File photo of the Inca Citadel of Machu Picchu in Cuzco
Pilar Olivares  /  Reuters
With Mountain Travel Sobek's eight-day adventure, you'll explore stunning highland ruins where the Incas flourished; and take a one-day hike along the last stretch of the Inca Trail to awe-inspiring Machu Picchu, starting at $3,645.
updated 5/12/2008 2:02:00 PM ET 2008-05-12T18:02:00

Book by: ASAP
Travel by: Various through 2008

The deal
For outdoorsy types and adventurers out there, we’ve scoured the world for the top hiking destinations that are bound to get your adrenaline going. What we found is a trio of excellent packages to get you to legendary trekking spots – the Inca Trail in Peru; Patagonia at the southern tip of South America; and Nepal’s section of the Himalayas. Mountain Travel Sobek offers these land-only trips that now start from just $2,545, with lodgings, meals, guided tours, and more.

Inca Trail, Peru
The South American country of Peru is a land of pre-historic and colonial sights, friendly people and spectacular nature. It’s also home to one of the world’s most dazzling ancient cities, the legendary Machu Picchu, and leading up to it high up in the Andes mountain chain, the famous Inca Trail. While this trek is truly extraordinary, it’s also a strenuous high-altitude hike, not advised for those who aren’t fit.

If you do want to tackle the Inca Trail, we found a fantastic package by Mountain Travel Sobek. On this eight-day adventure that starts at $3,645, you will stay in picturesque Cuzco, the former capital of the Inca Empire; explore stunning highland ruins where the Incas flourished; and take a one-day hike along the last stretch of the Inca Trail to awe-inspiring Machu Picchu. Included is lodging at deluxe hotels; ground in-country transfers; sightseeing tours with entrance fees; and meals. An extra reason to book this: Sherman's Top 25 subscribers receive an exclusive discount — $400 off rack rates! The package will cost you just $3,245.

Patagonia, Chile & Argentina
Patagonia, a vast region at the southernmost tip of South America, is a hikers’ paradise. With its soaring pink and white granite towers, golden grasslands, dense southern beech forests, enormous glaciers, and sparkling lakes of incredible hues, it offers some of the world’s best trekking in its two national parks: the Torres del Paine National Park in Chile and Los Glaciares National Park in Argentina.

With the Mountain Travel Sobek’s 15-day Patagonia Explorer tour, you will experience the delights of these two national parks as well as a cruise through the scenic Chilean fjords all the way to Cape Horn. Priced at $6,595 from Santiago for fall and winter 2008 trips (only four departures left: Oct. 24, Nov. 21, Dec. 12, and Dec. 26), it covers the five-day cruise; day hikes in Paine and Los Glaciares National Parks (easy to moderate); lodging for ten nights (four nights on the cruise and six nights in hotels and lodges); meals; and on-ground transfers. For this package also, we’ve nabbed an exclusive offer that saves you $400 off the listed package price. Translated, that means the package goes for $6,195!

Mt. Everest, Nepal
Climbing Mount Everest is the pinnacle of any adventurer’s dream but even the easy hikes through the celebrated Himalayas reveal this region’s otherworldly beauty. Shared between Nepal, Bhutan, Tibet, and India, the mountainous area features an ancient history, diverse ethnic groups, and rich cultural traditions.

We recommend a glimpse of this unique scenery on a 14-day Everest Escapade journey in Nepal with Mountain Travel Sobek. Priced from $2,545 for fall departures, this classic first-timer’s trek includes nine days of moderate to strenuous hiking at medium elevation (max. 13,000') of the Khumbu region of the Himalayas. The price covers 13 nights of accommodation — nine nights’ camping and four nights’ hotels; daily meals; sightseeing tours and activities; guides and porters; ground transportation; and more.

The dollars
The rates for the above packages are per person, based on double occupancy. The prices may seem hefty — even with the ShermansTravel exclusive discounts — since the airfare (international or domestic) is not included. However, these are excellent-value deals if you take into account that you’ll be exploring the world’s top hiking destinations with a top-rated outfitter who will organize everything for you. Once you hit the ground, you won’t have to think about anything but making it to the end of the trail. That’s worth paying for!

The catch
You better renew that gym membership before you embark on these journeys.

ShermansTravelis a guide to top travel deals and destinations. Sign up for Sherman's Top 25 e-newsletter which features the best editor-screened deals from hundreds of travel providers and is delivered to over 4 million subscribers, free, each week. ShermansTravel also publishes trip ideas and travel features to inspire, guide, and go.


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