Hi im hopefully going to be completed the inca trail next year, im un-sure when would be the best time to do it and the weather i should be expecting. Im also unsure who to book with? and also the cost of completing it? If anyone could recommend someone they have been with and they had a good tour? im a solo traveller and il be 19. Thanks very much for the hel
I've literally just landed back in Cusco after the trail and can assure you that you're going to have a fab time! We went with SAS Peru, and I have seen some negative comments about them on various forums but personally have nothing but praise for them. They were well organised, treated their porters well, we were very well fed and the cost was $460 per person. We booked in Feb for a May trip, and were lucky to get the last 2 places on the trip we wanted. There are a limited number of permits issued per day so I'd start looking to book about 6 months before you go if you know what date you want to go.
Hope this helps, if you have any other questions just ask!
thanks very much, theres so many different companies all claming different things, did you manage to stay at the campsite in manu pichi(sorry spelling) because lots claim that only some companies are aloud to camp there. How many days/nights did your trip last? thanks very much for the help!
My trip was 4 days, 3 nights. There is an option of staying in Agues Caliante on the 4th night as there are hot springs there but we headed back to Cusco on the 4th afternoon. I'm not sure about the camp site at Manu Pichi - first night we stayed in a tiny site that only had us there, the second night we were in a site just beyond dead woman pass which was a bit bigger, and on the third night we stayed at Winaywayna where I think everyone camps as it´s the last stop before a checkpoint heading up to the sun gate.
More details can be found on SAS's website, just google SAS Peru!
There is some information in the Inca Trail article in TP's Travel Guide, including a link where you can check the number of places available for each day in real-time.
One more thing: depending on budget, physical condition, proficiency in Spanish and time available, there is a couple of other treks in the Sacred Valley that I think are much better than the Inca Trail. Many of them can be done independently as well.
I don't know if they are "much better" to be honest.
I was surprised at just how many good ruins we came across on the inca trail. I did it with SAS last month and our guide was fabulous. So well informed and very very proud and immersed us in the inca traditions and stories etc. He was called Ruben.
Anyway, I paid a little less than above for SAS and did it finishing on April 1st. I also stayed the extra night in Aguas Calientes and got the vistadome train back. It was nice enough but really you don't see much at all. Certainly not what I was lead to believe you would.
I think the Inca Trail is a must. It is the ONLY trail that finishes at MP itself. The others finish close but it's not the same really.
Weather wise it rained a little on our trip but it was comfortable with a poncho so not that bad at all.
Hey! If you want to do the original Inca trail, you really want to hurry up, the sooner you book it, the sooner the better! It gets sold out way too quickly! The tickets are issued centrally so once the agencies buy them off for their clients, there is no way you'd get your place in with a different agency.
That was my case! Way too late to book my place. However you can still do alternative treks and they will all bring you to Machu Picchu at the end of the programme - like for example Salkantay, Santa Maria (the Inca Jungle Trek) or Lares. I did Salkantay with Land Adventures and they were really cool! Reasonably priced, great service, the guide spoke nice English and the best of all we didn't have to carry all our equipment as they organized horses for us.
They also do trekking in Colca Canyon for 3 days / 2 nights - did that with them and was equally satisfied with the service! - really cool!
If you want to, have a look at their website -snip-
[ Edit: Sorry, no promos please. ]
I had no interest in doing the full Inca Trail tbh. 4 nights of camping and walking sounds boring. We went to a travel agency in Cusco and booked an alternative trip.
On day one we did a 55 k downhill mountain bike route (its easy and fun). We also did a 1 day jungle walk which was enough walking in my opinion, got to meet some locals, see some animals etc...That day was rouded off by a few hours in thermal baths on the urubamba river (which are way way better than the ones in aguas calientes). The next day we walked along the tracks to Aguas Calientes with our guide who spoke perfect english and gave us loads of info along the way. We then had from lunchtime until the end of the day to relax,. The next morn we got up at 3am and made it to the top of MP by 6 or 7. We did a bit of the tour but then strayed away to climb Waynapicchu.
All of our meals wer inckluded and we stayed in hostels each night and it only cost around 150 dollars (thats including a train home)