11-Day Trip Plan - (down trip plan)
This trip is for those who wish to explore their own inner spiritual journey, as well as, make an authentic connection with an ancient spiritual culture. You will experience local life and a part of the region that has not changed much in 500 years. We will explore Inca spirituality as we visit ancient Inca sites and trek off-the-beaten-path through the high Andes.
Our journey begins with an Inca spiritual teaching about Munay (Love) and a group blessing ceremony by a Q'ero Shaman. The Shaman will also provide each participant a personal blessing for their intentions on this journey. Each day, we will explore meditation, receive a personal Primordial Sound Mantra, and learn about the Seven Spiritual Laws of Yoga. Our guide, Saul, will continue to provide us with Inca spiritual education, philosophy, and history. This experience is a unique blend of spiritual teachings that provide you tools to use for a lifetime long after this trip.
Ayni is an Inca word that represents the grace of giving and receiving and is one of the Seven Spiritual Laws of Yoga. This trip represents the spirit of Ayni through our volunteer outreach, which includes two specific projects, plus outreach along our trek.
We’ll have unique and meaningful interactions with the local people, experience the amazing citadel of Machu Picchu, explore meditation and Inca ceremony, visit various Inca archaeological sites, hike, and mountain bike, all while giving back to the communities of the region.
What will we do?
One of our group projects will be sponsoring a special Inca race for children living in smaller community outside Ollantaytambo. In Inca times, the chasquis (porters) used to run a race to Machu Picchu. But with tourism taking over the Royal Inca Trail, that tradition has been lost. Project Inti is providing the means to honor this ancient tradition through a 10K race surrounding Ollantaytambo. Winners of the race will receive cash awards for their school to buy much needed school supplies (determined by the school's teaching staff). We may also leave behind Leave No Trace education so that this generation continues to preserve Pachamama (Mother Earth).
From there, we’ll work our way towards the Lares trek where we will provide aid and outreach to farmers and villagers along the way, and do our next special project in the small village of Waca Wasi . Here we will provide basic education on washing hands and disease prevention, plus distribute aid to children at the school.
We begin our trek at the Lares hot springs and prepare for our trekking journey. The approximate 45+ km (28 miles) Lares cultural trek (including bike tour) offers spectacular scenery and a more intimate experience inside the lives of rural Quechuan life. Passing through points along the way at 13,000 feet to 15,000 feet we’ll see little children, farmers, and textile weavers, beautiful potato fields, alpaca herds, and maybe even some chinchillas. Many of these villages produce some of the finest textiles, so be sure to bring a little extra cash so you can purchase some of these extraordinary pieces at bargain prices.
Toward the end of the Lares trek, we visit a local women's textile co-op, then bike down to the town of Ollantaytambo for an afternoon of rest and free time. You have the option to participate in a yoga massage from our leader, Angie! We may also connect with a nearby local community to plant trees and continue our pachamama conservation efforts. Our next day takes us on a Sacred Valley tour where we will have special meditation time at one of the Inca sites.
Then we prepare for our trip to Machu Picchu, where we spend quality time exploring this amazing wonder of the world, arriving early so that we can grab a quiet moment as a group before the day unfolds with more visitors. We'll hike up to Huayna Picchu, the backdrop of the citadel for a special view of Machu Picchu, and then make our way by train back to Ollantaytambo at the end of the day.
Our journey takes us on to Puno and Lake Titicaca where we will do three island tours: Uros (floating reed islands), Amantani with an overnight homestay in a local home, and Taquile with its unique traditions. Our stay on Amantani falls on the evening of the full moon, so we will hike up to an Inca site to watch the sunset and the full moon rise. We will have a special ceremony honoring the Divine Feminine energy of the moon and Mother Earth. Our trip concludes back in Puno with a special evening celebration dinner.