2015 Study Abroad
Exploring South America:
Ancient Peru and Machu Picchu
"Exploring the History, Culture and Genius of the Inca Civilization"
Departure & Return Date: June 9-19, 2015**
(**Does not include extension.)
Overview of Ancient Peru and Machu Picchu
Peru is located in the west of South America, and has borders with Ecuador, Colombia, Brazil, Bolivia and
Chile. It has sovereignty over 1,285,215 km2 of land and 200 nautical miles of the Pacific Ocean, as well as
60 million hectares of the Antarctic. Peru is larger than Spain and France combined.
Peru is the third largest country in South America and one of the 20 largest countries in the world.
Its sovereignty extends over 200 nautical miles. Having been a consultative party to the Antarctic
Treaty it has a Scientific Station called Machu Picchu on that continent.
Peru is an extremely diverse country, with 11 ecological regions and 84 of the world’s 117 different types of “life zones.” Peru has a huge variety of scenery thanks to its geography, which also provides it with a wide range of natural resources. The country has 3 main regions according to the traditional method of dividing the country by altitude: coast, mountains and jungle.
Peru's culture is one and many at the same time. Modern-day Peruvians are heirs to traditions of civilizations that flourished for centuries before the arrival of the Europeans. The resulting cultural blend was further enhanced by African and Asian contributions, which also took root in this land.
Lima, known as the City of Kings, was an oasis of culture and elegance in Spanish America from its foundation. Baroque and renaissance style churches, as well as palaces with stylized balconies, are part of the noble architecture of Lima, a city that offers the visitor museums, art galleries, recreation spots and archaeological sites belonging to civilizations that existed before the Incas.
Lima is also home to excellent museums that showcase the achievements of Peru’s oldest cultures; but the draw to Peru is the chance to uncover the very sites where the ancient Inca once thrived. Ascend into the Andes and explore the plazas of colonial Cuzco, the Incan sites in the Sacred Valley and the legendary Lost City of the Incas at Machu Picchu.
There are 12 World Heritage Sites in Peru: Qhapac Ñan; City of Cuzco-the sacred city; Machu Picchu Historic Sanctuary; The Chavín de Huántar archaeological site; Huascarán National Park; Chan Chan Archaeological Area; Manu National Park; Historic Downtown Lima; Abieso River National Park; Nasca Lines; Historic Downtown Arequipa; and, Caral. Machu Picchu also is one of the Seven Wonders of the World.
The Inca Empire
The Inca Empire (1200 - 1500 AD) was the most important civilization in South America. They are also recorded as being one of the most enlightened civilizations. Some report that they were so illumined and had such a heightened level of energy that they actually translated to another plane of existence similar to the stories of Enoch according to biblical accounts. This can be interpreted from some reports to mean that the Incans just ascended into the heavens.
Settled in the high and middle zones of the Vilcanota River valley, the empire represented the culmination of an ancient process of cultural development that began over 5,000 years ago. The Inca Empire is considered to have been a state, as it reached high levels of political organization and had a regulated system for wealth distribution, as well as excellent architectural and agricultural development.
The Inca population principally worshipped the Earth (Pachamama) and the Sun (Inti). They believed that their head of state, the Inca King, had divine origins and was the child of the Sun. (More will be added to the history of this great civilization.)
Flight & Arrival in Lima, Peru
Board your flight to Lima and arrive later this evening.
Sightseeing Tour of Lima
View the pre-Colombian art on display at the Larco Museum, then follow a local guide
on a tour of both the modern and colonial quarters of Lima.
• See the city’s cathedral, Plaza de Armas and the Monastery of San Francisco,
which houses a museum of religious art and 16th-century catacombs
• Enter the Huaca Huallamarca archaeological site.
Later, get to know your Tour Director and fellow travelers at a welcome dinner.
Free day in Lima
Enjoy a full free day in Lima or add excursions to Nazca Lines or traditional Pervuvian dinner.
Flight to Cuzco
Travel to the airport this morning to fly to Cuzco, where you’ll have
free time to acclimate to the elevation or explore on your own.
Sightseeing Tour of Cuzco
Follow a local guide on a sightseeing tour of the magnificent capital of ancient Peru.
• Admire the old Spanish cathedral, La Merced Church and the Plaza de Armas
• Stroll through ruins at Kenko and Puka Pucara, the “red fortress”
• Explore the fortress of Sacsayhuaman and Koricancha Temple, which was once covered completely in gold
Full-day Excursion to the Sacred Valley
A local guide leads you on a full-day sightseeing tour of the Sacred Valley of the Incas, nestled between Cuzco, Machu Picchu and the surrounding Andes Mountains.
• See the famous ruins of Ollantaytambo, once the royal estate of Emperor Pachacuti
• Stop in Urubamba to enjoy lunch with the group
• Visit several local market towns, including Pisac
Sightseeing Tour of Machu Picchu
Take a train to Aguas Calientes, through the verdant valleys
that lead to the Lost City of the Incas.
• Explore the perfect stonework of the Temple of the Sun
• View the fountains of the Royal Sector
• Take in the sights from the Temple of the Three Windows
• Discover the cave of the Temple of the Condor and the calendar of Intihuatana
Spend the night in Machu Picchu.
Return to Cuzco
Spend a free morning near Machu Picchu or add an excursion to return to the ruins.
Rejoin the group for lunch in Aguas Calientes before taking a train back to Cuzco.
Free day in Cuzco
Enjoy a full free day in Cuzco or add an excursion to Incan Traditions:
Moray Maras & Chinchero Village during the day and the
traditional Peruvian cooking class and dinner in the evening.
Fly to Lima this morning to relax in a dayroom before boarding your flight
home tonight or early tomorrow morning. If you are continuing on the tour
extension to the Amazon, you’ll spend tonight in Lima.
LIMA AND AMAZON RAIN FOREST
One of South America's most important natural wonders, the Amazon is the biggest
forest in the world and home to the single greatest concentration of life on the planet.
Hike through a part of this stunning landscape, take a boat ride to an indigenous
Yagua village and visit a former Franciscan mission town.
Flight to the Amazon--Iquitos & Yagua village visit
Fly to Iquitos this morning to begin your adventure in the Amazon.
• Board a boat for a scenic transfer to your Amazon jungle lodge,
keeping your eye out for the elusive pink dolphins
• Take a short river cruise to a Yagua Village to see local crafts
and watch a piranha fishing demonstration.
Take an invigorating hike in the rainforest reserve surrounding your lodge,
or add an optional excursion--the Amazon Canopy walk.
Local School Visit & Departure
Stop in the former Franciscan mission town of Indiana to visit a local school.
Then, fly to Lima to board your overnight or early morning flight home.
Overnight Flight and Arrival at Home
June 9-June 12, 2015
Avenida 28 de Julio #511
Tel: (51-1) 213-1000
June 12-June 15, 2015
Av. Pardo 1080
Cusco 1080, Peru
June 15-June 16, 2015
109 Pachacutec Avenue
Machu Picchu Pueblo, Peru
Tel: (5184) 211-011
June 16-June 18, 2015
Av. Pardo 1080
Cusco 1080, Peru
June 18, 2015
Avenida 28 de Julio #511
Tel: (51-1) 213-1000
Download Brochure and Excursions Below:
IMPORTANT TRAVEL LINKS
CIA-World Fact Book
(Get Exchange Rates)
Pre-Tour Study Questions
In preparation for our pre-tour orientation meetings, students are asked to write a brief one page paper on:
1. What do you expect to learn on tour?
2. How do you think this tour will contribute to your overall understanding of ancient Peruvian and Inca culture and society?
3. What is your specific study question for this tour?
Pre-Tour Online Study
Participants will be required to visit at least 10 online related learning links and videos on the course website
in preparation for the study abroad tour.
On-Tour Study Questions
In addition to crafting your own related study question, students are asked to address the following
questions, while on tour, culminating in a summary reaction paper at the conclusion of the tour.
1. Provide an historical overview of Peru and the Inca civilization. What are the classical cultural
traditions of this country and its people?
2. What scholars and recognized individuals have lived, studied, discovered, or traveled to Peru?
3. In your opinion and from your study and observations, what are the interconnected cultural similarities?
What are the cultural differences as compared to the United States?
4. Based on your observations combined with lectures from your tour guides and educators, describe what
you found most interesting and significant about Peruvian and Incan society and culture on all levels?
5. Describe your individual study tour question and provide your response to it.
Develop Summary Reflection Paper at Conclusion of Tour
Students will be required to develop a summary report of their travel, answering the specific study
tour questions, along with their own specified question upon completion of the tour.
Other Requirements and Study Tour Information
Students will participate in several half-day orientation meetings during the spring semester and
prior to the departure date of the trip. Students are also required to purchase travel journals and travel books
on countries to be visited.
At orientation, students are provided with a comprehensive packet of information which includes country
profiles, tips for traveling abroad, maps, U.S. State Department Guidelines and profiles, CIA Fact Book
profiles, Center for Disease Control alerts, Embassy Consular Information Sheets, flight information and
baggage requirements, customs requirements, pertinent fact sheets and maps on countries, and more.
Students also view video presentations of the countries to be visited during meetings.
As indicated, during the study tour, participants will keep a written and photographic journal of their
travel and experiences. Students interface with guest educators serving as lecturers and licensed tour guides during the day for the sites visited. They also interact with the on site Tour Director who travels and stays with the group 24 hours a day. Tour directors comprise educators taking the summer to travel and direct tours. They are highly trained in their professions and are usually from the country visited; they also are bilingual and speak the language(s) of the countries visited.
At dinner, students spend time in dialogue with the professor discussing the events of the day and what
was learned and experienced. This time also is spent planning the next day's itinerary of sites to be visited
in our free time; that is, sites not on the itinerary.
Students also get the opportunity to experience the culture of the country in a variety of ways-- through culturally enriching programs and activities, such as, concerts, theater and more. When time permits, concerts, theater, and other events are scheduled in advance.
Study tour participants receive perks and awards from Go Ahead-EF Educational Tours, such as, backpacks, luggage tags, travel journals and an international telephone calling card to contact home and family frequently. Students also receive a certificate of completion for study abroad.
Suggested Discussion Topics for your Travel Journal
• The cities, towns, and sites you visited.
• Things you encountered for the first time.
• Interactions and conversations with people native to the Country.
• Similarities and differences between your country and the country you are visiting.
• Describe a foreign custom or tradition that is different from your usual way of life.
• How the tour staff and your guides are impacting your learning.
• How your travels and what you have experienced impacts your understanding of global issues, the importance of creating world peace, human rights, and the concept of building a world community.
• Any comments you can make on culture and behavior, values, customs, characteristics of people.
• What are the differences in art and architecture?
• What are the most popular newspapers and news shows? Movies? News stories?
• Compare the transportation system in the country you are visiting with that of the U.S.?
• Who are the famous world scholars that reside in this country? What significant contributions
have they made?
• Pick a scholar or artist from the places you visited and describe the highlights of their career.
• For those studying psychology, who are the important psychological scientists residing in these
countries that have contributed to the body of knowledge in the field?
• What particular insights and leadership skills are you taking back home with you as a result of
your study abroad.
• How has your perception of your home or culture, or of the people you know, changed during
• What was your favorite or memorable time or experience on the tour?
• What will you now do differently upon your return home?
• How will you contribute to your college, family, city, country and world?
Related Learning Links
Overview of Peru
From the oldest civilization in America, to the largest and most powerful empire of the southern continent, Ancient Peru conserves the architectural and artistic vestiges of fascinating cultures. Discovering them is a breathtaking experience.
The history of Peru began when the first settlers arrived in Peru 20,000 years ago.
A brief and factual history of Peru.
Peru, a country with over 5000 years of history, one of the most diverse nations on the planet and a destination that holds infinite vacation destinations.
A sample of the foods of Peru.
Peru has 12 World Heritage Sites.
The Inca Civilization
INCAS, an American Indian people of Peru who in the two centuries before the Spanish discovery of America conquered an area stretching from the southern border of present-day Colombia to central Chile. Centering on the city of Cusco (Cuzco) in the Peruvian Andes, the Inca domain included the coastal and mountain regions of Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, and the northern areas of Chile and Argentina--the only true empire existing in the New World at the time of Columbus, and the greatest political achievement of the American Indians. In the native language the term ``Inca'' was the title of the Indian emperor. Today, however, it is also applied to the original tribe of conquerors and to all those people who made up the empire (who probably called themselves capac-cuna, ``great ones'' or ``glorious ones,'' in pre-Spanish times).
By the end of two long reigns (about fifty-five years in all) the Cuzco dynasty, known as the Incas, are in loose control of an empire stretching from Quito in modern Ecuador to the Maule river in Chile - a distance of nearly 2500 miles.
This empire appeared in 1100 A.C in Perú. located in Colombia, Ecuador, BolIvia, Argentina and Chile.
Rising from obscurity to the heights of power, a succession of Andean rulers subdued kingdoms, sculpted mountains, and forged a mighty empire.
The Inca conquered 300,000 square miles in a few generations.
The Inca were not only skilled engineers and warriors but also successful surgeons. Five hundred years ago, without the benefit of steel scalpels or antibiotics, the Inca performed a type of operation called trepanation—literally carving holes in patients' skulls. How did they do it, and why? In this audio slide show, bioarcheologist Valerie Andrushko of Southern Connecticut State University explains.
How did Inca builders ensure that Machu Picchu would survive in its precarious mountaintop setting? Ken Wright, a civil engineer who has been studying the site since the mid-1990s, explains in this interview.
The Incas gave birth to ideas and inventions still in use today.
Take a flight of fancy above the ruins of Machu Picchu in this 3-D, computer-generated animation.
The ancient city of Machu Picchu is one of the world’s best known archaeological sites.
Conservationists are growing increasingly concerned about the damaging effects of climate change on Machu Picchu in Peru.
Aerial 3D panoramas and videos.
The Work Accomplished by the Peruvian Expedition of 1912, under the Auspices of Yale University and the National Geographic Society. Prof. Hiram Bingham's explorations in South America, 1906-1911, and particularly his discoveries in 1911, were so important that when he was seeking funds for another Peruvian expedition in 1912, the Research Committee of the National Geographic Society made him a grant of $10,000, Yale University contributing an equal amount. His preliminary report to the National Geographic Society and Yale University of the work done in 1912 is printed herewith, and forms one of the most remarkable stories of exploration in South America in the past 50 years. This article was originally published in the April 1913 National Geographic and retains the original language and spellings.
Facts about Machu Picchu.
Machu Picchu-Breathtaking Panoramic View
Nazca Lines - South America, Peru
The Geoglyphs in Palpa Valley, South America, Peru • 360° Aerial Panorama
Official Declaration of the New Seven Wonders of the World
Peru-Land of the Incas
Peru-The Lost City of Gold
Peru Travel Guide
The New 7 Wonders of the World