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The Amazon rainforest is legendary throughout the world as an ecosystem rich in vegetation, wildlife and indigenous culture, and one which is currently under constant threat from mankind.
The River Amazon’s source is in Peru, and the river carries around 20% of the world’s fresh water. The rainforest covers almost half of Peru and extends into 9 other South American countries. It contains approximately 50,000 species of higher plants – a staggering twenty percent of the world’s total. The tree canopy is so dense that almost no sunlight penetrates to the forest floor and there is very little undergrowth. Animal and bird life is incredibly rich, including colourful macaws and toucans, several species of monkey and the rare tapir, jaguar and Andean spectacled bear. Giant otters, caimans, capybara and piranha live in the many waterways.
This is your chance to experience the amazing diversity of flora and fauna set in part of the most famous and awe-inspiring rainforest in the world! We travel by plane and then river boat to our lodge on the banks of the Tambopata River, and explore the trails and waterways on foot and by boat. This isn’t a luxury experience, but it’s an unforgettable adventure in a unique and threatened world.
Lake Titicaca is the highest navigable lake in the world, lying on the high altiplano at 3856m above sea level, straddling the Peru-Bolivian border. It is home to the legendary Uros Islands – floating reed islands where the Uros people have lived for centuries. We visit Amantani Island, with its mountaintop temples to Pachamama and Pachatata (earth mother and father), and stay overnight with local families. We then move on to Taquile, famous for its intricate, brightly-coloured weaving. The lake views are fabulous, but the highlight of the trip is the glimpse into the everyday lives of the local people, from cultures pre-dating the Incas by a thousand years.
Those with less time or not wishing to continue to the Colca Canyon will transfer from Puno to the airport at Juliaca (approx. 45 mins) for the flight to Lima; connect with international flight to UK (arriving Day 5). Please refer to the above itinerary for more details on this extension to include the Colca Canyon.
Following on from Lake Titicaca (see below), we then move on to the magnificent Colca Canyon, the deepest canyon in the world, where we immerse ourselves in jaw-dropping scenery and fascinating small towns. We also have time to stop at Cruz del Condor, the famous observation point, to marvel at condors flying breathtakingly close – likely to be one of your top highlights from Peru!
Those with less time can fly to Lima after their time on Lake Titicaca (please refer to the below option).
Anyone looking for a fun day of alternative adventure should try this great white-water rafting trip, which takes you down a beautiful section of the Urubamba. Rafting is a fun sport, suitable for all ages – no experience necessary!
The Urubamba River rises in the Andes and flows through the heartland of the former Inca Empire. The section we run is usually the Class III-IV Chuquicahuana section located above Cuzco, where a gentle start allows us to practise our technique before the river takes us through a beautiful canyon with views of the surrounding peaks and fun, adrenaline-pumping rapids. Rafting is a participatory team event, so your paddle is not just for decoration! Beware: you will get wet!
This day-trip replaces your free day in Cuzco at the end of your challenge; you will get back to the hotel mid-to-late afternoon.