Peru Service

Peru Service

Global Trekker Adventure - Grades 9-12

Earn 40 hours of community service while living and working in remote, Andean villages.  Explore the natural and historic wonders of this vast and colorful country. Raft the thrilling Urubamba River. Explore colonial Cusco. Discover the Sacred Valley of the Incas and then make a once in a lifetime journey to the mystical ruins of Machu Picchu.

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21 Days

$6,695

  • June 20th - July 10th
  • Miami, FL (additional fee for international flight)

Day 1-2

Arriving in Cusco, Peru, you will collect your luggage, clear Peruvian customs, and meet your leaders and the rest of your group. After leaving the airport, you’ll enjoy a special city tour of Cusco’s architectural wonders where you’ll learn about the illustrious history of the Inca civilization as well as the traumatic history of Spanish colonialism. You’ll explore Cusco’s cobbled streets and narrow passageways with brightly painted balconies overhead and make stops at the historic Plaza de Armas, the Coricancha, the Inca’s Sun Temple, the Incan fortress of Sacsayhuaman, and the ceremonial pools of Tambo Machay. You’ll also visit the historic Pisac Market where you can practice the Spanish language. That evening, you’ll enjoy dinner in a local restaurant and stroll around the main plaza for views of the Cathedral lit up at night. Waking up excited the next morning, you’ll take part in a day of fun and empowering language instruction. During this inviting workshop, you’ll get a basic sense of conversational Spanish and learn foundational knowledge of Peruvian culture and customs.

Day 3-7

The next day, you’ll embark on a journey into the Sacred Valley of the Incas. The Sacred Valley, known as the Andean highlands of Peru, formed the heart of the Inca Empire. Stretching roughly 60 kilometers, it’s an area of fertile farmland and Spanish colonial villages like Pisac and Ollantaytambo.  The route from Cusco follows a winding mountain road with awe-inspiring views of the stunning canyon below, which was formed by the Urubamba river. You’ll feel the temperature rise as you descend into the warm valley and visit the Inca temple of Chokekillka. That afternoon, you’ll arrive in the town of Pachar where you will spend the next five days working with families to make improvements to their homes, to the community school, or to the community garden. The Pachar community, part of the greater Sacred Valley community, is home to the world’s most direct descendants of the Inca Empire.

Day 8

The Urubamba River is the perfect place to experience a rewarding taste of Andean whitewater. After a briefing on safety and rafting techniques by your professional river guides, you will set out on your whitewater adventure, which will take you through the fun Class III rapids of the Sacred Valley.

Day 9-12

Your stunning four-day trek to Machu Picchu will begin in Mollepata. You will travel through snow-capped mountains, ancient ruins, tropical rain forests, and tiny villages. The Salkantay trail is not “The Inca Trail”, but is one of the lesser travelled, more traditional Inca trails to Machu Picchu. The trek crosses the Salkantay Pass at 4600m, descends into the cloud forest and passes the Inca ruins Llactapata, with a view of Machu Picchu.. On the trail, the group will have the aid of mules, helping them to carry their belongings while hiking. These mules are treated with love and care, and will be alongside the hikers for the whole day. This will allow the group to travel lighter and faster along the trail, and to adjust to the high altitude of the Andes. 

After you finish your spectacular trek, you will board a train for a short ride to Aguas Calientes, the closest access point to Machu Picchu.

Day 13

Arriving at the entrance to Machu Picchu by 6:00am, you’ll witness a breathtaking sunrise at the ruins. Machu Picchu, which means “old peak” in Quechua, is Peru’s most prominent symbol of its pre-colonial past. Never discovered by the Spanish Conquistadores, this Lost City of the Incas is an authentic glimpse into the past. You’ll explore these extraordinary ruins and visit the industrial area, the Temple of the Sun, the Royal Tomb, ceremonial fountains and baths, and the Sacred Plazas. Finally, you’ll hike to the summit of Huayna Picchu (Young Peak) for a birds-eye view of the ruins.

Day 14

Following your experience at Machu Picchu, you will spend one last day in Cusco to volunteer with a local school community.  You will spend the day at a non-profit school for underprivileged children in Cusco. You will make improvements to the school, teach English through arts and crafts and a number of games. It will be a great day for the group to get to know the students, practice your Spanish, and have a ton of fun.

Day 15-18

Next, you and your group will travel to Lake Titicaca. You will journey across the Andean Altiplano to Lake Titicaca via private vehicle. You will make several stops along the way including La Raya, the highest pass on the route between Cusco and Puno, perched at an exhilarating 14,222 feet above sea level. Beautiful landscapes await you; you’ll see many of the animals that are symbolic of the Andes including llamas, alpacas and vicunas. This unique region is situated between the Quechua and Aymara cultures. It’s also a composite of two terrains: the more verdant Quechua valleys and rivers and the dry and arid Altiplano. You will  arrive early in the evening in Llachón, located on the Capachica Peninsula of Lake Titicaca.

Over the next few days, you will work alongside community members of Santa Mara. You will help with community needs, whether it’s painting classrooms, restoring ceilings of school buildings, putting in new windows, or other infrastructure projects. You will have a lot of time to interact with the community and learn about their way of life, their agriculture, their fishing techniquest, the way they produce their intricate textiles, and more.

Day 19-21

You will spend your last full day in the area kayaking to Taquile Islands and visiting the Uros Islands. You’ll load up and head southeast on Lake Titicaca from the beach in Llachón. Nearly three hours of paddling on the majestic blue waters will take you across to Taquile Island. About 1,700 people, known as Taquileños, live on this distinctive island. They run their society based on community collectivism and on the Inca moral code “ama sua, ama llulla, ama qhilla” (Quechua: do not steal, do not lie, do not be lazy). After lunch, you’ll continue by boat to the Uros Islands. The Uros began their unusual floating existence centuries ago in an effort to isolate themselves from the Colla and Inca tribes. Sadly, the Uros language has died out, and today the islanders speak Aymara due to intermarriage with Aymara-speaking clans. Today about 300 families live on floating islands built from a local type of reed called “Totora.” Their homes and boats are also made of “Totora.” Although the Uros people maintain a very traditional lifestyle, they do not reject technology as one might think. Many families take advantage of electricity from solar panels, which were a gift from ex-President Fujimori. After getting off the lake in the afternoon, you will transfer to Puno and celebrate your time together with a Peruvian Banquet!

You will bid the islands farewell and travel back to the bustling city of Lima. From there, you will head to the airport and fly back to Miami. Though it will be sad to say goodbye to your new friends, the experiences you’ve shared will inevitably create friendships for years to come!

Day 1-2

Arriving in Cusco, Peru, you will collect your luggage, clear Peruvian customs, and meet your leaders and the rest of your group. After leaving the airport, you’ll enjoy a special city tour of Cusco’s architectural wonders where you’ll learn about the illustrious history of the Inca civilization as well as the traumatic history of Spanish colonialism. You’ll explore Cusco’s cobbled streets and narrow passageways with brightly painted balconies overhead and make stops at the historic Plaza de Armas, the Coricancha, the Inca’s Sun Temple, the Incan fortress of Sacsayhuaman, and the ceremonial pools of Tambo Machay. You’ll also visit the historic Pisac Market where you can practice the Spanish language. That evening, you’ll enjoy dinner in a local restaurant and stroll around the main plaza for views of the Cathedral lit up at night. Waking up excited the next morning, you’ll take part in a day of fun and empowering language instruction. During this inviting workshop, you’ll get a basic sense of conversational Spanish and learn foundational knowledge of Peruvian culture and customs.

Day 3-7

The next day, you’ll embark on a journey into the Sacred Valley of the Incas. The Sacred Valley, known as the Andean highlands of Peru, formed the heart of the Inca Empire. Stretching roughly 60 kilometers, it’s an area of fertile farmland and Spanish colonial villages like Pisac and Ollantaytambo.  The route from Cusco follows a winding mountain road with awe-inspiring views of the stunning canyon below, which was formed by the Urubamba river. You’ll feel the temperature rise as you descend into the warm valley and visit the Inca temple of Chokekillka. That afternoon, you’ll arrive in the town of Pachar where you will spend the next five days working with families to make improvements to their homes, to the community school, or to the community garden. The Pachar community, part of the greater Sacred Valley community, is home to the world’s most direct descendants of the Inca Empire.

Day 8

The Urubamba River is the perfect place to experience a rewarding taste of Andean whitewater. After a briefing on safety and rafting techniques by your professional river guides, you will set out on your whitewater adventure, which will take you through the fun Class III rapids of the Sacred Valley.

Day 9-12

Your stunning four-day trek to Machu Picchu will begin in Mollepata. You will travel through snow-capped mountains, ancient ruins, tropical rain forests, and tiny villages. The Salkantay trail is not “The Inca Trail”, but is one of the lesser travelled, more traditional Inca trails to Machu Picchu. The trek crosses the Salkantay Pass at 4600m, descends into the cloud forest and passes the Inca ruins Llactapata, with a view of Machu Picchu.. On the trail, the group will have the aid of mules, helping them to carry their belongings while hiking. These mules are treated with love and care, and will be alongside the hikers for the whole day. This will allow the group to travel lighter and faster along the trail, and to adjust to the high altitude of the Andes. 

After you finish your spectacular trek, you will board a train for a short ride to Aguas Calientes, the closest access point to Machu Picchu.

Day 13

Arriving at the entrance to Machu Picchu by 6:00am, you’ll witness a breathtaking sunrise at the ruins. Machu Picchu, which means “old peak” in Quechua, is Peru’s most prominent symbol of its pre-colonial past. Never discovered by the Spanish Conquistadores, this Lost City of the Incas is an authentic glimpse into the past. You’ll explore these extraordinary ruins and visit the industrial area, the Temple of the Sun, the Royal Tomb, ceremonial fountains and baths, and the Sacred Plazas. Finally, you’ll hike to the summit of Huayna Picchu (Young Peak) for a birds-eye view of the ruins.

Day 14

Following your experience at Machu Picchu, you will spend one last day in Cusco to volunteer with a local school community.  You will spend the day at a non-profit school for underprivileged children in Cusco. You will make improvements to the school, teach English through arts and crafts and a number of games. It will be a great day for the group to get to know the students, practice your Spanish, and have a ton of fun.

Day 15-18

Next, you and your group will travel to Lake Titicaca. You will journey across the Andean Altiplano to Lake Titicaca via private vehicle. You will make several stops along the way including La Raya, the highest pass on the route between Cusco and Puno, perched at an exhilarating 14,222 feet above sea level. Beautiful landscapes await you; you’ll see many of the animals that are symbolic of the Andes including llamas, alpacas and vicunas. This unique region is situated between the Quechua and Aymara cultures. It’s also a composite of two terrains: the more verdant Quechua valleys and rivers and the dry and arid Altiplano. You will  arrive early in the evening in Llachón, located on the Capachica Peninsula of Lake Titicaca.

Over the next few days, you will work alongside community members of Santa Mara. You will help with community needs, whether it’s painting classrooms, restoring ceilings of school buildings, putting in new windows, or other infrastructure projects. You will have a lot of time to interact with the community and learn about their way of life, their agriculture, their fishing techniquest, the way they produce their intricate textiles, and more.

Day 19-21

You will spend your last full day in the area kayaking to Taquile Islands and visiting the Uros Islands. You’ll load up and head southeast on Lake Titicaca from the beach in Llachón. Nearly three hours of paddling on the majestic blue waters will take you across to Taquile Island. About 1,700 people, known as Taquileños, live on this distinctive island. They run their society based on community collectivism and on the Inca moral code “ama sua, ama llulla, ama qhilla” (Quechua: do not steal, do not lie, do not be lazy). After lunch, you’ll continue by boat to the Uros Islands. The Uros began their unusual floating existence centuries ago in an effort to isolate themselves from the Colla and Inca tribes. Sadly, the Uros language has died out, and today the islanders speak Aymara due to intermarriage with Aymara-speaking clans. Today about 300 families live on floating islands built from a local type of reed called “Totora.” Their homes and boats are also made of “Totora.” Although the Uros people maintain a very traditional lifestyle, they do not reject technology as one might think. Many families take advantage of electricity from solar panels, which were a gift from ex-President Fujimori. After getting off the lake in the afternoon, you will transfer to Puno and celebrate your time together with a Peruvian Banquet!

You will bid the islands farewell and travel back to the bustling city of Lima. From there, you will head to the airport and fly back to Miami. Though it will be sad to say goodbye to your new friends, the experiences you’ve shared will inevitably create friendships for years to come!

The Peru service trip led by Wilderness Adventures was the most amazing experience of my life. One of the many stories I have is when our group was helping out at a small school in the Sacred Valley. It was after we had finished our work for the day and the sun was starting to set. A few kids from the school stayed later and we're playing some soccer. I have never been a person who is good at sports and I usually feel self conscious about playing sports in front of strangers.

However, the leaders on my trip created an environment where I felt comfortable and after one week we all became very close. Everyone began joining in the game and it was incredible. We were all screaming in Spanish and sprinting up and down the field. It almost felt like we were
competing in the World Cup. Soon the sun set and it was totally dark. You couldn't see past three feet in front of you. I felt sad that game was over but then someone pulled out their headlamp.

The game continued and as I looked around it was amazing to see that I could connect with kids from a different country who didnt speak my language. After a while the kids began to filter off to go to dinner. Eventually we headed over to diner also with huge smiles on our faces. This was one of my favorite experiences because I was so surprised and in awe of it. I will definitely never forget this trip.

Emma Croll, Peru Service 2016

The Wilderness Adventures trip to Peru was an amazing experience! It was the best decision I've made. It was the perfect balance of volunteering, hard work, having fun, seeing amazing places and views, and meeting new people. I always felt safe, very comfortable, and in good hands. The trip-leaders were helpful and enthusiastic and they helped to make the trip special. The Salkantay trek to Machu Picchu was the coolest thing I have ever done. It was a lot of fun camping in different places and hiking across the Andes. Getting to the top of the Salkantay pass and to the top of Machu Picchu mountain was an amazing accomplishment and experience. Seeing one of the seven wonders of the world is something I will never forget. I had never been white water rafting before, and rafting on the Urubamba River with class II and III rapids was super fun. Volunteering at each school was a great experience. I loved making a difference and being able to play with the kids and learn about them and the culture. Overall I had an amazing time and I would definitely do something like this again. I will carry the memories I made on this trip with me forever.

Mamie Ziegler, Peru Service 2016