Peru is interconnected by thousands of miles of Inca roads, however, the section that reaches the citadel of Machu Picchu is among the most popular trekking routes of the world, by the natural beauty of its surroundings and for being one of the main routes used at the time of the Incas. This journey of 43 kilometers, ideal for adventure and history lovers, is a perfectly preserved section, combining different ecological zones, from high-altitude deserts to the rainforests, passing through important archaeological centers and experiencing incredible wildlife observation. Your tour ends, when we crossed the threshold of “Intipunku” (Gate of the Sun) to reach the magnificent citadel of Machu Picchu masterpiece of architecture and engineering Inca, considered a world heritage site and one of the seven wonders of the world.
Day 1: Cusco to Huallabamba
Today we drive till the 82km of the Sacred Valley of the Incas, to the community of Piscaycucho, the starting point of our trek. Here Terra Explorer Peru porters will be waiting with all the equipment ready. They are an essential part of this path and will accompany us throughout the tour. We begin our journey parallel to the Urubamba River, toward the town of Miskay, surrounded by beautiful views of the imposing Mount Veronica. From here we climb to the viewpoint of Llactapata, where we observe this ancient Inca agricultural center. At this point we say goodbye to the Urubamba Valley to introduce ourselves to the Huayllabamba Valley, where we camp in a village of the same name, built on the foundations of an ancient Inca settlement.
Day 2: Huayllabamba to Pacaymayo
We begin our journey ascending into Llulluchapampa, through an Uncas forest, Andean native tree; followed by a dwarf forest (Forest Midget); and finally to the top of the Inca trail: the gap of Warmihuyñuska (4200mt), where the landscape has transformed into an arid Andean highland. We descend nine hundred meters, by stone steps introducing us to a forest of clouds. In this area we have the opportunity to watch several species of endemic birds until we reach Pacaymayo area, where we camp.
Day 3: Pacaymayo to Phuyupatamarca
You could definitely say that today is the most beautiful of all the Inca Trail. In the morning, strategically, we wait for the other groups to go ahead, so we enjoy the Inca Trail by ourselves for the rest of the day. We begin our ascent towards the Runkurakay gap, where we can see the step of Warmiñuska and the valleys that descend to the Amazon. Then we enter fully into the cloud forest and continue to the ruins of Sallacmarca, by a wide, paved and well preserved Inca trail surrounded by orchids, ferns and bromelias; ideal habitat for birds such as hummingbirds and the spectacled bear, which hopefully can be seen in this area. Finally we continue to Phuyupatamarca, where we camp with a breathtaking view of the Urubamba and Vilcanota mountain ranges, which dissolve before our eyes to make way for Amazon. Simply amazing!
Day 4: Phuyupatamarca a Machu Picchu
This morning from our camp near the ruins of Phuyupatamarca we have the opportunity to see one of the most spectacular sunrises in the Andes, and a 360 ° view of the surrounding mountain ranges, including solid and impressive Salkantay Pumasillo. Afterwards we descend, almost 300 meters, to the ruins of Intipata, an ancient agriculture and experimental center, with a spectacular view over the valley of Urubamba. We continue to the most important archaeological site and impressive on the entire route: Winaywayna and then by a road covered with tropical vegetation, to Intipunku (“Gate of the Sun”), where we will have the first fabulous view of Machu Picchu. Here begins the final descent to the Inca citadel where we arrive to a privileged hour, so that is not common to see many tourists. Finally we descend by bus to Aguas Calientes, to rest and sleep in the hotel.
Day 5: Machu Picchu to Cusco
Today we visit very carefully Machu Picchu citadel. Upon our arrival we will have a complete guided tour of the site and then free time to explore by ourselves. Optionally, you can climb to the top of Huayna Picchu, from where we will see a unique way of the citadel, from a different angle, with a breathtaking view of the surrounding mountain peaks and the great canyon of Urubamba.In the afternoon, we’ll take a bus to the town of Aguas Calientes to board the train that will take us back to Cusco.