Machu Picchu is situated in the region know as the Vilcabamba. This area extends between the Apurimac and Urubamba rivers where the 45km Inca trail lies within.
Visitors from all around the world come to Peru, not only to see Machu Picchu, one of the new Seven Wonders of the World, but also to hike the Inca trail.
The Inca Trail links a range of stunningly preserved Inca ruins. Along the way the natural scenery is breath-taking, with views of snow capped mountains and the lush cloud forest vegetation.
1) Our Classic 4 day Inca Trail Trekking to Machu Picchu tour runs from March through to January.
Please note that the Inca trail is closed for the month of February. Due to recent regulations the Inca Trail is only limited to 500 trekkers a day, including tour guides, porters and cooks. For this reason we highly recommend you book the Inca trail at least 3 - 6 months in advance, especially during the peak season (May to September). The trek permits are issued on a first-come-first served basis until the permits have all been sold out. Fortunately for those who have missed out on the Inca trail option, we do have a number of alternative routes to offer that can be booked a month or so in advance.
2) Due to high tourism unfortunately now if you are arriving to Machu Picchu from the 4 days Inca Trail or by train the same day then it is becoming increasingly difficult (in fact almost impossible in the peak months) to climb Huayna Picchu (the mountain overlooking all of Machu Picchu for the best view) the same day. You will need to spend the night in Aguas Calientes (the town of Machu Picchu) and return early the following day.
Day 1: Cusco/ Huallabamba
Starts with a nice and early pick-up at 6am from your hotel and a 3 1/2 hour bus journey to kilometer 82, where we will begin the trail. On the way we will stop at the town of Urubamba where you can buy walking sticks and perhaps anything you have forgotten. Once we arrive to KM82 we will prepare for you a hot breakfast. To begin the trail we first cross the river Vilcanota and follow the trail along, passing through a little village then to the ruins of the Inca hill fort of HuillcaRaccay. After 7 hours (13km) of hiking, tonight we spend the night in Huallabamba.
Day 2: Huallabamba/ Pacamayo
What is going to be a physically tough day of accent, we hike 11km. Climbing up from Wayllabamba for a few hours through the beautiful forest, until we reach the meadow of Llulluchapampa (3680m). A quick tea break and we are heading up again to Abra de Huarmihuañusca (meaning 'Dead Woman's Pass'), our highest (not to mention the hardest) point of the trail at 4200m. After celebration of having completed this section, the decent from the pass is steep but not difficult, so be careful! Once we reach the valley floor we set up our second night’s camp in Pacamayo.
Day 3: Pacamayo/ WiñayWayna
Today is an easier but longer hike of 16km. From Pacamayo it takes 1 1/2 hours to climb to the ruins of Runkuracay. From the ruins the view of Pacamayo valley is all worth it once the hard part is over. From here we continue our trek to the second pass of Abra de Runkuracay (4000m). Now walking along a cobbled path we again begin a deep decent until we reach Sayacmarca (meaning Inaccessible Town). Before reaching the 3rd pass we walk through astonishing cloud forest full of orchids, hanging mosses, tree ferns, flowers and not to mention the Inca tunnel. The 3rd pass is at 3700m, then soon to be at the most spectacular ruin so far; Phuyupatamarca (meaning Town in the Clouds). Following this its time to descend thousands of stairs - again be careful, especially of your knees! After this long day we camp the night in WiñayWayna, here you will have the pleasure of a hot shower and a restaurant/ bar.
Day 4: WiñayWayna/ Cusco
4.00am Breakfast on our last day then we are hiking while its’ still dark so don't forget your flashlight. The trail today contours a mountainside and into the cloud forest. We stop for a short time hopefully to see the sun rise at our final pass -Intipunku (meaning 'Sun Gate'). Afterwards get ready for the unforgettable experience observing Machu Picchu. We will enjoy a guided tour of the ruins, then it’s your choice to climb HuaynaPicchu which will take about 2 hours to the top and back down again. Please note that there is a limit of 400 people per day to climb Huayna Picchu and quite often Inca Trail hikers will arrive too late to the ruins to sign up. Finally, if your not staying in AguasCaliantes tonight then you will prepare for your train journey back to Cusco.
- Pick up from your hotel in the morning of trek departure
- Private bus transfer from your hotel to the beginning of trek point
- Entrance fee Machu Picchu
- Porters (to carry tents, food, cooking equipment and sleeping mats).Personal porter extra (please read below for details).
- Cooks for: 4 Breakfasts, 3 Dinners, 3 Lunches (food includes: pancakes, omelets, soups, fresh fruit, avocado, pasta, chicken, fish, meat, rice, all rich in carbohydrates and suitable for trekking. Hot drinks: Hot chocolate, coffee, tea, including coca leaf tea which is excellent for altitude!)
- Tea time/ Snacks: coffee/ tea, popcorn and biscuits
- Hot water every morning and evening for washing up, and drinking water if you need it.
- Bilingual & professional tour guide
- Tents for 2 people (but has capacity for 3), so there is plenty of space for your backpacks
- Accommodation for crew
- Sleeping mats, table(s) & chairs, kitchen tent
- Short bus from Machu Picchu to AguasCalientes (return)
- First Aid including spare Oxygen
- 3 nights in a tent
- Backpacker train to Cusco – Ollantaytambo (Vistadome train available upon request
- Sleeping bags (we have for rent at $4 per day and they are good for -15)
- Lunch on the last day after the guided tour at Machu Picchu
- Entrance to the Hot Springs in AguasCalientes
- Tips for guide, cook and porters
What to bring:
- Original Passport (same one you made the reservation with)
- Waterproof hiking shoes or boots recommended
- Backpack and/or Daypack (You may need one for the horse and one to carry. We do have duffel bags available for hire if need)
- Sleeping bag for up to -8 degrees Celsius (available for rent at $4 per day)
- Warm clothing (layers recommended)
- Thermals (woolen hat, socks and scarf are recommended)
- Flashlight Camera and film
- Sun protection (hat, sun screen, sun glasses)
- Insect repellent -minimum recommended 20% DEET (no malaria has been reported
- Rain jacket or Poncho
- Water proof back pack cover
- Water bottle
- Water purifying tablets (in case you want to pick up water from the rivers)
- Personal medical kit
- Passport and ISIC card if you are a student (originals required)
- Money for souvenirs, drinks and tips (easier in smaller change)
- Toilet paper
- Snacks such as chocolate, muesli, energy bars, dried fruit etc.
- Travel towel
- Swim suit
- Walking poles if you think you will want them
Options and Rentals:
- Single tent supplement $10 per day
- Extra night in AguasCalientes $35 (or email us for alternate options). We will just need to arrange your train back to Cusco for the following day. Please tell us before final booking process.
- Sleeping bag rental ($4 per day)
- Vegetarian meals
Personal Porters can be hired at $85 for the 3 days of hiking to help carry your belongings. Regulations allow them to carry no more then 16kgs. Usually this is plenty to share with your trek buddy. Please remember that even with a personal porter you will need to still have a day pack for essential items (at least one between two people) to carry your water, snacks, camera, clothes for the day etc. Important: you must decide if you want the porter services in advance when making your trek reservation since we need to also purchase a permit for the porters.
Take advantage of our $40US discount for students if you hold a valid International Student Identity card (ISIC). You must send us a scanned copy of this when making your reservation and present the origional to the entrance control office. Failure to do so will result in a loss of permit and denied entrance to the Machu Picchu.
If you are traveling single we will pair you up for sleeping arrangements with someone of the same sex. If you prefer to have your own tent the surcharge is $10 per day.
When you go on a trek it is best that you leave your unwanted trek items with your accommodation prior to the trek. All hostels/ hotels are equipped to hold extra luggage. Abroad Trekkers will not be held responsible for any lost or stolen items. Luggage could also be left with Abroad Trekkers if need. Please do not leave anything value in your bags that you will leave behind in storage.
Trek prices are not stated on this website due to forever changing government and park fee prices. Please email us for more information.