(Lima, Sacred Valley, Aguas Calientes, Cusco)
Up until now, the word mystical has held little meaning for you. That’s about to change.
Hike the Inca Trail, one of the top 5 treks in the entire world, and immerse yourself in the profound mysteries that are hidden high in the eastern slopes of the Andes. Journey through sublime mountain scenery, lush cloud forests, subtropical jungles and ancient ruins and tunnels as you slowly make your way to Machu Picchu, the “Lost City of the Incas.” In the evenings, rest and relax in well-appointed and comfortable lodgings.
Explore the impressive Inca city of Llactapata enjoying spectacular views of the Vilcanota ridge across the Urubamba River. Pass the Abra Warmihuañusca (Dead Woman´s Pass) where you may glimpse domesticated llamas and alpacas grazing on ichu, one of the few plants that grow at such a high altitude. Descend towards Yanacocha (Black Lagoon) and enter the cloud forest, arriving at Sayacmarca. Climb to the Intipunku, or The Sun Gate along a trail of flat stones on the edges of cliffs in highland jungle. From this vantage point, if you’re one of the lucky ones, you may view the sunrise over the sacred citadel of Machu Picchu and be forever changed.
Enjoy a personalized vacation that best suits your needs, developed by one of our experienced destination experts. Relax during your trip with our 24/7 support and expert local guidance.
Upon arrival you will be met by our local representative who will help you locate your vehicle.
Our local representative will meet you for an airport transfer, with private vehicle and professional driver.
Conveniently located beside the Jorge Chavez Airport, Lima, the Ramada Costa del Sol is a great choice for travelers. The 130 guest rooms include mini bars and climate control. Breakfast offers a lovely range of options, with all the necessities required to start the day off. Try the hotel restaurants which feature items from across the world. Spend time using the sauna and massage services for a relaxing stay.
Fly from Lima to Cusco. Flight duration is approximately 1 hour 15 minutes.
Our local representative will meet you for a transfer, with private vehicle and professional driver to your hotel in the Sacred Valley. Transfer time is approximately 2 hours
Take the rest of the day to acclimatize and enjoy time at leisure surrounded by the natural beauty of the Sacred Valley.
The 87-room Sonesta Posadas del Inca Yucay is located in the heart of the Sacred Valley of the Incas, a one-hour drive from the ancient Inca capital of Cusco and close to Machu Picchu. The Sonesta Yucay Posada is a former 18th century colonial-style monastery and is surrounded by beautiful gardens.
Enjoy a full day excursion to the Pisac ruins located on the top of a hill overlooking the Vilcanota (Urubamba) river, a series of terraces, canals, houses, food storage and temples can be seen in very good shape. The most notable is the “Intihuatana” or solar calendar made out of a big piece of red stone. Continue to visit the Pisac Market where artisans from all over the area congregate to sell their crafts. Buffet lunch in a countryside restaurant and visit to Ollantaytambo, a fortress built during the Inca Empire, excellent sample of military architecture. 8 hours in duration
Includes tourist ticket and entrance fees.
Today is the start of a great journey back in time as you set off on an early morning (04:00-04:30am) transfer by private chauffeured vehicle to the trail head of the Inca trail. Piskacuchu (2700m/8856ft) is a community located on the 82nd kilometer of the Cusco –Machu Picchu railroad, our starting point of the Inca Trail.
The Sacred Valley of the Incas is a valley in the Andes of Peru, close to Cusco. It is fed by rivers which descend through adjoining valleys and gorges, and contains numerous archaeological remains and villages. The valley was appreciated by the Incas due to its special geographical and climatic qualities. It was one of the empire's main points for the extraction of natural wealth, and the best place for maize production in Peru. The Sacred Valley is generally understood to include everything between Písac and Ollantaytambo, parallel to the Urubamba River, or Vilcanota River or Wilcamayu, as this Sacred River is called when passing through the valley.
Tips for Inca Trail hike Hiking pants and T-shirts are recommended during the day, complemented by sweaters, fleeces and waterproof jackets. It is very convenient to have light rain gear available in the daypack (rain poncho or jacket and/or rain pants) as the weather changes easily and rains can suddenly occur. At night, warm clothing is required in the first two campsites, down jackets can be useful, otherwise a fleece and a jacket are sufficient. During the third day (if sunny) and in Machu Picchu, convertible hiking pants are useful, as can be switched into shorts if necessary. Machu Picchu has a warm climate, colling down only in the evening.
Climate Cusco’s climate is divided into two differentiated seasons: the rainy season, from November to April (the heaviest rainfalls occurring usually between January – March); and the dry season, from May to October. The dry season is colder, so temperatures can drop to below 0 degrees at night.Along the Inca Trail, temperatures range from 15-20ºC during the day if it’s sunny, to 05-10ºC during the day if not sunny or 0-05ºC at night in the first 2 campsites. At Wiñaywayna and Machu Picchu, at lower altitude, temperatures are usually warmer though warm clothes are still recommended at night.
This Inca Trail Premium option includes the assistance of local porters who will carry and set up your camp and prepare meals daily. Including porters on your Inca Trail experience provides a great employment opportunity to local people and allows you to give back.
Premium amenities included:- Private transfer from your hotel in Cuzco or the Sacred Valley to the hike start point- Personal Tent (Eureka Timberline 4 Outfitter or similar based on double or single occupancy)- Premium brand Sleeping Bag to -25C/-13F (the North Face or Eureka Timberline 4 Outfitter or similar) and liner- Personal pillow- Luxury thermarest- Personal lamps in tents- Textile bags for carrying snacks- Bio-degradable portable station for toilet facilities- Portable bath station with hot shower + bathing towels- Duffel bag is available for your disposal- Stainless Steel cutlery, plates and glasses/cups- Gourmet meals with limited alcoholic beverages (selection of beverages will be provided during briefing before hike)- Gourmet meals (alcoholic beverages are not included)- One Pisco Sour cocktail and one glass of wine per day per person- English Speaking Guide, Assistant Guide and Coordinator (Day 1,2,3 and 4 of the hike)- Massage Tent- Massage Therapist (1 massage per day after completing the day’s hike as well as assistance during the hike if pain strikes)- Porters to carry personal items (maximum weight of 10kg per person)- Bus ticket between Machu Picchu and Aguas Calientes on day 4 of the hike- Entrance Fee at Machu Picchu on Day 5
Begin today's hike by crossing the bridge over the Urubamba River and walking along its left shore as it flows northwest along the Sacred Valley. Following the trail along a flat terrain, arrive in Miskay (2800m/9184ft), to then ascend and finally see, from the tallest part of an overlook, the impressive Inca city of Llactapata (2650m/8692ft). Continue trekking along the valley created by the Kusichaca River, gradually climbing for about five hours until you reach the community of Wayllabamba (3000m/9840ft), which is the site of tonight's campsite. All along the way, enjoy spectacular views of the Vilcanota ridge on the opposite side of the Urubamba River, where the impressive Veronica peak reigns at 5,832 meters above sea level and a unique diversity of wild flora and fauna which can be found all along the valley.Maximum altitude point:: 3,000 m (9,840 ft)Campsite altitude: 3,000m (9,840ft)
You'll be provided with a premium grade tent (Eureka Timberline 4 Outfitter) for your hiking adventure which will be set up and taken down at each camping spot along the route. A premium brand Sleeping Bag (the North Face or Eureka Timberline 4 Outfitter) as well as sheets for your tent, a pillow, and a standard thermarest will be provided for maximum comfort. Textile bags for carrying snacks, a bio-degradable portable bath station and a duffel bag will also be available for your personal use.
Wake up at around 6:00 am and after breakfast begin the most difficult part of the trek, which consists of an abrupt and steep ascent that stretches for 9 km. Along this climb, the landscape changes from sierra to puna (a dry and high area with little vegetation). On the way to the first mountain pass, the Abra Warmihuañusca (Dead Woman´s Pass – 4200m/13776ft), you may see domesticated llamas and alpacas grazing on ichu, one of the few plants that grow at high altitude. Cross an area of the so called cloud forest, which is the habitat for many different kinds of birds like hummingbirds and sparrows, and the Andean bear, which is also called the Spectacled Bear (Tremarctus Ornatus). On this day in particular, it is advised to stock up your day pack with candies, chocolates and coca leaves that will keep your sugar level high, and help with altitude sickness. Immediately after the pass, descend into the Pacaymayo valley (3600m/11808ft), where we camp after approximately 7h of hiking.
Maximum altitude point:: 4,200 m (13,776 ft)Campsite altitude: 3,500 m (11,480 ft)
When in Rome... enjoy a pisco sour on one of your evenings on the trail - the national drink of choice!
This day is the longest but also the most impressive and the most interesting, due the number of archaeological sites and the lush cloud forest area rich in Andean flora and fauna. From Pacaymay, climb to the second pass, the Abra Runkurakay (3970m/13022ft). Halfway up, stop to visit the archaeological complex of the same name. This site, located at 3800m/12464ft, consists of a small oval structure that is believed to have served the purpose of a watchtower.
After going over the pass, descend towards Yanacocha (Black Lagoon) and enter the cloud forest to finally arrive at Sayacmarca (3624m/11887ft). This is a beautiful complex made up of a semicircular construction, enclosures at different levels, narrow streets, liturgical fountains, patios and irrigation canals.
Continuing up an easy climb, arrive at the third pass, the Abra Phuyupatamarca (3700m/12136ft). Along this climb you'll surely appreciate the magnitude of the Incas´ ancient craft, by walking along paths semi-detached from the mountain, and seeing rocks that fill up ravines in perfect order, saving the trail from the multileveled Andean geography. This is one of the most complete and best-preserved archaeological complexes along the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, and is located on the highest point of a mountain.
Continue the trek down the long descending stone steps that lead us to Wiñaywayna (2650m/8692ft), an impressive Inca complex made up of an agricultural center with numerous terraces, a religious sector and an urban sector, close to which our camp is located. This campsite hosts a trekker lodge, a bar and bathrooms with hot shower facilities. After visiting the impressive archaeological site, enjoy a farewell dinner at camp.Maximum altitude point: 3,900 m (12,792 ft)Campsite altitude: 2,650 m (8,692 ft)
On this fourth and last day, arise at 4.00 am to leave Wiñaywayna an hour later and climb to the Intipunku, or The Sun Gate. This will take an hour of hiking along a trail of flat stones on the edges of cliffs in highland jungle. From this fabulous spot, you may see the sunrise over the sacred citadel of Machu Picchu. From Intipunku, descend into Machu Picchu, and 40 minutes later you'll enter the citadel from the highest point through the ¨House of the Guardians¨.
Descend to the control point where your guide will register you before you'll be privy to a complete privately guided tour of the Inca citadel that will take approximately two hours. Bid farewell to your guide and porters and enjoy some free time to walk around, or climb the Huayna Picchu Mountain, where one can experience spectacular views of all of Machu Picchu, the valleys and mountains that surround it. Alternatively, you may like to consider visiting the Temple of the Moon or the impressive Inca Bridge.Maximum altitude point: 2,700 m (8,829 ft)Machu Picchu altitude: 2,400 m (7,872 ft)
For your convenience the bus ticket between Machu Picchu and Aguas Calientes is provided. Buses depart about every 30 minutes, once the bus is full.
Inkaterra Machu Picchu enjoys the privacy of 12 acres of lush vegetation and land in Aguas Calientes. The 85 rooms are well-appointed, with local decorative effects accented by contemporary fabrics. Traditional Andean alpaca blankets and terra cotta tile mark the appearance of this Peruvian retreat. A talented kitchen staff and chef are responsible for scrumptious, fusion-style Andean cuisine. Delve into this region by taking hikes, walks, and bird watching. Otherwise, spend some time at the spa and pamper yourself with relaxing treatments and aromas.
Participate in some of the optional excursions available at the Inkaterra Machu Picchu Pueblo hotel. Experience contemplative walks to sacred sites, or attempt a challenging Andean ascent. On the hotel grounds, nature trails wind past waterfalls and gardens; trained guides explain the fascinating cloud forest ecosystem. Discover a working tea plantation, and the world’s largest private collection of indigenous orchids, open to the public. What could be more enchanting than the vibrant Waqnaki and the legend of a lovesick Inca princess whose sadness was transformed into colorful teardrop petals?
NATURE WALK Walk along the hotel's trails, and discover the fascinating yet fragile ecosystem of the Machu Picchu cloud forest, and learn about its many indigenous plants and animals.The Nature Walk offers guests a glimpse of cloud forest flora: ferns, bromeliads and orchids and fauna -an interesting variety of birds; as well as an introduction to the Vilcanota river system, the Observatory, the tea garden and house.Duration: ¼ day.Difficulty level: I.Attractions: Tea / Birds / Medicinal plants / Butterflies / Insects / Photos
BIRDS OF MACHU PICCHU Walk early in the morning to take advantage of the optimum time for cloud-forest bird watching. Begin at a river observatory, with the possibility of sighting the sought-after torrent duck and the white-capped dipper. Then proceed to a productive tanager feeding area, where silver-beaked, blue-necked, fawn-breasted and saffron-crowned tanagers can be found.Along the hotel's pathways, be on the lookout for the cock-of-the-rock, the golden-headed quetzal and many of the 18 different hummingbirds identified on the grounds, including the booted racket-tail and the green-and-white hummingbirds, which are native to the area.Duration: ¼ day.Difficulty level: I.Attractions: Birds / Photos.
TWILIGHT WALK This early evening walk is designed to connect on a spiritual level with the environment and the historical energy of the Machu Picchu area.With special attention placed on nature's core elements, the walk pauses at the Rocotal Observatory to appreciate an enchanting waterfall and sacred pre-Inca pictographs.Duration: ¼ day.Difficulty level: II.Attractions: Insects / Photos / Waterfall / pre-Inca Pictographs.
The entrance ticket to Machu Picchu is provided for your convenience.
Return to Cusco on the Vistadome train. Departs from Aguas Calientes at 3:25pm* and takes 4 hours to return to Cusco. Snacks are served on board.*Note train times and schedules may vary based on availability
Our local representative will meet you with a private vehicle and professional driver for a train station transfer.
Situated in the historic area of Cusco, the Libertador Palacio del Inka is highly commended by past guests for its services and facilities. The 240 rooms and 14 suites are well-appointed, with comfortable beds and stimulating views. The breakfast buffet is delicious, with a good spread of options that will satisfy everybody. The hotel has a grand, ancient atmosphere, and is simply impeccable when it comes to staff and an amiable atmosphere. There is plenty of lounging space for those who want to interact with other guests or friends. The Libertador is conveniently situated, within easy walking distance to key points in the city for shopping and sightseeing.
Direct flight from Cusco to Lima. The flight duration is approximately 1 hour and 25 minutes.Please note: Flights' rates and availability are subject to change until booking.
Explore Lima on a sightseeing tour of Colonial and Modern Lima with a private guide and driver. Visit the Government Palace, City Hall, Cathedral at the Plaza Mayor (closed on Sundays), along with the 17th century San Francisco Convent. Take a short tour of the modern districts of San Isidro and Miraflores for a magnificent view of the Pacific Ocean.
Enjoy dinner at the restaurant "Huaca Pucllana"
In the Fifth century, the Lima valley inhabitants started the construction of the Huaca Pucllana. Two important reasons inspired the group of sacred priests, who were the governing rulers at that time. The first reason was their need to express their religious authority. The second reason was directly linked with the control of the hydrological resources stemmed from the water canal system, on the left bank of the Rimac river. Therefore, Pucllana was an important ceremonial and administrative location. Its magnificence was reflected by the configuration of a monumental architecture. It was built with small adobe bricks wrought on a continuous base of blocks and remodeled during the three centuries of the Huaca existence. Currently the Pucllana Archeological Zone spreads over 15 hectares. Today, fifteen centuries after those men gave life to Pucllana, Huaca Pucllana Restaurant, offers you a sample of the best Peruvian and International cuisine. Welcome to La Huaca Pucllana!
Please note obtaining a visa is your responsibility. These requirements change often and therefore it is best that you check with the Embassy of Peru for the most up to date visa information.
HEALTHHealth insurance is required. Medical facilities are poor quality and not widespread. We recommend that you see a health-care provider who specializes in Travel Medicine. The doctor or health-care provider will determine what vaccinations and medication you will need, depending on factors such as your health and immunization history, areas of the country you will be visiting, and planned activities. For more information on travel requirements, visit the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/travel/destinations/peru.aspx COUNTRY INFOCapital: Lima. Government: Republic. Gained independence from Spain in 1824, having declared it in 1821. Language: Spanish and Quechua are the official languages. English is spoken in major tourist areas. Religion: 81% Roman Catholic, 2.1% other denominations, 16.3% unspecified or none. Time: GMT - 5. Electricity: 220 volts AC, 60Hz. (110 volts AC is available in most 4- and 5-star hotels.) Telephone: Country code +51. Mobile Telephone: Roaming agreements exist with some international mobile phone companies. Mobile phones can be rented in Lima and the main cities. Coverage is sporadic. Internet: Public Internet booths and Internet cafes are widely available in cities and most towns.
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