Replies: 5 - Last Post: Oct 15, 2012 9:51 PM Last Post By: LuzGrylls
Sep 27, 2012 6:20 PM
Trip ItineraryA friend and I are spending 3 weeks in Peru in November. Is this the following a good plan? Is it true that the train from Cuzco to Aguas Calientes runs only several times a week?
1. 2 nights in Lima
2. Fly to Cuzco and leave the same day for Urubamba in order to spend a few days acclimating to the altitude.
3. Back to Cuzco for 1 night to catch morning train to Aguas Calientes.
4. 2 nights in Aguas Calietes to see Machu Picchu
6. Back to Cuzco for 3-4 days
7. Train to Puno for a few days
8. Fly or Bus to Ariquipe stay 1 night
9. Fly to Lima
10. Fly to Nasca
11. Back to Lima & US
Sep 27, 2012 6:56 PM
1The train runs several times a day to Aguas. Sometimes you will need to catch a bus to Ollantaytambo
However, I would edit a few things.
Spend a few days in Cusco to acclimitize, then head to the Sarced valley for a few days. You can catch a train from Ollantaytambo to Aguas Caliente for a trip to MP.
You only need 1 night here (catch a late train back the next night to get back to Cusco (everything in Aguas is overpriced and its not really a great town).
Puno doesn't need a few days. Stay here a night, go to the Lake for the day, then get out as fast as possible. Puno isn't much of a city. But does have a great backdrop, though its a slight let down.
Spend more time in Arequipa - and possibly do the Colca Canyon (as a day trip or as a multi-day trek).
Nasca (unless your planning to fly over the lines no point).
Sep 27, 2012 8:49 PM
2I agree with #1's replies. Other points to note:-
1) IMO Cusco and Machu Picchu should be your focus as they are much more interesting than say Lima where you should just spend 1 night. In Lima the ocean views in the Miraflores area are dramatic and the old city square and pyramid are worth a quick visit.
2) If I was staying in the Sacred Valley I would stay at Ollantaytambo which has a train station to MP and interesting Inca ruins. Urubamba is isolated, 30 minutes away from Ollantaytambo, and has little to offer.
3) Cusco and the nearby ruins is an interesting destination in itself and worth at least a few days.
4) Machu Picchu/Aquas Calientes is expensive. However, if this will be your first and only visit to MP, I recommend that you stay at least 2 nights at AC and catch the early morning buses to MP (or walk up there if you feel energetic, have spare time and want to save money). MP is a truly magical place and you could regret rushing it. All you need to do at AC is eat breakfast and dinner and sleep as the entire days should be spent at MP.
5) Mudslides may occur after heavy rains and block the Cusco-Ollantaytambo section of rail line. This happened in February. However, the Ollantaytambo-MP section of rail line wasn't blocked.
6) Agree about Puno. When I travelled there by bus from Cusco the Puno bus depot was securely locked up when we arrived. Security rapidly opened the gates, let the bus in, then just as quickly locked the gates behind us. As with nearby Juliaca crime is a problem here.
7) I wouldn't miss the Uros Islands though and you need a full day to do so. The Andina Private Collection is a safe, albeit expensive, out of town accommodation option. You would probably need 2 nights at Puno.
8) I haven't visited the destinations beyond Puno on your list so can't comment on those.
Edited by: chris1953
Edited by: chris1953
Sep 28, 2012 4:39 AM
Sep 28, 2012 6:55 AM
4To be honest, thats a fair assessment.
I would probably recommend rearranging OP's itinerary even further. Not so much due to that, but due to well leaving the best til last.
Go to Nasca - Arequipa - Puno - Cusco - Sacred Valley - MP and then return to Cusco-Lima and fly home.
I think overall, thats a more ideal itinerary. It sort of builds up to MP - a climatic ending to your trip. I did something similar, so by the time I got to Cusco I was pretty well acclimitized. So it might be a better way to acclimitize.
Oct 15, 2012 9:51 PM
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