Cusco 4 Day Itinerary: Machu Picchu + Sacred Valley + Rainbow Mountain + Humantay Lake

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Tour typeCultural
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Group sizeMax 8 Persons
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LanguageEnglish, Spanish
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Best timeAll year round
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DifficultyChallenging
Xplore Cusco Duration icon
Duration4 Days

Overview

Embark on an unforgettable Cusco 4-day itinerary with Xplore Cusco, your local travel agency specializing in personalized cultural experiences. Discover the best of Cusco through captivating highlights, including exploring the Sacred Valley, uncovering the mysteries of Machu Picchu, immersing yourself in the serenity of Humantay Lake, and conquering the vibrant Rainbow Mountain. Our thoughtfully curated tour ensures a seamless blend of heritage and adventure, offering an authentic journey through the heart of Peru’s rich landscapes and history. Join us for an expertly guided exploration that promises memories to cherish for a lifetime.

Highlights

  • Immersive Exploration: Dive into the heart of Cusco’s culture with our 4-day itinerary, curated for an in-depth and immersive experience of the region’s most iconic destinations.
  • Sacred Valley Wonders: Venture into the captivating Sacred Valley, where you’ll have the choice to explore either Maras and its unique salt terraces or the bustling markets of Pisaq. Immerse yourself in indigenous traditions and crafts, connecting with the local way of life.
  • Machu Picchu Mystique: Unlock the enigmatic allure of Machu Picchu, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Our expert guides will lead you through the ancient ruins, unraveling their historical significance and providing insights into the lives of the Inca civilization.
  • Serene Humantay Lake: Experience tranquility at its finest as you journey to Humantay Lake, nestled in the breathtaking Andean highlands. Trek through diverse landscapes, encountering local flora and fauna, before being rewarded with the serene turquoise waters of the lake against a backdrop of majestic peaks.
  • Rainbow Mountain Adventure: Conquer the vibrant Rainbow Mountain, a natural wonder that boasts a stunning palette of colors. Embark on an early morning trek, taking in the awe-inspiring panoramic views from the summit, a reward that showcases the beauty of the Andean highlands.
  • Expert Local Guides: Benefit from the knowledge and passion of our local guides who are deeply connected to the culture and history of the region. Their insights will enrich your journey, providing a genuine understanding of the destinations you’ll explore.
  • Personalized Group Experiences: As part of Xplore Cusco’s commitment to personalized travel, our small group sizes ensure intimate interactions, allowing you to fully engage with the local culture and your fellow travelers.
  • Lasting Memories: Capture the essence of Cusco with every step, from the iconic vistas of Machu Picchu to the serene shores of Humantay Lake. Create cherished memories that will stay with you long after your journey ends.

Included

Xplore Cusco Tickets icon
TicketsMachu Picchu Ticket (Circuit 2) + Rainbow Mountain and Humantay Lake tickets
Xplore Cusco Train Tickets icon
Train TicketsExpedition train ticket from Machu Picchu to Ollantaytambo
Xplore Cusco Guide icon
GuideEnglish speaking, professional local guide
Xplore Cusco Tranportation icon
TranportationAll transportation
Xplore Cusco Meals icon
MealsBreakfast and Buffet lunch in Humantay and Rainbow Mountain
Xplore Cusco Pick up icon
Pick upPick up from your accommodation in Cusco city
Xplore Cusco Accommodation icon
AccommodationHotel 3 stars in Aguas Calientes
Xplore Cusco More icon
MoreEntrance ticket to Salt mines in Maras

Not Included

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Meals not in the itinerary
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Extra hike to Huayna Picchu or Montaña
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Tips
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Travel insurance
Xplore Cusco Not Included Icon
Entrance to the hot springs in Aguas Calientes town (US$5)

Itinerary

Day 1: Sacred Valley - Maras or Pisaq

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  • Begin your Cusco 4-day itinerary by immersing yourself in the allure of the Sacred Valley, a region known for its cultural significance and natural beauty.
  • Choose between two captivating options: Maras, famous for its intricate salt terraces that have been harvested for centuries, or Pisaq, a town renowned for its vibrant markets and ancient Inca ruins.
  • Engage with the local culture as you explore the chosen destination. In Maras, witness the age-old salt production process, and in Pisaq, stroll through the bustling market to discover traditional crafts and local delicacies.
  • Return to Cusco in the evening, with your senses filled with the sights, sounds, and flavors of the day.

Day 2: Machu Picchu

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  • Today, the highlight of your itinerary awaits: the awe-inspiring Machu Picchu. Depart early for an exhilarating train journey through the Andean landscapes, taking you to the gateway of this ancient wonder.
  • With a knowledgeable guide, embark on a guided tour of Machu Picchu. Unveil the mysteries of this UNESCO-listed archaeological site as you explore its well-preserved ruins, terraces, and temples. Gain insights into the history and significance of this once-hidden Inca citadel.
  • Capture the iconic panoramic views that have made Machu Picchu a global symbol of wonder and exploration.
  • Return to Cusco by train, allowing the memories of this extraordinary day to linger.

Day 3: Humantay Lake

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  • Venture into the serene highlands to discover the picturesque Humantay Lake. Begin your trek, passing through diverse landscapes that showcase the region’s natural beauty.
  • Reach the crystal-clear turquoise waters of Humantay Lake, a hidden gem nestled amidst the mountains. Take in the tranquility of the surroundings as you soak in the serenity and reflect on the journey.
  • Immerse yourself in the pristine alpine environment, surrounded by towering peaks and untouched nature.
  • Return to Cusco in the late afternoon, rejuvenated by the tranquility of Humantay Lake.

Day 4: Rainbow Mountain

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  • Rise early to conquer the vibrant Rainbow Mountain, an adventure that promises panoramic vistas of unparalleled beauty.
  • Embark on a trek that leads you through high-altitude landscapes, where the unique mineral deposits create a mesmerizing spectrum of colors.
  • As you ascend to the summit, experience a sense of accomplishment and awe as the panoramic view unfolds before you, showcasing the stunning landscapes of the Andean highlands.
  • Capture the vibrant hues of Rainbow Mountain, a true testament to the natural wonders of the region.
  • Return to Cusco, with your heart and camera filled with memories of this extraordinary journey.

Prices

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Shared Tour Price: $ 690USD per person (Solo travelers)

  • from 2 persons: $650 per person
  • from 4 persons: $640per person
  • from 6 persons: $630 per person

How to book?

To book with us, follow these simple steps:

  1. Select the desired quantity.
  2. Choose your preferred date and wait for availability confirmation.
  3. The total price will be automatically displayed. No need to worry about quantity discounts; our system handles it for you.
  4. Add any additional items or services.
  5. Confirm your reservation by making a deposit or paying the full amount.

Booking with us is quick and effortless!

What to bring

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To make the most of your Cusco 4-day itinerary and ensure your comfort throughout the journey, here’s a list of essentials to pack:

  • Valid Identification and Travel Documents: Ensure you have your passport, relevant visas, and any other necessary travel documents readily accessible.
  • Comfortable Hiking Shoes: As you’ll be exploring diverse terrains, bring sturdy and comfortable hiking shoes with good traction. These will provide the support you need for walking and trekking.
  • Layered Clothing: Cusco’s weather can vary, so pack layers to adapt to changing temperatures. Include moisture-wicking fabrics for comfort during active days.
  • Sun Protection: Shield yourself from the high-altitude sun with sunscreen (SPF 30 or higher), sunglasses with UV protection, and a wide-brimmed hat.
  • Hydration: Stay hydrated by carrying a reusable water bottle. Staying hydrated is crucial at high altitudes and during active days.
  • Camera or Smartphone: Capture the breathtaking landscapes and unforgettable moments of your journey with a camera or smartphone.
  • Daypack: Bring a small daypack to carry your essentials during excursions. It should be comfortable to wear and have enough space for your water, camera, and personal items.
  • Rain Jacket or Poncho: Be prepared for unexpected weather changes by packing a lightweight and waterproof rain jacket or poncho.
  • Personal Medications: If you have any specific medications or medical supplies, make sure to have them on hand along with any necessary prescriptions.
  • Snacks: Pack some energy-boosting snacks like nuts, granola bars, or dried fruits to keep you fueled during the day.
  • Personal Items: Don’t forget items like your phone, charger, travel adapter, and any personal toiletries you might need.

What to wear

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To ensure your comfort and enjoyment during your Cusco 4-day itinerary, here’s a guide on what clothing and footwear to pack:

  • Comfortable Clothing: Opt for comfortable and breathable clothing that allows for easy movement. Choose moisture-wicking fabrics to stay dry during active days.
  • Layering: Cusco’s weather can vary throughout the day, so pack clothing that can be easily layered. This will help you adapt to changing temperatures without feeling too hot or too cold.
  • Long Pants: Pack lightweight, comfortable long pants that protect your legs from the sun, insects, and any rough terrains you might encounter.
  • T-shirts and Tops: Bring a mix of short-sleeve and long-sleeve tops that you can layer based on the weather. Consider packing tops with sun protection features.
  • Sturdy Hiking Shoes: Ensure you have sturdy hiking shoes with good traction. They should provide ankle support and be comfortable for walking and trekking.
  • Hat: Wear a wide-brimmed hat that shades your face and neck from the high-altitude sun. This will help protect you from sunburn and overheating.
  • Sunglasses: Bring sunglasses with UV protection to shield your eyes from the strong sunlight at higher altitudes.
  • Jacket or Sweater: Pack a lightweight jacket or sweater that you can easily layer over your tops. This will keep you warm during cooler moments, especially in the evenings.
  • Rain Gear: Be prepared for rain by packing a lightweight, waterproof rain jacket or poncho. This is especially important if you’re visiting during the rainy season.
  • Gloves and Hat (Rainbow Mountain): If you plan to hike Rainbow Mountain, consider bringing gloves and a warm hat for the chilly conditions at higher altitudes.
  • Socks: Pack moisture-wicking socks that are comfortable for walking. Consider bringing an extra pair or two for longer excursions.
  • Undergarments: Pack undergarments suitable for your planned activities. Choose moisture-wicking materials to keep you comfortable.
  • Swimsuit (Humantay Lake): If you plan to swim or dip your feet in the serene waters of Humantay Lake, bring a swimsuit.

Not allowed

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  • pets
  • smoking
  • alcohol
  • bags
  • umbrella

Recommendations

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  • Stay Hydrated: Cusco’s higher altitudes can lead to faster dehydration. Drink plenty of water throughout the day to stay hydrated and combat altitude effects.
  • Respect Local Culture: Engage with local customs and traditions with an open mind and heart. Show respect when visiting sacred sites and interacting with locals.
  • Engage with Guides: Take advantage of the knowledge of your local guides. They are passionate about sharing the history, culture, and stories that make each destination unique.
  • Pack Efficiently: Travel light with only the essentials. This will make your journey more comfortable and hassle-free, especially during hikes and excursions.
  • Capture Memories Mindfully: While capturing the beauty on camera is important, also take moments to fully immerse yourself in the experience. Balance photography with being present in the moment.
  • Balanced Exploration: Pace yourself and allow time for relaxation. Balancing active exploration with moments of rest will help you fully enjoy each day.
  • Altitude Awareness: Cusco’s high altitudes can affect individuals differently. Listen to your body, rest when needed, and consult a medical professional if altitude sickness symptoms arise.
  • Local Cuisine: Explore the local flavors and cuisine. Don’t hesitate to try traditional dishes and street food to fully appreciate the culinary side of Cusco.
  • Cultural Etiquette: Learn a few basic phrases in Spanish, such as greetings and polite expressions. This small effort can go a long way in connecting with locals.
  • Travel Insurance: Consider purchasing travel insurance that covers unexpected events such as trip cancellations, delays, or medical emergencies.
  • Stay Mindful of Environment: Preserve the beauty of the natural landscapes and historical sites by adhering to “Leave No Trace” principles. Respect local flora and fauna.
  • Rest Well: Ensure you get a good night’s sleep, especially before physically demanding activities like hikes. Rest will keep you energized and ready to explore.
  • Open-Mindedness: Embrace the adventure with an open mind. Some experiences might be different from what you’re used to, but they contribute to the authenticity of your journey.

More info

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More Information – Inca Trail 4 Days

1. Packing List for the Inca Trail

Before embarking on the Inca Trail 4-day trek, make sure you have essential items such as sturdy hiking shoes, comfortable clothing, a warm sleeping bag, rain gear, a hat, sunscreen, insect repellent, and a refillable water bottle. Additionally, pack personal medications, a camera to capture the breathtaking landscapes, and a small daypack for carrying snacks and essentials during the hike.

2. Altitude Sickness and Acclimatization

Cusco and the Inca Trail have high altitudes, which may cause altitude sickness. It is essential to spend at least two days in Cusco before the trek to acclimatize to the elevation. Stay hydrated, avoid strenuous activities, and consume coca tea or chew coca leaves to help with acclimatization.

3. Peruvian Cuisine and Special Diets

During the Inca Trail 4-day trek, you will be treated to delicious Peruvian cuisine prepared by our skilled chefs. We cater to special diets, including vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, and others. Please inform us of any dietary restrictions or preferences at the time of booking.

4. Preparing for Various Weather Conditions

As the Inca Trail passes through diverse microclimates, you may encounter different weather conditions during the trek. Be prepared for sunshine, rain, wind, and even chilly nights. Layered clothing is key to adapting to temperature changes.

5. Tips for Responsible Trekking

We promote responsible and sustainable trekking practices on the Inca Trail. Please respect the environment, wildlife, and local communities during the hike. Avoid littering, stick to marked trails, and support eco-friendly initiatives.

6. Supporting Local Communities

Xplore Cusco is committed to supporting local communities along the Inca Trail route. We work with licensed local guides, porters, and chefs who are integral to the success of the trek. Additionally, a portion of our proceeds goes towards social projects aimed at improving the lives of the local people.

7. Health and Safety Measures

Your safety and well-being are our top priorities. Our guides are trained in first aid and are equipped with emergency communication devices. We adhere to strict health and safety guidelines to ensure a smooth and secure trekking experience.

8. Booking and Cancellation Policies

Please review our booking and cancellation policies on our website before confirming your Inca Trail 4-day trek. Keep in mind that Inca Trail permits are non-transferable and non-refundable, as they are issued by the Peruvian Ministry of Culture.

9. Responsible Trekking Certifications

Xplore Cusco is a licensed and certified Inca Trail operator, authorized by the Peruvian government. We are dedicated to ethical trekking practices and adhere to all regulations set by the Peruvian Ministry of Culture and SERNANP (National Service of Natural Protected Areas).

10. Alternative Trekking Options

If Inca Trail permits are not available for your desired date or you prefer less crowded routes, we offer alternative treks to Machu Picchu, such as the Salkantay Trek, Inca Quarry Trek, and Lares Trek. These treks also provide breathtaking views and cultural experiences.

11. Photography and Drone Policy

Capture the stunning beauty of the Inca Trail, but please be mindful of the surroundings and fellow trekkers. Drones are not allowed on the trail due to potential environmental and safety concerns. Always seek permission before taking photos of local people and their homes.

12. Environmental Protection

As part of our commitment to environmental protection, we follow the principles of “Leave No Trace.” We carry out all trash and waste generated during the trek and dispose of it responsibly. Let’s work together to preserve the natural beauty of the Inca Trail for future generations.

FAQs

What sets apart the "Best of Cusco" tour by Xplore Cusco?
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Our tour offers a meticulously designed 4-day itinerary that combines cultural experiences and natural wonders. With a focus on personalized group interactions, local expertise, and iconic destinations, we aim to provide an enriching and memorable journey.
What are the highlights of the tour?
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The tour includes exploring the captivating Sacred Valley, unraveling the mysteries of Machu Picchu, visiting the serene Humantay Lake, and conquering the vibrant Rainbow Mountain. Engage with local culture, guided by experts passionate about the region.
How physically demanding are the activities on the tour?
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The tour involves a mix of activities, some of which include moderate physical exertion, such as hiking and trekking. A basic level of fitness is recommended to fully enjoy the experiences. Our local guides ensure a comfortable pace and offer options suitable for varying fitness levels.
How large are the tour groups?
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To facilitate meaningful interactions, our tour groups are deliberately kept small. This allows for personalized attention, cultural engagement, and a more intimate travel experience.
Can I customize the tour further?
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Absolutely! We are open to tailoring the itinerary to your preferences. Whether you wish to extend your stay, explore additional sites, or have specific interests, our team is here to create a customized experience for you.

Want an extra hike?

Upgrade your train Experience

*Pick-up is in Cusco’s historic center. If your hotel is outside, we’ll send the nearest pick-up point.

Pay a deposit of $ 150.00 per person

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