INCA QUARRY TREK TO MACHU PICCHU
The Inca Quarry is a great option of hiking for those who want to experience the nature, the Inca sites and getting a firsthand look of the country lifestyle in the Peruvian Andes. The Cachicata Trek to Machu Picchu is within the abilities of most reasonably fit people. The hike is 32 kilometers long in total and its highest point is at 4,450m/14600ft above sea level. In this Inca Quarry Trek we will spend the first two nights camping and the third night you will stay at a hotel in Aguas Calientes.The Inca Quarry trek is for sure one of the top Alternative treks to Machu Picchu, listed by National Geographic Magazine.
Besides the amazing mountain scenery, flora, and fauna, the Cachicata Trek: The Inca Quarry to Machu Picchu enables you to be introduce to the Inca history during the trek, we will visit traditional villages and very important sites like: Perolniyoc Inca ruin, part of the Inca Trail to Ollantaytambo and the Cachicata Inca Quarry itself. The Cachiqata Trek allows you to see the place where the Inca builders carved the stones to build Ollantaytambo fortress.
Cachicata Trek – Overview
First day : Cusco – Soqma – Rayan
Second day : Rayan- Inti Punku – Choquetacarpo
Third day: Choquetacarpo – Ollantaytambo – Aguas Calientes
Four day : Aguas Calientes – Machu Picchu – Cusco.
DAY 1: CUSCO – SOQMA – RAYAN
We pick up you from your hotel at 4:00 am, we then drive through the Sacred Valley 1 hour and 40 minutes to arrive to the village of Soqma (3,205 m / 10,512 ft). Which is the beginning point of Cachicata trek, the horsemen will be waiting for us at this village ready for this adventure trek. To start the Inca Quarry trek from Soqma, we’ll gently make our way up following one of the side valleys, walking 1 hour and 30 minutes of hiking, we will stop at the waterfall of Perolniyoc; which is one of the nicest falls in the northern part of the Sacred Valley. We will continue our hike for one more hour uphill to reach the archaeological site of Perolniyoc, located above the waterfall, after explore the ruins with our guide, we will walk for one hour to arrive to our lunch spot and camp ; we spend the night at Rayan campsite (3,700 meters/12,136 ft).
Meals: Breakfast / Lunch / Dinner
Walking distance: 8 km/5 miles
Estimated walking time: 4 to 5 hours
Difficulty of the hike: Moderate
Minimum altitude: 3,205 m/ 10,512 ft
Maximum altitude: 3,700 m/ 12,136 ft
DAY 2: RAYAN – INTI PUNKU – CHOQUETACARPO
After breakfast we will set off from the camp, 3 hours of slow hike will lead us to the highest pass of Cachicata trek called Puka kasa pass (4,450 m /14,600 ft), for many people this is the hardest section because the altitude but is the most spectacular day, we will see many snow-capped mountains and the Sacred Valley in the other side. Once we reach the mountain there will be a magical feeling of surviving one the highest passes on this mountain range.
Then we walk downhill for 25 minutes to our lunch place. In the afternoon, we will hike for two more hours undulating trail with some ascents and descents. The last 25 minutes of this segment lead us uphill to the highest pass of the trek, Kuychi K’asa (4,457 m/ 14,619 ft). Then the trek goes downhill for 2 hours to the famous site the called Inti Punku, or the Sun Gate, where we will have a spectacular view of Veronica Mountain (5,682 m/ 18,637 ft) and the Sacred Valley of the Incas. We will spend the night at Choquetacarpo which is 30 minutes downhill from Inti Punku (3,600m/ 11,808 ft).
Estimate Walking distance: 13 km/ 8 miles
Walking time: 8 to 9 hours
Trek difficulty: moderate
Minimum altitude: 3,600 m/ 11,808 f
Maximum altitude: 4,457 m/ 14,619 ft
DAY 3: CHOQUETACARPO – OLLANTAYTAMBO – AGUAS CALIENTES
We will continue our Cachicata trek having an early breakfast and then walk down for one hour to arrive to Cachicata, the Inca Quarry (3,525 m/ 11,562 ft), the reason for the name Cachicata trek; where we will be able to walk around and observe all the stone works did by the Inca builders before to transport down to Ollantaytambo. Our guide will show us the remains of the unfinished stone work left by the Incas, because the invasion of the Spanish conquerors.
From the Cachiqata quarry we will descend for 3 hours until we arrive to Ollantaytambo (2,840 m / 9,315 ft.) our lunch place. In the afternoon we will have train connection to Aguas Calientes, where we spend the night at the hotel. In the evening we will have dinner in one of the restaurants in the town.
Distance to walk: 11 km/ 7 miles
Estimate walking time: 4 hours
Trekking difficulty: moderate
Minimum altitude: 2,840 m / 9,315 ft
Maximum altitude: 3,525 m/ 11,562 ft
DAY 4: AGUAS CALIENTES – MACHU PICCHU – CUSCO
You will have breakfast at your hotel before we take a very early bus (5:30am). The tour guide will teach you about all the history of this mysterious and mystical place. We will visit the Sun Temple, Royal palace, Main Temple, Three Windows Temple and Sun Dial. After the guided tour, you will have free time to explore on your own or take the following options:
Visit the Sun Gate: You will have an opportunity to walk (approx. 2 hours up and down) up to the Sun Gate (Inti Punku) to see Machu Picchu from a different angle.
Hike to the Inca Bridge: The Inca Bridge offers a dose of adventure for your next Machu Picchu visit. However in this case, the adventure is a little less strenuous, but a lot more death defying, not for people with vertigo. Or climb up some of teh mountains that machu picchu has, but book them in advance, because there isn’t many spots.
In the afternoon you will return to the train station in Aguas Calientes for the trip back to Ollantaytambo. Upon your arrival to the train station you will be transferred by car to Cusco.
Maximum altitude: 2,400 m/ 8,024 ft
Minimum altitude: 2,000m/ 6,400 ft
Distance to walk: 11 km/ 7 miles
Estimate walking time: 4 hours
Trekking difficulty: moderate
Included in the Inca Quarry Trek to Machu Picchu:
- Pre-departure briefing 1 or 2 days before the trek
- Pick up from your hotel in Cusco
- Horseman’s and horses to carry our camping and kitchen equipment
- English Speaking Professional Guide
- 4 Season tents, with capacity of 4 persons, but used only by 2
- Sleeping pad
- 04 breakfasts, 04 lunches, 04 dinners
- First aid kit including emergency oxygen bottle
- Train from Ollantaytambo – Aguas Calientes – Ollantaytambo
- Transfer from the Train Station to Cusco
- One night accommodation in Aguas Calientes Hotel
- One way bus from Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu
- Entrance ticket to Machu Picchu
Not Included in the Inca Quarry Trek:
- Sleeping bag : you can rent in our office $ 20 usd
- Walking poles : posible to rent $ 15 usd
- Lunch at Aguas Calientes on the last day.
- Tips (Cook, horseman and guide)
- Travel insurance
- Huaynapicchu Mountain $ 30 usd
Note: if you want to climb up to Wayna Picchu, we kindly suggest you to book in advance, because the spaces are limited for any additional information contact us.
What you need to take for The Inca Quarry Trek
- Original Passport is required for Cachicata trek
- ISIC card (if you are a student and want to qualify for the discount)
- Walking boots are suggested for Cachicata trek
- Waterproof jacket,pants / rain poncho
- Warm jacket
- Hat and gloves
- Comfortable Trousers
- Sun hat
- Sun cream
- Insect repellant
- Toiletries and hand sanitiser
- Personal medication
- Camera and film
- Flash light
- Spare batteries
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