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Lares Trek

4 days

Lares Trek

The 4-day Lares Trek is one of the most popular alternative treks chosen by travelers to Cusco.  This route passes through typical local communities, enabling travelers to witness how the people of the Andes have conserved their traditions. The scenery in this area is spectacular, with inter-Andean valleys overlooked by soaring snow covered mountains. The trek ends in the Patacancha valley, where local people continue the weaving traditions of their forebears. Below this valley is Ollantaytambo, from where we will travel by train to Machu Picchu.

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Day 1: Cusco / Calca / Lares Thermal Baths / Wacawasi

We will leave Cusco at 6.00 am for the drive to Calca, a town in the Sacred Valley of the Incas. This is an excellent time of day to enjoy the fine scenery visible on all sides of the road. On the way there will be time to visit the Inca granaries of Muyoq Orqo, after which we will continue along the valley road, passing Mount Sawasiray before beginning our ascent to Lares at the pass known in Quechua as Willka Punku (“Sacred Gateway”). We will have plenty of time to rest and enjoy the Lares thermal baths. After lunch we will begin our walk to the first campsite at the village of Wacawasi, where we will visit local weaving families and have our evening meal.
 

Meals: Lunch, Dinner

Driving distance:

  • Cusco to Calca: 31.6 miles (51 km) paved road
  • Calca to Lares: 26 miles (42 km) dirt road

Approximate bus journey time: 3 hours

Total trekking distance (thermal baths to Wacawasi): 3.9 miles / 6.3 km

Approximate Walking Time: 3 hours

Maximum Altitude: 10,775 ft / 3285 m


Day 2: Wacawasi / Ipsayqocha

We will continue our trek after breakfast, climbing steadily through the natural highland habitat of llamas and alpacas. This is a good area for bird watching, or for simply taking in the panoramic views of the surrounding peaks. We will arrive at our second campsite in the afternoon, at an isolated picturesque location far from all human settlements.

 

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Total Trekking Distance (Wacawasi – Ipsayqocha): 5.6 miles / 9 km

Approximate Walking Time: 5 hours

Maximum Altitude: 14,248 ft / 4347 m (Ipsayqocha)


Day 3: Ipsayqocha / Ollantaytambo / Aguas Calientes

Today we will reach the high pass at Ipsayqocha (14,271 ft / 4350 m), in a landscape populated by herds of llamas and alpacas. Once over the pass, a long descent takes the walker to the indigenous community of Patacancha, where our vehicle will be waiting to take us to Ollantaytambo, a village originally established by the Incas. We will have plenty of time to visit the archaeological site before our transfer to the train station for the ride to the village of Aguas Calientes, below the ruins of Machu Picchu, where we will spend the night at the hotel of your choice (hotel not included).
 

Note: The train to Aguas Calientes leaves Ollantaytambo in the evening (economy class), and you will spend the night in a local hotel before visiting Machu Picchu the next day.


Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Total Trekking Distance (Ipsayqocha – Patacancha): 4 miles / 6.5 km

Approximate Walking Time: 3 hours

Driving distance: Patacancha to Ollantaytambo 17 miles: (28 km) dirt road (1 hour)

Maximum Altitude: 14,248 ft / 4347 m (Ipsayqocha)

Driving distance: Ollantaytambo to Machu Picchu 34 miles (55 km) by train (2 hours)


Day 4: Full day at Machu Picchu

We will get up early today and take one of the first shuttle buses up to the ruins of Machu Picchu, a ride of approximately 25 minutes. After the guided tour of Machu Picchu, you will have plenty of free time to climb the mountain known as Huayna Picchu (subject to availability). Some sections of this route require ropes and only those travelers who do not suffer from vertigo should attempt it. It is a one-hour trip to the summit and is not recommended during rainfall.

 

Meals: Breakfast


Included

  • Private bus, outbound and return
  • Private bus: Patacancha - Ollantaytambo
  • English speaking tour guide
  • Trekking services, including: camp cook, porters and camp assistant(s)
  • Single supplement includes: single tent on trek
  • All group camping equipment, double tents and Thermarest mattresses, kitchen and/or dining tent, and toilet tent
  • Food: hot breakfast, lunch, and dinner as described in the itinerary (all the trash produced during the trek will be returned to Cusco)
  • First aid kit
  • Bus ticket to and from Machu Picchu
  • Entrance fee to Machu Picchu
  • Full day tour to Machu Picchu 

Not included

  • Lunch on the fourth day in Aguas Calientes
  • 01 night at a hotel (in Aguas Calientes)
  • Sleeping bag
  • Tips for guides
  • Tips for the staff
  • Drinks
  • Travel insurance. Please ensure that all members of the group have adequate insurance
  • Personal expenses, clothing and sleeping bag, laundry, telephone calls, etc.
  • Meals not included in the program

Things to bring on the trip

  • Passport (bring additional photocopies of your passport)
  • A small backpack for daily personal items (to be carried by the passenger)
  • Warm clothing suitable for the Andean region
  • Rain jacket
  • Long sleeved cotton shirts
  • Shorts for walking during the day (optional)
  • Cap and sunglasses
  • Sun block
  • Digital camera and batteries
  • Binoculars for bird watching enthusiasts
  • Good hiking boots
  • Walking poles (if you are used to walking with poles). Make sure they are not metal tipped
  • Swimwear and sandals (if you wish to visit the thermal baths in Aguas Calientes)
  • Flashlight and batteries

You should be fit and healthy for this part of your Peruvian adventure (Try to train at least two weeks before departure by walking every day).

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