PERU: Dining & Discovery

Summer or Fall, 2017 (10 days, 9 nights)

Peru will forever be equated with the Inca civilization that flourished in the 15th and early 16th centuries.  During the empire’s zenith, the Incas cultivated four times the amount of arable land as Peruvians do today and made remarkable – and mysterious – accomplishments in architecture, such as Sacsayhuaman and Machu Picchu.  That all changed when the Spanish invaded Peru in 1531.  Without that event, though, there would be no french fries or sweet potato pie.  (In the Andes region alone there are 3,000 varieties of potato.)

Today, Peruvian cuisine is a rich fusion of different cultural influences – hence one of the world’s most distinguished.  It incorporates unique and flavorful ingredients stemming from its three distinct geographic regions: the coast, the Andes and the Amazon Jungle.  Over the last decade, this regional and multi-cultural gastronomy has been earning it many accolades.

On this remarkable journey, observe the country’s greatest Inca ruins and remnants of its Spanish colonial past.  Along the way enjoy wonderful culinary experiences that complement your visit and give you tremendous insight into Peru’s traditions and current way of life.

*Please note that if booking independent travel as a self-drive, some culinary elements of the tour may change.

Delicious Highlights will include

  • Wander through a typical Peruvian market in Lima
  • Experience a cooking class followed by three-course lunch
  • Visit to Inca ruins for a one-of-a-kind outdoor dining experience, starting with a famous Pisco Sour cocktail
  • Lunch at an authentic Peruvian hacienda for a traditional country style lunch and paso horse show
  • Enjoy a unique Amazonian dinner at one of Lima’s top restaurants.
  • Lunch at the famed Larco Museum Cafe, offering an enchanting ambience and great cuisine. Time afterward for an optional visit to Choco-Museum (and a “bean-to-bar” experience!)
  • Enchanting dinner at a seafood restaurant situated on a gorgeous historic pier directly overlooking the Pacific Ocean.
  • Experience a unique Andean dinner in a traditional, quaint and casual restaurant tucked away in a small street in Urumbamba
  • Take part in a unique cooking class at monastary-like hacienda that also has a museum with ancient and contemporary art
  • Enjoy an a la carte lunch at the Belmond Sanctuary Lodge restaurant – the only hotel next to Machu Picchu
  • Experience a once-in-a-lifetime dinner aboard the luxury Hiram Bingham train as you travel through the Andes
  • Morning tour of the San Pedro Market in Cusco
  • Lunch at cafe in the Bohemian San Blas neighborhood of Cusco; cooked in clay pots over wood fired stoves and ovens.
  • Dinner at the cafe in the Museum of Pre Columbian Art; a gem in the heart of Cusco
  • Lunch at El Parador de Moray, a unique restaurant located on the site of ancient agricultural terraces where the Inca grew seeds for farming

Sightseeing Highlights:

  • Embark on a panoramic sightseeing tour of colonial Lima
  • Visit to the Larco Herrera Museum
  • Tour of the Sacred Valley and the archeological site of Pisac
  • Take the Vistadome train to Aguas Calientes
  • Explore amazing Machu Picchu, the “Lost City of the Incas” during an early morning tour
  • Journey aboard the premier Hiram Bingham train
  • City tour of Cusco and the archeological complex of the Citadel of Sacsayhuaman where we can observe the incomparable stonework of the Incas
  • See a weaving demonstration of Chinchero textiles
  • Experience a Pachamama mother earth offering ceremony

Included in your tour is:

  • Eight-day tour by luxury coach
  • Two journeys by train (One on the Hiram Bingham and one on the VistaDome)
  • Internal air
  • Breakfast daily
  • 7 lunches and 7 dinners
  • Four nights at the Belmond Miraflores Park Hotel, Lima
  • Two nights at Belmond Rio Sagrado, Urubamba, Sacred Valley
  • One night at Inkaterra Machu Picchu Pueblo, Aguas Calientes
  • Two nights at Belmond Palacio Nazarenas, Cusco

Day 1
Bienvenidos a Lima! Your driver and tour guide will be waiting for the group at the Jorge Chávez International Airport for a group transfer to the hotel.

Belmond Miraflores Park Hotel, Lima

Day 2:
We start the morning with a visit to a typical Peruvian market where you will be able to appreciate a wide variety of Peruvian products and produce. Enjoy and taste exotic fruits. Be amazed by a huge variety of fish and seafood as the Peruvian coast of the Pacific Ocean is considered one of the richest in the world. After your visit to the market, you will be taken to Urban Kitchen, a friendly cooking space where you’ll learn to prepare a few of Peru’s flagship dishes.

The experience includes preparing a chilcano (Peruvian pisco drink), as well as a quinoa salad and an entree such as Aji de Gallina. A traditional dessert such as a chirimoya mousse or alfajor is also part of the menu. After class, you will sit down at a table to have a nice glass of wine or beer and enjoy the food you just prepared. You’ll also take home an English recipe book, an Urban Kitchen apron and a culinary souvenir. After lunch, return to your hotel.

Afternoon at leisure. Dinner at Huaca Pucllana Restaurant – that overlooks an impressive pre-Inca archaeological site – to enjoy a very traditional Lima menu for dinner (about 3 hours). The culinary experience will begin with a delectable pisco sour or chilcano and the following hor d’oeuvres: tuna tiradito nikkei, yuca with huancaina sauce, and anticuchos (cow heart skewers) with hot chili sauce. Dinner will follow with a shrimp causa as an appetizer, lomo saltado as the main course, and classic suspiro a la Limeña as dessert.

Dinner tonight at the AMAZ restaurant by Chef Pedro Miguel Schiaffino. AMAZ was conceived as a way of bringing the culture and raw materials of the Amazon region to the gastronomic world. It has a contemporary focus and it seeks to disseminate and preserve the Amazon’s offering, one of the planet’s most diverse and rich biological areas. In this unique culinary experience, you will try new and unexpected flavors. Enjoy a welcome cocktail, chicken cracklings stuffed with chestnuts, yuca empanada, ceviche-style fresh tuna, Amazon-style lomo saltado with beef jerky and plantains, maduro canga with cheese, coconut rice, chonta salad, a seasonal dessert, and coffee or tea. Some of the dishes may vary depending on the seasonality of the ingredients. After dinner, you will return to your hotel.

Belmond Miraflores Park Hotel, Lima

Day 3:
The day begins with a panoramic tour around the traditional districts of Miraflores (overlooking the Pacific Ocean and Huaca Huallamarca) and San Isidro. The tour continues to downtown Lima where you will visit the San Francisco Convent, the catacombs and the old colonial House of Aliaga. You will stop at the main square where the Cathedral of Lima is located, and where you will have the opportunity to take some pictures of its amazing colonial architecture. NOTE: The San Francisco Convent may be closed on holidays.

After the tour, you will be transferred to Hacienda Los Ficus in Lurin (south of Lima) where you will enjoy a traditional Peruvian country-style lunch and a Peruvian Paso horse performance. The lunch experience includes a visit to the vegetable garden and a delicious and earthy buffet that includes a welcome pisco sour, a glass of wine (red or white), and a table of assorted steamed Peruvian potatoes, mixed fresh salad from the farm, seasonal lettuces and vegetables, oven-cooked ficus-style chicken, Peruvian bean stew, white rice with Peruvian corn kernels and a delicious selection of sauces: huancaína sauce, criolla sauce, yellow chili pepper sauce and balsamic vinaigrette. For dessert, you will enjoy a creamy “tocinillo del cielo” tart with granadilla sorbet. The Peruvian Paso Horse show is unlike any other, as these magnificent animals wear elegant outfits called aperos, and parade around in their own singular way to the sound of marinera a type of music typical of the coast of Peru. After lunch, return to your hotel.

Belmond Miraflores Park Hotel, Lima

Day 4:
Larco Museum Visit: Pickup from the lobby of your hotel. Visit the Larco Herrera Museum where you will appreciate the finest collection of gold and silver ornaments from ancient Peru, as well as the famous collection of erotic art. NOTE: Museum may be closed during some holidays. Lunch at the Larco Museum café/restaurant offering an enchanting ambiance where you will savor great Peruvian cuisine. Lunch includes a not-to-be-missed pisco sour, a traditional papa a la huancaina appetizer and a flavorful arroz con mariscos, or seafood rice Peruvian-style, as the main course. For dessert, enjoy the unique flavor of a lucuma mousse. Return to your hotel.

Afternoon free to visit the Choco Museum in the district of Barranco at your leisure. In the evening, you will go to Amor Amar restaurant, a contemporary Peruvian seafood restaurant known for creating flavors that are typical Peruvian but with special attention to fresh, local and seasonal ingredients (about 3 hours. After dinner, you will return to your hotel.

Belmond Miraflores Park Hotel, Lima

Day 5:

Early morning hotel departure at 6:45am for transfer to the airport. Flight to Cusco is 1 hr 45 min. Upon arrival we will drive to Urubamba (2,800m/9,184ft), located 1 ½ hours from the City of Cusco. Afternoon free to acclimate to the altitude. Dinner at El Huacatay restaurant, which is a traditional, quaint and casual Andean restaurant tucked down a narrow side street in Urubamba. It offers a dinner menu which includes 3 rounds of hot and cold meals.

Belmond Rio Sagrado, Urubamba

Day 6:
A day at leisure to enjoy the activities and spa offered at the hotel. Breakfast included. Recommend Wayra or Tres Keros.

Belmond Rio Sagrado, Urubamba

Day 7:
Sacred Valley Tour (about 8 ½ hours): Pickup from the lobby of your hotel. Visit the food market (Sundays only) and the archeological site of Pisac. Lunch and cooking classes at Hacienda Huayoccari, a peaceful, almost monastery-like atmosphere, and a beautifully restored hacienda that includes an impressive museum of ancient and modern art. It serves delicious  regional food specialties. You will then be transferred to the Ollantaytambo Station to take the Vistadome Train departing at 3:37pm and arriving to Aguas Calientes at 5:05pm. Transfer to the hotel in  Aguas Calientes assisted by the hotel’s staff. Dinner at the hotel.

Inkaterra Machu Picchu Pueblo, Aguas Calientes

Day 8:
Early morning departure from the hotel to take the bus up to the Citadel of Machu Picchu (2,350m/7,710ft) and explore the great “Lost City of the Incas” together (about 2 ½ hours). A la carte lunch in Tampu Restaurant at Belmond Sanctuary Lodge.

You will then take the bus down at the main entrance of Belmond Sanctuary Lodge to be transferred to Aguas Calientes and then to the station to take the premier Hiram Bingham Train departing at 5:50pm and arriving at 9:16pm to Poroy (15-20min from the city of Cusco). You will enjoy a delicious 4-course, Andean-inspired dinner onboard. Upon your arrival, you will look for a sign with your name to be transferred to your hotel in Cusco (3,350m/10,988ft).

Belmond Palacio Nazarenas, Cusco

Day 9:
City tour of Cusco which includes a visit to the Koricancha or Temple of the Sun, the archaeological complex of Sacsayhuaman, and the San Pedro Market where you will enjoy a taste of fresh  produce, herbs, artisanal bread and local desserts and chocolates. Or simply purchase beautiful hand-woven baskets and souvenirs. After this tour, return to your hotel. For lunch we will be going to Pachapapa Restaurant in bohemian San Blas. Invoking a rustic highland ambience, the open courtyard of Pachapapa with wooden tables serves up well-prepared Peruvian classics cooked over a wood fire or in clay pots. It is a good spot to try buttered corn in herbs, aji de gallina or oven-fired trout. After lunch, return to your hotel.

Pickup from the lobby of your hotel and transfer to MAP Cafe Restaurant (read reviews here) to have dinner (about 3 hours). MAP Café by Chef Coque Ossio is a small, glass-enclosed, elegant café inside the courtyard of the Museo de Arte Precolombino. Of its novel and exciting twists on traditional Peruvian cuisine, try the chicken estofado (stew) with goat cheese and raisins or the pork adobo with ravioli. They have a 3-course menu to choose from a few different options. After dinner, return to your hotel.

Belmond Palacio Nazarenas, Cusco

Day 10:
Chinchero Tour: Pickup from the lobby of your hotel and transfer to the textile town of Chinchero  3,800m/12,464ft, about 4 – 5 hours), where you will enjoy the food market (Sundays only) and weaving demonstration.

Optional: You can take part in a Pachamama (Mother Earth) Offering Ceremony (about 2 hours). The ceremony is an offering of small amounts of native  Andean seeds, grains, and fruits, together with coca leaves. During the ceremony, the Apus, who are the sacred mountain deities, and the four elements – Earth, Water, Air, Fire – are welcomed.  The three levels of life (hanan pacha: the world above, kay pacha: this world, and ukhu pacha: the underworld) are represented by the components of the offering and a ritual toast (challa) is made  with chicha de jora (native corn beer). The ceremony ends with the ritual burning of the offerings so that they can return from where they came, rising into the sky while the remaining ashes are buried in the earth to complete the cycle.” Return to Cusco.

Lunch at La Feria, a Peruvian picantería. In 2015, the picanteria was declared a part of Peru’s National Cultural Patrimony and at La Feria the traditional Peruvian kitchen is honored by utilizing age-old recipes, sitting down to feast together at large tables with classic coverings, and by sharing the warmth of the kitchen in the form of flavorful and generous servings. The flavors of  Peru’s most representative picanterias are brought to the table: From Cusco, a classic chairo soup or some roasted guinea pig and rocoto soufflé with potato casserole; from Lima, causa rellen, chicken with rice, and huancaina; from Piura, ceviche or mixed jalea. The delightfully familiar chicha de jora or quinoa chicha brings strength and nourishment for all who try them.

After lunch, you will be transferred to the airport to take your flight from Cusco to Lima (LATAM LA2062 departing at 6:10pm and arriving at 7:40pm) to then take your international flight back to the US.

INCHICAPI SOUP

This inchicapi soup is a tasty, creamy soup originating in the Amazonic area.  It’s commonly served as an appetizer.  Serves 6-8

INGREDIENTS

1 whole chicken, cut into pieces
1 cup toasted peanuts
9 oz cornflour
2 peeled, minced garlic cloves
1 small onion
1/2  cup cilantro
1 lb cooked yucca (manioc or cassava may also be used)
salt & pepper to taste (and

INSTRUCTIONS

Brown onions and chicken and then cook in a large pot in 12 cups of water.  Blend peanuts, cornflour, cilantro leaves, garlic and onion with 1/2 cup of cooking broth.  Add the blended mixture to the chicken and bring to a boil.  Stir occasionally and add more water if needed. When soup is almost ready, add the diced, cooked yucca and mix

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Click on the image
to download a printable PDF
version of this tour.

Peru Flyer

2015 winner of the World’s Leading Culinary Destination.

– World Travel Awards

Starting from $5,290  per person (land and internal air – group of 12)    

Return airfare from Chicago around $625.

Cost for independent travel upon request.                                                                                       

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