8 Days

Inca Trail and the Sacred Valley (Private)

5.0 - Based on 1 travel review

From

$2725/ Adult

Minimum 2 passengers

Please Note: This trip is currently only available for private bookings with a minimum of 2 people on the date of your choice. Pricing will be based on your level of accommodations and the number of people in your group. Your trip is not guaranteed until permits are secured. Should there not be permits available for the Inca Trail, an alternate hike can be arranged.

Why travel with us?

What's Included

  • 4 nights hotel/ 3 nights camping
  • Airport Transfers
  • Tours in private, with English speaking guide
  • Hotels in Budget, Comfort, or Luxury options
  • All meals indicated in the itinerary
  • All transfers listed in the itinerary
  • Half-Day Cusco Walking Tour & Nearby Ruins
  • Guided tour of Cusco Ruins, the Sacred Valley & Pisac ruins
  • Vistadome train from Aguas Calientes to Cusco
  • Inca Trail Services (transportation, guide, meals, tents)
  • Sleeping bag with sleeping liner
  • All entrance fees & permits
  • Bilingual, certified guides (with first aid kit and oxygen)

What's Excluded

  • Airfare
  • Airport taxes and excess baggage fees
  • Travel Insurance
  • Beverages & Meals not specified
  • Tips for your guide, porters, cook and crew, & drivers
  • Huayna Picchu Entrance Ticket ($62/ person - on your own/unguided; subject to availability)
  • Personal Expenses
  • Optional Activities
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Sustainability Commitment

We choose our local travel partners based on their commitment to social and community development and environmental preservation. Our local partners in Peru have been recognized and certified by the Rainforest Alliance, Regenera (Your Positive Impact for Nature), World Travel Awards for the World’s Leading Green Tour Operator, and APTAE Responsible Tourism. 

Overview

The Inca Trail Trek is a world-renowned hiking route that leads to the majestic ancient ruins of Machu Picchu, Peru. This iconic trek offers a unique blend of natural beauty, archaeological wonders, and a sense of adventure, making it one of the most popular trekking experiences in the world. Due to it's altitude, this itinerary was designed to give you the most amount of time to acclimate while exploring other ancient ruins throughout Cusco, Pisac, and the Sacred Valley.

Along the trek, hikers follow in the footsteps of the ancient Incas, walking on stone paths and traversing mountain passes, including the famous Dead Woman’s Pass, which stands at an elevation of 4,215 meters (13,825 feet). The trail offers breathtaking panoramic views of snow-capped peaks, deep valleys, and the surrounding lush landscapes.

The Inca Trail Trek is a once-in-a-lifetime adventure, offering a combination of breathtaking scenery, ancient history, and a profound connection to the Inca civilization. It is a truly transformative experience for those who seek to explore the wonders of Machu Picchu and immerse themselves in the rich cultural heritage of Peru.

Note: Due to its popularity and conservation efforts to protect the archaeological site, access to the Inca Trail is limited, and permits must be obtained in advance. The trail is also regulated to minimize environmental impact and ensure a sustainable trekking experience.

Adventure Highlights

  • 4-Day hike along the famous Inca Trail to the lost city of the Incas, Machu Picchu
  • Get acclimated while exploring the Cusco Ruins, the Sacred Valley, and Pisac Ruins
  • Enjoy a full-day guided tour of Machu Picchu with the option of climbing Huayna Picchu, named one of the 20 most dangerous hikes in the world by Outside Magazine
  • Soak in the hot springs of Aguas Calientes
  • Take a train surrounded entirely by glass with large panoramic windows from Machu Picchu to Cusco

Join a Small Group Tour

TRIP DATES AVAILABILITY PRICE
No Fixed Departure Dates available.

By booking this trip, you agree to the Booking Terms and Conditions.

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Daily Itinerary

Day 1 :
Cusco

Upon arrival, a representative will be waiting at the airport to transfer you to your hotel in Cusco where you can start acclimating to being at 11,000 ft elevation in this beautiful city. Along the way, you’ll make stops at Awanacancha and Pisac.

Awanacancha is a traditional weaving center located in the Sacred Valley. Here, you can witness the art of Andean textile weaving, which has been practiced for centuries. The center showcases various types of South American camelids, such as llamas, alpacas, and vicuñas. Visitors have the opportunity to observe the entire process of transforming raw wool into beautiful textiles. Additionally, you can purchase high-quality, locally-made textiles as souvenirs.

Pisac is another noteworthy stop on the route to Cusco. This town is famous for its Inca ruins and its vibrant market. The Pisac Market is a bustling place where you can find a wide array of handicrafts, textiles, ceramics, and jewelry. It’s a great opportunity to experience the rich culture of the region and interact with local artisans. The Pisac archaeological site is perched on a mountain and offers breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape. The site features impressive agricultural terraces, religious structures, and ceremonial spaces that provide insight into the advanced engineering and architectural skills of the ancient Incas.

Cusco was the historic capital of the Inca Empire from the 13th into the 16th century until the Spanish conquest. In 1983 Cusco was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.

Overnight in Cusco

Lunch
Hotel

Today, you’ll spend the day exploring Maras, Moray and Ollantaytambo in the Sacred Valley of Peru.

First is a visit to Maras, known for the famous Maras Salt Mines. The salt pans, perched on the slopes of the Andes, create a mesmerizing mosaic of terraced pools. You can witness the traditional salt extraction methods that have been passed down through generations. The contrast between the white salt ponds and the surrounding mountains makes for a picturesque setting, providing excellent photo opportunities.

After Maras, head to Moray, an archaeological site featuring circular terraces that served as an agricultural laboratory for the Incas. The varying microclimates within each terrace allowed the Incas to experiment with different crops and understand the optimal conditions for their growth. Exploring the concentric circles is not only a historical journey but also an opportunity to appreciate the ingenuity of Incan agricultural practices.

Overnight in Cusco

Breakfast, Lunch
Hotel

Your memorable journey begins by making our way across the riverbed from Cusco. We get up at sunrise, where our 5-day trek starts from a section of the Inca Trail that only few have the opportunity to visit. Most groups cross the Urubamba River at Km 82, but we’ll follow the river downstream and cross at Km 88, setting the tone for the rest of the trip – isolated, avoiding the crowds and having the landscapes all to ourselves.

Upon our arrival in Chamana, a small village that’s part of the Llaqtapata Community, a warm lunch will await us at our private campsite. As evening approaches, you will have the option to visit the archaeological sites of Wayna Q’ente and Llaqtapata, charming ruins of Incan stone walls, stairs, and other incredible ancient Incan monuments and constructions that will leave you in awe. By the end of the day, we are delighted to offer you teatime, a hot shower, and warm dinner, all while reminiscing on the day’s beautiful trekking in the outdoors!

Estimated Travel Time: 2-3 hours driving – 87.6 km (54.43 mi)
Estimated Trekking Time: 4.5 hours
Trekking Distance: 10.1 km
Overnight at Chamana Camp

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Camp

We continue our journey up the narrow Cusichaca Valley, passing houses inhabited by farmers and herdsmen, until we finally reach the Andean community of Huayllabamba. From here, the cobble-stoned Inca Trail ascends steeply through an ancient native forest bursting with melodic birdsong. The trail begins to level out at our campsite at Llulluchapampa, situated just below the first pass. Here, we’ll experience breathtaking views of Mt. Huayanay and a first glimpse of the rare Andean cloud forest of Quenua, or Polyepis trees. Their reddish bark peels into paper-like sheets, hence their familiar name, “Paper Tree.”

Estimated Trekking Time: 7-8 hours
Trekking Distance: 11.7 km (7.27 mi)
Overnight at Llulluchapampa Camp

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Camp

The day begins with a steady ascent up to Warmiwanusqa (Dead Woman’s) Pass (4228 masl / 13,871 fasl) where we’re met with panoramic views of the terrain we’ve just conquered. We can revel in a real sense of accomplishment at having reached this challenging high point of the journey. The pass is so named because its crest resembles a lying down woman. This point is nearly 1800 m (5905 ft) higher than Machu Picchu itself! Now, the much-welcomed descent to the Pacaymayo River lies ahead of us. After a hearty lunch in Pacaymayo, we ascend again to the ruins of Runkuraqay and our second pass (3968 masl / 13,018 fasl). From here, we walk down to the site of Sayacmarca on the original Inca Trail, passing a dry lake and our first signs of the mist-filled Andean cloud forest. Many plants and animals thrive in the cloud forest, including endemic species found nowhere else on Earth! We may spot hummingbirds, butterflies, and delicate orchids of various brilliant hues. Our trek along the steady ridge offers a bit of a respite from the day’s arduous climbs and challenging descents. Now we get to catch our breath a bit and admire incredible views of the beautiful Aobamba Valley below. We continue along the ridge through amazing landscapes and views of snow-capped Mt. Salkantay on the western side, as well as Mt. Pumasillo silhouetted on the horizon to the north. We follow the flag-stoned trail until we arrive at our campsite at Phuyupatamarca, whose name in Quechua means “village at the edge of the clouds”.

Estimated Trekking time: 8 hours
Trekking Distance: 12 km (approx 7.46 miles)
Overnight at Phuyupatamarca Campsite

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Camp

At last, we have arrived at the day we’ve all been waiting for; the day we get our first glimpse of the citadel of Machu Picchu! Early, but not too early, we’ll awaken for a glorious sunrise view just a short hike up the hill from our campsite, where our porters await us with steaming cups of tea. This site is known to deliver some of the most radiant sunrise views in the entire Machu Picchu Sanctuary.

After breakfast, we continue our trek along a buttress, passing the ruins at Phuyupatamarca. These ruins contain an irrigation system that was built over five centuries ago, and still works today! Now, the flag-stoned trail begins to wind sharply downwards, taking us into the cloud forest to the well-conserved ruins of Wiñay Wayna (“Forever Young”) located just below the ridge. Walking in the Inca’s footsteps, along the very same trail they once used, we now trek for two hours through dense, misty cloud forest until we at last reach Machu Picchu via Inti Punku (the Gate of the Sun). We will marvel at our first sight of the magnificent citadel of Machu Picchu spread out below us. After some time soaking up the glorious view, we’ll take a bus to the village of Machu Picchu, where we’ll spend the night at a local hotel.

Upon arrival, you’ll take a shuttle to your hotel in Aguas Calientes and once you get settled, relax your sore muscles in the Hot Springs of Aguas Calientes (not included).

Overnight in Aguas Calientes

Breakfast, Lunch
Hotel

A quick, half-hour bus ride brings us up the road to the gates of Machu Picchu where we’ll enjoy a guided three-hour tour of this ancient hilltop citadel. Exploring the different sectors and entering some of the houses and temples will bring these iconic ruins to life for us. As we immerse in this mystical place, we’ll feel that we’ve entered a dream of ancient times. Wandering among the Inca’s ancient manmade structures blended seamlessly into verdant natural surroundings will leave us with a sense of wonder and reverence that we may experience only once in a lifetime.

Optional: For those who want to get up early and do some more hiking, you’ll have the option of climbing Huayna Picchu, considered to be one of the highlights when visiting Machu Picchu. The climb itself is interesting as you will see how the Incas cut out steps in the rocks as you wind around the side of a mountain. It will also allow you to see Machu Picchu from different angles. From a distance, the mountain looks impossible to climb without necessary tools, but the climb is quite possible for anyone who is averagely fit. The views of Machu Picchu seen from Huayna Picchu are breathtaking and really gives you an impression of the magnitude of the site.

In the afternoon, you’ll return to the village where a train will take you back to Cusco.

Estimated Travel Time: 1 hour bus ride; 12.4 km (7.71 mi)
Train Ride: 1.45 hours; 43 km (26.72 mi)
Overnight in Cusco

Breakfast, Lunch
Hotel

This morning, enjoy a guided tour of Cusco and the nearby ruins, providing a glimpse into the rich history and cultural heritage of this ancient city. The ancient Inca capital of Cusco was planned out in the shape of a puma: the head of the puma is the fortress of Sacsayhuaman, which overlooks the city; the puma’s heart is the Qoricancha, or Temple of the Sun; and its body is formed by the converging rivers, Tullumayu and Huatanay.

Start your tour at the heart of Cusco, the Plaza de Armas. This historic square is surrounded by colonial buildings and the stunning Cusco Cathedral. Take some time to admire the architecture and learn about the history of this central gathering place.

Visit the Cusco Cathedral, an imposing structure that houses an impressive collection of colonial art. Marvel at the ornate interiors, religious artifacts, and beautiful paintings that reflect the blend of Inca and Spanish cultures.

Head to Qorikancha, the Temple of the Sun, which was one of the most important religious sites in the Inca Empire. Witness the incredible Inca stonework and observe how the Spanish built the Santo Domingo Church atop the Inca foundations.

This afternoon, depart from the city center and make your way to Sacsayhuaman, an Inca fortress located just above Cusco. Explore the massive stone structures and panoramic views of Cusco below. The precision of the Inca stonework is truly impressive.

Continue to Q’enqo, an archaeological site featuring intriguing rock carvings and a semi-circular amphitheater. This site was likely used for ceremonial purposes.

Visit Puca Pucara, known as the “Red Fortress,” an ancient military complex with defensive structures and terraces. Explore the site’s unique architecture and learn about its strategic importance.

Conclude your tour at Tambomachay, a site believed to have been dedicated to water worship. Admire the well-preserved fountains and aqueducts that showcase the Inca’s advanced hydraulic engineering.

Depart Cusco

Breakfast

FAQs

When is the best time to hike the Inca Trail?

Late March to May and September to Mid-December

How long is the Inca Trail?

The classic Inca Trail is approximately 26 miles (43 kilometers) long and takes about 4 days to complete.

Do I need a permit to hike the Inca Trail?

Yes, a permit is required to hike the Inca Trail, and it's essential to obtain one in advance. Permits are limited to protect the trail and the environment.

Is altitude sickness a concern on the Inca Trail?

Yes, altitude sickness can be a concern as the trail reaches high elevations. It's recommended to acclimatize in Cusco and the Sacred Valley before starting the trek and stay hydrated throughout.

How physically challenging is the Inca Trail?

The Inca Trail is moderately challenging, with steep ascents and descents. Trekkers should be in good physical condition and prepared for varying trail conditions.

Are there age restrictions for the Inca Trail?

While there is no strict age limit, trekkers should be in good health and physical condition. It's advisable to consult with a healthcare professional before embarking on the trek.

Do I need a guide for the Inca Trail?

Yes, trekking the Inca Trail requires a licensed guide. Independent trekking is not allowed, and you must join a guided tour with a registered tour operator.

What is the altitude of the highest point on the Inca Trail?

The highest point on the Inca Trail is the Warmiwañusca Pass, also known as Dead Woman's Pass, at an altitude of approximately 13,828 feet (4,215 meters).

Are there restroom facilities along the Inca Trail?

Basic restroom facilities are available at designated campsites, but they may be simple and not luxurious. Trekkers are encouraged to bring their own toilet paper.

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Inca Trail and the Sacred Valley (Private)

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