Huchuy Qosqo - Machu Picchu
DAY ONE: Cusco – Tambomachay - Pumamarca
We will pick you up in Cusco at 6:00 AM for the 30 minute drive to Tambomachay (3700 MASL). Our hike begins at an ancient Inca trail used by the Inca people to travel to the Sacred Valley, Pisac, and probably also to Machu Picchu. From this point, we will be able to observe panoramic views of Cusco. At this high altitude, we can see llamas and alpacas eating the Andean grass named Ichu, small cacti, and some bromeliad bushes known locally as Puyas. To the left of the path, we can also see ancient Incan terraces used by farmers in order to maximize the area in which to grow potatoes.
We will take a gentle walk down to the trail, then it curves sharply uphill to reach a pass of near 4180 MASL. When we reach the top of the pass Queullococha Lake comes into view, after which the trail takes us up over a second pass (4300 MASL) and into the high open country. From here we can see another lake - Lake Qoricocha (Golden Lake) and after another 30 minutes we will reach our lunch spot. After eating, we continue our journey for 3 hours until we come to the highest point at 4380 MASL. From this height, it is easy to see Chincheros, the lake of Piuray, and some snow-capped sacred mountains such as Salkantay and Veronica. It is a one and a half walk downhill to Pucamamarca, where we spend the first night.
DAY TWO: Pumamarca – Huchuy Qosqo – Chinchero - Cusco
Wake up call is at 6:00 AM, and after having breakfast we leave our campsite for the 1 hour walk towards Huchuy Qosqo. It is a gentle walk to the end of the valley, and we will walk through Leon Punku, a narrow canyon, to see a recently restored trail with wooden bridges and some stairs. Here there is an abundance of native trees and bushes, and we enjoy panoramic views of Lamay Valley, Calca, and the sacred river of the Incas, Willcamayo. The Inca site of Huchuy Qosqo (3450 MASL), has been recently restored by archaeologists. From this place there is a clear view of many beautiful mountains such as Chicon, Pitusiray, Sawasiray, Waccaywilca and Veronica - ancient Apus (mountain spirits), respected and venerated by the locals most of whom are Quechuas (Inca descendents). We will have a two hour guided tour through this interesting Inca complex. Afterwards, we continue hiking for 3 hours, break for lunch, then trek for a further couple of hours until we reach Lamay. Here, we take a private transfer to Ollantaytambo, then catch the train to Aguas Calientes (Machupicchu town), where we will rest in a hostel for the night.
DAY THREE: Aguas Calientes – Machu Picchu – Cusco
We get up very early in the morning (around 4:00 AM) to set off on our hike to Machu Picchu, which will take about an hour and a half to reach the gate. Another option is take a bus from town, the first bus leaves at 5:30 AM and the ride takes 25 minutes. After we pass the gate control, we will have a guided tour which lasts approximately two and a half hours, after which we say goodbye to our guide and you can choose to explore Machu Picchu by yourselves, climb the Huayna Picchu Mountain, or Montaña Machupicchu. By 3 or 4 PM you will need to return to the town and pick up your luggage from the hostel, then take the train back to Ollantaytambo, where our driver will be waiting to bring you back to Cusco.
- Transportation: Cusco – Tambo Machay
- Transportation: Ollantaytambo - Cusco
- Tickets: entrance to Huchuy Qosqo
- Transportation: Lamay - Ollantaytambo
- Train tickets: (Ollantaytambo-Machupicchu – Machupicchu – Ollantaytambo)
- Guide: professional English/Spanish speaking
- Horses: to carry tents and cooking equipment
- Horses: to carry personal equipment (max 6 kilos per person)
- Cook: in charge of meal preparation
- Meals: 1 breakfast, 2 lunches, 2 dinners, snacks
- Equipment: tents (2 people per tent), dinner tent, biodegradable bathroom tent, kitchen tent, tables and chairs, table settings, first aid kit, oxygen bottle
- Breakfast on the first morning
- Sleeping bag rated to at least -15ºC (can be rented for $20 USD)
- Travel and health insurance
- Tips for your staff
- Trekking poles
We recommend that you bring:
- A backpack with changes of clothes for the whole period of the trek
- Rain jacket or poncho (plastic ponchos can be purchased in Cusco)
- Strong footwear, ideally trekking or sport shoes
- Snacks: biscuits, energy bars, chocolate, fruits, muesli, etc.
- Flashlight and batteries (batteries drain more quickly under cold conditions)
- Toilet paper
- Camera, film, and batteries
- Hat to protect you from the sun, rain, and cold
- Insect repellent, minimum recommended 20% DEET