The 4 Day/3 Night Lares Trek to Machu Picchu is a great alternative to the Inca Trail offering the beauty of the Andes Mountains with less crowds and offering the opportunity to learn and experience rural Andean life. With stunning landscapes and remote settlements, the area has remained largely untouched by tourism and retains its authenticity, offering a glimpse of life the way it used to be in Peru.
Day 1: Cusco (3,350m) – Lares (3,100m) – Quishuarani (3,700m)
Early morning rise. Our guide will pick you up from your hotel and we will drive 3 hours through the Sacred Valley turning off at the town of Calca to head to Lares village. Once we arrive into the town we will go over to relax and enjoy the beautiful outdoor hot springs. After lunch, we will travel by bus for 20 minutes to the start of the trail known as Pascana. From here, we start our hike to Quishurani where we meet up with our and horseman and pack the horses. The trek will take us around 2.5 hours.
Upon arrival, our campsite will be set-up for us. In your free time you can have a rest in the tents or you can meet some of the local “campesinos” and see some of their weaving techniques. This is a lovely day filled with great landscapes and the opportunity to visit several Andean villages.
Day 2: Quishuarani – Cancha Cancha (3,800m)
We depart early in the morning for our longest day on the trail. We will hike approximately 7 hours with a midday lunch break. We start our ascent to the highest point of the trek, Pachacutec Pass (4,450m). You will have many chances to see an abundance of wildlife, and flora. From the pass, you will be rewarded with superb views of Pachacutec Lake and the snow peaks of Pitusiray, Sawasiray, and Chicon. The path then continues down a hill for 2.5 hours to the village of Cancha Cancha where we have our campsite waiting for us. We will have dinner with the group in our dinning tent and will overnight at the Cancha Cancha campsite.
Day 3: Cancha Cancha – Huaran (2,800m) – Ollantaytambo (2,700m) – Aguas Calientes
After a delicious breakfast, we start our easy hike today. We will walk down hill for approximately 5 hours hiking to the village of Huaran. From there, we take the local transport to the town of Ollantaytambo, a beautiful well preserved Andean town. Depending on your train departure, you may have some free time to explore before boarding the train to Aguas Calientes where we will overnight in a hotel.
Day 4: Machu Picchu (2,430 m) – Cusco
At around 5:30 am, soon after breakfast, we will take the 30 minute bus trip up to the Sanctuary of Machu Picchu. Once here, our guide will show us the mysteries of the great Inca City. Machu Picchu was discovered in 1911 when the explorer Hiram Bingham stumbled upon it. The guided tour will last about 2 hours and afterwards you will have free time to explore the ruins on your own. We will take the bus back down to Aguas Calientes. In the afternoon, we will take the train to the city of Cusco arriving there after nightfall.
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