Dear Reader, I'm very excited today to share the full Peruvian itinerary that we've been working so hard on for my new travel business called Experiential Traveller. I hope that you think that it's as exciting as we do! As I mentioned just before Christmas, this small group tour which will be headed up by me will encompass the best of Peruvian food from high end to street food. It is intensely foodie and for people that live to eat and we have anchored it around the renowned Mistura food festival in September, 2017!
The response so far has been nothing short of amazing. So much so that we have already half sold out of places on this tour!!! SQUEAAAL! We've made sure to include so many details so that you don't have to worry about anything. Some of the highlights include dinner at Central (the number 4 restaurant in the world), having a Peruvian chef to accompany us during the Lima portions to give us a better understanding of Peruvian food, VIP entry to Mistura food festival, trying the intriguing and delicious fusion cuisines in Peru and of course Macchu Picchu! Drinks, amazing meals, stunning hotels, wifi/sim card, tips and all internal transfers are all included. All you have to do is book and arrive there and the service starts from when I pick you up from the airport!
Click here to download the pdf, take a look at the various packages on offer or read on to see all of delicious offerings on our unique and wonderful foodie journey. I really hope you can come along!
Click here to download a pdf of the full itinerary, take a look at the various packages on offer or read on to see all of delicious offerings on our unique and wonderful foodie journey. I really hope you can come along!
Lots of love,
DAY 1 LIMA
Arrival at the Jorge Chavez International Airport, located in Callao, Lima's main seaport. Upon arrival, be met at the airport by Lorraine Elliott and transfer to Atemporal Hotelito in Miraflores.
DAY 2 LIMA
Breakfast at hotel included. In the morning, transfer to the gastronomic fair MISTURA. This day is reserved for government authorities and specials guests. This is the 10th year for the festival run by APEGA (Peruvian Society of Gastronomy). The name MISTURA comes from the old mixers that combined aromas and reflects Peruvians as people - a mix of races, colours, flavours and aromas. Local and international chefs, farmers, artisans, street food vendors, restaurants, cacao, coffee and Pisco’s producers join over a space of 10 days to celebrate the great diversity and gastronomy. Lunch is included in different sectors of the venue to enable you to have the chance to taste and experience the large variety of Peruvian cuisine on offer. We will have local Peruvian chef Gonzalo Carbajal who will join us for the whole Lima portion of the program and he will give us an even deeper insight into Peruvian cuisine.
Dinner this evening is at the stunning Maido by Mitsuharu, ranked Nº 2 in the list of the Latin America’s 50 Best Restaurants and Nº 13 in the list of San Pellegrino's World’s Best Restaurants. Tonight, you will have the Nikkei Experience. For the Chef Mitsuharu life is movement. Cuisines are constantly being redefined, their identities enriched by an intense inter-cultural exchange which has formed the basis of all civilisation but particularly in Peru. The fireplace is where bloodlines merge, where people come to sing, where dialogue is fostered, the elements meet and opposites attract. This is called Nikkei Cuisine, a cuisine combining Peruvian and Japanese food in one.
DAY 3 LIMA
Breakfast at hotel included. Mid-morning, another visit to MISTURA to continue exploring the several areas of Peruvian gastronomy but this time you will will have the chance to share the fair with locals. You can also participate in different conferences about Peruvian and international cuisines should you wish. Lunch is also included in different sections of the event. This is flexible depending on what the group wants.
In the afternoon, visit Larco Museum, a world-class museum, beautifully displaying awesome pre-Inca artifacts, including pottery, gold, and silver collected throughout Peru which will give you an insight into the many civilisations in this diverse country. Afterwards, tour the historic centre of Lima beginning with some of Lima's Republican highlights: Museum of Art, Miguel Grau monument, Palace of Justice, and Plaza San Martin. Then, a guided tour to the Cathedral located in the Main Plaza of Lima.
That evening, cocktail and dinner at Casa Aliaga, a very rare and unique experience and a house usually reserved for government officials, foreign diplomats and VIPs. After the founding of Lima on January 18th, 1535, Captain Jerónimo de Aliaga y Ramírez received a colonial house in the elegant area near the house of Francisco Pizarro, the Spanish Conqueror, (today the Government Palace). Ever since then the Aliaga family and their descendants have lived in the house, thus making it the oldest dwelling in the Americas that has been home to the same family for 17 generations. As you wander through the beautiful rooms of this old mansion one can enjoy both the Colonial and Republican history of the city of Lima. You can try Pisco Sour the national drink but also Algarrobina (a Peruvian drink known as Peruvian Baileys) followed by Peruvian potatoes with Andean sauce, stuffed corn cake and lomo saltado (a popular, traditional Peruvian dish) followed by Lucuma fruit mousse with chocolate sauce.
DAY 4 LIMA
Breakfast at hotel included. As avid foodies you will know that there are many ways to get to know a city, but one of the most gratifying and interesting is through its food. This is especially true of Peru, with the infinity of textures, colours, aromas and flavors that the land provides. In the morning join us for an intimate and local taste of the cuisine of Peru with a visit to a local market where chef Penélope Alzamora will talk with her favorite vendors about the amazing variety of seasonal and local ingredients which she will then buy for everyone to taste as well as other Peruvian specialties.
We will then head to Penélope’s apartment in Barranco, Lima´s art district, an area known for its galleries and great food. We will explore the photogenic and colourful area which has become reinvigorated over the last 15 years and enjoy its parks and republican mansions which have regained past splendour. We will also visit Penélope’s favourite destinations eg. the beautiful and bohemian Bridge of Sighs, stop for some shopping and then drop in at her favourite cafe for a local organic coffee.
Then we will begin the hands-on class with an introduction to the local ingredients. In the class, Penélope will teach you a complete local menu with a couple of Peru´s classic recipes, specific and essential techniques, as well as the use of local and seasonal ingredients. The gourmet feast will start with a taste of a Pisco Sour, a traditional and national cocktail and tapas that you will cook yourself. Penelope's signature dishes are “Sudado de Mero y Camarones” (grouper and prawns) and Ceviche made with sole. This will be followed by lunch with a beautiful view of Lima’s coast. Or if you are more an eater than a cook and prefer to sit back and relax, Penélope and Lorraine will cook for you.
We mentioned that there is no shortage of interesting food and tonight's dinner is at Chifa Madam Tusan. Chinese immigrants in the 19th century, who took the four-month trip from Macau, settled in Peru as contract laborers or "coolies". The mostly male immigrants were sent mostly to the sugar plantations from 1849 to 1874 for labour in the coastal guano mines and where they became a major labour force until the end of the century. After their contracts ended, some freed coolies (and later immigrants) established many small businesses. These included “chifas” (Chinese-Peruvian restaurants) that have revolutionised Peruvian cuisine, gaining international recognition. "Chifa" reflects a fusion by Chinese Peruvians of the products that the Chinese brought with them to those that they found in Peru, and later cultivated themselves.
DAY 5 LIMA/AREQUIPA
Breakfast at hotel included. In the morning, visit the well-known Surquillo Market. You will be able to meet with vendors and try any of the exotic and unusual fruit on display-even avocadoes and tomatoes look and taste different in Peru. Take in the busy atmosphere and mix with locals as they purchase the day’s goods. This market is a known stomping ground for some of Lima's most innovative chefs.
After the market visit we will have lunch at El Mercado Restaurant. El Mercado, is a tribute to Peruvian cuisine. The name Mercado or market is an open air lunch only venue by chef Rafael Osterling. Dine on what has been said to be Lima's best ceviche or try the freshest scallops and other seafood.
At the appropriate time, continue to the airport. Flight to Arequipa. Upon arrival, we will transfer to Libertador Arequipa Hotel. There is no formal dinner arranged in case people want to relax and explore something casual on their own (or you are welcome to come along with us to look for something casual!).
DAY 6 AREQUIPA
Breakfast at hotel included. We start in the morning on the sunny outskirts of Arequipa in an area that is said to be inspirational for painters, photographers, writers and poets surrounded by volcanoes, pre-Inca terraces for farming-bring your camera along! We visit the district of Socabaya, the colonial-style "Molino de Sabandía", the Yumina terraces, and the "Mansión del Fundador". A nearly one-hour trek through beautiful countryside is also included. Or if you prefer not to trek, sit back and shop and have a coffee at a local village.
A lunch at Sol de Mayo, a typical restaurant, is included. You will explore “Picanterías” which are a social space for interaction between people of different social classes whose main characteristic is the preparation and sale of food and drinks typical of this region. Picanterías in Arequipa have been documented since the sixteenth century. We will try local beverages like chicha de jora (corn beer chicha) and chicha morada (made of purple corn) which people have been drinking since early colonial times.
In the afternoon, we will have a tour of the "White City", including the "Plaza de Armas" (main square), La Compañia Church and the famous Monastery of Santa Catalina. Then, visit the town's picturesque surroundings.
Dinner is at Zig Zag Restaurant, which focuses on Alpandina Gastronomy. Their signature cuisine is meats and fish cooked on volcanic stone, exotic salads, alpine roestis, pastas made from wheat and quinoa, and other original gastronomic options. This culinary concept was created by Swiss chef Michel Hediger during his years of residence in Arequipa.
DAY 7 AREQUIPA / CUSCO / AWANACANCHA / APA / PISAC / URUBAMBA (SACRED VALLEY OF THE INCAS)
Good morning sunshines! Today is an early start as we bid Arequipa goodbye and transfer to the airport. We depart with LAN from Arequipa for a very short flight to Cusco. Upon arrival, we will transfer to the Sacred Valley of the Incas. On the way we will have a quick stop in the sacred Sacasayhuaman fortress to see the Incan ruins famous for their cosmic energy. We will stop in Awanacnacha, a weaving center whose goal is to keep the traditional textile arts alive. This is also a great stop for shopping and souvenirs. Here you can see wools from four members of the camelidae family - llamas, alpacas, guanacos and vicuñas (the very finest wools that feels like silk that is very costly to buy outside of Peru). You will also learn about the harvesting of the different wools and the natural dying techniques. We have a chance to see native weavers from different areas showing their weaving styles and dress.
After that we will continue to Hacienda Sarapampa (meaning cornfield), located in the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Here, you will learn how corn influenced the Andean people and those that followed.
A lunch at Hacienda Sarapampa will be served based on both indigenous ingredients -this is where we will try alpaca. A Peruvian Paso Fino horse show unfolds in front of us while we dine. Then we will have a short visit to the town of Pisac and its Indian Market where we will learn how to make empanadas. We will then head to Urubamba. Accommodation at Tambo del Inka, A Luxury Collection Hotel & Spa. Tonight, you can relax in your room as it is a busy day.
DAY 8 URUBAMBA / MARAS / MORAY / URUBAMBA (SACRED VALLEY OF THE INCAS)
Breakfast at hotel included. In the morning you will visit Maras (salt mines of the Inca period still in use) and Moray (an experimental agricultural center from the same period). Lunch is a surprise!
This evening we will be dining at a chef's table at Chef Nacho’s kitchen at Wayra Ranch, where he leads guests on a three-course culinary Peruvian adventure accompanied by Pisco Sours. As you experience the Sacred Valley through your taste buds, learn about the produce of this fertile basin that has been the region’s breadbasket since the time of the Incas who built the agrarian terraces, called andenes in the Quechua language. These still grown natural ingredients at your table may include white and red corn, quinoa and some of the 4,000 types of potatoes that you will only find in Peru.
DAY 9 URUBAMBA / OLLANTAYTAMBO / MACHU PICCHU
Breakfast at hotel included. In the morning, visit the fortress and town of Ollantaytambo, a true beautiful old Incan town. Afterwards, in the afternoon, transfer to the Ollantaytambo station for a scenic 1 hour 30 minute train trip through the Urubamba Valley.
Cocktail making class, dinner and accommodation at Sumaq Machu Picchu Hotel in the town of Machu Picchu (located at the base of the mountain).
DAY 10 MACHU PICCHU / POROY OR OLLANTAYTAMBO / CUSCO
Breakfast at hotel included. Early in the morning we will take a 30-minute bus ride up to the breathtaking Machu Picchu, one of the Seven Wonders of the World and have our own private guided tour through the ruins. You will then have some free time to explore the archaeological complex on your own. Afterwards we will return on bus back to Machu Picchu town.
Lunch is at Chullpi Restaurant. This small restaurant with young chef José Luján (he is marked to be the next big chef in Peru) features exquisite food and service. We will try llama and his signature dish called “Sacred Valley”, liquid truffles stuffed with salt from Maras, corn and ice cream of huacatay (an herb known as the Peruvian black mint) with tree tumbo.
Explore the town and look and shop around the markets, go back to Machu Picchu if you wish. We have arranged a mid afternoon transfer to the Casa Cartagena Hotel Boutique & Spa. There is no formal dinner arranged in case people want to relax and explore something casual on their own (or you can come along with us to look for something casual!).
DAY 11 CUSCO
Breakfast at hotel included. In the morning we will take a short walk to the San Pedro local's market where we will see and try typical products, foodstuffs and shop for handicrafts. Afterwards we will return to the hotel and leave to have a small tour and orientation with the Koricancha Temple and the Cathedral in the Main Plaza of Cusco.
Lunch is at Inka Grill Restaurant, located in the Main Plaza of Cusco. Rest of the afternoon at leisure. You may want this time to relax and take in everything that we've done so far.
Dinner is at Limo Restaurant. The “Aji Limo” (chili limo) is an indispensable ingredient of ceviche the standard of Peruvian cuisine. Limo is famous for its chaufa rice as well as Japanese Peruvian food and is housed on a typical colonial Cusco house.
DAY 12 CUSCO / SAYLLA / OROPESA / TIPON / HUACARPAY / CUSCO
Breakfast at hotel included. We depart on Sunday for one of the most authentic experiences via an excursion to the South Valley of Cusco - this is a true foodie day. The first stop is in Saylla, 15 km from Cusco, famous for its chicharrones (pork crackling). Chicharonerías in Saylla also serve chairo soup, a filling dish originally prepared for campesinos (farmers), to give them enough energy to undertake long hours of physical work in the fields. Chairo features ingredients like chuño (dehydrated potatoes), onions, carrots, peas, habas, corn and wheat kernels, sweet potatoes, and beef or lamb or both. We will also try guinea pea or cuy.
Next stop is in Oropesa the production heart of a very special type of bread. The bread called pan chuta is a big, round yet relatively flat, loaf — some 30 centimeters in diameter and five centimeters in height and it can can be found all over Cuzco. It is sold in the city’s markets, its bus and train terminals, and along busy streets. All of this bread in Cuzco is made in a single place, the town of Oropesa 21 kilometers from Cuzco. The Bread of Oropesa, is made traditionally from quality local wheat. But it also has a hint of sweetness from additional sugar, richness from egg, and hints of seasoning from spices and herbs such as cinnamon and anise. Sometimes it also carries raisins as well as other ingredients and seasonal and local decorations. Special woods and eucalyptus leaves are burned in the traditional ovens and impart not only a crust and texture, but also a delicacy of flavor. Pan chuta is a standard gift when one goes visiting in the rural communities around Cuzco.
30 km south of Cusco, Huacarpay Lagoon is a group of high-Andean wetlands located 3170 m above sea level and is the site of our picnic. It is an excellent place for bird watching.
Dinner is at the Pre-Columbian Museum of Art (MAP Café), originally an Inca ceremonial court, then a residence of a Spanish conquistador, and now the only museum in Peru dedicated to the preservation of the arts and crafts of ancient Peruvian. Dubbed the “crystal or glass box” restaurant chef Jorge Luis Ossio or Coque Ossio as he is usually called formerly worked at Arpège in Paris with Alain Passard.Mains may include dishes like “Quinoa canelones with truffle perfume with a ragu with truffle essence, tomato pesto and rocket while dessert may be Lucuma (fruit) kisses in five textures, liquid, creamy, foamy, and powdery together under a chocolate shell served with home-made coffee flavoured chocolate ice cream from Quillabamba.
DAY 13 CUSCO / LIMA
Breakfast at hotel included. At the appropriate time, transfer to the airport. On the way we will stop at craft beer workshop of Supay Quinoa Pale Ale for a guided visit and a beer tasting.
Depart with LAN flight to Lima. Upon arrival, reception and transfer to Atemporal Hotelito Hotel.
Dinner tonight is a very special one at Central restaurant. Ranked Nº1 in the list of the Latin America’s 50 Best Restaurants and Nº4 in the list of the World’s Best Restaurants, Central is a truly sublime dining experience.
DAY 14 DEPARTURE
Breakfast at hotel included. At the appropriate time, transfer to the airport. Depart to Sydney via Santiago.
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