05 Day Lares Trek & Short Inca Trail

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Easy

These activities are a walk in the park! You will be able to enjoy the scenery, history, and time with loved ones without exhausting yourself. You do not need any special training, gear, or acclimatization for an “Easy” trek or tour. Terrain will be generally flat and comfortable, highly traveled.

Mild

A step up from “Easy,” these tours require a little more physical effort but are still 100% manageable to anyone with or without adventure experience. Again, you do not need special training, gear, or acclimatization for a “Mild” trek or tour. Terrain is generally flat but with possible gentle up- and downhills.

Moderate

Before embarking on a “Moderate” trek or tour, you should be at least partly acclimatized to the high altitude of the Andes as it affects your oxygenation, energy levels, and hydration. These tours are still very manageable without special training as long as you have spent a day or two at high altitude. Terrain often includes moderate up- and downhill walking with possible rough patches or infrequently-traveled sections.

Challenging

“Challenging” treks or tours require that you are acclimated to the Andes’ high altitude before leaving as it affects your oxygenation, energy levels, and hydration. Spending 2-3 days or more at high altitude will help you on the trek. You will need hiking shoes and possibly trekking poles for these treks. You will need to be in good physical shape, and it’s recommended that you train at least some beforehand, possibly with running, biking, or strenuous workout videos. Terrain is often rough, sometimes with steep up- and downhills and often not highly traveled. Generally, these last several hours.

Formidable

These “Formidable” treks are our most difficult treks and require serious effort but are also the most rewarding. It is necessary to be in pristine physical condition. Again, you must be acclimated to the Andes’ high altitude before leaving as it affects your oxygenation, energy levels, and hydration. Spending 4-5 days or more if possible at high altitude will help you on the trek. You will need hiking shoes and possibly trekking poles for these treks. It is important to train physically before these treks so that your body is prepared for the strenuous nature of the trip. Generally, these last at least an entire day in infrequently-traveled areas with rough paths.

DAY 01: CUSCO – HUARAN – CANCHA CANCHA

Early in the morning, we’ll pick you up from the hotel and then drive for the next hour to the Pisac Inca ruins, where we explore this fantastic Inca City with your guide as he shares with you the history of the City and the Incas. After the guided tour, we enjoy breakfast in front of the Pisac ruins engrossed with the fantastic views of the Inca city & valleys below.

After breakfast, we take off on a 2-hour drive to the village of Huaran (2,840m/9,318ft) located in the famous Sacred Valley between Pisac and Urubamba. Huaran will be the starting point where we meet with the horsemen and pack up the horses. Leaving the Sacred Valley behind, we maneuver northward following a gently ascending trail along the small Cancha Cancha River. It takes approximately 6 hours to reach our destination, a small village named Pancha Cancha (3,800m/12,477ft) where we spend the night.

DAY 02: CANCHA CANCHA – QUISHUARANI

Leaving Cancha Cancha, we continue trekking up the valley, passing small thatched stone houses, vast mountainous ranges, and typical Peruvian layered landscapes. After 2 hours, the path plateaus out, and we arrive at the highest pass called Pachacutec Pass (4,758m/15,610 ft). Filled with joy and relief overreaching the summit, and captivated by the superb views of Pachacutec Lake and the snowy mountainous peaks of Pitusiray, we take a moment to enjoy the stunning sites before us and allow the sun’s rays replenish us. We then head downhill for the next 2 hours in time to enjoy a refreshing lunch. After lunch, we continue downward for another 1.5 hours into the valley’s several glacial lakes, herds of alpacas, llamas, and sheep. Tonight we camp at (3,870 m/12,694 ft) close to Quishuarani village, with its typical Inca stone and thatched homes.

DAY 03: QUISHUARANI – CUNCANI – LARES – OLLANTAYTAMBO

As we reach the mid-point of our trek, it is time to take on the second mountain pass, Hillkiccasa Pass(4,200 m/13,779 ft). As we trek, we marvel over the views of the plunging and peaked Peruvian Andes Mountains, as nature surrounds us in its purest form. The majestic Colquecruz and Pitusiray Mountains are awe-inspiring to watch from the pass. We continue our trek through the Puna grasslands, undulating and productive agricultural sites, and pristine natural lakes. After 5 hours of hiking, we reach Cuncani, a small Inca community. From Cuncani, we head down through a lush valley with extensive agricultural areas, fruit-bearing trees, varied flora, and native flowers like begonias and wild orchids. Finally, we reach our destination, the Lares Village (3,100m/10,170ft), where we cannot wait to soak in the natural volcanic hot springs for an hour, have lunch and take a siesta.

DAY 04: OLLANTAYTAMBO – KM 104  – MACHU PICCHU – AGUAS CALIENTES

Early, we take our train to KM 104 (2,100 m/6,927 ft), Cusco – Machu Picchu way. With anticipation, we begin our first leg of the Inca Trail, passing the first checkpoint. Here we repack to carry only the essentials in your backpack for the one day of trekking on the Inca Trail. Afterward, we initiate a moderate climb for three hours to the magnificent archaeological site of Wiñay Huayna. (2,650 m/8,747 ft). Once there, we notice as we take in the spectacular views of the Urubamba Canyon, the stunning Inca sites around us, and the connection to the traditional four days Inca Trail.  We continue onward towards the long-anticipated Sun Gate, (2,730 m/9,007 ft) where we finally get our first spectacular view of Machu Picchu in all its brilliance and its majestic monumentally. After a time to take many photos, we head for one-hour downhill, to the Citadel of Machu Picchu, take the bus to Aguas Calientes, and find our hotel where we spend the night.

DAY 5: AGUAS CALIENTES – MACHU PICHU – CUSCO

Early, we take our train to KM 104 (2,100 m/6,927 ft), Cusco-Machu Picchu way. With anticipation, we begin our first leg of the Inca Trail, passing the first checkpoint. Here we repack to carry only the essentials in your backpack for the one day of trekking on the Inca Trail. Afterward, we initiate a moderate climb for three hours to the magnificent archaeological site of Wiñay Huayna. (2,650 m/8,747ft). Once there, we notice as we take in the spectacular views of the Urubamba Canyon, the stunning Inca sites around us, and the connection to the traditional four-day Inca Trail.  We continue onward towards the long-anticipated Sun Gate, (2,730 m/9,007 ft) where we finally get our first spectacular view of Machu Picchu in all its brilliance and its majestic monumentally. After a time to take many photos, we head for one-hour downhill, to the Citadel of Machu Picchu, take the bus to Aguas Calientes, and find our hotel where we spend the night









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