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THE  BEST MULTI-DAY TRIPS FROM CUSCO

THE BEST MULTI-DAY TRIPS FROM CUSCO

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EXPLORE THE BEST MULTI DAY TRIPS FROM CUSCO

Get to know the best trips from Cusco together with the best local guides. Cusco offers you the best hiking excursions of several days, having as final destination the wonder of the world Machu Picchu. Many of these tours are organized in walking groups, but there are also ones for families and small groups with personalized services, according to the travelers’ requirements. We can classify these hiking activities into four large groups: Treks to Machu Picchu, Out-of-the-ordinary Treks, Cultural Treks, and Landscaping and Photography Treks.

Apart from the innumerable archaeological attractions that exist in the Cusco region, this city in the Andes is also very famous for its beautiful mountain and Amazon jungle landscapes. Currently you can spend more than a week touring any of these tourist circuits that we are going to mention in this blog. Perhaps the most outstanding thing for every visitor who comes to Peru is to explore the world destinations of Machu Picchu, the Amazon jungle and the mythical rainbow mountain of Vinicunca.

But there are new scenic and cultural attractions that are being promoted, with the construction of new roads, which makes it easier to reach these tourist destinations, which in the past were visited only practicing scientific expeditions, with the help of donkeys and muleteers.

Cusco offers you that type of unforgettable experience where you will be filled with great happiness appreciating great sunsets, and its very friendly people always willing to help you. In the most distant communities, only the ancestral language is spoken, we are referring to Quechua, but they also speak Spanish. Always keep in mind that for any hiking activity in the Andes, preferably use the services of recommended travel agencies and highly experienced mountain guides, so you will be guaranteeing your safety and comfort to explore the magnificent landscapes of Peru.

SHORT CIRCUITS TO KNOW CUSCO IN A FEW DAYS

MACHU PICCHU AND SACRED VALLEY OF THE INCAS 2 DAYS

Cusco, also known as the ancient Inca capital, is a highly sought-after destination in South America. Filled with historic colonial architecture, museums, and cafes, there are plenty of things to do in Cusco. This option is highly recommended for hikers who do not have much time on their vacation in South America, but have planned to visit the wonder of the world Machu Picchu; For this you must arrive in Cusco on an air flight one day before; Currently there are flights that leave from Lima, the earliest flight leaves at 4:00 am, and the last one leaves at 8:00 pm. When you arrive in the historic capital of Peru, when you are not used to the altitude, sometimes it happens that you may feel some effects of altitude sickness. For this you should drink plenty of water and take some medications if necessary.

The next day you will start with the Sacred Valley tour, where you will explore the archaeological attractions of Chinchero, Moray, Ollantaytambo, and the landscapes of the Urubamba Valley; In the afternoon, a train is boarded to the town of Aguas Calientes, during the trip you can enjoy the most beautiful landscapes of the Andes and the jungle. On the third day you will visit the Inca citadel of Machu Picchu, together with your guide you will learn all the history and the most important sectors of the Inca temples. In the afternoon the train will return you to Cusco, where you will arrive at 7:00 pm. Therefore, it is not advisable to buy an air flight for this day, it will be better to spend one more night in a hotel and the next day travel to your next destination. In conclusion, for this circuit between the days of the visit and the connections of your flights, a minimum of 4 days of your calendar is required in your vacations in South America.

MACHU PICCHU AND SACRED VALLEY OF THE INCAS 2 DAYS

THE BEST OF CUSCO IN 3 DAYS: CUSCO-SACRED VALLEY-MACHU PICCHU AND VINICUNCA

Once you arrive in Cusco you have too many attractions to explore, before that we recommend you visit the circuit of the Sacred Valley of the Incas and Machu Picchu, for the third day we plan to go to the Vinicunca rainbow mountain. Although the altitude may require many days of adaptation, while you visit the towns of the Sacred Valley of the Incas, you will be able to adapt much better to the effects of altitude sickness.

In this adventure you will be able to take photos of the most famous tourist destinations, such as the salt mines of Maras, circular terraces of Moray, learn about the textile techniques of the town of Chinchero. It is definitely not good at all to think about visiting Cusco at the last minute and have the idea of organizing everything upon arrival, even more so if you plan to visit in the months of April to October, which is considered the high season, that means that there are many visitors who are arriving to the city of Cusco; Consequently, the tickets for Machu Picchu are usually sold out 3 to 4 months in advance. For this reason, you should organize your visits to Cusco preferably taking the services of an authorized travel agency.

THE BEST OF CUSCO IN 3 DAYS: CUSCO-SACRED VALLEY-MACHU PICCHU AND VINICUNCA

THE BEST OF CUSCO IN 4 DAYS: SACRED VALLEY, MACHU PICCHU, RAINBOW MOUNTAIN, HUMANTAY LAKE

This program is the perfect plan that combines the best cultural and natural tourist attractions of the city of Cusco. It is recommended for people traveling with friends and children. You will visit the magical Sacred Valley of the Incas, to enjoy its pleasant climate and the Inca ruins where you can learn about the culture and history of the Incas. And in the afternoon, board the train to Machu Picchu to visit the sacred citadel of the Incas. On the third day you will travel to the Vinicunca rainbow mountain, this day you will already be very acclimatized to the altitude, so you will not feel tired, the walk is approximately 1 hour. For this tour you should wear warm clothes; Finally, you will visit the Humantay lagoon, where you will have time to enjoy the glacial landscape and the turquoise waters.

THE BEST OF CUSCO IN 4 DAYS: SACRED VALLEY, MACHU PICCHU, RAINBOW MOUNTAIN, HUMANTAY LAKE

TOP CUSCO TREKS TO MACHU PICCHU

When travelers think of trekking in Cusco, the most popular route that comes to mind is the mystical trek to Machu Picchu. The most popular trekking route to Machu Picchu is the Classic Inca Trail. Those who plan to do the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu must have a guide and a permit. However, there are other treks in Cusco that lead to the Lost City of Machu Picchu that do not require any.

There are endless amazing multi-day hikes in Cusco, zigzagging through the mountains, but the most famous is the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. While the Inca Trail is spectacular, there is a wide range of treks in Cusco that are often overlooked. Many of these treks include unforgettable trips to extraordinary and sacred Inca sites, cultural treks through small towns that honor traditional ways.

With tons of hiking trails to choose from in the Cusco region, it’s important to be safe and prepared when planning a hike in Cusco. Spend at least a few days exploring the magic of the Imperial City of Cuzco, which will help you acclimatize to the altitude. If you plan to add some of these Cusco hikes to your Peru bucket list, it’s best to spend at least a month or two in Cusco, Peru.

CLASSIC INCA TRAIL TO MACHU PICCHU

It is by far the best walks to Machu Picchu, for the archaeological attractions, which are in the entire circuit. You will see a great variety of temples, water channels, sacred mountains, Inca houses and squares, agricultural terraces, and roads that after 600 years are still used by hikers to the great Inca city of Machu Picchu. A super special detail that you will also love is the great service provided by the true descendants of the Incas, we are referring to the strong porters who carry the backpacks and food that they prepare throughout the Inca trail to Machu Picchu. In fact, the Inca gastronomy is one of the best in the world, and you will surely try some of the most famous dishes on your Inca trail excursion, because many of the cooks with whom this trek is made have been working for more than 20 years. Regarding the cost, it is really worth spending a little more, compared to other treks, because there are none like the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, 1000% recommended.

Quick Stats for Classic Inca Trail

Difficulty: Moderately Challenging

Point to Point Trail: KM 82 to Inti Punku Machu Picchu

Distance: 26 miles (43 Km)

Duration: 4 Days / 3 Nights

Permit Required: Yes, only 500 per day are issued

Guide Required: Yes

CLASSIC INCA TRAIL TO MACHU PICCHU

SHORT INCA TRAIL TO MACHU PICCHU

If the 4-day trek to Machu Picchu sleeping in tents seems uncomfortable, but you want to know the Sun Gate, and part of the original Inca trail to Machu Picchu, you can choose the alternative of doing the trekking route cut to Machu Picchu. This option is highly recommended for people who visit Cusco with children from 8 years old and up, and with adults up to 70 years old. Since the path is more adaptable and less hard compared to other treks to Machu Picchu.

During the tour you will visit the Inca temples of Chachabamba, Choquesuysuy, Wiñaywayna and the sacred rock of Pachamama. You can also appreciate the beautiful landscape of the cloud forest, surrounded by the snow-capped mountains of Veronica and Pumasillo. Highly recommended for adventurers who do not want to go to machu picchu only in a short train ride.

Quick Stats for Short Inca Trail

Difficulty: Moderate

Point to Point Trail: KM 104 to Inti Punku Machu Picchu

Distance: 9 miles (14.5 Km)

Duration: 2 Days / 1 Night

Permit Required: Yes, only 250 per day are issued

Guide Required: Yes

SALKANTAY TREK TO MACHU PICCHU

The Salkantay Trek is one of the most popular Cusco treks to reach Machu Picchu since a guide or permit is not required. The Salkantay Trail standard route takes an average of 5 days and the highlights include the stunning Humantay Lake, climbing the Salkantay Pass, and a quick jaunt through Peru’s coffee region.

The only Inca ruins along this trekking route is Llaqtapata, which leads to one of the most incredible places to sleep: the Llaqtapata Lodge. The lodge has camping spots, private rooms, hot showers, delicious food, and some truly epic views of Machu Picchu. Hikers then proceed downhill on the Salkantay trail to the Central Hidroelectrica. From here, walk next to the railroads tracks and the Vilcanota River to reach Aguas Calientes, or by train.

Quick Stats for Salkantay Trek

Difficulty: Moderate – Difficult

Point to Point Trail: Mollepata Village to Aguas Calientes

Distance: 46 miles (74 Km)

Average Duration: 4 – 5 days

Permit Required: Yes, since the tickets for Machu Picchu tend to sell out very quickly

Guide Required: Yes, this mountain route is not recommended to go alone

SALKANTAY TREK TO MACHU PICCHU

LARES TREK TO MACHU PICCHU

The Lares Trek is a fantastic cultural experience and one of the top Cusco treks for an alternative to the popular Inca Trail. There are countless different hiking routes to choose from when trekking in the Lares Valley. The Lares Trek is also known as the “Weaver’s Way,” due to the fact that it passes many traditional Andean weaving villages known for their incredible and very time-consuming handicrafts.

Many locals still don their traditional clothing and alpacas can be seen wandering the mountains with ribbons tied in their ears. The standard Lares trekking route typically begins from Lares village. The standard Lares Trek is 3 days. Most Lares Trek tours include a transfer to Ollantaytambo. From here, hikers hop on a train or shuttle to the pueblo of Machu Picchu.

Quick Stats for Lares Trek

Difficulty: Moderate – Difficult

Point to Point Trail: There are many Lares trek trail options from the Sacred Valley. Most Lares trek tours begin in Lares and end with a transfer to Machu Picchu.

Average Distance: 21 miles (34 Km)

Average Duration: 3 days / 2 nights

Permit Required: Yes, since the tickets for Machu Picchu tend to sell out very quickly

Guide Required: Even though the Lares Trek can be done independently. As this is one of the most intrepid treks in Cusco, a guide is highly recommended.

HUCHUY QOSQO TREK TO MACHU PICCHU

The Huchuy Qosqo Trek has multiple trekking routes, but one of the most dramatic ways to hike to Huchuy Qosqo is a 3-day trek from Cusco. The trail begins near the Inca site of Tambomachay. The trail meanders through the isolated Andes and leads to Coricocha  Lake. Set up camp at the lake and appreciate a tranquil night under the stars.

The next morning head towards the small community of Puca Marca. After Puca Marca, the trail narrows and goes through a fantastic canyon with ladders, wooden bridges, and an old Inca doorway. Appreciate stellar views of Inca terraces and the Sacred Valley. Finally, reach the main entrance gate to Huchuy Qosqo.

After exploring the site, take the steep trail down to the village of Lamay, from where you take the transport to the Ollantaytambo train station, and in the afternoon you will arrive at the town of Aguas Calientes. The third day we visit the sacred citadel of Machu Picchu, after a beautiful adventure the tour ends in the city of Cusco at night.

Quick Stats for Huchuy Qosqo Trek

Difficulty: Moderate – Difficult

Point to Point Trail: There are many Huchuy Qosqo Trek trail options. Most Huchuy Qosqo Trek tours begin in Cusco and end with a transfer to Machu Picchu.

Distance: 20 miles (32.2 Km)

Average Duration: 3 days / 2 nights

Permit Required: Yes, since the tickets for Machu Picchu tend to sell out very quickly

Guide Required: Even though the Huchuy Qosqo Trek can be done independently. As this is one of the most intrepid treks in Cusco, a guide is highly recommended.

HUCHUY QOSQO TREK TO MACHU PICCHU

BEST CUSCO TREKS TO STUNNING INCA RUINS

CHOQUEQUIRAO TREK

The Choquequirao Archaeological Park is one of the best Incas sites in Peru, Choquequirao, lies hidden in the mountains and is only accessible via hiking. The Choquequirao trek drastically changes in elevation through the mountains, crosses over rivers, and passes by tiny communities. The Choquequirao trek is worth the effort and even during peak season, the site averages less than 20 visitors a day.

The Choquequirao Archaeological Park is huge and there are multiple sections of the site to explore. In theory, you could spend two days exploring all the treasures of Choquequirao and not even skim the surface. The Choquequirao Trek can only be done with a tent, cooking gear, and proper equipment. This trek requires at least two night of wild camping.

Quick Stats for Choquequirao Trek

Difficulty: Moderately Difficult

Out & Back Trail: Starts & ends in Cachora Village with the official trailhead at Capuliyoc

Distance: 36 miles round-trip (58 Km)

Duration: 4 – 5 days

Permit Required: Yes, the Choquequirao entrance ticket is 60 Soles ($18 USD)

Guide Required: Yes, for your own safety, it is recommended that you take the services of an experienced guide in the area.

CHOQUEQUIRAO TREK

INCA QUARRY TRAIL TO MACHU PICCHU

This walk is very little known, it begins in the Soqma sector, a town dedicated to the cultivation of corn. From this sector, a tour of the original Inca trail is made that will take you to the Inca ruins of Perolniyoq, which is located on the waterfall of the same name. There you can enjoy a spectacular night, since you can see all the constellations of the southern hemisphere, and also the Milky Way. On the second day, the ascent to the highest point is made, from where you can see the majestic Sacred Valley of the Incas, and the imposing Nevado de la Veronica.

In the afternoon you will walk to the famous and unique Puerta del Sol, there you will have the opportunity to take the best photos with the sunset. On the third day, you visit the Inca quarries from where the lithic blocks were taken, with which the Inca city of Ollantaytambo was built. At noon you will take the train to the town of Aguas Calientes, where you will sleep in a comfortable hotel. The fourth day is the visit to Machu Picchu with the guide you can visit the most important places, returning to Cusco at night.

Quick Stats for Inca Quarry Trail

Difficulty: Moderately Difficult

Out & Back Trail: Starts in Soqma Village and ends in Cusco

Distance: 12 miles (20 Km)

Duration: 4 days

Permit Required: Yes, since the tickets for Machu Picchu tend to sell out very quickly

Guide Required: Yes, for your own safety, it is recommended that you take the services of an experienced guide in the area.

INCA QUARRY TRAIL TO MACHU PICCHU

AUSANGATE TREK

The Ausangate Trek is one of the most incredible treks near Cusco. This high-altitude trek circles around Apu Ausangate, one of the most sacred mountains in the Cusco region, and the altitude of the trail never dips below 14,000 feet. The most common Ausangate trek route is a 3 day circuit, which includes a day trip to Rainbow Mountain.

Highlights of the Ausangate trek include the chance to walk in the remote Andes mountains among hundreds of alpacas and llamas. If you’re lucky, spot wild vicuñas roaming across the alpine landscape. There are a plethora of viscachas, a high alpine rodent, bouncing jovially along the path. Appreciate the diverse glacial peaked mountains and alpine lakes.

Natural highlights of the Ausangate trek include basic hot springs with incredible mountain views, otherworldly landscapes, colorful alpine lakes, and a chance to visit Rainbow Mountain without the crowds.

Quick Stats for Ausangate Trek

Difficulty: Difficult and Challenging due to the extreme elevation and remoteness

Point to Point Trail: Tinki or Upis and  finishes in Pacchanta

Distance: 45 miles with Rainbow Mountain add-on (72.5 km)

Duration: 3 to 7 days, depending on the route

Permit Required: No, but the Ausangate Trek entrance ticket is 30 Soles ($ 10 USD) locals may ask for varied camping fees per person along the route

Guide Required: Yes, for your own safety, it is recommended that you take the services of an experienced guide in the area.

AUSANGATE TREK

MANU NATIONAL PARK (AMAZON RAINFOREST TOURS)

The Manu National Park is the closest Amazon jungle from the city of Cusco, to get to this beautiful place you arrive by bus from Cusco, after driving 4 hours, you visit the first ecosystem, we refer to the cloud forest where you can observe the different species of birds, several of them are endemic to this part of Peru. At noon you have lunch in the middle of nature, continuing on the bus you will reach the San Pedro sector where you can see the cock of the rocks, and on the plain you can see various species of monkeys. The hostels are very welcoming and provide all accommodation services.

From this point you will already feel the typical climate of the Amazon jungle, with hot temperatures during the day, it will also depend on the type of excursion you want to do, because there are various programs from those who only go in search of butterflies, local cultures, or also the disdain to see the jaguar. The best thing to do is to do a 3-day tour, because you will be able to see many species of flora and fauna of the Amazon forest.

Quick Stats for Manu Jungle Tours

Difficulty: Easy, since there is very little walking

Point to Point Trail: begins and ends in Cusco

Duration: 3 to 7 days, depending on the program you choose

Permit Required: No

Guide Required: Yes, for your own safety, it is recommended that you take the services of an experienced guide in the area.

MANU NATIONAL PARK (AMAZON RAINFOREST TOURS)

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