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Choquequirao and Machu Picchu

from £2499
Combine beautifully diverse trekking with two of the most intriguing Incan ruins on this incredible hiking tour between Choquequirao and Machu Picchu.

Our new trek between Choquequirao and Machu Picchu combines beautifully diverse trekking and visits two of the most intriguing Incan ruins.

We fly to Lima and have time for a morning walking tour before returning to the airport for our flight to Cuzco. At 3400m Cuzco can take a little time to acclimatise to. On arrival plan on sitting in the hotel sipping coca tea rather than running marathons.  Our day to acclimatise will be spent looking around this fascinating city and perhaps some gentle walking in the surrounding countryside.

To start the trek, we drive out to Capuliyoc (2910m) to meet our trekking crew and the mules that will carry everything. Over the next two days we trek through the Apurimac River valley and on to Choquequirao, where we camp the second night. We should arrive in time to have a brief tour of the site in the afternoon and complete our tour the next morning. We will continue up out of the valley to the Choquequirao Pass (3340m) for spectacular views and a picnic lunch.

For the rest of the trek we head through remote country passing villages where life is lived in simple fashion, crossing the San Juan Pass (4150m) and the Totora Pass. At 4665m this is the highest point we reach on the trek. Finally, we reach Aguas Calientes, the village below Machu Picchu. The next morning, first thing, we have a guided tour of Machu Picchu. It entirely justifies its world-renowned status as a tourist attraction, and no one could fail to notice the greater popularity of the site. The contrast between Choquequirao and Machu Picchu could hardly be more pronounced.

We take the train back to Cuzco for our final night before flying back home via Lima.

Holiday Highlights

  • Marvel at Choquequirao, a beautiful and secluded Incan city.
  • Rediscover Machu Picchu, one of the wonders of the world.
  • Experience changing ecosystems from rainforest to alpine.
  • Get off the beaten track on peaceful, remote trails.
The holiday inclusions and exclusions at a glance
What's included in this holiday Items that are covered in the cost of holiday price.

      Return flights from Gatwick to Lima (British Airways) 
      Airport transfers 
      Five nights en suite hotel accommodation 
      Seven nights fully supported tented accommodation 
      Full board on trek, most meals 
      English speaking local guide throughout 
      All local transport costs. 
Whats not included in this holiday Items that are not covered in the cost of holiday price.

  • Entrance fees to some museums and historic buildings (unless otherwise specified)
  • Personal expenses (such as your bar bill)
  • Discretionary tips
  • Optional excursions
  • Insurance
Please select Departure Date to view:

Please see Holiday Information Sheet for this holidays individual departures itinerary (located under View Departures & Book tab)

Whilst every effort will be made to adhere to the outlined itinerary and advertised programme, local conditions can change due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances. This may mean that routes and timings need to be amended or the order of days may change, sometimes at short notice.

This departure: Grade 8

  1. Day 1

    We fly direct from the UK to Lima airport. On arrival in Lima we will meet our Peruvian guide and transfer to the hotel in the Miraflores district of the city.  The transfer might take 45 mins depending on city traffic. Dinner is not included tonight but there are many options for those who would like to eat.

  2. Day 2

    We will have some time in the morning exploring the local area on foot before returning to Lima airport for our flight to Cuzco. On arrival at Cuzco we will transfer to the hotel. Cuzco is at 3300m (11,000ft) so it is important to take things easy to acclimatise. You will be offered a cup of coca tea on arrival in the hotel. It is said to help reduce the effects of altitude. If you find you don’t care for the taste think of it as medicine and drink it anyway. Our local guide will offer further advice about altitude.

  3. Day 3

    Today will be an easy day in and around Cuzco to continue our acclimatisation. There is plenty to see and do in Cuzco to keep us entertained.

  4. Day 4

    Cusco-Capuliyoc (On Bus) -Capuliyoc - Chiquisca (Hike)
    After an early breakfast we will be collected from our hotel for the drive of approx 4 hours to the trail head. On the way we stop at Sayhuite, a pre Colombian archaeological site. for a short visit. We should arrive at Capuliyoc (2,910m) for a late lunch. We start our trek from here and walk down to Chiquisca camp (1900m).
    Distance: 8km/5miles
    Ascent: Minimal
    Descent: 1100m
    Walking Time: 4hrs

  5. Day 5

     After breaking camp, we descend into the spectacular Apurimac river canyon. At first the descent is quite gentle, then it gets steeper and hotter as we go deeper into the canyon to arrive at Playa Rosalina (1500 mts). This takes about an hour. From here we have a long climb out of the canyon to Marampata (2930m) where we have lunch. After lunch we continue to Choquequirao (2860m) and visit the site with our guide. If we are lucky, we might see condors and spectacle bears during the day.  We camp at Choquequirao.
     Distance walked: 14km/9miles
     Ascent: 2190m
     Descent: 1230m
     Walking Time: 8hrs

  6. Day 6

    Choquequirao-Pincha Unuyuc
    This morning after an early breakfast we explore Choquequirao with our expert local guide. The site is larger than Machu Picchu but there are similarities. Choquequirao is an enigmatic, monumental site, built during the mid to late 15th century, it became lost for several centuries as the high jungle in this area covered the ruins. It was re-discovered in 1710 by Europeans but little importance was attached to it. Hiram Bingham brought into the public eye in the early 20th century. After a detailed tour of the site, we continue up to the Choquequirao pass (3340m) for a picnic lunch. After lunch, we continue down to the Rio Blanco valley, to the Inca terraces at Pincha Unuyuc (2100m). Our camp will be close to the terraces.
    Distance walked: 8km/4miles
    Ascent: 530m
    Descent: 900m
    Walking Time: 4-5hrs

  7. Day 7

    Pincha Unuyuc-Maizal
    Leaving Pincha Unuyuc, we go down into deep valley of the Rio Blanco crossing the river on a regular bridge in the rocky bottom of the canyon. On the way we will enjoy the beautiful cloud forest. We camp at Maizal (3000mts).
    Distance walked: 8km/4miles
    Ascent: 1160m
    Descent: 620m
    Walking Time: 6hrs

  8. Day 8

    Maizal-San Juan Pass (4150m)-Yanama
    For some today's walk will be the highlight of the holiday. We climb up to the San Juan pass (4150mts), for lunch. In the afternoon we drop down into the Yanama Valley (3500m) with great views of Panta and Pumasillo's snow-capped peaks, another excellent opportunity to see condors. We camp at Yanama. Walking time approx 7-8 hours.
    Distance walked: 11km/7 miles
    Ascent: 1200m
    Descent: 650m
    Walking Time: 7-8hrs

  9. Day 9

    Yanama - Totora Pass - Mariano Llamuoca (4665m) - Totora
    Today we climb from our campsite to the top of Totora Pass-Mariano Llamuocca (4665mts) which is the highest point we reach on the trek. From here we have amazing views of Salcantay and Humantay peaks to the south. Then we drop down to Totora (3400mts) where we camp. Walking time approx 9 to 10 hours.
    Distance walked: 19km/9miles
    Ascent: 1220m
    Descent: 1400m
    Walking Time: 9-10hrs

  10. Day 10

    Totora - Lucmabamba
    Today we continue our descent through lush cloud forest, full of begonias, orchids and crops like coffee and passion fruit, to Granadichayoc.  From here we will take transportation for 30 minutes to our camp site Lucmabamba (2100m), where we will have our lunch. Walking time approx 5-6 hours.
    Distance walked: 18km/11miles
    Ascent: 730m
    Descent: 1920m
    Walking Time: 5-6hrs

  11. Day 11

    Lucmabamba - Llactapata - Hidroelectrica (Hike), Train Aguas Calientes.
    After breakfast, we start the last day of our trek. We head uphill for 2-3 hours towards Llactapata Pass (2710m), where we come upon a distant but spectacular view of Machu Picchu Sanctuary from the southeast. This is a view few travellers get the chance to admire. We will take a short break to explore the Llactapata Ruins. Lunch is served at a scenic viewpoint, looking out to Machu Picchu. This afternoon, we begin the final descent to the Aobamba River through lush bamboo forests, orchards and coffee plantations. Finally, we will get to Machu Picchu Hydroelectric Power Station, to board the train to Aguas Calientes. Here we stay in a hotel with a few comforts we might have missed during the trek.
    Distance walked: 13km/8miles
    Ascent: 940m
    Descent: 1180m
    Walking Time: 6hrs

  12. Day 12

    Machu Picchu - Train to Ollantaytambo - Bus to Cuzco
    After an early breakfast, we make our way to the bus station for the ride up to Machu Picchu. It takes about 25mins to drive to the entrance of the site. Our local guide will give an introductory two-hour guided tour of the sanctuary. After this we have some free time to explore. We will return by bus to Aguas Calientes for lunch and board the train to Ollantaytambo. From here our private vehicle will drive us back to Cuzco and our hotel. Arrival in Cuzco will be approximately at 7 or 8 pm.

  13. Day 13

    After breakfast we transfer back to Cuzco Airport for our flight back to Lima. Here we connect with the international flight back to the UK.

  14. Day 14

    We arrive back in the UK

Travel Details

  • Return flights from Gatwick to Lima (British Airways) 
  • Airport transfers by road c.45mins
  • Upgrades are available on most flights. For scheduled flights Premium Economy, Business or First Class and most low-cost carriers have extra legroom seats. Please ask us for details and a competitive quote.
  • If direct regional flights are not available, we can often offer add-on flights to a London airport at a competitive rate. Please ask us for details and a competitive quote.

Trip Map

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Our Accommodation on this holiday

Below is the accommodation featured on this holiday. If you are on a multi-centre holiday, these are highlights of the places where we stay. Please refer to your Holiday Information sheet (which can be found under View Departures & Book), for your departure date and for all your accommodation details.

The El Mapi hotel is conveniently located in the village Aguas Calientes close by the town centre and Museum. It is conveniently located for the train station and bus up to Machu Picchu sanctuary. The design is contemporary and welcoming. It is a great place to stay at the end of a hard trek.