This trip combines the best of the Lares Valley with visits to the fascinating Inca archeological remains of Ollantaytambo and Machu Picchu. Our first stop is the colonial town of Lares, where we bathe in the hot medicinal springs before beginning a four-day trek through the spectacular Urubamba Range. Each day is reasonably paced with ample time to enjoy the incredible scenery, lunch alongside cascading waterfalls, and appreciate the life of the Andean farmer. On the fourth day we reach the legendary Inca stronghold of Ollantaytambo, considered a living museum for its Inca stone dwellings and the people who continue to inhabit them. Next, we take the short train ride to the Machu Picchu Sanctuary, one of the world´s most beautiful and important archeological remains.
The trek is moderate, we can compare with the Inca Trail, we have two high passes of 4.000 masl or 13,200 ft., we recommend our guests to spend 2 or 3 days in Cusco( 3,300 masl or 10,890 ft.) before the tour.
Briefing the night before the departure.
DAY 01 : Cusco / Cuncani
Depart Cusco early morning in a private bus through the Sacred Valley to the picturesque town of Lares (3,100 masl. Or 10,230 Ft.). Here, we will spend time bathing in the hot thermal springs before having lunch. Accompanied by mules and llamas to carry our packs, we begin our hike up the verdant river valley and continue for about 3 hours until reaching the charming community of Cuncani (3600m.) Campsite.
DAY 02: Cuncani / Quishuarani
In the morning, we are greeted by a stunning view of the snow-capped peak, Colque Cruz (5,700masl. Or 18,810 Ft.) Continuing our trek, beautiful landscapes dotted by colorful ponchos worn by villagers herding their sheep and llamas unfold before us. Slowly hiking upward, we pass a succession of turquoise lakes and then continue to the first high pass at Uchuycasa (4,000 masl. Or 13,200 Ft.) From the pass, we enjoy astounding views of the valley below as our trail winds down to the village of Quishuarani (3,700 masl. Or 12,210 Ft. ), where we spend the night.
DAY 03 : Quishuarani / Cancha Cancha
Today, we begin with a short walk to an impressive lake into which empties the beautiful, cascading waterfall of Pausi. Our trail leads up to the right, passing many small waterfalls and following an original Inca stone path. As we reach the Pachacuti pass (4500m.), we have spectacular views of the snow-covered peaks of Pitusiray (5,750masl. Or 18,975 ft) and Chicon (5,500 masl. Or 18315 Ft.). Down below, we can also see the striking Suirococha Lake located next to the village of Cancha Cancha (3,800 masl. Or 12.540 Ft.), our last campsite.
DAY 04: Cancha Cancha / Ollantaytambo
This is our least difficult hiking day as we continue downward from the village of Cancha Cancha, passing thatched-roof stone houses and pastoral farmland. As we head into the warm valley, we follow mountain streams through a wide corridor filled with bird life and rocky formations. The trail comes out at Sayhuapata (2,800 masl. Or 9,240 Ft.), from where our private vehicle will take us to the legendary Inca town of Ollantaytambo. In the afternoon, we have plenty of time to visit this incredible archeological site. Then we can relax, enjoy a savory meal, and sleep comfortably in a hotel.
DAY 05: Ollantaytambo / Machu Picchu-Cusco
We take the early morning train to Aguas Calientes (tourist class). In Aguas Calientes, we ride the tourist bus up to the famous archeological complex of Machu Picchu, arriving around 11:30 am. An official, English-speaking guide will lead a tour of approximately 2 hours, followed by time to explore the remains on our own. Departing the ruins in the afternoon, we take the bus down to Aguas Calientes to catch the train back to Cusco
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