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cusco active inca trail

Cusco Active & Inca Trail 9 Days

ACTIVITY LEVEL: Moderate to strenuous

Trip at a Glance
This active trip combines rafting in the Urubamba River, horseback riding in the Sacred Valley Surroundings and hiking the 4 Day Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. A great adventure for sports loving people. Note. For those who cannot get spaces on the Inca Trail there options such as: Lares trek/Salcantay trek or another short hikes

Day 1: Arrive Cusco
Day 2: Rafting
Day 3: Horseback Riding Maras & Moray
Day 4: Sacred Valley of the Incas
Days 5 - 7: Start the classic Inca Trail (Camping). Note: permits are required, book in advance.
Day 8: Arrive at Machu Picchu
Day 9: Transfer to the Airport. (End of the service)

Itinerary: Walking and journey times are approximate

DAY 1: Cusco
Upon arrival to Cusco Airport, our staff will be waiting for you to drive you to the Hotel where you will receive an aromatic coca tea then you have the free morning to rest for a while.  Later in the afternoon we’ll take you on a guided visit to see Cusco’s highlights, including nearby ruins of Sacsayhuaman, Q’enko, followed by a visit to the Main Square and famous ‘Koricancha’ or Temple of the Sun and of course the local market. (B)

  • Overnight in Cusco - Hotel

Day 2: River Rafting at Chuquicahuana – Urubamba River
One of our most popular white water rafting adventure tours is the "Cusipata" section of the river on the Upper Urubamba. There are good class IIl rapids and the water is very pure. We pick you up at your hotel, after one and a half hours drive we arrive to the put -in at the shores of the Upper Urubamba River. Our professional white water rafting guides will give you a safety talk and provide you with all the proper equipment for white water rafting. We will be floating for approximately two to two and a half hours, running numerous class II and III type rapids. Afterwards, we arrive to the take-out. Then a hot lunch will be provided as well as a sauna and hot showers. Our return to Cusco should be around 4:30-5:00pm in the afternoon. This is a full day adventure tour! (B, L)

  • Overnight in Cusco - Hotel

Day 3: Horseback Riding Cusco (Moray & Salt Mines of Maras)
We Pick you up at 8:00 am from your hotel in Cusco. Transfer to ranch, located in the sacred valley (Maras). At ranch we will meet our horses and complete explanation about the premises and an introduction of our national horse, riding courses and equitation lead by an experience instructor. After lunch we depart toward the picturesque village of Maras. Then to the salt platforms of Salineras (Inca times), still being used by the locals to extract salt from the mountain spring water. Where the salty water is channeled through an impressive irrigation system and left to evaporate in the sun.Continue 2 hours climbing riding the horses (1000m) to reach the high Andean. Over at 3750m the stunning scenery and the snow-capped mountains of Chicon, Veronica and Salkantay is impressive. Cooling of the products was achieved by using a genius system of underground air-circulation. Ride to Lake Huaypo, there will have box lunch with spectacular scenery of snow-capped mountains, wildflowers and beautiful mountain lakes. Ride to Moray terraces, this area was served as an experimental agricultural station for the development of different crop strains, using the climates of different ecological zones. There are no great ruins in Moray to impress visitors. Moray is more for the contemplative traveler with an affinity for such phenomena as the Nasca Lines. From Moray we come back down to the Valley floor, after riding we come back to the ranch. At 4 pm transfer back to Cusco. (B, L)

  • Overnight in Cusco - Hotel

Day 4: Sacred Valley 
One of the most spectacular days of the tour takes us through the Sacred Valley of the Incas; once an important source of food for the Inca, the Sacred Valley is a lush agricultural region that continues to supply the city of Cusco with much of its produce. As it is 600m lower than Cusco, temperatures are on average 5 degrees Cº higher in the Sacred Valley.
Our travels will bring us through the major archaeological sites of Pisac and Ollantaytambo. At Pisac, an optional two hour or 5km hike will allow us to fully appreciate the Incan city nestled high in the Andean range. Later, the colorful artesian market at Pisac will no doubt be a highlight for those in search of unique souvenirs.
The day trip finishes in the picturesque village of Ollantaytambo, location of another large Inca site. This major ruin is known as the best surviving example of Inca urban planning and engineering. But more than that, Ollantaytambo is a living breathing Inca City. Here we catch our breath and prepare for our train voyage to Machu Picchu. (B)

  • Overnight in Sacred Valley or Cusco  - Hotel

DAY 5: Start the Inca Trail: Cusco - Wayllabamba
After breakfast we transfer you from your hotel in Cusco or the Sacred Valley to Piscaycucho (first check point and the start of the trail). Here you start hiking through the Urubamba river valley, After two hours, you will reach the first archaeological site called Patallacta, where we will appreciate the impressive landscapes and see the importance of this valley in the context of Incan history, later we will stop at Tarachayoq for lunch and then continue up the Cusichaca Valley passing houses of settlers to finally reach the Andean community of Huayllabamba, our first campsite. (L, D)

  • (6 miles hiking, 4 - 5 hours) – Camping

DAY 6: Wayllabamba - Pacaymayu
After breakfast, today we will start hiking early in the morning, here the trail ascends steeply to a large Pampa below the first pass, Llulluchapampa (the last chance to buy snacks or energy drinks) Here we have a breathtaking view of valley down and the Mt.  Huayanay, along the trail up this narrow hanging valley we begin to see a cloud forest with abundant vegetation of various types of trees including the Queuña tree (polilepis), a rare forest to be found in the Andes. From here we continue a steady ascent on an Inca Trail up to the Warmiwañusqa pass (Dead Woman’s Pass) at 4,200m (13,692ft) which affords a magnificent view of our ascent and the trail ahead of us.  Here we will take a well-deserved break and observe the beauty of the deep valleys. After the break we descend on a restored Inca Trail down to the Pacaymayo River, our 2nd campsite. (B, L, D)

  • ( 8 miles hiking, 6 – 8 hours ) – Camping

DAY 7: Pacaymayu – Wiñaywayna
Today we ascend again to the second pass, about halfway up lies an  Inca ruins of Runkuraqay (small, round, roofless stone building and thought to have been an astrological site and a sort of checkpoint for couriers following the trail to Machupicchu), after a short tour, we will continue to ascend to the second pass at 4,050m (13,200ft). From here we walk down on the original Inca Trail, passing a small lake and the first signs of the cloud forest then we reach the second larger Inca site called Sayacmarca “Town in a Steep Place” at 3,850m (12,551ft) This Incan ruin was built on a rock overlooking the trail and is accessible only via a single narrow stone staircase. A beautiful location overlooking the Aobamba Valley, it affords a respite for a leisurely walk through its imposing structures.  After touring we continue along the ridge through amazing landscapes, viewing Mt. Salkantay from the western side and Mt. Pumasillo, a silhouette to the north on the horizon. We will stop at this valley to enjoy lunch. After lunch we continue walking through a rolling flag stoned trail and a tunnel; then we arrive to next Incan site called Phuyupatamarca “the village on the edge of the clouds” We will learn about the ritual functions that the Incas used this site for. Here we will see water fountains that Incas bathed in before they reached Machupicchu. From here the flag stoned trail winds sharply down into the cloud forest to the ruins of Wiñay Wayna “Forever Young” located below the ridge on the same water course as the previous site; it has also well restored Inca Ruins. Our campsite is here. (B, L, D)

  •  ( 11 miles hiking, 9 – 10 hours ) – Camping

DAY 8: Wiñaywayna - Cusco
On the last day of the trek, we will wake up early and follow a relatively flat path. After about an hour walk through a cloud forest covered Inca Trail we arrive to Intipunku “the sun gate” we have a well-deserved break watching the magnificent citadel of Machu Picchu at our feet, our final destination. From here we continue hiking for one more hour to finally arrive to Machu Picchu in the same way the Incas used to come. Once you get there you will have a guided tour after that you are free to explore city on your own, take pictures, or take any of the extra hikes
Later in the mid-afternoon you take the bus down to Aguas Calientes town to take the train back to Ollantaytambo then transfer to your hotel. (B)

  • (4 miles hiking, 2 hours). Overnight in Cusco – Hotel

Day 9: Cusco - Departure Day
Transfer to the airport for your flight to Lima or to continue with an extension program. We can arrange a later flight date out of Cusco or additional post tour accommodation in Cusco or Lima upon client request. (B) 

End our services
Add on the Amazon Rainforest, Titicaca Lake, Colca Canyon, and other extension tours or treks. Let us know.

What’s Included

  • Airport arrival and departure transfers
  • All accommodations as per itinerary
  • All land transport along the route (bus, van or train)
  • Guide service throughout as per itinerary
  • All entrance fees for included excursions (Inca Trail, Machupicchu, etc.)
  • All the camping equipment (two man tents, camp gear; dining and kitchen tents; kitchen crew)
  • Meals as indicated in the itinerary (B: Breakfast /BL: Boxed Lunch / L: Lunch / D: Dinner)
  • Chef and porters on the Inca Trail
  • First aid kit.

What’s Not Included

  • Domestic and International Flights
  • Visa and passport fees
  • Insurance
  • Meals (see above)
  • Alcohol, Drinks
  • Sleeping bags
  • Optional activities/day-tours/excursions
  • Tips
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