Eclipse Tour Destination: Peru & Chile (Northbound)
Journey from Peru’s Sacred Valley of the Incas to the ancient mountaintop city of Machu Picchu. Explore the rich Inca and Spanish colonial past in historic Cuzco. Enjoy an optional excursion to see the famed Nazca Lines from the air. And as the centerpiece of your adventure, travel to our special viewing site in the foothills of the Andes – close to four of the world’s largest telescopes – to stand for 2 minutes and 15 seconds in the shadow of the Moon.
TravelQuest invites you to join us in the summer of 2019 for a once-in-a-lifetime South American odyssey with a dramatic focal point: the total eclipse of the Sun on July 2. Our itinerary weaves together two dimensions of this fascinating continent: spectacular landscapes with unmatched views – to the horizons and skyward – in remote areas of Chile and Peru; and a legacy of engineering, architecture, art and philosophy that includes a tradition of astronomical observation dating back two millennia.
Our 11-day adventure begins in the seaside city of La Serena, Chile, where you enjoy the beaches before heading inland to experience the eclipse from our expertly chosen viewing site. You then fly north to the archaeological gem Cuzco, onetime capital of the Inca Empire – and from there carry on to other remarkable monuments and ruins among the Andean peaks, ending on the emerald terraces of the so-called Lost City of Machu Picchu. Your journey concludes in cosmopolitan Lima, where we explore the historic city center with an expert guide and take in a traditional equestrian show. And as an epilogue to this unforgettable adventure, you can opt to fly over Peru’s arid southern coast to view the stunning Nazca Lines from the vantage point of the gods.
La Serena weather prospects for total solar eclipse viewing
by TravelQuest Eclipse Meteorologist Jay Anderson
The fact that TravelQuest’s eclipse-viewing site is close to four of the world’s largest telescopes – Cerro Tololo, La Silla, Gemini South and Las Campanas – tells you we’re likely to encounter minimal cloud cover, even though the 2019 eclipse falls in the middle of the Southern Hemisphere’s winter. We’ve selected a site that’s tucked into a protected valley in the Andean foothills. It’s far enough inland to escape any coastal cloudiness that might occur on the big day, and deep enough in the mountains to erode any passing clouds from larger-scale weather systems. Satellite measurements show an average daytime cloudiness of just 35% in July, making our site one of the best in the region. Based on past weather statistics, we know that 25 days of the month are liable to be either sunny or partly cloudy, with most of those clouds in the morning hours, well before the arrival of the lunar shadow.