For most traveling to Peru, visiting Machu Picchu is a given, and it's a matter of how to visit and where else to include in your tour of Peru.
The two different options for arriving to Machu Picchu are 1) hiking the Inca Trail over 4 days or more, or 2) taking a panoramic train from Cusco, through the Sacred Valley and either visit Machu Picchu the same day, or stay in Machu Picchu Village (Aguas Calientes) that allows you to arrive early before the crowds or even visit Machu Picchu twice, depending on the itinerary. Unless you're up for the trek, train/bus option is how the majority of travelers arrive to Machu Picchu.
We highly recommended that your tour itinerary include the lesser known villages and Inca fortresses of Ollantaytambo and Pisac in the Sacred Valley and extra time in the navel of the Inca universe, Cusco.
Machu Picchu- Want some insider advice? Stay the night in Machu Picchu Village (Aguas Calientes) and rise early to have the ruins to yourself before the crowds arrive late-morning.
Inca Trail- the classic hike takes 4 days, but there are versions from 1-6 days, as well. Along the way, you will trek through the majestic land that was once home to the Inca empire and get to know Peru in a truly privileged way.
Sacred Valley- When the Inca nobles of Cusco wanted to escape from the busy city life, this was the spot. Most visit on rushed day trips, so be sure to stay the night in one of the charming villages so that you can get the most out of this experience.
Manu Biosphere- In our opinion, this is the wildest place in Peru's Amazon. See the largest macaw lick and maybe even giant river otters, among other fascinating biodiversity in this lush corner of the rainforest.
Lima- What was once headquarters for Spain's sprawling colonial empire is now headquarters for a world-renowned culinary scene. Peru's bustling capital city teams with rich history and mouthwatering food.