What is the Inca Trail: activities and journey of the Inca Trail

Inca Trail

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All roads lead to Rome. This popular expression has its own version in Peru, where all roads seem to lead to Machu Picchu. The Inca Jungle, Salkantay Trek and, of course, the one that concerns us, the Inca Trail is, in its full version of four days, the most popular and exclusive way to access the sacred temple of the Incas.

It’s a path between thousand-year-old stone steps that is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and that has a limit of 400 places per day during its entire 4-day tour.

Inca Trail 4 days

Overall, the Inca Trail consists of a 4-day complete version of 43 kilometers of virgin forest, dense fogs, majestic views and a whole series of identity signs of the glorious and millenary past of power of the Inca people.

llactapaca peru

Inca Trail: Day 1

The Inca Trail starts with a first trip of 8 kilometers of distance in which you will cross the section that includes the localities of Cuzco and Wayllamba.

The adventure of the Inca Trail begins at 4 in the morning with a bus trip to the town of Piskacuchu, at more than 2,700 meters above sea level.

This is where everything begins. You will travel the beautiful Urubamba River until the journey itself leaves you in Miskay.

From there we will ascend up to 3,000 meters to enjoy the highest point of the mountain of Llactapata, from which you can enjoy the stunning views left by the ancient Inca city of Llactapaca.

The journey will continue for the next 5 hours through the valley that creates in parallel the Kusichaca River.

Following its course you will discover many new species of fauna and flora. With the arrival at the camp in Wayllabamba an intense first day will conclude.

llamas peru

Inca Trail: Day 2

The second day of the impressive Inca trail increases the requirement of the distance traveled from 8 to 12 kilometers.

That is why the walk starts at 6 o’clock in the morning where, after a lunch with which we will gather strength, we will start with the hardest section of the day.

It’s an ascent up to the 4,200 meters of altitude in which we will pass through Abra Warmihuañusca and for the famous passage of the Dead Woman in which in a very dry landscape with little vegetation we can see a lot of llamas and alpacas, many of which we can approach since they are domesticated.

In the afternoon, we will enjoy a second, much smoother section of the forest where we will observe a great variety of typical Andean birds. After this we will camp more than 3,600 meters high.

camino inca

Inca Trail: Day 3

The third day of trekking along the Inca Trail is the most demanding of the entire route, since we will travel a distance of 16 kilometers between the towns of Picaymayo and Wiñaywayna, where we will make a 12-hour trek.

After 3 kilometers we will arrive to Abra Runkurakay, one of the main archaeological complexes on the way to Machu Picchu.

The same has an altitude of 4,000 meters. It will be the highest point we reach. After this we will descend to another archaeological complex, the one of Sayacmarca.

In its two parts: the ceremonial and residential, as well as its own irrigation system that centuries later supplies the area.

The demanding trek of the third day will continue through the Inca tunnel to reach the third archaeological complex of the day, the Phuyupatamarta, or also known as a city on the clouds, a nickname whose origin is close to the sky.

We will continue the walk along the long descending stone steps until we reach Wiñaywayna, where there is an impressive Inca complex in which they were engaged in agriculture, where we will camp for the night.

inca trail

Inca Trail: Day 4

The fourth and last day of the Inca Trail is the most relaxed as far as walking is concerned, since in this last day we will enjoy more of the arrival to the desired destination: the Machu Picchu.

To get there will be possible just after waking up very early that will take us to walk for an hour the cobblestone route paved by the Incas and that will take us directly to Machu Picchu.

After crossing the famous Puerta del Sol, also known as Inti Punku, we will experience one of the most magical moments of the entire Inca Trail, contemplate the sunrise from the top of Machu Picchu.

After that we will carry out a two-hour tour with an expert guide who will explain all the details of this incredible place.

Finally we will have free time to enjoy on our own and we can visit places like the Temple of the Moon or the impressive Inca Bridge.

Around 1:00 pm we will take the bus to Aguas Calientes, where we will eat and then take the train back to the city of Cuzco.

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