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Cusco To Machu Picchu


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Classic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu

Duration: 4 Days / 3 Nights

Places to Visit on the Inca Trail 4 Days

  • Ollantaytambo
  • Llactapata
  • Runkuracay
  • Sayacmarca
  • Phuyupatamarca
  • Wiñay huayna
  • Sun Gate
  • Machu Picchu
  • Aguas Calientes
Group Size Up to 8 people
Max Altitude: 4200 m.s.n.m
Type Service: Group
Transportation: Van, Train, Bus
Difficulty: Challenging
Duration: 4 Days / 3 Nights

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Map Inca trail 4 days

INCA TRAIL TO MACHU PICCHU ONE OF THE WORLD’S TEN BEST HIKE

The 4 day Inca Trail is famous for being one of the world’s best hikes, discover the pathways of the Inca and be astonished by the wealth of archeological treasures and natural beauty along the way, hike many passes with unbelieveable Andean views.  The Machu Picchu national park has many archeological sites, ecological zones, many species of bird and flowers as well as the famous Machu Picchu citadel. Pass through the Sungate before taking an informative tour through the ruins.

Detailed Itinerary – Inca Trail 4 Days

Day 1: CUSCO – KM 82 HATUNCHACA – WAYLLABAMBA AYAPATA

Today begins your adventure of a lifetime with the Classic Inca Trail!  Your guide will pick you up from your Cusco hotel in our van at 4:30am.  Then we travel to Piskacucho, which is known as Kilometer 82, where the Classic Inca Trail begins.  Along the way, we stop for a wonderful breakfast in Ollantaytambo at about 6:30-7:00am to perpare for our first big day.

Arriving at KM82 (8:30am), we will finish organizing ourselves, use the restrooms, apply sunscreen and insect repellent. Here you meet the porter and give them your duffel bag, keeping only a small daypack with the essentials you need during the hike. Check our packing list for more information. Once at the Inca Trail checkpoint, be ready to show your passports and your student ID card, (if you booked as a student) your guide will have all of your permits and tickets.

At the start of the trail (2,720m/8,923ft) you will cross the Vilcanota River and follow its scenic route. The first day is relatively easy, a warm-up along the rolling “Inca flat terrain.”  There you will enjoy great views of the Inca Fortress of Huillca Raccay, the vast and incredible Inca site of Llactapata, (also called Patallacta), the Urubamba mountain range that divides the jungle, the Andes Mountains and the beautiful snow-capped peak of Veronica (5,860m/19,225ft), also known as W’akay Willca. You stop for your first gourmet lunch at Hatunchaca, after you only have about three hours of walking to camp.

Our first campsite is about 2 hours past the small village of Wayllabamba (3,000m/9,842ft) located in the temperate green valley of the same name. Temperatures at night can be as low as 5ºC, depending on the season. It is generally colder in the dry season from May to September.

When you arrive at camp, your afternoon tea and appetizers will be waiting. Settle into your tent, which will already be set up for you.

  • Meals included: Breakfast, lunch, snacks, afternoon tea and dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping facilities
  • Distance: 12kms/7.5mls (about 6 hours hiking)
  • Difficulty: Easy/Moderate
map of the first day of the inca trail to machu picchu

Day 2: WAYLLABAMBA – DEAD WOMAN’S PASS – PACAYMAYU – CH’AQUI QQOCHA

Your guide will wake you up with a hot mug of tea or coffee at 5:30am, feel a bit spoilt as you enjoy this hot drink in your sleeping bag before getting up for a delicious and hearty breakfast. With your daypacks as light as possible, you start a steep ascent towards the highest pass, Abra de Warmihuañusca, also known as Dead Woman’s Pass at (4,200m/13,779ft).  On your way up towards the pass, you will see an array of hummingbirds and a variety of other species of birds. There will be plenty of time to appreciate the incredible variety of native plants and the Polylepis, or Q’ueuña trees, which grow in the astonishing cloud forest located at (3,650m/11,972ft)! On this day, you will feel a real sense of achievement reaching the top! After a well-deserved break for photos, you begin the descent towards your lunch spot, which is located at Pacaymayu (3,550m/11,646ft).

After a gourmet lunch, you begin the second two-hour steep climb towards Runkuraqay pass (4,000m/13,123ft). You arrive at your campsite by 5 pm, where your afternoon tea and appetizers are waiting for you. Temperatures at this campsite are around 4ºC during the night.

  • Meals included: Breakfast, lunch, snacks, afternoon tea and dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping facilities
  • Distance: 16kms/10mls (about 9 hours hiking)
  • Difficulty: Moderate/challenging
Map of the second day Inca trail.

Day 3: CH’AQUI QQOCHA – PHUYUPATAMARCA  – WIÑAY WAYNA

This is the most impressive day so far, so keep this in mind as you ascend on day three! The guide will wake you up at 6am with a hot mug of tea or coffee in your tent before you get up for breakfast. Start the day with a gentle climb towards the archaeological site of Phuyupatamarca, which means “Village in the Clouds”.  Here, reach the third highest point along the Inca trail (3,680m/12,073ft). The views of the mountains, canyons and surrounding areas are without a doubt spectacular!

The extensive Inca site of Phuyupatamarca, is located a few minutes’ walk from the third pass.  After visiting this site, continue walking down 3,000 stairs through the cloud forest to the impressive Inca site of Intipata. Descend from the mountains, feel the temperature rise. From here you are approaching not only Machu Picchu, but also the beginning of the Amazon jungle! After taking some time to visit Intipata, continue to the third campsite Wiñay Wayna (2,680m/8,792ft). Today, only walk about 4 to 5 hours, arrive at camp by lunchtime.  Temperatures during the night are about 12º C.

A short walk from your campsite is the famous Inca site of Wiñay Wayna which means “Forever Young” in Quechua. It is named after a special orchid which grows abundantly in the area.

  • Meals included: Breakfast, lunch, snacks, afternoon tea and dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping facilities
  • Distance: 10kms/6.2mls (about 5 hours hiking)
  • Difficulty: Moderate
Map of the Inca trail of the third day.

Day 4: WIÑAY WAYNA – MACHU PICCHU – CUSCO

Wake up time is at 3:30 AM. We’ll eat breakfast at 4:00 AM and wait at the checkpoint to be one of the first to start trekking when they open the gates at 5:30 AM. This is the final part of the journey, arrive by 6:00am to the Sun Gate, also known as Inti Punku. At that point, the majestic Machu Picchu Citadel will be spread out in front with its mystic beauty – an incredible sight for all to see. At the Sun Gate, watch sunlight spreading down over the citadel like melting gold, as the sun rises from behind. Finally, walk downhill towards Machu Picchu Citadel (2,400m/7,872 ft.)

After walking about 40 minutes, enter the Citadel of Machu Picchu from the top through the “House of the Guardians”where everybody takes the famous postcard pictures of Machu Picchu.  From there, proceed towards the control point, where we register and leave any large backpacks or walking poles. You are only allowed to take small bags into Machu Picchu, such as camera bags. Walking poles are not allowed because they can damage the stones.

The guide will give a full guide tour and educate you about the history of the ruins which takes about two hours. See most of the important parts of Machu Picchu and learn about how Machu Picchu is divided into three sectors: agricultural, residential and religious.

After the tour, enjoy sometime exploring the ruins and taking photos. For those who have booked in advance for the extra hike up Huayna Picchu, check your ticket for the entrance time, the hike up will be on your own. When you have had your fill of the exceptional views of Machu Picchu, you will take the bus back down to Aguas Calientes for lunch (not included). Depending on your train departure time, you may also have time for some shopping, sightseeing or a visit to the museum or hot springs.

The Expedition Train at 2:55 or 3:20pm will take you back to Ollantaytambo, following the spectacular Urubamba River. Close to Aguas Calientes, the canyon is narrow and the river has many beautiful sections of whitewater. See Wiñay Wayna from the train if you look up high on the steep canyon wall! Back at Ollantaytambo, the driver will meet you at the exit from the train station and drive back to the hotel in Cusco in our private vehicle. Expect to arrive at your hotel by 7:00pm.

Meals included: Breakfast
Distance: 6kms/3.7mls
Difficulty: Easy

*** The Huayna Picchu Mountain Hike depends on availability and let us know about it at booking time.

***IMPORTANT:

  •  On the 4 day Inca Trail, we will be doing the Circuit #3 or #4 and there is no way to do another circuit unless you buy an additional entrance to Machu Picchu (US$57) – These regulations are for all the companies!
  • Upgrade to the Vistadome Train for the same times, 2:55 or 3:20, 4:22, or 4:43pm. The cost is $67 USD.
  • Early trains can be organized by request and it has to be done at booking time.
Map of the Inca trail to machu picchu of the fourth day.

WHAT IS INCLUDED FOR THE CLASSIC INCA TRAIL TO MACHU PICCHU?

  • Briefing at our office. This will be done the night before the trek at 6:00pm
  • Hotel pick up the first morning of the trek
  • Private transportation from Cusco to Piscacucho (in our company van)
  • Extra porter for your belongings (you will need only a day backpack to carry what is needed during day)!
  • 4 season Eureka Timberline Tents, (large & comfortable) please see equipment
  • Comfortable foam mattresses and pillow
  • Professional English speaking guide who is highly experienced in trekking
  • Meals as indicated in the itinerary (optional: vegetarian or other dietary needs upon request)
  • First-aid kit, including emergency oxygen tank
  • Porters to carry tents, food and cooking equipment
  • Boiled water to fill water bottles or Camelback (the chef will provide clean water after each meal)
  • Hot water for washing purposes
  • Expedition Tourist Train from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo and private transportation to Cusco (in our company van)
  • Permit to the Classic Inca Trail &  entrance ticket to the Machu Picchu Archaeological Complex
  • Private toilet tent, with a normal toilet seat – this is only for our group
  • Two hour guided tour in Machu Picchu
  • Bus ticket from Machu Picchu down to Aguas Calientes
  • Dining and cooking tents with tables and chairs
  • Chef and cooking equipment

WHAT IS NOT INCLUDED FOR THE CLASSIC INCA TRAIL TO MACHU PICCHU?

  • Huayna Picchu Mountain: $75 USD – This needs to be booked in advance and please let us know at the time of booking (it books out very quickly). 
  • Last lunch at Aguas Calientes.
  • VISTADOME Train – $67 USD per person extra. (Return only)
  • Tips for the crew, guide, cook and porters of SAM TRAVEL PERU

EXTRAS

  • Sleeping Bag –$20 USD per person per trek (It will be clean and warm)
  • Air Mattress – $20 USD per person per trek (Therm-a-rest mattresses)
  • Walking Poles –$15 USD per pair per trek (These are professional poles that can be extended)
  • Personal tent- $30 USD – (Please request when you book your trek)
  • Additional night in Aguas Calientes – from $60 USD per person (depending on availability)
  • Vistadome Train Upgrade  – $67 USD per person (Return only)
  • Huayna Picchu Mountain  – $75 USD per person (Please request when you book your Trek)

**Huayna Picchu Mountain is optional treks within Machu Picchu Citadel which do not include a guide. The climb is usually done on your own after the tour of Machu Picchu Citadel. If you would like the extra hike to be guided, please request in advance. There is an extra cost for this extra guided tour.

PRICE AND AVAILABILITY FOR CLASSIC INCA TRAIL TO MACHU PICCHU

The Classic Inca Trail  to Machu Picchu Trek is available on any date that is best suited to you  as long as we have a minimum of 2 hikers

GROUP SERVICE – $757 USD per person  

  • Personal Porter is included in the price!
  • Discount of $30 USD per person for groups of 5 or more persons

PRIVATE SERVICE: 

  • $997 USD per person – 2 to 3 persons  
  • $897 USD per person – 4 to 6 persons 
  • $777 USD per person – 7 to 8 persons

DISCOUNTS

  • 18 to 25 years old:$30 USD. Information required from the student card: name of university, student name, photo of student, expiration date, etc. A copy of the card is required at booking to obtain government approval for the 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.

EXTRAS

  • Sleeping Bag –$20 USD per person per trek (It will be clean and !warm)
  • Air Mattress –$20 USD per person per trek (Therm-a-rest mattresses)
  • Walking Poles –$15 USD per pair per trek (Professional poles that can be extended)
  • Personal tent- $30 USD- (For solo travelers only)
  • Additional Night in Aguas Calientes – From $55 USD per person (depending on availability)
  • Vistadome Train Upgrade  – $67 USD per person (For the return to Cusco at 4:43pm)
  • Huayna Picchu Mountain  – $75 USD per person (Please request when you book your Trek)

**Huayna Picchu Mountain is optional treks within Machu Picchu Citadel which do not include a guide. The climb is usually done on your own after your tour of Machu Picchu Citadel. If you would like the extra hike to be guided, please request in advance. There is an extra cost for this extra guided tour.

CHECK YOUR TREK AVAILABILITY BY CLICKING ON THE DROPBOX AND CHOOSING YOUR MONTH & YEAR

               

ADDED VALUE WITH SAM TRAVEL PERU

  • EXTRA PORTER: You will receive a small duffel bag at the time of your briefing to pack your clothes and sleeping bag for 3-4 days.
  • BOILED WATER – for drinking included along the Inca Trail
  • SMALL GROUPS  – average group 4 to 6 with a maximum of 8 hikers
  • FLUENT ENGLISH SPEAKING GUIDE
  • DUFFEL BAG – for your belongings

IF THE CLASSIC INCA TRAIL TO MACHU PICCHU IS SOLD OUT

FOR YOUR DESIRED DATES?

If permits are sold out for the Classic Inca Trail  to Machu Picchu on your preferred date, there are many other options that will still allow you to trek and enjoy the Andes on the way to MACHU PICCHU! Alternative treks are just as beautiful as the Inca Trail. They are less crowded because we take you OFF the beaten track in the Andes and we make sure you don’t miss anything along the trek to MACHU PICCHU.

*Sam Travel Peru requires only a 2 participant minimum for our departures! Choose any day that is best for you as long as we have a minimum of 2 trekkers.

*If you are a solo traveller and are flexible with the start date, we will make sure that there is a group to travel with so you won’t miss out on any of the fun.

ALTERNATIVE TREK OPTIONS: 

NOTE: We can buy your  Classic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu trek permit(s) using copies of the passport(s) provided to us (they must to complete and accurate). If the name or number on your passport does not match the name and number on the trek permit, the Peruvian government authorities will not allow you to start the trek and you will not be entitled to a refund.  Bring the same passport with you to Cusco and take it on the Inca Trail, in order to gain access at the checkpoint.

PASSPORT CHANGES 

If you plan to renew or change your name on your passport between making your trek booking and starting your trek, you can book your trek or tour with your current passport number and name. We cannot change your name on your Inca Trail Ticket due to government regulations.  You must bring your old passport or minimum a copy of the old passport.  We can change a passport number if you have renewed your passport.  To make the change we must have a copy of the old passport and new passport with the new number. We can then make the change with the government before you arrive.  The extra cost to do the change is $25 USD per person. (This will cover the change in number for your Inca Trail Permit, Machu Picchu Entrance, and train.)

If you do not advise us of the change or do not want to pay the fee, you must bring both passports (the old and new one).  You can enter Peru with your new passport but you must show the government authorities your old passport, in order to enter the Inca Trial, Machu Picchu or train.  If  you cannot do so, you will not be allowed to start your trek by the government officials. 

Check the expiration date on your passport! You must have at least 6 months before your passport expires. If you do not have at least six months from the day you enter Peru, most airlines will not let you board the plane.

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 100% Cusqueñian 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 our reputation as 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 so 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, TRIPADVISORfor yourself! Also we are highly recommended on Conde Nast Travelers,  Lonely Planet 

SMALL GROUPS

To ensure a more personalized service for our guests, at SAM Travel Peru we have a policy that our groups will not exceed 8 people. This fact alone 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 Inca 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 Inca and Andean culture. Our crew is fun lovinggreat sports and well-educated. They all hold degrees in one of the following: Archeology, Tourism, Botany, History or Anthropology.

OUR SUPER COOL PORTERS

Trekking 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 children’s education!  We ensure that all of our porters are treated like family!

OUR EQUIPMENT

Our team (guides, cooks, porters, horsemen) and our equipment also makes SAM Travel Peru stand out from all of our competitors! For all our adventurous hikes, we include the following items:

  • OUR TENTS: Enjoy a good night’s sleep in our 4 season EUREKA Timberline tents. All our tents are 4 person tents,  ONLY 2 persons will sleep in each, leaving lots of room to spread out comfortably and store your duffel bags. They also include a little vestibule, giving you some extra outdoor space to leave your boots and walking sticks so you don’t have to bring in dirt.
  • OUR FOAM MATS: They are included to separate and insulate you from the ground.
  • AIR MATTRESSES can be rented for $20 USD.
  • OUR KITCHEN & DINING TENTS: The dining tent is used as our meeting room at meal times. This is a great time to sit back relax and catch up for a chat.
  • OUR TABLES & CHAIRS: The interior of the dining room includes tables and chairs with two doors on each side,  adapting to the day’s weather.
  • DUFFEL BAGS:  Will be provided at briefing time the night before the trek.
  • MORE: Pillows, backpack rain covers, survivor t-shirts, bio chemical toilet are all provided on the trek.

OUR SERVICE PROJECTS

At SAM Travel Peru we have always believed that we should give back to the local isolated communities. 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 our local people. We not only employing them but we also go back to our grassroots as they share with their families. It makes us happy to have this holistic approach with our highland employees and their families!

Please read carefully the following information as it will help you answer all of your questions about our services and the Classic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu.

THE BRIEFING

The briefing will take place the night before the trek at 6pm in our office, which is located at Calle Garcilaso 210, office 213 (second floor) in the La CASA DEL ABUELO shopping center.

CAN I STORE MY LUGGAGE AT YOUR OFFICE?

Of course! During the Classic Inca trail to Machu Picchu, your main luggage can be store at our office or at your hotel, whichever is more convenient for you. Please pack only what you will need for the trek!

HOW TO BOOK THE CLASSIC INCA TRAIL?

FIRST, to book your Classic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu , we need you to fill out our booking form by clicking on BOOK NOW on our homepage or click here the link BOOK NOW.

Please be ready with the following information (FROM EACH PARTICIPANT in your group).  We cannot purchase an Inca Trail permit without the following information:

  • Personal information (your full name, exactly as on your passport):
  • Gender
  • Passport number
  • D.O.B. (dd / mm / yyyy)
  • Nationality

*** We require copies of every participant’s passport, in order, to book Inca Trail permits! 

SECOND, we require a deposit of $211.00 USD per person, in order, to purchase a permit for the Classic Inca Trail.  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?

If you would like to avoid the high credit card fees in Peru, you may pay in cash at our office (US dollars or Peruvian soles) here in Cusco. There are many ATMS within the historical center to withdraw money. You can also pay by VISA or PAYPAL online but you will have to pay a 5.5% service fee, charged by VISA and PAYPAL.  To pay your balance through PAYPAL, you need to log into your PAYPAL account and use our email address info@samtravelperu.com 

MAY I CHANGE THE DATE AFTER THE PERMITS HAVE BEEN BOUGHT?

Unfortunately, the answer is no. Once permits have been bought, the Peruvian government does not allow any changes so we can’t change any date after the permit has been bought. If you must change the date of your trek, the fee is $100 because we have to buy you a new permit. Permits are also not transferable nor refundable. If you cancel your Classic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu Trek, the deposit is not refundable at all!

DO I NEED MY ORIGINAL PASSPORT ON THE CLASSIC INCA TRAIL TO MACHU PICCHU?

Yes! You have to bring your original passport and it is very important that it is the same passport number, you sent to us to book your Classic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu permit. Your passport will be checked when upon entering Machu Picchu , the Inca Trail and when boarding the train. In case, you are renewing your passport, go ahead and send us a copy of your old passport to secure your permit and we can change it when you get your new passport. If so, please send us a copy of your new passport as soon as possible.

WHAT IS THE WEATHER LIKE?

The weather is very unpredictable and it’s difficult to foresee. We recommend that you plan to always dress in layers to facilitate adjusting to the quickly changing weather conditions.

WHAT ABOUT ALTITUDE SICKNESS?

In general, if you exercise 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 Altitude Sickness. See our detailed information about Altitude Sickness under FAQS.

HOW MANY PEOPLE ARE THERE PER GROUP?

The maximum group size is 8 persons. Our groups are usually between 2-6 persons. Sam Travel Peru specializes in SMALL and PRIVATE groups and provides personalized service.

HOW MANY COOKS/PORTERS FOR THE GROUP?

You will have 1 cook per group. The number of porters will depend on the size of the group. For a group of 2 trekkers, there will have 4 porters, 4 trekkers will have 6 porters, 6 trekkers will have 9 porters, 8 trekkers will have 12 porters.

DUFFEL BAG AND SMALL BACKPACK 

The evening before you start your trek, you will be given a SMALL DUFFEL BAG to pack your clothes for the next four days. The weight allowance is up to 7kg/15lbs. The team of porters will carry your duffel bag, together with the food and camping gear. It’s important to be aware that there will be no access to the 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 will 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. By Peruvian law, a duffel bag must not weigh more than 7 kilograms (15lbs). This limit is set to protect the health of the porters and animals. All bags will be weighed before being accepted. If you require more than 7 kilograms, it will then be your responsibility to carry the extra weight with your day pack. In this 7 kilos, please count 2 kilos for your sleeping bag and 1 kilo for your sleeping pad (foam or air). This leaves you about 4 kilos for your personal gear.

IS THE TREK DIFFICULT? DO I NEED TO BE FIT?

The Classic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu is a 42km (24.4 mile) hike through the Andes within the Cusco region. The maximum altitude reached is at (4,217m/13,907ft). On the second day of the trek, we will climb two mountains. The trail is a fairly difficult trek and you should be well prepared and healthy prior to starting it. You have to be moderately fit and take regular exercise. In preparation: try walking 15kms/9 miles in a day or working out 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.

ARE THERE TOILETS ALONG THE TRAIL?

This has been highly appreciated by most of our clients, especially by our trekkers, who want a private, clean and sanitary toilet! SAM Travel Peru toilet facilities have an individual tent and a camping toilet with a seat. Check out the picture, which illustrates how we set up our camping toilet on the trek by using this link: picture of toilet tent. Our toilet is always set up a comfortable distance from our campsite.  At night if you need to use the toilet it is readily accessible and clean, unlike the dirty facilities supplied by the government.

WHAT HAPPENS IF I AM UNABLE TO FINISH THE TRAIL?

In the scenario that you are unable to finish the trek due to health reasons, Sam Travel Peru will assist to the nearest town for help with transportation. We always carry oxygen on our treks for any respiratory problems. In extreme cases, a helicopter pick up can be arranged at your own expense. (Travel insurance is required and recommended). 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 continue the journey towards Aguas Calientes (cost incurred by trekker) and visit Machu Picchu according to the original plan.

ARE WE DROPPED OFF AT OUR HOTEL AFTER THE CLASSIC INCA TRAIL TO MACHU PICCHU TREK?

Absolutely!! Hotel pick ups and drop offs are included with all of our packages! If you have booked your hotel in the Sacred Valley, we will drop you off there and vice versa.

AT WHAT TIME IS THE TRAIN’S DEPARTURE?

It will depend on the train availability 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 while on the train. Therefore, you will take the train at 2:55 or 3:20pm, depending on availability.

HOW MUCH IS IT THE VISTADOME TRAIN UPGRADE?

The Vistadome train service has nicer seats, panoramic windows and ceiling. You will be offered snacks and a dance show will take place on board. You can upgrade to the Vistadome Train for $67 USD. These trains run from Aguas Calientes to Poroy. We will pick you up in Poroy and drive you back to Cusco, which takes about 25 minutes. Please request in advance.

TIPPING

If you’re happy with the services provided, a tip – though not compulsory – is appreciated. While it may not be customary in your country, it’s of great significance for the people who will take care of you during the trek.  It inspires excellent service and is an entrenched feature of the tourism industry across many SAM Travel Peru destinations. Of course, you are free to tip as much as you want, 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 YOU SUSTAINABLE? 

Yes, we are a local, sustainable & responsible tourism operator that incorporates 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 TO TAKE WITH YOU

  • Original passport (the same used for booking your trek)
  • Valid University card (if you booked as a student)
  • Good daypack (the smaller, the better)
  • Water storage:  2-3 L (Camelbaks are encouraged)
  • Comfortable hiking boots with ankle support
  • Sleeping bag (can be rented from SAM Travel)
  • Headlamp: essential
  • Toilet paper
  • Good rain gear.

WHAT TO PUT IN THE DUFFEL BAG

As a Direct Local Tour operator, we a duffel bag at your briefing and INCLUDE an extra porter, who will carry up to 7 kgs/15lbs including sleeping bag, mattress and extra clothing. By Peruvian law, a duffel bag must not weigh more than 7 kilograms (15lbs). This limit is set to protect the health of the porters or horses. All bags will be weighed before being accepted. If you require more than 7 kilograms, it will then be your responsibility to carry the extra weight with your day pack. In this 7 kilos, please count 2 kilos for your sleeping bag and 1 kilo for your sleeping pad. This leaves you about 4 kilos for your personal gear.

  • 2 t-shirts
  • 2 hiking pants at least
  • 4 sets of undergarments
  • 3 sets of hiking socks
  • Fleece/ Thermals
  • Warm clothes, down jacket — 2nd campsite temp around 3º C
  • Waterproof gloves (even if they are ski gloves, take them)
  • Comfortable shoes for camp
  • Quickdry towel. We provide small ones, you might prefer something larger
  • Small bottle of soap: we provide warm water each day to wash
  • Battery Charger: No electricity along the trek
  • Large plastic bags will be provided at the office to line your duffel
  • Sleeping bag: It has to be at least -15ºC – This can be rented from us for $20 USD

TOILETRIES

  • Face moisturizer
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Wet wipes
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Personal medications
  • First aid kit: band aids, moleskin, etc.

WHAT TO PUT IN THE DAY BACKPACK

We highly recommend a small backpack 30 to 40L for hiking in the day. A big backpack will not be allowed into Machu Picchu. The remainder of your belongings will be in your duffel bag at camp.

  • Water: Please supply your own water until the first lunch spot, then we will provide you with cold boiled water  at every meal time. Please bring your canteens.
  • Sun hat and sunglasses
  • Sunscreen
  • Insect repellent
  • Headlamp
  • Wool hat and gloves
  • Rain gear
  • Fleece or warm layer
  • Snacks like chocolate bars, cereal bars or any dry fruits
  • Personal First Aid kit and personal medications
  • Camera
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Toilet paper and small plastic bag for waste
  • Valuables

Classic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu- 4D/3N

Join SAM Travel Peru for an Unforgettable Travel Experience In Peru

  • A 100% locally owned Travel Company
  • The owner Saul Alvarez is an experienced local guide
  • The Owner knows what people want in a trek or tour
  • Uniquely designed Adventure treks and tours
  • Guaranteed high quality personal service always
  • Added value to each trek or tour for your money
Your adventure. Our expertise.

Why Travel with SAM travel Peru?

  • Superior Service
  • Inca Trail Specialists
  • 100% value for money
  • Small Groups with a maximum of 8 people
  • Delicious and nutritious meals
  • Sustainable Travel
  • Years of Professional Inca Trail Experience
9.6
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Happy Traveler

5.5
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Tours Success

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.5%

Positives Review

24
+

Travel Guide

Excellent!

5.0 Rating out of 5.0 based on 5.190 reviews

Join the Thousands of Satisfied Customers who Rate us #1 on TripAdvisor

Bernie s 2023/03/02

Had a great trip with our guide Ray Herrera and driver Alfredo. Lots of good experiences in a short period of time 4 days. Learnt a lot not just about the main tourist destinations but Peru in general by Ray. Ray has a passion for Inca history and local produce. Ray knows all the good photo spots and we managed the sun out every day .. Good culture and if you want to get on a tour ask for Ray at Sams Travel = amazing

Tanya H 2023/03/02

Ray was our Tour Guide and Alfredo was our driver for a 4 day tour we did with SAM Travel Peru. Ray's knowledge of the history of Cusco and Machu Picchu was outstanding. Ray was very accommodating with all our needs. He stayed alongside us when trekking and helped where he could. His sense of humour was pleasant to be around. Ray spoke very good English. He is such a nice guy. I would strongly recommend Ray to be your tour guide to visit Machu Picchu. Ray explained everyday what the plans were for the next day, which was reassuring what we needed to take etc

Captanjack 2023/01/012

Our 1 day tour thru the Sacred Vally with Danny was wonderful. He was very knowledgeable and able to answer all our questions in detail. I would recommend asking for him personally if you are able.

Sherry 2022/12/26

We booked the Classic Cusco to Machu Picchu tour with SAM travel which we really had a good experience. SAM travel is very responsive during the communication and cater to our changes needed. Our guide is Ray who is also an very awesome guide. He is knowledgeable, patient, humorous as well reliable, he help us take many good photos and also go extra mile to help with our request. Thanks Ray! Thanks SAM travel that gave us good memories in Peru! Highly recommend if you consider booking any tour in Cusco.

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C Clark 2023/01/20

Wow. We had such an incredible experience in Sacred Valley and Machu Picchu. Our guide, Dayvit, is the most knowledgeable guide we have ever had. He has such an extensive knowledge of the history and is very friendly and helpful. If you are planning a trip to Peru, I highly recommend SAM travel and be sure to request Dayvit!

Emma Dinzebach Clark 2023/01/10

2 day tour sacred valley / Machu Picchu highly recommend! David was the best tour guide. He knows an incredible amount about Incan culture and is personable and funny. He also kept us up to date on a political situation happening when we were there and was informative. Overall, this tour checks all the boxes. Thank you!

Nupur Joshi 2023/01/02

We used SAM Travel for a 2D/1N trip from Cusco to Sacred Valley and Machu Picchu on Dec 25-26, 2022. The team was good with communication from the start - both Saul and Junior were very helpful and professional with answering any questions and clearing up any misunderstandings. Our guide, Miguel, was prompt, pleasant, and quite knowledgeable. We enjoyed his company and insight over the 2 day trip and recommend him to anyone booking with SAM Travel.

Xueying Chen 2022/12/20

We booked the Classic Cusco to Machu Picchu tour with SAM travel which we really had a good experience. SAM travel is very responsive during the communication and cater to our changes needed. Our guide is Ray who is also an very awesome guide. He is knowledgeable, patient, humorous as well reliable, he help us take many good photos and also go extra mile to help with our request. Thanks Ray! Thanks SAM travel that gave us good memories in Peru! Highly recommend if you consider booking any tour in Cusco.

Reviews by Google

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Cheri Buccino April 21, 2024

Powerful! This journey tests your humanity and leaves you in awe of yourself and the beauty that Pachamama provides. April 2024 We conquered the Inca trail and it was only made possible with the help and guidance from our expert guides Jean Pierre (JP) and Jimmy. The knowledge these gentlemen shared was admired by all of our group and the envy of other trail hikers who stopped to listen. The hike has many layers of challenges including language barriers, altitude sensitivities and food specifications. The team at Sam travel exceeded the needs and went above to ensure our comforts were met. A special mention must be made to Mario, the Chef who somehow performed magic with nutritious flavourful meals to satisfy even the pickiest consumers and Francesco who was our lead porter who orchestrated the harmony that happened behind the scenes to get everything done. Nothing less than marvellous from this team. Thank you to each of the group who made our trek a remarkable experience.

BL
Bhavana Lalwani April 18, 2024

Jose and Henry were great guides for our first time exploring machu pichu! They were very attentive and kept everything on a smooth schedule. Highly recommend!

RY
Ryan April 9, 2024

The whole experience was amazing. Ray, our guide answered all of our questions and definitely had our best interest in mind the whole time. Timothy the cook made fantastic food and somehow found a way to prepare a birthday cake with no notice! Boni our head porter and his whole crew were kind, accommodating, and had such upbeat attitudes which really made the experience great!

Isabel Batteria April 17, 2024

I spent two days with Sam Travel’s guide Raymier, who guided us through the one-day 12-km stretch of the Inca trail and then took us to Machu Picchu the next day. In my group, I was always the last one on the trail because I come from the coast and I’m not used to altitudes, and honestly I could also have prepared physically a little better. Raymier respected my pace, never rushed me, and supported me throughout the ardous trail. He had much knowledge to share. I speak Spanish, but ended up in an English tour, and Ray’s English was very good. He was funny, respectful, and versatile. He knew where to take all the best photos and patiently took photos of all of us. I would trust Sam Travel again especially if I was lucky enough to have Ray as a guide again.

Reviews by Trustpilot

5.0 105+ opinions
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Sam Travel stands out

Sam Travel is a renowned local travel agency based in Cusco -Peru, recognized for its commitment to customer satisfaction, expert travel advice and personalized itineraries that meet the needs and preferences of each traveler.

Best food on the Machu Picchu hike
Best Camping Equipment
Our Porters
Empowering Women
Safety on the Trail
Our Christmas Party In The Andes
Tree Planting Project
Dreams Come True For Student

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