DAY 1: SACRED VALLEY OF THE INCAS (Pisac + Moray + Maras Salineras + Ollantaytambo)
We will pick you up at your hotel at 7:30am, with our private van and head towards the Sacred Valley of the Incas, taking the direct route to Pisac. We stop first at the Mirador of Taray to enjoy a classic view of the Urubamba valley and its traditional farming villages. You will see how the agriculture in the Sacred Valley has changed little in the past five hundred years. Onward, we drive to the archaeological site of Pisac, where you can see the biggest Inca cemetery with more than 2,000 tombs. There, we can admire the incredible farming terraces carved into the mountain, explore the Inca tunnel and the religious area of this important citadel. Here, we will spend about 2 hours, exploring the Inca city. Then, we head down to the colorful market of Pisac, spend about 20 minutes visiting it and then drive to Urubamba for lunch.
With timeless charm, we visit the archeological site of Moray also known as “The Greenhouse of the Incas” a deep bowl of architectural wonder. Levels of terraces are carved into a huge bowl, which was excavated by the Incas. The terraces have varied microclimates depending on how deep into the bowl they are placed. Archeologists believe that they were used by the Incas to discover the optimal growing conditions for their crops.
Continuing on our journey to the colonial town of Maras, we look down onto the pre-Inca salt “mines” called salineras in Spanish. Thousands of salt pans have been passed down through countless generations and used for salt extraction since before Inca times. A hot spring at the top of the valley discharges a small stream of heavily salt laden water, which is diverted into salt pans and evaporated to produce salt. This is one of the few places in the world where you can find naturally pink salt!
Finally, we drive to Ollantaytambo, having time to explore the age old and bustling Inca village and the massive Inca Ruins, with a tour provided by our guide. Visit the ruins of the Sun Temple at the top of the formidable terraces and learn about the importance of this site for the Inca during the beginning of the Spanish conquest. Here you spend the night at your hotel in Ollantaytambo, ready to start the Inca Trail the next day.
- 2* Accommodations: Veronica View Hotel or Tunupa Lodge
- 3* Accommodation: Pakaritampu Hotel or El Alberge
- There are no 4* hotels in Ollantaytambo.
Day 2: Ollantaytambo – Km104 – Wiñay Wayna – Sun Gate – Machu Picchu – Aguas Calientes – Cusco
Your guide will pick you up at your hotel at 5:30 am in Ollantaytambo to transfer you to the Ollantaytambo train station for the 6:10am Expedition train. After an hour 15 minutes train trip, we arrive at 104 kilometer (2,100m/6,927ft) of the Cusco-Machu Picchu road where we begin your trek and pass by the first checkpoint. Afterwards, we begin a moderate climb for three hours to the magnificent archaeological site of Wiñay Wayna (2,650m/8747ft). Once we arrive you may enjoy the spectacular views of the Urubamba canyon, stunning Inca sites and the connection with the traditional four day Inca Trail.
After we have had time to enjoy this beautiful sight, we continue our hike towards the Sun Gate (2,730mts/9,007ft). From there you will have the first spectacular view of Machu Picchu Citadel in all its brilliance and majestic monumentality. After enjoying the view, we walk downhill for about one hour to the citadel of Machu Picchu. Once there we will visit one of the most important mystic centers of the world: Machu Picchu Sanctuary. On your 2.5 hours private tour, your guide will expertly direct you through the enigmatic ruins and its most important sites. You will see the Temple of the Sun, Temple of the Condor, Temple of Three Windows, Sun Dial, Quarry, the House of the Inca, the urban areas, agricultural terraces and many different types of architecture.
After that you will have some time for further exploration of Machu Picchu and taking photos before we head down to Aguas Calientes. In the evening (6:20pm) you will take the return Expedition train to Ollantaytambo and catch our private van to Cusco and your hotel. You will arrive around 10:00 pm.
Meals included: Breakfast at your hotel and box lunch
Difficulty: Moderate to difficult
WHAT IS INCLUDED
- Sacred Valley Tour
- Entrances to the Inca cities and archeological sites
- Inca Trail permit
- Professional guide for two days.
- Expedition train from Ollantaytambo to KM 104 and from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo.
- One nights hotel accommodation with private room, bathroom and breakfast included.
- Meals a indicated on the itinerary
- Bus tickets from Machu Picchu down to Aguas Calientes.
- Personal assistance.
WHAT IS NOT INCLUDED
- Hotel – optional upgrades
- Upgrade to Vistadome: $67 USD per person – return train in the afternoon at 6:20pm to Ollantaytambo only.
- It is not possible to hike Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain due to time constraints.
- Tips for your guide
ADDED VALUES FOR FREE
- Transfer from the airport to hotel: (Cusco Hotel only).
- SMALL GROUPS: up to 8 hikers
- EARLY TRAIN: for the return to Cusco from Aguas Caliente
$527 USD per person without hotel
$567 USD per person with 1 night 2* hotel
***Private service is available for $100 USD more per person.
***All entrance fees are included and we operate our tours in small groups averaging 5 persons with a maximum of 8!
- 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.
- Upgrade to Vista Dome Train: $67 USD. (Aguas Calientes to Poroy (Cusco) at 4:43pm)
- Single Supplement: $30 USD
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% 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 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.
In an effort to provide a more personalised service to our passengers, we in SAM Travel Peru 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 TOP 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.
OUR SERVICE PROJECTS
SAM Travel Peru has always believed that we should give back to the communities we pass through on our treks. Therefore, as part of our commitment in responsible tourism, we socially support and employee from these communities.
SAM Travel Peru is proud to be able to support these beautiful people, not only in hiring them for work but to bring things back to grassroots, to share in their home and families. This makes us happy to have a holistic approach with our highland employees and their families!
A beautiful reflection of our attitude in everything we do, is that we wish to make life richer and more meaningful for all involved.
Please read carefully the following information; it will help you answer all of your questions about our services and Sacred Valley & 1 Day Inca Trail.
WELCOME TO CUSCO
You will be welcomed at Cusco airport and taken to your hotel, please ensure that you inform us of your full flight details at least 14 days prior to your trek. Look out for our representative holding an orange board SAM Travel Peru at the arrival terminal. It can be done on any date that is best suited to you!
Your briefing will take place the night before your trek. It will be held at our office at 6 or 6:30pm, depending on your confirmation email details. The office is located at Calle Santa Teresa Nº383 ; office 107 (second floor). We are next to Subway sandwich shop and share a lobby with Hotel Casona Corrales.
CAN I STORE MY LUGGAGE AT YOUR OFFICE?
Of course! During the tour your main luggage can be store at our office or at your hotel, both are for free. Please don’t pack anything you will need for your hike.
HOW TO BOOK THE TOUR?
Please be ready with the following information (FROM EACH PARTICIPANT in your group). We cannot purchase an an entrance to Machu Picchu or the train without the following information:
- Personal information (your full name, exactly as on your passport):
- Passport number
- D.OB. (dd / mm / yyyy)
SECOND, we require a deposit of US$200.00 per person in order to purchase a your entrance to Machu Picchu and train ticket. 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 or click here on the payment method of your choice, either VISA or PAYPAL.
WHAT ABOUT THE BALANCE?
It would be greatly appreciated if you pay in cash at our office (US dollars or Peruvian soles) here in Cusco. We have many cash machines in 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 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 email@example.com.
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.
- For children from the age of 2 to 11 the discount is $40.
- 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 firstname.lastname@example.org
MAY I CHANGE THE DEPARTURE DATE AFTER THE TICKETS HAVE BEEN BOUGHT?
Unfortunately the answer is “No”. Once the tickets have been bought the government does not allow any changes, so we can’t change any departure date after the tickets has been bought. Tickets are also not transferable nor refundable.
*** If you cancel your Moray, Salt Mine & Machu Picchu Trip, the deposit is not refundable at all!
DO I NEED MY ORIGINAL PASSPORT?
Yes for sure! 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 entrance to Machu Picchu, train ticket, other entrances and reservations. The rangers will check when you enter Machu Picchu. The train company will also check your passport before allowing you to board the train.
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 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 into Machu Picchu or the train. If you do not have both you will not be allowed to enter into Machu Picchu or get on the train. They are very strict about this here!!
ARE WE DROPPED AT OUR HOTEL?
Absolutely! Included in our packages is dropping you off at your hotel on the return from your trek or tour. 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, we wil pick you up there.
If you’re happy with the services provided, a tip – though not compulsory – is appropriate. While it may not be customary to you, it’s of great significance for the people who will take care of you during the tour. 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 more or less as you feel, depending on your perception of the quality and the length of your tour. 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 for that we incorporate the universal principles of tourism: protect the environment and benefit the local communities respecting their culture and religion. With this in mind, we have trained all our staff to know, understand and respect the local places and it´s people.
The 1 Inca Trail Machu Picchu DOES NOT INCLUDE the extra porter, so, you will need to carry all your things, please try to pack as light as possible which is the key to enjoy this amazing trek
WHAT YOU SHOULD BRING FOR SACRED VALLEY & 1 DAY INCA TRAIL
- Original Passport (it has to be the same you have used for booking your trek)
- Good daypack (the smaller, the better)
- Water bottle: 2 liters
- Comfortable hiking boots with ankle support
- Toilet Paper
- Dress in layers
- Hand sanitizer
- Wet wipes
- Personal medications
- Sun hat
- Wool hat only in the cold season
- Rain gear if rainy season
- Snacks like chocolate bars, cereal bars or any dry fruits
- Rain plastic poncho (provided by SAM)
- Extra money for souvenirs, drinks & tips