Peru is as complex as its most intricate and exquisite weavings. Festivals mark ancient rites, the urban vanguard fuels innovation and nature bestows splendid diversity. From downtown Lima to smack-dab in the middle of nowhere, this vast country is a paradise for the photographer and traveller. Meet the locals, Explore the mountains, Visit unique locations without the presence of huge crowds. Learn from international photographers. Our Photo Tours in Peru includes : Landscape, portraits, street, documental and astro-photography. Meet isolated Quechua and Indigenous communities. If you are not a photographer don’t worry! Join us for the ride, live the real Peru and we will tag along to photograph your journey and preserve your memories for life!
Day 1 – 28th May : Lima – Cusco
Arrival in Cusco airport, This first day will be a relaxed one as you may need time to rest from the trip, to get used to the jetlag, and to acclimatize slowly (Cusco is at 3,400 meters high). According to the time of arrival, we can go to the center to eat something and have a look around this wonderful colonial city for some street photography. Transfer from the airport to your hotel in Cusco
Hotel: Monasterio San Pedro
Day 2 – 29th May : Cusco City Tour
Short visit of the Cathedral, The Temple of the Sun in Qoriqancha and the Main Square. Then we go with our private transport to the archeological sites that are around the City, such as Saccsahuaman, Qenqo, Tambo Machay and Puca Pucara.The afternoon and night will be dedicated to street and people photography, as well as to discover more the city!
Hotel : Monasterio San Pedro-B
Day 3 – 30th May : Cusco – Maras – Ollantaytambo – Maranura
Early start this morning to enjoy the best light on our way to Maras to see the salt pans. We’ll also make a few stops on the road if it’s worth taking photos. Then we’ll stop at Ollantaytambo to visit an incredible archeological site! Lunch in this pretty town. Then, we continue to an incredible mountain pass, the “Abra Malaga” to enjoy stunning views on the mountain road, glaciers and 6,000 meters peaks. From this pass, at 4300m, we go down until the jungle at 1,200m. The environmental change is brutal! We’ll do one part of this descent by bike to get some good adrenaline! We’ll arrive in Maranura and spend the night in a simple but cosy hostel in this little town…
Hostel Don Pepe-BD
Day 4 – 31st May : Maranura – Santa Teresa – Aguas Calientes
This morning, we’ll go for a little hike in the forest to see beautiful waterfalls. Then we’ll take our transport and go to Santa teresa on an impressive dirt road in a Canyon! We’ll rest in natural hot springs before starting a three hour hike following the railway to reach Aguas Calientes, at the foot of Machu Picchu
Hotel Inka Tower-B
Day 5 – 1st June : Machu Picchu – Cusco
One of the highlights of this trip, for sure! Early in the morning, we take a bus to enjoy the best light on the ancient city of Machu Picchu. There is one particular viewpoint where we’ll go first. Then we’ll take the time to hike to the Incan Bridge and to the Sun Gate (Inti Punku) before our guided visit of the ruins. Back in Aguas Calientes, we’ll take the train to Ollantaytambo and then a private transport to Cusco where we’ll spend the night.
Hotel Monasterio San Pedro-B
Day 6 – 2nd June : Cusco – Santa Lucia – Waqra Pukara (2-day trek)
Early start this morning since we must drive three and a half hours on a beautiful road again to reach the small and remote village of Santa Lucia, from where we will start our hike. We’ll have to walk between two and three hours on a relatively flat path, except at the very end, to reach Waqra Pukara, a pre-incan fortress built on top of the impressive Apurimac Canyon. It is really not known yet so very few tourists come here. And there are amazing opportunities to get stunning images of this archeological site and the canyon with the sunset! The camping site itself is also really beautiful…
Camping in tents-BLD
Day 7- 3rd June : Waqra Pukara – Huayki – Rainbow Mountain – Cusco
For the motivated ones, we can wake up early to photograph the sunrise. Then we’ll have to hike two to three hours mostly going down. Our transport will wait for us in the village of Huayki. Then we will have to drive another 3 hours until the foot of the Rainbow Mountain. The idea is to arrive in the afternoon to avoid the crowd and be alone in this incredible environment! We’ll also enjoy the sunset either on the Rainbow Mountain, or in the Red Valley. We may go down with our headlamp to reach the car. We’ll probably arrive late in Cusco but we’ll rest on the next day.
Hotel Monasterio San Pedro-BL
Day 8-4th June : Cuzco
Free photography day today to rest and keep acclimatizing before sleeping higher in the Andes.
Hotel Monasterio San Pedro-BL
Day 9- 5th June : Cusco – Tinki – Upis Alto (Ausangate trek in 3 days)
No need to leave too early this morning as we’ll have “only” 4 hours of hiking today. So we first take our transport which brings us to Tinki, a little town at the foot of the Ausangate mountain, the highest and most sacred one in the region. The hike is not too difficult as the ascent is progressive. Tonight, we’ll sleep at Upis Alto, at 4400 meters high. We’ll have many photographic opportunities in terms of landscapes, people and animals.
Night in a basic shelter-BLD
Day 10- 6th June : Upis Alto – Pacchanta
Today is the hardest trekking day of this trip, but probably the most beautiful one! The nature is absolutely stunning. We’ll see lots of turquoise lagoons at the foot of the glaciers, with 6,000 meters peaks all around, and local Quechua people living mostly from their alpacas. We’ll first have a 3 hour hike to several lagoons where we’ll stop for lunch (and photography of course). Then we’ll keep going up to a 4,850 meters pass, to enjoy the views from the other side of the valley, and we’ll push a little bit higher on a steep but relatively short ascent, until 4950m, to enjoy the best panorama of the region (4 more hours). At the end of the day, we’ll be rewarded with beautiful natural hot springs in the village of Pacchanta!
Night in a basic shelter-BLD
Day 11- 7th June : Pacchanta – Tinki – Qoyllur Rit’i Festival
We’ll take a taxi this morning to come back to our initial point, Tinki village. From there, we will take another taxi to get to Mahuayani, the beginning of the Qoyllur Rit’i Festival. It’s considered as the most important catholic pilgrimage in the entire Andes! Every year, about 100,000 people come up here to pray the “Lord of Qoyllur Rit’i”, at 4,700 meters above the sea level. Thousands and dancers and musicians perform and celebrate Catholic, incan and other religious beliefs during more than a week, but 3 or 4 days are really important and full of people. This is the best cultural experience one can get from a trip in Peru! And photographically speaking… The best as well! People are in a happy mood and nobody minds being photographed! But before getting there, we’ll have to hike up for three hours. Tonight, we will spend the night in a tent at 4,700 meters high!
Night in a tent-BLD
Day 12 – 8th June: Qoyllur Rit’i Festival
This day will be entirely dedicated to the festival. We’ll take advantage of the beautiful light in the morning, during sunset and even at night, to get the best out of this event. There will be many opportunities to take great photos of people in their best traditional costumes… There are also many mountains to climb for those more interested in landscape photography, as the environment around the festival is wonderful!
Night in a tent-BLD
Day 13 – 9th June : Qoyllur Rit’i Festival – Cusco
Last day at the festival. It will be time to come back to Cusco. Two hours going down to Mahuayani where our transport will wait for us. Last photo opportunities on the way down too… End of this incredible “off the beaten path” trip in Peru with thousands of photos to edit at home…
Night Monasterio San Pedro-BLD
You are going to travel in remote areas where sometimes the arrangement/logistic can slightly change due to weather condition