sacred valley and short inca trail

Sacred Valley Tour 1 Day
& Inca Trail Hike 2D/1N


Trip Overview

Tour Location: Sacred Valley, Inca Trail.
Tour Type: Trekking/Hiking, cultural, adventurous
Good For: Those in moderate shape, families.
Difficulty: Moderate. It’s not a technical hike but the altitude may affect some individuals.
Consideration: Permit is required, but a separate permit process for the 4 day hike and generally available with little notice.
Season: Opened March through January. Closed February
Campsite: Our private campsite is only for Alpaca trekkers and includes a well deserved hot shower and areas to charge batteries/phones.

Why Book Inca Trail Trek with us
New!
Tour Price
& Inca Trail Hike 2D/1N
Sacred Valley Tour 1 Day

Price from $ 1,000 USD Per Person

Reduced group sizes to 8 max.
Normal times 16 max

Trip Details


    Highlights

  1. Highlights

    Stretched across two days with six hours hiking along the famous Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, is the short Inca Trail hike. Start your first day with a four-hour hike gradually uphill to Winawayna ruins, a beautiful spot for your lunch. From there, its one more hour to the Sun Gate where you will see Machu Picchu for the first time. You won’t head into the ruins on your first day, instead, you will go to your campsite, which is closer to the town of Aguas Calientes. Enjoy another meal by your amazing trekking chef and then sleep under the stars. The next morning you will go inside Machu Picchu for your tour of the marvelous ruins.

  2. Itinerary Overview

    • Day 1: Sacred Valley Tour
    • Day 2: Inca Trail – Sun Gate – Machu Picchu (Walking Distance: 15 km / 8 miles)
    • Day 3: Machu Picchu! (You will be back in Cusco around 8:30 PM)
  3. Special Offers

    Add Rainbow Mountain: $150 US

    Enjoy a full-day hike to the striped mountain at a very special rate. This can be done before or after your Inca Trail, arrange with your sales team member.

    machu picchu map alpaca expeditions

Itinerary

  1. Day 1: Sacred Valley Tour

    Your Sacred Valley Tour begins at 8 a.m. when your guide will pick you up from your hotel lobby. You will be taken on a road that winds around the mountains north of Cusco. On the way, we will stop at a famous point known as El Mirador (Lookout Point). From there, we will be able to see the Sacred Valley and gain some insight into the Inca history. The Sacred Valley was one of the main areas the Incas settled. There is an unusual abundance of fertile plains in this high area of the Andes. You will also witness vast contour terracing and irrigation channels left behind by the Incas.

    Later on, we will drive towards the ruins of Pisac. Here, you will witness and learn about the Inca culture. You will see amazing works of stone art and impressive agricultural terraces. After exploring, we will drive back to the lower town of Pisac to stop at a bustling handicraft market. After you spend some time walking around the market bargain hunting, we will meet for lunch at a local Andean restaurant.

    After lunch, we will drive along the Urubamba River towards the town of Ollantaytambo. Once we reach Ollantaytambo, we will visit the ruins, an important area of Incan construction, built during the Inca’s heydays. This is an extraordinary Inca site because you can find rock formations representing the Inca god, Wiracocha. Afterwards, we will return to Cusco and drop you off at your hotel.

  2. Day 2: Inca Trail – Sun Gate – Machu Picchu

    You will be picked up for your short Inca trail hike from your hotel at 4 a.m. Following, we will go to the train station and leave on the 6:10 a.m. train from Ollantaytambo. Being one of the most magnificent trains to ride in the world, with its phenomenal views of the rough-and-tumble Urubamba River, the soaring snow-capped mountain peaks, and cornfield farms. As we descend, you will see the micro-climate changes, from the mountains and cornfields to green jungle valleys with ferns, bromeliads, and orchids, as the temperature starts to get warmer. This train ride is one hour and 45 minutes to Km 104, where we’ll disembark to meet your trekking chef and porters. You 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 have some time to prepare before beginning the hike. Soon after, we will get to explore the first Inca site, Chachabamaba. Chachabamaba was the first ancient Incan checkpoint for entering to the Inca trail. Your tour guide will give you some background history on this ruin, followed by the three-hour climb up to the most famous Inca site along the trail, Wiñay Wayna. You will see amazing views of Machu Picchu Valley and the Urubamba River along the trail, as well as the flora/fauna native to the area. There are also waterfalls and spectacular views of Machu Picchu Mountain. 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. Once you arrive at the Wiñay Wayna Inca site, you will have time for a tour by your tour guide. He will also provide time for exploring the Inca site, temples, waterfalls, gardens, storehouses, watchtowers, and farming terraces. Only a short walk to the lunch spot where your trekking chef and porters will be ready, with cold drinks and delicious fresh food prepared by our cook and served buffet-style. After lunch, there will be time for a short nap. Then, it will be a one hour gradual up and downhill hike to get to the Sun Gate. There you will have spectacular views of Machu Picchu, Huayna Picchu, and the surrounding valleys. The Sun Gate was used by Incas to observe the sunrise from Machu Picchu during the summer solstice. From here, it is another hour hike to the Machu Picchu ruins. Once in Machu Picchu, you can explore the watchtower area where you can get charming pictures of Machu Picchu (without crowds). We’ll then take the 20-minute bus ride to the campsite of Puente Ruinas. When you arrive at the campsite, your tents will be all set up. You will meet your porters, and enjoy a social happy hour with hot drinks and dinner. Later in the evening, we’ll have a small ceremony with your chef and porters for your last night with them. They will still be there the next morning to cook breakfast and for a proper goodbye.

    * This hiking route is identical to our 2 Day Inca Trail with Hotel.

    Highlight: Trekking the Inca Trail, enjoying the views from the Sun Gate, sunset views from Machu Picchu, camping at the foot of Machu Picchu

    Walking Distance: 15 km / 8 miles
    Meals: Included
    Elevations: Trek starting point 2,000 m, the highest point is Sun Gate 2,720 m, the camp is at 1,900 m
    Weather: Hot and humid

  3. Day 3: Machu Picchu (The Lost City of the Incas) & Return to Cusco

    There will be an early wake-up call with hot drinks. You will have time to prepare your duffel bags and day packs and enjoy breakfast. We’ll walk 30 minutes to the bus station to be one of the first in line to go up to Machu Picchu (sometimes there is a 20-30 min wait in the line to board the bus). The first buses will depart at 5:30 a.m. and arrive at 6:00 a.m., into Machu Picchu. You must have your original passport at the checkpoint. Your tour guide will take you to the perfect spot to enjoy the sunrise over the mountains (weather permitting). We’ll then have a two hour, private, guided tour of the Machu Picchu ruins, with all of its fascinating history. You’ll also have free time to explore Machu Picchu on your own. If you have booked a permit to climb Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain, you will start at 10:00 a.m. However, there are a lot of other things to see around Machu Picchu. There is the Inca Bridge, the Sun Gate, or you can walk around the temple and residential areas of Machu Picchu and mingle with the llamas. You will need to catch your bus back down to the town of Aguas Calientes for lunch and train to Ollantaytambo. From there, you will go by private van back to Cusco, where we will drop you off at your hotel.

    Highlight: Arrive early to Machu Picchu to enjoy the sunrise
    Temperature: Warm and humid
    Meals: Breakfast Only
    Train: Expedition tourist class

Inclusions

  1. Included

    • Professional Guides: All of our guides studied English and tourism at Cusco National University. They all grew up in the Cusco region, and are committed to teaching others about their heritage. They are fun yet professional and will ensure you are safe and happy.
    • Permits: As soon as we receive your details and deposit, we will purchase your permits (pending availability, check our Inca Trail Availability). These permits are for a specific date and in your name. They can´t be changed once confirmed. Only your passport number is allowed to be updated. The permit includes an entrance to Machu Picchu.
    • Briefing: The night before your trek, you will come to our office for your briefing. You will receive your duffel bag that will stay with your porters while you hike. This bag should not exceed 7kg/14 lbs and does need to include your sleeping bag and air mattress.
    • Porters: We include a personal porter who is responsible for carrying your duffel bag. There is no additional fee for this. You will not have access to your duffel bag until your evening campsite.
    • Transportation: You will have transportation included in this trek. You will be picked up directly from your hotel around 4 a.m. (unless you are staying in Ollantaytambo) and brought to KM 82 to begin your trek. Also included will be the Expedition Train from Aguas Calientes. You may also upgrade to the Vistadome Train for $75 per person. Once you arrive at the train station, we will take you back to your hotel in Cusco. Additionally, your round trip bus ticket from Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu will be included.
    • Equipment: Alpaca Expeditions has the best equipment. We use Eureka Timberline 4 person tents that are shared by only two people. You will also have a spacious dining tent to enjoy your meals in.
    • Food: The Alpaca Expeditions chefs cook delicious meals that many previous trekkers have loved. We honor all food restrictions, so be sure to add any that you have on your booking form and let your guide know at your briefing. Food is typically all served family-style.
    • You will enjoy breakfast, lunch, and dinner each day for the trek along with a happy hour of tea and snacks. A snack will be provided each morning for you to enjoy along the hike. Your last meal with your chef will be after breakfast on day four. Lunch the last day is not included.
    • Water: Beginning from your first lunch until your last breakfast, Alpaca Expeditions will supply all the water needed. This water is boiled, filtered, and then cooled before distributing. You must bring personal water bottles and or a camelback. We recommend carrying about 3L worth. You will be able to refill your water at each meal.
    • First Aid: Every Alpaca Expeditions guide has received training in first aid from a physician. We conduct mandatory training sessions every February, which every single Alpaca tour guide must attend. Your tour guide will always have a first-aid kit for basic medical situations (traveler´s diarrhea, cuts, scrapes, etc.) and oxygen. We will get you off the trail as quickly and comfortably as possible if needed, and ensure you get directly to a clinic for treatment.
    • Extras: We believe it´s the attention to small details that separates us from other tour companies. Every trekker receives a small pillow to sleep with, a foam mattress for insulation, a day pack cover to protect their things while hiking, and a rain poncho. We will work hard to create your best vacation.
    • Satellite Phones: Our top priority will always be the safety of our clients and our team. While all our guides are prepared and trained to deal with most issues clients have on the mountain. Being a phone call away from any doctor, hospital, or friend helps everyone feel assured that they are safe. Radios, which all our guides have, are limited in how far they can reach, so Alpaca Expeditions has added Satellite Phones to every trek. Every guide will have a fully charged phone that can be used anywhere on the mountain to connect us anywhere in the world. And they can be used by our clients for non-emergencies as well. While they are not cheap to use, they are available just in case you need to check in on the puppy you left at home with grandma.
    • Rentals: Every trekker needs a sleeping bag when camping. Inflatable air mattresses and walking sticks (with rubber tips) are optional but encouraged. If you don’t want to bring any of the above, they are all available for rent:Sleeping Bag: $15
      Inflatable Air Mattress: $10
      Walking Sticks (Pair): $10
    • 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. You would do this after your tour of Machu Picchu. The cost is $75. Arrangements need to be made at least one month in advance due to popularity. Please understand that the weather is out of our control.

Price

  1. Group Price

    We can depart any day of the week, as long as permits are available. Please remember, permits are only needed for your start date.

    $1,000 per person

  2. Private Tours are based on Group Size

    Two trekkers: $1,260
    Three trekkers: $1,160
    Four trekkers: $1,010
    Five trekkers: $960
    Six trekkers: $900
    Seven trekkers: $860
    Eight, or more Trekkers: $840

  3. Student or Under 17 Discount

    $25 off per person

    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 a University Student Card our under 17-years-old, we need to see a copy of their card or passport at the time of booking to receive the discount.

    Please send all to info@alpacaexpeditions.com.

    More Information about STUDENT CARD

  4. Additional Items

    As you see in our Additional Options, there are several optional upgrades you can include in this trip. Below is a quick list of prices:

  5. Huayna Picchu

    Huayna Picchu is the mountain that stands next to Machu Picchu. It is a 45-minute hike to the top. Even when you will do this hike on your own, your guide will still show you the trail entrance. This trek is an additional entrance ticket that we can secure for you with advance notice. 

    Your tickets will be purchased to coincide with when you need to start the trail. Tickets are either for the First Session from 7-8 AM or Second Session from 10-11 AM. We purchase the Second Session for our clients for you to enjoy your tour of Machu Picchu before you begin. This window is only your start time, and you may take your time up and down, so no rush.

    The ticket is $75 per person.

  6. 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. For this trek, it will be an additional entrance ticket that we can secure for you.

    This ticket is $75 per person.

  7. Vistadome Train

    All our tours include the Expedition Train. This train is usually booked at 4:22 p.m., leaving from Aguas Calientes. The Vistadome Train is an upgraded train that offers slightly larger seats, windows, and even some entertainment. Usually, 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.

    This train is $75 per person.

Travel Info

  1. Huayna Picchu

    Huayna Picchu is the mountain that stands next to Machu Picchu. It is a 45-minute hike to the top. Even when you will do this hike on your own, your guide will still show you the trail entrance. This trek is an additional entrance ticket that we can secure for you with advance notice. 

    The ticket is $75 per person.

  2. 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. For this trek, it will be an additional entrance ticket that we can secure for you.

    This ticket is $75 per person.

  3. Vistadome Train

    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.

    This train is $75 per person.

Packing List

  1. ESSENTIALS

    • Passport
    • 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)
  2. 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.

    • 1 wicking t-shirt, 1 shirt for Machu Picchu (that you want to see in photos
    • 1 hiking pant, 1 short or pants for Machu Picchu
    • 2 sets of undergarments.
    • Hiking socks, regular socks
    • 1 Fleece
    • 1 Warm, down jacket: gets very cold at night
    • 1 Rain jacket and pants
    • 1 sun hat
    • Headlamp: essential
    • Waterproof gloves (even if they are ski gloves, take them)
    • Comfortable shoes for camp
    • 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.
    • Large plastic bags: to help organize and keep clean from dirty.
    • Sleeping bag: Recommend down bags for -10C at least
  3. TOILETRIES

    • Sunscreen
    • Face moisturizer
    • Bug spray
    • Handsanitizer
    • Wet wipes
    • Toothbrush and paste
    • Toiletpaper
    • Personal medication
    • First aid kit: band aids, moleskin, etc.
  4. 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.
    • Sunhat
    • Rain gear
    • Fleece
    • Camera
    • Music (IPhone)
    • Handsanitizer
    • Toilet paper and small plastic bag for waste
    • Extra Money for Souvenirs, Drinks & Tips
    • Earplugs

Faqs

PREPARING FOR YOUR TRIP

  1. PREPARING FOR YOUR TRIP

  2. BOOKING

    We try to make booking as easy as possible at Alpaca Expeditions. We need a completed booking form that includes all the details for the entire party (on one form, please) and then a $200 deposit per person. The deposits can be paid separately as long as we have one form that we can use to track payments. Once we have all deposits and details, we will then book your permits. When permits are in our hands, we will send you your invoice and confirmation that everything is 100% set. All start dates, once confirmed, are guaranteed.

  3. PERMITS

    Only licensed Inca Trail tour operators, like Alpaca Expeditions, can secure permits from the government. Once we have secured your permit, the name and start date can not be changed under any circumstance. The only information that the government allows us to change is passport numbers.

  4. UPDATING PASSPORT NUMBERS

    The government will only allow us to change passport numbers if we have a copy of the new passport and old passport. If you no longer have your old passport, any government issue ID will be accepted, as long as the name is the same. Also, make sure your passport does not expire six months or less from your trip.

  5. HOW TO GET TO CUSCO

    Most people will get to Cusco by air. Please remember that the Cusco airport is for domestic travel only. If you come directly from overseas through Lima, you must get your bags in Lima and re-check them for your flight to Cusco. Four airline carriers fly roundtrip between Lima and Cusco. That includes LATAM Airlines, AVIANCA Airlines, Star Peru, and Peruvian Airlines. They all offer similar schedules and in-flight service, but we usually recommend either LATAM airlines or AVIANCA. They tend to be the most helpful when unexpected flight cancellations or delays occur.

  6. WHERE TO STAY IN CUSCO

    While you can stay at any hotel in Cusco, the city is becoming more challenging to navigate by car. Many roads, especially near the main square, are open to pedestrian traffic only. We will notify you if it is not possible to pick you up by car and arrange another meeting point for pick up/drop off. For a list of recommended hotels, please ask your Alpaca Expeditions sales rep.

  7. CAN I STAY IN THE SACRED VALLEY

    Ollantaytambo is the best place to stay other than Cusco. By staying in Ollantaytambo, you get a little more sleep, because we will pick you up about 1.5 hours after the Cusco pick up time. You can only have your briefing in Cusco. So please arrange a time that works for you and our office team with your Alpaca Expeditions sales rep.

  8. CAN I SPEND AN EXTRA NIGHT IN AGUAS CALIENTES

    Of course, if you are ok with taking the same train out of Aguas Calientes that is part of your original itinerary, which is typically at 4:22 that evening than there is no additional charge to move the train back a day. If you need us to secure your hotel or another visit to Machu Picchu, this will be an additional cost. If you do choose to spend one more night in Aguas Calientes, make sure you tell the Alpaca Expeditions office at least one month in advance, so your train ticket is purchased for the right day.

  9. CAN I BOOK MY OWN HOTEL IN AGUAS CALIENTES

    You can choose any hotel to stay in Aguas Calientes. It’s a small town, and you absolutely can book on your own. It will reduce the price of your trek $40 per person. If you choose to book your hotel, make sure you tell us where you plan on staying so we can get you there safely.

  10. DURING YOUR TRIP

  11. HOW CHALLENGING IS THE TREK

    Remember that even though this tour is 2 days, you are only hiking for one day 6 hours total which includes some stops. The morning is mostly gradually uphill the entire time, so it will be tiring, but well worth it when you get to Winawayna for lunchtime. Just remember its one foot in front of the other, look up at the amazing views and enjoy it. After lunch its an hour to the Sun Gate, pretty easy. And then another easy hike to your campsite.

  12. DO YOU NEED HIKING BOOTS

    We always recommend light hiking boots, but if you prefer sneakers, especially for the one day hike, this is ok as well. Just please make sure they have good soles.

  13. WHAT SHOULD I PACK

    Probably the most important question. While you will find a complete packing list on the site, remember on this particular hike you carry all your own things. Please pack as light as possible. Only essentials.

  14. WHERE DO I STORE MY LUGGAGE

    All luggage not needed for the trek should stay in Cusco. All hotels are very accommodating and quite used to storing luggage on-site, or you can safely store with the Alpaca Expeditions team.

  15. WHAT SHOULD I EXPECT AS FAR AS WEATHER

    Please understand that this is an impossible question for us to answer. Historically April through September is the dry season, November through February is the rainy season and March and October and bridge months – a mixture of both. But the clouds have not followed these rules in the last few years. Prepare for sun and rain no matter when you come. As far as temperatures go, that is consistent throughout the year. Mornings and evenings are always cold. Make sure to bring a fleece jacket for the mornings and a down jacket for the evenings. Once the sun is up, you should be comfortable hiking and touring Machu Picchu in short sleeves. Long pants (yoga or hiking) are encouraged to help from the mosquitos, which can be a nuisance in Aguas Calientes.

  16. WHAT TYPE OF OUTLETS ARE USED IN PERU

    Most hotels and even homes in Peru now have the standard US outlet and also the South American outlet.

Sacred Valley Tour 1 Day & Inca Trail Hike 2D/1N

Please fill in our BOOKING FORM carefully with your correct personal details.

The Alpaca Difference


Experience the famous Inca Trail for 4 amazing days, and pass through the Sun Gate at sunrise for that first magical sighting of Machu Picchu! The Inca Trail is Peru's own microcosm; lush green cloud forest alive with wildlife, Andean mountain passes, a vast landscape dotted with ruins from the Inca civilization... and it's accessible only to those that follow this famous pathway. This is the most popular trek for hiking the Inca Trail.

Meet the AE Trekking Team!


Experience the famous Inca Trail for 4 amazing days, and pass through the Sun Gate at sunrise for that first magical sighting of Machu Picchu! The Inca Trail is Peru's own microcosm; lush green cloud forest alive with wildlife, Andean mountain passes, a vast landscape dotted with ruins from the Inca civilization... and it's accessible only to those that follow this famous pathway. This is the most popular trek for hiking the Inca Trail.

Our Porter The Green Machine Alpaca Expeditions
Alpaca Expeditions Hike Like a Girl
Alpaca Expeditions Guides
Our Cooks

What do we do for our porters?


Experience the famous Inca Trail for 4 amazing days, and pass through the Sun Gate at sunrise for that first magical sighting of Machu Picchu! The Inca Trail is Peru's own microcosm; lush green cloud forest alive with wildlife, Andean mountain passes, a vast landscape dotted with ruins from the Inca civilization... and it's accessible only to those that follow this famous pathway. This is the most popular trek for hiking the Inca Trail

Our Porter The Green Machine Alpaca Expeditions
Alpaca Expeditions Hike Like a Girl

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...

Extra information


Experience the famous Inca Trail for 4 amazing days, and pass through the Sun Gate at sunrise for that first magical sighting of Machu Picchu! The Inca Trail is Peru's own microcosm; lush green cloud forest alive with wildlife, Andean mountain passes, a vast landscape dotted with ruins from the Inca civilization... and it's accessible only to those that follow this famous pathway. This is the most popular trek for hiking the Inca Trail.

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TRIPADVISOR RECOGNITIONS


Our goal at Alpaca Expeditions is to create the best experience for all of our clients. We create journeys that are to be remembered for a lifetime. Journeys you can be proud of and can share with everybody around you.