Choquequirao Trek | Responsible Tourism | Alemana Tours

Choquequirao Trek 4D/3N

Overview

Choquequirao is considered “the other Machu Picchu” or the “sister city of Machu Picchu”. It is also considered the “enigmatic refuge of the Incas” and one of the “great lost cities of the world“. Although more difficult to achieve than Machu Picchu, the ascent is not only rewarded with a great architectural beauty, but also with an unbeatable and spectacular location above the Canyon of the Apurimac River. The views from here are equally or even more impressive than those at the Grand Canyon of the Colorado River. In addition, you can still find here a very little altered Andean flora and fauna and on many occasions it’s even possible to watch condors.

This make it the perfect choice for a traveler who prefers less tourists along the way.

The level of difficulty of this trek is challenging. Make sure you are well acclimatized to the altitude, and are in good shape and health.

  • Departure: On request
  • Service: Guided group tour
  • Language guide: English and Spanish
  • Tour Category: Cultural, Historical, Adventurous, Nature, Trekking

Tour description

Day 1: Cusco – Cachora – Chiquisca

You will leave Cusco very early and travel by van for several hours through one of the most beautiful Andean landscape of Peru until the sleepy village of Cachora (2850m) is reached. This is also the starting point of the trek. Here your guide, the horseman and the beast of burden (for camping equipment) will join the group. The first destination to achieve on the trek is the Pass of Capuliyoc (2800m). Here you can appreciate the great scenery of the beautiful snow mountain Padreyoc and the deep Apurimac Canyon. Descending towards the inside of the canyon, you arrive after 6 hours of hiking at Chiquisca (1930m), where you will overnight.

Hiking time: 7 hours

Altitude campsite:  1930 m.a.s.l.

Difficulty: Challenging

Day 2: Chiquisca – Playa Rosalina – Marampata – Choquequirao

This day begins continuing the trek toward the depth of the canyon until reaching Playa Rosalina (1550m). Here, crossing the Apurimac River, the trek continues to Marampata (2850m). From here you have a splendid view over Choquequirao. Finally you will ascent to end your hike of today at the campsite (3033m), only half an hour away from Choquequirao.

Hiking time: 7 hours

Altitude campsite: 3033 m.a.s.l.

Difficulty: Challenging

Day 3: Choquequirao – San Ignacio – Carmen

Early in the morning you will head to Choquequirao to explore the citadel and its natural environment, together with the explanations of the guide. Choquequirao is larger than Machu Picchu. Still a lot of the site is hidden in the forest, only a third of the ´Golden Cradle´ has been exposed now. The most impressive parts of this site are the temples, astronomical observatories, and water channels. All this, in combination with the incredible views of the Apurimac canyon leaves an unforgettable impression.

After having explored the site you will return again to the deepest part of the canyon. Then you have to cross the river to get to the remnants of the old hacienda San Ignacio (1500m). From that point the hike leads up to a warm valley with cactus, bromelas and strange trees (ceibos and acacias) until the camp, which is located in the gardens of El Carmen (2000m) is reached.

Hiking time: 6 hours

Altitude campsite: 2.000 meters

Difficulty: Challenging

Day 4: Carmen – Tambobamba – Huanipaca

The Gardens of El Carmen are located close to the hacienda Tambobamba (2500m), which is a center of a vast and fertile territory, dominated by landowners during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The vestiges of this are present in the huge mansion, which bears the same name.

From here you will get on a touristic transportation (car or bus) to return back to Cusco. After a 5 hrs hike and 5 hrs drive you will have seen unforgettable landscapes.

Hiking time: 5 hours

Transportation time: 5 hours

Level: Challenging

Included

Included in the tour:

Professional bilingual guide (English and Spanish).

All transportation: The bus from your hotel to Cachora and the return to your hotel in Cusco.

Entrance fees: Entrance fees to Choquequirao Inca site.

Horseman and mules, for all camping and personal luggage (up to 7kg. per person).

Camping equipment: professional tents big enough for two persons, sleeping mattress, dining tent, cook and cooking equipment.

Meals during the trek (breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks / option vegetarian).

First-aid kit, oxygen bottle and emergency horse.

Not included:

Sleeping bag or walking sticks. It is possible to rent these items.

Breakfast on the first day and lunch and dinner on last day.

Price

Price of this tour is 565 USD per person (minimum 2 persons).

If you wish to hire additional equipment:

Sleeping bag: 25 USD

Walking sticks (pair): 25 USD

Private Tour

Instead of a group tour it is also possible to do this tour as a private tour. This means more, personal attention from the guide and more flexibility during the tour.

The price of a private tour depends on the number of participants:

$ 720.00 Per person, when booking with 2 people

$ 580.00 Per person, when booking with 3 people

$ 530.00 Per person, when booking with 4 people

Practical information

Briefing

The night before your trek, you will have a briefing of your trek at the office of the operator or in your hotel in Cusco city center. Alemana Tours will make sure you will know where to be and at what time. At this briefing you will receive, detailed and important information about your trek.

What to bring

Backpack with rain shelter

Sleeping bag if you didn´t hire this

Clothing for warm and cold climate like a waterproof jacket

Rain pants and lightweight pants

Trekking shoes

Slippers or sandals for showers

Woolen or synthetic socks and a sweater

Long- and short-sleeved polo’s/t-shirts

Rain poncho and a hat

Sunscreen, insect repellent, disinfecting alcohol and gel, water bottle or Camelbag, toiletries and toilet paper

Camera (wrapped in plastic bag), a flash light and batteries

Original passport, original ISIC student card and extra money in soles

Since the weather can be very cold and moistly, your clothes once gotten wet, won’t dry at night. So bring some clothes to change

Food and Water

You will be surprised about the quality and great taste of the food during a trek. Every trek is accompanied by a cook. It is no problem if you have special diet wishes, or if you are vegetarian or vegan, let us know in advance. During the trek you will also be given a variety of snacks.
During your trek you will be supplied with drinking water. This water will be boiled, filtered and then cooled, before distributed. You must supply your own water bottles or camel back.

Weather Conditions

It is impossible to predict the weather during a trek. Dry season in the region of Cusco is from April until October. In the other months you can expect a lot of rain. But in the mountains it is not possible to predict the weather accurately. It also can rain during dry season. Because of the many micro-climates you will pass, the weather can change drastically during one day.
You will have to be prepared for all weather conditions: warm and cold, dry and wet. Bring proper rain gear and a warm winter jacket, also bring gloves. Layers are always a good answer on the changing weather conditions.

Altitude

Here in Cusco and during a trek you are at quite a high altitude. This can cause altitude sickness, especially the first days. This is because there is a lot less oxygen in the air than at sea level and your body needs some time to adjust to that. Symptoms are mostly mild like: headache, dizziness, nausea and vomiting, trouble sleeping and trouble breathing during exercise. If you get these symptoms, they mostly go away after a few days.

What can you do about altitude sickness:

Take your time to acclimatize, take it easy the first days. It is better the first days not to do hard physical activities.

Drink lots of fluids like coca tea or water, but don´t drink alcohol or coffee.

You can visit your doctor before and get medication against the altitude.

Health and Fitness

A trek means multiple days, walking longer distances, at a higher altitude. So it definitely will help if you are in a reasonably good shape and bring an adventurous attitude. This especially goes up for the Choquequirao Trek, where it can be warm and humid. It is highly recommended to acclimatize to the altitude a few days before you do a trek. If you think you have concerns about your health, we recommend you visit your doctor first. Let us know about any health issues that could affect your trek.

Insurance

We strongly recommend you take a travel insurance going on vacation to Peru and doing a trek. Having a travel insurance will help you and avoid a lot of problems in case you need medical assistance or you lose your luggage for example.

First aid

On your trek there will be an emergency first aid kit available including oxygen. Your tour guide has received a training in first aid.

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