Machu Travel Peru did an awesome job of ensuring my family had a wonderful, SAFE, trip to Peru!! We have never been to S. America, and were skeptical of traveling on a whim. Jhonatan Huacac guided us by email all the way from setting up the trip to having the best vacation of our lives. We traveled with my wife and three teenage children (12-14-16) mid-June, which seemed to be the best for weather and tourist density. Our package was the Machu Pichu and Lake Titicaca tour. We decided to travel a day early and spend an extra day in Lima (mistake). We should have spent the extra day in Cusco. Machu Travel Peru arranged all transfers, meetings, tickets and hotels without a hitch. We were always met and guided to the next adventure.
The one thing we loved about Machu Travel Peru was the feeling of being on an individual adventure, and not a "tagged sheep" in one of the larger Gate 1-Travel tour groups that we saw in Peru. There was a personal touch to Machu Travel Peru, almost as if your brother or sister was showing you around their home town...did I saw we felt safe the entire time!
Our trip started by flying into Lima, where we were met at 2 AM by Carlos and Joel...funny guys who literally know everybody at the Airport...security, gate agents, etc. Our transfer in and out of Lima was like being a rock star. We explored Lima on Day 1 by ourselves using Hotel Taxis (the JW Marriott was first rate!). Day two was handled by Lima Vision Bus Tours...this was one "shared tour" during the whole trip. Day 3 we flew to Cusco and was met by Jhonatan and his driver....he escorted us to the JW Marriott in Cusco and received a full briefing on the next 7 days. Jhonatan left no stone unturned on his briefing and we were fully prepared!
Highlights of the rest of the trip: Personal tours by Rosa in Cusco and Esmeralda in Machu Pichu were FIRST RATE! Both women were outstanding in knowledge and English Language. These were private tours by passionate women who gave my family the best view of Peru that you only read about in books: Inca Ruins, Alpaca farms, city tours...unbelievable. Ask for them! We tipped them and the drivers well since they went out of their way to show us things not on the itinerary, again remember the comment about your brother or sister giving you a tour!! Out trip to Puno was the gem of the trip...Lake Titicaca and the Uros islands were amazing. The boat trip to Taquille Island and spending the day and lunch with a native Peruvian are memories that my I-Phone kids actually turned their phone off for.
I could write a book on the other pluses of the trip. Things I would advise you on:
1) Use Machu Travel Peru...I am a believer.
2) Spend less time in Lima, more time in Cusco. Stay at the 5-star hotels...good sleep (you'll need it), great food and a piece of comfort at the end of a long tiring day.
3) Spend two-days in Aguas Calientes & Machu Pichu. We climbed Wayna Pichu as part of the Machu Pichu tour and were hot, smelly and exhausted at the end of the day...and caught the train back to Cusco that night (same day). It was almost too much for the kids!
4) We were not expecting a 10-hour bus trip from Cusco to Puno...it was magnificent. You get to see Peru outside of the tourist cities an see some amazing culture...first rate bus, outstanding stop at a restaurant in the Andes at 12,000 feet....again, my I-phone kids loved it.
5) Did not expect the 2-hour boat ride to Tequille Island on Lake Titicaca....a wonderful experience that my kids talk about as much as Machu Pichu.
I would be delighted to answer any questions for you in regards to our Family Vacation with Machu Travel Peru. It was not cheap, but the memories and experiences were worth every penny....and I feel like I have a new family in Peru with Jhonatan, Rosa, Esmeralda and the rest of their team.
Good luck and have fun!
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