The appeal of the CLASSIC INCA TRAIL TO MACHU PICCHU is the stunning combination of Inca ruins, magnificent mountains, exotic vegetation and extraordinary ecological variety. The trail goes through the National Park and the Sun Gate from where you will have an unforgettable view of the citadel, ending at the magnificent wonder of the world: Machu picchu
Have a look at the Inca Trail Availability in 2016
You will be picked up at 4.30am from your hotel, and travel by bus to the beginnning of our trail Piskacucho- kilometer 82. At 6.30 til 7am you can buy your breakfast in Ollantaytambo and load up on energy.
Upon our arrival at 8.30am to kilometer 82, you’ll get some time to organize, take restroom break, apply sunscreen, and insect repellent etc. At our first trail control point, you will need your entrance tickets, passports and student cards.
As we get moving, we will cross the Vilcanota River (2720m/8923ft) and turn right onto the trail. The first day is a good warmup session for the days ahead. The Incan flat terrain offers: views of the historical Incan Fortress (‘Huillca Raccay’), the vast and incredible Incan site of Llactapata inticing your lust for adventure (officially called ‘Patallacta’), the Urubamba mountain range that creates the diversity between the jungle, the Andes and the beautiful snow-capped peak of ‘W’akay Willca’ (5860m/19225ft) with her arms rising towards the infinite sky in vastness known as Veronica.
In 1.5 hours we reach our campsite Ayapata in the temperate green valley and small village of Wayllabamba (3000m/9842ft). Temperatures vary through the night around 5ºC .
With an early wake up and breakfast at 5-5.30am, we start a steep ascent along the heavily trodden historic path, reaching the highest pass, Abra de Warrmihuañusca or ‘Dead Woman’s Pass’ (4200m/13779ft). Today you will high five those around you with a real sense of achievement as we reach the top! Up at the pass, there we will be hummingbirds and many other species of birdlife. Plenty of time will be taken to appreciate the incredible variety of native plants, ´Polylepis´ or Q’ueuña trees which grow in astonishing cloud forest locations at 3650m/11972ft! After a well deserved rest, feeling rejuvenated we descend to Pacaymayu (3550m/11646ft) for lunch.
After lunch, begins a steep two hour climb and arrival time to Camp Runkuraqay pass around 5pm, (almost 4000 meters) with cooler night temperatures of around 4ºC.
This is the most impressive day! With wake up at 6am for breakfast, we start the day with a gentle climb to explore the archaeological site of ‘Phuyupatamarca’ (meaning ‘Town in the Clouds’), the third highest point on the trail (3,680mt/12073 feet). Catch your breath as your eyes fixate on the mountains and canyons, groomed in the pure brillance of the suns reflections.
The mind boggles in the wonder of ancient humanity and the secrets kept in these lands walking toward the third pass to visit The Incan site of ‘Phuyupatamarca’ and then climbing 3000 worn steps towards the impressive agricultural Incan site of ‘Intipata’ and our third campsite Wiñay Wayna (2680m/8792ft). Only 5 hours of walking today, arriving at camp by lunchtime! Temps around 12º C through the night.
A short distance from campsite is the Incan site of the same name ‘Wiñay Wayna’ (‘Forever Young’). Don’t miss visiting the most impressive site on the trail.
Note: On this day all our groups visit one of the most impressive Inca Cites of the Inca Trail called Wiñawayna!!
At around 4:00am you get up, have breakfast, and get going on the Inca trail to get to Machu Picchu. This is the last part of the journey, arriving by 6:00AM at the Inti Punku or The Sun Gate. Instantly, out of the blue, every part of Machu Picchu is in front of your eyes, manifesting its immense beauty – an incredible sight for all to see. The sight is beyond belief! Imagining after just finishing the Inca Trail, the journey of those Incas and what they must have experienced during their taxing expedition to this expansive temple.
At this point we move downhill towards Machu Picchu (2400m/7872 ft), after a period of 40 minutes we enter the citadel from the top point through the “House of the Guardians”. We then proceed to the control point where we register and leave our belongings. Your guide will expertly direct you throughout the astounding ruins and its main streets. You can then wander around the town squares as well as climb the intricately carved stairways made of stone. Machu Picchu is considered as the world’s spiritual centers by esoteric wisdom. Once the guided tour is over, you will have some free time to explore the site on your own, to relax, or to meditate.
You will also have time to indulge in a few of the following activities on your own (not included in the price)
Back to Cusco: You will descend to Aguas Calientes by bus (included), have leisurely lunch (not included), and later on board the train by 4:22pm for the return trip to Cusco, stopping at the Ollantaytambo Station and then meeting your private van for your drive back to your hotel in Cusco.
*** Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountains hike depend on availability, please let us know if you want to add one of these extra hikes at the time of your booking.
*** We only take SAM Travel Peru clients in our vans / cars – We do not use public transport.
PERSONAL HELP PORTER INCLUDED:
The prices INCLUDES the combined Inca Trail trek permit and Machu Picchu entrance fee of 296 Peruvian Soles (S/.251 + S/.45 sales tax) which is about US90, bus from Machu Picchu to Aguas Calientes (US$12), return on tourist train from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo Expedition Service 84 (US$80), Bus from Ollantaytambo to Cusco (US$15) and all local sales taxes (18%).
SAM Travel Peru does not have hidden charges in the trek prices
“Any day that is best for you as long as we have a minimum of 2 trekkers”
If there are at least 4 people in your group, you will automatically get either: $30 per person group discount or a free Sacred Valley tour (Must do in Cusco). This discount or free tour is valid for the following adventure trips: Classic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, Salkantay trek, Choquekirao to Machu Picchu trek, Lares trek etc.
Please note that this discount does not apply to private treks or any other trek not mentioned here.
“Please read carefully the following informations; it will help you clarify all your queries and questions about our services and the treks to Machu Picchu”
WELCOME TO CUSCO: You will be met on arrival at Cuzco airport, please ensure that you advise your full flight arrival details at least 14 days prior to trip start. Look out for our representative holding an orange board with your name at the arrival terminal.
The rest of the day is at your leisure until 6pm, when your SAM Travel Peru representative will meet you at the lobby of the hotel, who will give you all the information about your trek or tour.
DEPARTURE: Any day that is best for you as long as we have a minimum of 2 trekkers
GROUP SIZE: Small Groups from 2 – 8 people (could be 2, 4, 5 …), a small group will make your experience different with a personalized attention from the whole team, where you can also enjoy the route according to its rate hike.
NOTE: Big group can be organized by request.
TRAIN SCHEDULES: At the end of the Trek or Tour we will take the 2:55pm or 6:35pm train leaving Aguas Calientes. It takes 2 hours till Ollantaytambo and then we will transfer you back to Cusco and your hotel. Train tickets depends on availability.
HOTEL: For treks that include accommodation at Aguas Calientes, we stay at “Hostal Machu Picchu or El Presidente Hotel” which is a very nice place to rest after several days of walking! In comparison to other companies, we will not be staying in basic shared rooms or sharing showers. Our hotels depend on availability.
However, if you would like to have a better accommodation just let us know the accommodation of your preference and we will let you know how much the extra fee will be.
HUAYNAPICCHU MOUNTAIN: Please, if you are thinking of climbing Huayna Picchu mountain you must book this at the same time as your trek or tour to Machu Picchu. Only 400 people can hike Huayna Picchu per day. You will climb it on your own after the tour in Machu Picchu around 10 .00 am. The price is $25 per person.
Note: For the Inca Trail trek hikers, the Huayna Picchu mountain entrance tickets cost US$67 per person and it has to be booked in advance.
HORSES, COOK & ASSISTANT COOK: On this trek we provide horses and mules to carry the food, the camping equipment and your belongings up to 7 kilos.
NOTE: We included an emergency horse for the group, which can be ridden if you’re feeling exhausted or are ill (only for alternative treks)
OUR GUIDES: They each speak English fluently and of course all of them speak Spanish and Quechua (the Inca Language). They are all able to communicate with natives from around the area and of course they will have lots of history to share with you.
MEALS: The food provided by the porters and cook is nothing short of amazing. Trekkers can expect a breakfast of omelettes or pancakes, a ‘takeaway’ snack pack of fruit or chocolate to eat mid morning, a two course lunch of soup and meat with pasta or rice, afternoon tea on arrival at camp with biscuits and popcorn and a three course dinner. Breakfast and dinner is accompanied by hot drinks (tea, coffee, chocolate) and lunch usually by cordial (other drinks e.g. soft drinks or beer are at your own expense and can be pricey on the trail). All food is prepared, served and cleared away by the cook and porters and the quality of the meals is quite something when you consider that all the ingredients and basic cooking equipment has been carried in. Trekkers will certainly not go hungry and special dietary requirements can be catered for if specified in advance. You will be able to buy bottled water on day 1 and 2 of the trek at various points along the way, after this you will refill your empty bottles from boiled water provided by the porters. Boiled water will be provided during the trek when it is possible to make camp.
OUR EQUIPMENT: We provide 4 man tents for only 2 people and INFLATABLE MATTRESS for everyone. Our dining equipment includes a spacious dining tent, tables and chairs, plates and utensils.
Please note that if you are over 1.95 meters / 6´4″ tall then you won´t be able to rent a sleeping bag in Cusco. In this case it is recommended to bring your own.
CULTURE SHOCK RATING: The comforts of home are more of a rarity. English isn’t common and the food will be quite different to home. It’s important to observe some of the local customs to not cause offence. Many of the locals’ standards of living may be confronting.
SPENDING MONEY: Every traveller is different and therefore spending money requirements will vary. Some travellers may drink more than others while other travellers like to purchase more souvenirs than most. Please consider your own spending habits when it comes to allowing for drinks, shopping, participating in optional activities, and tipping. Please also remember the following specific recommendations when planning your trip.
TIPPING: If you’re happy with the services provided a tip – though not compulsory – is appropriate. While it may not be customary to you, it’s of great significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels, inspires excellent service, and is an entrenched feature of the tourism industry across many ISAM Travel Peru destinations.
Of course you are free to tip more or less as you see fit, depending on your perception of service quality and the length of your trip. Remember, a tip is not compulsory and should only be given when you receive excellent service.
WEATHER: The wet season in this region is from December to March when heavy rains can cause disruptions to ground transport. SAM Travel Peru will monitor any situations that arise, and may need to change itineraries or activities in response to natural weather occurrences.
TRANSPORT: Train, Minibus
Telephone: (+51) (84) 630690, Telefax: (+51) (84) 630690 Cell Phone:(+51) (84)992 126 224 (spanish and english)
Address in Cusco: Luis Vallejo Santoni (Manco Ccapac H-9), 3er Piso – Santiago – Cusco – Peru
Business Hours: Monday to Sunday: (From 9:00am to 12:00pm) – ( From 15:00 – 20:00):
HIKING TO MACHU PICCHU: The evening before you start your trek, you will be given a SMALL DUFFLE BAG to pack your clothes for the next four days. Your weight allowance is 7kg/15p max. While you hike, the bulk of your luggage will be stored at your hotel in Cuzco.
Your team of porters will carry your duffle bag for you, together with the food and camping gear. It’s important to be aware that you will not have access to your items in the duffle bag until the end of each day, as the porters will always be ahead of the group.
For during the trek, you need a day pack big enough to carry personal belongings such as a warm jacket, a rain jacket, your camera, sun cream, snacks, water, etc. Usually a 30 to 50 litres capacity back pack is big enough.
FITNESS: The Inca Trail is certainly not easy but you do not need to be an athlete or a trekking expert to complete it. Fitness is naturally important but the Inca Trail is the kind of trek that anyone with a positive attitude and determination can do. Obviously the more fit you are the more you will enjoy the trail and the more chance you will have to take in the scenery and appreciate the Inca ruins dotted along the way. If you do not exercise regularly, it is advisable to do some extra walking or some kind of aerobic activity in the months leading up to your trip.
Many people worry whether they will be able to cope physically but complete failure is rare and would usually only result from severe altitude sickness or a person lacking even a basic level of fitness. People of all ages (from teenagers to pensioners) complete the trek and age itself is no barrier if you are positive minded and live an active lifestyle. Before departing for your tour, we recommend visiting your doctor who will be able to provide you with more information.
TRAVEL INSURANCE: Travel insurance is compulsory for all our trips. We require that, at a minimum, you are covered for medical expenses including emergency repatriation. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects.
When travelling on a trip, you won’t be permitted to join the trip until evidence of travel insurance and the insurance company’s 24 hour emergency contact number has been seen by our local representative.
If you have credit card insurance our local representative will require details of the participating insurer/underwriter, the level of coverage, policy number and emergency contact telephone number rather than the bank’s name and credit card details. Please contact your bank for these details prior to arriving in-country.
ARE WE SUSTAINABLE? Yes, We are a local sustainable & responsible tourism operator for that we incorporate the universal principle of tourism: protect the environment and benefit the local communities respecting their culture and religion. To this end, we have trained all our local staff that know, understand, feel and respect the place and the people.
ARE WE RESPONSIBLE?: Yes, We try to treat our hikers, our porters and all the local people from the villages with the upmost respect. We travel in small groups to give personalized tours to each traveller, we pay good salaries to our porters and follow the porters law. We provide all our porters with their hiking gear such as shoes, pants, jackets, t-shirts, hats, sleeping bags and most importantly, with health insurance.
STORAGE DURING THE TREK: During the trek to Machu Picchu your main luggage will be stored in Cuzco and you will receive a small duffle bag at your Inca Trail briefing (briefings are normally set for the evening before you start the trek) to pack clothes for 3-4 days. Your team of porters will carry these bags together with the food and equipment for the trail. Please note that you will not have access to these items until the end of each day as the porters will always be ahead of the group, you should therefore bring a day pack in which you can carry personal belongings such as your camera, water and sun screen etc. By Peruvian law the duffle bag carried by the porters must not weigh more than 7kg (14pounds). You can either store your luggage at your hotel or you can leave it with us.
BOOKING: The Inca Trail Trek is very successful so you must book it 5-6 months ahead during the high season and at least 3 months during the low season.