- Drive your own expedition four-wheel drive vehicle around northern Peru
- Be accompanied by expert guides on two-way radio, travelling in a second vehicle
- Spend time in Huaraz, Leymebamba, Chiclay and Trujillo.
- As featured in the Financial Times 'A 'Top Gear'-style road trip through Peru'
This Peru adventure holiday encompasses the stunning scenery, rich culture, cuisine, and history of Peru. Drive your own expedition 4 x4 vehicle on a 17-day adventure around northern Peru with routes spanning the most spectacular mountain ranges and roads that Peru has to offer. Explore the fascinating yet little visited pre-Inca archaeological sites of northern Peru combined with the snow-capped mountains of the Cordillera Blanca.
Self-driving allows exploration way beyond the normal tourist path and makes for an unforgettable adventure. A guide vehicle will accompany throughout the trip providing communication services, local liaison and back up for driving if needed.
Where does this Peru self-drive tour visit?
The first part of this trip is based in central Peru around the Cordillera Blanca mountain range. Begin your adventure in Lima, and then head north through the coastal desert to Chiquian. Continue to the UNESCO archaeological site at Chavin which dates back to 1200BC. It is a special site with a large central ceremonial square and a system of underground caves and tunnels. From Chavin, head 'off the beaten track', travelling further north to Huascaran National Park, with time at leisure to explore on foot.
Continue onto the Canyon del Pato, the road here is not for the faint-hearted, as it snakes along a path hewn out of sheer rock, over a precipitous gorge and passing through 54 tunnels. Next morning, leave for Cajamarca, a charming Andean town with colonial churches and architecture.
Journey into the Amazonas region, exploring the citadel of Kuelap, the largest ancient stone structure in South America, built in the 6th century AD. It is a fascinating site with over 400 buildings encircled by huge stone walls. It is a keen contender to rival Machu Picchu in stature but not in visitor numbers, it is quite likely no-one else will be there.
From this mystical and mist enshrouded fortress, descend to Leymebamba to visit a superb small museum that houses over 200 Chachapoyan (pre Inca) mummies that were recently discovered in a secret tomb overlooking the Laguna de los Condores.
What happens on a typical day?
Time at the wheel is variable dependent on road conditions and weather etc. However, for each day you should calculate around six hours, there are some rest days and shorter days too. You will have picnic and coffee stops along the way.
The roads are spectacular, and mainly tarmac, although you will be expected to do some off-road driving on some days. It is essential that you have full concentration while driving, and can stop for a break at any time if feeling tired.
HOW MUCH DRIVING IS INVOLVED?
On average six hours per day, which included picnics, coffee breaks and photo stops. Bear in mind it’s not six hours on the M1. You will be on truly epic roads with spectacular scenery. However…If you don’t enjoy driving, this may not be the tour for you.
Will I be accompanied by a guide vehicle throughout?
The guide vehicle will always be at the head of the convoy, and in radio contact at all times. Guides are always available to take over if you feel tired or are not confident with any section of the route.
What are the vehicles like?
The vehicles are Toyota Hilux 4x4 expedition trucks, professionally prepared for this Peru overland adventure. With smooth and powerful 3.0 turbo diesel engines, and a host of special expedition accessories.
This tour is also available on a tailormade basis, please contact the Steppes Travel team to discuss further options and for a detailed itinerary.
How many people per vehicle?
As part of this tour, there will be three vehicles, plus the guide vehicle, with a maximum of four persons per vehicle.
IS THIS SUITABLE FOR SOLO TRAVELLERS?
For solo travellers wanting to join this trip there is the option to drive your own vehicle at a supplement cost, alternatively, you can travel in the lead vehicle with the local guide at no additional cost.
What is the accommodation like in Peru?
It will be an eclectic mix of good city hotels, mountain lodges, historic haciendas, and jungle retreats, all selected for their unique locations and the experiences they provide.
What will the altitude be like in northern Peru?
In northern Peru, Chachapoyas and Leymebamba, the altitude is around 2,300 metres, this will rise to just over 3,000 metres on the road to Cajamarca. In central Peru, Huaraz is at 3,100 metres, whilst during the treks reach altitudes of between 3,800 and 4,600 metres.
For a detailed itinerary or to book your place on this tour, please contact us.