Inca Trail Hike – Inca Trail Peru
Inca Trail Hike to Machu Picchu is one of the most popular trails in South America if not in the world. The path runs through breathtaking landscapes amidst the cloud forest and Andean mountain pass.
This path is full of cobble stones. It was widely used by the Incas to reach the world’s most spectacular archaeological site and one of the New 7 Wonders, Machu Picchu.
Inca trail trek has recently seen an increased number of tourists. To limit any adversity to the fragile ecosystem and to the trail the government has restricted access to 500 people a day.
Our Classic Inca Trail tours service is perfect for individual travellers, families, groups of friends and even for honeymooners. Smaller groups benefit from the expertise of an experienced and professional guides. While each participant will have their own porter to carry up to 7 kilos of their personal gear.
We offer daily Inca Trail to Machu Picchu departures. (except in February, when the trail closes for maintenance).
Please note: We recommend booking your Inca Trail Hike at least 6 months in advance. This is one of the most popular treks in the world.Most tour operators offer this, which is why permits sell out very quickly.
Do take a moment to check our reviews on Trip-advisor.
DeparturePick up from your Hotel
Departure Time5:00 AM.
Return TimeApproximately 6:00 PM.
Dress CodeWarm clothes, including jacket, fleeces, gloves, scarf and beanie/touk
IncludedAccommodationEntrancesFirst aid kit and emergency oxigenMealsPick up from your HotelProfessional GuideTransportation
Not IncludedWalking Stick
Day 1: Cusco – Ollantaytambo – Km 82 – Llactapata – Wayllabamba
We will pick you up from your hotel in Cusco early in the morning. We will drive in our private vehicle along the Sacred Valley to Ollantaytambo.
Here you can do some last minute things like snacks as we will be stopping here for breakfast.
Once we are ready we will head to the trailhead near Ollantaytambo, Piscacucho (also known as Kilometre 82).
At Kilometre 82, you will have to present your Inca trail permit along with original passport and (if you are paying a student rate, your student cards).
We will then cross the Urubamba river where our trek would begin. Here, we will start our hike through a typical dry forest ecosystem.
We will be hiking for about 6 kilometres in roughly 3 hours to the first archaeological site, Llactapata.
An easy hike of around four kilometres through farmland that will take us to the village of Wayllabamba, where we will set up our camp for the night.
- Hiking distance: 12 kilometres / 8 miles.
- Minimum altitude: 2700 meters / 8990 feet.
- Maximum altitude: 3100 meters / 10,000 feet.
- Altitude at camp: 3100 meters / 10,000 feet.
- Approximate nighttime temperature: Around 10 Celsius.
Day 2: Wayllabamba – Llulluchapampa – Dead Woman’s Pass – Pacaymayo
Today’s journey is the most challenging day of the trek. We will be starting very early in the morning.
Most part of the hike will be through small hamlets and farmlands as we would be entering subtropical forest. We will stop for lunch in Llulluchapampa.
From here, a steep ascent will take us up to the highest pass on the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu (Warmi Wañuska / “Dead Woman’s Pass”, at 4200 meters / 13,779 feet).
We will then start descending for about 600 meters (1980 feet) over 3 kilometres (1.8 miles), passing through humid cloud forest as far as our next campsite at Pacaymayo.
- Walking distance: 11 kilometres / 6.8 miles.
- Minimum altitude: 3100 meters / 10,000 feet.
- Maximum altitude: 4200 meters / 13,780 feet.
- Altitude at campsite: 3600 meters / 11,810 feet.
- Approximate nighttime temperature: Around 6 Celsius.
Day 3: Pacaymayo – Sayakmarka – Phuyupatamarca – Wiñay Wayna
After breakfast we will be starting our trek to Runkurakay, once a checkpoint on the royal Inca highway to Machu Picchu.
From here, we will continue to Sayaqmarka, one of the most beautiful Inca sites on the entire Inca Trail Peru.
We will stop for lunch here. After lunch, we will be trekking through a beautiful landscape as would be entering a cloud forest filled with several species of orchids and hummingbirds.
From here, we will walk for another hour to Phuyupatamarca (“Town in the Clouds''). This is the third highest point on the Inca trail to Machu Picchu, at 3680 meters (12,070 feet).
On this section of the trail, you will be getting fine views of Mount Salkantay. From this pass we will be doing a three hours downhill hike into the forest.
We will stop at Wiñay Wayna, an old Incan ruin. We will be spending the night here where you will find facilities for hot showers and buy a cold beer here!
The inca ruins are situated on a short walk from the campsite. The Quechua name of this ruins means “forever young”. This site is described as the most beautiful archaeological site on the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu.
- Walking distance: 12 kilometres / 10.5 miles.
- Minimum altitude: 2,670 meters / 8760 feet.
- Maximum altitude: 3,900 meters / 12,800 feet.
- Altitude at campsite: 2,670 meters / 8760 feet.
- Approximate nighttime temperature: Around 12 Celsius.
Day 4: WiñayWayna – Inti Punku – Machu Picchu – Aguas Calientes – Cusco
We will start hiking towards the Sun Gate (2730 meters / 8792 feet) early in the morning to witness the sun rising over the iconic Machu Picchu. Here, we will be spending some time here enjoying the spectacular views.
After this we will walk downhill along the final section of the trail to the spot from where you would be able to click the classic picture postcard photograph of this ancient city.
Our guide will walk you around the ruins for 2.5 hours explaining the significance of each site in the complex and the Inca culture. After this guided tour, you will have some time to walk around independently.
Those who have the energy can opt to climb Huayna Picchu hill above the ruins (2720 meters / 8923 feet). It would take around 45 minutes to reach the top. We recommend you to get a permit to climb Huayna Picchu in advance, when booking your Inca Trail.
Finally, we will meet up again with the rest of the group and go down by bus or on foot to the small town of Aguas Calientes, where we will have time to have lunch before boarding the train to Cusco.
Please note:We offer Expedition/Tourist Class train service (to Ollantaytambo, from where we will take a bus to Cusco).
Those wanting a more flexible train timetable can coordinate directly with us.
- Walking distance: 8 kilometres / 5 miles.
- Minimum altitude: 2400 meters / 7870 feet.
- Maximum altitude: 2720 meters / 8920 feet.
PLEASE NOTE:The local authorities won't accept any booking without the detailed information of the trekker and full amount for your entrance to the citadel.
They restrict the access to only 500 people a day. Therefore, in order to guarantee your place on the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, you must provide us with a scanned copy of your passport and a non-refundable deposit.
Your reservation will only be confirmed when we have your entrance ticket in our hands. If your passport number changes before you start the tour, you must relay this information to us or risk losing your booking. You must take your original passport with you on the trail.
The times mentioned in this itinerary are approximate. Walking times will depend on the progress of the group and the guide may change lunch spots and campsites, depending on the progress of the group. Each guide has their own preferred route which may not necessarily correspond exactly to the route described here.
Itineraries may be subject to change depending on time of booking and campsites provided by the Ministry of Culture (the institution responsible for managing the Inca Trail).
The above trekking itinerary is our preferred option for this route. However campsites used during the Inca Trail are subject to change depending on availability of spaces. It is allocated by the Ministry of Culture, which is responsible for managing the campsites used by the trekking companies authorised to operate within the Machu Picchu Historical Sanctuary.
This is particularly relevant for the last campsite, as Wiñay Wayna is the closest campsite to Machu Picchu (just 2 hours from the Sun Gate overlooking the ruins). There is not enough space at Wiñay Wayna for all Inca Trail groups, and the next campsite is Phuyupatamarca, which is a five hour walk from Machu Picchu.
If you would like to spend an extra night in Aguas Calientes please let us know, so we can change the date of your train ticket to the following day. Hotels costs and costs associated with returning to Machu Picchu the following day will be considered in addition to the cost of the trek.
Please also note that your entry ticket to Machu Picchu is valid for one day only. If you wish to visit the ruins on a second consecutive day you will need to purchase another ticket.
Inca Trail Hike Includes:
- Pre trek briefing.
- Transfer from your hotel in Cusco to the trailhead.
- Inca Trail Permit. (includes entry to Machu Picchu, but not to Huayna Picchu)
- 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. If you require greater comfort during the trek we can hire you an inflatable mattress. (eg. Thermarest)
- Cook and Cooking equipment. (Assistants are provided for larger groups)
- One textile snack bag per person, to avoid the usage of plastic bags that contaminate our environment.
- Toilet paper.
- Toilet tent is NOT included the Inca Trail part of the route, because we use facilities provided by the Ministry of Culture.
- Meals as indicated in the itinerary (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.
- Porters (for equipment and personal items) They carry camping equipment, food and kitchen utensils. We provide duffel bags at your briefing for your personal items (up to 7 kg per person). If you wish to take more, you can hire an extra porter.
- Dining tent with camp tables and chairs & Kitchen tent for the cook to prepare meals.
- Bio-degradable personal hand soaps.
- Tents for our staff to sleep in.
- First aid kit including emergency oxygen bottle.
- Bus down from Aguas Calientes – Machu Picchu.
- Train ticket (Expedition service) from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo.
- Private transport from Ollantaytambo to Cusco.
- Lunch on the last day is included in this itinerary.
Inca Trail Hike Does Not Include:
- Breakfast on the first morning.
- Dinner on the last night.
- Entrance to the thermal springs.
- Entry to Huayna Picchu. ($60)
- Tips: please note that our agency staff is well paid so please feel free to tip or not as you wish.
Recommended to carry on Inca Trail Hike:
- 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.
- Rain gear (jacket and pants if available) or rain poncho. Plastic ponchos can be bought for about $1 in Cusco .
- Strong footwear, waterproof trekking boots recommended.
- Warm clothes, including jacket, fleeces, gloves, scarf and beanie/touk. Thermal clothing is also recommended, especially for sleeping.
- Camera, films and batteries. (batteries consume more quickly under cold conditions)
- Hat or cap to protect you from the sun, rain and cold.
- Sun block.
- After-sun cream or hydrating cream for face and body.
- Insect repellent – minimum recommended 20% DEET – although no malaria risk has been reported.
- Snacks: biscuits, energy bars, chocolate, raw fruits, muesli, etc.
- Non-disposable canteen (Nalgene type) and water for the first morning.
- We advise you to bring water sterilizing tablets in case you collect water from streams.
- Your own medical kit with any special medications that you might require, paracetamol, second skin for blisters etc.
- Small towel or sarong.
- Bathers/swimsuit. (if you intend on swimming in hot springs)
- Cash – sufficient for snacks.
- Original passport & ISIC. (International Student Identity Card) if you have one.
- Walking sticks or poles. (we can hire these to you. Please note poles with metal tips cannot be carried into Machu Picchu and should be left at your hotel on the final day)
- Available discounts these discounts are not cumulative .
- Check Availability Here.
- Deluxe Sleeping Bag suitable for -15deg. $5.00 per trip day
- Walking stick lightweight aluminium $2.00 per day, per stick.
- Inflatable mattress $5 per day.
- Aguas Calientes Extra Day & Upgrade.
PRICE $USD PER PERSONPrivate Group
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