A horse riding holiday may not be the first thought that springs to mind when Peru in South America is mentioned. Walking the Inca Trail is a wonderful experience but surely it pales into insignificance when compared with exploring this historic Sacred Valley of the Incas on magnificent Peruvian Paso smooth gaited horses.
Our ride in Peru called, Luxury Sacred Valley, is one of Unicorn Trails'premier horse riding holidays and it is certainly a horseback holiday with a difference. With your fabulous horses, you will explore areas within the Sacred Valley of the Incas that many tourists never reach as well as visiting the reknowned and poular sites of Machu Picchu, Cusco, Ollantaytambo, Sacsayhuaman etc. Since Hiram Bingham discovered the city of Machu Picchu in 1911 interest in South America, Peru and the Incas has grown exponentially. The Sacred Valley is a long narrow valley, along the River Urubamba, which ends when it meets the citadel of Machu Picchu at its northern most end. It is a treasure chest of Inca culture and history and when you see the amazing terraces on the steep mountain sdes you will begin to appreciate how they were able to farm such large quantities of produce.
So very few people are privileged to experience Peru as you can on this horse riding holiday. Your horses are the best Peruvian Pasos in the business trained by a master. By night you will either enjoy the comfort and luxury of excellent hotels, or when camping near the Inca sites you will be in comfortable camps. By day you will pass through mountain villages where all the residents will watch in awe as you ride by on these beautiful animals, the sounds of their hooves echoing on the cobblestone roads. This exclusive horseback holiday is more than an unforgettable riding experience in the Andes, it combines culture, history and adventure with fine Peruvian cuisine, comfortable mountain camps, and charming hotels.
The city of Cusco, the ancient capital of the Incan Empire, was placed on the World Cultural Heritage List by UNESCO in 1983, and is without a doubt one of the most important destinations in Peru. Your stay in Cusco will give you some time to explore by yourselves. In this wonderful town of terracota pantiled buildings, you will discover narrow cobble streets, a large cathedral, endless churches, interesting architecture and several museums. But don't forget to pass a few hours people watching in the delightful Plaza de Armas - city square.
Wonderful as Cusco is, the highlight of your trip (after the superb riding of course!) will almost certainly be Machu Picchu. It is a fantastic Inca city perched high up in the mountains. As you zig-zag your way up the sharpest of hairpin bends you'll have no problem understanding how it remained hidden for so long. Then when you arrive at the top you will be overwhelmed by the awesome sight before you and will start to understand so much of the Inca lifestyle. You arrive here not by horse but by train, on what is one of the world's most magical train journeys. In order to give you the best experience at Machu Picchu, we arrive early - before most of the tourists.
If you would like to explore any other magical areas of Peru we can of course add extensions to your horse riding holiday in the Sacred Valley. We recommend Lake Titicaca, the world's highest navigable lake; the awesome Colca Canyon where you can watch the condors soaring around you; the stunningly beautiful town of Ariquipa; a flight over the bizarre Nazca Lines etc. Or maybe you'd like to visit some of Peru's neighbours in South America - Chile,Argentina,Ecuador,Brazil. Let us know, and we can arrange tours for you.