6 Exciting Hikes to Do in Peru (After Machu Picchu)

By Chau Mui
November 15, 2017

Checking off Machu Picchu from your Bucket List is the greatest feeling in the world. But there’s plenty more to see, explore, and most importantly, trek, in Peru, once you’ve reached the Lost City!

Be sure to see what else Peru has to offer, from glacial lakes to cascades to even the deepest cavern in South America.

1. Laguna 69

Laguna 69 Peru

Image: Chau Mui

Despite the innuendo like name, Laguna 69 stemmed from a governmental program to name each of the 400 plus lakes in the newly formed Huascarán National Park. Laguna 69 is located in Ancash, Peru and an overnight bus (7 hours) from Lima, Peru or 2 day bus ride from Cuzco. The long trek is definitely worth it to the town of Huaraz, and for this gorgeous trek that takes you for a hike through valleys, mountains and finally, the gorgeous glacial lake on top of the mountain.

Trip to consider: Trekking the Huayhuash Circuit, 13 Days from $2,299

Highlights include the unparalleled scenery and sleeping under the stars

2. Pastoruri Glacier

Pastoruri Glacier Peru

Image: Chau Mui

Glaciers in Peru?! Who would have thought?

Between the 1970’s -1990’s, over 100,000 people a year visited the Pastoruri Glacier. It was one of Peru’s largest hotspots for skiing, snowboarding and other winter sports. Unfortunately, over the past twenty years, the glacier has shrunk to less than 50% of it’s original size. Come visit the site before it disappears completely (experts say in 10 years), and come see one of the last remaining tropical glaciers in Peru. Learn more about what you can do to help with global warming HERE.

Trip to consider: Lima to Quito, 20 days from $1,900

Highlights include camping in the Amazon Jungle and exploring the pre-colombian history of Peru

3. Huayhash Cordillera Whitewash

Huayhash Cordillera Whitewash Peru

Voted by National Geographic as one of the most beautiful hikes in the world, this 8-12 day trek is one for the adventurous, eager to do another hike after Machu Picchu. You’ll need a professional crew to guide you for this one, and only experts should try to navigate this without a lead. You’ll be exploring the Cordillera Blanca -the largest group of big peaks in the Western Hemisphere including the highest mountain of Peru, the 22,205-foot Huascarán.

Trip to consider: Huascaran National Park, 4 days from $699

Highlights include visiting local mountain villages and exploring the city of Huaraz

4. Nor Yauyos - Cochas Landscape Reserve

Nor Yauyos - Cochas Landscape Reserve Peru

Image: Heiner Amado Cadillo via Wikimedia Commons

Lagunas, cascades, alpaca, archaeological sites, oh my! Opened in 2001, the Cochas Landscape Reserve is the perfect suggestion for travelers from single to multi day hikes. You’ll have the largest variety of sites to see, including the Sima PumaCocha - the deepest cavern in all of South America (this cave is reserved only for expert spelunkers),  turquoise lakes and over 4 different cascades.

Trip to consider: Pacaya Samiria Adventure, 6 days from $1,627

Highlights include river cruising and piranha fishing, and night hike excursions

5. Arequipa - Colca Canyon

Colca Canyon Peru

Image: world-wide-gifts.com via Wikimedia Commons

The Colca River (13,650ft) in southern Peru is more than twice as deep as the Grand Canyon!! The bus is 10 hours or a one hour flight from Cuzco - but the sites are worth it. You might even spot some wild condors in the distance - as you trek through hot springs and the Valley of the Volcanos!

Trip to consider: Colca Canyon from Arequipa to Arequipa, 2 days from $307

Highlights include watching Condors fly over the canyons and observing one of the deepest canyons in the Americas

6. Moray to Maras

Moray to Maras Peru

Image: Philipp Weigell via Wikimedia Commons

Located only an hour away from Cusco, this is a hike to squeeze in if you’re tied for time after Machu Picchu. The agricultural terraces of Moray are an Incan ruin and their unique circular depressions in the land are thought to have been a farming experiment to see how climate affected growth on each level. While here be sure to visit the salt evaporation ponds near Maras.

Trip to consider: Peru Inti Raymi Classic, 7 days from $2,995

Highlights include exploring many lesser known Inca ruins like Pikillacta and Tambomachay

Did you enjoy this artice? You might also like:

Top Trips for Visiting National Geographic's Best Hikes in the World

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78 Peru Trekking Tours

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