Birding and Inca culture: Cuzco and Machu Picchu

7-day tour

A relaxed 7-day “Birding and Inca Culture” tour in southern Peru. The tour focuses on the most iconic historic sites around Lima and Cuzco. These excursions are mixed with birding activities around the archaeological sites, along with visits to well-known birding spots in the Cuzco area.

First, the tour devotes a full day to visit the city of Lima. Of course, the city centre still preserves its colonial spirit in its buildings and streets. Moreover, we include a visit to the Larco Museum, Lima’s most important and impressive museum. The museum features exquisite art from the Incan and pre-Incan periods. In fact, the most remarkable artefacts are the silver and gold artwork pieces.

Then, the “Birding and Inca Culture” tour explores the rich cultural heritage of the city of Cuzco and its surroundings. Upon arriving in Cuzco, the tour visits the City Cathedral and the Temple of the Sun. Other important historic site is the fortress of Sacsayhuman, built with immense stones weighing up to 120 tons. Also, we visit the archaeological sites of Pisac and Ollantaytambo; and the Incan salt pans of Maras.

Of course, the itinerary includes ample time for birdwatching at well-known birding spots around Cuzco. The tour visits lake Huacarpay, the Sacsayhaman fortress, the humid forest around Machu Picchu, and the road to Abra Malaga. Important bird species for this trip are Rusty-fronted Canastero, Bearded Mountaineer, Andean Gull, Giant Hummingbird, Andean Cock-of-the-Rock, White-tufted Sunbeam, just to mention a few. Expect to see about 200 bird species during this trip.

In brief, our “Birding and Inca Culture” tour offers a well-balanced experience of Peruvian culture and birdwatching.

Your holidays and nature conservancy: Cheqa Peru SRL, owner of Green Tours, will donate 50 US$ of its benefits per participant to “Asociación Green Tours” to support local nature conservancy initiatives.

Details and itinerary


Reference price per person, base on a group of 4 people and on double occupancy:

US$ 2,050.oo

Single supplement: US$ 350.oo


Private departures only.

All itineraries are fully customizable to fit your requirements.


Duration: 7 days

Best time to travel: April through December.

Group size: 1 to 8 people


Arrival in Lima and transfer to the hotel.

Overnight at a 3 stars hotel in Lima.

Meals: None.

Lima – Cuzco

Morning flight to Cuzco.

After check-in at the hotel, we will make a city tour, exploring the most important spots of the city centre. First, we visit the Temple of the Sun (Qoricancha), then the Cathedral church, and we finish the morning with a short walk on the narrow streets of the San Blas neighbourhood.

Later, in the afternoon, the Birding and Inca Culture tour visits the fortress of Sacsayhuaman. The walls of Sacsayhuaman have been built with massive stones, some of them weighing more than 120 tones. Finally, we finish the day birding around Sacsayhuaman, looking for bird specialties like Tacksanowski’s Tinamou, Peruvian Sierra-finch, Rust-and-yellow Tanager, and more.

Overnight at a 3 stars hotel in Cuzco.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch.

Birding and culture Cuzco Machu Picchu - City center

Cuzco – Ollantaytambo

After an early breakfast, we move to lake Huacarpay, south of Cuzco. Here, we could find interesting birds, for example, Rusty-fronted Canastero, Andean Negrito, Andean Gull, Giant Hummingbird, and much more.

Then, we drive straight to the Sacred Valley of the Incas. First stop at the archaeological site of Pisac, which is made up of platforms, aqueducts, paths associated with walls and doorways. In the same area, we might find interesting birds like Bearded Mountaineer, Hooded Siskin, Black-backed Grosbeak, and others. Also, we will visit the famous Pisac artisans’ market.

Later, in the afternoon, the tour visits the Ollantaytambo archaeological site. This was an important administrative and religious Inca town.

Overnight at a 3 stars hotel in the town of Ollantaytambo.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

Birding and culture Cuzco Machu Picchu - Giant Hummingbird

Machu Picchu

Today, we take a morning train to the town of Aguas Calientes. Immediately after arriving, we will take a shuttle bus to the archaeological site of Machu Picchu. Of course, it will take us about two hours to walk around Machu Picchu. Naturally, we expect to see birds inside the archaeological site. FOr example, we could find Inca Wren, Andean Swifts, and flocks of tanagers. Then, we will return to Aguas Calientes for lunch.

The forests around Aguas Calientes are reach in bird diversity. Therefore, we plan to spend the full afternoon looking for birds like Andean Cock-of-the-Rock, Andean Motmot, Green-and-white Hummingbird, White-capped Dipper, and more.

Afterwards, we will return to Ollantaytambo late in the afternoon.

Overnight at a 3 stars hotel in the town of Ollantaytambo.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

Ollantaytambo – Cuzco

First, we start the morning birding on the road to Abra Malaga. Here, we will be looking for special birds like White-tufted Sunbeam, Creamy-crested Spinetail, Chestnut-breasted Mountain-finch, and a lot more.

Then, in the afternoon, the tour visits the Incan salt pans of Maras.

Overnight at a 3 stars hotel in Cuzco.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch.

Birding and culture Cuzco Machu Picchu - White-tufted Sunbeam


This time, you will have the day at leisure to explore the city on your own.

Overnight at a 3 stars hotel in Cuzco.

Meals: Breakfast.

Birding and Culture Cuzco Machu Picchu

Cuzco – Lima

Last day of the trip. This morning we will take you to the airport for your flight back to Lima

Meals: Breakfast.



Cuzco is at moderate high elevation. Consequently, the weather conditions range from warm to decidedly cold at the highest altitudes. Also, it might rain at times.

Time Zone

Peru is 5 hours behind GMT. Also, it is in the same time zone as US Eastern Standard Time Zone. Additionally, it does not observe daylight-savings time.


You need a Covid-19 vaccine to enter the country. Additionally, having a Yellow Fever vaccine at least 10 days before your trip is recommended, but not mandatory.


220 volts in Lima and Cuzco.

Physical effort

People should be in good physical condition in order that they can walk on moderate rough terrain for about 2 hours. Rubber tipped walking sticks are welcome.


  • Lodging as described above.
  • Ground transportation and driver throughout the tour.
  • English speaking bird and cultural guide in Cuzco.
  • All entrance fees for nature reserves, archaeological sites and museums.
  • Meals as mentioned in the itinerary.
  • Train tickets to Machu Picchu.
  • Applicable taxes, fees, and licenses.


International or domestic flights, reconfirmation of flights, visa fees, airport taxes, excess luggage charges, additional nights during the trip due reasons beyond our control, bottled water, alcoholic beverages, snacks, laundry, phone calls or messages, any kind of travel insurance, and items of personal nature.

If you want us to include the internal flights within Peru just let us know.

All itineraries are given as a guide only. Actual holiday content may vary according to the judgement of your guide, and elements beyond our control (e.g. weather).

See our Bookings Terms and Conditions.

Scroll to Top