See Peru in style aboard South America’s first luxury sleeper service
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All-inclusive | Escorted tour | History & culture | Mountains | Natural world | Rail journey
As its name suggests, the Belmond Andean Explorer plies one of the highest railways in the world, taking in the sky-piercing peaks of the Andes as it goes.
Two nights / three days
Its signature three-day itinerary takes travellers from Cusco, the ancient capital of the Incan Empire, to Puno, and then onwards to Arequipa, a UNESCO-listed city built from white volcanic rock. In between you’ll traverse the Andes’ highest plains to take in Lake Titicaca’s floating reed villages. You can also disembark this journey early to visit Colca Canyon where condors soar over spectacular scenery dotted with pre-Incan architecture. The itinerary is available in reverse, although travellers will not be able to disembark the train at Colca Canyon – we would instead recommend you visit Colca Canyon from Arequipa, and then return to Arequipa to board the train.
One night / two days
There is also a shorter, one-night itinerary that takes you from Cusco to Puno (Lake Titicaca), stopping at Raqch’i – an archaeological site that was once a defensive stronghold of the Incan Empire. The journey is also available in reverse.
Hosting just 48 passengers, the Belmond Andean Explorer is a truly exclusive experience. Its stylish interiors are the work of Inge Moor of The Gallery, London. Her vision of an “an interior connected with the location” is realised in soft, ivory Alpaca tones, Andean slate greys and woven textures inspired by the region’s colourful handicrafts. It’s all strikingly contemporary, with private cabins featuring oversized headboards and chic furnishings. There are a variety of layouts available, with Junior, Deluxe and Twin and Bunk options. While only the Deluxe features a seating area, all come with en suite bathrooms and showers.
And the Andean environment influences much more than the décor, with regional flavours showcased throughout indulgent menus. All the ingredients are locally sourced; traditional flavours are presented with contemporary innovation. This is a truly gourmet experience, with all meals, and selected accompanying drinks, included in your ticket. The afternoon teas are a particular delight, taken as the Andean scenery rushes past. It’s all washed down with a superb selection of drinks and the South American vintages are another highlight.
The train’s immaculate sense of style continues throughout the public areas. Enjoy a treatment in the Spa Car, or take your drink in the Lounge where select wines, beers and pisco sours, all included, are served up to the twinkling of ivories from a medium grand piano. Lastly, there’s the open deck of the Observation Car where you can make the most of the Andean views. And, at each stop, a series of curated excursions will showcase the very best of each destination. For instance you’ll head out onto Lake Titicaca on a speedboat to discover villages built on man-made reed island before enjoying traditional performances on a nearby beach. Starting in March 2018, a spa car will be introduced, adding to the luxurious experience.
Stay here on these holidays
Machu Picchu and Lake Titicaca, highlights of any visit to Peru, are linked by rail via Cusco along some of the world's highest and most scenic tracks.
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