Peru itinerary advice

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Hi there
My boyfriend and I are travelling to Peru in November. We have just over 2 weeks (fly in on 1st, fly out on 18th). So far, we have the following booked:
Sat 2nd: Lima
3rd-5th: Jungle lodge stay
Evening 5th-8th: Cuzco (any mid range accommodation suggestions? Up to £120/night)
9th: Sacred Valley Tour
10th-11th: short 2 day Inca trail
12th: Andean Explorer train to Puno

How long should we stay in/around Puno? We’d like to see the most beautiful sites/places in that area and stay somewhere nice (mid range). Are we best to stay in Puno or elsewhere? I’m thinking of staying around 3 days (too long??) for this area (Lake Titicaca/islands etc) so we’ll have about 4 days to play with after that. The first part of our trip is pretty hectic so we’d like to relax and probably stay put in the same place for 4 days. We’ll need to travel back to Lima for a flight early evening on the 18th.
I’m toying between the following:
Arequipa/Colca
Huacachina
Beaches around Lima
Which of these would you recommend. Or am I missing something better?

Thanks so much for your help.
Ali

Ali Dougal 04/07/13    Activity and adventurePeru Link Report

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Puno is pretty boring… go for the lake but 3 days would be way way to long.

I would stay longer in Arequipa/Huacachina. Much nicer places with much more to do…

Ie Arequipa; Mountain Biking the Volcano, The nunnery, Colca Canyon etc etc.
Huacachina is also ace, go wine tasting in Ica and sandboarding on the dunes. Both fun half day events.

Penx

Samuel 18/07/13    Link Report

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I agree with what Penx says, 3 days too long to spend in Puno, better spend it iin Arequipa/Huacachina.If you are in Puno and are interested in history/archaeology the burial towers at Sillustani are worth a look; as is the local museum in Ica

tinajaneb 18/07/13    Link Report

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Huacachina is a great place to relax for a couple of days. The Bananas hostel is an awesome low budget option with hammocks and a pool and you can book sandboarding there. Arequipa is a beautiful town with lots of bars and lovely restaurants in the square. Colca canyon is also a good option but requires a lot of time sitting in a minivan unless you chose a walking tour.

Sask13 19/07/13    Link Report

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Hi Ali,

Maybe, it is too late to give you some advices, but maybe not. So about the Cusco´s hotel:
You can check a lovely Garcilaso Hotel*** – http://www.hotelesgarcilaso.com/ and it is even cheap tan your budget. About the Andean Explorer train to Puno, it is better to do trip by tourist bus with stops on interesting sites on the route Cusco-Puno. This route is operated by Turismo Mer or Inca Express, for instance.
Puno itself is pretty boring and ugly, but Uros Floating Islands, Taquile and Amantani Islands are definitely worth a visit!! If I can advise you, don´t stay in Puno overnight, it is better to take a 2 day tour on Titicaca Lake with an overnight homestay on Amantani. I can recommend you this travel agency http://www.tierrasvivas.com/en/tours-peru-travel/lake-titicaca-puno. They also operates Inca Trail and Sacred Valley Tour if you have not booked it yet. A visit of Sillustani towers is also a good idea.
After Puno, I would suggest you to continue to a nearby town of Copacabana, it is placed on Bolivian side so that you need to cross its border. Copacabana is a very quiet and lovely tourist town. There you can take a tour to Sun Island (Isla del Sol), the cradle of Incan civilization! The island itself offers almost Mediterranean atmosphere, water of the lake there is absolutely clear and blue and you can find some Incan monuments on the island too!
You can find accommodation (family hostels) on the island or return to Copacabana that offers a a bit choice of hotels and hostels with a lake view, which is amazing!
From the other options, I would recommend you to go to the Colca Canyon to observe a special scenery and flying condors. Arequipa centre is also lovely place!
Huacachina Oasis is better to visit for a half a day and do sunboarding. I would really recommend you to visit a nearby Ballestas Islands that are called Galapagos of the Poors! They were given this name because you can see there similar fauna, but you don´t pay thousands of dollars for that. You can find a motorboat tour from about 15-20 dollars. The place is stunning!!

Camakoko 27/09/13    Link Report

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