This trek originally designed as an alternative trek to the Inca trail to Machu Picchu, turned out to be a favourite one for many people. The authenticity of the environment and outstanding beauty makes this trek very special. The terrain is similar to the Inca trail with the difference that you hardly meet other trekkers on the trail; you will experience the peasant life as you watch people work the land, camp near their homes and encounter little visited Inca sites in the midst of a pristine environment reminiscent of ancient times.
This is a full service trek were you only carry a day pack: All gear, food and a duffle bag (we will provide bag) with up to 8kg of your personal belongings is carried by the pack animals.
On the day before you will begin your trek at 7:30 a.m. in the morning, we’ll pick you by private vehicle from your hotel for a great Sacred Valley tour. This is the natural and most efficient way to get close to the trail head while acclimatizing and getting familiarized with Inca trails. We will drive over the “Ccorao” pass above Cusco to descend on a winding road to the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Here we will hike on Inca trails through the magnificent Inca citadel of PISAC considered as one of the outstanding Inca remains because of the quality of the stone work and breath-taking location on a mountain saddle overlooking the Sacred Valley. After a 1 1/2hour visit and hike we will drive down the mountain for a short visit to the colonial town of the same name with a quick stop at their famous Indian handicraft market. Afterwards we will drive following the Urubamba River downstream to Urubamba city; here we will visit the local food market and have lunch at a local restaurant nearby. Afterwards we’ll visit Ollantaytambo, considered the most authentic living Inca town. This town has been continuously inhabited since Inca times until the present, conserving its original urban layout and stone walled homes. A guided walking tour through the extensive ruins and cobblestone paved narrow streets will make you feel like you are travelling back in time. Transfer to trailhead and spend the night at our first night Campsite at Arequipapampa. L, D.
After a nutritious breakfast, we will meet our crew and observe them pack our animals to begin our hike up towards the beautiful “Silque” Canyon. We begin to ascend by way of narrow canyon following a stream that will gradually get smaller; we can observe tall granite walls on the sides of the canyon populated by a large variety of orchids and bromeliads, filling the environment with magnificent colours when in bloom. We continue by crossing the stream several times until we reach higher lands and find our camp set up near the village and lake of “Ancashcocha”, a warm cup of tea is waiting for us at the dinning tent and later a delicious dinner before we settle for the night. Beautiful views of the “Veronica” mountain are seen behind us most of the way. B, L, D.
After a hearty breakfast we are ready for this challenging day. We begin ascending towards the high Huayllanay Pass (4,550 meters). At first we take a steep zigzag trail up to where we find an original cobblestone paved Inca trail that will take us smoothly towards the high pass. Not far we can spot the beautiful waterfall that feeds into the Ancashcocha glacier lake. The wild “Huallata” or Andean Geese and Black Ibis are often spotted in this high area. We will enjoy a picnic lunch in the midst of this high mountain scenery; later as we begin descending from the pass we will enjoy beautiful views of high mountains, we will pass by the ruins of Incarajay and further down we find small settlements scarcely populated by native peasants that mark our way to the village of Q’esqa. Further along we follow a long descending trail into greener vegetation while views of the classic Inca trail to Machu Picchu appear in the distance. Later in the afternoon, we’ll reach our campsite next to the beautiful Inca remains of Paucarcancha: A unique Inca settlement restored to original condition that probably served as a “Tambo” or rest point and also a control point between two canyons that lead the way to the main trail to Machu Picchu. Views of the nearby Glacier, snow peaks and well preserved Inca remains are the highlight of this day during our trek. B, L, D.
After breakfast we begin to descend on a well-defined trail down a narrow canyon until we reach the Hatunchaca bridge near the village of Huayllabamba where we meet the Classic Inca Trail and the numerous hikers that will be going the opposite direction from us. We continue to hike down a wide trail until we reach a lookout point to observe the Llactapata archaeological complex: this large Inca remain was restored a few years ago. Further along as we continue descending we’ll find scattered peasant’s homes along the trail until we reach the Valley floor next to the Urubamba River. When we reach the valley we continue upriver to our private campsite at Km. 82. Located right in front of the spectacular Veronica Glacier a warm cup of tea and cookies will be waiting for us at the dining room. Here we camp the night in the comfort of roomy tents, indoor plumbing toilets, hot showers and a firewood sauna for your enjoyment. B, L, D.
PRICES PER PERSON (Minimum 4 people)
Apu Huayllanay Trek 4D4N $560.00
Single Supplement $50.00
Upgrade to “Tented Hut” at Camp Km 82, in double occupancy: $50.00
Note: If less than four people sign up please add US$ 100 each to cover costs.
ADD ANY OF THESE OPTIONALS TO ENHANCE AND COMPLETE YOUR VISIT