In this new series, BootsnAll highlights indie travel trips that you can’t do yourself.
Independent travel is what we love here at BootsnAll. Nothing gets our juices flowing more than taking off on a trip, not knowing what’s in store. Just heading to a new locale, exploring, and going with the flow is how we like to travel.
But sometimes that’s not possible. While blue hair big bus tours aren’t the most intriguing thing to us, sometimes a guided trip or tour is a necessity or the only way to see something.
Two epic places to go to as part of an RTW trip, or just to go when you have 10 days of vacation are Machu Picchu in Peru and Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania. Both are once in a lifetime experiences, that can’t be done without a guide/tour company. Both places are regulated by the local governments to tax and “limit” the number of tourists who visit these natural monuments.
Hiking the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu: Peru
Machu Picchu is one of the most impressive sites in the world, and there are a plethora of options for getting there. Some take the train. Some take alternative treks. But many wish to hike the Classic Inca Trail, a 4 day trek through the Andes, passing ancient Incan ruins and arriving at the Sun Gate, with the famous ruins below, as the sun is coming up the fourth day. Passing through the Sun Gate and catching your first glimpse of Machu Picchu is a powerful experience, and one that you will remember forever.
The Classic Inca Trail is regulated and only allows a certain number of hikers per day, making it necessary to take a tour to get there. Choosing which company to go with can be a challenge, as there is no shortage of companies, but unfortunately there is a shortage of reputable ones. In this case, you get what you pay for, and most who go the cheap route regret it.
Check out the following articles and BootsnAll recommended trip providers to plan your trip to Machu Picchu:
- Cusco and the Classic Inca Trail: This 8 day trip gives travelers the chance to explore Cusco for three days before departing on your trek to Machu Picchu.
- Cusco, Sacred Valley, and Discovery Trek: This 8 day trip gives trekkers the opportunity to explore the Incan ruins around Cusco before taking off their Inca Trail hike.
- 16 Day Custom Peru Explorer: This trip combines the Inca Trail hike to Machu Picchu with a trip to the Amazon Jungle area of Peru as well.
- Custom Inca Trail and Lake Sandoval: This 11 day trip combines the Inca Trail hike with a trip to the jungle and a chance to explore the wildlife of Lake Sandoval.
- Peru: The Inca Trail Classic and Amazon: This 11 day trip is a shorter version of the 16 day Custom Peru Explorer trip mentioned above.
- Hiking The Inca Trail to Machu Picchu: An Experience Like No Other: Find out all the nitty-gritty details about what to expect when hiking the Inca Trail.
Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro: Tanzania
Ever dreamed of summitting the highest peak on a continent? That is the beauty of Kilimanjaro. While it’s not exactly a stroll in the park, hiking to the top of Africa’s highest mountain is attainable for nearly anyone in decent physical condition. At 19,340 feet (5895 meters), Kili is the tallest walkable peak in the world, meaning that no special climbing equipment is necessary to reach the summit, unlike so many other mountains around the world of the same size.
This is what makes climbing Kili so desirable. No special expertise is needed. It’s a great challenge for the everyday Joe who didn’t grow up in the mountains but still has a special place in his or her heart for standing atop a peak looking out over the world. Like hiking the Classic Inca Trail, hiking to the top of Kilimanjaro requires going with a guide or tour company. In developing areas of the world like Tanzania, choosing the right tour operator can be tricky as there are many dodgy ones out there.
Check out the following BootsnAll recommended trip providers and tips to hiking to the top of Africa’s highest peak:
- Check out the Kilimanjaro Machame Trekthat Global Basecamps offers (a reputable company that we recommend) – a 10-day trip that will have you watching the sun rise from the top of the mountain.
- Climbing Africa’s Highest Peak – Mount Kilimanjaro – Read the ins and outs of when to go, what to pack, and what to expect when climbing Kili.