Day 1: Cusco – Tauca – Huchuy Qosqo – Ollantaytambo – Aguas Calientes
At 6am, we will start driving from your hotel to the small Village of Tauca (3,750m/12,303ft), the beginning of your trek. We will be on level terrain and the landscape will be that of typical Andean Valleys, rich in corn, potatoes, barley, quinoa and other Andean tubers. As you ascend towards the pass at (4,050m/13,287ft), the landscape begins to change dramatically to the classic of High Andean Savannah or Puna, with scant vegetation, mainly “ichu” or high altitude grass. The views of the Cordillera Vilcabamba peaks are spectacular; Veronica, Pitusiray, Chicon and San Juan snow peaks. Soon after the pass, you will start your descent toward the Huchuy Qosqo plains hiking along a path that leads to the Cauca Ravine, where you will be able to see archeological remains and wild crops, such as tarwi, and a large quantity of cactus.
You will walk downhill towards the Leon Punku ravine, where you will find remains of an Inca bridge and trail. This canyon boasts geological formations surrounded by majestic rocks and boulders that direct the river to Huchuy Qosqo at (3,650m/11,975ft). Huchuy Qosqo (Little Cuzco) is a noteworthy Inca complex. It boasts very fine stonework in a large Kallanka (rectangular Hall), some residential and defensive quarters and interesting two-story buildings in stone and adobe. Huchuy Qosqo is located on a plateau, surrounded by Inca agricultural terraces and allows superb views of the Vilcabamba range. Afterwards, we will go downhill to Lamay at (2,900m/9,514ft) where we will catch our transport to drive to Ollantaytambo, the place where we will continue by train to Aguas Calientes. Then, overnight in a hotel.
- Meals: Lunch & Dinner
- Hiking time: 7 hours
- Distance: 16kms/10 miles
- Accommodations: Wiracocha Inn Hotel or Andean Terra Hotel
Day 2: Aguas Calientes – Machu Picchu – Cusco
This is the day you’ve been waiting for! We leave our hotel after a very early breakfast to take the bus for the journey up to Machu Picchu ruins. Once inside the citadel, there is a private 2 hour tour provided with plenty of free time for further exploring, taking photos and the option to climb Huayna Picchu, Machu Picchu Mountain or go up to the Sun Gate. Then, we return back to Aguas Calientes, take a leisurely lunch. We take the Expedition train which departs at 14:55pm to Ollantaytambo with a private van connection to Cusco arriving at your hotel in the evening at about 7pm.
- Meal: Breakfast
- Entrance tickets: Machu Picchu
WHAT IS INCLUDED
- Private transportation from and to your hotel
- All meals as indicated in the itinerary
- Professional bilingual guide (Spanish and English)
- Entrance fee to Huchuy Qosqo
- Entrance fee to Machu Picchu
- 2 Bus tickets from Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu and return to Aguas Calientes
- Hotel in Aguas Calientes: Wirachocha Inn o Andean Terra Hotel
WHAT IS NOT INCLUDED
- Entrance to Huayna Picchu –$75 USD
- Entrance to Machu Picchu Mountain –$75 USD
- Walking Poles -$7 USD
- First breakfast and last lunch.
- Upgrade to Vista Dome Train -$57 USD (Return Only)
- Optional upgrade – Hotel
- Tips for the crew, guide, cook and porters of SAM TRAVEL PERU
This Trek can be done any day that is best for you as long as we have a minimum of 2 trekkers!
PRICE -$397 USD per person
- 18 to 25 years old:$30 USD. Information required on student card: name of university, student name, photo of student, expiration date etc. A copy of the card at booking is required & government approval for discount.
- Under 18 years old:$30 USD. Please send us a copy of your passport at the time of booking.
- Under 11 years old:$40 USD. Please send us a copy of your passport at the time of booking.
- Optional Hotel up-grade
- Upgrade to Vistadome train:$57 USD per person (Return Only)
- Entrance to Huayna Picchu –$75 USD
- Entrance to Machu Picchu Mountain –$75 USD
- Walking Poles – $7 USD
- Bus ticket from Machu Picchu to Aguas Calientes – $12 USD
- Single Supplement -$30 USD 2* for single travelers
ADDED VALUES FOR FREE
- OXYGEN TANK will be available along the trek
- SMALL GROUP up to 8 people, usually around 2 to 6 hikers
- ENGLISH SPEAKING guide
- EARLY TRAIN for the way back to Cusco at 4:22pm
WHY CHOOSE SAM TRAVEL
SAM Travel Peru is a family owned travel agency and a local tour operator based in Cusco with personal experience over many years of trekking. SAM Travel Peru is a 1oo% Cusquenian Company without any shareholders.
Our dream as a locally based company is to create small personalized tours & treks strictly and only operated by local professional staff catering in PERSONALIZED and HIGH QUALITY SERVICE.
We take pride in having a reputation as being a RESPONSIBLE & SUSTAINABLE tour operator. Our staff are our extended family. We ensure they are supported financially by offering them a fair salary. We are proud of our team without them , we wouldn’t be able to offer the best service and lifetime experiences to our clients.
SAM Travel Peru knows how important it is to trust in a reliable honest operator to create your adventure of a lifetime while in Peru. Check out our reviews and certificates of excellence on, TRIPADVISOR for yourself! Also we are highly recommended on Conde Nast Travelers, Lonely Planet and by many blogs like: Salkantay/Inka Trail ! July 14th to 20th 2016 Trek de Lares 4 hours, “It’s the journey, not the destination…”, Lares Pass – Day 3, Trekking in the Sacred Valley, Alli and Ellie hike to Machu Picchu
In an effort to provide a more personalized service to our passengers, we, at SAM Travel Peru have a policy that our groups will not exceed 8 people. This sets us apart from other companies that operate departures with bigger groups.
OUR TOUR GUIDES
We are so proud of our guides! They are highly professional and speak fluent English. They are very knowledgeable and passionate for Incan heritage and history. Our guides are dedicated to continuous personal and professional development. They do research to ensure that you receive accurate and recognized theories in Incan and Andean culture. Our crew is fun loving, great sportsmen and well-educated. They all hold degrees in one of the following: Archaeology, Tourism, Botany, History or Anthropology.
Trekking the Salkantay Trail with SAM Travel Peru is a life changing experience with a fully portered trek, where your comfort and enjoyment are our first priority. We make sure that you get the best experience for your holiday in Peru, while you interact with the locals, explore fantastic sites and re-discover remote ancient Inca towns. Our porters will carry your gear, prepare your meals, set up your tents by avoiding crowded campsites and take care of you while you sit back and relax.
We provide the following items to our porters for free: Jacket, sun hat, warm hat, t-shirt, pants, hiking boots, comfortable duffel bags, canteen and girdle for protecting their spine, sleeping bags, mattresses and travel insurance. All of our porters are hired from isolated communities and are given the opportunity to work with our company, in regards, to better their economic circumstances as well as getting help for their childrens’ education! We, SAM Travel Peru , ensure that all of our porters are treated like family!
OUR COOKS ON THE LARES TREK
The food on the trek has been highlighted by all our clients as delicious and abundant gourmet style meals. Peruvian and International Cuisine are prepared by our professional and dedicated cooks from a mixture of local and exotic produce. If you have any diet restrictions or have food allergies of any kind, we can cater to your needs.
Our team (Guides, Cooks, Porters, Cowboys) and our equipment are what really makes SAM Travel Peru stand out from all the competitors…. For all our adventures we hike we include the following items:
- OUR TENTS: Enjoy a good nights sleep in our 4 season EUREKA Timberline tents. All our tents are 4 man tents, but ONLY sleep 2, leaving lots of room to spread out comfortably and store your duffel bags. They also include a little vestibule in front, giving you some extra outdoor space to leave your boots and walking sticks so you don’t have to bring in dirt.
- OUR MATTS: They are used to separate and insulate you from the ground. They all are big and thick.
- AIR MATTRESSES: They can be rented for $15 USD.
OUR KITCHEN & DINING TENTS: The dining tent is used as our meeting room at meal time. It´s a place to enjoy our meals and the company of fellow trekkers.
- OUR TABLES & CHAIRS: The interior of the dining room includes tables and chairs with two doors on each side, which are adaptable to weather conditions.
- DUFFEL BAGS: Will be provided at briefing time the night before the trek.
- MORE: Pillows, backpack, rain covers , survivor t-shirts , hot shower and the biochemical camping toilet , are provided on trek.
OUR SOCIAL PROJECTS
SAM Travel Peru has always believed that we should “give back” to the communities,we passby through when on our treks. Therefore, as part of our commitment to responsible tourism, we always do many social projects and hire locally.
SAM Travel Peru is so proud to be able to support these beautiful people, not only employing them but also to keep things at grassroots, to share with their families. This makes us happy to have this holistic approach with our highland employees and their families!
Please read carefully the following information; it will help with your questions about our services and the Lares trek –
ARRIVAL TO CUSCO
You will be greeted at the Cusco airport and taken to your hotel. Please ensure that you inform us of your flight details at least 14 days prior to trek´s start. Look out for our representative holding an orange board of SAM Travel Peru at the arrival terminal.
The briefing will take place the night before the trek at 6pm at our office, which is located at Calle Santa Teresa Nº383 ; 303 (second floor) we are next to SUBWAY restaurant.
CAN I STORE MY LUGGAGE AT YOUR OFFICE
Of course! During the Lares trek,your main luggage can be stored at our office or at your hotel, both are for free.
HOW TO BOOK THE HUCHUY QOSQO TREK MACHU PICCHU
Please be ready with the following information (FROM EACH PARTICIPANT in your group). We cannot purchase an Huchuy Qosqo Trek to Machu Picchu entrances and train without the following information:
- Personal information (your full name, exactly as on your passport):
- Passport number
- D.OB. (dd / mm / yyyy)
*** We require copies of your passport at the time of booking.
SECOND, we require a deposit of $211.00 USD per person in order to purchase a permit for the Lares trek to Machu Picchu. You can make you deposit by clicking on the VISA or PAYPAL symbols on the top of our home page, or you can click on the VISA or PAYPAL symbols on our booking page.
WHAT ABOUT THE BALANCE?
It would be greatly appreciated if you pay in cash at our office (we accept US dollars or Peruvian soles). We have many ATMs within the historical center. You can also pay by VISA or PAYPAL online but you will have to pay a 5.5% service charge, charged by VISA and PAYPAL. To pay your balance through PAYPAL, you need to log into your PAYPAL account using our email address of firstname.lastname@example.org.
HOW DO I QUALIFY FOR THE STUDENT DISCOUNT?
- According to Peruvian Law, you must be under 18 years of age at the time of your trek, tour, or visit to Machu Picchu (students 18 & above need student cards). For example: if you book a trek at the age of 17 but you turn 18 before you do your trek, you do not qualify for a student discount.
- All students from 11 to 17 years, the discount is $30 USD.
- For children from the age of 2 to 11 the discount is $40 USD.
- For children from the age of 0 to 2 are free.
- All students must provide a copy of their passport at the time of their booking to get the student discount.
- Send us a copy at email@example.com
MAY I CHANGE THE DATE AFTER THE TICKETS HAVE BEEN BOUGHT?
Unfortunately the answer is No. Once the tickets have been bought the Peruvian government does not allow any changes so we can’t change any departure dates. Tickets are not transferable nor refundable. With alternative treks we may be able to change dates for a fee depending on what has been already purchased. Please contact the office as soon as possible if you need to change your date. If you cancel your Huchy Qosqo Trek Machu Picchu, the deposit is not refundable at all!
DO I NEED MY ORIGINAL PASSPORT ON HUCHUY QOSQO TREK?
Yes! You have to bring your original passport and it is very important that it is the same passport copy you sent to us to book your Huchuy Qosqo Trek, other entrances and reservations. In case you are renewing your passport or changing your name, go ahead and send us your old passport information to secure your permit, and we can change it when you get your new passport number or updated your name for a fee of $25 USD per person. We must have a copy of your old and new passport to make the change. Before you change your passport keep a copy of your old one.
If you do not wish to pay this fee you will need to bring both passports to Peru with you. You can enter Peru with your new passport but you will need to show both passports, old and new to be to enter the Inca Trail, Machu Picchu or the train. If you do not have both you will not be allowed to enter the Inca Trail, Machu Picchu or get on the train.
WHAT IS THE WEATHER LIKE ON THE HUCHUY QOSQO TREK?
The weather is very unpredictable and it’s difficult to foresee. We recommend to always dress in layers as it is more easier to adjust to the different climates.
WHAT ABOUT ALTITUDE SICKNESS?
In general, if you excerise regularly and spend a couple of days in Cusco or the Sacred Valley, you will be able to acclimate normally. It usually take between 24 hours to 2 days.
The recommended remedies for altitude sickness is WATER, COCA TEA and OXYGEN IF NEEDED; our guides are trained to treat you for Altitude Sickness. For more detailed information on Altitude Sickness click this link: Altitude Sickness.
HOW MANY PEOPLE ARE THERE PER GROUP?
The maximum group size is 8 persons. Our groups are between 2-6 persons. Sam Travel Peru specializes in SMALL, PRIVATE groups and provide a personalized service.
HOW MANY COOKS/PORTERS FOR THE GROUP?
You will have 1 cook per group. The number of porters depends of the size of the group. For a group of 2 trekkers, they will have 4 porters, 4 trekkers will have 6 porters, 6 trekkers will have 9 porters, 8 trekkers will have 12 porters.
HIKING HUCHUY QOSQO TREK
The evening before you start your trek, you will be given a SMALL DUFFEL BAG to pack your clothes for the next four days. Your weight allowance is up to 7kg/14lbs. Your team of porters will carry your duffel bag for you, together with the food and camping gear. It’s important to be aware, that you will not have access to your items in the duffel bag until the end of each day, as the porters will always be ahead of the group. During the trek, you need a day backpack big enough to carry your personal belongings such as a warm jacket, a rain jacket, your camera, sunscreen, snacks, water, etc. A 30 to 50L backpack is sufficient.
IS THE TREK DIFFICULT, DO I NEED TO BE FIT?
The Hucuy Qosqo Trek Machu Picchu is a 16 kms/10 hike through the Andes in the Cusco region. The maximum altitude reached is (4,200m/13,779ft). The Trail is easy to moderate difficulty trek. You have to be moderately fit and take regular exercise.
In preparation: try walking 15kms a day or go to the fitness club in the months leading up to the trek. It is also important to be well acclimatized to the altitude. Try to spend at least 2 or 3 days in Cusco (3,350m/11,047ft) prior to starting the trek.
WHAT HAPPENS IF I AM UNABLE TO FINISH THE HUCHUY QOSQO TREK?
In the scenario that you are unable to finish the trek due to a health issue, Sam Travel Peru will assist you to the nearest town for help with transportation. We always carry oxygen on the trek for any respiratory problems In extreme cases, a helicopter pick up can be arranged at your own expense. (Travel insurance required). There are no refunds in the unlikely situation that you are unable to finish the trek.
Generally, those who have to be assisted off the trail are taken to Ollantaytambo and if they recover quickly, they then continue the journey to Aguas Calientes (cost incurred by trekker) and visit Machu Picchu according to original plan.
ARE WE GOING TO BE DROPPED OFF AT OUR HOTEL AFTER THE TREK?
Absolutely!! Included in the package and on the last day we will drop you at your hotel! If you have booked your hotel in the Sacred Valley like Ollantaytambo or Urubamba, we will drop you there too! If you spend the night at Ollantaytambo before the trek, for sure we wil pick you up there !
AT WHAT TIME IS THE TRAIN DEPARTURE?
It will depend on the train availability (high season it could book out) but the idea is to give you as much time as possible in Machu Picchu and enjoy the amazing views on the way back to Cusco from the train. Therefore you we usually book the train at 4:22pm. With this train schedule, you will have more than 9 hours to enjoy Machu Picchu
HOW MUCH IS THE VISTADOME UPGRADE?
The upgrade to Vistadome train which has slightly nicer seats, panoramic windows and ceiling. You will be offered some snacks and a dance show will take place on board. The price is $57 USD per person which includes the transfer from Poroy train station to your hotel in Cusco. It is 2 hours by train from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo and then another 2 hours from Ollantaytambo to Cusco by bus. If you upgrade to Vistadome, all the way back to Poroy, the trip lasts 3.5 hours, then 25mins by taxi to your hotel. Our clients are back at the hotel by 8pm.
If you’re happy with the services provided, a tip – though not compulsory – is appreciated. While it may not be customary to you, it’s of great significance for the people who will take care of you during the trek. It inspires them to give excellent service and is an entrenched feature of the tourism industry across many SAM Travel Peru destinations. Of course, you are free to tip more or less as you feel it, depending on your perception of the quality and the length of your trip. Remember, a tip is not compulsory and should only be given when you receive excellent service.
ARE WE SUSTAINABLE?
Yes, we are a local, sustainable & responsible tourism operator for that we incorporate the universal principles of tourism: protect the environment and benefit the local communities by respecting their culture and religion. With this in mind, we have trained all our local staff to know and understand, respect the places and the local people.
WHAT YOU SHOULD BRING
- A lightweight, waterproof day pack with change of clothes (about a 30 liter size)
- Sturdy hiking boots
- Warm clothes and trekking pants (trousers)
- Layers of clothes, include thermals, for variable temperatures especially at night
- Head lamp with spare batteries
- Camera with extra film and batteries
- Sun protection: sunscreen, sunhat, sunglasses
- Woollen socks, gloves, scarf, woollen hat for cold nights
- Insect repellent
- Extra plastic bags, especially in the wet season
- Waterproof clothing or a rain poncho
- Water bottles
- Personal medical kit with a simple whistle
- Extra money for souvenirs, drinks, tips
- Walking poles (rentable)
- Favorite snacks
- Toilet paper
- Sandals or flip-flop
- Swimming suit (optional for hotsprings)
- Original passport and university card if is applicable