Eddy Wilfredo Gibaja Tapia
Born in Ollantaytambo, Peru, Wilfredo has been a tour guide and trek leader for over 20 years. He is an expert in native history and culture - which has been passed down to him through his family for generations. Owner of the acclaimed Puma Path Adventures Peru - trekking company, his experience in planning and executing trekking and touring experiences is beyond reproach. An experience planned by Eddy is always an adventure!
Born in the Andes Mountains in Peru, South America and then raised in the United States, Maria innately brings the wisdom of the land coupled with the experience of her personal life journeys from around the world. Maria is dedicated to learning and creating life-changing experiences that act as a catapult for other people's personal growth
As a former journalist, she has always been passionate about empowering other people and their community. While assistant director of the Oasis Therapy Center at world-renown Hippocrates Health Institute in Florida, she witnessed the vast shifts that take place when mind, body and spirit are addressed at the same time and brought into balance. She is committed to creating new programs that bring peace and wellness to all facets of the human experience. Maria believes taking time to rediscover yourself and the land around you is an adventure of a lifetime.
Someone asked the Dalai Lama what surprised him the most. This was his response.
Man, because he sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health and then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present; the result being that he does not live in the present or the future; he lives as if he is never going to die and then he dies having never really lived.
Our guides are experienced professional tour guides that are experts in native history and culture. They are prepared and fully licensed in Medical First Aid. All of our tour guides are native residents of Peru, speak English, Spanish and Quechua fluently and have degrees in tourism. They will give you the best personal touch, often times sharing tradition that has been passed down through their families for generations.
Our chefs have all studied Peruvian and international cuisine. They are all certified from Culinary Institutes. Our chefs prepare a huge variety of delicious meals that not only will give you sustenance on your trek, but will constantly amaze you that they have cooked such delicacies onsight – on the trail. Special meal considerations are accommodated – for example vegetarian and food allergies.
Most of our chefs are from the local communities. This is the way that we are helping to give back to the local economy.
A porter is the most important person on the route to the Inca Trail and perhaps the most misunderstood both by tourists as well as Inca Trail tour operators.
We say it’s the most important because they are the ones taking all the necessary implements to make your tour as pleasant as possible.
Sadly, many tour operators don’t give them the importance they deserve, NOT providing them with adequate clothing for their jobs, overloading them, not providing special gear for carrying things, paying them very low salaries and especially, giving them very poor nutrition. Because of this, you will see thirsty, hungry porters with a low morale along the Inca Trail.
Our government has created the Law of the Porter, in which tour agencies are required to give porters appropriate conditions, though sadly many of these regulations are not met.
Please feel free to make sure that the agency you are hiring (us!) really respects the Porter Law and ask for proof of this. Otherwise you will be part of this ill-treatment.
Normally low prices imply ill-treatment and/or exploitation of Inca Trail porters.
Watch and see how our porters work.
Puma Path treats its porters well.
- Our porters and cooks work with us on a regular basis.
- Our porters have Life Insurance
- The families of the porters directly obtain the benefits of working with us.
- There is a house in Cusco where all the porters can rest before and after the journey
Our horsemen are local individuals from the communities. They have been working as horsemen their entire lives – many of them are carrying on family tradition. The horsemen are an essential part of our trek, as they scout out the best sites for us to camp, they prepare our tents for our arrival, and make the campfire for us. In addition, they take care of all of our equipment and pack the horses and lead them on the trail.