Classic Inca Trail( 9 Days / 8 Night )
A classic Cusco itinerary with hiking at elevation. Considered one of the most spectacular trekking routes in the world, the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu (40 km or 25 miles, 3 days of travel) attracts thousands of adventurers every year who are seeking its special combination of history and nature. Walking the same paths that the Incas once traveled and gazing over the same landscape of incomparable beauty, you can easily imagine yourself transported into the past. The route is sometimes paved with stones and sometimes cut directly into the steep mountain slopes, and it offers ever-changing sceneries of amazing mounting ranges, thriving cloud forest, and mysterious Inca archaeological sites. It winds its way to reach Machu Picchu, the ancient religious site of the Incas, and rewards hikers with the opportunity to see the sunrise with an unforgettable view of the city of Machu Picchu.
Day 1: Arrival to Lima + Overnight in Lima
Day 2: Flight to Cusco + Afternoon City Tour + Briefing for your Inca Trail + Overnight in Cusco
Day 3: Sacred Valley Tour+ Overnight in Cusco
Day 4: Free Day in Cusco + Overnight in Cusco
Day 5: Inca Trail (4D/3N) + Overnight camping
Day 6: Inca Trail (4D/3N) + Overnight camping
Day 7: Inca Trail (4D/3N) + Overnight camping
Day 8: Inca Trail (4D/3N) + Guided Tour of Machu Picchu + Return to Cusco + Overnight in Cusco
Day 9: Flight back to Lima + Return flight home
In an effort to preserve and protect the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, the Peruvian government has taken drastic measures in the past few years to limit the amount of people hiking the Trail. No more than 500 people are allowed to start the Inca Trail trek per day. This number includes all support staff (ie. porters and guides) and it is very tightly controlled. Once this limit of 500 people is reached, the Trail is effectively closed off for the day and no further bookings can be made by any agency.
DAY BY DAY ITINERARY Classic Inca Trail
Day 1: Arrival to Lima
Our representative will meet you at the Lima airport to take you to your hotel. * An extra day in Lima can be added upon request. Please contact our travel specialists for activities in Lima.
Day 2: Fly to Cusco & Afternoon City Tour (B)
Following your one-hour flight to Cusco, located at 11,100 feet above sea level, you will be met and transferred to your hotel. You will have the remainder of the morning to rest and freshen up. It’s best to take it easy this morning to let your body adjust to the altitude. Both lunch and dinner are on your own today. After lunch, you will set out on a grand tour of Cusco, the former capital of the once-vast Inca Empire. We walk Cusco’s impressive Plaza de Armas and visit both the Spanish cathedral and Inca sun temple, Qoricancha. Next we set out to visit the ruins above the city that were considered an essential part of the ancient capital. We start from Sacsayhuaman, where Inti Raymi, the Festival of the Sun, is held during the Summer Solstice; Tambomachay, the Temple of the Sacred Waters, which is a marvel of hydraulic engineering and Q´enqo where we will see the remains of a ceremonial site used for fertility rites and for celebrations of the solstice and equinox.
Day 3: Sacred Valley Tour (B, L)
After breakfast, we set out in the Urubamba Valley, also known as the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Our first stop will be a visit to Pisac market, with a wide variety of artisan crafts. You will have the chance to see the many different products that the Sacred Valley produces and do some unique shopping for souvenirs. After the market, we head deeper into the Sacred Valley and visit the town of Ollantaytambo, still inhabited by the locals in much the same way as it was during the time of the Incas. We then return to Urubamba, where you will have a chance to break for lunch and recover your energy to continue with our tour. After lunch, we head out to the bustling market-town of Chinchero. The main sight to see at this location is a Catholic church, with fine paintings from the Cusquenian School. * An overnight at the Sacred Valley can be added upon request. Please let us know if you like us to add activities.
Day 4: Inca Trail-Day 1- Trek from Piskacuchu to Wayllabamba (B, S, L, D)
We depart from the Cusco train station to Piskacuchu (km 82), where we start our trail. The Inca Trail begins at the Urubamba River. It first climbs alongside the ruins of Llaqtapata, between terraces planted with corn and quinoa, then heads towards the Cusichaca Valley and the town of Wayllabamba (2,750 m or 9,023 ft). This is the last populated area on the route and is located at the confluence of the Cusichaca and Llullucha rivers. It is also the last place to find provisions. Here we will camp for the night.
Day 5: Inca Trail-Day 2– Trek from Wayllabamba to Pacaymayo (B, S, L, D)
After breakfast you continue the hike, and from here on, there is only open countryside. The path continues to climb through the Llullucha Valley, where you can see various ecological zones and microclimates. Warmiwanuska Pass is the highest point of the route at 4,200 m/13,780 ft. From here, you can see the Runturacay ruins and the Pacamayo River. Once over the cold, windy pass, the trail descends sharply to the Pacamayo River valley and its stands of trees and cacti. This is where our campsite is located. Then we enjoy dinner and a well-deserved rest.
Day 6: Inca Trail-Day 3– Trek from Pacaymayo to Wiñaywayna (B, S, L, D)
The trail then begins to climb again for about 45 minutes, providing hikers with an idea of the magnificence of Inca engineering, as it becomes a path that is perfectly paved in white granite slabs and follows the zigzagging line of the cliffs and mountainside. For several hours the trail winds among the mountains until it reaches a second pass at 3,950 m (12,959 ft). Along the way, we will visit the Runcuracay archeological site. We finally descend almost 1,600 m (5,250 ft) to the ruins of Sayacmarca and the mysterious cloud forest. The dense vegetation here conceals exquisite examples of Inca architecture: Phuyupatamarca and Winay Wayna (3 hours further down) with their spectacular system of terraces, Inca way stations called “Tambos”, and observation platforms rising out of the tree fern forest with dozens of orchids growing among their polished stones. We will spend our last night here.
Day 7: Inca Trail-Day 4– Trek from Wiñaywayna to MachuPicchu (B)
We begin the final leg of the trek to the lost city of Machu Picchu. First we will hike to Inti Punku (Sun Gate), where we will take in an awesome panoramic view of Machu Picchu. The final descent is a quick 30 minutes through the Inti Punku gateway to the citadel, where we will enjoy a 3-hour guided tour of Machu Picchu, the Lost City of the Incas. After a short bus ride to Aguas Calientes you will have time for lunch on your own and then take the train back to Cusco.
Day 8: Return to Lima / Flights Home (B) eturn to Lima / Flights Home (B)
Your journey to Peru winds to a close as you are transferred to the airport in Cusco for the flight back to the capital city of Lima. Flight time will depend on your return flight. * While in Lima, we highly recommend adding culinary activities such as cooking classes and tasting dinners in the best restaurants of Latin America. For more information, please view our culinary site: taste-of-peru.com and ask our travel specialists for more information. An extra day in Lima can be added upon request.
*Private tours, other levels of accommodations and train options available upon request.
As price depends on each passenger choices, please contact us to send you an updated price based on your specific request. Please send us the following information and we will respond within 24 hours with your updated price.
- Number of people in your party
- Level of accommodation (3 Superior,4,5*). Please see options
- Private or Group Tour
- Train choice. Please see options
- Adding options: if you like to add day tours, extra days, meals, etc
- Need domestic or international flights?
- Have a special request (ie: special diet, wheelchair, children, senior, etc)
Participants need to be in good physical health and condition. It is good for travelers who are in condition to hike up to seven hours, with breaks in a single day to enjoy the Inca Trail. To fully enjoy an Inca Trail adventure, we advise passengers to get into an exercise program for their own safety and enjoyment. If a passenger suffers from any medical condition, we advise him/her to consult a physician prior to joining an Inca Trail Expedition. Drinking lots of liquids is a must.
About What to Pack for trekking in Peru:
Remember to take your original passport on the Inca trail because without it you will not be able to do the hiking. Take only the necessary items for the 4 day trek (8-12 Kilos), the rest of your luggage can be left at your hotel in Cusco (most of hotels has a storage where to keep it until your return). Bring a personal sleeping bag, warm Jacket or sweater, rain gear (specially from November to April), T-shirts, shorts, long pants, layers. Back pack, Day pack, trekking shoes, sandals, Sun hat, wool hat, sunglasses, Water bottle, flash light, Insect repellent /Sunscreen, Water Purification Tablets (optional), Hand Towel, toilet paper. Extra US$50 changed in soles for any emergency and for tipping the porters
About Machu Picchu Entrance Tickets As the popularity of Machu Picchu has increased in the last few years, and in order to preserve the ancient paths of Machu Picchu, the Peruvian Cultural Institute (INC) has restricted the number of people that could enter Machu Picchu to 2,500 people per day. This means that, once the 2,500 tickets are sold out, no further entrance tickets will be available. Also, please note that to avoid a secondary market for these tickets, all tickets are issued with the name of the passenger, his/her passport number, nationality and date of birth. Therefore, tickets are non refundable and non transferable.
About Huayna Picchu Tickets
Entrance tickets to Huayna Picchu are no longer free. They are now US$ 12.00 per person. There are two scheduled visits per day, with a limit of 200 people per visit (total of 400 per day). If you are interested in hiking Huaynapichu, we will need you to let us know at the same time you book your trip since Huaynapichu tickets need to be purchased in conjunction with Machu Picchu tickets.
- Expedition train from Aguas Calientes to Poroy (Cusco). Other train options available upon request: Vistadome and Hiram Bingham
- Bus from Machu Picchu to Aguas Calientes
- Expert leadership / guides & support personnel
- Accommodations: 1 night in Lima, 4 nights in Cuzco, 3 nights Camping.
- Meals as noted (B = Breakfast, S = Snack, L = Lunch, D = Dinner, T = Tea Time Snack). Plentiful, nutritious meals during the trail (Vegetarian option available). We can add any meals upon request
- Land excursions as noted including entrance fees (BTG, Cathedral and Qoricancha, MachuPicchu and Inca Trail permit)
- Private Transportation: Lima Airport/Lima Hotel, Lima Hotel/Lima Airport, Cusco Airport/Cusco Hotel, Cusco Hotel/Inca Trail start point (Km. 82), Train Station/Cusco Hotel, Cusco Hotel/Cusco Airport.
- Cook (In charge of meal preparation)
- Group porters to carry camping equipment and food
- Porters to carry your backpack (6 kilos/12pounds) 2 people in each 3-person-capacity tent
- Mattress (sleeping pad)
- Dinner tent, special biodegradable bathroom tent, kitchen tent, tables and chairs, table settings, first Aid kit, including emergency oxygen bottle.
WHAT’S NOT INCLUDED?
- Airport taxes: Local ($5-6) and International ($31) departure tax of payable in local currency by each passenger at Lima International Airport upon departure (if applicable)
- International and domestic airfares, usually quoted separately
- Excess baggage charges
- Medical immunizations
- Insurance of any kind: mandatory evacuation insurance; suggested cancellation insurance, interruption, baggage loss, damage and delay
- Tipping & Gratuities (Guides $4 per person per day / Drivers $1 per person per day)
- Items of a personal nature (clothing, sodas, liquor, snacks, laundry, etc.)
- Visas. Please be advised that some citizens other than Canadians and US may need visa to travel to Peru. Please advise us of your nationality to help you or check with the Peruvian Consulate
All of our tours are offered in both Group and Private services; however, as we like to maintain control of the quality of our tours, even our group tours include PRIVATE transfers. This is important, as when you get picked up; you will go directly to your hotel without having to drive around the city to drop off other people in their hotels. Transportation is just for you.
Destinations Tours.- Private Transfers + Group Cultural Tours
Special Interest Tours.- Private Transfers + Private Special Interest Activities + Group Cultural Tours
Destinations Tours.- Private Transfers + Private Cultural Tours
Special Interest Tours.- Private Transfers + Private Special interest Activities + Private Cultural Tours
We offer all level of accommodations. When creating an itinerary it would be important to know which your preferred level of accommodation is. Please be sure that at all levels our recommended hotels offer great service and nice comfortable rooms. Our team has personally tried all our recommended hotels.
3-star Superior.- These are 3-star that should really be considered has 4-star Hotel. Nice location, great rooms and charming decoration. Excellent service, with restaurant, room service, business centre, laundry, etc. Buffet breakfast. Best value. Perect for someone looking for an inexpensive option and still have some superior services.
4-star Hotels.- Good location, very nice rooms, great decoration and excellent service. This hotel includes more services such as room service, business center, laundry, spas, more room features, etc. Some have gourmet restaurants. Buffet breakfast. Perfect for someone looking for some luxury and special services and do not need a 5-star option.
4-star Suites.- Some 4-star hotels have suites that offer the same room features of a 5-star option. Perfect for someone looking to upgrade from a 4 star standard room and get more space and features.
5-star Hotel.- What you usually imagine a 5-star hotel is. Great location, luxury accommodations and excellent service. Gourmet restaurants, spas, room service, business center, etc. Perfect for someone looking for a 5-star service but do not need the 5-star Deluxe option.
5-star Deluxe.- These 5-star deluxe hotels offer ultimate luxury with outstanding service, luxurious rooms with deluxe room features and “you ask-you will get” concierge service. Properties have privileged locations or particular history behind it. Gourmet restaurants and spas. For the luxurious traveler.
Expedition.- The least expensive tourist train. Recently renovated cars offer nice seats and good train service.
Vistadome.- A higher category of train service, with panoramic roof windows. It offers a snack and fashion show.
Hiram Bingham.- Luxury train which offers lunch, tea-time and dinner service.
Andean Explorer.- Train service from Cusco to Puno or Puno to Cusco. Departs only on certain days of the week. Depending on the season.
Peruvian Airlines.- Peruvian owned airline. Offer the least expensive prices but has few frequencies. Both Peruvian and Foreigners pay the same.
Star Peru.- Peruvian owned airline. It services many destinations and offers good value prices. Both Peruvian and Foreigners pay the same.
Taca Airlines.- Central American owned airline. Offers great service but few frequencies to Cuzco. Moderately expensive. It offers sale prices for Peruvian Residents ONLY that cannot be purchased by tourists.
Lan Peru.- Chilean owned airline. It offers great service and many frequencies to Cuzco (almost 13 flights per day). Prices are the highest of the market. It offers sale prices for Peruvian Residents ONLY that cannot be purchased by tourists.
Lima/Cusco/Lima: From US $ 350 per person. This is an example price. Prices depend on the airline, date and time of booking.
DOMESTIC TICKETS (PARA LOS TOURS DE GALAPAGOS)
Lima/Cusco/Lima: From US $350 per person. This is an example price. Prices depend on the airline, date and time of booking.
Quito/Galapagos/Quito: From US $421 per person. This is an example price. Prices depend on the airline, date and time of booking.