Last Modified: 19 Mar 2013
Peru Family - Spirit of the Incas
Trip code: FPB
Validity: 01 Oct 2012 to 31 Dec 2014
Gaze up at Peru’s dazzling peaks and picturesque valleys to understand why the Andean mountains were sacred for the Incas. This well-paced holiday combines time in the fascinating historic cities of Lima and Cusco with time exploring some of Peru’s most amazing settings. Children will love the strange sensation on walking across islands made entirely from reeds. Enjoy a memorable train journey through the heart of the sacred valley to Machu Picchu and breathe in the magical spirit of the Incas.
This trip is operated by our trusted local partners, The Adventure Company.
Table of Contents
With colonial charm, ancient Inca history and llamas around every corner, Peru is a destination with a difference. Explore the Andes one day, then hike the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu or dive into the Amazon the next. Peru has rewards to bestow on every type of traveller.
- Original trips are classic Intrepid adventures. With a mix of included activities and free time, they offer plenty of opportunities to explore at your own pace and take part in activities that really get beneath the skin of a destination. While the occasional meal may be included, you'll have the freedom to seek out your own culinary adventures. Accommodation is generally budget or tourist class (2-3 star), but you're as likely to find yourself as a guest of a local family as staying in a hotel or camping. Transport will vary as well. Depending on the destination and the itinerary you could find yourself travelling on anything from a camel to a train or a private safari vehicle. It's all part of the adventure! Original travellers have a desire to make the most of their travel time and really get to know a place, its people and cultures.
Days 1-2 Lima
Your trip starts in Lima. You will receive full details of exactly where to meet your Group Leader on the Joining Instructions which will be sent to you 2-3 weeks before your trip starts. For information on when the trip ends please refer to the itinerary as described below.
Hotel Castellana or Leon de Oro (2 nts)
Days 3-4 Lake Titicaca
This morning you will transfer to the airport for your flight to Juliaca, the gateway for Lake Titicaca. When you land, you meet up with your tour leader before taking a relatively short drive to Puno on the shores of Lake Titicaca at 3800m. At this altitude the sun is very hot in the daytime but temperatures at night can drop below freezing in the winter months of June, July and August. The rest of the day has been left free to allow you the chance to take things easy. This is to help your body acclimatise as much as possible. For those that want there are a number of optional activities (additional charge) that you may like to do in the afternoon such as visit the Yavari iron ship, built in Scotland at the turn of the 19th Century, and carried in pieces to Lake Titicaca from the Pacific shores of Chile to be reassembled on the lake.
The following day you take a boat to the floating reed islands of the Uros Indians and the island of Taquile. The life of the Uros is based on the tortora reed which grows in the lake and is used to construct their houses and boats, and can still be viewed like this today. It is said that the Uros began their floating existence by constructing the islands to isolate themselves from the belligerent Colla and Inca tribes, and this unique existence continues like this to this day. On reaching the islands it's clear that they are no longer as secluded as they once were, but they are still a unique sight. Continuing into the lake you arrive at Taquile Island covered in pre-Inca farming terraces and small villages. Life here has not changed in centuries - men dressed in 15th century attire sit in groups continually knitting intricate hats and belts, people toil in the fields using archaic, yet effective techniques and the views out across the lake to the snow-capped mountains on the horizon are stunning.
- Lake Titicaca & Uros boat trip
Conde de Lemos (2 nts)
Days 5-7 Cuzco
A long (7 hour) but classic journey across the expansive 'altiplano' offers panoramic vistas of this huge, high plateau dotted with llama, alpaca and the adobe dwellings of lonely herders. Your route takes you over the La Raya pass (4321m) to Racchi, site of the Inca Viracocha temple. The temple was one of the largest roofed structures built by the Inca, and Racchi remains an important centre for folklore and tradition, hosting an annual folklore festival in mid-June. Continuing your journey the scenery changes as you enter the lower fertile valleys still worked by beasts or groups of industrious villagers - their timeless agricultural methods prove the value of the knowledge of long ago. On arrival in Cuzco you check into your hotel and enjoy a first evening in this fascinating city.
The imperial capital was laid out in the rough shape of a puma. Its orderly streets bear witness to the extraordinary skill of Inca stone-masons - many are still lined with precisely interlocked stonework which serves as the foundation for later buildings from the colonial era, creating an atmospheric pastiche of contrasting architectural styles. On the next two days you are free to explore the inner city on foot or visit the impressive Inca ruins of Sacsayhuaman just outside the city. This fortress of giant carved stones, some of which weigh over 300 tonnes, fit together with a watchmaker's precision - with no need for mortar to bind them. There are two days free to soak up the historic atmosphere, visit some of the museums, the famous market or wander through the artists' district of San Blas. If you prefer to book optional excursions (additional charge), you can arrange in advance or locally through the group leader. A list can be found below, although more may be available at the time of travel.
The Cuzco region truly is the heart and soul of Peru. The city itself is the continent's oldest continuously inhabited city and was the home of the Incas for two centuries before the Spanish built their first capital here. Today Cuzco is a fascinating combination of both cultures. Inca-built walls line the central streets and many of the elegant colonial buildings are built on or around Inca foundations. This is a city steeped in history, tradition and legend and is a perfect base for explorations into the Inca world or to enjoy a range of outdoor activities.
Take the time to acclimatise to the city's 3,450 m (11,150 ft) altitude and explore the many Baroque churches and ancient temples that dot the city.
- Sacred Valley Mountain Biking, Cuzco - USD35.00
- Urubamba River Rafting, Urubamba - USD30.00
Hotel Suenos del Inka or Tupac Yupanqui (3 nts)
Day 8 Machu Picchu
Early this morning you transfer to Ollanta station to board the train for the spectacular ride to Aguas Calientes - the jumping off point for the stunning 'lost city' of Machu Picchu - the most dramatic and enchanting of Inca
citadels, constructed from white granite in an extravagantly-terraced saddle between two towering peaks. No description of this mythical place can do it justice. It was rediscovered, covered in forest in 1911 by the American explorer, Hiram Bingham. Bingham believed it to be the lost city of Vilcabamba, the last refuge of the Inca. In the 1940s archaeologists decided that the city was conceived and built in the mid 15th century by Pachacuti, the first Inca emperor to expand beyond the Sacred Valley towards the forested gold-lands.
Hostal Machu Picchu (1 nt)
Day 9 Aguas Calientes/Cuzco
In the early morning you have the option of heading back up to Machu Picchu to explore it further (additional charge, please note this must be booked in advance). As this is before the first train from Cuzco arrives you have the site much to yourself with only those people who have walked in or stayed overnight in Aguas Calientes. The best way to explore these fantastic Inca ruins is simply to wander around with a guide, or alone with a map to absorb the grandeur.
Machu Picchu feels like it was built in the heavens, on dizzying slopes overlooking a u-bend in the Rio Urubamba. More than one hundred flights of steep stone steps connect its palaces, temples, storehouses and terraces, and command outstanding views not only of the valley below but also the snow-capped peaks around Salkantay (6271m). Wherever you stand, spectacular terraces appear to be suspended from steep cliffs, transforming the mountain into a garden. For the more energetic there is plenty of time to climb Huayna Picchu, the sugarloaf-shaped mountain overlooking the ruins, to be rewarded with expansive views of the site. In the afternoon you return to Aguas Calientes and rejoin the train heading back to Cuzco
Hotel Suenos del Inka or Tupac Yupanqui (1 nt)
Day 10 Cuzco
Today your trip ends in Cuzco, at your hotel after breakfast
Also available to purchase
For many of our trips we have other services or experiences that are also available to purchase to extend your trip or to make your holiday a little easier. Below is a list of other travel products you can purchase in conjunction with this trip.
- Flight CUZ-UIO-LIM (PEF2)
- Flight from Cusco to Quito (PEF)
- FPB - Spirit of the Incas - Single supplement (FPB)
We've allowed plenty of room for freedom and flexibility in our trips. In fact, flexibility is one of the ingredients that makes each of our trips so exciting. This style of travel offers us some unexpected circumstances at times, for example, bad weather and road conditions, technical defects of transportation, inconveniences caused by local operators and authorities, and other circumstances beyond our control. Changes in the program may be required to make the best of the unique situations that we encounter.
Overnight stops and driving distances each day may vary to best suit the needs of the group. Our described itineraries are to be used as a general guide only.
The comforts of home are more of a rarity. English isn't common and the food will be quite different to home. It's important to observe some of the local customs to not cause offence. Many of the locals’ standard of living may be confronting.
This trip will raise your heartbeat. Moderate physical activities are included and a good level of fitness is required.
Included activities are listed in the day-to-day itinerary, all other activities are optional and at your own expense. If you choose not to participate in the included activities on this itinerary, the cost will not be refunded.
A selection of optional activities are listed in the day-to-day itinerary. This isn't an exhaustive list and should be used as a guide only and are subject to availabilities. For our families we have priced an all inclusive package including entrance fees, transport and local guide where relevant to assist you with budgeting the exact amount required on tour. It may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination. The optional activities listed in your itinerary are activities that are available to you as a guideline and have been checked locally.
The decision to partake in any activity not listed above is entirely at your own discretion and risk. If you do have any complaint about or problem with, any such optional activity your claim should be directed to the activity provider and not to us.
The official currency of Peru is the Peruvian Nuevo Sol (PEN).
Peruvian banks are allowed to reject dollar bills which are old, torn (more than one centimetre) and which have too many stamps on them. Please make sure you don't accept bills in such conditions as you may not be able to use them.
MONEY EXCHANGE - LATIN AMERICA
With ATMs being widely available in major towns and cities, credit and debit cards are the best way to access money in Latin America (note though that charges are made for each transaction). Please check with your bank before departure that your card is accepted in the countries you are travelling to. Also ensure your bank is aware of your travel plans as - suspecting fraud - they may cancel your cards after the first few international transactions.
Be aware that your withdrawing limit may vary from country to country (regardless of your withdrawing limit in your home country) and it can be as low as the equivalent to US$100 per day.
It's also advisable to carry some cash in small denominations bills, for those times when ATMs may not be available. US$ dollars is the most readily changeable currency.
US$100 bills with serial number CB or BE and any other US$ bills that are old, torn, written or stamped on will not be accepted by local banks.
Every traveller is different and therefore spending money requirements will vary. Some travellers may drink more than others while other travellers like to purchase more souvenirs than most. Please consider your own spending habits when it comes to allowing for drinks, shopping, participating in optional activities, and tipping. Please also remember the following specific recommendations when planning your trip.
If you are happy with the services provided a tip - though not compulsory - is appropriate. While it may not be customary to you, it is of great significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels, inspires excellent service, and is an entrenched feature of the tourism industry across many Intrepid destinations. We recommend that any tips are given to the intended recipient by a member of your group, rather than collected and passed on by the group leader.
Restaurants: Tipping is not expected in local markets and basic restaurants. However if you wish to tip, round your bill up to the nearest 5%. In more up-market restaurants we suggest up to 10%-12% of your bill. Some restaurants already include tipping on the final amount, which should be shown on the bill as: propina, servicio or cubiertos.
Porters (if applicable): While on the Inca Trail or Community Trek, we suggest PEN80-120 for all porters, assistants and cook.
Your crew: Tipping is entirely voluntary. The crew may be travelling with you for many weeks and usually they become good friends with most members of the group. It is sometimes easy to forget that they do work hard to ensure that you do have a great trip. If you feel you would like to tip them, they certainly would appreciate it. On a number of our trips, we also use a local guide as well as our own crew. These guides live and travel with you through their home country and it is usual to tip them when they leave. We recommend USD10 to USD15 per person
Please allow approximately US$4 for each domestic departure tax and US$31 for international departure tax from Lima.
DEMONSTRATIONS AND PROTESTS:
Demonstrations and protests, often in response to local labour or social issues, occur regularly throughout Peru. National strikes can be called at short notice and can cause disruption to road networks leading to inevitable itinerary changes. Intrepid does everything possible for these changes to be at little or no extra cost; however in such circumstances we find that travellers need to access part of, or the entire, emergency fund. Please read below for more information on this trip's emergency fund.
Age restrictions apply to this trip: minimum age 7. Please note that anyone aged under 18 must be accompanied by (and share accommodation with) a parent or legal guardian.
This trip is operated by our experienced local partner, The Adventure Company.
Maximum of 20 travellers per group.
Your fellow travellers
As you travel on a group trip you will be exposed to all the pleasures and maybe some of the frustrations of travelling in a group. Your fellow travellers will probably come from all corners of the world and likely a range of age groups too. We ask you to be understanding of the various needs and preferences of your group - patience with your fellow travellers is sometimes required for the benefit of everyone's travel experience. Remember too that you have responsibilities to the group. If you are requested to be at a place at a certain time, ensure that you don't keep the rest of the group waiting. We have found time and time again that the very best trips we operate are those where the dynamics within the group work well - this takes just a little effort on your part.
Due to privacy reasons we are unable to provide you with contact details and any personal information about your fellow travellers booked on your trip prior to departure. However you can download Intrepid's FREE Meet Up app to chat with your fellow travellers before your trip. Meet up, discuss your upcoming trip and share the excitement of planning for your adventure. For more information visit:
Our group trips are designed for shared accommodation and don't involve a compulsory single supplement. On our Family Adventures, single relatives or friends are welcome to travel along with a family. These single travellers share with people of the same gender for the duration of the trip and in accommodation ranging from twin to multishare. Please note that some of our itineraries have accommodation booked on a mixed gender share basis and where applicable this will be specified in our Trip Notes. On a selection of our Comfort and Original style trips, you have the option to pay a single supplement to ensure that you have your own room (where available). Please note that this only applies to accommodation during the tour - pre-trip and post-trip accommodation will be booked on a single room basis.
Hotel Suenos del Inka or Tupac Yupanqui (4 nts), Conde de Lemos (2 nts), Hotel Castellana or Leon de Oro (2 nts), Hostal Machu Picchu (1 nt)
Due to energy supply and timing provisions being limited in some places, please be prepared for some cold showers.
The style of accommodation indicated in the day-to-day itinerary is a guideline. On rare occasions, alternative arrangements may need to be made due to the lack of availability of rooms in your selected accommodation. A similar standard of accommodation will be used in these instances.
GENERAL ROOMING CONFIGURATIONS:
Family of two - All family groupings of two will be put into a twin room.
Family of three - Wherever possible we will put you in a triple room. Please be aware that in some places triple rooms are in short supply. This means that, in practice, a triple room will often simply be a twin room with a mattress on the floor or a further bed squashed in. Where it is impossible to provide a triple room, you will have to decide which of your party takes the single room.
Family of four or more - You will most likely stay in two twin rooms. If and wherever possible we will aim put you in a quadruple room. Whilst we will do our very best to ensure that families are roomed close together (in some cases, we can arrange adjoining rooms), we can’t guarantee this. Most family holidays occur during peak season and we sometimes have little to no control over where you will be put. You need to come prepared for this.
While travelling with us you'll experience the vast array of wonderful food available in the world. Your group leader will be able to suggest restaurants to try during your trip. On our camping trips we often cook the region's specialities so you don't miss out. To give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat, generally not all meals are included in the trip price. This also gives you more budgeting flexibility. As a rule our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other's company. There's no obligation to do this though.
Budget for meals not included:
Please note breakfasts are often simple (bread, butter, jam, coffee / tea and juice would be most common).
The diet in the Lake Titicaca region is very simple, mostly consistenting of cereal soup, potatoes, rice and chicken.
Train, Minibus, Boat, Plane
All Intrepid Family trips are accompanied by one of our group leaders. The aim of the group leader is to assist your family take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. Your leader will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for fun things to do and see- for both kids and parents, recommend great local eating venues that will even get the kids trying new things, and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the countries visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects.
Our leaders are not babysitters on this trip - we leave that to you (the experts), but they will make sure that group members of all ages are able to explore their destination safely and with as much fun as possible. Our group leaders are not responsible for looking after children at any time and children must be accompanied by a parent or guardian at all times throughout this itinerary.
For trips departing on the following dates, use this joining point.
13 Aug 2013 (FPB130813), 29 Jul 2014 (FPB140729), 12 Aug 2014 (FPB140812)
Hotel Leon de Oro
930 La Paz Av.
Joining point description
The hotel is located in the modern suburb of Miraflores, which is a great place to start a tour as the this convenient neighbourhood contains many shops, parks and restaurants. A short walk to take you to the cliff-top shopping mall of LarcoMar, where you can grab a bite to eat and enjoy the view over the bay of Lima. The central park of Miraflores, often referred to as parquet Kennedy, is also a nice place to stroll around. The hotel Leon de Oro is just a 5 minute walk from the park, close to the corner of LaPaz and 28 de Julio streets. The hotel offers free WiFi, cable TV, in-room safety deposit boxes, laundry and included breakfast. http://www.leondeoroperu.com/
Joining point instructions
The journey from Lima airport to the hotels in Miraflores takes approximately 45 minutes, taxis are available at the airport but we recommend you use official airport taxis which are safer, a company called Taxi Green is reliable and good value, they have a desk in the main halls are you walk out of the arrivals area. An airport arrival transfer is included. Please advise your flight arrival details at least 14 days prior to your departure. If you plan to arrive earlier, this arrival transfer can only be offered in conjunction with pre-tour accommodation booked through Intrepid.
If you have pre-booked your airport arrival transfer please walk oyut of the arrival area and locate the representative in the main hall area along with all the other people waiting for arriving passengers. If you have any problems and cannot locate our representative, or if your flight is delayed please call the following 24 hour numbers:
+51 84 243856 (9am - 1pm & 3pm – 7pm)
+51 984632121 (24 hours)
If you fail to make contact please take a taxi to the hotel and locate your tour leader or call the office.
We don't expect any problems (and nor should you) but if for any reason you are unable to commence your group trip as scheduled, please contact your starting point hotel, requesting that you speak to or leave a message for your group leader.
If you have pre-booked an airport transfer (where available) and have not made contact with our representative within 30 minutes of clearing customs and immigration, we recommend that you make your own way to the starting point hotel, following the Joining Instructions in these Trip Notes. Should this occur, please apply to your travel agent for a refund of the transfer cost on your return.
No refund is available on missed transfers or portions of your trip owing to a different flight arrival or delayed flight arrival. Any additional cost incurred in order to meet up with your group is at your own expense.
For trips departing on the following dates, use this finish point.
13 Aug 2013 (FPB130813), 12 Aug 2014 (FPB140812)
Tupac Yupanqui Palace
Calle San Agustin 236
Finish point description
The hotel is located in the historic center of town just a 2 minute walk from the main square, so it is very convenient for a stroll around the town center. You can also take a short walk to the artists quarter in the suburb of San Blas. The hotel is converted old mansion house and offers free WiFi, cable TV, in-room safety deposit boxes, laundry and included breakfast. http://www.hoteltupacyupanqui.com/index.php
Finish point instructions
Taxis are readily available in the bustling city center of Cusco and the journey to the airport only takes 15 minutes. The taxi should charge around $8-$10 US dollars ot the equivalent in Peruvian currency (sol). On arribval at the airport go into the main hall and locate your airline along the line of desks infront of you. Once you have check in, there are no taxes to be paid so you go g straight to the gates in this small and easy to navigate airport. A prebooked departure transfer from our hotel to the airport may be available depending on date of travel and if arranged at the time of booking. Please advise your flight details at least 14 days prior to your trips start date. If you plan to stay longer, this departure transfer can only be offered in conjunction with post-tour accommodation booked through Intrepid.
Check out time from the hotel is at 10am. If you are departing later, you can arrange luggage storage at the hotel.
Alternate Finish point
For trips departing on the following dates, use this finish point.
29 Jul 2014 (FPB140729)
Please also make sure you have access to an additional US$400, to be used when unforeseen incidents or circumstances outside our control (eg. a natural disaster, civil unrest or an outbreak of bird flu) necessitate a change to our planned route.
Visas are the responsibility of the individual traveller. The visa requirements for your trip vary depending on where you are from and where you are going. As a general rule most countries expect that you will have at least 6 months' validity on your passport. On arrival visitors may be asked to present return tickets and evidence of means to cover your intended stay.
We keep the following information up to date as much as possible, but rules do change - it's important that you check for yourself. Residents from other countries must consult the relevant embassies or your travel agent.
PERU TOURIST VISA
Australia: Not required
Belgium: Not required
Canada: Not required
Germany: Not required
Ireland: Not required
Netherlands: Not required
New Zealand: Not required
South Africa: Not required
Switzerland: Not required
United Kingdom: Not required
United States: Not required
Issues on your trip
While we always endeavour to provide the best possible holiday experience, due to the nature of travel and the areas we visit sometimes things can and do go wrong. Should any issue occur while you are on your trip, it is imperative that you discuss this with your group leader or our local representative straight away so that they can do their best to rectify the problem and save any potential negative impact on the rest of your trip.
We recognise that there may be times when your group leader/local partner may not be able to resolve a situation to your satisfaction - if this is the case, please ask the leader to speak to their direct manager.
You may also choose to provide details in your online feedback, which we ask you to complete within 30 days of the end of your trip. But we do ask you to be aware that it is very difficult for us to provide any practical help after the trip is complete.
What to take
CLIMATE & CLOTHING:
Most people automatically assume that the weather is hot in South America, but because of the higher altitude in the Andes, the temperature can feel quite cold, especially at night. Please pack accordingly.
What you need to bring will vary according to the trip style you have chosen, the countries you are visiting and when you are travelling. Generally speaking you should pack as lightly as possible. On the vast majority of our trips you are expected to carry your own luggage and although you won't be required to walk long distances with your luggage (max 30 minutes), we recommend keeping the weight under 10kg / 22lb.
Most travellers carry their luggage in a backpack, although an overnight bag with a shoulder strap would suffice if you travel lightly. Smaller bags or backpacks with wheels are convenient although we recommend your bag has carry straps. You'll also need a day pack/bag to carry water and a camera etc for day trips.
You can find Intrepid's Ultimate Packing List on our website. It should be used as a guide only and isn't intended to be a complete packing list.
Consider bringing your own water bottle to refill along the way. The sale of bottled water contributes to an enormous environmental problem around the world. In addition to the water in bottles, the production of a 1 litre plastic bottle takes 2 litres of water and 200ml of oil. A large proportion end up in limited landfill or discarded in waterways and natural environments. Please avoid the purchase of bottled water by using the chemically sterilized water stored in the purpose-built storage tank or in water jerry cans in your overland vehicle. You're free to refill your bottle as many times a day as you like.
Please try to avoid bringing unnecessary valuables, and use your hotel safe and the safe on the overland truck to store the bulk of your money, passport, and airline tickets. It’s also a good idea to purchase a money belt or pouch that is easily hidden.
We strongly recommend that you photocopy all important documents e.g. air tickets, passport, vaccination certificate, etc. and keep the copies separate from the originals. While not valid, a photocopy makes it very much easier to obtain replacements if necessary.
All Intrepid travellers need to be in good physical health in order to participate fully on this trip. When selecting your trip please make sure you have read through the itinerary carefully and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please note that if, in the opinion of our group leader or local guide, any traveller is unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group, Intrepid reserves the right to exclude them from all or part of a trip without refund.
You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information or for any necessary vaccinations and anti-malarial requirements before departure. We recommend that you carry a first aid kit as well as any personal medical requirements (including a spare pair of glasses) as they may not easily be obtained at the locations on this trip. For legal reasons our leaders and guides are prohibited from administering any type of drugs including headache tablets and antibiotics. Please ensure that you are adequately prepared.
As a rule we recommend you don't drink tap water, even in hotels, as it contains much higher levels of different minerals than the water you may have at home. For local people this is not a problem as their bodies are used to this and can cope, but for visitors drinking the tap water can result in illness. Generally this isn't serious, an upset stomach being the only symptom, but it's enough to spoil a day or two of your holiday. Bottled water is widely available and your leader can recommend safe alternatives when available. Water consumption should be about 3 litres a day. Rehydration salts, motion sickness tablets, and diarrhoea blockers are available from many pharmacies.
Parts of your trip go above 2800 metres / 9200 feet where it is common for travellers to experience some adverse health effects due to the altitude - regardless of your age, gender and fitness. It even happened to Sir Edmund Hillary!
Before your trip.
Some pre-existing medical conditions are known to severely worsen at high altitude and be difficult to adequately treat on the ground, leading to more serious consequences. It is imperative that you discuss your pre-existing medical condition/s with your doctor
We understand certain medications are reported to aid acclimatizing to high altitude. Please discuss these options with your doctor.
During your trip.
While our leaders have basic first aid training and are aware of the closest medical facilities, it is very important that you are aware of the cause and effects of travelling at altitude, monitor your health and seek assistance accordingly.
Please read the following document carefully and, during your trip, utilise the table on the back daily to record your own perspective of your general health and any symptoms you may experience:
Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before departure. Please refer to our website's safety page for links to major travel advisories and updates on safety issues affecting our trip.
We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe-keeping of your passport, air tickets, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home - you won't need it while travelling. Many of our hotels have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage.
Your leader will accompany you on all included activities, however during your trip you'll have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. While your group leader will assist you with the available options in a given location, please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your Intrepid itinerary, and Intrepid makes no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgement when selecting an activity in your free time. Please also note that your group leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it's deemed necessary due to safety concerns.
For more details on the type of conditions and safety standards you can expect on your trip, please refer to Intrepid's operational safety policy on our website. We recommend that you take a moment to read through this information before travelling, and would appreciate any feedback on how well it's being implemented in the field:
PETTY THEFT AND PERSONAL SAFETY:
While travelling there is always the risk of pick-pocketing and petty theft, particularly in the more touristy cities. We recommend that you exercise caution when walking alone at night and encourage you to walk together and only on main, well-lit thoroughfares. Be particularly vigilant on public transport. Simple measures like carrying your day pack on your front, not hanging your bag over the back of your chair and wearing a money belt will reduce any chance that your valuables should go missing.
Travel insurance is compulsory for all our trips. We require that, at a minimum, you are covered for medical expenses including emergency repatriation. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects.
When travelling on a group trip, you won't be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance and the insurance company's 24 hour emergency contact number has been seen by your leader.
If you have credit card insurance your group leader will require details of the participating insurer/underwriter, the level of coverage, policy number and emergency contact number rather than the bank's name and credit card details. Please contact your bank for these details prior to arriving in-country.
Please go to our website for links to various travel insurance providers:
We believe strongly in low impact or rather positive impact tourism. Broadly speaking this means that we try to minimise the negative aspects of tourism on the local cultures and environments that we visit and highlight the positive aspects. Please visit our website for further details and suggestions on how you can be a responsible traveller:
Dress standards are conservative throughout Asia, especially outside major cities. To respect this and for your own comfort, we strongly recommend modest clothing. This means clothing that covers your shoulders and knees. Loose, lightweight, long clothing is both respectful and cool in areas of predominantly hot climate. In many rural areas women will need to wear modest clothing even to swim. Singlets, tank tops and topless sun bathing are all unacceptable. When visiting religious sites men often need to wear long trousers and women a long skirt or sarong.
Latin Americans can be very conscious of appearance so try to be casual but conservative in your dress. Outside of beach areas halter tops and very short shorts should not be worn. When visiting churches or religious sites shoulders and knees should be covered.
A couple of rules
Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on our trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land, but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for Intrepid travellers. Intrepid's philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter and in particular, the local people who make our destinations such special places. The exploitation of prostitutes is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our group leader has the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they use prostitutes.
The Intrepid Foundation
Since Intrepid Travel commenced operating in 1989 we've been committed to giving something back to the communities we visit. One way has been through our support for local humanitarian, development and conservation projects. Many of our travellers want to contribute something too. Whilst it is often tempting to give hand-outs to those less fortunate, this has the potential to promote a culture of begging and dependency. Handouts are not a sustainable way for individuals or communities to live. That’s why we established The Intrepid Foundation – to make it easier for travellers wishing to give back to communities in an effective and meaningful way.
The Intrepid Foundation is a not-for-profit fund offering a selection of excellent grassroots organisations which you can contribute to. All donations to The Intrepid Foundation will be matched by Intrepid Travel dollar for dollar (up to AU$5,000 per donor and a total of AU$400,000 for all donors in each financial year). And every cent gets there as Intrepid Travel pays for all the administration costs. Donating is simple and secure. Please ask your group leader for information on the projects we support through The Intrepid Foundation or go to our website:
Responsible Travel projects
Organisations and projects currently supported by The Intrepid Foundation in Peru include:
* Living Heart focuses on improving the education, nutrition and health of disadvantaged Andean women and children near Cusco. Currently they provide free breakfasts, assist local schools with educational supplies and organise visits by doctors and nurses. They are also raising funds to build homes for orphaned children and abused women and children.
* Escuela Winaypaq provides free education and food to children living in extreme poverty in the Taray District. In 2010, severe mud slides, flooding and rain resulted in the destruction of the school. A new school, which is close to completion, will provide classes for 54 kindergarten and primary school students and have six teachers.
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