The Inca Trail is by far the most famous trek in South America and is rated by many to be amongst the top 5 treks in the world. Over just 26 miles (43 Km) the Inca Trail combines beautiful mountain scenery, lush cloud-forest, subtropical jungle and, of course an outstanding mix of Inca paving stones and ruins and tunnels. The final destination of the trail can not be beaten: Machu Picchu, the mysterious “Lost City of the Incas”.
We’ll pick you up from your hotel between 4:30-5:00am and travel to Km 82. You’ll arrive to Km 82 at about 7:00am and you´ll stop for a breakfast prepared for you by your guide. After a delicious breakfast we’ll go through the first Inca Trail checkpoint to begin our trek (please make sure you have your passport with you to enter the Inca Trail). The first 2 hours of the trek are relatively easy as we make our way to our first Inca site, Patallacta which was an Inca checkpoint for the approach to Machu Picchu. From Patallacta it’s another 2 hour hike to our lunch stop. After lunch we will hike for another 2 and a half hours until we reach the first night’s campsite (Ayapata, 3300 meters = 10826 ft). On this last stretch we pass through 2 small communities. If you want to buy any energy drinks or snacks you can do so here, you can also buy any essential items such as batteries that you may have forgotten. We’ll get to our campsite by 5:00 pm and after settling in for a bit you can relax and have a drink and something to eat with your porters, chef and guide. By 7:30 your dinner will be ready, afterwards you can get some well deserved rest.
Your porters will wake you up early with a hot cup of coca tea to get you ready for the day. Today is our longest day and we will start with an early wake up. We’ll hike for roughly 4 hours to the highest pass of the trek, Dead Woman’s Pass (4215 meters = 13828ft). On reaching the pass we’ll stop for a short break to enjoy the views before setting off again to descend to the next valley (Pacaymayu Valley – Hidden River). It’s another hour and a half down the side of the valley to our lunch spot and a chance to refill our water bottles. After lunch we begin ascending again to the second pass of the trek. It’s 2 hours to the pass and along the way we’ll stop at a small Inca site (Runcu Raccay) and see two huge waterfalls cascading down the opposite side of the valley. After the 2nd pass, it’s another hour downhill to reach the magnificent Inca site, Sayacmarca (unaccessible village). We’ll stop here for a rest and have a quick tour of the site and then watch the sunset over the Vilcabamba mountain range. It’s then just another 20 minutes until we stop for the night at our second campsite Chaquicocha (Dry Lake, 3600 meters = 11811 ft). After dinner, if you’re not too exhausted, we can do some star gazing.
Completing day 2 and beginning day 3 certainly deserves a pat on your back! We begin early again, waking up at 6:30am to begin what is commonly believed to be the most beautiful day of the whole Inca Trail. We hike for 2 hours inka-trail-4days-inca-trail-camino-inca-cusco-machu-picchu-3along what is known as Inca flat (gradual inclines) and begin to enter the peak of the jungle, which is also known as the cloud forest. As we walk we will have the opportunity to see the beauty of the Salkantay snow capped peak and a fantastic panoramic view of the Vilcabamba mountain range. Towards the end of the Inca flat we begin to make our way up to the last peak at Phuyupatamarka (3600 meters) from where we get great views overlooking the Urubamba river. Down the valley we get our first views of Machu Picchu mountain but the site is still hidden from view. From Phuyupatamarka it´s a 3 hour walk down a flight of steps to our last campsite, close to Wiñay Wayna (Forever Young). Wiñay Wayna is the most spectacular Inca site on the trail after Machu Picchu and the most popular campsite because of it´s proximity to Machu Picchu. During the descent we visit 2 Inca ruins, Phuyupatamarka (The Town in the Clouds) and Intipata (Terraces of the sun). We arrive at our campsite around 1:00pm to have lunch and then relax for the entire afternoon so you’re relaxed and ready for your final day at Machu Picchu. Your guide will give you a small talk at around 4:30pm and you will visit the inca ruins of Wiñay Wayna spending about an hour and a half there. We will explain the significance of the site and combine all the information given during the trek so you’re fully prepared for your visit to Machu Picchu the following day.
We like to spoil our guests as we enjoy our last feast with the porters and chefs. It’s an Inca Trail tradition to organize a ceremony in the evening to introduce the team to the tourists once again and to thank them for the great job done (if you wish to provide tips for them then you can do so now). It is advisable to go to bed at a reasonable time in order to get up in the early hours of the morning to arrive to Machu Picchu at the crack of dawn.
Wake up time is at 3:30am. We’ll eat breakfast at 4:00am and wait at the checkpoint to be one of the first to start trekking when they open the gates at 5:30am. We’ll wave goodbye to our porters and chef and then it’s all inka-trail-4days-inca-trail-camino-inca-cusco-machu-picchu-4steam ahead to the Sun Gate (Inti Punku). From here we have spectactular views of the mountains and Machu Picchu in all its glory. We reach the Sun Gate by 6:30am and then it’s just another hour´s trek down a stairway to reach the lost city of the Incas. As we approach Machu Picchu the views of the city just get better and better and at about 7:40am we reach the final checkpoint and enter Machu Picchu to begin our 2 hour guided tour. After the tour you’ll be given your bus tickets to make your way down to Aguas Calientes and you’ll have between 3-4 hours to explore on your own. At about 1:30pm we’ll meet at a restaurant in Aguas Calientes to have our last lunch together and you’ll be given your train tickets for your return journey to Cusco. We´ll arrange to meet 30 minutes before your train departs and then all go together to the train station. If you like there is an optional hike up Huayna Picchu mountain which takes about an 45 minutes to reach the summit. From here you can enjoy fantastic views of Machu Picchu and the surrounding scenery. If you’re interested in this, please book it in advance for $70.00.
USD $ 750.00 per person. Add to car this item:
Student Discount: US$20 (Requires Student Card to qualify)