The world’s only earthquake-themed festival, fireworks, horseraces, dances, parades, parties, Machu Picchu and more, are among the highlights of six new active adventures into the cultural heart of Peru with tour company Culture Xplorers. Focused on the culture, heritage and living traditions of Peru, each small group departure takes in a range of activities and coincides with a vibrant local festival. 

Why go:

“Whereas museums offer curated snapshots of a culture’s past, local festivals offer a vibrant, visceral connection to regional customs in their most colorful incarnations” says Jim Kane, founder/owner of Culture Xplorers.. “Our mission is to change the way people travel; to make the experience of travel more engaged, more connected and more reciprocal for both the travelers and the local communities with which we come into contact and that so generously enrich our understanding of the world.” 

Trip highlights include:

  • After shopping for seasonal produce at the open-air market, roll-up your sleeves with a local chef at his home kitchen for a delicious, hands-on workshop focused on fresh Andean cuisine.
  • Whether enjoying a hearty home-hosted meal, playing a boisterous coin-toss game at a rustic Andean pub, participating in an ancient earth offering ceremony or engaging in an art project with students in the Andes, CX travelers experience life at ground level.
  • Meet National Geographic grantees, Slow Food award winners, museum directors, curators and festival organizers in exclusive, behind-the-scenes visits.

Rates and dates:

Offered April through September 2014, these new 9-day Peru tours begin at $2,599 per person double and include eight nights in boutique hotels, lodges and/or unique properties; meals as specified (eight breakfasts, seven lunches and two dinners); private ground transportation throughout the trip; entry fees and permits for museums, trails, national parks and monuments; local, bi-lingual guides; emergency oxygen supply while visiting high-altitude; purified water and private airport transfers. Not included are international air and domestic airfare Lima/Cuzco/Lima (approximately $385 USD). 

Learn more:

For 2014 Peru season information, tours, availability and reservations, visit

About Culture Xplorers

Culture Xplorers (, a leader in sustainable travel, offers handcrafted journeys that deepen understanding and foster connection between travelers and local communities around the world. Culture Xplorers trips are created from the ground up, built on three founding pillars: people, traditions and impact. Their travelers meet the people of the places they visit, engaging in the living traditions that make each destination unique, and in doing so, create a lasting, positive impact through tourism. Genuine connections with people and place are formed farm-to-fork and around the table, via participation in local celebrations and through authentic exchange with community leaders and members.

[photography credit: masked dancers, image courtesy Cultural Xplorers]

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Ellen Barone has been creating words and images for travel and tourism since 1998. She co-founded and publishes the group travel blog and is currently at work on her first book "I Could Live Here".