The best part about booking our trip with this Peru tour operator was that they suggested the trip we didn't know we wanted to take. My boyfriend & I were finishing up an intense project at work (we work together) and had vacation time coming up. We knew we wanted to go to Peru for about two weeks and hike the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. We were still working hard and didn't have the time to research and plan a trip and make all the reservations ourselves. The tour operator suggested a couple of nights in the rainforest at a lodge and two free days in Cuzco. This was perfect and I have to say that both of us enjoyed the rainforest even more then we thought we would. Communication with the company was prompt and April, the girl who booked our trip was very helpful when I had questions about the booking or Peru.
Above all I would say that the thing I really really cannot recommend enough is the company that our tour operator booked our rainforest lodge and Inca Trail hike with: InkaNatura. InkaNatura is a very eco-minded company; they're a non-profit that uses money gained in eco-tourism to buy rainforest land to preserve. Our groups were small and our guides extremely knowledgeable, friendly, and enthusiastic. When we hiked the Inca Trail many of the other groups porters were loaded down with more weight then is allowed, had inadequate shoes, and very inadequate backpacks. Our porters genuinely seemed happy to be along on the hike with us and I absolutely cannot tell you how well they took care of us. I've never had such a luxurious camping experience in my life!
Traveling around Peru means that you have take a couple of flights to get from Lima, to Cuzco, to Puerto Maldonaro and back again. Having a driver ready and waiting to meet us at the airport was something I always thought was an unnecessary luxury before. However it really made things so much easier when you're in a country that you don't know much about and don't speak Spanish. Our drivers were friendly and incredibly prompt- they were always there early and waiting for us.
Looking down at Machu Picchu from the top of the sun gate after hiking for four days. The friends we met. The food we ate. Seeing rare giant otters. It was a wonderful, memorable vacation that I'll remember for the rest of my life.
We booked our own international flights this time around and had the travel agency book the domestic flights in Peru. I would definitely book all our own flights next time- I feel like the travel agency booked the flights a couple of days after we had confirmed the trip and paid and I think if we had booked them promptly ourselves we could have avoided some of the dreaded fluctuating flight fees.
I also would probably have spent less time in Lima- I didn't really care much for the city. We had two good dinners, but didn't have enough time to really go see anything because it was more of an in-between destination between the rest of Peru and our flights to and from Los Angeles.
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