Cusco City, Sacred Valley Tour & 2D Inca Trail
4 Days / 4 Nights
Tour Location: Cusco City & Sacred Valley plus 2 days on the famous Inca Trail
Tour Type: Enjoy a few days at the regions highlights before setting off for the 2 Day Inca Trail
Total Distance of Hike: 15 KM/ 9.3 Miles
Good For: Those who enjoy hiking and have a moderate level of fitness
Difficulty: Moderately challengiCusco city & sacred valley tourng hike
Considerations: Permit required for Inca Trail. All entrances are included.
Cusco City, Sacred Valley Tour & 2D Inca Trail 4 Days / 4 Nights
Day 1: Welcome to Cusco + Cusco City Tour
Welcome to the Imperial City of Cusco! Our friendly representatives will welcome you at the Cusco airport and transfer you to your accommodation in Cusco. Please keep in mind that landing at 3,300 m.a.s.l. can have its toll on the body. Do not feel concern if upon arrival you experience some shortness of breath or a small headache. This will all go on time. For this reason, it is highly recommended that you take it easy upon arrival and let your body ease into the altitude by staying hydrated.
Your Cusco City Tour will begin at 13:00 hrs, when we will come to pick you up meet at your hotel lobby. In this tour, you will visit the key sights in the city centre and Inca archaeological sites in the surroundings, including Cusco Cathedral, the Q’oricancha Museum, Sacsayhuaman, Q’enqo, Puca Pucara and Tambomachay.
To begin, we will head to Cusco’s Plaza de Armas (main square), to visit the famous Cusco Cathedral. Designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Cathedral will awe you with its impressive architecture, extensive collection of original art works and all gold-leafing decorating the altars.
Continuing on, we will continue on foot through an ancient Inca-built street from the Plaza de Armas to the Q’oricanca or the Temple of the Sun. At the Q’oricancha, you will be able to compare and contrast the building methods of the Incan culture and the Spanish conquerors. This was the key spiritual center of the Incas, leading to all four quarters of the Inca Empire. There is also a bronze, high altar to be seen.
From Q’oricancha, your group will walk down Avenida El Sol, where you will take your bus for your 25-minute car drive outside the city to visit the most important archaeological sites around Cusco. You will be taken to the majestic Inca site of Sacsayhuaman, with its enigmatic 200-ton monoliths. Here, you will have a guided tour of the site and then free time to explore on your own. From Sacsayhuaman, you will take a five minute bus ride to the Q’enqo Inca site to see its fascinating Incan altars. Following, you will take another five minute drive to Puca Pucara, a small, circular Inca site. The final stop on our tour is Tambomachay, a water temple with impressive water fountains, thought to be used by the Inca for bathing. We’ll then drive back down to Cusco where the tour ends in the main square.
Accommodation: Rumi Punku (3-star hotel)
Meals: Not Included
Day 2: Super Sacred Valley
Today´s tour will begin with an early morning pick up, at approximately 07:30 hrs, from your accommodation in Cusco. This tour will be a full day tour in which you will have the opportunity to visit the most important and beautiful sites of the Sacred Valley, including the town of Pisac, Moray, Maras and Ollantaytambo.
From Cusco, we will head to the first stop of the tour, the town of Pisac. This will be approximately a 45-minute car drive. On the way, we will stop at some of the most beautiful lookout points from where to see the Sacred Valley. Once in Pisac, we will arrive at the town´s traditional market for a brief exposure to all local artisans and their colorful merchandise. This stop will be the perfect opportunity for some souvenir shopping. Still in Pisac, we will continue to the town´s main archaeological site, where you will be first introduced to the day´s learnings about the powerful Inca Empire.
After the guided tour in Pisac, we will continue with your tour by heading on a 1-hour car drive to the next town of Urubamba for lunch. Here, you will have the option to choose where to grab a bite to eat.
Continuing on, we will make our way to Moray after lunch. Moray is an archaeological site located in the Sacred Valley and known for its unusual ruins. The site is composed of deep, circular terraces thought to have been agricultural terraces during the Inca Empire. At this site, you will have the opportunity to contemplate the grandeur of such site and will be amazed by the perfection of such construction.
From Moray, the tour will continue to the next stop at the town of Maras. It is here where you will be mesmerized by the naturally occurring salt mines still cultivated to date. This site will be sure to impress you by the thousands of small salt-evaporating on ponds. Be sure to check the small shop offering some of the most soothing baths slats made from the extracted salt in Maras.
To finish off, we will head to the last stop of the tour – the town of Ollantaytambo. Once here, you will explore the town´s archaeological fortress along with one of the most important Sun Temples of the region.
Your tour will end after your guided tour in Ollantaytambo. We will make sure to drop you off at your accommodation here.
Accommodation: Pakaritampu or Similar (3-star hotel)
Meals: Breakfast (at the hotel)
Entrance Tickets: Included
Day 3: Inca Trail - 2D/1N
Your day will begin with an early morning pick up from your accommodation in Ollantaytambo – at approximately 05:30 hrs. From here, we will head to the train station to catch the 06:10 hrs train headed to Aguas Calientes town. The train tracks follow the Urubamba River and will give you spectacular views of the nearby farmlands, snow-capped mountains and the mighty Urubamba River itself. The train ride will be approximately 45 minutes, and will take us directly to the trek´s trail head, commonly known as KM 104 located at 2,000 m.a.s.l.
Once at the trailhead, we will have some time to get ready for the day´s hike. Here you will meet your trekking chef and porters and will also enjoy breakfast before starting your trek. Be sure you bring your original passport, since this is the very first checkpoint along the Inca Trail. After breakfast, you will visit the first Inca site on this trail, Chachabamba – the first ancient Incan checkpoint for entering to the Inca trail, and will have a brief guided tour to understand its importance. It is also here, where we will take a moment to take group photo for the books!
The hike will begin from KM 104 on a gently uphill trail towards the Classic Inca Trail. If the weather is clear, we will have tremendous views of Machu Picchu, the Urubamba River and other surrounding Inca Sites. There will also be waterfalls to be seen. The trail itself has some flat areas, as well as some short uphill and downhill hikes. It also has steps, arranged in sections that can be narrow in some areas, but not dangerous. After hiking for approximately 3 hours, we will reach the most beautiful Incan site on the Inca Trail, Wiñay Wayna (Forever Young) at 2,600 m.a.s.l. Here you will visit and learn about the sites impressive and water fountains, temples and agricultural terraces. The backdrop of Wiñay Wayna will also be sure to impress you, dropping off a cliff, with beautiful mountains surrounding the area.
From Wiñay Wayna, we will continue trekking to the Sun Gate, from where we will see the picturesque landscape of Machu Picchu. At this location, we will take enough time to breathe in the beauty of the surrounding sights before continuing on with our descent to Machu Picchu and Aguas Calientes town. A big advantage of this hike, is that by the time we reach Machu Picchu, most of the day travelers will have returned home. This will leave the sights of Machu Picchu to be almost empty.
From Machu Picchu, we will take the bus down to Aguas Calientes and head to your hotel. For dinner, we will head as a group to Indio Feliz. This restaurant is considered to be the best restaurant in Aguas Calientes. After dinner, we recommend going to bed early to make the most of the next day.
Accommodation: La Cabaña or Similar(3-star hotel)
Meals: Breakfast (at the hotel), lunch (packed) & Dinner
Day 4: Visit to Machupicchu
Today will be the most important day of your tour. To get the most out of the day, we encourage every group to have an early breakfast before catching one of the first buses up to Machu Picchu (starting at 5:30 a.m.). The hotel will hold your bags for you while in Machu Picchu. This way, you will only be required to take your personal backpack with all essentials up to Machu Picchu. The bus ride from Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu will take approximately 30 minutes.
Once in Machu Picchu, your guide will introduce you the beauty of Machu Picchu. You will head directly to a well-sought out location from where you will watch the sunrise and take photographs. Your guide will then guide you around the main sectors of the citadel, for a total of 2.5 hours. During this guided tour, you will learn some more about the history and culture of the Inca Empire. At the end of the tour, you will have some time to yourself or, if you arranged to hike either extra hike, Huayna Picchu Mountain* or Machu Picchu Mountain, your guide will show you where to begin this hike.
For your return from Machu Picchu, we recommend to begin heading back to Aguas Calientes town by no later than 2 hours prior to your train departure. Your guide will inform you of your train times prior to your return. The train return from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo will take approximately 2 hours. In Ollantytambo, our Alpaca Staff will be waiting for your right by the station´s exit door ready to bring you back to Cusco by car. The car ride to Cusco will be approximately 2 hours and will have you dropped off at your hotel in Cusco.
- Huayna Picchu Mountain or Machu Picchu Mountain are both additional hikes available once inside Machu Picchu. Either extra hike may be hikes after your guided tour of Machu Picchu and must be arranged ahead of time. Both hikes are subject to availability and at an extra cost of USD $75 per person.
Accommodation: Rumi Punku (3-star hotel)
Meals: Breakfast (at the hotel)
End of Tour
- All hotels are based on availability. Any changes will be made with your approval.
Professional Guides: All of our guides studied English and tourism at Cusco National University. They all grew up in this region and have a true passion to teach others about their heritage. They are fun yet professional, and will ensure you are safe and happy.
Hotels: 4 nights of hotel are included in this tour. Your first night in Cusco, second night in Ollantaytambo, third night in Aguas Calientes and finally your last night back in Cusco. We can easily add extra nights before or after the tour, if needed. Let our team know if you are interested in extending and we will give you a quote. Rooms are based on double occupancy. There is a surcharge for a single room. Upgraded hotels are always possible. We can also book the tour without any hotels, if you prefer to book them on your own.
Transportation: All your transportation is included on this tour. We will pick you up from your hotel around 1 p.m., on the first morning, and will make sure you are escorted until your are brought back to your hotel, around 8 p.m.the final evening.
Tickets : All entrance fees are included ( BTG boleto turistico for City Tour, Sacred Valley, Machu Picchu fee, roundtrip bus tickets from/to Aguas Calientes).
Train Tickets : Train tickets are in Expeditions tourist class, from Ollantaytambo to Aguas Calientes is at 7.00 pm and from Aguas Calientes to Ollanatyatmbo is at 4.20 pm, if you hoping to upgrade to Vistadome train then is $ 75 one way and $100 round trip, 3.37 pm from Ollantaytambo and 4.43 pm from Agaus Calientes to poroy.
Transfers : No matter which train you take from Machu Picchu to Cusco, the transfer back from train station to your hotel is included
Huayna Picchu: Huayna Picchu is the mountain that stands next to Machu Picchu. It is a 45 minute hike to the top. Going back down is quite steep, if you are scared of heights. This is done without your tour guide, after your tour of Machu Picchu. The cost is $75 per person. Arrangements need to be made at least one month in advance, due to popularity. Please understand that weather is out of our control.
Flights: Flying to Cusco can be tricky. Delays occur often and it is not uncommon for flights to be cancelled. Please be sure to arrive in the city at least two days before your trek start date. LAN Peru is the most reliable of the airlines. Avianca and Peruvian Airlines are acceptable companies, as well. You will not be return from your trek until around 8 p.m. on the last day, so be sure your flight is not until the next day, when leaving Cusco.
Gratuities: Tipping is always appreciated and should be based completely on your satisfaction. Although it may not be customary to you, it is of considerable significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels.
Travel Insurance: This is not required, but always recommended. For those of you who live at sea-level, landing in Cusco will take an adjustment period. Most people need one or two days to adjust. In case you have a hard time adjusting to the altitude, it is suggested to have protection for missed tours.
Meals : Meals are not included but our guides will recommend some good places
We can depart any day of the week, as long as permits are available. Please remember, permits are only needed for your hiking start date.
$1115 Per Person
** Single room supplement: $230 Per Person
$35 Per Student
Student discounts apply to anyone who has a valid UNIVERSITY STUDENT CARD at the time of the trek or who is 17-years-old or younger. For those using an university student card to receive the discount, we need to see a copy of the card at booking. For those booking children 17-years-old or younger, we need a copy of their passport at booking time. Please send all to firstname.lastname@example.org.
More Information about STUDENT CARD
Below is a quick list of prices, but check our Additional Options section for more details.
Huayna Picchu is the mountain that stands next to Machu Picchu. It is a 45 minute hike to the top. While this hike is done on your own, your guide will direct you to where this hike begins. This is an additional entrance ticket that we can secure for you with advance notice.
$75 Per Person
Machu Picchu Mountain:
Machu Picchu mountain is the other mountain that stands above the Machu Picchu ruins. It offers even more stunning views than Huayna Picchu, but takes an hour and a half to reach the top. This is an additional entrance ticket that we can secure for you and must begin between 9-10AM. Because this is during your tour of Machu Picchu, we recommend to only do this hike if you spend a second day at the Machu Picchu citadel.
$75 Per Person
All our tours include the Expeditions (Tourist) Train. This train is normally booked at 4:22 p.m., leaving Aguas Calientes. The Vistadome train is an upgraded train, that offers slightly larger seats, windows and even some entertainment. Normally the Vistadome train is booked for 4:43 p.m. and travels to Poroy, a train station closer to Cusco. While this is an upgraded fee, we will still include your transportation back to your hotel.
$75 Per Person
Getting to Cusco
The airport in Cusco currently is only for domestic flights, so all international travelers by plane must disembark in Lima and go through Customs. Even if your flight to Cusco is the same day by the same airline carrier, you must grab your bags in Lima and then check them back in.
The best way to get to Cusco is by air and there are several options in airlines. LAN tends to be the most expensive, but has the most options and flights. Expect delays or flight cancellations. Due to the high altitude of Cusco, it tends to be difficult to land and any acclimate weather will stop air traffic. Bus travel is always available and while the trip can be long, especially from Lima, the buses in Peru are very well maintained and comfortable. This option is strongly encouraged if coming from a city closer to Cusco, like Puno. Lima buses will take about 20 hours to arrive.
Any extra luggage you have with you can be left safely in Cusco at either your hotel or with us at the Alpaca Expeditions deposit while you trek. We will grab from you the morning of your trek and return once you are back in Cusco. Make sure your bags have some kind of identification on them so they are easy to locate.
As soon as people book their trip to Peru, specifically Cusco, they start wondering about altitude sickness. The air at high altitudes contains less oxygen than at sea level and forces your body to work harder to get the oxygen it needs. Over several days at high altitude, your body adjusts to the lower amount of oxygen in the air. This is why we always recommend spending at least two days in Cusco before beginning any trek. If you have more time, even better. Cusco is an amazing city with a lot to do, so you won’t be bored.
With altitude sickness, you may first feel like you have the flu or a hangover. You may have a headache, tiredness, loss of appetite, nausea or vomiting, dizziness, trouble sleeping, trouble breathing during exercise. If any of these effects become severe, please contact our office and we will help you get to a doctor.
Most of the time, these symptoms will be mild. We always recommend easing into activity slowly, allowing your body to adjust. Drink plenty of fluids such as water or coca tea. Coca tea has been used since ancient times to help prevent altitude sickness. Leaves from the Coca Plant contain alkaloids which helps bring oxygen into your blood, helping your body avoid the effects of altitude sickness. Avoid drinking a lot of alcohol and coffee. They will cause you to urinate more often and become dehydrated. Avoid smoking. Smoking makes it more difficult for your body to get oxygen. Avoid sleeping pills. They may cause shallow breathing at night, making it more difficult for your body to absorb oxygen while you sleep.
Remember the trek to Machu Picchu is not a race. Even those in the best shape will suffer from altitude sickness when they race to the top of the mountain too quickly. Go slowly, it will give your body time to adjust to the mountain.
Your healthcare provider may prescribe medicines, such as acetazolamide and dexamethasone, to help prevent altitude sickness. Start the medicine two days before you get to a high altitude. Continue to take it while you are at high altitude.
You must remember that this is your holiday and you do not want to stress out about the possibility of getting sick from the mountains. Do everything slowly. Drink lots of water. And enjoy the coca tea. If anything does happen and you unfortunately get sick, let your guide know right away – all Alpaca Expeditions guides are trained in how to help you get through it.
Of course weather is unpredictable. Typically the dry season in Cusco is from April through October, but this does not stop rain from falling in June or the sun from coming out in December – just be prepared. No matter what month you are doing the trek, please make sure that you have rain gear that includes a waterproof jacket, pants, poncho and waterproof gloves. Many people forget about gloves, but being cold and wet makes hiking very unpleasant.
Also prepare for four seasons. Many of the treks through the Andes involve many micro-climates and you will need to be prepared for all seasons. Layers are always key as they are easy to adjust to the different temperatures. And evenings will always be cold, so please be prepared with a warm winter-weight jacket.
Every Alpaca Expeditions guide has received training in first aid from a physician. We conduct mandatory training every February – every single Alpaca guide attends. When guiding you, they will have with them a first aid kit for basic medical problems (traveler’s diarrhea, cuts/scrapes, etc.) and oxygen. They know how to make you feel better.
In case something unexpected happens and you feel you can no longer complete the trek, they will figure out the safest and quickest way off the course and to a clinic. You will never be left alone, you will have a member of the team escort you every step of the way until safely with a doctor. When you are feeling up to it, we will make sure that you still have the chance to visit Machu Picchu and re-connect with your group, traveling by train comfortably.
To protect your travel investment, we highly recommend the purchase of travel insurance. Obtaining travel insurance before you leave home is strongly encouraged and very easy. In fact, we work with a great agency in the United States that has helped to make it easy and affordable. This is a great way to protect yourself while visiting Peru.
If interested in booking through our trusted partner, Ahart, Frinzi & Smith, CLICK HERE.
Alpaca Expeditions uses biodegradable soap and transports all our garbage back to Cusco. Our porters are trained to look after the trail and pick up any waste from other groups, as well. We also use environmentally-friendly chemical portable toilets that allow us to pack waste out. We believe in leaving no footprint behind.
Alpaca Expeditions is really proud of the work we do for our community. This is a main focus for our company. We have worked with villages directly to help supply them with needs their families were missing. We have supported local schools by giving them computers and books. We currently sponsor a teacher at the village most of our porters come from to ensure their children are offered the best education.
We buy all our food from local farmers and markets and serve the freshest ingredients. We provide English classes for all our team: guides, porters, chefs and drivers. And we are building a house for our porters to give them a safe and comfortable place to stay before and after our treks so they no longer need to sleep on the floor of a friend.
And twice every year we bring our porters and their families to Machu Picchu. This is our favorite trip to do as the guys who work tirelessly have never visited the Lost Citadel of the Incas. Showing them this place is our biggest honor.
We are always looking to do more for our partners. Please let us know of your ideas and we will work to help.
Personal Porter Included
All of our treks include porters, who are responsible for carrying and setting up all equipment. They will also carry your personal duffel, which you will receive at your briefing the night before your trek. This duffel can not exceed 7 kg/14 lbs, and must include your sleeping bag and an air mattress.
Each Alpaca Expeditions porter is given a proper uniform, salary and insurance. They are the backbone of our company.
- Valid, STUDENT CARD (if you booked as a student)
- Immigration Card (given on the plane as you enter Peru)
- Good daypack (the smaller, the better)
- Water storage: Water reservoir like Camelbaks are encouraged – but enough for at least 2-3 liters.
- Comfortable hiking boots (lightweight with good soles)
FOR YOUR DUFFEL:
Porters will carry up to 7 kg of your personal items. This must include your sleeping bag and air matt (if you bring/rent one). From us these two items weigh 3.5 kg.
- 2-3 wicking t-shirts
- 2-3 hiking pants
- 4 sets of undergarments.
- 4 sets of hiking socks
- 1 Fleece
- 1 Warm, down jacket: gets very cold at night
- 1 Rain jacket and pants
- 1 sun hat
- 1 wool hat
- Headlamp: essential
- Waterproof gloves (even if they are ski gloves, take them)
- Comfortable shoes for camp
- Walking boots
- Waterproof jacket/rain poncho
- Quickdry towel. We provide small ones, you might enjoy something a little larger.
- Small bottle of soap: we provide warm water each day to clean – might make you feel fresh if you had a little soap.
- Battery Charger: There is no place to plug in while trekking!
- Large plastic bags: to help organize and keep clean from dirty.
- Sleeping bag: Recommend down bags for -10C at least
- Face moisturizer
- Bug spray
- Wet wipes
- Toothbrush and paste
- Personal medication
- First aid kit: band aids, moleskin, etc.
INSIDE YOUR DAYPACKS:
Daypacks can be any size for hiking, but we always recommend the smaller, the better. Inside Machu Picchu, no bag larger than 25L will be allowed in. If larger, you will need to store outside citadel gates.
- Water: we supply clean water at each meal. You are responsible for your first morning of water only as we won’t have time to filter water until your first lunch.
- Rain gear
- Music (IPhone)
- Toilet paper and small plastic bag for waste
- Extra Money for Souvenirs, Drinks & Tips
Cusco, Sacred Valley & 2D Inca Trail – 4 Days / 4 Nights
Please fill in our BOOKING FORM carefully with your correct personal details.
The Alpaca Difference
Alpaca Expeditions is a 100% peruvian, indigenous owned company. Started by Raul Ccolque, a former porter and tour guide, Alpaca Expeditions separates ourselves by our dedication to both our customer and our team. We work very hard to make sure that all our clients needs are taken care of throughout the tour with us. At the same time, we never forget about our brothers and sisters working tirelessly for us to make all of this possible. Responsible and sustainable tourism that gives as much to our community as to our clients.
Meet the AE Trekking Team!
Everyone on the Alpaca Team is from Cusco region, living the traditions and history they share with you while on one of our tours. Our guides are all graduates of university studying tourism, history and english. Our chefs are trained every February by a professional cooking team learning new meals, adding varieties of entrees for all types of eating. And all our porters are from HUARQUI, HUACAHUASI, PATACANCHA, QUISWARANI, CANCHACANCHA, QUEYUPAY, UMACHURCO and CCACCACCOLLO villages, very often working this job on top of maining their farms back at home. Most of our team has been with us for years, as we have the most loyal, hard working, happy employees in Cusco. We know how lucky we are to have the best team trekking and you will immediately fall in love with all the men and women who call Alpaca Expeditions their home.
Our Porters represent the Peruvian people, both men, and women who are at the heart of our...
Alpaca Expeditions aims to promote gender equality and empower women, hiring first Peru Wo...
Travelling and trekking along the mountains is one of the best activities in the World. Co...
Trekking along the mountain on your way to conquer Machu Picchu is a once in a lifetime ex...
What do we do for our porters?
Alpaca Expeditions would not be where we are today without these hardworking men and women. We could not imagine a harder job and our team does it smiling. We do our best to thank them for their hard work and loyalty by doing as much as we can to make their lives and their families lives better. All our porters receive all their equipment for free from warm winter hats to proper hiking boots. They sleep in proper tents and are given warm sleeping bags for night. They enjoy the same food we serve our clients and all leftovers are donated to their families. We visit their villages with doctors and dentists, donate school supplies and sports equipment. And our favorite time of the year is when we bring a group of porters and their families to Machu Picchu to visit the ruins for the first time.
Our Porters represent the Peruvian people, both men, and women who are at the heart of our company. It is not possible to ...
Alpaca Expeditions aims to promote gender equality and empower women, hiring first Peru Women as Porters opening the door ...
Free Medical Assistance to Porters
In 2019, we hired our first Alpaca Expeditions Medical Doctor to help tend to our guides, drivers, chefs…
Our Porter’s bus
We treat our porters with the same dignity and respect as we do our clients. Just as our clients enjoy our…
Our Porter’s House
As we mentioned above, our Porters like many Peruvian people come from distant villages to work our treks…
Tents and Sleeping bags
Again, this is something unique that Alpaca Expeditions provides, and sad others are not doing. We supply…
Proper Equipment for our Porters
Every porter of ours receives proper equipment. That includes moisture-wicking long/short sleeve shirts…
Nutritious Meals for our Porters
A general comment from trekkers on an Alpaca Expeditions tour is that we serve too much food. Well…
Alpaca Expeditions is always ready to make your trip safe and as easy as possible for you. Because these trips are a bit more complicated than your typical tour, we have put together some notes on logistics, storage, and even recommendations on where to stay in Cusco. And of course our team is ready to answer any other question, as we promise to be your partner from the moment you first contact us to our last goodbye in Cusco.
Alpaca Expeditions Recognitions
ISO (International Organization for Standardization)
In the pursuit to stand out from the rest, Alpaca Expeditions has obtained four ISOs plus our carbon footprint certificate to date. These achievements result from our efforts to implement the internationally-recognized integrated management system. They also represent our commitment to all of our clients and staff of operating sustainability and responsibility in every way possible.