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Trip Facts

  • Timing: 7 Days / 6 nights
  • Activities: Trekking and explore the XV century Inca settlement of Machu Picchu
  • Departure Dates: Any day with 2 people
  • Best Season: From March to November
  • Altitudes: Min. 2,400m at Machu Picchu. Max. 4,200m in the highest pass named “dead woman” Pass.
  • Transportation: Bus, Train and trekking.
  • Accommodation: Camping tents and hotel in the city of Cusco
  • Difficulty: moderate
  • Restricted Permits: Yes

Important Info

Imperial Inca Trail Machu Picchu

Imperial Inca Trail Machu Picchu

On your request we can try to get others around you (add other people to your groups) BUT we do Not guarantee this will happen as spaces get Sold Out rapidly and unpredictably.

Is this trip for me?

If you wish to hike the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, but also experience the cultural and natural highlights of the fascinating Machu Picchu national park in Peru, this is the tour for you. This trip is ideal if you are happy to stay in simple yet comfortable tents but prefer to be away from the busy campsites. Trek with a small group of up to 12 people— in the company of an expert guide. Two acclimatization days allow you to further explore Inca ruins, landscapes and villages of the Andes.

Imperial Inca Trail Trek to Machu Picchu 7 Days

  • Short Inca Trail Trek
  • Machu Picchu Short Inca Trail

Overview

IMPERIAL INCA TRAIL OVERVIEW

Imperial Inca Trail is one of the most adventurous treks in the region Cusco; organized by “Sunrise Peru Trek”. This trek is the culmination of trekking adventures as it combines the city of cusco, the national park of Machu Picchu  and the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Challenging trek is continuously rewarded with dramatic Vilcabamba mountain range sceneries; including two of the Peru’s highest peaks: Salkantay and La veronica.

The Imperial Inca Trail amazing adventure caters spectacular views of the Peruvian Andes and authentic culture of Incas; who migrated to the Cusco region from Altiplano region in the XI-century. The trekking trail; which goes up and down frequently on the rolling forested hills also manifests floral and faunal diversity of Machu Picchu National Park. This moderate Imperial Inca Trail that best suits to trekkers; who have plans of spending one week in Peru. Relatively an easy walks that goes as high as 4,200m; the Imperial Inca Trail can be enjoyed by experienced as well as novice trekkers.  Our Imperial Inca Trail  additionally allows you to discover the magnificent Inca culture, life style, customs and traditions of the Peruvians.

This Imperial Inca Trail runs through the national park of Machu Picchu in the southeast of Peru and is home of Inca culture. Those who visit this region are rewarded by the opportunity to witness and learn about traditional customs, a unique lifestyle and breathtaking views of Salkantay Mountain and canyon-like valleys.

Highlights of Imperial Inca Trail

  • Sightseeing tour to various historical/natural/cultural world heritage sites in the ragion of Cusco and Machu Picchu
  • Magnificent bus drive through the sacred valley of the Incas (Enjoy the view of Pisaq and Ollantaytambo)
  • Step inside and experience the lifestyle and traditions of people living in the Peruvian Andes
  • Trekking in Machu Picchu National Park (Listed in UNESCO world heritage natural and Cultural site)
  • Discover numerous XV century Inca settlements and other cultural monuments.
  • Variety of floras and faunas to witness
  • Explore the Iconic Machu Picchu situated at the altitude of 2,400m

OUTLINE ITINERARY

1st Day: Cusco

Arrival to Cusco and explore the Inca and colonial architecture in the city

2th Day: Acclimatization day

Drive a private bus through the sacred valley of the Incas and visit the Inca settlements of Pisaq and Ollantaytambo

3th Day: Yuncachimpa

One hours bus drive and trek for 6 -7 hours from Pisqhakuchu (2,750m) to Yuncachimpa camp at 3,300m.

4th Day: Dead Woman pass

walk over the highest point, the “Dead woman pass” at 4,200m; today is the hardest walking day.

5th Day: Beautiful day

explore various Inca settlements along the trail and experience the beautiful forest with plenty of wildlife.

6th Day: Machu Picchu

Explore Machu Picchu in the morning, enjoy a free time for further exploration and in the afternoon we’ll return to Cusco by train.

7th Day: Transfer out

After breakfast in the hotel we’ll transfer you to the airport of Cusco.

Itinerary

DAY TO DAY

1st Day: Arrival to Cusco

Imperial Inca Trail Machu Picchu

Imperial Inca Trail Machu Picchu

Arrive to Cusco city at any time. Today there are no planned activities. Our staff will be waiting for you in the Airport of Cusco and transfer you to the designated hotel; check into the hotel and enjoy the city. There is a welcome meeting in the evening where our guide will review the details of your tour. Optionally you can do the city tour; in this tour you’ll visits the cathedral, the koricancha, Sacsayhuaman, Quenqo, Tambomachay and Pucapucara; the tour last for 4:30 hours.

  • Accommodation: Prisma Hotel (or similar)
  • Meals included: Breakfast

2th Day: Acclimatization day

Enjoy breakfast in the hotel. At 8:00am we leave the hotel in our private car toward the Sacred Valley of the Incas. We’ll stop in the viewing points of the valley before exploring the Pisac Inca ruins. We also will visit the local market in the town of Pisaq where you can purchase some items like handicrafts directly from the manufacturers. We then drive through the sacred valley until the town of Urubamba where we stop and enjoy a local cuisine for lunch.

Imperial Inca Trail Machu Picchu

From Urubamba a further 30 minute drive takes us to Ollantaytambo village which is surrounded by the sacred mountains, where we will again discover the magnificence of the Incan constructions, the amazing temple of the Sun, enormous blocks of rock perfectly carved and polished, stone water fountains, stairs, terraces and the beauty of the local people in their traditional dress, all surrounded by the sacred mountains and Valley of Patacancha and Willoq. Finish the day exploring the Ollantaytambo Inca ruins.

The Sacred Valley of the Incas

is a tale of mighty glacial rivers carving through solid earth to shape one of the most environmentally diverse basins in the Peruvian highlands. From the flat floor of the fertile valley, hills and mountains climb higher and higher to elevations where snow accumulates year round.

Above the ice-capped peaks (the apus, or divine spirits, of Inca mythology), there is only the boundless Andean sky. The Urubamba/Vilcanota River runs through the valley, and in Inca times, its flow was thought to mimic the shape of the Milky Way. The Sacred Valley of the Incas is a stretch of virtually untouched villages and ancient ruins ranging across broad fields and mountain slopes, it drips with Andean history, culture, and beauty.

  • Private Vehicle: Cusco – Pisaq – Urubamba – Ollantaytambo
  • Pisac Ruins Guided Tour / 45m-1h
  • Ollantaytambo Ruins Guided Tour /1h

Days 3, 4, 5 & 6: Trek the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu

Imperial Inca Trail Machu Picchu

Imperial Inca Trail Machu Picchu

After breakfast in the Hotel at 7:00am depart Ollantaytambo by van to km 82 where the hike begins. Once we arrive there with your passport in your hand we pass the control point, then we trek through beautiful scenery, with a variety of flora that changes with the seasons.A crew of local porters, cooks, and guides will take care of all the details for the duration of the hike. Porters carry the majority of the gear so you’ll only need to carry a small daypack with water, rain gear, snacks, a camera, etc.

The Imperial Inca Trail starts in the village of Pisqhakuchu or the km 82, of the Cuzco – Machu Picchu railway and takes four days of strenuous walking. The trail includes an impressive variety of altitudes, climates and ecosystems that range from the high Andean plain to the cloud forest. Travelers will cross two high altitude passes (the highest being Warmiwañuska at 4,200 m.a.s.l.) to culminate the hike with a magical entrance to Machu Picchu through the Inti Punko or Gateway of the Sun.

Trek Description

To begin the the Trek; we’ll cross the Kusichaca bridge, (an important Inca bridge which using Inca techniques, has been built with steel cables which allow visitors to cross the Urubamba River). Then you head over to the left bank through a cactus grove and start the day calmly. After 2 hours trek we will come across the archaeological complexes of Q’ente, Pulpituyoc, Kusichaca and Patallaca. From this last spot, follow the trail along the left side of the Kusichaca Valley/River in the area with the same name where you will not only see the bridge but also you will find tombs, aqueducts, terraces, Roads and a deep canyon. The trail continues until the small peasant village of Wayllabamba (3,000masl) here we’ll set up our first camp.

From Huayllabamba we’ll start very early hiking the most difficult part of the Imperial Inca Trail as we have to climb up to 4,200 meters, crossing the Warmiwañusqa pass, the first and the highest. If you suffer from “soroche” (altitude sickness) it is best not to stop and descend quickly to the valley of the Pakaymayu River, where we’ll setup our second campsite at an altitude of 3,600masl.

On the third trekking day

Our third trekking day is the longest but very beautiful and interesting. We will be able to visit impressive archaeological complexes such as Runkuraqay, Sayacmarka, Cochamarka, Phuyipatamarka, intipata and wiñayhuayna. From Pacaymayu the trail climbs up toward the second pass, at 3,950masl. From where we’ll descend to Yanacocha (the black lagoon) and later we’ll trek through the cloud forest until Wiñay Wayna wher we’ll setup our thrith campsite at 2,600masl.

On the fourth trekking day we’ll start at 4:00am to arrive to Machu Picchu at 7:00am and take the pictures with the first light of the day. Then we’ll have a guided tour within Machu Picchu; you can leave your equipment at the control gate; after the tour you’ll have time to walk around Machu Picchu until mid-after-noon. After all we’ll take the bus to the town of Aguas Calientes where we’ll enjoy our lunch and in the afternoon we’ll take the train to return to Ollantaytambo train station from where we’ll take a car to Cusco.

Meals included: Breakfast | Lunch | Dinner

Trekking distances:

  1st walking Day.- Pishqkuchu (km 82) – Wayllabamba: 11 km 6 -7 hours
  2th walking Day.- Waylabamba –  Pacaymayu : 11 km 8 – 9 hours
   3th walking Day.- Pacaymayu – Wiñay Wayna: 18 km 7 – 8 hours
  4th walking Day.- Wiñay Wayna –  Machu Picchu 5 km 2 hours

7th Day: farewell

We’ll be at your hotel at least two hours before your flight leaves to drive you to the airport where you should check your plane ticket and pay the airport tax.

END OF THE SERVICES

Inclusions

The Price Includes

 ALL FIXED TRANSPORTATION:

  • Transfer in/out airport/hotel/airport
  • Private bus for the Sacred Valley tour, the same bus will transfer you from Ollantaytambo to Km 82 starting point of the Inca Trail
  • Bus down from Machu Picchu to Aguas Calientes
  • Tourist train Expeditions class from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo
  • Transfer to Cusco hotel.

ENTRANCE FEES:

  • For the Sacred Valley tour
  • Inca Trail Permits & Entrance fees
  • Machu Picchu Permits & Entrance fees

MEALS:

  • All breakfasts in the hotels
  • Delicious meals on the Inca trail prepared by professional chefs
  • Food includes pancakes, omelets, soups, fresh fruit, avocado, pasta, chicken, fish, meat, rice, all rich in carbohydrates and suitable for trekking, also hot drinks including coca leaf tea which is excellent for the altitude, teatime everyday (tea, coffee, biscuits, popcorn),
  • The price Includes 3 breakfasts- 3 lunches- 3 dinners- 3 afternoon tees
  • We offer a vegetarian option upon request
  • We provide available boiled water each morning for your water bottles.

GUIDE:

  • Licensed bilingual tour guide (2 guides over 8 people),

GENERAL PORTERS:

  • For the camping equipment
  • For the food
  • Kitchen gears.

EXTRA PORTER:

  • To carry your personal items (6kls)
  • We provide duffel bags.

CAMPING EQUIPMENT:

  • We provide brand new 4 season four people capacity tents for two people.
  • Therm-a-rest
  • Dinning room tent
  • Kitchen tent
  • Toilet tent, seats and tables
  • Tent for the guides and porters
  • Kitchen gear
  • Backpacks, warm clothes and life insurance for the porters.

ACCOMMODATIONS:

  • Hotel based on double occupancy
  • 2 nights in Cusco ***Hotel/ Prisma Hotel… See the web
  • 1 night in Ollantaytambo ***Hotel / Hotel Pakarictampu … See the web
  • 3 nights in camping tents
  • If you would like a single room there is an additional cost of US$30.00 per night,

OTHER ITEMS:

  • Local guide for permanent assistance
  • First aid kit
  • Oxygen bottle

NOT INCLUDE

  • MEALS: Lunch and dinner on day 1, 2 and 6; You must consider a budget from US$15 to US$25 for each meal. We will assist you at this issues.
  • Sleeping Bag: Can be rented in our office for US $20 for the entire trek.
  • Tips for the staff and Airport taxes.

Accommodation

Accommodations

For Imperial Inca Trail; is included 3 nights accommodation in 3* hotels in Cusco and Ollantaytambo. We carefully select small friendly hotels that offer great value, food and welcomes. The accommodation we normally use is detailed in the itinerary.

For 3 nights on trek you will stay at quiet campsites in good quality two-man tents—usual information is as follows:
Eureka! Tent Fits 3 Persons max. (Used for 2 persons), floor dimensions: 2.20m x 1.90m, weight: 6.5kg, aluminum poles, 2 doors.

The campsites have a separate dining tent, and bathroom tent. There are no showers on campsite but you will be given water to wash with in the morning.

Single Rooms and Solo Walkers

A supplement is payable for single occupancy—please note that we do not place strangers together in a tent, so if you are a solo traveller or travelling in a group with uneven numbers, then a single occupancy supplement will apply.

Meals

For Classic Inca Trail; meals are included only during the trek: 3 breakfasts, 3 Lunches, 3 Dinners, 3 tea-times. Is included also all Breakfasts in the Hotels.

A typical trekking day may look something like this:

  • 06:00 Wake-up cup of tea
  • 07:00 Breakfast of yoghurt, granola, “Chuta” bread, sliced cheese, tea/coffee Mid-morning: Snack of fruit (banana, apple), chocolate, munay nuts
  • 13:00 Lunch of asparagus soup, grilled chicken & mashed potato
  • Late afternoon tea: cake, popcorn, tea/coffee
  • 19:00 Dinner of corn soup, beef stew & quinoa, vanilla pudding
Accommodations
Hotel Visit the website

Hotel Prisma – Cusco

A small hotel located in the historic center of Cusco.

 

 
Hotel Visit the website

Hotel Pakaritampu – Ollantaytambo

The has 20 comfortable en rooms, all with views, cable TV, telephone, and hairdryer. It is also possible to take advantage of the laundry

 

 
Tented Camp

Tented Camp – Inca Trail

The campsites have a separate dining tent, and bathroom tent. There are no showers on campsite but you will be given water to wash with in the morning.

FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

How far in advance do I need to reserve the Imperial Inca Trail?

We recommended you to reserve as far in advance as possible. The government has strictly limited the number of people allowed on the Inca Trail (permits are issued to about 200 trekkers per day plus 300 porters). We therefore recommend that you try to make your Imperial Inca Trail reservation as far in advance as possible as soon as you know the dates of your international flights (check that your passport isn’t about to expire).

What about payment, do you need a deposit?

After we have confirmed your trek booking you will need to pay a trek deposit of US$250. The deposit can be paid by PayPal (preferred method as it is quick), or by bank transfer. The remaining trek balance needs to be paid in our office in Cusco at least 2 days prior to the trek departure date, before 7.30pm. Payment is to be made in cash US dollars (preferred) or local currency. When we confirm your trek booking we will send you more details about how to pay the trek deposit.

Please note.- that the trek deposit is non-refundable & non-transferable. The deposit is used to purchase your trek permit and reserve space within the group. After purchasing the permit (or submitting your details to the government) we cannot change the date of trek departure or change the name or passport number on the trek permit.

Is the trek difficult, do I need to be fit?

The Imperial Inca Trail includes the 45km (27 mile) hike through mountainous regions; trekking for 6 -8 hours at high altitude and over rough terrain. The maximum altitude reached on the trek is 4,200m above sea level. On the second day of the trek we ascend 1200m. Make no mistake, the Inca Trail is a fairly difficult trek and you should be well prepared and healthy prior to starting it. You should be fit and take regular exercise. Try walking 15km in a day or go to the gym in the months leading up to the trek. See Trek preparations.

Can I have vegetarian meals, vegan, and special meals?

We offer standard meals as well as a vegetarian meal option. Just let us know if you want vegetarian meals when you book your trek.
Vegetarian meals have no red meat, chicken or fish. We will assume that eggs and dairy are OK. We don’t cater specifically for vegans as it can get too complicated for our cooks (remember they are cooking in a tent). Most of our main meals in the evening are served as a buffet service so you can always leave what you don’t like; If there is a particular food that you don’t like (i.e. tomatoes, onions, mushrooms etc.)

What do I need to bring on the Imperial IncaTrail?

Backpack, sleeping bag, double-thickness foam mattress (we will provide you with this but you have to carry it, it weighs approx. 1kg), rain jacket, strong suitable footwear, one complete change of clothing, sweater, jacket (something warm), water bottle (metal or nalgene type) and sterilizing tablets (Micropur are recommended and can be bought in local pharmacies in Cusco), flashlight and batteries, broad-brim or peaked cap, sunblock, insect repellent, toiletries and toilet paper, selection of small snacks, chocolate, dried fruit, biscuits etc, camera and spare batteries (nowhere to charge your camera during the trek).

For your own personal hygiene we also recommend that you bring a small bottle of antiseptic/anti-bacterial hand gel to clean your hands each time after using the camp toilets and before eating any snacks / meals. You also have to bring your original passport with you on the trek, with the same passport number you originally made your reservation with; otherwise you will be unable to go on the trek. Photocopies are no longer acceptable.
All of them will loaded by our porter in duffle bags that we provide; you’ll walk caring a small backpack with elemental thing for the day like: water, insect repellent, sunblock, snacks, raingear and one jacket

Location

Imperial Inca Trail Location

Map

Imperial Inca Trail Machu Picchu 7 Days

Imperial Inca Trail Machu Picchu

Imperial Inca Trail Machu Picchu map

The Inca Trail Map

ADVISOR LINKS

  Inca Trail

  Inca Trail Trekking Region and Routes

  Altitude Sickness and Acclimatization

  Inca Trail Treks – Costs and Tour Operators

  Packing Lists for Inca Trail Treks

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