Discover Choquequirao, the lost Incan city

Terra Explorer
December 15, 2020

Did you know that there exists an archeological site that is bigger than Machu Picchu and receives an average of 22 visits per day, and it’s also located in the navel of the world? Choquequirao, one of the places to visit in Cusco that should not be missed!


It is an archeological site as important as Machu Picchu, but it receives fewer visitors due to its remoteness and tricky access. However, it has become the perfect destination for adventure tourism lovers who want to explore an alternative trek in the region of Cusco.


Looking for a new and exciting adventure? We invite you to discover Choquequirao, Peru´s lesser-known lost Incan city, and experience the unique journey that our team of experts has designed, maintaining the comfort and luxury of our adventure tours.


Choquequirao: the last Inca fortress



Considered one of the last Inca settlements, its origin dates back to the successors Inca Pachacútec, Túpac Inca Yupanqui, or Huayna Cápac, between the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries.


This archeological complex was destined for public ceremonies such as worships to the sun, water, earth, among others.


It is said that the Incas of the Manco dynasty resisted in Choquequirao fortress for 36 years until the capture and execution of Túpac Amaru I in 1572.


For many, it was the most important religious center and possible entry control point towards the Vilcabamba region. And like Machu Picchu, the most famous Inca citadel in the world, it was abandoned and hidden away in the jungle until its rediscovery.


Choquequirao, a cultural, religious and agricultural center



Recently discovered in 1970, Choquequirao is an archeological site that covers ​​1819 hectares (more extensive than the citadel of Machu Picchu), of which only 30% has been unveiled.


Its name comes from Quechua Chuqi, which means gold and K’iraw, cradle. The “cradle of gold” is located at 3,103 m.a.s.l. on the dramatic canyon of the Urubamba river, in the Apurimac valley, in the Convention province of Cusco.


Choquequirao is considered a cultural, religious, and agricultural center. Its most important buildings are made of quartzite, while the rest of the complex has been made of raw stone. Its structure and architecture are very similar to Machu Picchu´s and therefore considered as the younger sister of this wonder of the world.


The only way to get to Choquequirao is on foot, you will be able to enjoy a fantastic trek, surrounded by endless and breathtaking vistas of the lesser-known landscapes of Cusco.


Visit Choquequirao with Terra Explorer



In Terra Explorer, we invite you to do a 5-day trek to the archeological complex of Choquequirao. Walk along the slopes of one of the deepest canyons in the world while hiking to the citadel.


The hike that we propose at Terra Explorer is a 60 km journey through unspoiled natural landscapes, from extraordinary snow-capped mountains to tropical forests, while appreciating a wide diversity of flora and fauna. It is one of the most demanding and rewarding trails of the Peruvian Andes.


We leave the town of Cachora, walking in front of Padreyoc snow-capped mountain and then ascend to Capuliyoc pass (2900 mt). From there, we will appreciate the Apurimac valley, and in the distance, we will be able to observe the Inca citadel of Choquequirao.



During days 2 and 3, we will continue our way towards the hidden sanctuary, visiting Rosalina beach and crossing a bridge over the river that bears the same name. We will have a full day to explore Choquequirao since we will camp two nights in a place near the Inca fortress.


On days 4 and 5, we will make our way back to Cusco along the same route, admiring for the last time the indescribable beauty of its landscapes.


If you are looking to discover other wonders that Cusco has to offer in luxury and comfort, Choquequirao is an excellent alternative to experience a unique quest through the Andes.


Now that you know more about this extraordinary place, would you like to see it? In Terra Explorer, we have various itineraries for you. If you want to be part of our adventures and know Peru in an authentic and spectacular way, get in touch with us, and we will help you design the trip of your dreams!

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