When possible we highly recommend hiking this trail in 5 days, in order to be able to spend a full day (trek day 3) in the Choquequirao ruins. The Inca city is situated in the vast landscape of the Vilcabamba Range above the Apurimac River Canyon. Choquequirao was the dwelling of the last rebel Incas of Vilcabamba and similar to Machu Picchu, it is thought that the Spanish never discovered it. This is a challenging trek traversing different ecosystems. There are amazing views of the Vilcabamba Range and the trail descends deep into the Apurimac Canyon, a truly magnificent hike.

Day 1 Cusco to Cachora to Chiquisqa

From Cusco we take an early morning drive in our private transport to the small town of Cachora, our entrance to the Apurimac canyon. Once on the trail, the mountain range and glaciers in view will amaze and delight, providing strong motivation for this challenging trek. After few hours we will reach the mountain pass and the beginning of our long downhill for today. From this vantage point, if we have a clear sky, we will see our final destination from afar and our reason for being here, the magnificent Choquequirao. The downhill is very steep and quite unforgiving and can be painful for our knees (if you have knee problems we suggest to use “knee braces” or supports). We will hike down almost until the valley floor. Chiquiska will be our piece of green paradise to rest in for this night. As we are lower and near the Apurimac river a strong mosquito repellent is essential. Early dinner and early to bed, ready for the tough uphill tomorrow!

Start Height: 2900m / 9514ft.              
Max Height: 2941m / 9648ft.
Approximate Walking time: 6 hrs             
Distance travelled: 19km / 11.80 ml
Meals:  L, D. Snacks

Day 2 Chiquisqa to Choquequirao Campsite 

 After our first night on the trail, we ascend to the Choquequirao camp site (2847m /9340ft), which stands about 1500m above the Apurimac River. The ascent is steep and tough but along the way there are rewarding spectacular views of the surrounding landscape. From the top of this mountain at Marampata we will get our ‘birds eye view’ of the beautiful and powerful Apurimac river. We continue down until we reach our next campsite. If you arrive early and energy levels are high it may be possible to spend time at Pacchayoq, in the lower sector of the complex, where we will see ancient Inca water channels, ceremonial rocks and much more. We will return to the campsite for dinner.

Start Height: 2847m / 9340ft                 
Max Height:  3100m / 10170ft. 
Approximate Walking time: 8 hours            
Distance travelled: 14km / 8.69 ml
Meals:  B, L, D. Snacks

Day 3 Campsite to Choquequirao Citadel to Campsite

After a tasty breakfast we leave camp and hike up to the ruins. For now Choquequirao is a breath taking destination of an ‘unspoiled’ trek and you won’t see many tourists. You will find tranquility at the top of a mountain, enveloped in the sound of the roaring river below, and if you are lucky you may even see Condors soaring by. The best part is you get to spend the whole day here and after a guided tour there will be time for you to find a quiet space, lie down in the grass and absorb the experience of being in an ancient Inca City…

Day 4 Choquequirao Campsite to Chiquisca

It will be a long yet more leisurely hike back to our first campsite at Chiquisca and after an unforgettable experience well worth the walk. On this day we can really enjoy the journey and take in the vast changes of the countryside.

Start Height: 2847 masl / 9340 ft            
Max Height: 2941 masl / 9648 ft.
Approximate Walking time: 9 hours            
Distance travelled: 19km / 11.80 ml 
Meals:  B, L, D. Snacks

Day 5 Chiquisca to Capuliyoc

Setting off in the early morning light we begin our hard climb to Capuliyoc, from where we can again appreciate the spectacular backdrop of the Apurimac canyon and feel truly deserving of the view. The route finally levels out again and it is only 2 hours back to the town of Cachora where we will take our transport back to Cusco.

 Services included:

  • Briefing one day before the trek.

  • Collection from your hotel in the morning of the trek departure.

  • 3 nutritious meals per day (vegetarian options available).

  • Drinking water along the trek.

  • Bilingual guide (Assistant Guide for groups over 6 passengers).

  • Chef (assistant chef for larger groups). 

  • Quadruple tents to be used by two people, allowing more comfort and more space to store backpacks. 

  • Mules (for equipment and personal items) and muleteers. 

  • Inflatable mattresses. 

  • Sleeping liner and pillow. 

  • Saddled horse in case of emergencies or if you are making very little progress (this horse is with the group at all time).  

  • First aid kit and oxygen bottle.

  • Kitchen tent and dining tent with camp tables and chairs.

  • Toilet tent.

  • Duffel bags (up to 7Kg/15lbs per person). This will be provided by your guide at your briefing.

 Services not included:

  • Breakfast on the first morning.

  • Dinner on the last night.

  • Sleeping bag. If you don’t want to bring your own, we can hire this for you.

  • Tips for guides and field staff.