Of course this is our most popular question – what will the weather be like on the trek?
While we can’t answer this specifically, we can give you the general guidelines of weather in this region and on your particular trek.
The most important thing to know is there are only two seasons in Cusco: wet and dry season. The rainy season is from November until March and the dry season is April until October. It doesn’t rainy every day or all day in the rainy season and of course rain can happen during any month – even during the height of the dry season. The key to being happy while visiting us is to be prepared. Rain coat, hat, waterproof gloves and even rain pants for those trekking.
Temperatures don’t fluctuate that much from month to month, but they do change considerably from day to night. During the day in Cusco it will be about 15-20C/60-70F and at night it will drop considerably to about 5C/40F. Warm jackets are required for the evening.
The Sacred Valley and Machu Picchu/Aguas Calientes will be a bit warmer both during the day and night since they are lower in altitude. During the day short sleeves is often most comfortable as it can get really warm sometimes – above 25C/80F, a warm fleece will still be appropriate in the evenings.
Inca Trail (4, 5 and 7 Day versions)
Same guidelines as Cusco – short sleeves is often preferred to hike in. Bring a fleece in your daypack in case the weather changes (and day 2 as you head to Dead Womans Pass it will be even cooler out). And a down jacket is usually preferred for the evenings at your campsite as it can get close to 0C/32C. Each night will warm up with Day 1 being the coldest, Day 2 still cool and Day 3, as you get closer to Machu Picchu and lower in the mountains will be warmer – you might need only a fleece this evening.
2D/1N Inca Trail
Bring a fleece with you for the morning of your hike. This might be the only trek where you don’t need a down jacket as your one night will be in Aguas Calientes where it is considerably warmer.
Salkantay Trek (5 and 4 Day versions)
The first day of this hike has you trekking to your highest (coldest) point so make sure you have that warm jacket for your whole first day. Each day after you will experience warmer and warmer temperatures allowing you to shed some layers.
This is a colder trek as you will be hiking the entire time in higher altitudes. Definitely make sure you have some warm layers to hike and sleep in and a nice warm hat. While you won’t need to hike in your down jacket, a cozy fleece will be really nice during the day and an extra layer for the night.
Another colder hike since its high in the mountains. Maybe our coldest hike – so please be prepared with warm clothes and wind resistant clothes – a windbreaker and those rain pants may come in handy just to keep the wind out.
A beautiful hike through the Sacred Valley. Mornings might be cool, but as the sun rises, so will the heat. Short sleeves are definitely comfortable for this hike and a fleece for the evening.
This hike will fluctuate as the Inca Trail from day to night. Be prepared with layers. Hiking in short sleeves will be comfortable often, but weather can change quickly and you will want a fleece to be in your backpack for when that happens. Bring a down jacket for the night as it can hit that freezing temperature again.