Kitty Coley Expeditions

October 8-15, 2008



Minimum 11 people

$3,428 per person, double occupancy (if deposit received prior to March 15, 2008)

$3,628 per person, double occupancy (if deposit received after March 15, 2008)

$ 435 per person, single supplement

The Inca city of Machu Picchu lay hidden from the world in dense, jungle covered mountains until "re-discovered" by the American historian, Hiram Bingham, in 1911. This 'Lost City' is one of the world's archaeological jewels and a must see for all world travelers. The forest clad mountains and deep gorges of the "Sacred Valley of the Incas" is the setting for our modern day exploration and unforgettable, once in a lifetime adventure.

Day 1, October 8 -- USA to Lima

We fly from our home city to connect with flight to Lima, arriving late in the day.  We are met at the airport and transferred to our hotel, Hotel Posada Del Inca San Isidro.

Day 2, October 9 -- Lima-Cuzco-Sacred Valley

We fly out early this morning to Cuzco.  Upon arrival, we transfer to a hotel for breakfast before we board our private bus and drive down to the Urubamba River Valley, the Sacred Valley of the Incas. The
Urubamba Valley undoubtedly was a key area of settlement to the Incas. Its agreeable climate and fertile plains make a rare and fruitful combination for the high Andes. The road we take from Cuzco will head north, over a pass and for 33 km before reaching Pisaq, a picturesque Andean village famous for its indigenous market where you can find varied and colorful handicrafts from the region. We will have opportunities for photos, shopping and absorbing this memorable experience, the first of many.  During lunch at a local restaurant, we’ll have our first taste of authentic Peruvian cuisine. We’ll then take the bus to the ruins of Pisaq for an afternoon hike. The ruins are located on the top of a mountain 2 1/2 miles away from town and are surrounded by impressive Inca terraces that are still being used for farming to this date, hike down to town, for approximately 1 hour, and drive to the Hotel Willka T’ika Garden Guesthouse for dinner and the evening.

Day 3, October 10 -- Moray-Moras-Ollantaytambo  

After an early breakfast, our bus takes us to the archaeological site of Moray. After a scenic drive off the main road we reach the mysterious circular terraces of Moray. This unique place is thought to have been used by the Incas for experimental agriculture to acclimatize plants from a lower altitude environment to higher lands. After a guided tour of the site, we will travel by bus for about 20 minutes to the trail head from where we will hike for about 1 hour to reach and visit the Salt Pans of Maras. Here, a salt water spring feeds numerous small pools; later the water will evaporate with the sun and leave salt deposits that are then shoveled into sacks to be sold in the markets. The salt is used as a preservative for foods in the jungle, for animal consumption and also for human consumption. 

Day 4, October 11 -- Sacred Valley-Machu Picchu

Early morning , we leave our charming hotel and board the train to Machu Picchu, passing through beautiful countryside, ancient Incan ruins dot the hillsides and along the rushing river which parallels the train tracks.  We arrive at the town of Aguas Calientes.  Leaving our luggage at our hotel, we take the
bus up winding mountain roads to magnificent Machu Picchu, located at 8500’, where we’ll spend the morning exploring the complex.  Machu Picchu was rediscovered by Hiram Bingham in 1911, and was unknown to the Spaniards. Its reason for existence remains under debate. Some maintain that it was built and populated by the family of one Inca ruler, Pachacuteq; others argue that Machu Picchu was a strategic center for maintaining a reliable supply of coca leaves for the priests and royals of Cuzco. Bingham himself theorized that the city existed primarily for strategic defensive purposes.  Still other findings suggest that Machu Picchu was a university town where the children of the leaders of other Andean cultures conquered by the Incas were taken to be educated. After exploring the lofty maze of empty plazas, temples, chambers, and dwellings with our guide, we’ll enjoy a buffet lunch at the Sanctuary Lodge, located right at the ruins.  This afternoon you may want to continue exploring with our guide, or join Kitty on a hike to the Sun Gate.   We descend the mountain by bus and return to our hotel, Hotel Pueblo.  We’ll enjoy another presentation by Kitty before dinner.

Day 5, October 12 -- Machu Picchu-Cuzco Cathedral

This morning we can enjoy a nature walk in the rainforest around our hotel then return to Macchu Picchu to hike Wayna Pichu or the Sun Gate or more of the ruins.  We bus down the mountain to our hotel and lunch.  We catch the train for our return to Cuzco at 3:15 p.m..  The journey takes approximately 3 hours; we descend at Poroy Station and are driven approximately 20 minutes to our hotel, Hotel Casa Andina Plaza, where dinner awaits us.  Depending upon our arrival time, Kitty may give us a final presentation.

Day 6, October 13 -- Cuzco

After breakfast we’ll take our bus just outside of Cuzco to visit important archaeological sites: Q’enko, a large limestone rock covered in carvings and Sacsayhuaman, the most impressive site near Cuzco .   The immense walls of
this complex are made up of huge stones distributed in a zigzag pattern in three platforms.  These platforms are connected by flights of stairs and doorways also in stone; one of these is 29ft tall and 15ft wide and weighs more than 100 tons.  The largest stone block found in Sacsayhuaman stands 27.88ft high and weighs 361 tons. 20,000 men were employed for the construction of the complex and it took approximately 50 years to complete.  Those wishing to hike down from Sacsayhuaman with Kitty can do so, and meet up  with those who choose to return to Cuzco by bus at a restaurant near the main square. Returning to Cuzco, we have lunch near the main square.  After lunch, we’ll have a guided tour of this charming city, including the church of Santo Domingo, the Cathedral and Plazas de Armas, or you may want to spend the time exploring or shopping by yourself. Cuzco is the heart of Tahuantinsuyo, Peru’s pre- Colombian Empire.  Located at 11,200ft. above sea level, Cuzco today is the oldest continuously inhabited city in South America, a fascinating and colorful paradox of the past and the present Dinner is on our own.   Our guide is available for restaurant suggestions.

Day 7, October 14 -- Cuzco-Lima

Our morning flight takes us back to Lima where we’ll have an orientation tour of the city.  Lunch is on our own, with some free time this afternoon, before we gather for our farewell dinner at the Huaca Pucllana Restaurant, with beautiful views overlooking 5th century ruins.  The site was begun in 400 AD, nine centuries before the Incas began building Macchu Picchu.

Day 8, October 15 -- Lima to USA

We transfer to the airport for our morning flight back to the U.S., where we connect to flights to our home cities.  We take with us new friendships and incredible memories.

Exploring the Peruvian Andes and Machu Piccu includes:

-Kitty Coley as naturalist tour leader (air, hotels,meals)

-Natural history lecture series by Kitty Coley

-Conference rooms or dining rooms used for lecture series by Kitty

-Accommodations as noted, all with private bathrooms

-Meals as noted

-Private bus for in-country travel with bottled water on bus

-Flight Lima-Cuzco-Lima

-Airport transfers

-Round trip train to Machu Picchu

-English speaking local guides with expertise in Inca culture and area hiking

-Hotel and restaurant taxes and service charges

-Any entrance fees

-Baggage handling-Local airport taxes

-International airport tax at departure from Lima to USA

-Tips for guides and drivers


The trip does not include:

-Meals not noted in itinerary

-Beverages with meals

-Items of a personal nature (i.e. laundry, beverages, telephone calls, etc)

-International airfare

Accommodations :

We stay at clean and comfortable hotels. Most are locally owned and operated, with three-star ratings and private baths.

Trip Difficulty :

Although this trip does not include mountain climbing it is vigorous due to altitude. Travelers should be in good physical condition. Most days are spent at moderately high altitude (7,000-15,000 ft) and the trek includes a number of steep ascents and descents. To fully enjoy this trip and avoid altitude sickness, you should be in good physical condition. This trip is not recommended for those with asthma or breathing problems. We do recommend arriving at least 1 day prior to the trip start to avoid travel related delays and to be fully rested for the start of your adventure. We can arrange your hotel and transfers for an additional charge.

Travel Insurance :

Although there are several good travel insurance companies, we recommend purchase of insurance through Travel Insured International; see the reservation form for more information. If coverage is purchased within 14 days of your initial trip deposit, the 'Pre-existing Conditions Exclusion' is waived (certain exclusions apply; varies by insurance provider).

Content, pacing, hotels, etc may be subject to change without notice due to circumstances beyond our control.  Be assured we will make substitutions as similar in quality and interest as possible.

To participate in this trip, complete the Reservation Form and mail it, along with $500.00 deposit to:


5435 E. Placita del Mesquite

Tucson, AZ 85712

All Travel arrangements are made through our long-time colleagues at Noble Journeys, featuring

unusual trips to Morocco.

If you are having trouble printing the itinerary, try this printer-friendly version:

Peruvian Andes itinerary.pdf 

To give you an idea about the natural and cultural opportunities you’ll encounter, here are a few photos from Kitty’s last trip to the Peruvian Andes: