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Children from rural Peru
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Global Community Peruvian man with llama
machu picchu

PERU ITINERARIES

Best known for its ancient Incan history, Peru offers an incredible family

experience.  Artistically, the caliber of crafts, textiles and music is nothing less than amazing.

Learning the ancient and colonial history along with the current

agricultural focus is fascinating.  And connecting with the people and the

deep spiritual fabric of this region will change you for the better.

Each of our itineraries has unique offerings allowing for cultural engagement and community give-back. Here are some of the things that will make your trip to Peru special:

HIGHLIGHTS FOR FAMILIES

WITH TEENAGERS

 

Special Activity:

EXPLORE PERUVIAN MUSIC

ATTEND A CHERANGO

WORKSHOP

 

Visit a private charango workshop where you meet a traditional Cuzqueño luthier and learn how charangos, ronrocos, bandurrias and other unique Andean instruments are hand-made.

 

  • Learn about the distinctive “Seminario Style” of ceramics during a fun and interactive private pottery workshop in Urubamba
  • Peruvian barbecue lunch at Wayra Ranch featuring a live paso horse performance
  • Learn about traditional Andean cooking techniques during a pachamanca lunch at a local organic farm
  • Enjoy an evening “pisco tasting and tapas” at Museo del Pisco with an expert pisquero (pisco sommelier). Here, you will learn about the subtle differences between different varieties of Peruvian pisco and perfect the art of making your own pisco sour (this is also suitable for those too young to drink)

 

HIGHLIGHTS FOR

ADULT ONLY TRAVELERS

Special Activity:

ATTEND A COCO LEAF

CEREMONY WITH A

CUSQUENO SHAMAN

 

Meet a Cuzqueño shaman for a traditional coca leaf ceremony, a highly traditional practice that continues to

play an integral role in Andean society to this day

HIGHLIGHTS FOR FAMILIES

WITH CHILDREN UNDER 12

Special Activity:

UNDERSTAND THE CHOCOLATE

MAKING PROCESS

VISIT THE MUSEO CHOCO

 

Participate in a hands-on cacao-making workshop at Museo Choco, an artisanal chocolate factory that sources and processes the best cacao beans in Peru and transforms them into delicious Peruvian chocolates.

  • You may also choose to visit an Andean bear sanctuary that rescues injured and abused Spectacled bears with the goal of eventually reintroducing them to the wild (available on 5-star itinerary)
  • Learn the art of traditional Andean hand-weaving during a private weaving workshop in the village of Chinchero.
  • Experience the day-to-day life of local inhabitants at a traditional potato-farming village in the remote Andes. Learn about traditional farming practices, meet a local Andean shaman for a traditional coca leaf leaving offering, and partake in a centuries-old llama tinku ceremony
  • Learn about native Andean camelids at Awanakancha, a small camelid farm dedicated to educating guests about the importance that native llamas, alpacas, and vicuñas have played in Andean culture since pre-Columbian times
  • Witness a Peruvian-inspired circus performance while you eat at the Wayra Restaurant (available seasonally and on 5-star itinerary)

 

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  • Six to eight hour day hike on the last leg of the Inca Trail from km 104 with an expert guide
  • Martín Chambi Photography Exhibition, an exclusive photography exhibit that introduces you a hand-selected assortment of Chambi’s most distinctive works. Deemed the “Father of Indigenous Photography in the Andes,” Martín Chambi was one of the first indigenous photographers to capture the beauty of the Peruvian highlands through a native lens and his extraordinary black-and-white pieces continue to inspire contemporary photographers to this day
  • Play sapo and learn about chicha at a corn-beer brewery (“chichería”)in the Sacred Valley. Here you will meet one of the most respected brewers in the Sacred Valley,  and learn how this immensely popular Andean beverage is made.
  • Evening “pisco tasting and tapas” at Museo del Pisco with an expert sommelier (“pisquero”). Here, you will learn about the subtle differences between different varieties of Peruvian Pisco and perfect the art of making your own pisco sour

 

 

 

GLOBAL COMMUNITY GIVE-BACK

 

Volunteering in the Rural Yachaq Communities

Experience the ancient agricultural techniques that are used in indigenous communities throughout the Sacred Valley and beyond. Visit a rural ayllu (community) to help in the fields with planting, sowing, or harvesting, depending on the time of the year. Led by local Quechua guides and translated into English, this immersive half-day volunteering experience takes you to a mountain village on the outskirts of the Sacred Valley. Here you will spend a half-day learning about different Andean crops, agricultural techniques, and the various rituals that take place within the agrarian calendar year. You will sow and harvest native products using the same ancient tools that the ancestors of the Inca have used for centuries. Continue on an interactive walking tour of the community, discovering traditional activities such as hand-weaving and fermenting corn to make chicha.  The experience will be facilitated by a local guide who will help translate between English and Spanish/Quechua and includes a traditional Cuzqueño lunch.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Volunteer in the Organic Garden and Discover Deep-Rooted Musical Traditions at the Kusi Kawsay School

Kusi Kawsay is a Waldorf-inspired school situated on the outskirts of the Sacred Valley. Rooted in local Andean tradition, Kusi Kawsay aims to serve as an educational model which will inspire other indigenous schools to approach learning through a sensitive and stimulating environment while honoring and celebrating traditional ways of life. By supporting traditional cultural practices, children will embrace the ecological mindfulness of their ancestors, and help foster a balanced ecosystem.

During this interactive half-day exchange, you will volunteer with students at the Kusi Kawsay school, helping with local projects, working side-by-side with local students in the organic garden, and learning about the Andean agrarian calendar (which their school calendar is based on), and all of the important rituals throughout the year. These include planting, harvesting, and the pilgrimage to the sacred ice (this is what Holly Wissler’s first documentary, Qoyllur Rit’i, is about).  As a portion of the trip, there will be a donation per student made towards Kusi Kawsay, which will help sponsor poor students who cannot pay and have to walk 2 hours one-way to school from remote villages.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cultural Exchange with a Q’ero Family  (Special Request Only, Subject to Availability)

During this exclusive exchange, ethnomusicologist and Quechua cultural expert Holly Wissler will come to the Sacred Valley with a family from Q’eros, a highly traditional indigenous group that lives at 14,000 ft. above sea level in the remote Andes Mountains. During the exchange at a local chichería, Holly will provide contextual understanding for who the Q’eros are and shed light on the traditional Q’ero way of life. You will learn about the community’s unique cosmovision and how their ancient roots continue to resonate through their dress, music, textiles, and other aspects of their personal lives. Prior to the journey, you will be sent Holly’s documentary “Kusisqa Waqashayku,” which sheds light on deep-rooted Q’eros traditions and musical rituals. The proceeds from this documentary help support the Q’eros’ unique cultural customs and educate families about the unique customs of the indigenous family they are going to meet in Peru.  After Holly’s presentation with the Q’eros, the kids will have room to play in the backyard while teens and young adults chat and play sapo over a cold glass of chicha de jora or chicha morada. If you would like, you can ask the Q’eros to make an offering to the mountain gods and mother earth, asking for support or guidance in a particular matter, or simply asking for a good journey! Since the Q’ero community is monolingual Quechua, all dialogue between you and the Q’eros (with Holly translating from English to Quechua).

Note: Only available June through August when Holly Wissler is available. You may also choose to extend your stay an extra night in Cusco for a Q’eros homestay and volunteer experience.