Choquequirao Trek to Machu Picchu 9D/8N

Overview

The Choquequirao trek to Machu Picchu is just an spectacular trek through the Andes in the Cusco region. This trek connects Choquequirao, knowm as the Machu Picchu’s sister city or the other Machu Picchu, with the most spectacular work of the Incas; Machu Picchu through an old Inca trail. This trek was listed on the National Geographic 2015 as one of the best treks in the world.

During this trek you will get to see the great Choquequirao ruins that offers amazing views of snow-capped mountains, deep canyons, wild life such as the Andean Condor, Old Inca trails, ancient ruins.

Itinerary

Pre-Trek Briefing:

You will have a thorough briefing with your guide 1 or 2 days before your trek. Your guide will meet you at your hotel and you can take this opportunity to ask questions and make any final preparations.

Day 1: Cusco – Capuliyoc – Chiquisca – Playa Rosalina

We will pick you up at 5:30am for about 4 hour drive in our private transport to Capuliyoc 2915m / 9563 ft). We will stop in the town of Curawasi for breakfast, The views along the way are spectacular that will make the journey enjoyable as well as appreciate heards of cows, cheeps, mountain villages.

Once at Capuliyuc we meet our horsemen and horses and pack all our equipment onto the horses, including food, tents and our gear for the night

We then start by walking in up and down terain to Capuliyoc view point from here we will have great views of the deep Apurimac canyon, snow capped mountains and the majestic Choquequirao way far on top of the mountains.

After reaching Chuiquica qe will stop for lunchbased o organic and nutricious meal. Our food is a definition of deluxe, while we eat we get to enjoy great views of Apurimac Canyon, snow-capped mountains such as Padreyoc. After lunch we then descend for two hours to our first campsite at La Playa Rosalida that is the base of the canyon where we will spend the night.

  • Lowest Elevation: 1,475m / 4839ft
  • Highest Elevation: 2915 m/ 9563 ft
  • Distance to walk: 10.3 / 6.4 miles
  • Approximate walking time: 6 hours
  • Level of Difficulty: Moderate
  • Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Day 2: Playa Rosalina – Choquequirao Campsite

We will wake up by 5am and have early breakfast, so to ascend 1400m / 4,600ft, we will reach the small town call Maranpata for a delicious lunch, after meal and NAP, and then we will walk towards the campsite of Choquequirao that near the ruins, and the 2 hours hike will be much easier than the moorning hike.

One we make to camp tents will be set ready, because the up hills we will be probably swety so, if you want to take shower you have a change to tak cold one for free or just sit and relax watching the sun set.

  • Lowest Elevation: 1,475m / 4, 839 ft
  • Highest Elevation: 2,817m / 9,242 ft
  • Distance to walk: 10 km/ 6.2 miles
  • Approximate walking time: 6 hours
  • Level of Difficulty: Demanding
  • Meals: breakfast, lunch and dinner

Day 3: Choquequirao Ruins Tour – Pinchaunuyoc

The day arrives to see the ruins of choquequirao, after a nutrisious breakfast we will walk up to the main area to visit the main plaza, usno or ceremonial platform, store houses and others.

We will definitely go to Llamas and snakes part, did we say snakes? Don’t be scared, the Incas built agricultural terraces and decorated with Llamas and snakes in stones. Then we head back down to lunch followed by our nap.

After a propper lunch and nap we continue up to the Pass of Choquequirao for couple hours. Then down to Pinchaunoyoc ruins where we set the camp, with incredible vistas to Vilcabamba mountain range.

  • Highest Elevation: 3,318 m / 10,883 ft
  • Lowest elevation: 2 487m / 8 159 ft
  • Distance to walk: 10 km / 6,2 miles
  • Approximate walking time: 8 hours
  • Level of Difficulty: Moderate
  • Meals: Brekfast, lunch and dinner

Day 4: Pinchaunuyoc – Rio Blanco – Maizal

Waking up to a cup of coffee to the vistas of this magnific mounttains, we will descend to the Rio Blanco for about 1.5 hours steep descent. Here you can luxuriate in the river and take a bath if you would like in the crystalline water from the glaciers.

Then we will start a difficult climb to a small cleared agricultural area on the mountain called Maizal. For many of our guetsts this is the most challenging section of the trek because the inclination but, don’t worry your super guide will be there for you to encourage you to make it. Today you will considere to make all the way to camp for lunch and spend the night here.

  • Lowest Elevation: 1,990 m/ 6,527 ft
  • Highest Elevation: 3 200 m / 10,500 ft
  • Distance to walk: 10km / 6.6 miles
  • Approximate walking time: 8-9 hours
  • Level of Difficulty: Challenging
  • Meals: Brekfast, lunch and dinner

Day 5: Maizal – Abra San Juan – Yanama

Nother beautiful day awaits for us, we climb about couple hours uphill through cloud forest to the Victoria Mines that was in use long and we will able to explore little bit and take a good rest here and admire the shine of the outcropped rocks illustrating the high concentration of minerals and metals, and the reason for the ancient mines. We will then continue our climb to the pass of Abra San Juan where we stop for lunch. This is also the best place to see Andean condors, also it offer us a great viw of Vilcabamba Valley that has the same names as the lost city of the Incas in the jungle.

After lunch as we descend to the charming village of Yanama for about 2 to 3 hour walk.

  • Highest Elevation: 4,130 metres/ 13,546 feet
  • Lowest elevation: 3 200 m / 10,500 ft
  • Distance to walk: 12 km
  • Approximate walking time: 8 to 9
  • Level of Difficulty: Challenging
  • Meals: Brekafast, lunch and dinner

Day 6: Yanama – Totora

Waking up at Peru by Locals style, with a nice cup of coffee or coca tea our hike begins in a 4 hour hike in gradual up hill to Yanama pass (4,672 m /15,324 ft), the highest point of our trek. We will see many waterfalls on the way up and meet local individuals. From the pass we will see Apu Salkantay that is the tallest mountain in Machu Picchu area. We will then descend for two hours and have lunch along the way followed a good nap. In the afternnon we hike for couple more hours downhill to Totora

  • Lowest Elevation: 3,398 m /11,445 ft
  • Highest Elevation: 4,672 m /15,324 ft
  • Distance to walk: 14 km / 9 miles
  • Approximate walking time: 8 to 10 hours
  • Level of Difficulty: Challenging
  • Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Day 7: Totora – Lucmabamba (coffee experince day)

We will begin the day by taking our private van from Totora to Colpapampa. We will hike 5 to 6 hours on gentle up and down segments through cloud forest following the river of Lluscamayo. We will have the chance to see multiple coffee plantations, banana plantations, and fields of passion fruit. Along this path you will also see the most beautiful waterfall along the trek.

We will reach Lucmabamba, our campsite for the evening, around noon. Here we will relax and enjoy a delicious lunch!

After lunch, we will do an incredible coffee tour at the plantation adjacent to the campsite. We will begin by browsing the fields, learning about the different types of beans, and picking our own beans.

After picking our beans, we will roast them and grind them. Finally, we will brew and drink our own coffee! It is a truly unique experience, it will be the fresshes coffee. This camp offers us showers for $ 3. If you interested we can ask to the owner of the camp.

  • Distance Covered: 14 km (8 miles)
  • Time: 5 to 6 hours
  • Lowest elevation: 2,050 m /6,725 ft
  • Highest elevation: 3,398 m /11,445 ft
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Meals: Breakfast, lunch, coffee, dinner

Day 8: Lucmabamba – Llactapata Inca Ruins – Hydroelectric – Aguas Calientes

There is nothing better than waking up with a coffee that you made. Today´s hike starts with a moderate 3 ½ hour climb through the rain forest until we reach the Llactapata Inca site (2,700 m/8,856 ft), following an old Inca trail that is still very well preserved. After reachibg the inca ruins of Llaqtapata we will have the chance to see Machu Picchu for the first time in the far distance.

Leaving Llactapata, we begin a 2 ½ hour descent to Hydroelectric, where we will have lunch. At 3 pm we will board the train for a 40 minute trip to Aguas Calientes, on arrival at Aguas Calientes you will check into your hotel. Dinner will be at Indio Feliz, the best restaurant in town, what a great place to celebrate our success of this incredible journey

  • Distance Covered: 12 km / 7.4 miles
  • Time: 6 to 7 hours
  • Lowest elevation: 1,800 m /5,905 feet
  • Highest elevation: 3,100 m /10,170 feet
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Meals: Brekfast and lunch woth our cooks and dinner at a restaurant
  • Accomodation: Hotel

Day 9: Aguas Calientes – Machu Picchu – Cusco

The day starts early, your hotel will provide either a buffet or boxed breakfast at 5am, so that we can take one of the first buses up to Machu Picchu. The 30 minute drive winds steadily upwards to the citadel, and we should arrive to see the most magnificent sunrise over the Andes before taking our place in the queue to enter the site.

We enter the site together and your guide will provide a fascinating tour for around 2-3 hours. The tour is guaranteed to bring the spirit and history of Machu Picchu to life, and your guide will pick a route that avoids the biggest tourist groups, and ensuring that all of the best photo opportunities are covered.

Following the tour, you can either climb Huayna Picchu mountain if you booked the permit in advance or take the bus back to Aguas Calientes to collect your luggage from your hotel. Taking the train back to Cusco at around 3pm, it is the perfect opportunity to relax and reflect on the experiences of the last 9 days. Finally, on arrival in Cusco, you will be met by one of our representatives who will transport you back to your hotel

  • Lowest elevation: 2,040 m/ 6,691 ft
  • Highest elevation: 2,440 m/ 8,052 ft

Inclusions & exclusions

Inclusions on the Choquequirao Trek to Machu Picchu

  • Bilingual English speaking tour guide, with university degree, trained in history, wild life and the most important they were trained in Wildereness Firts responder by NOLS (National Outdoor Leadership School)
  • Pre-Departure Briefing at your hotel 1 or 2 days before your trek.
  • Pick up from your hotel and transportation to trail head
  • Three-person tent for two persons
  • Inflatable Mattress and pillow
  • Kitchen tent
  • Dining tent with tables and chairs
  • Toilet tent.
  • An expert chef and assistant chef
  • Horse riders and horses to carry all the equipment (food, tents, chairs, table, etc)
  • Duffle bag for your personal gear to put on the horses
  • Horse to carry 10 kg of your personal gear
  • Emergency horse in case we need it
  • Nine breakfasts, Eight lunches and Eight dinners
  • Hot water for washing, everymoorning and before bed
  • Daily morning boiled and cold water to fill the water bottles.
  • Emergency oxygen bottle and medical kit carried by your guide
  • Expedition train ticket from Aguas Calientes to Poroy (Cusco train station)
  • Private van transport from Train station to your Cusco hotel on day 9th
  • Permits to Machu Picchu
  • Pemits to Choquequirao
  • Round trip bus from Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu
  • Coffee plantation tour in the afternoon of day 7
  • Lodging in Aguas Calientes on night 8 of the trek (double occupancy)
  • Dinner in Aguas Calientes on night 8
  • Train ticket from Hydroelectric to Aguas Calientes
  • SLEEPING BAGS (You don’t need to bring your own sleeping bags anymore, Peru by Locals provides free sleeping bags to be use. Our sleeping bags are washed after everyone)

Exclusions on the Choquequirao Trek to Machu Picchu

  • Day 9 lunch and dinner
  • Tips for the crew (muleteers, chef and guide)
  • Hiking poles (can be rented from us for $15 for whole trek per pair)

Prices

Price per person
$1430

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What to bring

What to bring on the Choquequirao Trek

  • Original passport – please remember to bring your original passport, which should be the current one; if you have acquired a new one after you made your booking, bring both (the one you used for booking your trip and the new one). The information you provided us in time of your booking have to match with your tickets in the Classic Inca trail.
  • Good hiking shoes – they should be breaked already; if you have acquired new ones, make sure to break them down before you come. They should be comfortable for your feet and possibly have ankle support.
  • Down warm fleece – jacket has to be warm enough for the nights and the jacket that is a wind breaker and/or waterresistant.
  • Few t-shirts – made for hiking; as you will sweat a lot, you may consider bringing at least 3 or 4 of them, one for the hike, one for the night and one clean for Machu Picchu
  • Socks – Cinsidere bringing at least 6 pairs
  • Sun hat – as some days can be hot and sunny, we recommend you to bring a sun hat that can keep the sun off your face.
  • Light long pants – trekking pants are the best ones, especially those that you can zip off the legs, plus they dry fast.
  • Clothes for sleeping – warm long underwear; you can use your fleece to sleep in and you may consider bringing gloves especially for the camp site
  • Head lamp – all the camps are dark so you will need to bring your head lights for organizing your stuff in your tent or going to the bathroom at night
  • Sunscreen – SPF 35+ recommended
  • Sunglasses
  • Trekking poles – they are very helful, they can take 30% of you weigh (if you don’t have them, you can rent them from us for $15 per pair for the whole trek)
  • Camera with spare batteries or just phones take greta pictures nowadays (batteries run down faster at high altitudes)
  • Bug repellent – there are mosquitos all year round so make sure you pack your bug spray
  • Book to read – you will have some spare time at every camp to read your favorite book or those that are about Machu Picchu that may make you journey more interesting (the following books are recommended by us: Last Days of the Incas by Kim MacQuarrie, Turn Right at Machu Picchu: Rediscovering the Lost City One Step at a Timeby by Mark Adams)

FOR MORE QUESTIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS GO TO F.A.Qs

Please, for for details visit us in F.A.Qs section where you will find all the recomendations and often asked questions.

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Things you should know before knowing our city.