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Best way to enjoy the Canyon area

Mobile, Alabama
9 posts
Best way to enjoy the Canyon area
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After doing some reading, we are considering seeing the canyon area as we travel between Arequipa and Puno. I'm thinking we would enjoy one or two nights in the canyon. I have looked at several tours, but most only offer one night (which may be enough) and anything longer includes treks. My husband is unable to walk long distances at one time so he would need some flexibility in how far we hike. I would welcome any advice on tours that may be a good fit or a couple of the hotels/lodges that have some nice hiking trails to enjoy without a guide. I have read that you can just book the bus trip to the canyon without tours. I wonder would we be able to enjoy the scenery from the bus and enjoy a stay in a couple of the villages/towns. Is it also possible to get a guide for a few hours from the hotel/lodge where you stay in the canyon? We are trying to keep our budget low to mid range and we are early 60s. We are good with most accommodations as long as they are clean and comfortable with a private bath (have done shared baths a few times). We can be swayed by beautiful scenery and surroundings.

7 replies to this topic
New York City, New...
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1. Re: Best way to enjoy the Canyon area
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You can certainly book a 2 night colca canyon tour without treks. The tour agency will just book an extra night accommodation for you. You can do the regular 1 day tour with the group & have a “free” day to do whatever you want. One night in Colca is enough without treks, unless you just want to relax a bit.

Price for tours will vary mostly on the category accommodations you pick. Check Killawasi lodge in Colca for some ideas.

From Colca (Chivay) most people get to Puno using the same tourist bus (4M Express). It departs Chivay at around 1pm arriving in Puno at 19:30. You can buy the bus as part of the tour package or separate.

http://www.4m-express.com/

Paris, Canada
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21 reviews
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2. Re: Best way to enjoy the Canyon area
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The Colca tours mentioned by the previous poster go to the Colca valley. The hotel will be in one of the towns in the valley, not in the canyon. The tours have great scenery on the way to Colca and the towns in the valley are nice. Usually a short walk in the valley is included and hot springs. You do also go to the Cruz del Condor, the start of the actual canyon, with nice views of the canyon and a good chance of seeing condors.

You could also take a public bus to the towns in the Colca valley (Chivay, Yanque) or a bus all the way to Cabanaconde, the town on the edge of the canyon. Hiking down into the canyon would probably be too much for your husband but you can walk to several viewpoints of the canyon in Cabanaconde (less than one hour return).

London, United...
Destination Expert
for Salta, Bolivia
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3. Re: Best way to enjoy the Canyon area
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We spent a couple of nights in the Killawasi Lodge mentioned above and thoroughly enjoyed it. Various trips around the canyon were included and well organised. There are other activities including some nice trails right form the lodge, although when we were there, the earthquake prevented us from doing some of these.

The scenery is breathtaking and absolutely no need to hike to appreciate it. some photos and details on our blog @ https://accidentalnomads.com/2016/08/16/colca-canyon-earthquakes-and-condors/

Killawasi itself is a very pleasant place to stay. Great staff, excellent food and spacious comfortable rooms. There are cheaper places and much more expensive options. we were very happy with our choice

Mobile AL
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4. Re: Best way to enjoy the Canyon area
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Thanks for all the help. I had taken a brief look at Killawasi and it looks like a really good overnight spot. I think we definitely would want to get to Cabanaconde and have some time to explore at my husband's pace. Maybe an overnight there would be nice as well. We both enjoy hiking, but hubby does not need to keep pace with a group of younger adults. Any suggestions on tour companies that offer this kind of flexibility and seamless transport back to Chivay so we can take the 4M on to Puno? The only problem with the bus is that they may not stop at scenic spots like condor viewing. I've also read you have to be very early in the morning to view condors.

Chicago, Illinois
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for Chicago
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5. Re: Best way to enjoy the Canyon area
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I would second Kiliwasi Lodge. My recollection is they had multi night packages in addition to the standard one night. There was no trekking. You simply spent more nights at the lodge, allowing more time for day hikes or tours in the area.

London, United...
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for Salta, Bolivia
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6. Re: Best way to enjoy the Canyon area
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Killawasi picked us up in Arequipa took us to the condor viewing point and around various places in the canyon. On our last day they provided transport to Chivay where we had lunch before boarding the (included) 4M bus to Puno where we arrived about 8pm. There were several stops along te way at viewpoints and places of interest. All pretty seamless. We don’t usually do tours but this was by far the most straightforward option.

Paris, Canada
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7. Re: Best way to enjoy the Canyon area
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The public bus will not stop at viewpoints on the way from Arequipa to Colca but they did stop at the volcano viewpoint long enough for us to get out and take photos. All tours will go to the Cruz del Condor viewpoint (with views of the canyon and the spot to see condors in the morning and late afternoon). If you travel by public bus to Cabanaconde you can get off at the viewpoint and when you are done flag down the next bus. But if you are going to go to Cabanaconde as well you can take a public bus there and ask your hotel to help you out with the short hikes to the viewpoints and with getting to the Cruz del Condor and back. Check out this hotel. The website has lots of information. Here is their link about the viewpoints: https://www.pachamamahome.com/cabanaconde.htm#inicios-de-trekking

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