Welcome to Machu Picchu and Perú!
Peru is one of the most unique countries in the world. Aside from being home to 30 of the world’s 32 distinct climates, it boasts an extremely rich cultural heritage that has been passed down from communities and civilizations dating to long before the famous Inca Empire.
We take you to Machu Picchu--one of the Seven New Wonders of the World, the famous Rainbow Mountain, and all around Cusco, the ancient capital of the Inca Empire.
2022: 6 days & 5 nights
2023: 7 days & 6 nights
Start: Please be ready at Alejandro Velasco Astete International Airport (CUZ) at 12:00 PM
The earlier you arrive on Day 1, the more time you will have to explore Cusco. If you arrive after 12:00 pm we will make arrangements to pick you up after we receive your flight information.
Finish: Trip ends at Alejandro Velasco Astete International Airport (CUZ) at 9:00 AM
We will arrange several airport drop-offs based on your flight times.
Airfare booking details will be sent after registration-–please wait to book your flight until you receive further instructions.
Travelers are responsible for international airfare to and from Peru.
If you want to immerse yourself in some of Peru's most spectacular sights while minimizing time off from work, this trip is for you!
Through this experience you will visit Machu Picchu from the comfort of a public train and bus. You'll also spend time exploring the old capital of the Incan empire--Cusco.
Cusco, Machu Picchu, & the Rainbow Mountains are located at high altitudes. If you've struggled with altitude sickness in the past, this trip may be challenging.
-Age requirement: 21+
-Group size: 15 max, average 12
-Physical rating: High physical activity. This trip is for those who enjoy being physically challenged and reaping the rewards. It includes moderate to intense physical activities and participants should expect to be active 6-8 hours most days. Participants should have an active lifestyle, and may want to consider training for high altitude.
Travel connects us. Community keeps us connected.
Before your trip you'll have the opportunity to join a custom WhatsApp Group and connect with others members of your group. Many travelers meet in the airport, or for pre-trip drinks if they are from the same city. Others coordinate plans to stay in a country after their trip.
During your adventure, our Trip Leaders do their best to foster an open, supportive environment, where people feel safe to truly be themselves.
After your trip, you'll be an official U30X Alumni, and part of our larger online Travel Community where you'll have access to our network of thousands of past travelers. We are constantly hosting meetups that range from simple happy hours, to hikes, to outdoor movie nights.
More than 70% of our travelers come solo, but they all leave with friends.
Travel can be unpredictable. Our goal is to provide you with the most rewarding experience.
While it is our intention to adhere to the itinerary, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into it and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable to make alterations.
Additionally, any travel times listed are approximations only and subject to vary due to local circumstances.
Breakfasts will be served at your hotel. Dinners are enjoyed in local restaurants and your hotel.
Sample Breakfast Menu:
Sample Lunch Menu:
Sample Dinner Menu:
We do our best to accommodate dietary restrictions. Many meals can be modified for special requests and food allergies.
You will be traveling by private and public ground transportation throughout your trip.
You will be staying in shared boutique hotel rooms for the duration of your trip.
Laundry is available at some hotels for an additional fee. Ask your Trip Leader for details.
Accommodations may vary but will be the same quality.
Solo travelers are paired with someone of the same gender.
Private room options are available upon request subject to hotel availability for an extra charge.
Travel insurance is mandatory in order to participate in any of our trips.
When selecting a travel insurance policy please bear in mind that all travelers must have medical coverage and that we require a minimum coverage of $200,000 USD for repatriation and emergency rescue. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. Please ensure that all the activities you plan on participating in are covered by your travel insurance.
We recommend using either Wanderwell or World Nomads to purchase your policy. The Wanderwell “Preferred Plan” or the World Nomads “Explorer Plan” will cover all included activities on U30X trips. Wanderwell donates at least one percent of your insurance purchase to Explore Austin, a sustainable youth outdoor education program, via 1% for the Planet, selected by Under30Experiences.
If you have travel insurance with your credit card we require proof of purchase of the trip in the form of a receipt or credit card statement on a credit card in your name. Contact your bank for details of their participating insurer, the level of coverage, and emergency contact telephone number.
Give us at least 30 days notice and you can switch your trip for free, or we'll hold your Experience Credits for future use.
If you have an emergency cancellation that is less than 30 days before your trip, please refer to your travel insurance company as they may cover you for some expenses. We are not able to transfer trips or hold experience credits within 30 days of the trip because we have already secured reservations on your behalf.
All Under30Experiences trips are accompanied by experienced Trip Leaders.
The goal of the Trip Leader is to facilitate an awesome experience and help our travelers have the best trip possible. They will provide information on the places you are traveling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends.
You can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the countries visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects.
We recommend using a travel backpack for your convenience, or a medium-sized suitcase if you prefer. A daypack is also essential for carrying everyday items. Space is limited on transportation, so there is a limit of one main piece of luggage per person. You will be responsible for carrying your own luggage.
Below includes our staff picks of the best items on the market that we travel with! All products selected are 3 ounces or less to comply with TSA carry-on size and organically inspired when possible.
Some links on this page are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you Under30Experiences will earn a small commission if you make a purchase.
Guidelines for U.S. Passport Holders
Make sure you have an updated passport with you. Your passport must be valid for at least 6 months beyond the last date of your trip. Please consult the U.S. Department of State with any more questions.
Make sure there is no damage to your passport. Conditions that may constitute damage requiring you to replace your passport include water damage, a significant tear, unofficial markings on the data page, missing or torn out visa pages, a hole punch, or other injuries.
COVID vaccination card is required for entry into Machu Picchu. Check out our Travel Alerts Page for up-to-date COVID requirements.
The tap water in Peru is not safe to drink. Please bring a reusable water bottle to refill from filtered water stations and join us in our efforts to be environmentally friendly and keep Peru beautiful.
Travelers are responsible for purchasing and transporting their own water throughout the day while in Peru.
The restaurants we take you to have safe food, but when you are on your own please be careful with salads and fruits. It’s impossible to know if they used water from the tap to wash it.
Altitude sickness, or Acute Countain Sickness (AMS) is common at altitudes above 8,000 ft (2,400m) above sea level. Cusco is 11,150 ft (3,400m) above sea level, and the highest we go on this trip is 17,060 ft (5,200m) at Rainbow Mountain. We recommend you to stay hydrated, and take time to acclimate, but if you’re concerned, consult your doctor about preventative medicine options.
Our suggested travel insurance vendor is World Nomads and has a minimum of $200,000 USD coverage.
Please consult with your doctor before traveling regarding physical activity and vaccinations.
No inoculations are required to enter Peru from the United States but the Center for Disease Control suggests vaccinating for Hepatitis A and Typhoid. Required vaccines should go through CDC, recommended vaccines should be through your doctor.
Mosquito borne viruses exist in most of South America. Please cover exposed skin and use mosquito repellent.
Please be aware that quite often we are in remote areas and away from medical facilities. For legal reasons our Trip Leaders are prohibited from administering any type of drug including over the counter pain relievers, but can suggest local pharmacies.
We suggest bringing $300 USD in cash to be used at establishments that do not accept credit cards.
This is not a total cash amount that you should expect to spend on your trip. Please consider your own spending habits for additional expenses such as snacks, souvenirs, and optional activities.
The official currency in Peru is the Peruvian Sol (PEN).
We recommend exchanging from USD to PEN at your local bank before arriving in Peru to make sure you have some local currency in case you have issues with your card when you arrive.
Although many places will accept USD we recommend exchanging into Peruvian Soles (PEN) for a better exchange rate.
In Peru, an 18% charge is added on to almost every meal.
Tipping is customary if you’re satisfied with your meal. 10% is the norm.
Tipping is also customary for the porters, chefs, and crew that accompany you on the Inca Trail.
Remember to call your bank and credit card company and let them know you'll be traveling overseas.
For an up-to-date exchange rate, download the XE Currency Exchange App.
Please be advised that US Dollar notes that are slightly torn, heavily marked, or faded may be difficult to exchange. It is best to bring notes in fairly good condition, in denominations lower than $100.
Always carry a copy of your travel insurance, health insurance and passport with you. A photo of these items on your phone is also a good backup.
Keep your passport and any valuables locked in the safe at the hotel.
Don’t leave valuables unattended.
Leave flashy jewelry at home.
US Citizens please consider registering with US State Department's “SMART Traveler Program” who can contact your family in case of emergency.
Uber works in Lima and Cusco and is the safest way to call a taxi without having to negotiate the price. If you have extra time in Peru before or after our trip, we recommend using Uber to get around.
Although Cusco is generally safe during the day, there can be risks to wandering around any town at night. We recommend staying in small groups when possible.
Make sure you have the address of your hotel in the event that you're separated from your Trip Leader.
The weather in Peru is tropical and humid for the majority of the country during most of the year. Average temperatures are in the mid to upper 80’s Fahrenheit.
Machu Picchu itself is located in the cloud forest. Don’t be surprised to encounter clouds and maybe even some rain.
Dry season months of April-September
Peruvians are some of the kindest people in South America. One kiss on the cheek or a good hug is a common greeting.
Peruvians love to eat ceviche, chicharron (deep-fried pork), chifa (Peruvian-Chinese food), anticuchos (Beef heart skewers), and Guinea pig is a delicacy for the Andes area.
Peruvians love to drink Inca Kola (Peruvian soft drink), beer, chicha, and pisco sours.
Altitude sickness is common for travelers coming to Peru, especially Cusco. Coca Tea, rehydration, and good acclimatization always helps. Symptoms can be similar to those of a bad hangover.
Coca leaves are legal in Peru and you can find coca crackers, toffees and sweets, but do not attempt to take them out of the country.
Peruvians love salsa, cumbia and reggaeton and when they are listening to music as a family they opt for traditional music like Huaynos and Huaylas.
Due to American influence in South America, tipping is customary in several countries. It is not mandatory but people who are involved in the logistics of the trips will expect a tip.
Locals say here: “Feel free to tip someone if you feel that the service satisfies you.”
By the way, the word for “tip” in Spanish is propina, something that most foreign tourists will hear at some point during their trip to Peru.
Peru Tipping: Tours and Transport
Taxi Drivers – You never need to tip taxi drivers in Peru. The drivers don’t expect it, and they are probably overcharging you anyway. If a taxi driver is extremely friendly and points out various landmarks along the way then there’s no harm saying thanks with a small tip.
Tour Guides and Porters – As an average guideline we can suggest $5 to $10 (15 to 30 soles approximately) per day for tour guides and between $3 to $5 (9 to 15 soles) per day for porters, drivers, cooks and the like. Again, the quality of service determines the exact amount. If you are on a luxury tour, then the tip amount will generally be at the upper end of the scale (and vice versa). It’s sometimes a good idea to tip collectively as a tour group. Pooling your money will give you a better idea of the overall amount that each guide, porter etc will receive – and will help you avoid excessive tipping.
Private Hire Drivers – You can consider tipping a private driver $2 to $5 per day. A lot depends on the type of trip, the amount of driving required, and how much extra help you receive. You might end up buying your driver lunch, snacks and drinks throughout the day, but it’s still nice to tip for good service at the end of the trip.
While your Trip Leader will assist you with optional activities available, please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of the Under30Experiences itinerary. We offer no guarantees on the safety or standard of the activity.
Respect the people around you and the environment in which you’re traveling. This includes, but is not limited to fellow travelers, Trip Leaders, the local community, nature, wildlife, and yourself.
Do your best to keep yourself and fellow travelers out of harm’s way.
It’s important to obey local laws and customs while on our trips. This includes, but is not limited to wearing appropriate clothing while visiting certain communities, refraining from taking photos of people without asking, avoiding the use of illegal drugs, having weapons, and soliciting prostitution. If you’re not sure about something, take time to educate yourself, or ask.
Travel involves contact with new cultures. When confronted with a different way of living than you’re used to, do your best to understand that neither way is better or worse. They’re simply different ways of life.
Know your limits! This applies to physical ability, emotional space, social situations, and alcohol consumption. If you can’t participate in something, be upfront about it. If you need a break from people, take it. Stop drinking before you get too drunk.
Trip Leaders are working in the travelers’ best interest. If they say something or ask you not to do something it’s not because they’re tyrants, but because they want you to have a good time!
Lying or withholding information about any physical or mental condition that might affect your ability to participate in any of the activities may be grounds for removal from your trip with no refund.
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