Trip Type : Small Group Tour
Classic Machu Picchu Trek ('Inca Trail') tour

Classic Machu Picchu Trek ("Inca Trail")

International Mountain Guides
4.9 . Excellent
Travel Style: For those looking to maximize their sight seeing time. You thrive on a packed day’s schedule from 8 am to 6pm, with some (but limited) free time. Most activities and meals included. Full on
Physical Level: Full day hiking or trekking over medium to long distances. Moderate expectation of physical fitness. Strenuous
Lodging Level: Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
10 days
From: $ 2,950 $ 295 / day
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  • Explore Machu Picchu
  • Hiking up Huayna Picchu Peak for a spectacular viewpoint.
  • Cultural visit in Sacred Valley and its surrounding areas
  • Discover ruins of Machu Picchu
  • Explore Cusco

Short Description

Join us for a fun filled adventure starting in Cusco, Peru. We'll acclimate, explore local ruins and tour the "Sacred Valley of the Incas." Afterwards, we'll trek for several days to Machu Picchu, a nearly indescribable sight of early Incan architecture and ingenuity. We hope you can join us trekking to this awesome cultural and adventure experience!

Small groups are usually defined as between 10 and 24 travelers, often less. If you're the kind of person who enjoys more intimate experiences and personal service this is a good choice. All else being equal you will pay a premium for this style vs a larger group tour.
Trip Type Small Group Tour
Spend most of the time outdoors. Common trip themes and activities include cycling, hiking, kayaking, whitewater rafting.
Itinerary Focus Active
Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels.
Lodging Level Value - 3 star
Flights & Transport Only ground transport
Start City Lima
End City Lima

Trip Includes

-- Machu Picchu programs include stays in first-rate hotels with all the amenities before and after the trek.

-- All connections by private coach included.

-- All meals included excepting select dinners in town as noted on the itinerary.

-- The trek is fully staffed with an IMG lead guide

-- Local lead guide and cultural expert, assistant guides, cook staff and porters

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Depart from home on day 1, either planning to arrive in Lima in the evening and overnighting at the airport (at your expense), or arriving the early morning on day 2 and waiting at the airport for your connection to Cuzco. Note: some prefer to arrive an extra day early in Cuzco and spend an extra day there. This helps with acclimatization and it is easy to arrange an extra day of touring in Cuzco if you wish.

Day 2:   

Meals: Dinner

Once in Lima, we'll transfer to a national flight to Cuzco (10,988'), trying to choose a flight around 9:30am (consult with IMG regarding the flight number) arriving by mid-day. All members will be met at the airport and transported to the hotel. Rest and relaxation will be in order, focusing on acclimatization. Our local guide will meet us after check in, make arrangements at a local restaurant for lunch (not included), and perhaps a short tour if desired. For those who have arrived early, we can arrange a longer tour for the morning. The team will meet at 6pm for a briefing on what to expect in the coming days. A team dinner will follow.

Day 3:

Meals:  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

An exciting cultural touring day. We'll first visit the local ruins of Sacsayhuaman on the way out of town. We'll travel on to the Sacred Valley where we will tour the famous Pisak market, a good place to purchase local crafts and goods. Our last cultural visit in the Sacred Valley will be Ollantaytambo, which sits above the town in a beautiful setting. We'll overnight in a hotel here, close to our departure point for the Machu Picchu trek.

Day 4:

Meals:  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Rise around 4:30-5 AM, have a quick breakfast in our hotel, then a private bus will take us to the trailhead, at km. 82 (2,400m or 7,872'). We'll continue up the trail for some distance, to our tent camp at Llullchapampa (3,600m or 11,808'), and relax and rest up for the next day. Figure on 6-8 hours of trekking on this day and 8 or so miles: There will be awesome views well worth the effort.

Day 5:   

Meals:  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Wake up around 7, and then start trekking out of the light woodland. The trail continues to climb upwards beyond Llupachayoc, up steeper trail and rock steps. The woodland gives way to scrub, then to puna, bleak grassland and bare slopes. The ascent becomes increasingly steep, and the terrain increasingly rugged. The trail climbs steeply towards the first pass, the Abra de Huarmihuanusca (“Dead Woman's Pass”), 4198m, or 13,769'. This is a somewhat tough day by trekking standards. All trekkers are advised to train in particular for this ascent, as it will be the most demanding of the entire trip. While we will not be carrying heavy packs, the ascent will be challenge enough.

Day 6:

Meals:  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

From the valley of the Pacamayo, the trail climbs steeply up the opposite side of the valley wall, towards the second pass, Abra de Runkuracay, 3,998m (13,113'). After the pass, the trail descends towards a valley containing a shallow lake. Here, the trail changes from a dirt path to a narrow stone roadway, the beginning of the “true” Inca Trail. The stones of the roadway were laid by the Quechua people during the period of the Inca Empire. We'll journey along the most classic looking parts of the stone path, so be sure to take plenty of photos as you approach the “Third Pass,” (12,200') and, just beyond it, an Inca ruin, Phuyupatamarca (“Cloud-level Town”). We will camp at the high pass with a spectacular 360 degree panorama

Day 7:

Meals:  Breakfast, Dinner

The final section of the trail to Machu Picchu, from Huinay Huayna to Intipunku, is an easy hike, following a broad level path which winds comfortably through scrub and light woodland. After no more than an hour or two, the trail comes to a narrow flight of stone steps leading upwards into a small stone structure. This is Intipunku, and through the rectangular doorway, you can see the ruins of Machu Picchu. From Intipunku, a pathway leads directly to Machu Picchu itself, and a descent of over an hour will take us down to the actual ruins. We'll have until late afternoon to explore the area. Our cultural guide will take us for a general tour, explaining Machu Picchu's highlights. Following the tour, there will be time for individual exploration and photography. At the end of the day we'll await a bus for our trip down the mountain and then check-in to our hotel in Aguas Calientes, a tourist mecca below the Machu Picchu ruins. Overnight in hotel.

Day 8:   

Meals:  Breakfast, Dinner

A great advantage of this itinerary is that we have a SECOND day to tour Machu Picchu if members wish. This is a great time to climb Huayna Picchu in the early morning for those that are willing and able. Other members may opt for sleeping in and some morning shopping/sightseeing in Aguas Calientes. We'll all meet after lunch then catch a private train for the journey to Cusco. Get off train half way to Cusco, then private bus the remainder of the way. Overnight in hotelDay 9:

Day 9:

Meals: Breakfast

Departure for Lima, then late flight from Lima to USA

Day 10   :

Flights generally arrive early in the U.S., which leaves plenty of time to make final connections for flight home. Arrive home by mid-afternoon.


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Price From $ 2,950
Price Per Day: $ 295 per day
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  • Single Supplement (Single Occupancy): $ 300

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Flights & Transport

Only ground transport

Group Size:

Small Group - 24 max

Maximum Number of People in Group: 15

Up to15 Trekkers with 1 Senior IMG Leader and 1 local cultural expert plus a staff of Quechuan porters, cook and cook staff.

Additional Information:

Background Requirements

Fitness: Most of the trek days typically require long hiking days, 6-10 hours of effort, with the bulk of our gear carried by porters. All mornings usually start early and the day's journey often takes until dinner time. Because of the trekking portion of this trip and the general high altitude of the area (10-13,000 feet), we recommend that all participants engage in a physical training program for at least six months prior to trip departure. All participants must consult with their family physician regarding their personal health and the additional demands of high altitude well in advance of the trip.

Experience: Participants should have solid day hiking experience over steep terrain. Overnight backpacking or trekking experience is equally important. High altitude experience is not required, but is beneficial, to confirm that your body can reasonably tolerate visits to 10,000 feet and higher.

Trip ID#:


Trip Excludes

-- International airfare

-- Personal expenses

-- Valid Passport and visa

Meals Included:

6 Breakfassts, 5 Lunches and 7 Dinners

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