I wish to visit Machu Picchu and wish to request help with planning and suggesting an itinerary. Thereís a lot of info on visiting Machu Picchu and surrounding destinations, but I am just starting my research and find the info a bit overwhelming.
I understand there are two seasons, dry and wet. Prefer to visit during the dry, which I understand to be between April and October. I understand crowds might be busiest during July, and August, and will avoid traveling these months. Iíd prefer to travel sooner rather than later, so I am thinking maybe mid-may, or early June. Which would be recommended for dry weather, and fewer crowds? Or, would you suggest some other period?
As for the number of days I am interested in traveling, I would say a max of 10 nights/11 days. However, this includes a day of travel to Peru, and a day for return travel home. I also wish to visit Lima, Cusco, Sacred Valley, as well as any other suggested destination you might recommend, in addition to Machu Picchu. Given this, what itinerary would you suggest/recommend?
In addition, I see that there are an overwhelming number of tours. I also see that some people do their own independent travel. We are interested in taking day tours, guides, but hoping to save money by doing our own independent travel as opposed to booking a package. I do have frequent flier miles that I hope to use for booking flights to Lima/Cusco on either American or Lan, and I have hotel points with Hilton and Starwood hotels, that might help save me money for a hotel in Lima. As for Cusco, Iíd probably have to make my own hotel reservation, but in Sacred Valley, it appears I could save money by using my Starwood hotel points to stay at the Tambo del Inka Resort, which appears to be in the Sacred Valley area. So, what I was hoping, was to find tours or guides to show us Lima, Cusco, Sacred Valley, and Machu Picchu, but hoping to find such tours or guides for showing us these destinations, but not book a hotel included package so we can take advantage of using our hotel points for discounted stays in Lima and Sacred Valley.
As for visiting Machu Picchu, we want to see everything there is to see and do there, how much time would we need? Should we overnight at Machu Picchu, or return to a hotel elsewhere, such as the Tambo del Inka Resort in Sacred Valley? Which train is recommended, and what time should we arrive?
Given the information Iíve provided above, Iíd appreciate a suggested itinerary, what to see, when, and can I book lodgings on my own, yet find tours to show us around the various destinations and sights, without a packaged tour?
Appreciate any help and information, thank you so much.