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“Great group of people, customer and experience focused” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Alpaca Expeditions Day Tours

Alpaca Expeditions Day Tours
Calle Heladeros 157, Office 24 - 25 2nd floor | Calle Lucrepata L-1 Tahuantinsuyo, Cusco 5174, Peru
+51 84 254278
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Ranked #1 of 341 Activities in Cusco
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Owner description: Alpaca Expeditions is an experienced culture and adventure travel company that creates customized tours for travelers visiting Peru. We will work with you to create the trip of a lifetime, whether you dream of trekking through the Andes on a 4 day climb to the lost city of the Incas or conquering the heights of Macchu Picchu through the indulgence of a luxurious train, let us make all your dreams come true.
Allen, Texas
Top Contributor
93 reviews 93 reviews
23 attraction reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
“Great group of people, customer and experience focused”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 30, 2013

Just returned from a fabulous time in Cuzco. After much research, my husband decided on Alpaca Expeditions. Unfortunately, by the time he decided, the passes for the Inca Trail were sold out. We decided to do an alternative hike to Huchuy Quosqo. Our driver Adrian, guide Isaac and porter Iban met us on time at our hotel. We drove to the trailhead and hiked for about a total of 14 kilometers that day. The terrain, plants, villages and encounters with mountain people and animals was priceless. Our approach to the Huchuy Quosco ruins was fantastic. There is a grassy trail and steps to the ruins area which made you feel like you were making a discovery as you saw the ruins for the first time.
Our guide Isaac was very attentive and informative. Besides being a guide for many years, he also grew up in the Andes, so his knowledge and experience gave us a quite an education. We ended our hike in Lamay, drove to Ollantaytambo for dinner and then a train to Aguas Calientes. The next day Isaac was our guide for 2 hours at Macchu Picchu as well. He gave us great information to help us understand the history of the Inca Empire.
Our last day we booked a private tour to Chincero and Maras Moray. Our driver was Adrian and our guide was Isaac again. They again met us on time at our hotel and made sure we were back in time to transfer to the airport.
Also, one day we did a Sacred Valley tour. Alpaca handled having us join a group tour. We were met at our hotel by Abel and escorted to the Plaza de Armas to join the group. The whole experience was seamless.
From emails with Bonnie to in person contact with Raul and interactions with Isaac, Iban, Abel and other staff, the whole experience with Alpaca was great.

Visited October 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Barnsley, United Kingdom
2 reviews
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“The Green Machines”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 26, 2013

I recently went on a 4 day Inca Trek with Alpaca. It was an unforgettable experience that I would recommend to anyone.

The porters were excellent, really well organised and much more of a unit than their rivals seemed to be. They always had a bowl of hot water and a towel waiting for us at each camp site to freshen up after the hike, whch was a nice touch.

I went expecting to put up with poor quality food rattled together in a hurry, but each meal was very good. If anything there was too much food. The tents were good quality too.

Our guide was a bit of a character (Ruben Sandwich) who's personality made things much more interesting than those who just regurgitate facts.

Highly recommend Alpaca Expeditions.

Visited October 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Excellence Personified- Alpaca does it all!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 24, 2013

I always wait a few months before writing a review, as it takes me some time to reflect before sharing. Let me start by saying that this is the type of professional business one would expect from a former porter/guide. All aspects have been considered, and no detail is too small. I first realized this when I started researching and had a few Skype calls with Raul to iron out the details. My girlfriend and I started on the 5 day Salkantay Trek to Macchu Picchu and followed with a 5 day trek through Ausangate.

Salkantay Trek:
Our guide, Ephriam, was incredible. He has a lot of enthusiasm and a great deal of knowledge about the trek itself. Many guides know the Inca history, and he definitely gave us that back story, but learning about the flora and fauna of the area was more impressive to me. We're also big into geology and cartography, so his knowledge of the surrounding landscape was a real bonus. Another great bonus is that Alpaca employs many guides that are local Quechua speakers, as are many porters and chefs. Learning the difference between the Spanish and Quechuan words for things really helped me understand the culture. Our chef Mario was incredible!! Or shall I say, "al punto, papi!" Calories are much needed when trekking this much each day, and Mario made sure we had more than enough to eat. A major draw of going with Alpaca over other tour groups is the night in Llaqtapata. Yes, it's a nice uphill climb on your 3rd day, but the views are second to none. I wont write much about Machu Picchu, as there isn't much that hasn't already been written... It does not disappoint! Nor does Huayna Picchu! It was a nice climb to the top, and once again, incredible views!

Ausangate Trek:
As much as I enjoyed Machu Picchu, I much prefer the silence and solitude of high altitude mountain trails. If this sounds like you, do not hesitate to book this trek. I can't believe more haven't done this one and written about it! On days 2,3, and 4 my eyes took in some of the most beautiful landscapes this earth has to offer. We also got to see a group of the elusive vicuna on day 4, the smaller wild cousin of the llama and alpaca. There are four high passes around 16,000ft that took us through snow capped peaks, glowing blue glacial lakes, painted hills of erosion and sediment, and gorgeous yellow valleys with grazing alpacas.

Jose was the perfect guide, and I would rate him 10 stars for his professionalism and knowledge of the area. It was only my girlfriend and I on this trek, and we were worried we wouldn't have enough time to ourselves on the trail. This was never a problem, as Jose always gave us a lot of great info on the area and then would walk behind or in front for a while to give us our space. He always knew if we wanted our picture taken, and would be there for the perfect postcard shot. I can't say enough great things about Jose as a guide.

Alpaca Expeditions is #1 on Trip Advisor for a reason. If you're on the fence about who to book with, don't look elsewhere.

Visited July 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Barnsley, United Kingdom
2 reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Ruben Sandwich”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 24, 2013

I recently completed a 4-day Inca Trek with Alpaca with 2 other friends. An amazing experience that none of us will forget.

Pros+
* Porters were excellent - The porters, all Quechua speakers, did an excellent job of carting our tackle up and down the mountains sides and put a pace on that would put Mo Farah to shame.
* Food was delicious - Our chef Leonardo was a gem. The standard of food was amazing.
* Guide - Ruben Sandwich as he liked to call himself was a funny bloke with a genuine passion for the area and Inca history. He, like the porters, was from the region. Liked his grande tetas which made good conversation. (talking point for anyone who gets him as their guide)
* Equipment - The tents and sleeping bags were top quality.
* Treatment of staff - The staff were well looked after and all were properly attired/equiped for the trek. In fact, their North Face jackets were better than ours!

Cons-
* Could have been a little more organised on day 4 - we seemed to be hanging around an awful lot and didn't have our usual hot water and soap to give the face a rinse and freshen up.
* Have some evening entertainment - most of the nights we were in bed for 7-8pm. Some form of entertainment/activity would be nice although appreciate there's only so much you can do!

Improvements
* Quantity of food - Although the standard of the food was excellent, I think the quantity could be tweaked a little. We had 3 big buffets a day which was more than anyone could eat. I would say keep the breakfast and lunch as they are as you need the fuel but have less on the evening when you're winding down and don't need the same quantity.

Visited October 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Excellence Beyond Description--You Have to Do It to Believe It”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 23, 2013

Nearly 3 weeks have passed, and I am still at a loss for words to describe the absolutely stunning experience we had with Alpaca Expeditions throughout the time we spent in one of the most beautiful countries on earth. From the two day Inca Trail to a tour of the Sacred Valley to long distance organizing for us to tour Ica, Islas Bellestas, and Nazca Lines, our experience of Peru would not have been the same without the totally customer-focused service from Raul our guide, Bonnie our advisor and correspondent, and Raul our porter. This is my first EVER review on Tripadvisor after having lurked here for ages for just one simple reason: Alpaca Expeditions deserves every accolade heaped on it on the site, and much much more.

Although I have traveled extensively, I have never been south of the United States, not even to Mexico. So planning for my first trip into South America with 7 other friends—all at different level of fitness and travel savviness—was a bit nerve-racking. However, from our very first interaction with Alpaca Expeditions, we were positive that we have landed the right outfit for our need. Bonnie responded to every single email request promptly, and with answers to every question and sub question we have. In fact, no request we made was ever too crazy, and we did make constant changes to our Sacred Valley itinerary. In fact, Bonnie, our hats are off to you for your patience and ingenuity in getting us to all the places we wanted to see.

Our giddiness at having found THE tour continues with our guide, Raul, who is also the brainchild behind Alpaca Expeditions. It takes dedication, perseverance, and passion to make a one-year old company into the powerhouse of the Inca Trail, and Raul has it in spades. As an aside, Raul told me to call him at 3am if we should have any issue in Lima on a trip he helped us organize. As for passion, if the reviews on Tripadvisor are indications, then each and every guide from Alpaca Expeditions is passionate about their history, their culture, and their legacy. Raul taught us so much about Incan history and about the Andean people that I felt like we were not only taking a trip, we were getting a lesson of an amazing land that no previous book or DVDs I have watched had come to match. And getting back to basics, he fed us well. When other 2-day Incan trailers were enjoying their sandwiches and salads, we ate rice and yucca and breaded chicken, in addition to hot cocoa tea. Oh, and Raul even graced our trip with Raul II, our ever gentle and smiling porter who left us in the dust as he carried our lunch, our excess clothes, and additional water. Bonnie kept saying to us throughout her emails—don’t worry about anything, we just want you to relax and just enjoy. I have heard that from many people before but Alpaca Expeditions truly took their motto seriously. And believe me, if you had seen our group, you’d know how much we needed gentle Raul.

I swear that Raul must have a nose for weather. After a great day of hiking—even the weather cooperated with being overcast and a bit cool, we got to Intipunku with a sinking feeling. This is where Incan hikers are supposed to get their first sight of Machu Picchu. Instead, we were greeted with an overwhelmingly dense fog that threatened never to lift, coupled with that drizzle that my hometown of Seattle is famous for. No Machu Picchu anywhere. We were crestfallen. Instead of allowing us to commiserate with others who were congregating at the Sun Gate, Raul hurried us along. As we made our way down the hill towards Machu Picchu, the fog continued to play tricks upon us. It lightened up to show the base of Machu Picchu, but before we can point it out to our companions or had a chance to ooh and aah, it hurried back in as if to jealously guard a secret from the Spanish invaders. Have you ever waited for the fog to lift on something you have waited years to see? The next 15 minutes was an eternity while we watched the fog play hike and seek with our emotions, until finally, it made a final decision. It LIFTED—hooray, to reveal a breathtaking vista below us. Our guide had indeed hurried us down to the next observation spot so that we can see Machu Picchu in all its glory. To cap it off, he led us into the parameter of Machu Picchu after all the tourists have called it a day. The amazing feeling of being able to observe this very spiritual place in silence is just indescribable.

The next day, Raul ordered up gorgeous weather for our official tour of Machu Picchu. It was more than perfect. It was the fulfillment of a dream.

We will be back for the 4-day trail. We hope our friends will be there waiting for us.

Visited September 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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