Choquequirao Trek Classic
5 DAYS / 4 NIGHTS
The Quechua name “Choquequirao” means “Cradle of Gold” and this Inca site is located high above the raging Apurimac River, surrounded by lush tropical cloud forest. This was one of the last refuges of the Incas after the Spanish invasion. The route to Choquequirao will take you through breathtaking scenery, from arid slopes dotted with cacti to dense cloud forest inhabited by many bird species, watched over throughout the trek by the great snowy peaks the Incas believed were gods. This trip is a wonderful opportunity to explore one of Peru’s remotest mountain regions and least well-known Incan cities. This package is for hikers looking to enjoy and stay some time in Choquequirao. The landscape and wild life makes this an even more enjoyable and unforgettable experience.
DAY 1: CUSCO – CACHORA – CHIQUISKA
An early morning scenic drive through high Andean plains will bring us to the village of Cachora, where we will meet our mule drivers. Leaving the village, we will begin with a gentle hike along an old mining road to Kapulyoq Pass (2800 meters / 9,240 feet). From this pass we will have our first mesmerizing view of the deep Apurimac canyon and the surrounding snowy peaks. After resting and enjoying the scenery, we will continue our descent of approximately three hours along a dusty trail, zigzagging down the arid wall of the canyon, to our first camp at Chiquiska oasis (1800 meters / 6000 feet).
Distance: 17 km
Climate: warm and sunny
Hiking time: 7 hours
DAY 2: CHIQUISKA – CHOQUEQUIRAO
After breakfast, we will continue our descent to the bottom of the valley, where we will cross the Apurimac River (1495 meters / 5000 feet). From here we will start to climb the long, steep trail to the impressive archaeological complex of Choquequirao, where we should arrive just in time to enjoy a breathtaking sunset over the deep canyon and the surrounding mountains (3000 meters / 9,900 feet).
Distance: 14 km
Climate: warm and windy
Hiking time: 7 hours
DAY 3: CHOQUEQUIRAO
During the morning we will visit the restored section of Choquequirao and explore some of the ruins that are still covered by lush cloud forest vegetation. Much work has been done in recent years to excavate, clear and restore the site. After lunch, those who choose to can visit the Cascade House (restored buildings and terraces some 300 meters (1000 feet) below the main structures of Choquequirao). From the highest point of the archaeological site (the “usno”, or ceremonial platform) there are outstanding views of the Apurimac canyon far below, and if we are fortunate we may even see a great Andean condor soaring above us.
Distance: 5 km
Climate: warm and hummed
Hiking time: 7 hours
DAY 4: CHOQUEQUIRAO – COCAMAZANA
After breakfast you will have a last chance to explore the main structures of the archaeological site, before beginning the long descent to the Apurimac River. Following lunch we will ascend to our last camp at Cocamazana (2300 meters / 7,600 feet). On our last night together we will enjoy an excellent meal with spectacular views of Choquequirao and the Apurimac Canyon.
Distance: 17 km Climate: warm and sunny
Hiking time: 8 hours
DAY 5: COCAMAZANA – CACHORA – CUSCO
In order to avoid the intense sun, we will start out early in the morning with the climb up to Kapulyoq Pass (2800 meters / 9,250 feet), from where we will continue along a flat country road to the village of Cachora, arriving before noon. After a well-deserved rest we will be saying a farewell to our mule drivers and begin our return bus journey to Cusco. If there is time, along the way we will stop and visit Saywite, an enormous rock carved by the Incas into a 3-dimensional representation of their empire, complete with flora and fauna. We will arrive back in Cusco in time for a hot shower, before heading into town for a night out!
Distance: 14 km
Climate: warm and windy
Hiking time: 7 hours
- Pre departure briefing.
- Early morning private transfer to trailhead
- English speaking professional guide
- The north face or Eureka tents- 2 persons and inflatable sleeping mat.
- Kitchen tent, Dining tent with camp tables and chairs
- First aid kit including emergency oxygen bottle
- Choquequirao Inca Site entrance fee.
- Hot water every morning and evening for washing purposes (while hiking)
- Cook and Cooking equipment
- Excellent Meals (04B,05L,04D + 05 morning snacks) food includes pancakes, omelets, soups, fresh fruit, avocado, pasta, chicken, fish, meat, rice, all rich in carbohydrates and suitable for trekking, hot drinks including coca leaf tea which is excellent for the altitude
- We supply boiled water to fill in your water bottle all the time,(while hiking) if you may need more, please request it with enough time ahead to your crew.
- Teatime the first three days (tea, coffee, biscuits, popcorn)
- Horses days 1-5 (for equipment and personal items, actually your main heavy stuff, will be carried by the horses, it means you only will carry a small day bag, day by day, we included
- Private Bus returning from Cachora Town to Cusco City
- Transfer to your hotel
- Sleeping bag
- Lunch and Dinner on the last day
- Walking stick
What do I need to bring?
- A rucksack with your personal belongings for the whole period of the trek which is to be carried by you including sleeping bag and mattress, when you do not hire a personal porter
- A big rucksack to be provided to a personal porter, and a small rucksack to be carried by you with the essentials for the day (this is when you hire a personal porter)
- Rain gear (annorax and rain trousers if available) and rain poncho (plastic ponchos can be purchased in Cusco)
- Strong and waterproof trekking boots recommended
- Sandals or flip-flops for a higher comfort while at camp
- Warm clothes (thermal clothing is also recommended, especially for sleeping)
- Sleeping bag (please inform our Reservations Department if you wish to book this extra service at the moment of your booking)
- Foamy mattress: will be provided by us but is to be carried by you
- Head torch and batteries
- Camera, batteries and memory card (batteries consume more quickly under cold conditions)
- Wide brim hat or cap to protect you from the sun, rain and cold
- Sun block
- After-sun cream or hydrating cream for face and body
- Insect repellent – minimum recommended 80% DEET – no malaria risk has been reported
- Toilet paper
- Snacks: biscuits, energy bars, chocolate, raw fruits, muesli, etc. Please note that we do provide a daily morning snack and our meal service is very complete and well supplied. This recommendation applies for all clients being used to a specific snack, as it may happen that it is not included in our selection
- A canteen or camel back, plastic water bottles are no longer allowed into the Inca Trail.
- Optionally: water- sterilizing tablets in case you take river or stream water along the route.
- Swimsuit (for showering or bathing chances)
- Cash in soles and/or US$ (small change)
- Original passport
- Original International Student Identity Card ISIC (in case you have applied for a student discount)
- Bad knees require walking sticks or poles (rubber covers required in order not to damage the Inca Trail), as well as knee braces
- Rubbish bag and plastic bags for dirty or damp clothes
- Sun glasses
- Two pair of trousers (light and thick)
- T-shirts and shorts
- Wool socks and hat
- Pocket Knife
- Original passport, original ISIC student card (In case you are student) and extra money (Soles and dollars cash.
2016 prices per person $ 590.00 USD.
Please contact us, specifying:
-Number of people in the trek
-Train service upon request: Expedition train, Vistadome train, Hiram Bingham (Luxury Orient Express)
– Students: US$ 20.00 (students require a valid International Student Identity Card.
Please note that Youth Travel Cards are not valid)
– Teenagers: US$ 20.00 (up to 15 years of age, passport copy required for all bookings)
– Children: US$ 40.00 (up to 7 years of age, passport copy required for all bookings)
– Early bookings: 5% on full program price for all bookings confirmed at least 6 months in advance. This discount may not be applicable in case a promotional price is offered
Optional service hired:
• An extra horse to carry your personal items: US$ 20.00 Per Day. A horse can carry up to 30 kg.
• Sleeping bag rent: US$ 5.00 Per Day. Our sleeping bags are –18ºC-comfort (0ºF) and mummy form and include a sleeping liner.
• Walking stick lightweight aluminum ($2.00 per day, per stick) two sticks are recommended for tough hikes.
• Single tent supplement (if you don’t want to share a tent) $25.00 per person
(1) On our clients’ recommendation, we suggest spending an additional day in the settlement of Choquequirao to enjoy this beautiful archeological site in more detail. On our way back to Cusco, there is also the possibility of visiting the thermal baths in Cconoc. Ask us for more information.
(2) The trek to Choquequirao must not be underestimated. Especially thesecond day involves great physical exertion to complete. Combined with high altitude and extreme weather (it can get very hot) the trek can be hard work. Therefore, we strongly recommend that you are well acclimatized, in good shape, and healthy.
(3) From the first to the fourth day (from Cachora to Huanipaca) we are accompanied by mule drivers and mules for carrying the camping equipment and our customer will only carry a daypack with the essentials for the day up to 5 kg.
(4) Tips for porters, cooks and guides are always welcome. The porters are also very grateful for a small donation, for example clothes or school equipment for their children.
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