Peru with Valerie Chang & Nicholas Gill

May 9 - 15, 2023

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True Peru

Immerse yourself in the culture and flavors of Peru with Valerie Chang & Nicholas Gill

May 9 - 15, 2023

One exclusive departure—reserve your spot

7 Day, 6 Nights

Best of Lima, Sacred Valley, Machu Picchu, Cusco

Price from

$6,400

Per person based on double occupancy. Includes internal flight from Lima to Cusco.

Questions? Text or call us
+1 (855) 219-8018

You’re deep in the Andes, harvesting a bounty of fresh beans and añu root to cook in the earth with smoke-perfumed meat. Beside you, a villager explains this flavorful celebration of an Incan goddess not unlike Mother Earth and its importance to indigenous Andes communities—to the cycles of life and to everything around you. This ritual is a celebration of life, and a magical moment in a week overflowing with experiences you’ll never forget: climbing up a misty Andean peak on the iconic Inca Trail, sunrise over a ‘lost’ 15th-century city hemmed in by forest-clad mountains, hands-on cooking and a mixology master class in one of the world’s hottest culinary destinations. This is the true Peru, full of flavor and epic adventure.

Joining us on this incredible journey are Valerie Chang and Nicholas Gill. Born and raised in Peru, Valerie has worked alongside some of the world’s top chefs and is herself a twice-nominated James Beard ‘Rising Star Chef’. Nicholas is an award-winning photographer and culinary writer (and part-time Lima resident) who co-wrote the book Central with Peruvian mega-star chef Virgilio Martínez. Nicholas—his passion is documenting the culture of food through the lens of biodiversity and sustainability—is widely considered one of the foremost sources on Peruvian and Latin American cuisines.

If you want to jump into authentic local flavors and explore the heights of the Andes, this trip is for you. Celebrate a land where the Inca’s age-old traditions flourish in the 21st century, uncover traditions and sacred ingredients, explore artsy Lima markets and nightlife, hike the Inca Trail and experience sunrise over Machu Picchu… Join us and go deep in the true Peru.

Explore

Lima food scene, Cusco and Machu Picchu, indigenous street food and hip local barrios

Taste

Rich Peruvian flavors, colorful food markets, farm-to-table ingredients and traditional techniques

Excite

Your sense with Andes hikes, up into the sheer audaciousness of Machu Picchu

Celebrate

Ancient Incan culture, local weavers and chefs, Peru's ancient traditions with Valerie & Nicholas

Your Experience

“Many Peruvian recipes have roots that extend not just centuries, but millennia. Everywhere you go the cuisine has its own set of flavors and influences.”
Nicholas Gill

Lima, Sacred Valley, Machu Picchu, Cusco

“Looking out over Machu Picchu at dawn is one of the most extraordinary experiences one can have in this life."
Anthony Bourdain

Our Hosts

Nicholas Gill

Nicholas is a James Beard-nominated and IACP-winning writer and photographer. A native of Ohio and resident of New York and Lima, Nicholas co-wrote Central (2016) and The Latin American Cookbook (2021) with Peruvian chef Virgilio Martínez. Nicholas is one of the foremost experts on Latin American cuisine and a passionate advocate for biodiversity and agricultural and cultural sustainability.

Valerie Chang

Born in Chiclayo, Peru, Valerie spent her childhood in Peru helping her grandmothers cook. After moving to the United States, Valerie dreamed of culinary school (until she attended and realized it wasn’t for her) and started working in some of the world's top kitchens—Thomas Keller’s Bouchon, Albert Adrià’s Michelin-starred Pakta and Michael Solomonov’s Dizengoff. Since then, she's set off on her own and earned the James Beard’s Rising Star honors in 2019 and 2020.

Day by Day

Day 1

¡Bienvenidos a Lima! Peru’s capital and largest city is also a global culinary hotspot. So we’ll dive right in exploring Lima’s mercado central and barrio chino with Valerie and Nicholas. After strolling the main square and taking in the sights and sounds of Lima’s most storied marketplace, we’ll make our way to a local tavern for authentic chilcano—a refreshing whirl of pisco, ginger and lime. 

Energized and inspired, we’ll follow Valerie’s lead at a hands-on cooking experience, creating our own Peruvian classics for lunch. We’ll return to the hotel for a bit of siesta and ready ourselves for an unforgettable first night in Lima: First up, we’ll make an appearance at Carnaval, recently named one of the 50 best bars in the world, for an aperitif and the ideal precursor to our exclusive dinner at Mayta. Here, Nicholas will walk us through the deep historical narratives embedded in Chef Jaime Pesaque’s world-class provincial cuisine, and we’ll raise our glasses and celebrate a week of adventures to come. Salud! 

Day 1 Highlights

  • Market tour & hands-on cooking with Valerie
  • Cocktails at Carnaval
  • Welcome dinner at Mayta
  • Stay at Hotel Casa República in Lima

Day 2

Today we move into the Andes! After a quick flight to Cusco, we ride into the Sacred Valley to reach Lamay. We’ll meet with the indigenous Huayllafara community, exploring their farms and learning the importance of agriculture and its connection to Pachamama (Mother Earth). We’ll be invited to harvest our own Andean ingredients—potatoes, oca, anu, trawl, quinoa and beans—to use in this afternoon’s traditional pachamanca meal. Our bounty will be placed in a pit barbecue where hot stones will cook everything to charred and caramelized perfection. We’ll feast like locals—casual, fun, authentic, delicious.

Day 2 Highlights

  • Flight to Cusco, transfer to Sacred Valley
  • Traditional pachamanca lunch
  • Stay at Hacienda Urubamba

Day 3

We’re getting deeper into the roots of one of the greatest empires in history. We start at Maras salt flats, a vast landscape of salt-evaporation ponds in use since pre-Incan times. Nearby, we’ll see the circular terraces of Moray, an amphitheater of agriculture with its own prehistoric irrigation system. Our host is from famed MIL Centro restaurant, owned by rockstar Peruvian chef Virgilio Martínez. They’ll share how these deep-rooted Incan traditions influence and inspire their modern cuisine.

But we won’t just talk about it—we’ll experience it first-hand. At MIL Centro in Maras we’ll be treated to an unforgettable, one-of-a-kind meal. It’s a storybook—actually, more like an encyclopedia—with eight courses, each representing an ecosystem of elevation used in their authentic, intense and fiercely local cooking.

Day 3 Highlights

  • Explore Maras salt flats
  • Lunch at MIL Centro
  • Stay at Hacienda Urubamba

Day 4

Today we head to nearby Ollantaytambo and board a train to Aguas Calientes. We can ride all the way there—or, if you’re up for the adventure, arrive by foot via an awe-inspiring, 11-kilometer (6.8-mile) hike on the Inca Trail! We pass over suspension bridges, through jungle and by amazing archaeological sites like Chachabamba and Winaywayna before reaching the last climb: up steep, narrow stone steps that lead to our first look at Machu Picchu, spilling down almost impossibly over a mountainside.

Walking through the Sun Gate, Intipunku, is the absolute best way to see this marvel for the first time. After a long trek, we’ll be able to put our feet up and relax in luxury at the hotel, Machu Picchu on our minds for the evening.

Day 4 Highlights

  • Train to Inca Trail
  • Hike Inca Trail to Machu Picchu
  • Stay at Machu Picchu Pueblo in Aguas Calientes

Day 5

We’re not done with Machu Picchu yet! After a delicious breakfast and leisurely morning, we’ll head back to see the clouds lift to reveal the scale and sheer audacity of a ridge-top site built between towering peaks. We’ll dive deeper on a spellbinding walk through ruin-filled terraces and ancient terrain.

This afternoon, we head back to Aguas Calientes to shop or take advantage of our beautiful hotel—whether that’s enjoying the spa, soaking in the pools or wandering the well-kept gardens and cozy reading rooms to relax with a drink.

Day 5 Highlights

  • Sunrise visit to Machu Picchu
  • Stay at Machu Picchu Pueblo in Aguas Calientes

Day 6

We’ve been busy explorers, so today is a leisurely introduction to Cusco, ancient capital of the Incan empire. Here, sleek and modern eateries fit neatly into weathered Spanish-colonial buildings, while locals in indigenous clothing sell traditional crafts and produce. It’s a lively place, where past and present lives in harmony (except for when a llama holds up traffic).

We reach lunch right away at Pachapapa, a local favorite, colorfully decorated and serving plates lovingly stacked with local ingredients. After our meal, we’ll get to know Cusco— its iconic streets like Hatunrumiyoc, a road lined in stone and draped in vibrant textiles, Coricancha, the spiritual center of the Inca Empire, and of course its renowned Cathedral.

Next, we’ll take the afternoon to rest as our last night in Peru is simply amazing. First we’ll make our own dinner (with expert help from Valerie, of course) from the 11th floor of the Rooftop Kitchen, pausing only to admire the bustling main square below. After dinner—a culinary tribute to our weeklong cultural immersion—we’ll follow Nicholas and Valerie to Museo del Pisco where we’ll get a final lesson in Peruvian mixology and toast an incredible week of discovery and joy.

Day 6 Highlights

  • Lunch at Pachapapa
  • Farewell dinner with Valerie & Nicholas
  • Cocktails at Museo del Pisco
  • Stay at El Mercado in Cusco

Day 7

For our last day together, we’ll drive to the nearby Saqsayhuaman, a hillside fortress built by the Inca by stacking enormous stones fit into a perfect, mortar-free puzzle. To return to Cusco, we follow Quechua-speaking locals walking from mountain villages to city markets on the fabled Qhapaq Ñan network of Incan roads.

We’ll freshen up before heading wherever our journeys take us next—home or beyond—with Peru in our hearts forever. Buen viaje!

Day 7 Highlights

  • Visit Saqsayhuaman
  • Walk famed Incan roads to Cusco
  • Transfer to Cusco airport

Where We Sleep

Our accommodations reflect the beauty and grace of Peru, setting the tone for our week of inspired exploration.

Casa República

Lima

A meticulously preserved mansion from the 1920s—all columns and finials and grandeur—this 22-room retreat is on a quiet Lima street and gives you a real sense of place. Nowhere more so than the rooftop bar. Order up a round of pisco sours at sunset, then take in the views of the beautiful bohemian sprawl that is Lima’s Barranco neighborhood.

Hacienda Urubamba

Urubamba

Tucked away in the countryside between Cusco and Machu Picchu, this five-star hacienda-style getaway is the perfect waypost for our journey. Serenity abounds throughout the 100-acre property’s open spaces, 10-acre “earth-to-table” plantation where you can pick your own produce, local and traditional style and modern comforts. This is Sacred Valley living.

Machu Picchu Pueblo

Aguas Calientes

Enter this luxurious Aguas Calientes hotel by bridge, which makes it feels like stepping into a different world. The hacienda-style hotel is set in lush rainforest vegetation, with brightly colored birds hovering over pools and through the winding nature trails you can explore. After a hard day’s walk, the spa and eucalyptus-infused steam hut will restore all your powers.

El Mercado

Cusco

You’ll be happy setting up at this one-time, colonial-era Cusco market turned boutique B&B. The 32 traditional rooms with beam ceilings boast a chic makeover, and overlook the hotel's central terrace. Filled with artesanías (handicrafts) and comfy lounges around pit fires, it’s the perfect place to stay warm, with a drink or two, on those chilly nights.

I formed bonds in unexpected ways with so many different people.
Brianna S.
I would do exactly the same trip again!
Julia C.
I loved having so many opportunities to explore Peruvian culture and the landscape.
Sue S.

Book Peru with Valerie Chang & Nicholas Gill

Number of Travelers

Payment

Reserve your spot today with a $1,000 per-person deposit plus room supplements (if relevant). Full payment is due 180 days prior to your trip departure date. We’ll email you a reminder. If your trip departs in less than 180 days, we’ll collect full payment either 30 days from when we receive your deposit, or 60 days prior to your trip departure date, whichever is sooner. For details read our Deposit FAQs

$6,400

Per person based on double occupancy. Includes internal flight from Lima to Cusco.

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+1 (855) 219-8018

Questions?

We have answers! Read our FAQs below. Or text or call us at +1 (855) 219-8018 to speak with a Modern Adventure trip specialist.

  1. What does the price include?

    Six nights at unique four- and five-star accommodations; internal flight from Lima to Cusco; private travel for all day trips and excursions; departure airport transfer; private tours with local guides and cultural experts; exclusive VIP access and tastings; guided activities, adventures and expeditions; entrance fees; daily breakfasts, most lunches and dinners; local beverages with meals.

  2. What does the price not include?

    International roundtrip airfare; travel insurance; transportation to the trip’s starting point; activities not included in the trip itinerary; hotel incidentals including room service, laundry service and hotel bar tabs; food and beverages not included in itinerary; gratuity for tour leader.

  3. Where does the trip start and end?

    Our adventure begins at the Hotel Casa República in Lima, Peru. The closest airport is the Jorge Chavez International Airport (LIM). We recommend arriving one day in advance of our trip start to ensure you’re at our starting point on time. Our adventure ends in Cusco, Peru. The closest airport is the Alejandro Velasco Astete Airport (CUZ). Your flight home or to onward travel should be scheduled to depart at 2:30pm or later from here.

  4. What travel documents are needed?

    Citizens from the United States as well as most Western European countries do not require a visa to travel to Peru. For most travelers you will need a valid passport. It is recommended for your passport to be valid at least six months after your travel is planned. Please check with the Peru Embassy or Consulate for detailed information and full requirements.

  5. Do I need to pay a solo traveler supplement?

    For solo travelers, there is a $1,200 single-supplement fee—paid at the time of booking to secure a private room. These spots are limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis.

  6. Who is going on this trip?

    Our adventures typically have between 10 and 20 guests, and our Modern Adventure Team. Our experiences are fun and inclusive and you can expect to be joined by a diverse group in terms of age, background and interests—including solo travelers, couples and friends traveling together. This adventure is for travelers age 18 and above.

  7. Who is leading this trip?

    This trip is led by an expert Modern Adventure trip leader. They’re an experienced travel guide, a representative of Modern Adventure and your go-to person for questions or concerns on the trip. We’ll be joined throughout our adventure by local, expert guides who are deeply knowledgeable with respect to local cultures, customs and history and are passionate about sharing that with us.

  8. Do I need Travel Insurance?

    We highly recommend purchasing travel insurance. Travel insurance allows you to seek reimbursement for your trip costs; if your trip plans change for unforeseeable reasons, or if you need to get medical help, emergency transport, and for theft, loss or damage of items while traveling. For best coverage, always insure the full trip cost within two weeks of your initial trip deposit and note that most ‘Cancel For Any Reason’ policies must be purchased on the date of your initial deposit.

  9. What is the cancellation policy?

    You may cancel on or before January 9, 2023 and receive a full refund minus a $750 per-person service fee (due to Inca Trail Permits being made at time of booking, and additional $250 fee is applied to our standard $500 cancelation fee). If you cancel on or after January 10, 2023 there is a 50% cancellation fee. On or after March 10, 2023 there is a 100% cancellation fee. We highly recommend purchasing travel insurance as we are not able to make exceptions to this policy in cases of family/medical emergency or cases of the trip being canceled (see our Terms and Conditions for full details).

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