Trip Leaders: Kevin Macpherson and Lori Putnam, with Mel and Leslie Dinkel
Trip Cost (Double/Triple Occupancy): $3923
Our Cusco/Machu Picchu Adventure
August 11 - Day 1 – Arrive Cusco – Our members will aim to arrive about 5 PM. Our private shuttle will take us to our boutique hotel, hand-selected by trip veterans for its comfort, authentic feel and location directly on the stunning Plaza de Armas.
August 12 - Day 2 – Cusco Walk/Sketch/Photograph Tour - This day our expert guide will take us on walking tour of Cusco. Nestled at about 11,000 feet in the Peruvian Andes, this fascinating city was once the capital of the Inca Empire. It is now known for its archaeological remains and Spanish colonial architecture. We will explore the Plaza de Armas, the central square in the old city, with arcades, carved wooden balconies and Incan wall ruins. The baroque Santo Domingo Convent was built on top of the Incan Temple of the Sun (Qoricancha), and has archaeological remains of Inca stonework. Chocolate has a special place in the history and hearts of Peru and its people, and we will visit a “Choco Museo” where we can have a taste. We will stop for lunch, and will set aside the balance of the afternoon for you to paint on your own, photograph or rest while getting accustomed to our new altitude. We will make arrangements for an optional dinner at 6:30 p.m.
August 13 - Day 3 – Sacred Valley Part 1 – After an early breakfast, we will be picked up at our hotel to head for magnificent Sacred Valley. Potential stops include: the village of Chinchero, the old church, and traditional potato fields. Other options include: an exposé by traditional weavers on their ancient practices, the Ruins of Ollantaytambo, the Maras Salt Mines, as well as some other worthy sites along the way. As is the Local Hope tradition, we will share our good fortune by delivering backpacks, school supplies, and warm jackets to children in need in one or more of the villages. For lunch we will stop at a buffet renown for its delicious traditional fare at Urubamba. We will return in the afternoon, and allow time for resting prior to an optional dinner scheduled for 6:30.
August 14 - Day 4 - Train to Aguas Calientes - After breakfast we will board a bus for Ollantaytambo and catch a train to Aguas Calientes, also known as "Machu Picchu Pueblos," an intriguing little town located on either side of train tracks at the base of Machu Picchu. You are on your own to explore, paint, and photograph this mini-city in the shadow of Machu Picchu. Shop, lunch, have coffee at a local shop and rest. We will offer an optional dinner a bit earlier than other days (time TBD), to ready ourselves for exploring the vast Machu Picchu ruins.
August 15 - Day 5 – Machu Picchu – We will board an early morning bus this morning to explore the wonders of Machu Picchu, with options to paint, hike, or a combination. Some may wish to return to Aguas Calientes to paint or rest. Be prepared to be dazzled!
August 16 - Day 6 - Waterfall, Vistadome Train Return – After breakfast, you may decide to photograph, sketch, paint, hike or rest. For those prepared for a rigorous hike, we’ll go early in the morning to the locally revered Waterfall at Alcamayo. We will have lunch in Aguas Calientes, then return on the Vistadome Train in the early afternoon and catch a bus at Ollantaytambo to return to Cusco around 5:30. An optional group dinner will be arranged.
August 17 - Day 7 – Sacred Valley Part 2 – Today is the show-stopper when we will blend sketching, painting and photography time with visits to one or more of the gems of the Incan civilization, stopping for lunch along our route. These include archeological sites dating to the year 1438. Among highlights we’ll select from are Temple of the Sun, the shrine (or fortress) Sasayhuaman, and the Quenqo Temple. We will learn the significance of “Pachamama.” Animal lovers hold on to your hats! At the Awana Qancha Sanctuary, we’ll not only learn the difference between llamas, alpacas, guanacos and vacuñas, but we’ll get to meet them up close and personal!
August 18 -Day 8 - Group Trip - The group will return to a favorite location near Cusco to sketch, photograph and paint.
August 19 - Day 9 – Free Day in Cuzco, Farewell Dinner - This is a free day to paint, photograph, sketch, explore, shop, rest in and around our hotel. This night we will gather for a very special farewell dinner at the home of our illustrious guide, a local community organizer, sharing our favorite experiences with one another, and our good fortune. In this village which was particularly hard-hit by the pandemic, we will share backpacks, school supplies and jackets with local children.
August 20 – Day 10 – Homeward Bound - Today, board flights for home. This Machu Picchu experience is sure to make memories that will last a lifetime! Transportation from the hotel to the airport will be provided.
Note: If you feel for any reason that you may need to cancel, please buy trip insurance, as your deposit cannot be refunded nor trip fees refunded within 90 days of travel. Please see our full refund policy included in the online application. Thank you for your understanding! One option for trip insurance is https://www.worldnomads.com.
FLIGHT BOOKING INFORMATION – To Come.