The Inca Trail is an iconic path where you get to go through the Andean Mountains while heading to Machu Picchu. If you are going to trek the Inca trail, then you should be prepared. If you are planning on exploring this great trail, here are some things you should expect.
Trek the Inca Trail with These Pointers
Getting into the high altitude will definitely give you altitude sickness. You will find yourself getting out of breath very fast and you might suffer from a mild headache. All these symptoms will pass after some time. It is advisable to rest before beginning the trek to Machu Picchu. The hike takes about four days, but you will have lots of company.
The Inca Trail requires a permit, which limits the people hiking to 500 per day to start. Even crew needs permits! We at Alpaca Expeditions always travel with more porters than trekkers, though, so there is always someone there to help you along. On the first day, you get to cross the Urubamba River and enjoy the magnificent view of the snow-capped peaks.
On the second day is when you will get to go up the Dead Woman’s Pass, which is the highest peak portion of the climb. You rise to an altitude of 4200, and this is where people start slowing down. The large group you started with divides into smaller groups as people trek the Inca Trail at their own pace. Reaching the top of the Dead Woman’s Pass will give you a sense of achievement since most people turn back at this point.
On the third day, the hike will feel more manageable as you will go through two more passes that have been perfectly preserved. You will pass through the Inca tunnel while heading for your final camping site before Machu Picchu. On this day you also visit the best ruins of them all: Winawayna, which is close to the last camping site so you will have plenty of time to explore!
You begin the final trek before sunrise so you can reach the ruins when the sun is coming up. Once you reach the Sun Gate at sunrise, you can see Machu Picchu and all its beauty before you. Once you reach the ruins, you get a chance to celebrate and relax. Note that you can’t shower in the local town unless you stay overnight, so most people head directly back to Cusco which is 4 hours by train/car (2 train, 2 car) and then shower.
To plan your Peru adventure and to learn more about the Inca Trail for yourself, get in touch with Alpaca Expeditions. Alpaca Expeditions is a Peruvian travel operator with a main office in located in Cusco, Peru, and we are the top-rated tour operators of the Inca Trail.