Peru and Bolivia in 3 Weeks
I bought my tickets!!!! I will have 22 days to explore Peru and Bolivia (total, not each, since I do have to go back to work)!
I’ve been daydreaming about Machu Picchu since I was in high school and after being in South America for 2.5 years I will finally go see this iconic place! Since reading about Bolivia in Uni I have also wanted to see more of that country, and this will be my chance.
I have written up an itinerary, but so far I only have my first and last flights booked. I would love to hear from anyone who has done a trip similar to this for any tips or advice. Stuff is already starting to book up now so I want to get started booking hostels and whatnot.
December is rainy season in South America. Sigh. I play with the cards I’m dealt. Since it is the rainy season, Machu Pichu might not be at it’s most beautiful, but hopefully I will be able to see it without any problems. I originally planned on seeing Rurrenbaque and exploring the Amazon Forest and River Basin, but I read in several places that roads become impassible and flights are frequently canceled in December.
Day 1- Saturday, December 20th
Arrive in Lima at 10:20PM. 45 min taxi to hostel $25US (I have read that it is best reserve a taxi when arriving late at night http://taxidatum.com/)
Spend the night at Pariwana Backpacker Hostel $14/night ($40 total)
Day 2 – Sunday, December 21- Lima
See the Mercado de Brujas (Witches Market).
Salsa dancing at Markanos Latin Salsa Jr. Andahuaylas 487, San Martín de Porres, Altura cuadra 32 Av. Perú. Phone: 568-7353 Sundays 9.00 p.m. OR Son de Cuba Calle de las Pizzas, San Ramón 277, Miraflores. Phone: 4451444 Tuesday through Sunday
Day 3- Monday, December 22 Explore Lima center.
Day 4 Tuesday, December 23 6:50AM flight from Lima to Cusco ($93- 1 hr). Explore Cusco.
Day 5 Wednesday, December 24 Cusco to Machu Picchu (Aguas Calientes) 2 Day Machu Picchu Tour $215. Has anyone else done Machu Picchu by car that I saw mentioned over at Matador? If I had a group of people (or even one other person) I would try to do what this guy did and book everything himself and save half the cost!
Visit hot springs?
Day 6 Thursday, December 25 Machu Picchu- Christmas Day 9PM train back to Cusco with tour.
Catch first bus at 5:30AM OR if it isn’t raining consider hiking up the stairs at 5AM and beating the bus. Don’t pay extra to hike Hauyna Picchu in the rainy season because it is way more dangerous and takes much longer.
Spend night in Cusco at Pariwana Backpacker Cusco $14
Day 7 Friday, December 26 Cusco Sacred Valley Tour?
10PM overnight bus to Puno $27 for VIP seat
Day 8 – Saturday, December 27 arrive in Puno at 4:30 AM.
Arrive at Kantaya Hostel $9. Take a nap.
Leave for a half day trip to the Uros Islands at 9AM.
Day 9- Sunday, December 28 7AM Bus from Puno to La Paz $25 8.5 hours.
Arrive in La Paz at 4pm.
Stay at Adventure Brew Hostel ($12/N, $49 total)
Day 10 Monday, December 29 La Paz
Death Road Bicycle ride with Gravity. Ride for 4-5 hours but tour takes all day. Cost? Is it safe in the rainy season?
Day 11 Tuesday, December 30 Wander around La Paz
Cuban Salsa Band at Mongo’s Calle Hermanos Manchego #2444, Sopocachi Telephone: 2440714
Day 12 Wednesday, December 31 La Paz- New Year’s Eve!!
Day 13 Thursday, January 1 Fly early morning from La Paz to Sucre (70US)
Dance at Joy Ride Cafe
Stay at the Beehive Sucre $10.50/n $21 total
Day 14 Friday, January 2 Explore Sucre.
Salsa dancing at Locot’s 465 Calle Bolivar
Day 15 Saturday, January 3 Early morning bus or taxi from Sucre to Potosi (2-4 hrs $2.50 for bus or $16 for shared taxi)
Stay at La Casona ($7.90/n $15.83 total)
Day 16 Sunday, January 4 Potosi Silver Mine Tour (4-5 hours)
Day 17 Monday, January 5 Early morning bus from Potosi to Uyuni (6-7 hours $4)
My plan is to only stay one night in Uyuni itself and the rest of the time doing a Jeep 4X4 tour. Any advice on a hotel/hostel and/or tour company in Uyuni because I’m not finding much online!?
Days 17/18/19/20- Monday, Jan 5 through Thursday, Jan 8 Explore Uyuni. The Salt Flats aka Salar de Uyuni is the main reason I want to go to Uyuni so I want to budget plenty of time to see it. On the Salar de Uyuni tour I want to see the train cemetery, flamingos, arbol de piedra, some lagoons, and maybe some thermal waters.
Day 21 Thursday, Jan 8- Breakfast and Lunch in Uyuni. Fly from Uyuni to La Paz (45 min- $213) Flight leaves at 4:45PM. Spend the night in La Paz at Adventure Brew Hostel $12.30/N
Day 22 Friday, Jan 9 Fly from La Paz to Lima 8AM (2 hrs $421)
Relax in the Pay Purix Hostel $12.27/N
Day 23- Saturday, January 10th Arrive at midnight to airport and leave at 2:40AM 23 Fly to La Paz to Lima to Valencia.
Airfare from VLN to LIM and back: $570
Current estimated cost: $1762 + Uyuni & Potosi Tours + food and other transportation
Estimated Budget for Trip: $3000USD
Please comment! Has anyone visited Machu Pichu in late December? Did it go well? Any specific tour agencies you can recommend? I’m worried mostly about the MP and Salt Flat tours and lodging at this point, but other activity suggestions are welcome too! Have you visited the Salar de Uyuni (Salt Flats) in December? How much should I book ahead of time? Any advice on my trip? Suggested hostels/hotels/restaurants?