A picture of a group of volunteers from Projects Abroad out on a dig during their archaeology volunteering in Peru.

Incan and Wari Archaeology Volunteering in Peru

Work with experienced archaeologists on ancient Incan and Wari excavation sites in Peru

At a glance

  • Work at excavation sites in two national parks and learn from experienced archaeologists as you dig up the past.
  • Help us uncover and protect ancient Incan and Wari structures and artefacts.
  • You’ll live in the city of Cusco, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and stay with a local host family.

Start Dates: 

Completely flexible dates

See Dates

Minimum Duration: 

One Week


Anyone aged 16 or over can join

Is Archaeology volunteer work in Peru right for me?

Are you fascinated by history and discovering what life was like centuries ago? Do you want to get actively involved in digging up the past? Then our Incan & Wari Archaeology Project in Peru is perfect for you!

This project will take you directly into the world of ancient South American societies and cultures. You’ll learn from experienced archaeologists, who will teach you everything you need to know about the subject. This is especially useful if you are studying history or anthropology, and want to add hands-on experience to your CV. 

You don’t need any previous experience or qualifications to join. We have archaeologists and other staff on hand to guide and supervise you. You’ll also attend regular workshops and lectures, and visit museums.

This project runs throughout the year, and you can join at any time from a minimum of two weeks. Please be aware that certain activities may not be available during different seasons. Most of our work at excavation sites takes place during the dry season from May to September. During the wet season from October to April, we focus on indoor research.

What will I do on the Incan and Wari Archaeology Project?

You’ll work with experienced archaeologists as they continue doing research to discover more about the ancient Incan and Wari civilisations. These are the main areas you’ll focus on:

  • Assist with the discovery and registration of new archaeological sites
  • Maintain archaeological sites through clearing and maintenance tasks
  • Raise awareness about the importance of protecting cultural heritage in local communities
  • Attend workshops and presentations to learn more about archaeology work in Peru

Our archaeological activities in Peru are largely determined by the weather. Dry season differs greatly from wet season, as some activities are prohibited by the rain. You will focus on these main activities during your project:

Assist with the discovery and registration of new archaeological sites

An exciting part of archaeology is uncovering the unknown. During your time in Peru, you’ll get involved with exploring and registering new sites. During the registration of new sites, you’ll use GPS and photography to record your findings. You’ll take part in the mapping of the sites to further current research, and you can also assist with returning artefacts to the ground after research, if needed.

Maintain archaeological sites through clearing and maintenance tasks

You’ll work alongside experienced archaeologists on-site. They’ll teach you how to perform various archaeological activities and supervise your work. They’ll also explain the importance of cleaning and maintaining current sites. You’ll help with this by clearing weeds and overgrowth on walls and pathways, and prepare clay for mortar used to restore ancient ruins. You’ll also get your feet dirty stomping around in mud! We use the mud to paint walls and paths, and to cap walls. The mud helps preserve and restore the old constructions.

Raise awareness about cultural heritage and importance in local communities

One of the aims of this project is to further research into the ancient civilizations of South America. We do this through talks and presentations. This will help local people have a better understanding of the way people used to live. It will also allow us to share knowledge about the importance of protecting their history for the next generation.

Attend workshops and presentations to learn more about archaeology in Peru

Our staff organise regular workshops and presentations for all of our Archaeology volunteers. In these sessions, you’ll listen and learn as archaeologists talk about topics like bones, and how to reassemble ceramic artefacts. We encourage you to ask questions and take notes.

Where you work on the Incan and Wari Archaeology Project


Our Incan & Wari Archaeology Project in Peru is based in Lucre, a town in the Lucre Valley which is a 40-minute drive from Cusco. Cusco was the capital and most important city of the ancient Incan Empire, and the Lucre valley itself contains many known and undiscovered ruins from ancient civilisations.

Our projects are based in the Pikillaqta National Park and in the Sacshayhuaman Archaeology Park.  

Airport pickup, flights and visas

When you arrive at your respective airport, a member of Projects Abroad staff will be there to meet you. You can find more detailed information on arrival airports, orientation, and visas on our Peru Arrival Procedures page.

A typical day on the Incan and Wari Archaeology Project

A typical day on this project starts at 8:30am, and ends around 3:30pm, Monday to Friday. However, you’ll finish around midday on a Friday.

Your activities can vary greatly, and are also weather dependent. The supervising archaeologist will decide what you do for the day. These activities can include mapping sites, working on excavations, or conducting indoor research.

At the end of a busy day, you will return to your host family for dinner. This is a great way to experience the Peruvian way of life for yourself, and let the family share their food, traditions, and culture with you.

Your evenings will be free for you to explore the town of Cusco. You can walk along streets lined with beautiful architecture from many centuries of civilisation. You can also brush up on your Spanish with street vendors, and we encourage you to try as much of the local food as possible.

On weekends, you can explore the green mountainous landscapes where llamas roam in their natural habitat. You can also plan a trip to some of Peru’s famous attractions like Machu Picchu.

Aims & Impact of the Incan and Wari Archaeology Project

The aim of the Incan and Wari Archaeology Project is to advance the research being done into ancient civilisations, and actively preserve cultural heritage sites in Peru.

We’re working to uncover and protect new archaeological sites and artefacts. We need the help of volunteers like you to do this.

In addition to helping preserve culture and history for the next generation, you’ll gain a unique insight into South America’s ancient civilisations. This kind of work experience can give you the skills to pursue a career in history, anthropology, or archaeology. You’ll learn directly from experienced archaeologists dedicated to their work.

Join us to do archaeology volunteer work in Peru and help protect and preserve their history.

Projects Abroad volunteers can be seen measuring out an excavation site as part of their archaeology volunteering work in Peru.

Volunteering for professionals

This project is also perfect for qualified professionals. With your skills backing up our ongoing efforts, we can make an even bigger difference together. We'll match you to the placement where your skills are needed most.

This means you can share your training and and knowledge with others. You can work hand-in-hand with our partner organisations and local communities to support sustainable development.

If you have relevant skills or qualifications, read more about how you can make use of them with Projects Abroad.

Measuring our impact

Our projects work towards clear long-term goals, with specific annual objectives. Every volunteer and intern we send to these projects helps us work towards these goals, no matter how long they spend on our projects.

Every year we take a step back and look at how much progress we've made towards these goals. We put together a Global Impact Report, which documents our achievements. Find out more about the impact our global community of volunteers, interns and staff make, and read the latest report.

Food and accommodation

You'll stay with a host family in Cusco. They will welcome you into their home, eager to share their customs and have you teach them about your own culture. We believe that this is the best way to immerse yourself in the culture of Peru and have a truly unique experience.

We will always try to let you live alongside at least one other Projects Abroad volunteer or intern at the same host family. Your room will be modest, but comfortable, clean, and safe.

Your programme fee includes three meals a day.

Find out more about our accommodation.

Leisure activities and free time

Peru is a vibrant country with a mix of activities for every kind of volunteer. Whether you’re into arts, culture, history, or nature, there’s sure to be something for you!

One of the biggest attractions of Peru is the Inca history. There are awe-inspiring archaeological sites like Coricancha, Tambomachay, and of course, Machu Picchu.

Over a weekend, you can take a trip to the village of Pisac, where you can browse bright, eye-catching textile markets. Don’t miss out on seeing the llamas and alpacas too!

There are also lively restaurants, the perfect place to spend an evening relaxing and enjoying local cuisine, like ceviche.

We run a variety of projects in Peru so you’ll likely meet many other volunteers on your trip. It’s the perfect opportunity to connect and travel as a group. However, you’re welcome to travel independently if you prefer. 

Safety and staff support

Your safety and security is our prime concern. We have many procedures and systems to ensure you have the support you need to enjoy your trip with peace of mind. Our Projects Abroad staff are available 24 hours a day to help, and will be on-hand to make sure you settle in well at your accommodation and placement. If you encounter any problems, they will be available to help at any time.

Find out more about safety and backup.

When you apply you only pay €295, which comes off the total price. Flexible payment options and fundraising advice available.

Looking to do more than one project? Call us on +353 (0)1 571 5080 to see if we can offer a discount.

Please choose a Duration and Start Date to continue.

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