Andean Trails was started up in 1998. We have over 20 years of experience researching, travelling and putting together fabulous holidays.
Here is just a quick glimpse of some of our customers. Read what they have to say about travelling with Andean Trails.
Friends Debby, Jane and Rebecca booked with Andean Trails for a tailor made trekking and luxury tour of Peru. Here’s what Debby had to say about their experience …
What was it that attracted you to Peru?
As a keen hiker I’ve always wanted to walk the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. I was aware that the relatively small number of permits to do this sell out quickly, so it was just a matter of deciding when to go really, and then a bit of gentle persuasion to get a couple of friends to join me…
What sort of trip were you looking for?
Two of us had walked to Everest Base Camp in 2011, which took 3 weeks, so when we realised that the Inca Trail is just 4 days long we decided that we needed more of a challenge! We wanted something quite tough and remote, and the Ausangate Trek seemed to tick those boxes. We also wanted quite a lot of variety, rather than just a walking holiday, and the more I chatted to Kat at Andean Trails, the more I was able to tailor the trip to our precise requirements.
Why did you choose Andean Trails to organise your tour?
Andean Trails was recommended to me by a friend who lives in Edinburgh. As soon as I realised that we would be able to make a tour that suited our dates and our ever-growing wish-list, it was clear that this was going to be the best company to book through. It’s also great to have somebody at the end of a phone/email who knows what they are talking about, and I liked the idea of booking with an independent and local company rather than one of the big businesses.
How was your holiday? What did you think of Peru? Did everything go according to plan? What were the highlights?
Our holiday was, in a word, fantastic! (In fact on the last night, we tried to make a list of our top 10 Peru highlights, and were still going at 30!)
Peru is a stunningly beautiful place, and the people we met were all incredibly friendly, helpful, and passionate about their country.
The weather varied quite widely from scorching sunshine (in the Sacred Valley) to hailstones and dramatic thunderstorms (on the Ausangate trek). So did the scenery – from the scorched flatness of the Alti-plano to the frozen wastes and glaciers of the high mountain country, the cloud forests of the Inca Trail to the green and verdant flower-filled gardens in the Sacred Valley. Oh and the islands of Lake Titicaca, which call to mind the Mediterranean.
Cusco is a fabulous small city – yes it’s full of tourists but that means there are loads of great restaurants, bars and cafes. It’s also the perfect place to do your Christmas shopping. Everybody wants to sell you something, but nobody wants to annoy you, so even the haggling is all done with smiles and laughter.
Our trip went smoothly from start to finish, in spite of being quite a busy itinerary, transfers all worked, tickets materialised when we were told they would, we stayed in a variety of excellently located and comfortable hotels, and were shown around by some charming guides, especially Jesus in Cusco and Andreas who took us to Sillustani right at the end of the trip.
Some highlights of our Peru holiday, in no particular order and this is by no means an exhaustive list:
Walking through herds of gorgeous wild alpacas on the Ausangate trek.
The cutest children ever.
Ceviche – our new favourite food.
Walking on the Inca Trail for a day without seeing another soul.
The first glimpse of Machu Picchu at sun-rise.
Sitting in the Plaza de Armas in Cusco, watching the world go by.
Arriving at the atmospheric, calm and beautiful site of Sillustani, and having the place to ourselves.
Walking for 5 full days without seeing a single Westerner – again on the Ausangate trek – such peace and remoteness is hard to find in the 21st Century, which makes it all the more valuable.
The Salt Mines at Moray – stunningly beautiful, weird and wonderful.
Shopping for alpaca socks and jumpers.
Patagonia – we can’t wait!
THANKS TO EVERYONE AT ANDEAN TRAILS FOR A TRULY MEMORABLE HOLIDAY!
Debby, Jane and Rebecca x
Neil and Julie Buckley booked with Andean Trails for a tailor made trip to Peru in the summer. Here’s what they had to say about their experience …
Outstanding mix of cultural experiences and mountain trekking. Plus a life long desire to see Machu Picchu!
Active and reasonably independent, avoiding group tours but without the hassle of organising every detail ourselves.
When I made the initial enquiry by phone I felt confident that you understood what we were looking for and could organise it at a reasonable price. (You did not let us down.)
Brilliant – the best trip we’ve had in ages! No, everything did not go to plan due to strikes in Puno, so didn’t make it to Lake Titicaca, but a last minute change to Sacred Valley was organised which we really enjoyed.
Highlights too many to list but include Colca Valley/Canyon – the suggested extra day here worked out very well as it gave us a chance to get a feel for the place; Monasterio de Santa Catalina in Arequipa was just gorgeous; Santa Cruz trek for fantastic mountain scenery and the best trekking food we’ve ever had (thanks Cesar; Inti Raymi for the spectacle; and of course the Inca Trail and Machu Picchu – recommend climbing Mount Machu Picchu for fabulous views in good weather. Just one complaint – too many photos!
Isle of Mull, Scotland!
I can only shower praise on the whole organisation. Julia, our local guide, was amazing, faultless. Norberto was great and the back up team were so kind and helpful. Angelica’s cooking was terrific. As for the trip it was stunning. We were so grateful for the flexibility as there’s no way we would have managed Sajama after Huayna Potosi. The climbing was tough but really rewarding and the salt plains were sublime. I can’t decide what the best moment was as there were so many. Most importantly I want to say how Julia was truly superb. She worked so hard and was devoted to our enjoyment. I will write to her soon. So well done Andean trails. I want to take my sons back and climb Sajama.
If you need any recommendations do let me know. It really was a great experience,
What was it that attracted you to Bolivia?
We wanted to go somewhere that would be remote and not swarming with backpackers. Nepal and Kilimanjaro sound hideous to me. The size of the mountains and the novelty really appealed
Having climbed Ararat in 2007 we wanted a challenge.
We chose Andean Trails because of the customers service. After looking at a number of websites and sending off speculative emails we got a good feeling from Andean Trails response and then it was great to pick up the phone and be reassured that this was a credible outfit.
How was your holiday? What did you think of Bolivia? Did everything go according to plan? What were the highlights?
The holiday was superb. The climbing was tough but the rewards were terrific. The views and the achievement will stay with me forever. Climbing Huayna Potsoi was a real landmark. But the six day trek was very special.
I loved La Paz and the people we dealt with (Norberto, Angelica and particularly Julia) were perfect.
Clambering into the cooks tent for a great evening meal at the Condoriri campsite was really great.
Probably Poland and with my partner Polly so it may have be without crampons and axes. But I am going to have to come back and climb Sajama sometime.
Thank you for such a great time. Here’s a link to a blog about our trip:
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We chose Andean trails after finding you online. As soon as we got talking about our options, it was clear you guys were hugely knowledgeable and could help us plan the perfect trip. We had an incredible time!
Overall Organisation: excellent, couldn’t have been better!
Highlight: It’s hard to pick just one, but exploring the suspension bridges above Grey glacier was amazing, exploring the French Valley, and watching a huge chunk of glacier carve away were some of our favourites.
Low point: I’m not sure we really had a low point, it was all amazing.
Accommodation: hotel in Puerto Natales was great, really quirky, good service. As expected the refugios on the trek were pretty basic but perfectly ok, the cabin at Cuernos though was brilliant!
Food: Again, as expected the food in the refugios was very basic, but edible. Our food in Cuernos refugio was actually very good, a nice treat in the middle of our trek! In the hotel, our breakfast was very good.
Guides: We didn’t really have any, but the lady that met us at the bus station and took us to our hotel was very friendly and helpful.
We enjoyed spending a short period of time in Puerto Natales, spending money in the local shops and restaurants. All the locals were super friendly. Hopefully we contributed to the tourist economy. We were very aware of our impact on the natural environment in the park, and the clear impact humans are having with erosion of paths etc. We were as careful as we could be to make sure we had as little environmental impact as possible.
What would we do differently? Not much really. Other than do some training for the hike, 32km on the first day was hard going!!
We love hiking and spending time in the outdoors. We had a couple of friends that had done the W trek and their experience sounded amazing. We weren’t disappointed!
Thanks for all your help and advice in making our trip an experience we will remember forever!
Anna Redman, UK, 2019
» Patagonia Self-guided Trekking Tour
Andean Trails helped us organise a memorable family trip through Peru and Bolivia.
We loved exploring the diversity these countries have to offer - coast, desert, mountains, salt flats and rain forests – with a balance of culture, activity and a little bit of R&R!
I generally like to do the research for trips myself but after the initial research phase, it was great to have Tom as an expert partner, focused on delivering what we wanted to get out of the trip, whilst adding value by suggesting things that would enhance our experience.
He provided an invaluable sense check on what was possible, adding support and expertise to make our ambitious plan a reality - e.g, organising private transfers to get us to where we needed to be before the border closed etc. and providing the reassurance of a ‘go to’ person on the ground for help when needed. He was fabulous to work with and it felt like planning the trip with a friend.
Tom really knows the people and places in all the locations and his suggestions for activities to keep everyone in the family interested and entertained were spot on, meaning we had lots of cool things to do with wonderfully knowledgeable guides, including special times on Lake Titicaca with a home stay on Amantanti.
Thanks for helping us create the most memorable family trip.
Lynn Oliver, UK, 2017
» Colca Canyon Condors Tour
Kat was lucky enough to spot a Jaguar in Guyana - have you seen one on your travels?
#jaguar #guyana #wildlife www.facebook.com/Andeantrails.…
About 6 hours ago
Larry and Gillian are coming to the end of their month of travelling with Andean Trails in Patagonia. We put together a tour designed to take them off-the-beaten-track – read the first instalment in their blog – covering Santiago and Aysen and remote border crossings. Once in Argentina, Gillian and Larry trekked to the base of Fitzroy and Cerro Torre, and took a day tour to Perito Moreno. They then set off for Torres del Paine on a self-guided trek. Their tour has ended with a few days in Ushuaia and a flight out from Buenos Aires. Check their progress below …
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