In 1911 when Hiram Bingham revealed the lost Inca fortress to the world, Peru emerged as a new destination for travel in South America. The fort was called Machu Picchu, and for years the largely untouched Inca site was abandoned, disappearing from the Amazon Forest until Hiram Bingham discovered the site with his expedition team. Over the next 100 years, many other Inca sites were reclaimed from the Forest including the Choquequirao fortress and Winay Winya. In addition to this extraordinary site, visitors to Peru can also enjoy the sites of the Inca Pisac, Ollantaytambo and the Colonial City of Cusco – which are like the lively Inca architectural museums.
If you are thinking about Peruvian luxury tours in the coming year and are considering taking advantage of Peru’s best hospitality, we have compiled a list of some of the best highlights, and completes the things you need to know.
Peru offers a large number of luxury hotels, from traditional colonial hotels to contemporary style boutique accommodation. The best hotel is located close to major tourist attractions such as Machu Picchu, Cusco, and the Sacred Valley. In Cusco, we recommend that you consider the Monasterio Hotel, which was originally built in 1595 on the site of the Inca Amaru Qhala palace. Another popular choice is the very private hotel in La Casona – 11 suite hotels built around a traditional inner courtyard, and a popular choice for the rich and famous. Other prominent hotels in Cusco include the Libertador Hotel and Casa Cartagena, an ultra-modern hotel located in a colonial house.
Of course no luxury trip to Peru is complete without a visit to Machu Picchu, and the best way to travel is by Hiram Bingham Luxury Train. This luxury service, operated by Orient Express Group, is one of the best train trips in South America. Arranged like the Pullman Train of the 1920s in the past, with Royal Blue features and comfortable seating is an unforgettable experience. These services include lunch on the way out, dinner 4 menus on the way home, a fully stocked bar, plus lunch at the Sanctuary Lodge Hotel next to Machu Picchu. It is important to note that the Hiram Bingham Service does not run on Sundays.
There are only a handful of luxurious Machu Picchu Hotels, and the Sanctuary Lodge Hotel is the only hotel located in the fort, with the rest of the hotel located on the Vilcabamba Valley floor in the small town of Aguas Calientes. The Sanctuary Lodge Hotel is located just a few meters from the entrance to Machu Picchu (and interestingly it doesn’t have a view of the fort), and is perfect for visitors who want to have the best access to the site. An excellent choice for waking up in the morning, those who want to visit Machu Picchu before the crowds come or novice photographers who want the perfect photo in the morning. An alternative hotel worth considering is the beautiful Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel by the highly successful Peruvian luxury hotel chain – Inkaterra. Set on 11 hectares of cloud forest and displaying the largest private Orchid collection in South America, natural walks on the premises, and their own tea and coffee plantations, the Puebo hotel is more than just a place to sleep.
If on your luxury tour to Peru you hope to spend a little time relaxing away from the hustle and bustle of the city then a few nights in the Sacred Valley (only 1 hour from Cusco) are a popular choice. The Sacred Valley is a quiet area in Peru and offers several high-level luxury hideouts, and is located several hundred feet lower than Cusco, great for adjusting to height. There are some very good choices, but one of the most prominent hotels is the Sol y Luna hotel which is located just outside Urubamba. Located in large, beautiful and well-maintained gardens, the hotel Sol y Luna offers guests a choice of charming individual Casitas and Luxury Suites. The hotel also has Wayra, a farm located at the lower end of the complex, and offers guests high quality guided horse riding tours through the Sacred Valley. Sol y Luna also operates a half-day quad biking tour from Wayra, exploring further into the mystical and rarely visited Inca ruins in Moray.
If you are considering a luxury Peru tour someday, we hope that some of these instructions will help you get the most out of your trip. Peru is an amazing country with extraordinary history, ancient Inca ruins and many other fantastic attractions. Make sure that Peru is on the list of countries you must visit – this is truly a luxury destination not to be missed.