You arrive in Lima to begin the adventure. We will meet you at the airport and take you to your hotel. We will hold a group meeting at 4:00 p.m, followed by a Pisco Sour to welcome you at La Rosa Nautica, a lovely restaurant by the ocean. To introduce you to some Peruvian culture, we will go to the bohemian district of Barranco for supper, accompanied by a bit of folk and criolla music.
We leave for Huancayo - a spectacular trip. We will take the highest train in the world if it is running, or alternatively we will travel by bus. The scenery along the way will show an interesting change of landscapes, environments and lifestyles of the people we travel higher and higher in altitude. We leave Lima at sea level, climb rapidly up to 4818 m, and then down again to 3240 m as we approach the mountain valley of the Mantaro River. This will give you a good chance to test how well you adapt to the high altitude. On arrival in Huancayo we will go to La Casa de La Abuela for lodging, and to La Cabaña for supper.
We will take a very interesting circuit specially designed to get you used to biking in the Andes, and to become acquainted with the scenery and culture of the area. We will visit several villages specializing in craft production, a bit of gourd carving, tapestry weaving and silver filigree. For lunch we will have Pachamanca, a meal typical of the region which is cooked in a firepit. To cap off this unforgettable day, for those who want to be spoiled, we can go for a sauna, scented with eucalyptus leaves and citrus on our return to Huancayo. The approximate biking distance for this day is only 45 km.
We drive to Jauja then ride our bikes for our first climb up the Andean slopes, a nice steady tour from 3350 m to 4200 m. This will be a bit demanding on the legs and lungs, but arriving at the top, you will be warmly greeted by some llama herders who live in huts near to our first campsite. These friendly people will share a bit of their time with us to explain some of their life in the Andean Mountains. This area is also well known for having vicuñas, so watch for these graceful cameloids, a protected species that is coveted for its wool, the finest and most expensive in the world!
After breakfast with our herder friends, we take our bikes down to Tarma, the Pearl of the Andes ... yes, it is all-downhill! From Tarma we continue to San Ramón and then to La Merced, already at the beginning of the High Jungle at only 700 m. After a good jungle lunch, we drive to El Tunki, my father’s farm. This 3-hour drive will take us up to green mountains in the middle of the cloud forest. A refreshing shower under the cold waterfalls will wake you up from this beautiful dream. A good dinner to welcome you to the jungle comes next. Finally, we’ll settle into our tents to sleep under the shooting stars.
This day we go trekking in the forest, rock climbing on the sides of the waterfalls, and enjoy being in this hidden paradise which will make a very special mark in our memories. We go to sleep early this night as a big day is coming tomorrow.
We get up early to go trekking to the Peñaplaza River, which has amazing jungle life. A bit of extra climbing will take us to almost 3000 m, but we are still surrounded by the exotic vegetation of the High Jungle. Tonight we camp in the middle of the forest.
An early breakfast, then a bit of trekking towards the remote town of Raimondi. We have lunch there and pick up our bikes, which will be waiting to go downhill, back to my father’s farm. Our goodbye dinner will be waiting and also a hot Calientito to help us sleep well.
We ride our bikes down to a suspension bridge where we take a raft all the way down to the Paucatambo River. This is a very beautiful river for rafting with clear water, good rapids, and great jumps that will make the adrenaline flow. Upon arriving at the junction of the Paucartambo and Chanchamayo Rivers, we will have lunch, and then take a car along the Trans Amazonic road to Satipo, a jungle city where we will enjoy a leisurely afternoon.
We start early from Satipo along an old road that was once a trail for the first Franciscan missions to the jungle coming from the Central Andes. We bike to Mariposa and then to Zapallal, where we camp. The way up from the jungle to the mountains is not easy, so in the morning we will drive to Comas, a very high mountain town. From here we will bike to Concepción, a winding mountain road with sharp cliffs. Luckily there is not much traffic! We arrive at Santa Rosa, and of course visit the Missionary Convent of Ocopa. Then with our car we drive to Huancayo, back to our starting point, La Casa de la Abuela and La Cabaña.
We travel back towards Lima taking the road to Yauyos, another back road. Very impressive on the way up, but even more impressive and fun on the way down as we take our bikes to Lunuhuana, a nice little town that is waiting for us with Pisco and wine for the last night of our adventure. A lovely meal with local shrimp will be our last dinner in this remote and rarely visited spot of Peru.
Back in Lima, you can do some laundry, and post some letters. We meet for lunch at a place well known among the locals, and then we go to the famous Gold Museum. In the afternoon we do some last minute shopping at the craft markets for good bargains and beautiful gifts for the family and friends who will have the patience to listen to all of our stories. We will finish with a supper accompanied by Peruvian music and Pisco Sours.