Hikers usually have certain questions about the route, difficulty, how to reserve a space?, alternative routes, weather along the route; in here you will find answers to these common questions made by travelers. The answers are elaborated according to our experience as operators of the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu.
Inca Trail, Frequently Asked Questions
- What is Inca Trail?
- How many kilometers is the Inca Trail and how many hours walk per day?
- How difficult is the Inca Trail?
- What I need to wear for the Inca Trail?
- How I can book the Inca Trail?
- What is the best time of year to do the Inca Trail?
- How long before I have to book my Inca Trail?
- Are there alternative routes to get to Machu Picchu?
- Is it possible to cancel the Inca Trail and get my money back?
- Do I need travel insurance for the Inca Trail?
- Is it possible to do Inca Trail without an agency?
- What type of accomodation is used on the Inca Trail?
- Are there restrooms along the Inca Trail?
- Does the Inca Trail is open all year?
- Are all meals included during the Tour of Inca Trail?
- How is the food for the Inca Trail? and Is it possible to order vegetarian food?
- How Cold is the Inca Trail?
- Is it common altitude sickness? and How high is the Inca Trail?
- What to do if I have bad high?
- What is the maximum size of a group?
- What is the minimum size of a group?
- Should I be fit to do the Inca Trail?
- Is it dangerous to do the Inca Trail?
- Is it possible to rent camping equipment with you?
- Do portes carry our equipment and personal items throughout the Inca Trail?
- Can I hire an extra porter?
- How much should I tip to guides and porters?
- How much money should I bring with me to the Inca Trail?
- Does the Inca Trail Tour includes a visit to Machu Picchu?
- What is Huayna Picchu?
- Do I have to pay to climb Huayna Picchu?
- Where the Inca Trail Tour ends?
- Can I stay one or more days in Aguas Calientes – Machu Picchu?
What is Inca Trail?
The Inca Trail is the name of a route that takes walk which follows the course of an ancient road connecting several archaeological sites to reach the Inca citadel of Machu Picchu. Usually the starting point of this hike is at Kilometre 88 of the railway between Cusco and Machu Picchu, then skirt and climb steep mountains to its end in the very citadel of Machu Picchu.
How many kilometers is the Inca Trail and how many hours walk per day?
The Inca Trail is 42 kilometers or 26 miles long. Camping sites are allocated by the Ministry of Culture that are between 10 and 13 kilometers away from each other so the time daily walk can vary between 6-9 hours per day and the first three days about 2 hours in the last day. The hours of walking and the distance covered may vary according to the physical state of each walker.
How difficult is the Inca Trail?
The Inca Trail is considered intermediate level hike. It does not include rock climbing, or walking on snow, so no previous experience is required. The most difficult is the second day when we ascend by a number of steps and start from 2000 meters (6500 feet) to climb to over 4000 meters (13000pies) walking down a narrow space then things get easier as the trail continues downhill, take note that you carry your personal items which may include clothes for three days, food, camera, water, camping gear, etc.
What I need to wear for the Inca Trail?
Backpack, sleeping bag, foam mattress, rain jacket, windbreaker, rain poncho, a complete change of clothes, sweater (clothing to keep warm), water bottle, water sterilizing tablets ("Micropur" is can be purchased at a local pharmacy in Cusco) flashlights, batteries, cap or visor, sunscreen, insect repellent, toilet, antibacterial or disinfectant gel paper for personal hygiene.
One thing to remember is never take your passport or identity card to enter the Inca Trail, it should be emphasized that absolutely must be the same document that you use to book the Inca Trail, otherwise it will not be possible to enter because photocopies of passports or identity cards are not accepted.
How I can book Inca Trail?
You can book the Inca Trail by contacting us through our website or by e-mail, you only need to fill out the booking form located on our website and provide us with your personal information such as: full name, date of birth, passport number or ID, of each member of your group exactly as shown in their passports.
If any member of your group would like to qualify for the student discount, will need to submit a scanned copy of your student card ISIC, and if any member of your group is under 13 need to send a scanned copy of your passport to apply the appropriate discounts.
What is the best time of year to do the Inca Trail?
It is difficult to determine an exact time to visit Peru for the variety of conditions that Peru offers is possible to say that travelers can come at any time of year. We can establish that at the Peruvian highlands the dry season (no rain) runs from May to November and is most commonly recommended. At the same time is the coldest season of the year due to the frigid winds typical of this region during these months, at night the temperatures drop to 4-5 degrees Celsius and some nights it is possible to have temperatures of 0 degrees. June, July and August are the most popular months to visit Cusco due to the different holidays that occur during these months.
On the other hand the rainy season starts in December and lasts until April, which also has a lot to offer because during this time on the Inca Trail can be observed biodiversity in all its glory, more green landscapes, wildflowers and 100 species of orchids flowering season, with rains that may last for hours but at the same time with warmer temperatures, is possible to observe some travelers and hikers do not care mud stain his boots and experiencing an adventure slightly more extreme and different from the dry season.
How long before I have to book my Inca Trail?
Permits for the Inca Trail are sold many months in advance, so it is advisable to book as soon as possible at least 3 or 4 months in advance, especially if you decide to book for high season. different from the dry season.
Are there alternative routes to get to Machu Picchu?
Yes there are alternative routes even if they are different to the Inca Trail not make them less interesting.
- Lares – Machu Picchu 4 Days
- Short Inca Trail 2 Days
- Salkantay – Machu Picchu 5 Days
- Choquequirao – Machu Picchu 8 Days
- Choquequirao – Machu Picchu 9 Days
Is it possible to cancel the Inca Trail and get my money back?
Deposits are not refundable or transferable to another person if you decide to cancel we can not transfer your permit to another customer. Government regulations do not allow us to fill the canceled space for another client and the government does not reimburse nor do will credited the cost of space. Even if we are willing to pay for another trip permit for a new client we are not even allowed to fill the space canceled by another person. All that will happen is that the group will be smaller thus not diminish any cost to the agency.
Do I need travel insurance for the Inca Trail?
It is advisable to purchase independent travel insurance in case of any medical emergency occurs or another type, in order to ensure to maximum your peace of mind and satisfaction.
Is it possible to do Inca Trail without an agency?
It is not possible do the Inca Trail independently. Government regulations do not allow it, in 2002 trekking independently on the Inca Trail is prohibited, the Regulation provides that each trekker must be accompanied by a qualified professional guide. The UGM (Management Unit of Machu Picchu) is the regulatory body for controlling access to Machu Picchu and the Inca Trail. At the same time the agency notes that companies must meet certain requirements attesting to the agency fit for the operation of this route. The license is renewed annually each company likewise the list of authorized agencies and guides which can be verified on the official website: www.machupicchu.gob.pe
What type of accomodation is used on the Inca Trail?
There are camps set up along the Inca Trail in which are used tents or carps of three people to accommodate two travelers of the same gender.
Are there restrooms along the Inca Trail?
There are few places where there are permanent sanitary facilities which are very basic and when there is not any, our team will install portable bath stores.
Does the Inca Trail is open all year?
The Inca Trail is open 7 days a week, every day of the month including Sundays and holidays; but closes in the month of February being the rainiest month on which the Ministry of Culture use this time for maintenance work throughout the route.
Are all meals included during the Tour of Inca Trail?
Depends on the type of tour you choose. The foods included are specified in each of the tours.
Vegetarian option is free, inform us in advance, please.
How is the food for the Inca Trail? and Is it possible to order vegetarian food?
If you are vegetarian or vegan then these can be accommodated. In case you have any kind of food restriction for example lactose, gluten or allergies to certain ingredients or food usually can be accommodated, please contact us first before making a booking please. If you simply do not like a particular food, unfortunately there are no special considerations for this. There is usually a selection of foods provided in the meals that you can find something you like.
How cold is the Inca Trail?
Due to the high altitude it can be very cold, especially in winter (May to September), we can experience temperatures below the "0 degrees Celsius" overnight, so we recommend bringing warm clothing and a good sleeping bag
Is it common altitude sickness? and How high is the Inca Trail?
It’s hard to know who will suffer from altitude sickness because usually all depends on the adaptive capacity of the person to the altitude is determined by your genetic makeup and has little to do with fitness or health. Most people will have no problems as long as you take the time to acclimatize properly. A day or two spent in Cusco (3249 m), walking calmly and drinking plenty of water is usually enough for most people. The highest point of the Inca Trail is 4,200 meters. You will sleep at 3,600 meters for a night or two.
What to do if I have bad high?
The most advisable is sleep, drink plenty of fluids or can also try coca tea.
The porters chew coca leaves wrapped around a black resin called "Llipta" while walking and is active (especially on the second day of the tour), this can help, because it dilates blood vessels and carries oxygen to parts of the body that need it.
What is the maximum size of a group?
Maximum number of tourists in a group is 16 people. For groups of more than 8 people
one second guide is employed.
What is the minimum size of a group?
The minimum size of a group should be 4 people.
Should I be fit to do the Inca Trail?
It is advisable to be fit for this type of trekking so you can fully enjoy every moment with the group, because included walkings of 6-9 hours daily, stairs quite steep and altitudes up to 4200 meters, it is possible even on the first day you think of abandoning the route, but the long breaks replenished their energies as you go on the road.
Having a better standard than the average fitness is desirable for the Inca Trail. Although it is also important to mention that there are many people who apparently did not meet this average standard but they were able to finish the Inca Trail successfully. If you suffer from alterations cardiac , respiratory, arterial, pressure, etc. It is important to mention before booking the Inca Trail to assess their participation.
Is it dangerous to do the Inca Trail?
Not specifically, is challenging 4 days walking in a fairly remote area, which has places where you can fall and get hurt, or to cause his own death by self-neglect, but if one is not so clumsy, careless and follow the guide instructions are unlikely to have an accident.
On the other hand, is not a good place to have a medical emergency. If you have a tendency to cardiac arrest, suddenly going into a diabetic coma, seizures or whatever, check with your doctor before you travel
Is it possible to rent camping equipment with you?
Yes, if you does not have the proper equipment to do the Inca Trail then we can offer you for rent
- Sleeping Bag
- Matras (air mattresses)
- Aditionals tents.
Do portes carry our equipment and personal items throughout the Inca Trail?
Yes, The porters carry the equipment and personal items that go into the duffel bags that can reach a maximum weight of 6 kg (remember these will be weighed before starting the trek). All you have to carry is a backpack containing items that are needed during the day (water, camera, sunscreen, rain poncho, windbreaker, sweater, etc.).
Can I hire an extra porter?
Yes, It is possible to hire 1 extra porter (16 kg) for assistance with your personal luggage: USD $ 105.00. The extra carrier can be shared by 2 people.
How much money should I tip to guides and porters?
Tips are according to your judgment and discretion, but are always appreciated by the guides, assistants and porters, but generally it is suggested to provide between 6 and 8 dollars per day, but it’s not really mandatory is better to say that you can tip according to how you think of the service during the Inca Trail, if it was your total satisfaction, "you value the service. "
How much money should I bring with me to the Inca Trail?
It is important to take extra money so you are advised to bring the following:
- First breakfast and lunch the last day.
- Souvenirs or crafts you decide to buy.
- Consider the tips according to your criteria.
- A slightly significant amount for emergencies, etc.
Does the Inca Trail Tour includes visit to Machu Picchu?
Yes, this included a visit to Machu Picchu. The last day of our Inca Trail arrive at Machu Picchu, where possible will get a wonderful view like no which will make you understand that every effort for the past 4 days Inca Trail were rewarded and admire a stunning panoramic view of Machu Picchu.
What is Huayna Picchu?
Huayna Picchu is the mountain that we see on every postcard photos of Machu Picchu. It is a very popular place for tourists because it is possible to access this mountain and reach the summit via stone steps that take about 40 minutes. Once at the top you get a great view of the entire valley surrounding the citadel of Machu Picchu, while a stunning view of the same Inca citadel of Machu Picchu. For those who enjoy adventure is also possible to walk down the mountain and reach a small archaeological complex known as the Temple of the Moon.
Do I have to pay to climb Huayna Picchu?
The ticket to Huayna Picchu is not included in our package Inca Trail. Unfortunately, it is currently not possible to buy a permit combining entry to the Inca Trail and the entrance to Huayna Piccchu. If you want to visit Huayna Picchu in the same day visit to Machu Picchu, then you must pay the full price of a permit for Machu Picchu and Huayna Picchu.
If you spend a night in Aguas Calientes and visit Machu Picchu for the second time, then it is more economical to climb Wayna Picchu on his second visit. It is very important to book entrance tickets to Wayna Picchu a few weeks in advance as is almost impossible to earn an income with just a few days in advance or at the time.
Where the tour Inca Trail ends?
The Inca Trail tour ends at the same point where you were picked up, this means you will be brought back to your hotel in Cusco.
Can I stay one or more days in Aguas Calientes – Machu Picchu?
Yes, it is possible to spend one, two or more nights in Machu Picchu town (Aguas Calientes) since there are a variety of hotels, restaurants and other businesses in that town, which absolutely will own the passenger (the company does not covers the costs for lost train or by days accommodation in town, etc).
It is important to note the departure of their flights and the availability of train tickets.