Machu Picchu & National Parks of South America

Machu Picchu & National Parks of South America

Machu Picchu & National Parks of South America

Machu Picchu & National Parks of South America

Travel information 14 days MS Roald Amundsen
Departure
April 7, 2022
Price from $ 9,118
$ 7,700
Breakfast, lunch and dinner included

Let us take you on an adventure that begins in the Peruvian capital of Lima before experiencing the awe-inspiring ruins of Machu Picchu and other famous Incan sites in Cusco Then you’ll return to Lima and transfer to Callao to embark the ship to explore select highlights along the coasts of Peru, Ecuador, Panama, and Costa Rica.

Incan mysteries

After a night enjoying the many charms of Lima, you’ll fly to Cusco and visit the fortress of Sacsayhuamán on a hill overlooking the former Incan capital. You’ll also visit another impressive fortress at Ollantaytambo before boarding the Hiram Bingham train, which guides you to the ‘Lost City’ of Machu Picchu. You’ll have plenty of time to see more of Cusco, including its cathedral and convent, built on top of an Incan palace and temple.

Four countries and cultures

After your Incan adventures, you’ll fly back to Lima and transfer to Callao to embark the ship and continue your expedition at sea sailing toward Puntarenas. Weather permitting, we hope to land in Salaverry, where you may have the opportunity to join an optional excursion to the ruins of an ancient city and temple pyramids. From there, we’ll head to Puerto Bolivar, where bananas are exported by the boatload. Marvel at the wildlife at Ecuador’s ‘Other Galápagos’, Isla de la Plata, and meet Panama hat weavers in Montecristi near Manta. Next up are the stunning beaches of Cebaco Island, waterfalls in Golfito, and an optional excursion to Manuel Antonio National Park in Quepos.

Machu Picchu & National Parks of South America Machu Picchu & National Parks of South America
  • Day 1
    Lima, Peru

    'The City of Kings’

    Set on a strip of desert between the Pacific Ocean and the Andes Mountains, you’ll find the Peruvian capital city of Lima. It’s the country’s largest city, and it’s a modern, far-reaching metropolis where traditions and new trends converge in an exciting cocktail of culture and cuisine. Lima’s original name was Ciudad de los Reyes, or ‘The City of Kings’, and this name is well earned. Your adventure begins with a night at a centrally located hotel, but you could also arrange to come a few days early to more fully explore the city.

    The UNESCO World Heritage historic center is full of Colonial-era architecture, such as Plaza Mayor and the San Francisco Monastery. In contrast, the clay ruins of the Huaca Pucllana and Huaca Huallamarca ceremonial pyramids are remnants of the long-lost Incan civilization. There are at least four different museums you can explore for a deeper dive into pre-Columbian archeology. You might enjoy the bright and arty area of Barranco, complete with murals, creative cafés, and two of Lima’s contemporary art museums.

    Many say the ultimate Lima experience revolves around the food. Cuisine from the capital has made a splash the world over. Try it in one of the many internationally recognized and award-winning restaurants found here. One of Peru’s all-time gastronomic greats is ceviche, fresh fish marinated in tangy lime juice and other seasonings. This staple dish can be savored in many locations around the city, from upscale restaurants in Miraflores to salt-of-the-earth cevicherías at the fishing docks over in Chorrillos.

    Day 1
    Lima, Peru

    'The City of Kings’

  • Day 2
    Lima/Cusco/Sacred Valley

    'Navel of the World’

    In the morning, you’ll hop on a flight from Lima to Cusco, the former capital of the Incan Empire whose name means ‘Navel of the World’. The city’s original layout, in the middle of the highland Huatanay River valley, is thought to be in the form of a puma. At the location of the heart of the puma is Plaza de Armas, the site of Colonial architecture, colorful Carnival celebrations, and festive street parades. The puma’s head is Sacsayhuamán, a former fortress and temple complex towering over Cusco on the top of the hill. Sacsayhuamn means ‘Royal Eagle’, a reference to the mythical bird that was believed to guard the Incan Empire. The ruins sit over 12,000 feet above sea level, and a visit there provides great views over the city and the Inca-sacred moutain peaks of Ausangate, Pachatusan, and Cinca, of the Andes. Stroll the fortress’ open esplanade at your own pace and pass by the remains of residences, shrines, towers, tunnels, zigzagged limestone walls, and distinct trapezoidal doorways.

    It’s thought that the site’s construction lasted more than seven decades and required 20,000 men to set the foundations, hew the stones, transport materials, and complete the stonework. On your stroll, notice that the walls and buildings are made entirely without mortar. These enormous stones fit together so perfectly that not even a single blade of grass can fit between them—a testament to the Incan’s sophisticated masonry.

    In the afternoon you’ll return to the Tambo del Inka Resort in the Sacred Valley, where you’ll enjoy dinner and an overnight stay

    Day 2
    Lima/Cusco/Sacred Valley

    'Navel of the World’

  • Day 3
    Sacred Valley / Machu Picchu / Scared Valley

    ‘The Lost City of the Incas’

    After breakfast at the resort, you’re in for an unforgettable day. We’ll start off in Ollantaytambo, once the royal estate of Emperor Pachacuti. He conquered the region and built up the town that shares its name, featuring a formidable stone fortress that still towers on a massive cliff above the community. Constructed with rose-colored granite, this huge structure was once a thriving complex of baths, temples, and military barracks. The fortification here was the valley’s main defense against the rival Antis people. It was also the site of the Incan greatest victory against the Spanish during the Wars of Conquest,

    Then we’ll head to the nearby train station and board the deluxe Hiram Bingham train to Machu Picchu. Enjoy a savory brunch while you marvel at the views on the way to this magical location.

    At last, we arrive at spectacular Machu Picchu. Built around 1450 and abandoned during the time of the Spanish conquest, thick tangles of vines and trees shielded it from the prying eyes of the outside world for centuries. After being ‘found’ by American archeologist Hiram Bingham in 1911, ‘The Lost City of the Incas’ is now widely regarded as one of the ancient wonders of the world.

    Explore the city’s ruins and imagine what life must have been like when it was inhabited by priests, craftsmen and servants. Excavations at the site have revealed skeletons, artifacts, and woolen clothing. Now it’s your turn to analyze the precise Incan stonework. Even if we have a basic understanding of the site, the Incas left no written records behind about the city’s rise or fall. Thus, Machu Picchu remains one of the most mysterious archeological sites in the world.

    After spending an eventful day at these two sites, we’ll return to the Tambo del Inka Resort by train for a relaxing evening and an overnight stay.

    Day 3
    Sacred Valley / Machu Picchu / Scared Valley

    ‘The Lost City of the Incas’

  • Day 4
    Sacred Valley/Cusco/Lima/Callao

    Center of the Incan Empire

    After breakfast, we’ll explore the splendid Baroque-style Cusco Cathedral, built by the Spaniards in the mid-1500s on the foundation of an Incan palace. Many of the stones used to construct it were looted from the nearby Sacsayhuamán fortress. Next, we’ll visit Koricancha, where we’ll admire the Dominican Convent of Santo Domingo, built on the foundation of the Temple of the Sun, the most important temple in the Incan Empire. The curved masonry wall at the west end of the church, built entirely without mortar, is considered to be one of the greatest existing examples of Incan stonework.

    At lunchtime, we’ll eat at a local restaurant before our transfer to the airport for the flight to Lima. From Lima, we’ll head to the ship, docked in Callao, ready and waiting to begin the next part of your expedition. Once on board, you’ll check-in and complete an important safety drill. Then settle into your cabin and take a look around the ship. Later, you’ll enjoy have a welcome dinner, where you’ll meet the captain, the crew, and the Expedition Team. Together, we’ll raise a glass and toast to the adventures ahead! The day ends with a health and safety briefing from the Expedition Team. After, perhaps head over to the Explorer Lounge and Bar and meet your fellow shipmates.

    Day 4
    Sacred Valley/Cusco/Lima/Callao

    Center of the Incan Empire

  • Day 5
    Salaverry / Trujillo, Peru

    An archeologist’s dream

    Pummeled by the Pacific’s wind and waves, Salaverry can be a hard port to access. If we are able to land there, though, it will be a good starting point to explore Trujillo, Peru’s third-largest city, and the array of archeological sites scattered throughout the region.

    Trujillo sits in a fertile valley oasis irrigated by the Moche River. It boasts a colorful Baroque 17th-century cathedral, 10 colonial churches, and many Neoclassical mansions, not to mention one of the longest mosaic murals in the world at the local university. It’s more likely, however, that your focus will be further back on the past.

    The city of Chan Chan was created by the Chimú Empire, which appeared in the region around 900 A.D. The vast ruins of the complex, measuring almost 8 square miles, include the Tschudi temple-citadel and Huaca Esmeralda. On the other side of Trujillo are you’ll find the Mochican pyramids of the Sun and the Moon. These pre-date Chan Chan by a few hundred years! Huaca del Sol stands out as the largest adobe structure on the continent, while Huaca del Luna is a more detailed specimen, with many of its pastel frescos still visible.

    Day 5
    Salaverry / Trujillo, Peru

    An archeologist’s dream

  • Day 6
    At Sea

    At your leisure

    As we leave Peru behind and set sail for Ecuador, enjoy another day at your leisure aboard the ship. Take advantage of the many onboard facilities and join in on lectures as we prepare you for what’s to come.

    There’s no better place than the Wellness Center to fully relax during your downtime on board. Feel the knots in your muscles disappear during a massage or pamper yourself with a skin-scrubbing treatment. And if the warm weather hasn’t opened up your pores, a session in the sauna is sure to do the trick. You can also slip on your bathing suit and soak in one of the outdoor hot tubs or bask in a state of zen during a guided meditation class. Whatever you decide to do, there are plenty of ways to keep yourself entertained—and ready and revitalized for your next adventure!

    Day 6
    At Sea

    At your leisure

  • Day 7
    Puerto Bolivar (Machala), Ecuador

    Growing green gold

    Machala’s main claim to fame is Puerto Bolivar, an important Ecuadorian port where coffee, cocoa, shrimp, and bountiful bananas (which the locals call oro verde, or ‘green gold’) leave for export. As part of one of our optional excursions, you may have the opportunity to visit a local banana plantation, or try and spot hummingbirds, parakeets, and howler monkeys in Buenaventura Nature Reserve to the south. The nearby Puyango Petrified Forest has one of the largest collections of fossilized trees in the world, thought to be about 100 million years old—as old as the Andes Mountains themselves.

    Feast on fresh seafood at Puerto Bolivar at one of the harbor’s many restaurants and enjoy views of the natural mangrove swamps of Isla Jambeli. Machala has all the charm you’d expect from a small coastal city. Stroll through quaint plazas, admire unusual monuments dedicated to sorting fish and bananeros, and maybe even meet some friendly locals. The restaurants here are evolving and have started dabbling in the hip, modern cuisine for which Ecuador and Peru have increasingly become known.

    Day 7
    Puerto Bolivar (Machala), Ecuador

    Growing green gold

  • Day 8
    Isla de la Plata, Ecuador

    Ecuador’s other Galápagos

    Isla de la Plata is a part of Parque National Machalilla, Ecuador’s only coastal national park. The island sits a ways off the coast and is prone to large waves that can make landings a challenge. Its nickname of ‘Silver Island’ is thought to come from the belief that English seaman Francis Drake buried a treasure trove of silver here. It could also come from the copious bird guano reflected in the sunshine, giving the island a shiny, silvery look when seen from the mainland. Unfortunately, no treasure has ever been found on the island, which is just over two square miles in size.

    But what the island lacks in size or silver, it more than makes up for in the wide range of wildlife, even rivaling that of the Galápagos Islands. If we are able to land here successfully, keen birdwatchers take note! Have your binoculars at the ready to spot some of the 32 species of birds found here, including the famous blue-footed boobies, nesting waved albatross, pelicans, gannets, and frigate birds. The wildlife in the island’s waters are equally diverse. Keep an eye out for whales, manta rays, green turtles, and dolphins.

    Day 8
    Isla de la Plata, Ecuador

    Ecuador’s other Galápagos

  • Day 9
    Manta, Ecuador

    Sea, sand, surf, and… tuna?

    Manta is a bustling and prosperous port city with high-rise buildings, resort hotels, and several casinos. It is well-known for its long stretches of beach whose blessed wind and waves draw surfers, body-boarders, and kitesurfers from across the globe. You can mingle with casual beachgoers at the shops, restaurants, and bars of Malencón Escénico at Playa el Murcielago. You can also head to San Lorenzo for surfer-sweet swells or go to Playa Bonita at Santa Marianita to watch kitesurfers take off from the sea into the sky.

    Aside from tourism, the city’s tuna fishing and canning industry is a successful and key industry here. As is typical for a coastal city, seafood is the specialty on the menu at most restaurants in the area. Try succulent wild-caught shrimp, black clams, octopus, red snappers, and much more. Make a point to try a bowl of the local encebollado broth made with fresh tuna, the pride of Manta. The Museo Municipal Etnografico Cancebi showcases Ecuadorian art and artifacts from the local pre-Columbian civilization, including ancient fishing tools. You may also have the opportunity to visit the nearby town of Montecristi, famous for handicrafts, and where traditional Panamanian straw hats were first created and still hand woven to this day.

    Day 9
    Manta, Ecuador

    Sea, sand, surf, and… tuna?

  • Day 10
    At Sea

    Serenity at sea

    A day at sea means the opportunity to attend interesting lectures, learn basic expedition photography, try your hand at an art workshop, and enjoy the fresh sea air out on deck as you watch for wildlife. You can also use microscopes in the Science Center to analyze samples taken during the cruise. As we cross the Equator, it’s the tradition of Norwegian sailors to hold a ceremony to seek King Neptune’s blessing. If we’re in luck, he may even make an appearance.

    By this stage of your journey, you can now regard your fellow explorers as friends, after finding so much in common in your interests and passion for nature. Chat with them over a snack at the bistro-style Fredheim restaurant, and share your favorite stories from the expedition so far. The Explorer Bar is also open for drinks—you might even catch the crew and Expedition Team here in the evening for some friendly banter. As night falls, there is nothing as romantic as stargazing on deck with the one you love.

    Day 10
    At Sea

    Serenity at sea

  • Day 11
    Cebaco Island, Panama

    Beaches off the beaten track

    Even though Cebaco is Panama’s third-largest island, much of it is uninhabited, aside from the small village of El Jobo in the north. Cebaco can only be accessed by sea, but no public ferries come here. This remoteness keeps this all-but-forgotten place quiet and its island life traditional, as it is untainted by development and mass tourism.

    Each turn reveals miles of pristine beaches, like the fine white sands and the rows of coconut trees of Playa Grande. There are multiple hiking trails that weave through the lush rainforest, ideal for stopping and enjoying the island’s peace and to look for wildlife. The island’s location on the Gulf of Montijo is part of a nationally protected marine area. The luscious turquoise waters at La Pita beach and Caelata Cayman harbor exceptional coral reefs and colorful fish to see while snorkeling.

    Day 11
    Cebaco Island, Panama

    Beaches off the beaten track

  • Day 12
    Golfito, Costa Rica

    Bananas to Bargains

    The laid-back town of Golfito is sheltered in the gorgeous Golfito Bay, which lies within the larger Golfo Dulce. Enjoy views from the seaside marinas or, better yet, follow the scenic hiking trails up the hill and into the wildlife refuge, ending in at Piedras Blancas National Park. Your exploration of the lush rainforest will bring you up close with picturesque waterfalls. Keep an eye out for toucans, macaws, blue morpho butterflies, anteaters, sloths, mantled howler monkeys, and more. The calm waters around the bay also make it ideal for touring the local mangroves and for joining an optional kayaking excursion to the isolated beaches.

    Once a prime region for banana exports, Golfito has since switched its economy to palm oil plantations and sport fishing. Anglers of all ages stay at boutique resorts and chic eco-lodges around Golfito, and set off on one of the many boats moored there in hopes of catching the iconic Pacific sailfish. Are you a bargain hunter? Check out the town’s duty-free center, which regularly attracts both visitors and locals alike.

    Day 12
    Golfito, Costa Rica

    Bananas to Bargains

  • Day 13
    Quepos, Costa Rica

    A slice of paradise in Costa Rica

    You’ll find that the town of Quepos and its surroundings come packed with plenty of things to see and do. The many boats in the gorgeous Marina Pez Vela serve the big-game fishing industry for which Quepos is known. There are six blocks of restaurants, galleries, and shops around the central plaza, and an ample selection of water sports  along the mile-long Playa Espadilla.

    That said, the main attraction of Quepos is not the town itself, but rather its proximity to Manuel Antonio National Park. This is one of the most popular national parks in Costa Rica, and appears on Forbes’ list of top 12 most beautiful national parks in the world. In this park, you can catch impressive views of mountains, mangroves, lagoons, beaches, and tropical forest. With 350 birds species and 109 species of mammals, there’s a lot to keep an eye out for! By following the breathtaking Perezoso trail, you might spot scarlet macaws, toucans, hawks, four species of monkey, sloths, iguanas, and armadillos.

    Day 13
    Quepos, Costa Rica

    A slice of paradise in Costa Rica

  • Day 14
    Puntarenas, Costa Rica

    End of your exotic expedition

    Estimated time of arrival is 6:00 AM

    Your expedition will come to its glorious end in Puntarenas, a city on a needle-thin strip of land on the Pacific coast of Costa Rica. City folks from San José often try to slip away to Puntarenas for the day to bask in the relaxed coastal life and fresh ocean air. While it is still an active fishing port, Puntarenas is mainly a starting point for people heading elsewhere in the region, like to the white-sand beaches of Nicoya Peninsula or the waterfall-rich Tortuga Island.

    Depending on how much time you have after we disembark, before you catch your return flight or head to the Post-Program, we suggest trying to fit in taking a pleasant stroll along the palm-tree lined Paseo de los Turistas. You’ll also find restaurants, food stalls, and vendors for any last-minute souvenir shopping. If you feel the need to indulge your sweet tooth, grab a batido (a fruit smoothie) and churchills, the official snack of Puntarenas, which is a combination of fruit, shaved ice, syrup, and ice cream. What’s with that name? It comes from the fact that the local man who invented this concoction was generally believed to be the spitting image of the famous British prime minister.

    Before returning home, why not make the most of your trip and sign up for a Post-Program to the magnificent Arenal Volcano area, where you’ll join activities to see more of Costa Rica’s beautiful flora and fauna. Or join a jungle boat tour (lunch included), followed by a night in the capital city of San José.

    Day 14
    Puntarenas, Costa Rica

    End of your exotic expedition

Departures

2022

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April:
7.

Available Promotions on This Itinerary:

  • 2022 Season: Save up to $ 1,418

    Get the whole family together on one of our expedition cruises! Whether you’re gazing at a fleet of frigate birds in the Galápagos; or watching a waddle of penguins… well, waddle, past you on the Antarctic Peninsula, this is one gift that definitely won’t be returned.
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  • Book with confidence

    Our popular Book with Confidence policy is back, giving you the peace of mind you want for your next adventure exploring the world with us.
    The benefits of the policy apply to any new bookings made between 25 November 2021 and 31 March 2022, for expedition cruises departing on or before 30 September 2022.
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What's Included

Included in Your Expedition

Expedition to Machu Picchu before the cruise

  • One night in Lima and two nights at Hotel Tambo del Inka, including breakfast
  • 3-course set lunch and dinner on Days 2 and 3, and a packed lunch on Day 4
  • Economy flight from Lima to Cusco, and Cusco to Lima
  • All transfers and train rides as described in the itinerary, including an English-speaking guide
  • Entrance fee as listed in the itinerary

Expedition Cruise

  • Expedition cruise in a cabin of your choice
  • Breakfast, lunch, and dinner, including beverages (house beer and wine, sodas, and mineral water) in restaurants Aune and Fredheim
  • Fine-dining À la carte restaurant Lindstrøm is included for suite guests
  • Complimentary tea and coffee
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi on board. Be aware that we sail in remote areas with limited connection. Streaming is not supported.
  • Complimentary reusable water bottle to fill at onboard water refill stations
  • English-speaking Expedition Team who organize and guide activities, both on board and ashore
  • Range of included activities

Onboard activities

  • Experts from the Expedition Team present detailed lectures on a variety of topics
  • Use the ship’s Science Center, which features an extensive library and advanced biological and geological microscopes
  • The Citizen Science program allows guests to contribute to current scientific research projects
  • The onboard professional photographer will give tips and tricks for taking the best landscape and wildlife photos
  • The ship has hot tubs, an infinity pool, a sauna, an outdoor and indoor gym, and an outdoor running track
  • Participate in informal gatherings with the crew, such as daily recaps and the next day’s preparations

Landing activities

  • Escorted landings with small boats (RIBs)
  • Loan of boots, trekking poles, and all equipment needed for the activities
  • Complimentary wind- and water-resistant expedition jacket
  • Expedition photographers will help configure your camera settings before landings

Not Included In Your Expedition

  • International flights
  • Travel protection
  • Baggage handling
  • Optional shore excursions with our local partners
  • Optional small-group activities with our Expedition Team
  • Optional treatments in the onboard wellness and spa area

Notes

  • All planned activities are subject to weather conditions
  • Excursions and activities are subject to change
  • Please ensure you can meet all entry and boarding requirements
  • No gratuities are expected
MS Roald Amundsen
Science Center
Photo: Agurtxane Concellon
A small boat in a large body of water
Your Ship

MS Roald Amundsen

Year built 2019
Shipyard Kleven Yards
Passenger capacity 528 (500 in Antarctica)
Gross tonnage 20 889 T
Length 140 m
Beam 23,6 m
Speed 15 knots
MS Roald Amundsen

In 2019, Hurtigruten added a brand new ship to its fleet: the MS Roald Amundsen. The state of the art vessel features new and environmentally sustainable hybrid technology that will reduce fuel consumption and show the world that hybrid propulsion on large ships is possible.

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Aune Restaurant, MS Roald Amundsen
Photo: Espen Mills
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