Very early, as the sun begins to shine in the city of Cusco, a Quechua-speaking guide will pick you up from your hotel to head out in the direction of the Sacred Valley. Calca market will be the last stop before losing contact with the big cities. This is your last chance to buy any last minute things you may need for the trip. The road that leads to Lares crosses the Amparaes pass at 4,470 meters above sea level and continues through arid landscapes with occasional waterfalls running through the road. The final destination: the hot baths of Lares. Here, naturally occurring, relaxing thermal waters await for you before your trek.
If the day is clear, you will wake up to the imposing view of Colque Cruz, a majestic mountain that provides water to the community. Follow the road next to the little stream that will take you towards the pass. The ascent is challenging. Expect some hours of demanding but rewarding ascent, with rocky paths, as well as incredible landscapes and lagoons. As getting closer to the pass, the trail becomes steeper and rockier. Off in the distance, a stunning view of the Pampas of Anta awaits on reaching the summit, followed by a descent that will be most agreeable after such a long climb to the top! The descent is steep but beautiful while crossing the small forest of ‘Polylepis’, the endemic but endangered trees of the high Andes. The drop continues until you reach your camp, a small paradise, surrounded by trees and crossed by a small creek. Tonight, if found some dead wood, you will enjoy a campfire.
From here the trail becomes easier down to the piscigranja (fish farm). You will feel the climate changing, becoming warmer and wilder, hummingbirds and other birds accompany us on our journey. After a few short hours, a private transportation that will take you to Ollantaytambo station to board the train to Aguas Calientes. As the train travels along, the valley turns into a canyon and the scenery alters, as the cloud forest begins to appear, on our approach to the Machu Picchu Sanctuary. The train disembark will be at Aguas Calientes.
Really early this morning, with your guide, you'll take a 25-minute bus ride to the sanctuary of Machu Picchu (2,400 m). Your guide will lead you in your exploration and discovery of the many curious corners within the enigmatic Citadel of Machu Picchu. The guided tour will have an average duration of 2 hours. Afterwards, you will still have some time to visit other places that you did not visit with your guide.