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Published: December 31st 2019
Short Inca Trail to Machu Picchu 2 Days
We have the best option for you to know Machu Picchu with the best itinerary combined with the Short Inca Trail plus the Sacred Valley tour, where you will enjoy a little of everything without missing out on anything.
The Short Inca Trail
(aka “one-day itinerary”, “two-day hike”, “Sacred Trail” or “Camino Real de los Incas”) is ideal for hikers who do not have much time or would like do it. light hikes that don't cause tired legs or blisters! The trail starts at KM104 (highlighted in yellow on the map below) and follows a one-day route via Winay Wayna to Machu Picchu. Until 2019, the route could be completed without assistance, but it is now regulated. As with the classic trail, you will need to book with an approved trekking agency and set a date well in advance, as authorizations are made quickly. Acclimatization poses fewer problems on the Short Trail because the maximum altitude reached is 2,700 m, well below the altitude at which you would have acclimated to Cusco (3,400 m). The trail can also be hiked all year round. Unlike the Classic Trail
, it is not closed in February. You will find below the typical route of the short 2D / 1N trail. Note: this map is not to scale. Typical route of the Inca trail Day 1: KM104 - Winay Wayna - Machu Picchu - Aguas Calientes
The first day begins with a train
Classic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu 4 Days
Classic Inca Trail is an experience of a lifetime and to give yourself 5 days allows you to enjoy it to the fullest. This trek is also recommended for families with children. This is because it is more of a gradual trek, each daily walking distance is shorter in comparison to other trek and allows for better acclimatization to the high altitude of the Andes.
journey from Cusco to the Sacred Valley and to the starting point KM104 (so named: 104 km by train from the city of Cusco). The route is very picturesque and you can admire magnificent snow-capped peaks of the Urabamba mountain range. Once at KM104, you will cross a bridge over the Rio Vilcanota and head for the first stop, Chachabamba, an Inca ruin discovered in 1940 and probably used as an important religious site and a checkpoint monitoring the eastern part of Machu Picchu. After a brief visit to Chachabamba, you will continue on a path covered with cloud forests in the direction of Winay Wayna, point at which the short path joins the classic path.
Winay Wayna consists of an impressive Inca site which was probably used as the last ritual point of the pilgrimage on the trail. Near the site is a youth hostel with the same name and which is used as a camping spot for fans of the Classic Trail. There is a small shop at the hostel where you can buy snacks and supplies, before continuing on the outline that leads to Machu Picchu. After 2 hours of walking, you will arrive at a
Inca Quarry Trek to Machu Picchu 4 days
Challenging trek is designed for those who wish to see and experience different ecosystems with a wide variety of birds, flowers, and plants and for those wishing to experience the ancient culture in remote, small villages, hardly ever seen or visited by foreigners.
steep and pebbly Inca staircase which leads to Inti Punku (the door of the sun). Get ready for a breathtaking view of Machu Picchu. After a brief visit to Machu Picchu, you will be transported to Aguas Calientes (town located in the valley below Machu Picchu), where you will spend the night in a hotel. Day 2: Aguas Calientes - Machu Picchu - Cusco
The next day, you will wake up relatively early to take a bus to Machu Picchu for a full tour of the citadel lasting two to three hours.
Machu Picchu with Putukusi (aka Happy Mountain) seen in the background
Many hikers choose to climb Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu mountains that day, but this is only recommended for people who have energy and are not afraid of heights. Authorizations for both mountains are limited, so you must inform your travel company, when booking your trek, that you want to climb one or the other mountain. Click here to find out more about climbing Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu. After exploring Machu Picchu throughout the morning, you will return by bus (30 minutes) or by walking (about 2 hours) to reach Aguas Calientes to take your train to Ollantaytambo. From there, you will be brought back to Cusco by bus / car to arrive at your hotel around 19:00. Salkantay / Inca Trail (7D / 6N)
The 7D / 6N Salkantay / Inca Trail Combo is an awesome trekking for those looking for a real challenge. The trek starts just north of Mollepata and follows the same first day trail used during the classic Salkantay trek. However, after day 1, the trail turns east around the impressive Apu Salkantay (Apu means “sacred”) and leads over a difficult 4,900 m pass. From there, the trail continues north for 2 days, towards Wayllambamba, where you join hikers on the classic trail. The trek requires a permit and is therefore only offered by registered tour operators. The seats are limited. Best time to hike on the Inca Trail
In the subtropical Peruvian Andes, two seasons dominate: the dry season goes from the end of April to the beginning of October and the rainy season begins at the end of October and continues until April. The Inca trail is the busiest during the months of the dry season, especially from May to September. If you wish to hike at this time of year, it is advisable to book your trek at least 6 months in advance. The dry months of March / April and October / November can also be a good time for trekking, although the probability of rain is higher. Here is a diagram showing the average number of rainy days per month in the sanctuary of Machu Picchu. December, January and February are the wettest months, and the Classic Inca Trail and the Salkantay / Inca Trail Combo are actually closed for maintenance in February (it is possible to hike the Short Inca Trail or one of the other hiking routes to Machu Picchu in February). )
Temperatures in the region are relatively constant throughout the year, with days reaching 20 degrees Celsius and temperatures below freezing at night and early in the morning. Temperature fluctuations are also common when climbing high passes or dropping into valleys exposed to the sun. It is important to wear layered clothing to adjust comfort levels when temperatures fluctuate during the day and at different altitude levels (see packing list on the Inca path below). The micro-climates in the mountains mean that it is possible to experience rain at any time of the year. So also bring clothes for rainy weather.
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