Faculty: Holly Shelton
Class meeting time: Tuesdays from 6:30 to 9 p.m.
Trip Dates: May, 2024

A view of a tree and the ocean


This trip is built around the Incan Empire, Machu Picchu, and the Amazon River. The Amazon basin (river and rain forest) is home to some of the most rare and endangered vegetation and wildlife on the planet. This trip will also explore the ancient Inca culture with an extended visit to the Machu Picchu ruins in Peru.

This course will study the culture, history, vegetation and wildlife of Peru, the Incan Empire, and the Amazon River. We will experience Lima, the largest city in Peru with all the food, dancing, industry, and culture it has to offer. We will travel to the ancient ruins of the Incan Empire in Machu Picchu and explore the history behind this advanced civilization. Special attention will be given to how the Inca’s lived and thrived and how the Spanish caused their demise. The Incan religious and political traditions will be studied. Traveling to the Amazon River will include boating trips, hiking excursions, and a trip through the canopy of the Rain Forest. Students will have opportunities to explore the mysteries of the Amazon from the natives living along the river, to the marine life in the river, to the animals living and thriving alongside the river, and to the vegetation in, on and around the river. Special attention will be given to studying the endangered wildlife and vegetation on the Amazon.

Tentative Itinerary

Day 1 Fly from Portland to Lima
Day 2 Visit Lima, museums, eat delicious food
Day 3-6 Iquitos; Amazon and jungle lodges
Day 6 Travel to Arequipa
Day 7-11 Arequipa, colonial city, Colca Canyon
Day 12-15 Travel to Puno and Lake Titicaca (overnight homestay near floating islands)
Day 16-19 Cusco, Machu Pichu, Sacred Valley, Aguas Calientes, Rainbow Mountain
Day 20-21 Return to Lima and fly back to Portland