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Cusco & Inca Trail

Overview
Destinations
Itinerary

Day 1: Cusco arrival & dinner show

Upon arrival at the Cusco airport, a GOTOPERU representative will meet you for the private transfer to your hotel located at the historic center.

Arriving mid-day you will have the rest of the day to relax and explore. Since the capital of the Inca Empire is located at 11,000 feet in elevation, during this first day you may want to take it slow to acclimatize. However, this is a great chance to wander about the main square, with its many cafes and stores, or even visit a museum, we recommend visiting the “Museo del Café”.

Dinner Buffet Show, Immerse yourself in Peruvian culture during an exciting performance of dances from the Coast, Andes and Jungle of Peru with a delicious buffet dinner including ceviche.

Day 2: Rainbow mountain full day tour

Very early in the morning, we will pick you up from your hotel in Cusco to make the trip to “Cusipata” district ( aprox 2hrs south of Cusco) where we will stop for 30 minutes to have breakfast. From then we continue for 1 hour until we reach the starting point of the trek. Here, we will pause for a quick explanation on how we will be carry out our tour. We will start walking at the foot of the Ausangate mountain range. It´ll take approximately 1 hour and 45 minutes to the highest point of the Rainbow Mountain (“Vinicunca”, also called “Montaña de Siete Colores” or Rainbow Mountain, is a mountain in the Andes of Peru with an altitude of 16,000 feet above sea level). During the trek we will have the opportunity to appreciate South American camelids (including alpacas, llamas) . Upon reaching the red hill, we will have time to soak in and take pictures of the beautiful scenery. We will continue our journey with a 1-hour descent, then return to the District of “Cusipata” where we can enjoy lunch. Following lunch, we will return to Cusco.

Day 3: Inca tral day 1

We’ll pick you up early in the morning from your hotel, which can be in Cusco, Urubamba, Ollantaytambo, or your homestay in our porter community, to take you to Km. 82, the start of the Inca Trail. Once we arrive, we’ll take about 30 minutes to ready our backpacks, use the bathrooms and greet the team of cooks and porters which will make our mountain adventure possible.

Before starting the trek, we’ll pass through the trail’s control station to check the personal information in your passport against that on your trail permit. We’ll start the trail by hiking along the banks of the Vilcanota River, passing by small local villages and ruins sites scattered along the length of the valley until we arrive at our first major archaeological site, LLACTAPATA, an important Inca settlement with still-intact constructions. Afterwards, we’ll hike to our lunch spot to recover our energy. After a fortifying lunch, we’ll continue up the Wayllabamba Valley surrounded by the local flora and walking in a cool, pleasant climate until we reach our first campsite at the village of WAYLLABAMBA (2950m – 9678feet).

First night of camping.

Day 4: Inca trail day 2

We’ll wake up to birdsong and the peaceful murmuring of the nearby river, taking our time to enjoy the refreshing countryside air. We’ll next gather in the dining tent, where our chefs will be waiting for us with a hearty breakfast, and later begin our hike to the highest point of the journey, Warmiwañuska Pass (4,215m – 13828Feet). This section will be a personal challenge for each hiker, but reaching the top is well worth the effort; getting up here means that you can accomplish anything!

The ascent is gradual, and the first section is covered in vegetation until halfway up the mountain (Llulluchapampa, 3,800m). We’ll rest a while here, taking in the fresh, cold air of the Andes. After here, the views are all of the Andean puna (highland mountain”, where the mountain is rocky and without much vegetation due to the altitude. However, we will come across the grass known as paja, still used by many high-mountain communities for roofing material. The views steadily improve as we climb, revealing different mountain ranges, and after a hard hike we’ll reach the highest pass of our trip, with rewarding views of mountains and valleys. If we are lucky, we’ll see condors circling above this pass, the ancient birds of the Peruvian Andes which guard over us as we hike. Getting up to Warmiwañuska is an accomplishment that you will never forget.

We gently descend from here, still glowing from our accomplishment and appreciating the simple things in life. The trail takes us to our campsite in the Pacamayu Ravine. At dinner we’ll share stories with our group and with our Wayki porters as well, feeling the satisfaction and peace furnished by the night sky and surrounding mountain peaks.

Day 5: Inca trail day 3

This is one of the longest days, but the natural beauty more compensates. We’ll pass by archaeological centers, intact Inca trail, tunnels, a wide diversity of microclimates, inter-Andean valleys, and cloud forest full of birds and hundreds of kinds of orchids.

After breakfast, we’ll gradually climb up to Runkuracay, an archaeological site half way up the mountain with a strategic view towards the valley. After our visit here, we’ll finish the last climb to the second highest pass on the trail, the Runkuracay Pass (3,800m – 12467feet), where we’ll see how the cloud forest spreads like a green blanket between the valleys. From the pass, we’ll descend towards the valley until we arrive at the next archaeological site of Sayacmarca (3,600m – 11811feet), known as “The Dominant Town” due to its commanding position above the surrounding valleys. We continue descending to our lunch spot at Chakicocha, and afterwards hike through unimaginable scenery, with countless orchid species, tunnels and foundations as deep as 10 meters. This splendid trail takes us over the third pass of the route and down to the archaeological site of Phuyupatamarca (3,665m – 12024feet), from where you’ll see Machu Picchu Mountain and the Vilcanota River, valley and glaciated mountain range.  If the weather cooperates, we’ll also see Salkantay (6,274m -20583 feet), the most sacred mountain of the region.

The trail zigzags down many staircases from Phuyupatamarca through thick vegetation towards Intipata and Wiñaywayna (2,650m – 8694 feet), two Inca sites near Machu Picchu but with their own impressive architecture. We’ll spend our last night of camping in the pleasant, humid climate of Wiñaywayna. This is also our last night with the cooks and porters.

Day 6: Inca trail day 4

Excited and eager to arrive, we’ll get up early this morning to start our hike. After saying goodbye to our, chefs and porters, we’ll start our hike at 5:30am. It’s a brisk but refreshing one-hour hike to our first goal, the famous Intipunku (Sun Gate) at the entrance to Machu Picchu.  Reaching the Intipunku is a unique experience that will stay with you the rest of your life.

After taking in the splendid views we’ll descend along the trail into Machu Picchu itself, stopping at the highest part of the ruins to take the classic photo and shots of the exquisite architecture. We’ll descend to the entrance gate to register and check our bags before starting on our guided tour inside the citadel. Your guide will help you to better understand the magic and mystery that still live within the walls here. The tour will last two to three hours, once finished the explanation in Machupicchu citadel the group will go down to Aguas calientes town by bus. In the afternoon we will take the train to return to Ollantaytambo and then transportation to Cusco.

Day 7: Cusco departure

A GOTOPERU representative will meet you at your hotel for your transfer to Cusco airport for your domestic flight to Lima.

Prices

Prices are based on double occupancy.

Economic Tourist Superior Luxury
$749USD $849USD $999USD $1249USD

*If you have a specific hotel we will be happy to prepare a personalized quotation for you.

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7 days
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Cusco & Inca Trail

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