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Ethnomusicology Journey ~ 9 days / 8 nights

The Sacred Valley, Cusco & Machu Picchu

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Celebrate the essence of Andean culture through the wealth of its legendary music. Become intrigued by the sounds, notes and vibrations. Square flutes known as tarqas. High pitched women’s voices. Huge sikus that nearly touch the ground and make your insides vibrate. Magigal antaras that transport you to another worldliness. Swirling skirts. Explore the authentic music that intrinsically imparts Andean worldview through a native perspective—an ethnomusic journey to the heart of Peru.

Guests are introduced to a thriving music that honors the diversity and abundance of Pachamama, Mother Universe. Understand the intention and purpose, connected to the cosmic cycles in nature. Through the music , help activate the andean agrarian calendar, and learn ancestral values so important to preserve and revive.

Andean culture practices a graet diversity of music, with over 600 families of flutes. If you think of Africa – you think of percussion. In the Andes, it is flutes, and along with weaving and agriculture, music is one of its greatest accomplishments and contributions to world civilization. All aspects of life—ritual, art, music and science—are tied to the sacred land and the bounty of its harvest, and music plays a special role in tying this all together.

Winay Taki Ayllu will be your Andean musicology specialists., as they open doors to a world of understanding you would otherwise not have access to.

Sacred Valley Highlights

Trip Highlights:

  • Engage in this rare opportunity for authentic social interaction, personal comfort and participation in authentic music events and workshops while visiting both rural and cosmopolitan Peru.
  • Experience the Sacred Valley of the Incas stepping back in time, visiting its finest archeological sites, picturesque villages and colorful markets.
  • Savor exquisite Peruvian cuisine and experience the exciting culinary explosion.
  • Stay at Pisac Inn; settle into your room in the quaint town of Pisac for the duration of your stay. No packing and unpacking allows true interaction to evolve.
  • Visit a traditional community and participate in their communal workday and cook side by side with traditional women ~ a cultural exchange that deepens the appreciation of Quechua history and social life.
  • Marvel at Machu Picchu, one of the 7 wonders
  • Explore Cusco, capital of the vast Inca State, navel of the ancestral world.
  • Join in our commitment in the diffusion, protection and celebration of the endangered Andean traditions and cultural heritage. Traveling with PCJ directly supports this cultural work.
  • Shop in the local produce markets, see how food is grown and cook side by side with top chefs, local cooks, and the traditional women who have learned their skills from their ancestors.
  • Experience a perfect balance of sight seeing, cooking and related activities.
  • Receive a gift booklet of recipes and bag of cooking goods.
  • Enrich your life. Expand your horizons.

View Itinerary

Ethnomusicology Sample Itinerary

Day one / Thursday

Arrival Sacred Valley

PCJ Intinerary - welcome

Arrival at Cusco airport. Be greteed by your Peru Cultural Journeys guide, and begin a 45 minute scenic drive to the Sacred Valley and Pisac Inn. Lunch at Pisac Inn. Settle into your lovely room at Pisac Inn, meet the staff and enjoy a cup of coca tea to help you acclimate. Enjoy your first in a series of delicious meals spun into a select set menu so you may explore the diversity and richness of Peruvian Cuisine. Take the afternoon to rest, acclimate and explore the cobblestone streets of Pisac on your own. Gather for an early evening orientation with a welcoming Pisco Sour followed by a fireside dinner.

Hotel: Pisac Inn Meals: L, D

Sacred Valley Highlights

Day two / Friday

Cusco Archeological Sites

AAfter breakfast enjoy a leisurely 30-minute scenic drive to explore pre-Columbian sites outside of Cusco including the sacred spring of Tambomachay, the lunar and solar observatories of Kenko, and megalithic Sacsayhuaman. You will be captivated by the introduction to Andean astronomy and sacred geometry, the foundation of Andean culture that will be expanded on each day of your journey. Enjoy lunch at one of Cusco’s fine restaurants, or a local spot recommended by your guide. Upon return to Pisac Inn enjoy a few free hours to rest and contemplate, or indulge in an herbal bath and massage at *Unucha Spa. After dinner meet Wiñay Taki Ayllu, the master musicians who will be your local Andean specialists. They have dedicated their lives to preserving and reviving traditional Andean music, respecting authentic styles, tuning, vibration, times of year and intentions. Hear their story and immerse yourself in their context.

Hotel: Pisac Inn Meals: B, D (lunch not included) (spa treatments not included) Music event: Pisac

Cusco City and Archaeological Highlights

Day three / Saturday

Kusi Kawsay Andean School

After breakfast, enjoy a ten minute walk above Pisac where you will admire the traditional music and dance presentation by Winay Taki Ayllu. Immerse into an in depth introduction to the music that accompanies the ancestral agrarian calendar, and learn about the important role of music in activating this cosmic cycle. Following the presentation, visit >Kusi Kawsay School, an exceptional educational social project. Learning about the unique vision of Kusi Kawsay that combines Waldorf Pedagogy with Andean tradition, and how the traditional music is the foundation of this vision. Enjoy a picnic lunch, followed by a flute making workshop. Walk back down to the town of Pisac, and as evening falls, wander through Pisac as the daily market is broken down, enjoy a sunset stroll along the corn fields or simply relax with a Pisco Sour as you people watch either at the sidewalk café or on the balcony before another memorable meal in Peru.

Hotel: Pisac Inn Meals: B, L, D Music event: Pisac

Day four / Sunday

Pisac Music and Dance Workshop
In the morning finish making the flutes and begin a music and dance workshop, where the men play the flutes and the women sing and dance. Learn about ancetral values and the communal fiber imparted through music and dance. Enjoy a pizza lunch followed by an afternoon of leisure exploring Pisac’s colorful Traditional Indian Market. Admire the beautiful faces and calm excitement that transforms Pisac on Sunday, and don’t miss this wonderful opportunity to buy woven goods, sweaters and jewelry.

Hotel: Pisac Inn Meals: B, L, D Music event: Pisac

Day five / Monday

Community of Amaru

Amaru Community Member Guide

Delight in a 45-minute drive into the majestic high Andes and walk through the patchwork fields replete with potatoes, fava beans and corn to the traditional highland community of Amaru, where a genuinely authentic way of life is still practiced to this day. You will be welcomed with an endearing sweetness rarely felt in this day and age by this community that is consciously preserving and practicing their ancestral heritage. Through participation in a communal workday a beautiful cultural exchange unravels as you experience this incredible opportunity to step back in time and appreciate a quality of life with an admirable simplicity that is strikingly moving and profound. Enjoy a traditional lunch prepared with their prized agrarian products as the women begin to spin their naturally dyed wool. Others meditatively set up their back strap looms to share their ancestral weaving skills with us. This wonderful opportunity to purchase textiles directly from the weavers is not to be missed. Before you depart, the music begins! The frantic flutes and frenzy of spinning takes you to another world. Experience and understand this chaotic order. Return to Pisac for some relaxation and contemplation before dinner.

Hotel: Pisac Inn Meals: B, L, D Music event: Amaru presentation

Amaru Community Highlights

Day six / Tuesday


Begin your day with a nutritious breakfast of rainforest fruits and Andean grains to start a breathtaking one-hour drive through the heart of the Sacred Valley to the Inca town Ollantaytambo. Visit Ollantaytambo’s magnificent archeological site, learn about the Llama constellation and explore the town that was built in the shape of a corncob. After lunch enjoy a spectacular two hour train ride to Aguas Calientes, where you will spend the night in preparation for an early start to Machu Picchu the following morning.

Hotel: La Cabana Boutique Hotel Meals: B, L (dinner not included)

Ollantaytambo Highlights

Day seven / Wednesday

Machu Picchu


Get an early start to take the 20 min bus ride up to Machu Picchu. Upon arrival participate in a guided tour of the most important sectors of Machu Picchu, and following a picnic lunch surrounded by natural beauty and ancient ruins, spend a few hours to sit and reflect on your own. Take bus down to Aguas Calientes, catch the afternoon train to Ollantaytambo and drive back to Pisac. A light dinner awaits upon your return to Pisac Inn.

Hotel: Pisac Inn Meals: B, D (lunch not included)

Machu Picchu Highlights

Day eight / Thursday

Pisac Archeological Site & Market

Drive to Pisac archeological site where the staggering agricultural terrace work is among the most extensive in the area, following the shape of the mountainsides in entrancing concave and convex forms. The central astronomic and ceremonial area is widely acclaimed as some of the finest stonework, comparable to that of Machu Picchu. This expansive site provides an ideal setting for a picnic lunch with magnificent vistas up and down the valley. Embark upon a breathtaking walk down to Pisac. Upon return to Pisac enjoy some relaxation before your festive farewell dinner, and fetsive celebration with Wiñay Taki Ayllu

Hotel: Pisac Inn Meals: B, D (lunch not included)

Day nine / Friday


Early breakfast before leaving for the Cusco airport.
Meals: B

The order of your itinerary will change depending on the day you arrive.

Useful Information


Useful Information

Destinations: The Sacred Valley, Cusco & Machu Picchu

Description: High altitude, mountainous terrain. Easy driving tours and day hikes.

Altitudes: Cusco 11,200 ft, Pisac 10,000 ft, Machu Picchu 7,500 ft, Amaru 10,500 ft

Length: 9 Days / 8 Nights

Difficulty: Easygoing / Moderate

Category: Boutiuque (3 star level)

Journey Series: Andean Immersion Series

Available: Small group or private

Season: All year

Pace: Moderate, with time for relaxation

Special interest events: Two hands on music workshops, one introduction to andean music, three music presentaions with in depth explanations and participation.

Interests: Cultural & Culinary, Andean heritage, spirituality & world view, Sacred geomotry, astronomy & agronomy

Accomodations: This trip is based out of Pisac Inn. Small and comfortable, this boutique hotel is charming, full of artistic detials and old world flair that celebrate the depth richness of local Andean heritage.

A hotel upgrade is possible for part of the trip or for the whole trip.

Meals: This trip includes meals with exclusive daily set menus that are creatively spun by our chef. All of the meals are prepared using the finest local products with the clear intention of exploring the richness of Peruvian cuisine. The diversity of legendary and nutritious ingredients used in our meal preprations are fresh, organic and native of Peru.

Sitting down for a lovely meal, including a soup or salad, main course, dessert and beverage, is one of our trip highlights, with no dish repeated. We love food, and invite you to savor Peru’s culinary explosion.

  • Vegetarian and special diet menu available.
  • Beer, wine and cocktails are available, but are not included in tour price.
  • Don’t miss the famous Pisco Sour! It is delightful.

The few meals not included in your program will be eaten out at restaurants recomemnded by your guide.