Island. Be sure to keep an eye out for Galapagos doves, mockingbirds, storm petrels, and a short-eared lava owl. Hike from Darwin Bay’s soft white sandy beach into lush mangroves where red-footed boobies nest. Spend the afternoon snorkeling in the nutrient-rich water that attracts all types of marine life including sharks, sea lions, sea turtles, and the occasional manta ray. 

Day 17

Quito 

After breakfast, transfer back to Quito, arriving in time for a late lunch and overnight at Casa Gangotena.

Day 18

Travel home 

Today you transfer to the Quito airport for your international flight home to conclude your Peru Machu Picchu tour and Galapagos excursion.

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