Inca cultures and wildlife highlights of the Andean coast

Valparaiso to Lima

Cruise the west coast of South America on a sea and land adventure to explore fascinating archaeological sites and the mysteries of lost cultures. Discover Incan treasures like Sacsayhuamán, Ollantaytambo and unforgettable Machu Picchu on a voyage that also brings you to a pristine national park.

  • Discover important and fascinating ancient sites in South America
  • Explore the mysteries of the Incas and other lost cultures
  • Visit a mix of exciting cities and a verdant national park
  • See the Nazca Lines from the sky and experience the lost city of Machu Picchu


Explore the most fascinating ruins of the Inca, rulers of the largest empire in pre-Columbian America. We sail along the rugged coastline of this ancient realm to discover world famous natural and cultural treasures.

Starting in Valparaíso, Chile, we head north and visit stunning Lauca National Park, home to breathtaking scenery with snow-dusted volcanoes, sparkling lakes and isolated hot springs. 

Next up, you have a chance to discover the mysterious Nazca Lines, among archaeology's greatest enigmas because of their quantity, nature, size and continuity.    

After disembarking in Lima, your land adventure begins with stunning Incan highlights like the fortress of Sacsayhuamán, the town of Ollantaytambo, and crowned by the lost city of Machu Picchu.

Price includes: 

  • Hurtigruten Expedition in cabin grade of your choice on a full board basis
  • 1 overnight in Lima and 2 overnights at Hotel Tambo del Inka after the voyage including breakfast
  • 3-course set lunch and dinner on day 1, 2 and box lunch on day 3
  • Return economy flight Lima-Cusco-Lima
  • All transfers and train rides as described including English-speaking guide
  • Entrance fee as listed in program
  • Wind- and water-resistant jacket
  • Landings with small boats and activities on board and ashore
  • Professional English-speaking expedition team that gives lectures as well as accompanies landings and activities
  • Free tea and coffee

Not included: 

  • International flights
  • Travel insurance
  • Luggage handling
  • Optional Excursions and Gratuities

Related voyages


The itinerary

This is an expedition where the elements rule, so weather and wind conditions will determine our final schedule. Safety is paramount and the captain will decide the sailing itinerary during the voyage. Therefore, this itinerary is just an indication of what you can experience, and why every expedition with Hurtigruten is unique.

10 March 2018

Departure port Valparaíso, Chile
Day 1

The “Jewel of the Pacific”

Location: Valparaíso, Chile

This expedition starts in the wonderful, colourful and poetic city of Valparaíso. Before embarking on MS Fram, take some time to stroll the UNESCO- listed Historic Quarter.

Day 2
La Serena, Chile_©Elisa Locci - Shutterstock_Day 2.png
Photo: Elisa Locci / Shutterstock Photo

The Capital of Coquimbo

Location: La Serena

La Serena, the seaside capital of the Coquimbo Region, is one of the oldest cities in this area and is known for its lovely neo-colonial architecture. Colourful gardens and beautiful churches abound, and the melodic pealing of church bells can be heard marking the hours. Originally a base for the Diaguita culture, it soon passed into the hands of the Incas and later Spanish conquerors. Learn more about the town´s rich history in the Archaeological Museum, and visit the popular "La Recova" market, offering handicrafts and regional specialties, such as pisco and papaws.

Day 3

At Sea

Location: At Sea

A Day at sea means you can join the expedition team for interesting lectures, learn the basics of expedition photography, and spend time out on deck to enjoy the fresh salt air as you scout for wildlife.

Day 4
At sea_©Sven Schermer - Shutterstock_Day 3-4+6+10+12.png
Photo: Sven Schermer / Shutterstock Photo

At Sea

Location: At Sea

Our expedition team will continue to share their knowledge and experience as they summarize the voyage so far, as well as present the exciting plans for the Days to come.

Day 5
Arica, Chile_ ©Inga Locmele - Shutterstock_Day 5.png
Photo: Inga Locmele / Shutterstock Photo

Stunning Scenery

Location: Arica

Arica is blessed with a warm and sunny climate all year round. Spend a Day at the beach, or join the expedition team on a trip to nearby Lauca National Park. This amazing reserve is home to breathtaking scenery; snow-dusted volcanoes, sparkling lakes, isolated hot springs, highland villages and a huge variety of wildlife. Many of the sites in this region are a part of the famed Chilean Inca Trail.

Day 6

At Sea

Location: At Sea

We invite you to spend time out on deck to fully enjoy the experience of being at sea. In addition, our lecturers will invite you to join in on some fascinating talks. Of course, there’s also plenty time to chat with fellow explorers, or just find yourself a quiet corner to enjoy the deep peace of a Day at sea.

Day 7

The Mysterious Nazca Lines

Location: Puerto General San Martin

Puerto General San Martin is the gateway to the famous and mysterious Nazca Lines and geoglyphs. These lines were etched into the ground between 500 B.C. and 500 A.D., and are considered among archaeology's greatest enigmas because of their quantity, nature, size and continuity. The geoglyphs are several kilometres long and illustrate living creatures, stylized plants and imaginary beings, as well as geometric figures. Join the excursion to truly experience these marvellous creations of the ancient world.

Day 8
Callao, Peru_©Christian Vinces - Shutterstock_Day 8.png
Photo: Christian Vinces / Shutterstock Photo

Disembark and Explore an Incan Fortress

Location: Callao

Your sea voyage ends in Callao, a vital trading hub just outside of Lima, and this is where your land adventure begins. After disembarkation, you are transferred to your flight to Cusco. Enjoy lunch before exploring the amazing Incan fortress of Sacsayhuamán. The name of the site translates as "satisfied falcon", as this construction was named for the mythical bird said to have guarded the capital of the empire. The construction of the fortress lasted more than seven decades and required the work of 20,000 men to create the foundations, hew the stone, transport the materials, and carve the ornamentation. Like other Incan structures, it was created entirely without mortar, yet the enormous stones fit so tightly that not even a thin blade of grass can slide between them. This craftsmanship is a stunning example of the Inca’s sophisticated construction techniques and architectural skills. In the afternoon, we continue to Hotel Tambo del Inka in the Sacred Valley for dinner and an overnight stay.

Day 9

Highlights of the Inca Empire

Location: Ollantaytambo and Machu Picchu

After breakfast, you’re in for another Day of highlights. First up, we visit the Incan town of Ollantaytambo, with its formidable stone fortress climbing the massive cliff looming over settlement. This fortress was the valley’s main defense against the Antis and was the site of the Incas’ greatest victory against the Spanish during the wars of conquest. Constructed of rose-coloured granite, this huge installation was once a thriving complex of baths, temples and military barracks. Next, we head to the nearby train station to board the deluxe Hiram Bingham train to Machu Picchu. A delicious brunch will be served as we enjoy the spectacular views along the route to Machu Picchu. At last we approach the hidden city, situated above the raging Urubamba River, guarded for centuries by a tangle of vines and trees atop the mountain. Machu Picchu will forever hold the secret of its rise and fall – as the Incas left no written records to illuminate us. Explore the city's ruins, feel its pulse and visualise the lives of the priests, craftsmen, and servants who inhabited this incredible place. Excavations at the site have revealed skeletons, artefacts and woolen clothing, but, curiously, no gold. After exploring these haunting ruins, you can enjoy tea at the Machu Picchu Sanctuary Lodge before we continue back to Hotel Tambo del Inka for another evening and overnight stay.

Day 10

Centre of the Inca Empire

Location: Cusco/Lima

After breakfast, we head on to Cusco, once the centre of the Inca Empire. Here you can see the splendid baroque-era Cusco Cathedral, built in the mid-1500s on the foundations of an Incan palace. Many of the stones used in its construction were looted from the nearby Sacsayhuaman fortress. We visit Koricancha, to admire the lovely Dominican Convent of Santo Domingo that was built on the foundations of the Temple of the Sun, the most important temple in the Inca Empire. The curved, mortar-less masonry wall at the west end of the church is considered one of the greatest existing examples of Incan stonework. After another Day of exploring, we transfer you to the airport, where you fly to Lima. Peru´s capital retains an elegant colonial district in Lima Centre. There are some excellent museums to visit, as well as fine Spanish churches in the centre, and distinguished mansions in the wealthy suburbs of Barranco and Miraflores. Enjoy spending the evening here, and discover Lima´s outstanding restaurants and lively nightlife, before spending the night in a hotel.

Day 11

End of the Adventure

Location: Lima

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel before you fly home.

20 March 2018

Location Lima
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Getting you there

Please contact us if you wish to add on return flights and airport transfers to Valparaiso and Callao/Lima.