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Choquequirao to Machu Picchu Trek – Choquequirao Trail Peru

If you are looking for a real adventurous experience you must consider the Choquequirao to Machu Picchu Trek popularly known as Choquequirao Trail Peru. This lesser known Incan site is located in southern Peru. It is an archeological complex that nestles at 3200 metres above sea level (10498 feet) between the foothills of the ‘Nevado Salkantay’.

Often referred to as the ‘Sacred Little Sister’ of Machu Picchu. This complex is similar in structure but bigger than the lost city of the incas. Both were built at the same time. However, the Archaeological site of Choquequirao was the last refuge of the Incas after the conquerors invaded the Inca city. Thanks to his hidden location all covered by dense vegetation it remains intact. Only 30% of the ruins is open to tourism now.

The Route to Choquequirao runs through the canyons of Apurimac surrounded by snow capped peaks and dense rain forests. Choquequirao Trail Peru has unreal new views at every turn. It is not surprising the place is gaining popularity as “New Machu Picchu”. Government had plans to make a cable car in Choquequirao to enhance tourism in the place.

Tour operators offer this tour as an alternative to the Inca trail for the ones who dare this hard but worthy experience. If you like adventure you definitely must go on this trek!

Check out our four days Choquequirao Trek Itinerary.

Do take a moment to check our reviews on Trip Advisor.

  • Destination

  • Departure

    Pick up from your Hotel
  • Departure Time

    5:00 AM.
  • Return Time

    Approximately 6:00 PM.
  • Dress Code

    Warm clothes, including jacket, fleeces, gloves, scarf and beanie/touk
  • Included

    First aid kit and emergency oxigen
    Pick up from your Hotel
    Professional Guide
  • Not Included

    Walking Stick


We will pick you up from your hotel at Cusco around 5:30 am. We will be having a 4 hour drive in our private vehicle to the small village of Cachora (2,700 meters / 8856 feet). Here we will meet up with our crew who will be preparing the horses, our camping equipment and cooking equipment to begin our hike, while you make some last purchases (in case you need it). We will be heading towards the Apurimac canyon for about 2½ hours. Arriving at the natural viewing point of Capuliyoc (2915 meters / 9560 feet), we will have time to enjoy the fine views of the canyon and surrounding mountains as we have lunch. After a good meal, we will descend for about 3 hours to our first campsite at Chiquiska, deep in the canyon. On our first evening we will serve you an exquisite Peruvian dinner, after which we will have enough time to rest and relax for the rest of the night.


Early in the morning, we will be having a good breakfast to have the energy you’ll need for today’s journey. We will start the hike by heading down into the canyon for about an hour to Rosalina's Bridge across the Apurímac River (1550 meters / 5085 feet). From there, we will begin a four hour climb to Maranpata (2925 meters / 9595 feet), where we will stop for lunch and to enjoy our first proper glimpse of the Choquequirao archaeological site. The entire archaeological complex has remains still hidden under the cloud forest vegetation, which is the natural habitat of butterflies, deer, condors, and the spectacled bear. From Maranpata we will continue for about two hours until we arrive at Choquequirao. We will be camping close to the ruins and spend the afternoon relaxing and exploring.


Once we pick up our sleeping bag and have breakfast, we will begin our day heading to the ruins of Choquequirao. Today we will have time to explore the entire complex of Choquequirao (3033 meters / 9950 feet), we will also be visiting the llama sector, where the Incas decorated the walls of their agricultural terracing with geometric representations of llamas, the place is about 20 minutes from the main site of Choquequirao. Then, we will be continuing our trek climbing the hillside for about 40 minutes and have the chance to enjoy the good views of the terraces of Pinchayunuyoc, before descending as far as the Blanco River (1990 meters / 6539 feet). Here, we will have lunch and enjoy a relaxing swim in the river’s clear waters. We will camp at this idyllic spot and rest for the night for tomorrow’s journey.


Today we will hike up the mountain for about four hours to a remarkable and peaceful place called Maizal (3500 meters / 11,480 feet), where we will share some time to contemplate the surrounding scenery. This is considered one of the highlights of the trek, the incredible views worth all the effort put into getting to this remarkable location.


We will have to depart early today around 7am. Today’s journey will allow us to perceive an amount of lush green vegetation and to know different types of native flowers such as orchid plantations. For the following section we will pass for the original Inca highway until we spot the ancient mining sites that have been worked for centuries while we ascend through the Victoria Pass (4150 meters / 13,610 feet). From here, it will be possible to see condors flying overhead. Now we will be at the heart of the Vilcabamba mountain range, one of Peru’s most striking and beautiful ranges. From the range, it is a 3 hour hike down to the village of Yanama (3650 meters / 11,970 feet), where we will stop for lunch and spend the rest of the day here, relaxing and resting.


Today we will walk from Yanama to Ccolpa (2850 meters / 9350 feet). We will be hiking along a local road, we’ll need to leave very early for this walk. We will pass along a flat trail followed by a gradual ascent to Yanama Pass at 4,660 meters (15,285 feet). From the high pass we will have to descend as far as Pucara. We will have a short break for lunch and rest before continuing the trail to the village of Ccolpa. Ccolpa is a traditional village where all the residents only speak Quechua. We will spend the night here and have the possibility to share with locals and know more about the customs.


Today we will hike through high jungle, we will catch sight of different types of plants, flowers, birds, butterflies, and be able to pass delightful waterfalls. We will share lunch on the riverbank before continuing our hiking to Santa Teresa (1800 meters / 5900 feet), at this point we can go by bus (if the group opts to do so). In Santa Teresa it will be possible to bathe in the local hot springs and enjoy the place.


After breakfast, we will trek up for about 3 hours to the archaeological site of Llactapata.

An extensive and well-preserved Inca settlement that leaves you with intrigue.

Next, we will continue for another two and a half hours to the hydroelectric plant, making a stop for lunch nearby. After lunch and a short but deserved rest, we will take the train to Aguas Calientes, also known as Machu Picchu Pueblo. We are finally closer to the city of Machu Picchu.

Here we will stay in a comfortable place, in rooms with private bathrooms. Once we have had time to rest in Aguas Calientes, we have prepared a celebration dinner in an elegant restaurant right in the heart of town, to celebrate that we finish this wonderful trek all together.

If the group is tired towards the end of the trek, there is also the option to take a bus from La Playa to the hydroelectric plant, from where it is a 2½ hour walk through the forest along the train tracks to Aguas Calientes, observing a variety of flora and fauna along the way. This is also an excellent option because you will get a glimpse of the mystical structures of Machu Picchu in the distance.



On this last day we will finally get to visit the magnificent ruins of Machu Picchu (2453 meters / 8045 feet).

The plan is to leave the hotel very early around 5:30 am, so we can be one of the first groups to visit the ruins (entrance fee is already included), but we can set off a little later on if you are too tired. Your guide will allow some flexibility in this regard, after discussion with the group the night before. We will spend the day visiting what has been hailed as one of the Seven New Wonders of the World.

Machu Picchu is situated on a forested mountain peak amid spectacular scenery, our visit will begin shortly after sunrise, you will receive a complete guided tour of the site, you will learn about the historical and cultural aspects of this lost city.

Here you can also see the Huayna Picchu from where you have an extraordinary and panoramic view of the precincts, but unfortunately we won’t be able to make it, for us to climb we need to reserve our entrance with 6 months anticipation because of the amount of visitors it has per day.

In the afternoon we will take the train to Ollantaytambo, in the Sacred Valley of the Incas, from where we will be heading back to Cusco by road.

Tour Location

Notes on the itinerary
  • The times that are provided on this itinerary are approximate.
  • Trekking times depend on how the group progresses.
  • There is plenty of adventure to be had along this trek.
These Available discounts are not cumulative
  • .Students: US$ 29 students require a valid International Student Identity Card. Please note that Youth Travel Cards are not valid
  • Teenagers: US$ 20 up to 16 years of age, passport copy required for all bookings
  • Children: US$ 46 up to 10 years of age, passport copy required for all bookings
Choquequirao Trek to Machu Picchu Includes:
  • Pre trek briefing.
  • Pick-up from your hotel in the morning of trek departure.
  • Transport from Cusco to the trailhead at the beginning of the trek in private car.
  • Entry fee to Choquequirao and  Machu Picchu. (Huayna Picchu $15 extra)
  • English/Quechua/Spanish speaking professional guide. (you will have an assistant guide for groups over 6 people)
  • Tents – 2 people in a 4 person tent which allows for greater comfort, and also storage of backpacks.
  • Basic foam mattress.
  • Toilet tent.
  • Toilet paper, pack-in &pack out.
  • One textile snack bag per person, to avoid the usage of plastic bags that contaminate our environment.
  • Bio-degradable personal hand soaps.
  • Horses (for equipment and personal items) including horsemen. They carry camping equipment, food and kitchen utensils. We provide duffel bags at your briefing for your personal items. (up to 7 kg/15lbs per person)
  • 1 emergency horse which can be ridden if you are feeling ill or if are a little slower.
  • Tents for our staff to sleep in.
  • First aid kit including emergency oxygen bottle.
  • Bus up and down from Aguas Calientes – Machu Picchu.
  • Train or equivalent luggage from Hydroelectric station to Aguas Calientes.
  • Train ticket (Expedition service) from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo.
  • Private transport from Ollantaytambo to Cusco.
  • We will be serving lunch on the last day of the trek.
  • 1 night accommodation in Aguas Calientes in a basic Hotel El Mistico.
  • Huayna Picchu entrance fee: if you would like to climb this mountain an additional fee of US  $16 per personal applies Breakfast on the first morning
  • Entrance to the thermal springs.
  • Sleeping bags – If you haven’t got a sleeping bag or you don’t want the hassle of bringing one all the way to Peru with you, then we have sleeping bags for hire.
  • Tipping is completely optional.
  • Cook and Cooking equipment. (Assistants are provided for larger groups)
  • Meals (optional vegetarian food). Our professional cooks prepare meals that incorporate elements of the western diet and also traditional Peruvian delicacies. (Please communicate with your guide/cook during the trek if you have a preference for certain types of dishes) Salads, if served, are washed in boiled water.
  • Dining tent with camp tables and chairs & Kitchen tent for the cook to prepare meals.
  • Celebratory dinner in Restaurant Indio Feliz in Aguas Calientes.
  • Dinner on the last night.
  • Others: hot water every morning and evening for washing purposes / boiled water to fill in your water bottle every morning and night, and at lunch time if requested with enough time ahead.
What we recommend that your bring:
  • A light day pack with a change of clothes for the whole period of the trek – prepare for a vast range of changes in temperature.
  • Sandals or plastic slip on thongs are also good to give your feet a chance to breath in the evenings if you wish to carry them.
  • Warm clothes, including jacket, fleeces, gloves, scarf and beanie/touk.
  • Sleeping bag. (we can hire these to you)
  • Hat or cap to protect you from the sun, rain and cold.
  • Sun block.
  • After-sun cream or hydrating cream for face and body.
  • Snacks: biscuits, energy bars, chocolate, raw fruits, muesli, etc.
  • Non-disposable canteen (Nalgene type) and water for the first morning.
  • Your own medical kit with any special medications that you might require, paracetamol, second skin for blisters etc.
  • Small towel.
  • Swimsuit (if you wish to go to the hot springs.
  • Cash in  soles and/or US$.
  • Original passport.
  • Strong footwear, waterproof trekking boots recommended.
  • Flashlight/headlamp and batteries.
  • Camera and batteries. (batteries consume more quickly under cold conditions)
  • Water container and water for the first morning. Important notice: plastic water bottles are no longer allowed into Machu Picchu. Plastic water containers (ie. Nalgene) or metal ones are recommended.
  • Optionally: water- sterilizing tablets in case you pick up water from streams or rivers along the route. Otherwise, we provide filtered boiled water, which is safe to drink and has not reported any health problem so far.
  • Original International Student Identity Card (in case you have applied for a student discount.
  • Optional: walking sticks or poles. (rubber covers required in order not to damage archaeological sites)
How to book Choquequirao Trek to Machu Picchu? If you would like to make a reservation for this program, please write to us.
  • Once you have chosen your tour, please read the Booking Terms & Conditions, as your booking is subject to these terms.
  • In case your reservation is confirmed, a money deposit will be requested to secure your reservation.
  • Once we confirm the deposit reception, your booking is confirmed. A Service Confirmation Form will be sent to you including all the details of your program.
In case you have any doubts, queries or require additional information, please contact us, we will be very glad to assist you.  

Optional Extras

  • Sleeping bag USD 5 per day.
  • Inflatable mattress USD 5 per day.
  • Walking Sticks USD 2 per day.


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Person2345-67-89-12Per Person USD
$ USD19001630145513551135955X
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