Four days, 45 km, and a gold mine of Inca archaeological sites. Discover Cusco, along the Inca Trail and visit Machu Picchu experiencing the local life that contemplates nature, the traces of Peruvian history and culture.
This trek will awaken you with the imposing history of the Sacred Valley of the Incas and the Citadel of Machu Picchu. Whimsical trails will lead you to enjoy breathtaking landscapes and witness the changing ecosystem from the high Andean mountains to the heart of the Machu Picchu Amazon Rainforest Park. You will go from high altitudes with cold temperatures to warmer ones in the dense cloud forest, accompanied by beautiful rainbows. On the 4th day, you’ll visit Machu Picchu with a guide who will reveal all the secrets of the Inca culture and this mythical place ranked among the 7 World Wonders.
Creating incredible memories!
Day 1: Cusco – km 82 – Llactapata – Wayllabamba – Yuncachimpa
Day 2: Yuncachimpa – Warmihuañusca pass – Pacaymayu – Runkurakay pass – Chaquicocha
Day 3: Chaquicocha – Phuyupatamarca – Wiñayhuayna
Day 4 : Wiñay Wayna – Machu Picchu – Cusco
We leave Cusco (3350masl) at about 5.30 am. Along the way, you’ll be able to see extensive farming land and villages, which still keep their ancient traditions and customs. Km 82 is the meeting point with the rest of our team: porters and cooks, and the beginning of our trek. After a short hike, we get to the Llactapata site: old Inca terraces. Soon after this, we get to Wayllabamba (3100masl), and we gradually ascend to our first campsite: Yuncachimpa (3300masl).
Dawn at the Inca Trail offers a pleasant atmosphere, which will allow us to discover the natural habitat of the Yuncachimpa forest, where you can observe and photograph its flora and variety of birds. Next, the trail takes you to Lulluchapampa (3,850 m) and then to the “Warmihuañusca” pass (4,200 m). Here, you’ll be able to admire the imposing mountain scenery of Machu Picchu Park and Nevado Veronica. Further on, we’ll find ourselves on a deep descent into the valley of Pacaymayu (3,500m). Next, the Runcuracay pass (3,950m) will allow us to discover impressive Andean forest mountains and the high mountainous jungle in the Yunga region of the Peruvian Andes. Later, you visit Sayacmarca (3,600 m): a small town made up of a labyrinth of narrow streets, squares, houses, terraces, fountains, etc. You spend the night at the Chaquicocha camp.(3,650 m).
This will possibly be the most beautiful day of the Inca Trail. You’ll notice a constant change in the ecosystem along the hike. As we advance, we will be able to see and visit the site of Phuyupatamarca, known as the city above the clouds (3,600m), impressive for its circular walls and its ingenious system of aqueducts that still feed the liturgical fountains. Our path leads us to Wiñayhuayna (2650m), dominated by a vast complex of Inca terraces and urban housing constructions separated by a large staircase leading to a ceremonial site. We are spending the night at Wiñayhuayna campsite.
After our breakfast (4:30 am) and with torches in hand, we head to the Sun Gate (Inti Punku) at 2,780m, where the sunrise appears by surprise over Machu Picchu and Huayna Picchu. The sunset and the company of our bilingual guide will allow you to discover the Inca culture in the territory of the Tahuantinsuyo (4 regions of the Inca Empire), as well as the cults and ceremonies that took place in the numerous temples and sacred places present in the citadel. After the guided tour, you will have time to enjoy the magic of the historic sanctuary and to take some photos. Then, we return to Aguas Calientes to have lunch (not included).
Afterwards, you board the train to Ollantaytambo, and from there our driver takes you back to your hotel in Cusco.
Restaurant Apu Pitusiray, Sacred Valley, Ollantaytambo: an original Peruvian cuisine at Ollantaytambo town.
Tinkuy, Sanctuary lodge restaurante: a buffet lunch experience while you`re visiting MachuPicchu!
Train services included
If you are looking for an adventure on your way to Machu Picchu at an unbeatable price, the Peru Rail Expedition train has just what you need, with all the on-board services you could wish for.
(*) The carriages of the Peru Rail Expedition train are infused with the designs of the Inca culture, making them the perfect way to begin your journey to the citadel of Machu Picchu. Peru Rail Expedition gives you the opportunity to enjoy the incredible scenery and take amazing panoramic photographs of a journey like no other.
Optional services to be hired
Note: The group of Porters are only present in the trekking part.
On Demand – Vistadome Train
The “Vistadome” train offers you breathtaking views during your journey to Cusco, offers fashion shows, dinners, a refined service and premium travel conditions. In addition, the carriage is built with large windows that offer unparalleled panoramic views and the possibility to take beautiful photographs. The Vistadome also has air-conditioning and heating, and ergonomic leather seats that are very comfortable after so many hours of walking.
The Vistadome offers you a first class service, which will allow you to immerse yourself in the Andean culture, through the landscapes, the music, the dance and even the food carefully prepared with local ingredients.
On Demand – Hiram Bingham Train
The Hiram Bingham Train category is optional and it is a luxury service of the Orient Express, operated by the company “Peru Rail”. You will experience an exceptional journey. The Hiram Bingham carriages are distinguished by their blue and gold colour, their warm and cosy interior and their elegant upholstery. The service includes 4 carriages, 2 restaurant carriages, as well as a panoramic view carriage with bar. Brunch and dinner on board are also included.
For the optional services, contact our staff to check availability.
What we recommend that you bring
Optional: walking sticks or poles with rubber covers required in order not to damage the Inca Trail.
1. During high season (May to September), it is difficult to ensure the exact date of entry, due to the restrictions set by the Ministry of Culture to limit the number of entries to the Inca Trail and Machu Picchu; therefore, the date of entry to the Inca Trail could vary for one or two days; then we will adapt the program so you can make the most of it.
2. Entrance tickets to Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu mountain: To hike up Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu mountain, it is required to book well in advance, because the entrance tickets are limited to a certain number of people daily. Therefore, we’ll take care of the reservation and confirm your entrance with an additional charge of 75 USD for adults and 55 USD for students.
Note: If you wish to visit any of the extra mountains, please inform us in due time before purchasing the entrance tickets to the Machu Picchu citadel.
3. Student card: To qualify for the 40 USD student discount, you must have a valid ISIC student card when you book, not just when you arrive in Cusco! It must be valid for the current year. When booking, we need a picture of the card sent to the contact email. The Ministry of Culture is strict when verifying student cards. If you do not have a valid ISIC student card, you will be charged the regular price.
4. Tips: for porters, cooks and guides tips are always welcome. Porters are also very grateful for a small donation, such as school clothes or supplies for their children.
5. Cancellation policy: For any cancellation; the costs already incurred by the travel agency will be at your expense. For more details on the cost of cancellations by certain participants, please refer to articles 6, 6.4 and our cancellation policies in the sales terms and conditions.
For more information, you may wish to check or consult our FAQ, Safe and Healthy Travel, and Flexible Booking with Explorandino.
Entrance to the Inca Trail and Machu Picchu citadel having been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1983. Entrance to Machu Picchu is limited to 500 places per day (200 tourists and 300 staff cooks, guides and porters). Thus, it is important to book at least 6 months in advance, especially during the high season (between May and September). During the low season, between December and January, it is possible to still have some places available before your visit. However, it’s always best to book in advance.
If you are interested in this trek, please contact us for more information.
Trek with the Local Pros!
An incredible experience! Our guide Christian is a local expert and we were in good hands the entire trek. I enjoyed learning history from Christian and he knows so much about the land and how people use natural remedies for ...
Ausengate 7 Lagunas
Our guides were so friendly and were very patient when teaching us Quechua words. They brought a lunch for us that was absolutely delicious and very filling. They were also so attentive to food restrictions and allergies. Would recommend to friends
I was originally scheduled for the Inca trail hike but ended up doing the sacred valley and Machu Pichu tours due to some last minute schedule issues. The tour operator was very accommodating in setting me up with hotels, train tickets and entry passes. Guides were knowledgeable and they...
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