Trek to Choquequirao from Cusco (4 Days)

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Departure & Return Location

Hotel in Cusco - City of Cusco

Duration

4 Days (Departure at 5:00am)
Tour Details

The Choquequirao trek offers a unique and off-the-beaten-track experience. The lost city of the Incas sits at an elevation of 3,033 meters above sea level.

More or less, Choquequirao bears many resemblances to Machu Picchu. Both were built in the same era by the Ninth Sapa of the Inca empire, Pachacuti Inca Yupanqui. The name signifies “cradle of gold” in Quechua, the native language.

Choquequirao is considered to be the last bastion of resistance and the final refuge of the Incas, especially those who fled from Cusco when it was under siege in 1535. Led by Manco Inca Yupanqui, they sought refuge here. Presumably, it served as both a checkpoint to access the Vilcabamba area and as a cultural and religious center.

As with all the best experiences, they often follow a challenging climb, and this trek is no exception. The four-day trek to Choquequirao starts in the village of Cachora. You’ll descend to 1500 meters in the Apurimac valley. The next day, you’ll ascend to 1800 meters to reach the archaeological site. Some choose to continue hiking to Machu Picchu. However, for most, the 9-day hike offers one of the best alternatives to the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu.

Dense vegetation covers more than half of the archaeological complex. Due to its remote location, it receives an average of 20-25 visitors per day, in contrast to Machu Picchu, which welcomes over 5000 visitors daily. To boost tourism, the Peruvian government plans to install a cable car, which could result in a rapid increase in visitors. They estimate around 1500 visitors per day.

Why Choose Tayra Tours Cusco?

We provide exclusive tour guides who are locals with extensive knowledge of the route, culture, and history. At Tayra Tours Cusco, we strive to offer the best experience. We use excellent and comfortable camping equipment, and our campsites are located in safe zones.

Price Includes

  • Bi-lingual guide
  • Camping Equipment
  • Meals
  • Entrance Fees
  • Transportation

Price Excludes

  • Guide Service Fee
  • Any Private Expenses

Recommended Things to Carry

  • Original passport and Student ISIC card (if applicable), and copies
  • Travel insurance (and some copies)
  • Daypack to carry your things
  • Sleeping bag (or you can rent one from us)
  • Sunblock and sunglasses
  • Torch or headlamp
  • Deet or mosquito repellent (30% deet recommended)
  • Comfortable hiking clothes, including warm clothes for the nighttime
  • Peruvian Soles in cash
  • Anti-inflammatory tablets (e.g. Ibuprofen)
What to Expect
  • Accommodation: 3 nights in tents
  • Trek type: Cultural, adventurous, and trekking in the Andes
  • Altitude: 3,103m/10,178ft (Choquequirao)
  • Difficulty level: Moderate, rated 2 out of 5
  • Highlights: Experience a famous trek in Peru! Recommended for family trips, nature enthusiasts, and adventure seekers.
  • Acclimatization: A minimum of 1 day at altitude is recommended.
Itinerary

Day 1Cusco - Cachora - Santa Rosa

After picking you up from your hotel in Cusco, we will drive to Cachora, approximately four hours away. We will stop in Cachora for breakfast (not included).

Our trek to Choquequirao starts through the stunning landscape of the Apurimac Valley. With views of the snow-capped peaks of the Vilcabamba mountain range, we’ll trek to Santa Rosa, our first campsite.
Along the way, you’ll encounter diverse flora and fauna. We’ll stop in Chikiska for lunch and continue our downhill trek to Playa Rosalina at 1500 meters.

From Playa Rosalina, we’ll hike uphill to our campsite in Santa Rosa Village at 2200 meters.
At Santa Rosa Village, we’ll have dinner before returning to our respective tents.

Day 2Santa Rosa - Marampata - Choquequirao

After breakfast, we’ll continue until we reach Maranpata, situated at 2800 meters above sea level. Here we’ll have lunch and proceed to our second campsite at Choquequirao, located at 3,035 meters above sea level.

This second day of trekking is considered the most challenging, as we’ll cover a significant portion of the elevation gain.

Approximate walking time: 6 – 7 hours
Travel distance: 13 kilometers (8 miles)
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner, coca tea
Maximum altitude: 3,035 meters above sea level (Choquequirao)

Day 3Choquequirao - Chiquiska

After breakfast, we’ll hike to the Choquequirao archaeological site. It’s about an hour’s walk from the campsite. Here, you’ll receive a guided tour. After the tour, we’ll return to Chikiska, where we’ll set up camp for the night. The trek on the third day is relatively easy, as we’ll descend along the same route as the previous day.

Approximate walking time: 5-6 hours.
Travel distance: 14 kilometers (8.6 miles).
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner, coca tea.

Day 4Chiquiska - Cusco

We’ll start our journey back to Cachora quite early. In Cachora, we’ll meet our driver, who will take us back to Cusco.

Approximate walking time: 5-6 hours
Meals: Breakfast

Photos

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