Lares Trek to Machu Picchu 4 days 3 nights
The Lares Trek to Machu Picchu is a 4-day, 3-night adventure that takes you through the stunning landscapes of the Peruvian Andes and culminates with a visit to the ancient Inca citadel of Machu Picchu. This trek is a fantastic alternative to the more popular Inca Trail, offering a more culturally immersive experience as it passes through remote Andean villages where traditional ways of life still thrive.
Day 1: Cusco – Lares – Wacawasi
The journey starts with a pick-up from your hotel in Cusco, followed by a drive to the Lares hot springs. After soaking in the thermal baths and having lunch, you’ll start the trek by walking to the village of Wacawasi, where you’ll camp for the night. This day involves approximately 4 hours of hiking.
Day 2: Wacawasi – Sondor – Aruray Cocha – Yurak Cocha – Ancasmarca
After breakfast, you’ll begin a challenging hike up to the trek’s highest point, the Sondor Pass (4,600 meters / 15,092 feet). You’ll enjoy stunning views of the surrounding mountains from the pass before descending to the beautiful Aruray Cocha and Yurak Cocha lagoons. After lunch, you’ll continue to the campsite at Ancasmarca, where you’ll spend the night. This day involves approximately 8 hours of hiking.
Day 3: Ancasmarca – Pumahuanca – Ollantaytambo – Aguas Calientes
On the third day, you’ll descend to the Pumahuanca Valley, passing through traditional Andean villages and observing local farming practices. After reaching the village of Pumahuanca, you’ll be transported to Ollantaytambo, an ancient Inca fortress. From Ollantaytambo, you’ll take a train to Aguas Calientes, the town at the base of Machu Picchu. This day involves approximately 5 hours of hiking.
Day 4: Aguas Calientes – Machu Picchu – Cusco
On the final day, you’ll wake up early to catch a bus to Machu Picchu. You’ll have a guided tour of the famous archaeological site, learning about its history and significance in Inca culture. After the tour, you’ll have some free time to explore the site on your own before catching a train back to Ollantaytambo and then a bus to Cusco.
Note: The above itinerary is a general outline and may vary depending on the season. Additionally, the trek’s difficulty level is moderate to challenging, so it’s essential to be in good physical condition and adequately acclimatized to the altitude before embarking on this adventure.