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Short Inca Trail to Machu Picchu on a less demandingand offers you fascinating ruins of ancient Inca settlemente.
Joining the trail at KM104, our route takes us into the heart of the majestic Andes. Climbing to take in breathtaking views, pausing to admire and learn about ancient Inca ruins and walking amongst the fascinating flora and fauna, this Short Inca Trail to Machu Picchu culminates with our arrival at the Sun Gate of Machu Picchu. Perhaps a little breathless as much from the view as from the hike, your first glimpse of this ‘new wonder of the world’ promises to be an unforgettable experience.
We rest and relax overnight in the town of Aguas Calientes. With your comfortable hotel room booked in advance, you will have time to explore the town, or perhaps even enjoy the Hot Baths from which the town gets its name. Dining together at one of the best restaurants in the town, we will sample some of the finest Peruvian food while sharing stories of our hike and the excitement of the day to come.
On our second day we rise early take a full tour of Machu Picchu. Our guides are especially selected for their knowledge of Incan culture and history, and so you can be assured of a fascinating and informative tour. There is an option to climb Huayana Picchu mountain (additional cost) once the tour concludes.
With all transfers and tickets booked in advance, we believe this tour offers the perfect combination of an authentic Peruvian hiking adventure and tour of Machu Picchu, but that is less physically demanding than the many multi-day tours available.
So why not join us at Peru By Locals for this unforgettable adventure!
High lights of the Short Inca Trail
- Trek with our passionated local guides that hiked the Inca trail more than 500 times and guided Machu Picchu more than 1000 times
- Enjoy one night hotel after your hike
- Savor the true Peruvian cousine at Indio Feliz
- Follow the original Inca trail and explore all the Incan sites along your journey
- Enter to the most sacred city of the Inca Machu Picchu through the Sun gate before Sunset
- Tour Machu Picchu very early in the moorning before the big crowds
Short Inca Trail to Machu Picchu – Deatils
Type of tour: Train ride, hike, historical
Total distance covered: 12 km / 7.4 miles
Total walking time: 6 to 7 hours, about 3 hours up the hill and 2 hours in relativily flat ttrail and the rest of the time is for resting, ex’plore Incan sites, pictures, etc.
Lowest Elevation: 2150m (7,053 ft)
Highest Elevation: 2670m (8,759 ft)
Type of accomodation: . 3 star hotel room at Aguas Calientes town and this will be included on the trip package
Good for: Don’t have enough time? to hike the complite 4 day Inca trail but still want hike, we will make your dream come true of taking you on the short Inca trail so you can hike part of the classic Inca trail and enter Machu Picchu through the Sun gate.
Our guides: PERU BY LOCALS was a dream that came thuth on 2015 for Jose Condor who guided treks from 2014 un till today and have been to Machu Picchu for over 1000 times, now Peru by Locals has a groups of top guides around among men and women that had a proffesional degree and get refresh trainning every year these folks had been to USA training with NOLS (National Oudoor Leadership Shool) training about WILDERNESS FIRST RESPONDER sinze our treks go in the wilderness and your helth is our priority in our trips so, our guides are totaly trained to assist any fo your needs while on you are vacationing, we envest on our guides because we belive they are the main ingredient of any trip.
Peru by Locals is not only a travel company but a group of great leaders that love sharing our culture with you and love being with travellers.
Eco – friendly company for a better planet
The climate changing is happening fast that encouraged us to be environmentally conscious and going green inspired us as well as people over the world, we believe that small eco-friendly decisions can add up to a huge difference to our planet, the reason we created environmentally – sustainable itineraries in all our trips. We are taking actions because we know we can help
- We encourage our guests to bring water bottles or canteens to refill then up and not buying plastic bottled water
- We encourage our team to do what we do including on their homes
- we Minimize the use of plastic
- We support eco friendly small businesses
Day 0: Briefing
At PBL we believe it’s important that all of our clients have the opportunity to ask questions about the Short Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, basically this is for you ask the last details about the hike before we start the hike. At a pre-arranged time, your guide will provide a full pre-trek briefing at your Cusco hotel the day before the start of the trek. A Peru by Locals representative will also be available at the briefing to collect any outstanding cash balance for the tour.
Day 1: Following the steps of the Incas
To ensure that we have plenty of daylight hours for the hike ahead, and that we arrive at Machu Picchu in good time, we will collect you from your Cusco hotel early in the morning (the exact time will be confirmed at your briefing). Taking 1.5 hour van to the train station in Ollantaytambo, we join the train service that takes us to KM104 the start of our trek. The train journey of around 1.5 hours provides a unique perspective of the surrounding area. Carving along the valley floor, there are photo opportunities galore as we pass by majestic snowcapped peaks, eerie cloud forests and traditional Andean villages.
Arriving at KM104 energised and raring to go, we make one final equipment check before getting underway. Our path immediately takes us onto the short Inca trail, leading us away from the bustle of the train station and into the most beautiful mountain countryside, and the fresh Andean air.
The first half of our hike is a moderate 3 hour climb to the Incan ruins of Wiñaywayna (2,650m). Your guide will set the pace of the hike to suit the whole group, taking breaks to rest whenever needed. Perhaps the most beautiful and well preserved ruins on this section of the trail, your guide will provide a comprehensive commentary about the site, as you rest and take in the views.
We will have prepared a boxed lunch for you, which we will enjoy together at Wiñaywayna before continuing on. The afternoon begins with a short one hour hike that brings us, breathless with anticipation, to Inti Pinku, or the “Sun Gate”. Nothing really prepares us for our first views of Machu Picchu, the lost city of the Incas! Without question one of the most famous ancient sites in the world, these are images that are instantly unforgettable and we will have plenty of time to take them all in. Our hike of Short Inca trail then concludes with a 40 minute downhill trail to the entrance gates of Machu Picchu, and more photo opportunities.
Here our time on the Short Inca Trail ends and we catch a bus together to Aguas Calientes. We will have dinner together at one of the best restaurants in town «Indio feliz» before you retire to your chosen hotel for a well earned nights sleep.
- Distance Covered: 12 km / 7.4 miles
- Walking Time: 6 to 7 hours
- Lowest Elevation: 2150m (7,053 ft)
- Highest Elevation: 2670m (8,759 ft)
- Difficulty: Moderate
Day 2: Machu Picchu Tour
Day 2 starts even earlier! Your hotel will provide either a buffet or boxed breakfast at 5am, so that we can take one of the first buses up to Machu Picchu. The 30 minute drive winds steadily upwards to the citadel, and we should arrive to see the most magnificent sunrise over the Andes before taking our place in the queue to enter the site.
We enter the site together and your guide will provide a fascinating tour for around 2-3 hours. The tour is guaranteed to bring the spirit and history of Machu Picchu to life, and your guide will pick a route that avoids the biggest tourist groups, and ensuring that all of the best photo opportunities are covered.
Following the tour, you can either climb Huayna Picchu mountain if you booked the permit in advance or take the bus back to Aguas Calientes to collect your luggage from your hotel. Taking the train back to Cusco at around 3pm, it is the perfect opportunity to relax and reflect on the experiences of the last 2 days. Finally, on arrival in Cusco, you will be met by one of our representatives who will transport you back to your hotel
Inclusions & exclusions
Included on the Short Inca Trail Machu Picchu:
- Mini-van transfer to and from your Cusco hotel
- Expedition train service from Cusco to Km 104 (start of the hike)
- Expedition train service from Aguas Calientes to Poroy (this train service can be upgraded to the Vista Dome service at an additional cost of US$ 25 per person).
- One boxed lunch (Day 1)
- Entrance tickets for the Inca Trail and Machu Picchu
- All bus tickets to and from Machu Picchu
- 1 night at a 3 hotel in Aguas Calientes, including breakfast, this can be updgraded at your request for an extra price
- Professional tour guide, knowledgeable in Inca history & tradition, fauna & flora and first aids in the wilderness
- First Aid Kit and Oxygen tank carried by your guide
- A dinner after the hike
Excluded on the Short Inca Trail Machu Picchu:
- Lunch on Day 2 after touring Machu Picchu
- Tips for your guide and driver. we usually recomend to tip with 15% of the total cost of the trip
Are you ready to book? email us to email@example.com or send us a Whatsaap message to +51 989585967 and joun us for an incredible hike.
Short Inca Trail – Additional option
- HUAYNA PICCHU (US$ 70) – Huayna (or Wayna) Picchu mountain has a 400 permit per day limit which is divided into two groups; the first group from 7-8 am and the second from 10-11 am. If you would like to climb the mountain we recommend that you notify us at least 2 or 3 months in advance (especially between April and August) so that we can confirm availability and arrange the permit.
Trek Price per person:
Group service: USD 480
Private service: USD 510
- Students:$30 (please provide a copy of your ISIC card when booking the hike)
- Children up to 15 years of age will be considered as students (please provide a copy of the child’s passport when booking the hike)
WHAT TO BRING ON THE TREK?
Please, remember to bring your original passport and that should be current one, if you have acquired a new one after you made your booking, bring both the one you use for booking your trip and the new one, the information you provided us in time of your booking have to match with your tickets in the Inca trail, the reason we ask you for your personal information when you book the trip.
Hiking shooes, they should be confortable for your feet.
Fleece, Temperatures are usually over 50F° druring the day and night so one fleece is enough
T-shirt, you may considering brining one that you will be wearing during the hike and one for Machu Picchu on day 2.
Socks, one pair you wil be wearing during the hike and one pair for Machu Picchu day.
Sun hat, some days can be hot and suny, we recommend you to bring a sun hat that can keep the sun off your face.
Light long pants, trekking pants are the best those that you can sip off the legs, plus they dry fast in case it rains
Sunscreen SPF 35+ recommended
Camera or you phone for capturing those beautyful moments, considere also bringing chrager sinze you will have acces to electricity at the hotel
Bug repellent, there are mosquitos all around the year make sure you pack your bug spray.
Cash. Its always good to bring cash for apreciations to your guide, or buy any goodies but most of the restaurants, or shops take credit cards.
Frequently asked questions
What is the terrain like? How challenging is it?
The trek is rated as moderate to and covers approximately 12 km / 7 miles on uneven, rocky terrain with steep uphill and downhill with about 60% of up hill and 40% of down and flat seccion.
How long before should I book the short Inca trail?
- The short Inca trail spots should be booked in advance especially from April to August, as this is busy season, and from September to January there are usually spots left.
- The Peruvian Ministry of Culture administer control Inca Trail. They are the only ones able to authorize access to the Inca Trail.
- Access to the Inca Trail is limited to 500 people per day, which includes tourists and guides.
- Reservations for the Inca Trail can only be made from March to January.During February the Trail is closed for maintanance.
- The availability applies to the INCA TRAIL itself and not to any tour operators. For this reason any agency you may contact will have the same availability of permits for the Inca Trail.
What is the weather like on the ShortInca trail during the year?
The Machu Picchu area has a humid climate and tends to be warmer, since it is located at a lower altitude and near to the Amazon Jungle. The average temperatures at Machu Picchu are between 23°C to 25°C (73°F and 77°F), with the minimum temperature around 18°C (64°F). The Cusco area has only 2 well-defined seasons: wet season and dry season. The wet season starts in November and ends in March. During this period, it rains almost every day for three or four hours, but also there are several sunny days. The dry season begins around March and lasts until October. June and July are the coldest months. Paradoxically at noon the temperatures can reach 23 °C (77°F), the annual highest temperature.
How many days should I stay in Cusco before the hike to adjust to the altitude?
Cusco is at an elevation of 3,400 meters / 11,154 feet, but the short Inca Trail and Machu Picchu are located below 7000 ft so, you can eather start the hike right after the following day you arrive to Cusco, you wont have any problem with altitude.
Do I need to bring money on the trek?
You should consider bringing money, as you may want to buy bottled water, snacks, Gatorade, beer? etc. especially in town after fenishing the hike or buy souveniers.
The lunch after Machu Picchu tour at Aguas Calientes is not included, so you will need money for that as well. We recommend you to bring soles rather than dollars; there are banks and exchange offices in Cusco where you can change any type of currency.
Do I need to carry my own medicine or first aid?
Your guide will have a first aid kit all the time while you are on the trek, which includes some pain killers, bandages, small bandages to prevent blisters, oxygen tank, pills for case of diarrheas and similar. At any time of the trek please feel free to ask for anything you may need , however, if you need any special medication or you have a special medical condition, please, contact your doctor to get the best advices prior to the trek.
How big my group is going to be?
We are specialized in both small and big groups, but we like small groups because that way our clients get personalized service especially when you encounter lots of thing on treks, such as Incan sites, flowers, flora and fauna – your guide spends lots of time with you so you can learn more about our culture and history.
Of course, in case any situation requires to take more than 8 people in a group, that is not any problem for us at all, – for example, a group of friends or family that is more than 8, we are happy to have them in a single group.
Will I get to see the sun rise?
Probably seing the sun rise up in Machu Picchu is something you want to have and we can make it happen, on day 2 after you hike thorugh the short Inca Trail we will be catching a bus very early in the moornign from A guas Calientes town to Machu Picchu so we can get to see the sunrise over the mountains in this espectacular city of the Incas.
How do I get water on the hike?
You will need to bring water for the hike, we recomend you to bring about 1.5 litters at least for the hiking part and then you can buy more water at the town of Aguas Calientes for later at night or Machu Picchu tour.
Is there any age limit?
In the Inca trail there is not a minimum age or limit ,- any person who is prepared for trekking can do it., The short Inca trail is a moderate hike so, you will still need to have a certain lever of fitness.
Can I enter Machu Picchu with my backpack?
You are allowed to take into Machu Picchu backpacks up to 20 liters , if you have a bigger bag that you carried on the trail, you can check it in the hotel for Machu Picchu tour then pick it up for train ride.
What time do I get back to Cusco?
You will be back in Cusco around 7pm after tha Machu Picchu tour, If for any reason you have to be back in Cusco earlier than that, please advise us at the time of your booking or at least over one month before your hike begins, as we have to buy you the train ticket for exactly specified trains.
Will I have any extra time in Machu Picchu after the tour with my guide?
You will be finishing the tour in Machu Picchu by 10 am and then your guide will leave you in Machu Picchu on your own so, you can enjoy it at your leisure and take a bus down to Aguas Calientes anytime you feel ready to leave Machu Picchu. At Aguas Calientes you can meet everybody from the group then for lunch before your train leaves.
Should I have to book Wayna Picchu mountain in advance?
The Wayna Picchu mountain has a limit of permits up to 400 per day which is divided into two groups -, the first group from 7am to 8am and the second one from 10am to 11am., We really recommend you to book it in advance, especially for the dry season or high season that runs from April to August,. Consider booking it 2 or 3 months in advance and email us for the availabilities.
What is the toilet situation on the Inca trail like? Should I bring my toilet paper?
There will be one toilet at the begining of the hike, one in the midle and one at Machu Picchu but they don’t provide toiolet paper so you should considere bringing some.
How big my day backpack should be?
Thirty litre backpack will be big enough to carry your belongings such as water, rain gear and extra cloths, because it is pretty much like day hike sinze day 2 is only a tour of Machu Picchu.
Can I pay the rest of the balance in credit card or does it have to be in cash?
We take the balance of the payment in cash, so you won’t need to pay extra fees,.Of course you can use PAY PAL, or CREDIT CARD, but you will need to pay the fees that are usually over 6%.
In the day of your briefing when your guide will meet you, one of the representatives will meet you too to collect the rest of the balance for your trek.
In order for us to reserve your spot on this Classic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, you are required to send us the following information below (detaisl): full names, passport number, age, gender, nationality and make the relevant deposit of US$200 per person using PAY PAL as indicated below:
When you have sent us the information of each person, made your deposit using PAYPAL and once we have both, we will confirm your tour. Thank you so much for choosing PERU by LOCALS.
If you have any questions, send us an e-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org