The 5 best places to go trekking in Cusco

Dreaming of outdoor adventures that leave you breathless and fill your Instagram with incredible photos? Then trekking in Cusco is for you! This magical place in Peru offers the most spectacular hikes that will take you through otherworldly landscapes, from snowy mountains to ancient ruins. In this blog, we’ll discover together the five best places for trekking in Cusco, perfect for any adventurer looking to immerse themselves in the beauty and history of the Andes. Get ready for an expedition through Peru that you’ll remember for a lifetime!

Discover the Unparalleled Inca Trail: A Unique Trekking Experience in Cusco

Inca Trail

The Inca Trail 2 Days to Machu Picchu is one of the most exciting and enriching adventures you can experience.This millennia-old route takes you through stunning landscapes, climbing mountains, crossing cloud forests, and exploring ancient Inca ruins.

Preparation and Best Time

To undertake trekking in Cusco, it’s crucial to be well-prepared. The best time to do this hike is during the dry season, between May and September. During these months, the days are sunny and the views are clearer, although the nights can be quite cold. Make sure to bring suitable clothing for temperature changes and sturdy trekking footwear.

Duration and Difficulty

The classic Inca Trail lasts 4 days and 3 nights, covering a distance of approximately 43 kilometers. Rated moderate to challenging, this trek requires proper physical preparation as it crosses several mountain passes, with the highest being the Abra de Warmiwañusca at 4,200 meters above sea level.

Points of Interest

Along the Inca Trail, you’ll encounter impressive archaeological sites such as Llactapata, Runkurakay, Sayacmarca, Phuyupatamarca, and finally, Machu Picchu. These ancient Inca constructions offer you a window to the past and allow you to admire the advanced architectural and engineering knowledge of this civilization.

Flora and Fauna

Trekking in Cusco immerses you in a variety of ecosystems, from high mountains to lush cloud forests. This change of environments allows you to observe diverse flora and fauna. You may see orchids, bromeliads, and perhaps, with luck, spot the majestic Andean condor.

Adventure Awaits in Salkantay: An Unforgettable Trek in the Heart of Cusco

The Salkantay Trek is a unique experience that takes you through some of Peru’s most beautiful and varied landscapes. Known as one of the best alternatives to the Inca Trail, this trekking in Cusco invites you to discover the majesty of the Andean mountains, passing through trails winding between glaciers, tropical forests, and ancient ruins. It stands out as a highlight among trips to Peru, offering an unparalleled opportunity to connect with nature and history. The Salkantay trek 4 Days is a popular choice for adventurers seeking a challenging and rewarding experience.

Route and Duration

The Salkantay Trek is usually done in 5 days and 4 nights, covering approximately 74 kilometers. The route starts in Mollepata, a small village in the mountains, and takes you to Aguas Calientes, the gateway to Machu Picchu. This is a moderately to highly challenging journey, designed for those with an adventurous spirit and in good physical shape.

The Salkantay Peak

The highest point and one of the most impressive moments of the trek is passing through the snowy Salkantay peak, which rises to 4,630 meters above sea level. From here, the views of the surrounding landscape are simply spectacular, with imposing snow-capped mountains, deep valleys, and the blue sky seemingly within reach.

Biodiversity and Landscapes

During trekking in Cusco, you will witness the rich biodiversity of the region. The trail will take you from the cold Andean paramos to the warm cloud forest, where you can see a wide variety of flora and fauna, including exotic orchids, hummingbirds, and perhaps some more elusive mammals.

Culture and Tradition

In addition to the impressive nature, the Salkantay Trek offers an immersion into Andean culture. Along the way, you will pass through local communities where you can interact with the inhabitants, learn about their traditions, and perhaps even try their traditional food.

Explore the Hidden Beauty of Choquequirao: Trekking in Cusco for Nature Lovers


Choquequirao, known as the “sacred sister” of Machu Picchu, is a hidden treasure in the heart of the Peruvian Andes. This lesser-known archaeological site offers an authentic trekking experience in Cusco filled with adventures for those seeking to explore the hidden beauty of nature and the wonders of the ancient Inca Empire.

Location and How to Get There

Located in the Cusco region, Choquequirao sits at an altitude of approximately 3,000 meters above sea level. The adventure begins in the town of Cachora, from where hikers embark on their 4 to 5-day journey to this impressive citadel.

The Trek: A Challenging Adventure

Trekking to Choquequirao is known for its physical challenge. Covering a distance of around 64 kilometers round trip, the trail winds through mountainous landscapes, deep valleys, and varied ecosystems. This route is ideal for those seeking a quieter and less crowded trekking experience in Cusco, offering spectacular views and a deep connection with nature.

What You’ll See

Beyond the physical challenge, Choquequirao impresses with its vast ruins including plazas, temples, agricultural terraces, and water canal systems, many of which are still being excavated and restored. The magic of this place lies in its serenity and the feeling of having discovered something truly special and secret.

Flora and Fauna

During your trekking in Cusco towards Choquequirao, you’ll marvel at the diversity of flora and fauna. The trails will take you through cloud forests where orchids and exotic birds such as the giant hummingbird and the Andean condor adorn the landscape, creating a unique experience for nature lovers.

Venture into the Lares Valley: Connect with Andean Culture through Trekking

Lares Valley

The Lares Valley offers a unique experience for those seeking adventure and genuine contact with Andean culture. Through trekking in this valley, you’ll not only explore stunning natural landscapes but also have the opportunity to get up close with the traditions and way of life of Quechua communities.

The Lares Route

The trekking route through the Lares Valley varies from 2 to 4 days, depending on the path you choose. This journey will take you through imposing mountains, crystal-clear rivers, and natural hot springs where you can relax after a day of hiking. Along the way, you’ll witness the impressive diversity of Andean flora and fauna.

Cultural Encounters

One of the highlights of trekking in Cusco, specifically in the Lares Valley, is the opportunity to interact with local communities. You can visit traditional villages such as Huacahuasi and Patacancha, where colorful textiles and ancestral agricultural practices are still an essential part of their daily life. These cultural encounters enrich your experience, allowing you to gain deep insights into life in the Andes.

Natural Beauty and Physical Challenge

Trekking in the Lares Valley is not only a cultural journey but also a physical challenge. The routes vary in difficulty, but many require good physical condition due to the high altitudes and uneven terrain. The reward for this effort is great: panoramic views of snow-capped mountains, turquoise water lagoons, and the satisfaction of having completed one of the most beautiful treks in Cusco.

The Challenge of Ausangate: Trekking in Cusco for the Boldest


Ausangate is a mountain that rises majestically in the Cusco region, offering one of the most rewarding and demanding challenges for trekking enthusiasts. This trail is an invitation to immerse yourself in the vastness of the Andes, to connect with nature, and to test your limits.

Location and Significance

Ausangate is located about 100 kilometers southeast of the city of Cusco and is the fifth highest mountain in Peru, with an impressive height of 6,384 meters above sea level. It is revered as a sacred mountain (Apu) in Andean cosmology, being a symbol of respect and worship for local communities.

The Trek and Its Difficulty

The trekking circuit around Ausangate is a journey of approximately 70 kilometers that is usually completed in 5 days. This trek is classified as difficult, not only because of the distance but also because of the extreme altitudes reached, exceeding 5,000 meters at several points. It is vital to be well acclimatized and in excellent physical condition before undertaking this adventure.

Landscapes and Attractions

During this trekking in Cusco, you will witness breathtaking landscapes, from vast glaciers and colorful lagoons to fields where llamas and alpacas graze at high altitudes. One of the highlights is the Ausangate lagoon, famous for its turquoise waters reflecting the imposing silhouette of the mountain.

Flora and Fauna

Along the way, you will marvel at the rich biodiversity. You may spot Andean condors soaring overhead and perhaps even catch a glimpse of the elusive vicuña, a wild relative of the llama and alpaca. The flora is equally impressive, with vast puna grasslands covered in ichu (Andean grass) and other plants adapted to life in high mountains.

Trekking in Cusco: Preparation and Tips for Your Andean Adventure

Location of Nevado Salkantay

Get ready for an unforgettable adventure in the heart of the Andes! Trekking in Cusco is not just an activity; it’s a transformative experience that takes you through stunning landscapes, ancient Inca ruins, and welcoming communities. Whether you want to explore the Inca Trail, the majestic Ausangate, the Lares Valley, Choquequirao, or the challenge of Salkantay trek 5 Days, these tips will help ensure that your journey is as exciting and safe as you’ve always dreamed.

Acclimatization: Your Best Friend

Before starting your trekking in Cusco, it’s crucial to allow your body to adjust to the altitude. Spending 2-3 days in Cusco or its surroundings, which are over 3,400 meters above sea level, will help you avoid altitude sickness. Take advantage of this time to explore the city and its surroundings.

Essential Equipment: What Can’t Be Missing

  • Appropriate Clothing: The weather can change drastically, so be prepared with layers of clothing that you can easily remove or add. Don’t forget a raincoat, as rain is frequent.
  • Trekking Footwear: Good trekking boots are indispensable. Make sure they fit well to your feet to avoid blisters.
  • Sun Protection: Altitude increases the risk of sunburn. Bring a hat, sunglasses, and high-factor sunscreen.
  • First Aid Kit: Include personal medications, bandages, antiseptics, and anything else you deem necessary.

Nutrition and Hydration: Pillars of Your Energy

Stay well hydrated and bring energy-rich snacks such as nuts, energy bars, and chocolate. Hydration is key, especially at altitude, where the risk of dehydration is higher.

Book in Advance: Avoid Setbacks

Many trekking routes in Cusco, such as the Inca Trail, require permits that must be acquired months in advance due to the limitation of daily visitors. Make sure to book your spot early to not miss out on this incredible experience.

Guides and Porters: Your Support Team

Consider hiring local guides and porters. Not only do you support the local economy, but you also benefit from their deep knowledge of the route, culture, and history, enriching your trekking experience in Cusco.

Ready to embark on the adventure of a lifetime? At Machupicchu Travel Tour, we are experts in designing tailor-made tour packages that will transform the way you travel. Our local knowledge and attention to detail guarantee that your Sacred Valley trekking experience will be unforgettable. We are not only your best choice, we are your ultimate travel partner.

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