The Sacred Valley and Lares Adventure to Machu Picchu is a 5 or 7 day lodge-to-lodge journey through the rich history, living culture and magnificent landscape of Cusco and the Sacred Valley of the Incas.
Majestic archaeological sites lead to remote and uncrowded trails taking travelers through mountains and valleys, abounding in natural beauty and dotted with Andean communities, where the locals are master weavers and their traditions are still firmly rooted in ancient Incan culture.
Expert guides tailor the experience with an offer of à la carte activities and daily cultural encounters. At each day’s sunset, settle into deluxe mountain lodges run in partnership with local communities, to prepare for a new day of multi-activity adventure and exploration.
Lost World Adventures itineraries can be tailor-made according to your plans and preferences: budget, hotel selections, travel dates, optional excursions, length of trip, etc.
The town square is often the center of activity throughout this region, but so too is the town market, and none is more alive than the famous market at Pisaq. A morning visit to check out its unique array of products will inspire you with a small taste of the rich culture yet to be explored on your journey.
Travelers seeking inspiration in nature can opt for an invigorating morning hike surrounded by amazing views of the Andes Mountains that guard this magnificent valley. Later, enjoy exclusive access to the isolated community of Viacha, where you will learn about its artisanal potato farming practices and enjoy a traditional “Pachamanca” meal, cooked under hot stones.
After lunch you will visit the archaeological complex at Pisaq, an afternoon excursion that offers a unique opportunity to explore the complex free of crowds, with the sun setting behind the peaks.
Overnight: Lamay Lodge (9,705ft/2,958m), located in the town of Lamay, in the Sacred Valley of the Incas.
Activity Menu (morning to noon):
Cultural activity: Visit Awanakancha (an Andean camelid exhibition and traditional textile center), the town of Pisaq and local market, and experience an encounter with members of the local community of Viacha.
Hike: From the local community of Amaru to the local community of Viacha / Duration 2.5-3 hrs. / Moderate / Mountain pass at an elevation of 14,200´ - 4,328m.
Group Activity: Group lunch at the local community of Viacha. In the afternoon, the whole group visits the Pisaq archeological site together, before heading to the lodge.
Now that you have gotten a glimpse of the rich Andean tapestry, today you will have the opportunity to go even deeper with an exploration into the heart of the Lares Valley. A scenic drive into the mountains, along the celebrated “Inca Weaver’s Trail”, allows you to visit the unique and uncrowded archaeological site of Ancasmarca along the hub-town of Lares.
After lunch, you can choose between visiting the traditional and ancient weavers’ village of Choquecancha, or opt for hiking amidst turquoise blue lakes and towering peaks to the remote village of Huacahuasi, where we all meet to spend the night.
The lodge, which is run in joint venture with the local community and aims to protect the cultural heritage and the environment, provides an interesting insight into the evolving role of the original Andean people in both the culture and commerce of modern-day Cusco.
Overnight: Huacahuasi Lodge (12,585ft/3,835m), located in the local community of Huacahuasi, in the Lares Region.
Group Activity (morning to noon): In the morning, briefly explore the town of Lamay and visit the archaeological site of Ancasmarca. Group lunch at the town of Lares.
Activity Menu (afternoon, after the group visit):
Cultural activity: Visit the town of Choquecancha, meet with local weavers and visit the old church.
Hike: From Quelquena to Huacahuasi / Duration 2-2.5 hrs. / Easy to moderate / Mountain pass at an elevation of 12,595´- 3,839 m.
Hike: From Cuncani to Huacahuasi / Duration 3.5-4 hrs. / Moderate / Mountain pass at an elevation of 13,838ft/4,219m.
Spend some time in the morning learning more about the heritage and day-to-day activities of the Huacahuasi community.
Then, you can choose to embark on a spectacular hike through varied terrain and over a high pass, to the adjacent valley leading to the ancient town of Ollantaytambo, the oldest living city in Latin America; or try a 2 in 1 activity, hiking from Lares Pass to the Local Community of Totora after an incredible biking tour from Huacahuasi to the town of Lares.
If you prefer to see more of the Sacred Valley, you can drive back for a visit to an ethnographic museum featuring the history of Peru’s rich civilizations of the past or choose to explore the valley on mountain bike. Afterwards, enjoy lunch in the Urubamba River countryside on your way to Ollantaytambo, where you can spend time meandering through its charming maze-like streets.
Overnight: Hotel in the Sacred Valley of the Incas (9,284ft/2,830m).
Activity Menu (all day):
Cultural activity: Drive back to the Sacred Valley of the Incas, visit a local farmer’s market and a Pre- Inca and Inca cultural museum. Enjoy lunch at a countryside restaurant and in the afternoon explore the town of Ollantaytambo.
Bike and hike activity: Bike from Huacahuasi to Lares town/ Duration 1 hr. / Easy to moderate/ and then embark to a beautiful hike from Lares pass to the village of Totora / Duration 3 hrs. / Easy to moderate. Enjoy lunch at a countryside restaurant.
Hike: From Huacahuasi to Patacancha / Duration 7 hrs. / Moderate to challenging / Mountain pass at an elevation of 14,646ft/4,464m. Lunch at Ipsaycocha lake. Afternoon arrival in Ollantaytambo.
Optional bike excursion (afternoon): Drive back and explore the Sacred Valley of the Incas on mountain bike / Duration 2 hrs. / Easy to moderate. Enjoy a visit to an artisanal brewery in which many of their beers are made with local products (this activity has an additional cost).
From its beginnings as the royal estate of Inca-Emperor Pachacutec, to a stronghold against the Spanish conquistadors for Manco Inca Yupanqui, the temple at Ollantaytambo was regarded by the Incas as one of their most important ceremonial centers.
On this day, an optional and short early morning hike to Inca storage structures high above Ollantaytambo will give you a magnificent view of the town as well as of the main archaeological site across the valley.
Afterwards, as your guide leads you through a morning tour of the temple and explains its strategic architectural planning, you will also get a sense of its mystical history…a perfect introduction to the wonder of Machu Picchu.
Around noon you will embark on a scenic train ride along the famous Urubamba River to Aguas Calientes, the town below Machu Picchu, whose charm lies in a history that began as a small railway stop and evolved into a bustling town still bisected by the train tracks.
Overnight: Hotel in Aguas Calientes town (6,232ft/1,900m), located in the base town of Machu Picchu.
Activity Menu (early morning, before the group activity):
Hike: Lower Pinkuylluna mountain above Ollantaytambo / Duration 1-1.5 hrs. / Moderate.
Hike: Higher Pinkuylluna mountain above Ollantaytambo / Duration 2-2.5 hrs. / Moderate to challenging.
Group Activity: In the morning, after the optional early morning activities, explore the archeological site of Ollantaytambo, before boarding the train to the town of Machu Picchu (Aguas Calientes).
At dawn, you begin your journey to Machu Picchu with a short and rollicking uphill bus ride. As you enter the “Sanctuary” (as locals refer to it), the morning sun rises over the iconic Sun Gate and washes the structures and terraces with resplendent light.
Prepare to be awed by the imposing and skillful architecture of the Watchtower, the Temple of the Sun, and the royal Inca residences, among many others. Take a moment to quietly sit and listen to the wind…or to meditate and absorb the mystical energy that envelops you.
Your imagination will soar as you contemplate the history of Machu Picchu and its mysterious origins. Some may even choose a hike to Huayna Picchu, the iconic towering mountain often seen in photographs, for dramatic views that stretch from the Urubamba River valley to the edge of the Amazon jungle.
Either way, you will be touched by a feeling of peace and rejuvenation which will linger even as you journey back to the city lights, and hustle and bustle of Cusco.
Group Activity: Early in the morning visit the Inca citadel of Machu Picchu.
Activity Menu (late morning, after the group activity):
Cultural activity: Free time to explore the Inca citadel of Machu Picchu (7,872ft/2,400m).
Hike: Guided hike of Huayna Picchu mountain / Duration 2-2.5 hrs. / Moderate to challenging / Mountain pass at an elevation of 8,924ft/2,720m
Note: Huayna Picchu mountain tickets are subject to availability.
|Price from||$2,400.00 per person, based on double occupancy|
We were very pleased with the trip, accommodations, pickups were always on time, the guides were the best, knowledgeable of the history,culture and historical sites.
- Rob B, March 2015