Join Global Family Travels in an incredible journey to explore the culture and society of contemporary Peru. Peru's civilization is the oldest in South America and although it is well known for being the heart of the Inca Empire, the country was also home to many diverse indigenous cultures long before the Incas arrived. In partnership with two of our amazing non-profit organizations (NGOs), this 9-day trip to explore Peru’s Sacred Valley includes a unique mix of cultural and educational activities, learning about the ancient Inca civilization, home-stays and participation in local service projects.
TRIP HIGHLIGHTS are below, click on ITINERARY to see all the details.
Global Family Travels
Much more than a traditional tour operator, Global Family Travels’ mission is to “Learn, Serve and Immerse” through community-based travel programs. In partnership with non-profit organizations and schools, we offer family-friendly and sustainable travel experiences in support of education, gender equality, access to clean water, preservation of local cultures, conservation and economic growth, all of which foster cross-cultural understanding and global citizens.
Our trips include a unique mix of cultural and educational activities, homestays and participation in local service projects aimed at improving the lives of people in the communities we visit.
Expect to expand your family circle when you embark on a Global Family Travels trip! Visit our website for more information: Global Family Travels
Manos Unidas is a Peruvian non-profit whose mission is to improve the quality of life of children and youth with disabilities for inclusion within the family, schools and workplace. MUP founded the first non-profit school for special education in the region of Cusco, educating approximately 80 students each year. Visit their website to learn more: http://manosunidasperu.org/
Global Family Travels is partnering with Awamaki, a Peruvian non-profit organization that works with rural women to empower them with skills-based education and connect them with access to the market so they can earn an income, support their families, and help transform their communities. Awamaki does this through women’s artisanal fair-trade crafts cooperatives and sustainable tourism.
Awamaki works with nearly 140 women in 5 communities. Learn more about Awamaki here: http://awamaki.org/
At Global Family Travels, we believe that the most powerful way to learn is through first-hand experience. We let the country and its people be your teachers. We supplement your experience with reading lists, informal discussions, and a pre-trip orientation which includes information on the culture and history of your host country, helpful words and phrases and cultural “do’s and don’ts.”
Learning themes and experiences unique to this tour include:
Take in the charm and history of of Cusco and Ollaytambo
- Visit the Incan ruins of Machu Picchu, a UNESCO World Heritage site and one of the Seven Wonders of the World.
- Learn by engaging with Manos Unidas about their work and how they are changing the way Peruvian communities view disabilities by volunteering in their classrooms.
- Learn about economic development theory and understand firsthand how Awamaki applies them to their community work.
- Learn firsthand about local traditions and life by participating in a homestay with a Quechua family
- Experience the Patacancha indigenous culture and traditional weaving.
By engaging in two service projects, facilitated by Awamaki and Manos Unidas, you will give back to the communities that host and teach you. We have incorporated service-learning experiences at Manos Unidas to help improve the quality of life of individuals with disabilities in the region of Cusco and Awamaki is building an artisan center so that local women weavers have a space from which to run their business, which allows they to successfully engage with global markets for their woven goods.
In the Andes, traditional, low-tech building methods are used and our service projects may include the use of tools such as picks, shovels, hammers and wheelbarrows to help this community build the center. On the service project site, our tasks could include the following:
- Move gravel in a wheelbarrow and dig a ditch for a foundation
- Pass rocks in a line
- Mix adobe mud for wall stucco, plaster or paint walls
- Participate in a hands-on, organized work project
- Volunteer with students in the classroom, helping with various activities
- Support family-based projects for selected students
While on the trip, we will be immersed through the service projects, working alongside the members of the community in the various building tasks, playing with the local children, or helping out in the kitchen learning how to prepare traditional Peruvian lunch dishes. We will eat lunch in the service community, immersing ourselves in the local culture, foods, and living spaces. We will also spend one night with a host family, living as they do, helping to prepare meals and participating in the daily routine of the house. You might be asked to help feed the animals, or gather plantains from their backyard. We will have the opportunity to practice our Spanish, create relationships with people from a different culture, and experience global issues in a way that changes how we think and act when we return home. In Cusco you will enjoy eating meals in the student-run “Café Manos Unidas,” and have an opportunity to participate in vocational activities with youth with special needs and their families.
DAY 1, APRIL 11: Arrive Lima and transfer to flight to Cusco. Upon arrival in Cusco, you will be greeted at the airport by a Global Family Travels/Manos Unidas representative and transferred to your hotel.
DAY 2, APRIL 12: Orientation breakfast with Founder of Manos Unidas. Afterwards, we visit nearby ruins and stroll through Cusco’s Main Square.
DAY 3, APRIL 13: Visit the ancient ruins of Moray and salt pans of Maray on our way to Ollantaytambo, where we will learn about Awamaki.
DAY 4, APRIL 14: Early morning transfer to to Quechua village, Patacancha, service project and lunch with artisans in the indigenous village. Dinner with homestay families.
DAY 5, APRIL 15: Breakfast with homestay family. We will enjoy a weaving demonstration, have lunch in weaver's home, and learn about Quechua life. In the afternoon we will have weaving lessons and our second development discussion return to Ollanta.
DAY 6, APRIL 16: After an early breakfast, we will take a train/bus to Machu Picchu, and have the opportunity to hike around the ruins. Dinner back at a restaurant in Cusco.
DAY 7, APRIL 17: Full day at Manos Unidas School and a Mini Special Olympics on site.
DAY 8, APRIL 18: Visit with families whose children attend MU School, service project with families in their homes.
DAY 9, APRIL 19: Travel to Pisac before returning to Cusco to fly out later in the day.
A note: Our philosophy at Global Family Travel’s is to let the country be your guide. We will certainly do all we can to offer you everything that is on the schedule. However, should an unexpected event arise, we suggest that our travelers be flexible to change plans so that we can deal with the issue or take advantage of the situation. Meals included in the program cost are listed as B (breakfast), L (lunch) and D (dinner) for each day.
By engaging in the work of Awamaki and Manos Unidos, you will immerse within the communities they serve and make deep connections with the local people, learning first-hand how they benefit from the work of these two NGOs. You will also be welcomed by the diverse Peruvian people who take pride in offering incredible services and experiences to visitors that include traditional foods, celebrations and festivals.
- Engage with and learn from our non-profit partners who help improve the quality of life of individuals with disabilities and empower rural women with skills-based education and vocational skills.
- Experience Semana Santa – the Easter Parade – in Cusco
- Travel by train to the Incan ruins of Machu Picchu, a UNESCO World Heritage site and one of the Seven Wonders of the World
- Stay with a Quechua family in a Andean village to experience traditional ways of life alongside your hosts.
Explore and visit the Patacancha indigenous community and learn about traditional weaving.