31 days in Cusco Region, Santa Marta & Medellin Itinerary

31 days in Cusco Region, Santa Marta & Medellin Itinerary

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Route & dates

31 days in Cusco Region, Santa Marta & Medellin Itinerary

Start: Santiago, Chile
Fly + Drive:  8 h 15 min
1
Huarcapay, Peru
— 1 night
Drive:  1 h 45 min
2
Calca, Peru
— 3 nights
Drive:  2 h 45 min
3
Machu Picchu, Peru
— 4 nights
+2
Train + Foot + Bus:  3 h
4
Cusco, Peru
— 8 nights
+2
Fly + Taxi + Bus:  11 h 15 min
5
Santa Marta, Colombia
— 6 nights
Shuttle + Fly:  4 h 15 min
6
Medellin, Colombia
— 6 nights
Fly:  9 h 15 min
End: Santiago, Chile

1
night
Huarcapay, Peru

Huarcapay ©
On the 7th (Mon), explore the ancient world of Rumicolca.

For photos, ratings, reviews, and tourist information, read our Huarcapay vacation app .

Santiago, Chile to Huarcapay is an approximately 8.5-hour flight. You can also drive. Due to the time zone difference, you'll gain 1 hour traveling from Santiago to Huarcapay. Expect a daytime high around 22°C in January, and nighttime lows around 9°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 8th (Tue) so you can travel to Calca.

Things to do in Huarcapay

Historic Sites Museums

Side Trips

Andahuaylillas, Templo San Juan Bautista de Huaro
Find places to stay Jan 7 — 8:
Highlights from your plan
Piquillacta ©
Piquillacta
Templo San Juan Bautista de Huaro ©
Templo San Juan Bautista de Huaro
San Pedro Apostol de Andahuaylillas ©

3
nights
Calca, Peru

Calca ©
Change things up with these side-trips from Calca: Salinas de Maras (in Maras) and Pisac (Hacienda Sarapampa, ChocoMuseo Pisac, & more).

To find where to stay, ratings, and more tourist information, go to the Calca trip builder website .

Drive from Huarcapay to Calca in an hour. In January, plan for daily highs up to 22°C, and evening lows to 9°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 11th (Fri) so you can travel to Machu Picchu.

Things to do in Calca

Historic Sites Museums Parks

Side Trips

Pisac, Salinas de Maras, Sacred Valley of the Incas
Find places to stay Jan 8 — 11:
Highlights from your plan
Sacred Valley of the Incas ©
Sacred Valley of the Incas
Salinas de Maras ©
Salinas de Maras
Pisac ©
Pisac

4
nights
Machu Picchu, Peru

Machu Picchu ©
A symbol of the Incan civilization, the abandoned city of Machu Picchu represents a must-see on a Peru vacation.
Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Machu Picchu: Santa Teresa (Zipline & Banos Termales de Cocalmayo) and Ollantaytambo (El Albergue Farm, Archaeological Park Ollantaytambo, & more). Next up on the itinerary: contemplate the long history of Santuario Historico de Machu Picchu, look for gifts at Mapi Art, delve into the distant past at Intipuncu, and take in the views from Inca Bridge.

For reviews, traveler tips, ratings, and other tourist information, refer to the Machu Picchu trip app .

Use the Route module to find suitable travel options from Calca to Machu Picchu. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 15th (Tue) to allow time to travel to Cusco.

Things to do in Machu Picchu

Historic Sites Parks Nature

Side Trips

Ollantaytambo, Santa Teresa
Find places to stay Jan 11 — 15:
Highlights from your plan
Santuario Historico de Machu Picchu ©
Archaeological Park Ollantaytambo ©
Archaeological Park Ollantaytambo
Intipuncu ©
Intipuncu

8
nights
Cusco, Peru

Cusco ©
Capital of the Inca Empire for three centuries, World Heritage-listed Cusco is now a major tourist destination, drawing nearly 2 million annual tourists with its well-preserved colonial architecture and proximity to Machu Picchu.
Explore Cusco's surroundings by going to Urubamba (Museo Inkariy, Zipline, & more) and Perolniyoq Waterfall (in Ollantaytambo). There's still lots to do: explore the ancient world of Sacsayhuaman, take an in-depth tour of Pre-Columbian Art Museum, get in on the family fun at Manu Wildlife Peru, and contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Qorikancha.

For traveler tips, where to stay, photos, and more tourist information, you can read our Cusco online road trip planner .

You can do a combination of train and bus from Machu Picchu to Cusco in 3 hours. Other options are to drive; or take a bus. In January in Cusco, expect temperatures between 22°C during the day and 9°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 23rd (Wed) to allow enough time to travel to Santa Marta.

Things to do in Cusco

Historic Sites Outdoors Tours

Side Trips

Urubamba, Ollantaytambo, Choquequirao Archeological Park
Find places to stay Jan 15 — 23:
Highlights from your plan
Sacsayhuaman ©
Sacsayhuaman
Plaza de Armas ©
Plaza de Armas
Museo de Arte Precolombino ©
Museo de Arte Precolombino

6
nights
Santa Marta, Colombia

Santa Marta ©
Many visitors begin their Santa Marta holiday, surrounded by urban clutter and heavy traffic, expecting little from the city in terms of historical importance.
Spend the 26th (Sat) exploring nature at Nabusimake. There's still lots to do: explore the wealth of natural beauty at Parque Nacional Natural Tayrona, examine the collection at Museo del Oro Tairona - Casa de la Aduana, head outdoors with Rio Don Diego, and admire the masterpieces at Quinta de San Pedro Alejandrino.

For reviews, where to stay, traveler tips, and more tourist information, refer to the Santa Marta trip planner.

Fly from Cusco to Santa Marta in 11.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and bus; or drive. Expect much hotter temperatures when traveling from Cusco in January; daily highs in Santa Marta reach 39°C and lows reach 27°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 30th (Wed) so you can travel to Medellin.

Things to do in Santa Marta

Parks Outdoors Nature

Side Trip

Parque Nacional Natural Tayrona
Find places to stay Jan 24 — 30:
Highlights from your plan
Parque Nacional Natural Tayrona ©
Parque Nacional Natural Tayrona
Scuba & Snorkeling
Quinta de San Pedro Alejandrino ©
Quinta de San Pedro Alejandrino

6
nights
Medellin, Colombia

Nestled between rising hills in a narrow valley, Medellin serves as an energetic melting pot of people from all socio-economic classes.
Take a break from Medellin with a short trip to Piedra Del Penol in Guatape, about 1h 50 min away. There's lots more to do: take in the local highlights with Walking tours, admire nature's wide array of creatures at Parque Explora, get engrossed in the history at Museo de Antioquia, and explore the landscape on two wheels at 2000m Descent and more.

To see more things to do, other places to visit, reviews, and tourist information, read Medellin route maker .

Fly from Santa Marta to Medellin in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and flight; or drive. Plan for little chillier temperatures traveling from Santa Marta in January, with highs in Medellin at 32°C and lows at 20°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 5th (Tue) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Medellin

Parks Tours Outdoors

Side Trip

Piedra Del Penol
Find places to stay Jan 30 — Feb 5:
Highlights from your plan
Parasailing & Paragliding
Walking tours
Parque Explora ©
Parque Explora

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