Choquequirao to Machu Picchu Trek
Experience three of the Incas’ crowning achievements on this unforgettable 11-day Choquequirao to Machu Picchu adventure. First immerse yourself in the Incan and colonial heritage of captivating Cuzco, before the main event: a 5-day trek to the vast, mythical ruins of Choquequirao. Perched atop a mountaintop in the remote and little-visited Vilcabamba Range, it’s a place very few tourists ever reach. Finally, top it all off with a visit to the fabled Sacred Valley and Machu Picchu, the Lost City of the Incas.
Starting from $4,190 per person
Pricing includes everything from your international arrival to your departure, with the exception of flights and a few lunches and dinners.
HOW IT WORKS
- A guided tour of Cuzco, with visits to Koricancha, one of the most important Incan temples, and Cuzco's Cathedral where you'll learn about the Cuzco School of Art.
- Camp in ultimate comfort and warmth, with quality sleeping bags and Therm-a-Rest sleeping mats in your spacious two-man tent. Porters will carry your kit, and you'll even have the use of a private tented bathroom in the campsite.
- Five full days on the remote and rugged Choquequirao Trek, a less popular but more pristine (and demanding!) alternative to the Inca Trail.
- A chance to visit the magnificent mountaintop citadel of Choquequirao, a place that very few people ever reach.
- An early morning visit to the “fact is stranger than fiction” temple of the waterfall at Choquequirao, set among one of the most ambitious sets of Inca terraces on the planet.
- The opportunity to savor breath-taking scenery and endemic fauna and flora from above, below and within the spectacular Apurimac Canyon.
Traveling from Lima to Cuzco you will have gone from sea level to the heady heights of 11,500 feet. To give you the chance to acclimatize, the first day is free for relaxation. But if you're up for a bit of exploring, the city center is pedestrian-friendly and full of fascinating sites, colors and people. We're happy to recommend the city's best options for delicious dining and exciting shopping.
During your tour of Cuzco, the capital of the Incan Empire, you'll visit Sacsayhuaman, an immense Incan complex with impressive stonework, and Koricancha, one of the most important Incan temples (the walls were once actually coated in gold!). You’ll also stop at Cuzco's Cathedral where you'll learn about the intricacies of the Cuzco school of art and view fascinating historical artefacts.
The big day has finally dawned! Awake early today for your drive northwest towards Limatambo and the Apurimac River. You'll pass San Pedro Cachora en route to the trailhead at Capuliyoq (3,000m.a.s.l./ 9,840ft.a.s.l.). The first day of hiking is characterized by incredible views of the snowcapped Padreyoq Mountain and the Apurimac Canyon below and a gentle descent into the canyon. You will camp at Santa Rosa (2,100m.a.s.l. / 6,000 ft.a.s.l.).
Make sure you have a hearty breakfast, because today is almost all ascent! After crossing the Apurimac River on a rudimentary bridge, you will hike for around 5 hours (plenty of time to enjoy the fauna, flora and scenery) to the tiny village of Maranpata (3,000 m.a.s.l. /9,800 ft.a.s.l), and then onward to Choquequirao, your camp for the next two nights.
Today you’ll spend a full day exploring the Choquequirao complex. Experts estimate that Choquequirao is seven times larger than Machu Picchu, with only fifteen percent of the citadel recovered from the jungle so far. Your guide will show you the major sections of the ruins, sharing the history of this logic-defying site. You will finish the day with another night at your camp in the cloud forest below the plaza at Choquequirao.
After yet another early breakfast, you will visit the mesmerizing waterfall temple in the lower sector of Choquequirao before dropping down to the base of the Apurimac Canyon and following the watercourse towards Huanipaca. You will then climb to the languid old hacienda of San Ignacio, to camp among mango and papaya groves overlooking the Apurimac canyon.
Ascending from Hacienda San Ignacio, you will hike 3 hours to the subtropical oasis that is the Los Loros lodge. After enjoying an ice-cold drink from the bar, you will be picked up for the four hour drive back to Cusco. You will get back to Cusco mid by mid-evening ( a hot shower never felt so good!) to rest up ahead of your train ride to Machu Picchu the following morning.
Prepare to have your breath taken away! Your Sacred Valley exploration will include visits to the ancient circular agricultural terraces of Moray, the salt mines at Maras, and the ruins and village of Ollantaytambo. From Ollantaytambo, you’ll be treated to a scenic train ride through the Sacred Valley to the town of Aguas Calientes where you will stay in comfort to await the highlight of our tour.
This is one for your bucket list. Uncover the mystical secrets of Machu Picchu during a guided private tour of this Incan citadel. You'll have the opportunity to visit the most important parts of the ruins to wonder at how they were constructed. You can also hike to the top of Huayna Picchu for a bird's eye view of the ruins and valley beneath you. The steep path takes about an hour and a half to ascend. After a day you’ll remember for the rest of your life, you’ll depart from Aguas Calientes by train for Ollantaytambo. Upon arrival at the train station you will be met and transferred to your Cuzco hotel.
You will be picked up from your hotel and driven to the Cuzco airport for your flight to Lima. Optional upgrade before international flight home: Private Lima City Tour which includes a visit to the historical center, the Larco Archeology Museum and Casa Aliaga, the longest continually owned colonial home in the Americas.
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