This trekking option offers you the most beautiful views on the Inca trail as you have more time to spend at the Inca ruins and to enjoy the views. The 5 day Inca Trail is a great option for families with kids or anyone who would like be on the Inca trail with less crowds and camp at the best campsites…
On our way there, you will be able to see spectacular views of farmlands, snow-capped mountains and the mighty Urubamba River; one of the sources of the Amazon River. We will also be making the 3 hour hike to the most beautiful Incan site on the Inca Trail – Wiñay Wayna (Forever Young) at 2600m. This is a wonderful Incan site that many people never get to see. Here, there is an elaborate water fountain, temples, and some agricultural terraces which provide a perfect opportunity to learn more about the way of the Incans.
Every morning, become exhilarated as our porters prepare delicious – and nutritious! – coca tea. One of the days, we will be hiking upwards through Dead Woman’s pass. What makes Dead Woman’s Pass so famous (or infamous) is its altitude. At 4,215m (13,828 ft), it’s the highest (and most dreaded) point of the Inca Trail, and nearly 1,800m (5,905 ft) higher than the altitude of Machu Picchu itself. The pass comes during the second day of the hike, often perceived to be the most challenging. But not to worry, the beautiful views of the scenery are beyond worth the hike. After visiting many Inca sites throughout the day, we can enjoy the sunset over the Vilcabamba mountain range, atfer ascending through the Pacaymayu (Hidden River) Valley.
However, one day in particular may be the most beautiful – passing through the Inca flat (gradual inclines) and begin to enter the peak of the jungle, which is also known as the cloud forest. As we walk we will have the opportunity to see the beauty of the Salkantay snow capped peak and a fantastic panoramic view of the Vilcabamba mountain range. Towards the end of the Inca flat we begin to make our way up to the last peak at Phuyupatamarka (3600 meters) from where we get great views overlooking the Urubamba river. Down the valley we get our first views of Machu Picchu mountain but the site is still hidden from view. Later in the evening, we will have a final Incan feast.
The last day, we finally finish our trek at the archaeological site you’ve been waiting for. Machu Picchu is tangible evidence of the urban Inca Empire at the peak of its power and achievement—a citadel of cut stone fit together without mortar so tightly that its cracks still can’t be penetrated by a knife blade.
DAY 1 – Cusco – Km 82 – Llactapata – Hatunchaca.
- Inca trail briefing the night before your trek.
- Pick up from your hotel
- Drive to KM 82 – Breakfast with great views of the Inca trail.
- Inca sites Kanabamba – Llactapata.
- Lunch at 1:00 pm.
- Walking distance 11 km
- Trail head elevation 2,720 m
- Camp site elevation 2,950 meters.
DAY 2 – Hatunchaca – Dead Womens’ Pass – Pacay Mayo.
- Meet with local rangers and present planting tools to them
- Total distance: 10 km (7.376 miles)
- Estimated walking time: 6 hours
- Maximum altitude point: 4,215 m (13,821 ft)
- Campsite altitude: 3,600 m (11,811 ft)
Day 3 – Pacay Mayo – chaquikocha – Phuyupatamaraka.
- Visiting two existing Inca sites – Runkuracay – Sayacmarca ( inaccessible inca ruins )
- Total distance: 13 km (8.136 miles)
- Estimated walking time: 9 hours
- Maximum altitude point: 4,000 (13,123 ft )
- Campsite altitude: 3,680 m (12,033 ft)
Day 4 – Phuyu Patamarca – Winayhuayna – Sun Gate – Machu Picchu – Aguas Calientes town
- Explore amazing Inca sites – Phuyu Patamaraca ( Village Above the Clouds ) Intipata (Terraces of the Sun ) Winayhuayna (Forever Young)
- Total distance: 11 km (6.14 miles)
- Estimated walking time: 5 hours
- Maximum altitude point: 3,680 m (12,033 ft)
- Hotel altitude: 2,000 m (6,561 ft)
- 3 Star Hotel, or optional upgrade to any hotel (ask your guide!)
Day 5 – The most important day – the lost city of the Incas.
- Wake up early
- Breakfast at hotel
- Bus up to Machu Picchu
- Enjoy the sun rise if the weather allows
- Guide tour of 2.5 hours
- Climb to Huayna Picchu ( book it in advance $ 65 )
- Lunch in Aguas Calientes
- Take afternoon train to Ollantaytambo + bus to Cusco and your hotel in total will be 4 hours
- Train times 2:55 pm, 4:45 pm or 6:45 pm depending of the Availability on Peru Rail
This option offers you the most beautiful views on the Inca trail as you have more time to spend at the Inca ruins enjoying the views. The 5 day Inca Trail is a great option for families with children or anyone who would like be on the Inca trail with less crowds and stay at the best campsites…
Day 1: CUSCO – OLLANTAYTAMBO – KM 82 – WAYLLABAMBA.
We depart Cusco at 5:00am with private transport, which will drive us to KM 82- the starting point of the Inca Trail. We start our hike walking along the left shore of the Urubamba River following the trail along a flat terrain to the community of Miskay (2,800m/9,184ft). The first 2 hours of the trek are relatively easy as we make our way to our first Inca site, Patallacta, which was an Inca checkpoint for the approach to Machu Picchu. After our arrival close to Patallacta we make our way down in to the canyon to a great lunchspot and can enjoy the views of Patallacta. From Patallacta we carry on along the trail, taking things easy and enjoying the scenery and the stories your guide will tell you. It´s about a 2 hour walk to get to our camping site at the village Wayllabamba (3,300 meters).
Total distance: 12 km (7,800 miles)
Estimated walking time: 4 hours
Maximum altitude point: 2,600 m (8,692 ft)
Campsite altitude: 3000 m (9,842 ft)
Day 2: WAYLLABAMBA – DEAD WOMAN’S PASS – PACAYMAYO.
Your porters will wake you up early with a hot cup of coca tea to get you ready for the day. Today is our longest day and we will start with an early wake up. We’ll hike for roughly 4 hours to the highest pass of the trek, Dead Woman’s Pass (4215 meters), the views as we make our way up are fantastic with beautiful views of snow-capped mountains and the cloud forest all around us. This first stretch is the most difficult part of the trek, it consists of an abrupt and steep ascent that stretches for 9 km and brings us to the first mountain pass in the Inca Trail, Abra Warmihuañusca (Dead Woman’s Pass). Luckily, we only climb half way up the pass as we have plenty of time to get to our destination. We have a stop at Llulluchapampa to relax and to buy any last essentials that you need. If we’re lucky, we may see deer and falcons in this area. From Llulluchapampa the landscape changes from cloud forest to the puna (a dry and high area with little vegetation) and we have the chance to spot domesticated llamas and alpacas grazing on ichu (one of the few plants that grow at that altitude). It´s about a 2 hour walk up to the pass where we can enjoy the beautiful panorama and enjoy a refreshing cup of coca tea. After we’ve made it to the pass, it’s downhill for the rest of the day. After about 2 hours we´ll stop for lunch and then have free time during the afternoon in the Pacaymayo valley.
Total distance: 10 km (7.376 miles)
Estimated walking time: 6 hours
Maximum altitude point: 4,215 m (13,821 ft)
Campsite altitude: 3,600 m (11,811 ft)
Day 3: PACAYMAYO – RUNCURACCAY PASS- SAYACMARACA RUINS- PHUYUPATAMARCA.
After breakfast, we continue our hike up the opposite side of the valley as we make our way towards the second pass on the trek. Along the way we have fantastic views of waterfalls and interesting flora and fauna. Half way up we stop for a quick visit to the Inca site of Runcuraccay (an Incan watchtower) and to catch our breath before we continue our climb to the pass (4,000 meters). From the pass we once again begin our descent heading back in to the cloud forest. After about an hour we arrive to Sayacmarca, one of the most beautiful ruins on the Inca Trail where we´ll have a guided tour for about an hour. From Sayacmarca we continue on down to our lunch spot at Chaquicocha (Dry Lake). From Chaquicocha onwards we walk along Inca Flat (gradual inclines) as we make our way towards our final campsite, Phuyupatamarca (3,680 meters). This area of the Inca Trail is stunning with beautiful views of the Vilcabamba mountain range in the distance. It’s about 2 hours walk to our campsite and upon arrival we´ll get our first view of Machu Picchu mountain and the Urubamba river below us. We’ll settle in to our campsite and have the chance to explore the Inca site. In the evening, we enjoy the beautiful sunset over the snow-capped peaks.
Total distance: 13 km (8.136 miles)
Estimated walking time: 9 hours
Maximum altitude point: 4,000 (13,123 ft )
Campsite altitude: 3,680 m (12,033 ft)
Day 4: PHUYUPATAMARCA – WIÑAYHUAYNA – SUNGATE – MACHUPICCHU – AGUAS CALIENTES.
On this day we might have the chance to appreciate one of the most spectacular sunrises on the Inca Trail, provided we have clear skies. After breakfast you´ll have a guided tour of Phuyupatamarca and then we start our descent on the stone steps which will lead us to Wiñaywayna (2,650m/8,692ft) which is where we will spend the night. As we near the bottom of the steps we´ll take a side path off the main route to visit the site of Intipata (Terraces of the Sun). This site has beautiful views of the Sacred Valley and was an important agricultural site for Machu Picchu. We´ll spend some time exploring Intipata and then continue on to Wiñaywayna. Wiñaywayna is the biggest archaeological site in the Inca Trail besides Machu Picchu. It consists of an impressive complex made up of an agricultural center with numerous terraces, a religious sector, and an urban sector, all offering spectacular views of Urubamba River Valley. After our visit, we will have one last lunch with our porters and say goodbye. It is a tradition on the Inca Trail to have a gratitude ceremony for all the hard work the porters and cooks have done. If you like, this is the appropriate time to tip them. After we’ve said goodbye, we carry on to the Sun Gate (Intipunku) where we´ll get our first views of Machu Picchu. It takes about an hour of hiking along a trail of flat stones on the edges of cliffs in highland jungle to reach the Sun Gate and it is about another hour down to the site itself. Upon arrival we´ll have a chance to enjoy the sunset and to see Machu Picchu without any crowds before taking the bus to the town of Aguas Calientes where we will check in to our hotel.
Total distance: 11 km (6.14 miles)
Estimated walking time: 5 hours
Maximum altitude point: 3,680 m (12,033 ft)
Campsite altitude: 2,000 m (6,561 ft)
Day 5: THE MOST IMPORTANT DAY – THE LOST CITY OF THE INCAS
We wake up early and board one of the first buses which will take us up to Machu Picchu to enjoy the sunrise at the citadel (if the weather allows). You´ll have a complete guided tour of the Inca citadel that will take approximately two hours and then some free time to explore. If you have the permit, then you can climb up Huayna Picchu Mountain (must book in advance -costs $65 per person) and enjoy the fantastic view. If not, you can visit the Inca Bridge and explore more. We will meet back up again in Aguas Calientes for our last lunch and then take the afternoon train back to Ollantaytambo, where we get our private bus back to cusco.
INCLUDED IN THE TREK
- Native ceremony with your tour guide
- Pick up from your hotel by your tour guide
- Transfer to the start of your trek, KM 82
- Professional English speaking tour guide
- Entrance fee to the Inca Trail National Park
- Entrance fee to Machu Picchu Archaeological Sanctuary
- Super WalkingTree porters to carry all the equipment, tents, food, cooking gear, and dining tents
- Permits and entrance fees for our porters and cooks
- 5 breakfasts, 5 snacks, 4 lunches, 4 happy hours, and 4 dinners. All of these meals are prepared by our trained chef and his assistant
- Coca tea served each morning in your tent for a gentle start to the day
- Boiled water after breakfast, lunch and dinner to refill your water bottles
- Happy hour including hot drinks such as mate de coca and locally grown coffee which is prepared by our cook
- Snacks every morning
- Oxygen tank and first aid kit
- Vegetarian food and specialized diets on request
- 2 people per tent (4 man tents, clean, waterproof)
- All camping equipment
- 2 or 3 hrs guided tour of Machu Picchu
- Bus from Machu Picchu down to Aguas Calientes village
- Expedition train return to Ollantaytambo then by bus to Cusco
- OPTIONAL: Extra personal belongings ( 7 kg = $ 75 for 4 days)
- Last lunch in Aguas Calientes
- Original passport
- Student ISIC card (www.isic.org) if it is applicable (needs to be sent at the time of your booking)
- Day Pack
- Hiking boots and sandals (very important)
- Warm clothes: layers for variable temperatures, especially at night. Thermals/gloves/scarves; wool socks /wool hat for cold nights: About 4 T-shirts for the entire trek
- Head lamp (very important)
- Camera and extra batteries
- Sunscreen/hat and sunglasses
- Personal medical kit
- Insect repellent
- Rain Gear: a good rain jacket and rain pants and plastic rain poncho
- Toilet paper
- Small towel
- Camel bag – if not you can take plastic bottles for water
- Extra money for drinks & tips, souvenirs, etc. (soles or dollars) At least 200 extra soles
- Bathing clothes for the hot springs (optional.) Recommended for those who stay extra night
- OPTIONAL: Bring your own sleeping bag, trekking poles
At pumapath, your comfort and safety are of our utmost concern. Therefore, we provide all necessary camping equipment for your trek. Included in prices are: sleeping tent, rollmat and pillow for your comfort. Please feel free to bring your own sleeping bag if you prefer.
5 Day Inca Trail Including Personal Porter (7kg)
- 2 people : US$985 per person
- 3 people : US$895 per person
- 4 people : US$845 per person
- 5 people : US$795 per person
- 6 people : US$765 per person
- 7+ people : US$735 per person
- Student Discount (with valid ISIC card) – $35
- Sleeping Bag (4 season) – $30 (Maximum size 1.95m / 6´4″)
- Pair of Walking poles – $25
- Air matresses – $30
- Single Tent Supplement US$75
- Personal Porter (half) to carry 7kg of personal items US$90
- Full Porter to carry 14kg of personal items US$180
*****IMPORTANT NOTES *****
NEED A PERMIT: In order to book your Inca Trail treks, the Peruvian authorities cap the number of Inca Trail trekking permits to 500 per day. Everyone entering the trail needs a permit including the trekker, guide, porters and other support staff. Permits often sell out several months in advance and you must book well ahead to secure your place.
When you fill in our booking form you must fill in alternative start dates that are possible for you to begin the trek and these have to be validated. If your preferred date is sold out we will use one of these alternative dates for your permit. Once we purchase your permit from the National Park office, you are 100% confirmed to start this day; this date cannot be changed. Permits are completely non-refundable or transferable, so please make sure the date you booked is a good date to start this adventure.
Your permit is linked to your name and passport number. If you change your passport after booking your Inca Trail trek permit or you plan to travel with a different passport, you MUST also bring the passport you used to book your permit, or you will not be able to trek the Inca Trail trek.
STUDENTS: If you booked your trek with your International Student Identity Card (ISIC) you must have this card and it must be valid for you to enter the trail. If you purchased a permit with the student discount and you do not bring your ISIC card or it is not valid at the time of your trek start they will not allow you to enter the trail. These are National Park rules.
HUAYNA PICCHU: Only 400 people can climb this mountain per day, so this ticket also needs to be booked in advanced. The price is $65 per person (read our Huaynapicchu sidebar about this cost). It is recommended to climb Huayna Picchu in the 10-11am time slot as otherwise you miss your guided tour. It is recommended to have this booked about 2 months in advance to secure your permit.
EXTRA NIGHT: If you want to stay longer at Machu Picchu then you can book an extra night at Aguas Calientes village. Just let us know that you plan to stay an extra night so we can organize your return train for the next day. You can either organize your accommodation by yourself or we can assist with making bookings. If you were thinking of going back to Machu Picchu the next day then you will have to buy a new entrance fee to Machu Picchu and the bus tickets for about $70.
RETURN TRAIN TO CUSCO: The return train is the Expedition train which departs either at 2:55, 4:20, 4:42 or 6:40 pm. The train that is booked depends on availability and is confirmed at your briefing. There is an option to upgrade your train to the Vistadome train, which is an extra $65 per person. Please let us know your preference at the time of booking. None of the trains go straight to Cusco, they run either to Ollantaytambo or Poroy but in either case we will transfer you back by bus to your hotel.
FOOD ON THE TREK: Definitely one of the highlights of the tour is the food. It is always fresh and most of it is organic. There is always a lot to eat and lots of options including vegetables, meat, chicken, fish and other types of protein and carbohydrates. Everyone sits down to eat together and we go out of our way to accommodate all dietary requirements including vegetarian options and any food allergies. We do not provide any alcoholic drinks on the trek but if you would like you can bring your own.
OUR EQUIPMENT: We provide 4 person tents for every 2 people, sleeping bags and foam mattresses for everyone. Our dining equipment includes a spacious dining tent, tables and chairs, plates and utensils. We do NOT supply walking sticks, but they can be rented from PumaPath. We bring an extra blanket for all our hikers for those especially cold nights. Just ask and your guide will provide you with this.
OUR GUIDES, COOK AND PORTERS: All of them are amazing, helpful, caring and great people to be around. Our guides speak excellent English and are patient and very informative. Our cooks provide amazing family-style food for you and our porters and you will be impressed with what they can whip up in the middle of the mountains! Your porters will carry everything for you which makes your trek as easy and comfortable as possible. Thanks to them you will finish your trek and have a great time. Our porters are called ´WE ARE PUMAS…´ on the Inca Trail.
We make sure that all our team are well looked after and we provide all the equipment that they need so that they can do the trek in as much comfort as possible.
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 or not 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.
STORAGE DURING YOUR TREK: During the Inca Trail trek 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 your clothes in 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 the rest of your luggage at your hotel or you can leave it with us.