Short Inca Trail Trek to Machu Picchu
Short Inca Trail is for those with limited time or trekkers looking for a less strenuous trek; than the four days Inca trail. It’s an easy trek; although people not in good shape might struggle on certain parts of the trail; The Short Inca Trail runs through the Urubamba canyon and the highest pass is at 2,750m. Our Short Inca Trail takes you to hike 13km of distance; it begin at the Km 104 (104 km along the railroad from Cusco to Machu Picchu); the trek pass through a stunning cloud forest; where you´ll appreciate wonderful and exuberant wildlife like birds, hummingbirds, animals, flowers, orchids and more.
The Short Inca Trail trek is also known as a “Sacred Trail to Machu Picchu” or the 2-day trek to Machu Picchu. Doing this trek our passengers; only the first day will walk; the second day after a hearty breakfast in the hotel; we’ll take ythe bus for 25 minutes and explore the stunning Machu Picchu with our best guide. During the Machu Picchu tour, you’ll visit the Main Plaza, the Circular Tower, the Sacred Solar Clock, the Royal Quarters, the Temple of the Three Windows and cemeteries, etc. The Tour within Machu Picchu will last around two hours; then you will have free time to stroll around the Inca citadel.
Two-day or Short Inca Trail runs though the reserved area of Machu Picchu which is situated at 100km east of the city of Cusco in the border of the Andes and the Amazon Jungle. This is one of the most beautiful sites in southern Peru, which is considered as an abode of the “Apus” the amazon protector. The Short Inca Trail ends in the Inca build of Machu Picchu; it is one of the great Inca Sanctuary built in the XV century.
This Short Inca Trail itinerary links two of the most important Inca sites in the south of Peru; Wiñayhuayna and Machu Picchu; the trail crosses the Vilcabamba mountain range. The Short Inca Trail is trekking at altitudes of between 2,100m to 2,750m. Most of the trekking route is thought a pristine forest. In general the trek is combined with journeys by train and bus. During the Short Inca Trail are included hotels of 3-stars category near the Inca sanctuary of Machu Picchu.
Hiking on the Short Inca Trail is no impromptu affair; it requires a licensed guide and a permit (The permit can get only authorized travel agencies). For the Short Inca Trail, there are only 250 permits daily and they typically sell out four or more months in advance. There are 250 permits (hikers and guides total) issued each day for the one-day hike. All of these permits are issued for a specific date and person; they are not transferable or refundable.
For the trail is provided a half liter of water plus a box lunch. After we drive from Cusco to Ollantaytambo train station we ride the train for 1:30 hours to Chachabamba or km 104. We get off the train and cross a short distance bridge when suddenly we reach to the check-in station, where your hiking permit and passport are scrutinized. Soon after the trek starts, we visit the Inca Archaeological site of Chachabamba, this may have been a religious site. After the ruins, the trail begins to climb up to the ruins of Wiñya Wayna (Forever Young) orchids, begonias, etc. along the way, making for a colorful walk.
The Short Inca Trail Facts
- AVAILABILITY: Throughout the year except February
- TIMING: 2 days and 1 ninth
- STARTING POINT: Cusco hotel
- END POINT: Cusco hotel
- STYLE: Guided
- GRADE: Moderate to challenge
- MAXIMUM ELEVATION: 2,750 meter
- ACCOMMODATION: Camping tents
- TRANSPORT: Bus, train and trekking
- MEALS INCLUDED: As mentioned in the itinerary
The Short Inca Trail Description
The two-days Short Inca Trail commence at Km 104, at the zone of Chachabamba named for the existence of exuberant vegetation; it´s located at 2,100 meters asl (104 kilometers along the railway from Cusco to Aguas Calientes town) . This trek involves a 13 Km from which 11Kms are uphill from the beginning until Inti Punku or Sun gate and then continue 2Km down to Machu Picchu. Short Inca Trail is perfect for trekker who doesn’t want to spend long time in the mountain but still want to feel the charm of the energetic mountains. In this trek you will see different ecological zones and great variety of flora like: flowers, orchids, begonias, lilies, etc. Also you will see birds, hummingbird, falcons, wild turkey, tanagers, finches, etc.
You also will enjoy the sunset from the Sun gate or Inti Punku before descent to Machu Picchu; late in the afternoon we’ll take a bus down to Aguas Calientes town where you will spend the night in a hotel of 3-stars categery. The following day we’ll explore Machu Picchu; the tour will last for 2-3 hours after which you’ll have free time for further exploration. Then you’ll return to the town of Aguas Calientes to enjoy your lunch. In the afternoon we’ll take the train to return to the train station of Ollantaytambo and from here you’ll be transfer by van to Cusco.
- Ride the train through the sacred valley
- Guided Inca trail
- Guided tour in every Inca site (Chachabamba, Wiñayhuayna, Inti Punku)
- Machu Picchu sun set and sunrise
- Guided tour within Machu Picchu
- Free time within Machu Picchu
- Scenic walks and inspiring mountain scenery
Brief Short Inca Trail Itinerary
Day 1.- Cusco
- 4:00am we’ll pick you up from your hotel in Cusco; if you are in the sacred valley (Ollantyatmbo) at 5:45am
- Ride the trail for 1:30 from ollantaytambo to Chachabamba or km 104
- Hike for 6-7 hours from Chachabamba to Machu Picchu
- Explore the Inca sites of Chachabamba, Wiñay wayna and Inti Punku.
- Take the bus from Machu Picchu to Aguas Calientes
- Hotel Accommodation in the town of Aguas Calientes
Day 2.- Aguas Calientes
- 4:45am get breakfast in the hotel
- 5:30 take the bus for 25 minutes up to Machu Picchu
- 7:00 will start your tour within Machu Picchu
- 2-3 Hours Guided tour in Machu Picchu
- Enjoy a free time for further exploration
- At around noon, return to by bus to the town of Aguas Calientes
- After your lunch, walk to the train station
- Ride the train to the train station of Ollantaytambo (1:45 hours)
- Tranfer to from Ollantaytambo to Cusco
How to Book Short Inca Trail to Machu Picchu?
Fort this trip two days before you start of the hike, you will have a pre-trek briefing at your hotel. This will be coordinated (time and location) before your arrival to Cusco by email. In this briefing, you will be given an overview of the shot hike to Machu Picchu as well as recommendations and advice by your guide in order to have the best trek possible.
Cusco – Ollantaytambo – Chachabamba (km 104) – Aguas Calientes
The Short Inca Trail or 2-day Inca trail start at 4:00 when we pick you up from your hotel in Cusco and transfer you in our private van to Ollantaytambo train station, then we will board a tourist train with reserved seats for 1 hour and 30 minutes to Chachabamba or Km 104 (2100m); As soon as we arrive to Chachabamba we will cross a wood bridge to the check point and show the permits and your passports; then we will start a soft walk for 5 minutes towards the ruins of Chachabamba, (named by the existence of a dense vegetation) At this place we will see the stone altar dedicated to the mountains also we will see the ceremonial water fountains. After the explanation of Chachabamba, we’ll continue trekking a gentle up toward Wiñayhuayna.
The trail leaves the forest and continues in open grassland by the left bank of the Urubamba River/valley. After trekking in the sun for about three hours, the trail descends into a shaded forest; at this place you can enjoy a beautiful waterfall and then continue through thick vegetation and we will arrive at the lower part of the incredible Inca ruins of Wiñayhuayna (forever young). Wiñayhuayna contents important agricultural system with interesting aqueducts for irrigation this was discovered by Peruvian archaeologist Julio C. Tello at 1942.
At Wiñayhuana we will enjoy the lunch and after a rest brake we will continue two hours trek toward the Inti punku or the Sun gate, which is the entrance to Machu Picchu from this point you can see Machu Picchu; after you take enough pictures we descent toward Machu Picchu and from here take the bus for 25 minutes down to Aguas Calientes town and have accommodation the hotel. In the evening you can go to relax to the Hot springs pools and be ready for the following day.
- Meals: L D
- Maximum Altitude: 2700m
- Minimum Altitude: 2100m
- Distance Travelled: 13 Km approximately
- Approximate Walking Time: 6 – 7 Hours
Aguas Calientes – Machu Picchu – Cusco
Today probably you won´t like because the wake up will be very early and the breakfast will be at 4.45am; after this we leave the backpacks in the reception of the hotel an take the early bus up to Machu Picchu; at this time is still not so crowded at Machu Picchu, so we’ll take advantage of the tranquility of this sacred Inca site. Then we continue whit the guided tour for 2-3 hours approximately. we will visit the agricultural area, the temple of the sun, the temple of the Condor, the temple of the Andean cosmology, the Sun dial and all important sites.
After the tour you will have free time to explore by yourself or you can climb the Waynapaicchu Mountain (check availability). At around 12:00am take the bus donw to Aguas Calientes town where you can enjoy your lunch and then we head to the train station to return to the train estation of Ollantaytambo and from here you’ll be transferred to Cusco.
- Meals: BL
- Maximum Altitude: 2400m
- Minimum Altitude: 2000m
Price: US$ 450 per person
All prices are in US dollars and do not include international airfare, unless otherwise noted.
Short Inca Trail Includes
- Pre-departure briefing at your Hotel or in our office time will be confirmed on your arrival to Cusco.
- Pick up form your Hotel at 04:300am
- Private transport to Ollantaytambo Train Station.
- Expedition class train to Km 104 (starting point of the trek).
- Entrance fees for the trail and Machu Picchu.
- Permits for the 2 Day Inca Trail to Machu Picchu.
- Walk with an excellent English speaking guide.
- 1 Box Lunch, 1 Dinner, 1 Breakfast.
- Private room for 2 or 3 person in Hotel with Shower and bathroom.
- 2 bus tickets (Machu Picchu-Aguas Calientes –Machu Picchu)
- Expedition class train return to Ollantaytambo and transport to Cusco.
- Personal Travel Advisor assigned for you to customize the rest of your Peru Trip.
- Bus down from Machu Picchu to Aguas Calientes on 2nd Day US$ 9
- (or a Downhill walk for 45 minutes to Aguas Calientes)
- Dinner on the 2nd Day
- Drinks, snacks or water
- Tips for your guide are not mandatory.
- Admission fee for Wuayna Picchu Mountain $60
- Hot spring pools 10 soles. (Optional)
We Recommend That You Bring
- Your Original Passport.
- Student card ISIC (if applicable).
- You only need to carry a small day pack.
- Water to drink 1 liter.
- Camera, rain jacket in rainy season – Nov. to Jan
- Basic toiletries
- Hat or cap for the sun, essential
- Sun scream with sun protection
- Insect repellent for mosquitoes(Malaria or Yellow fever not been reported)
- Comfortable hiking boots.
- Money in soles or dollars. ATM´s or cash machines and travelers cheques in Aguas Calientes are more expensive to change.
Trek Payment Details
For two-day Short Inca Trail, we require a non-refundable trek deposit of US$150 per person. The deposit can be sent by a WESTERN UNION or to our BANK ACCOUNT money transfer. This is the fastest and most secure form of payment in Peru. The money transfer should be in the name of SUNRISE PERU TREK TOUR OPERATOR E.I.R.L. Once you arrive in Cusco you must pay the remaining balance in cash prior to beginning your tour. We accept both US Dollars and Peruvian Soles (local currency).
The night before your Short Inca Trail there will be a pre-trek talk (briefing) in our office or in your hotel at either 6 or 7pm (exact time will be confirmed on arrival to Cusco).
To reserve and confirm Short Inca Trail for groups or individual clients, the following information is required and must be sent to us via our reservation form; any doubt Skype us or contact us to +51 950 313131 (24/7).
- Full name as it appears in the holder’s passport.
- Passport number valid on the date of the trip being requested.
- Departure Date.
- Address and telephone number.
- current e-mail address;
- Date of birth.
- Dates and times of flights or arrival in Peru and Cusco.
- Medical or dietary restrictions.
- Any special interests regarding the service requested.
Methods Of Payment:
In order to deal with your Short Inca Trail reservation in timely manner we require a nonrefundable deposit of 40% of the total cost of the chosen program at the time of booking. All payments should be made to our bank account, or via the method of payment agreed upon at time of booking. The deposit can be sent by a WESTERN UNION or to our BANK ACCOUNT money transfer. This is the fastest and most secure form of payment in Peru. The money transfer should be in the name of SUNRISE PERU TREK TOUR OPERATOR E.I.R.L. Once you arrive in Cusco you must pay the remaining balance in cash prior to beginning your tour. We accept both US Dollars and Peruvian Soles (local currency).
Make sure you always quote the invoice number that you have received from us. Please scanned and send us a copy by email, this will help us to track the payment and will be considered as proof of payment.
HOTEL IN AGUAS CALEINETS – HOSTEL PRESIDENTE OR SIMILAR
Address: Agua Calientes town – Cusco
Rating: 3 star
Located in the center of the town of Aguasn Calientes or Machu Picchu, near the bus station and the main square of Machu Picchu, Hostal Presidente is a charming hotel near Peru’s most famous attraction. Guestrooms are decorated with rich wooden panels and simple but comfortable furniture and all of them are blissfully air conditioned. A sumptuous buffet breakfast is laid out each morning, offering a range of fresh fruits and other delicious treats. In the afternoons and evenings, guests can choose from a number of different Peruvian dishes in the hotel’s restaurant. Hostal Presidente is just 30 minutes from the main site of Machu Picchu.
GETTING TO CUSCO PERU
You will land at the International Airport in Cusco when you come from Lima the capital of Peru. Our travel representatives will receive you at the Airport and then transfer you to a hotel in the center of city. That will be our first task after you land in this historical city at 2,400m. The itinerary then follows in the coming days.
WHY TO TREK WITH US?
“SUNRISE PERU TREK” offers a wonderful opportunity to help you visit those areas, culture and tradition of Peru that have never been explored before. Your trip itineraries are fully customized in order to meet the individualized needs and interest of each traveler. We also partner with local Porters and Leaders to help you get maximum out of the trip. We are highly dedicated and offer years of experience to plan an outstanding adventure trip for you. Customer service is our top priority; therefore, we cater to every possible need of yours during your stay in Peru be it the food, accommodation, varied destinations or your communication needs. Despite all these facilities, our best packages are offered at a very competitive rate.
INCA TRAIL TREKKING PERMIT
There are some restricted trekking destinations in Peru which require special permission from the government of Peru all trekkers (locals and foreigners). They also need to pay a fixed royalty to trek some of the selected places in Peru. Some of the restricted trekking destinations like Short Inca Trail, Classic Inca Trail, Inca Trail and Salcantay, etc. require special trek permit. However, there won’t be any such problem as we, the company, will look after the legal formalities in securing the trek permits for the clients. It will be our responsibility to secure trek permits for you.
As most of the trekking destinations in Peru exceed 4,000 meters of altitude, high altitude sickness is one of the common problems faced by the trekkers. High altitude sickness can be very fatal and dangerous if you are not prepared for the same. Some of the trekking destinations like Classic Inca trail, Salkantay trek, Ausangate trek exceeds the 5000 meters of altitude with chances of high altitude sickness. However, if you are aware of the problem and if you take special measure, then altitude sickness can be avoided and will not be much of a problem. As we have experienced trekking guides and a team of experienced hand, altitude sickness will not be a problem and even if it occurs, it will be handled well by our team members.
Whenever we embark on a tour package or Short Inca Trail itinerary, we are fully prepared of the possible consequences or the untoward incidents, and hence our team carries a separate medical kit. Medical kit is of immense help and importance during our tours and treks as you never know what will happen next, even regarding the health of the trekkers. Availability of medical kit is very paramount as it will help to provide immediate medical attention to the needy person. Problems of high altitude sickness, shortness of breathing, dizziness, etc. are the ones frequently encountered during the trek. Presence of medical kit helps to resolve any of such problems and provides immediate relief and medical attention to the person who is in need for the same.
Some special trekking equipment are necessary for trekking and expeditions. Such special equipment will have to be brought or arranged by you. As such equipment are quite expensive; it is not possible for us to arrange such materials. However, general trekking and minor accessory requirements will be provided by the company. You only need to bring with you some of the special trekking equipment necessary for trek and expeditions. Also, if you do not have such equipment then we can provide you with such equipment, but you need to pay for it.
FOOD AND ACCOMMODATION
We always make sure that our customers get the right value for their money. Therefore, we always attempt to make some of the best arrangements for our customers. To ensure a comfortable stay, we book tourist standard hotel in Cusco and Aguas Calientes town before and after your trek. Normally, the rooms are twin share, where you will have to share your room with another member of your group. However, this totally depends on the size of your group and the availability of rooms in the hotel. On request, triple share can also be arranged. Moreover, if you are looking for a single supplement room, extra charges will be applied.
During the Short Inca Trail trek, your stay is arranged camping sites or lodges with shared amenities. You can also enjoy a hot shower in these lodges. In the absence of shower few buckets of hot water can also be arranged. A full board meal (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner and tea &coffee) will be provided during the entire trek. Usually, porridge, toast or chapattis, oatmeal and local bread are served for breakfast. The food served for lunch and dinner are simply great.
Peru offers a fantastic selection of good to top quality hotels with a number of reliable chains operating in the main tourist destinations including the Peruvian-owned Casa Andina as well as international brands such as Starwoods Hotels. A number of the country’s colonial buildings have been transformed into luxury hotels to offer guests a glimpse into Peru’s heritage whilst enjoying a comfortable stay. For those looking for something a little more rustic there’s the chance to spend a night in a tree house in the Amazon though jungle lodges can also offer 5* convenience for discerning visitors.
OUR ATTEMPT WHILE YOU ARE ON A TREK
Most of our trails take you to the remote region of Peru, where communication facilities are very less. Therefore, “SUNRISE PERU TREK” takes all the responsibility to deliver your message to your family, friend, relatives or the concerned person. Our guides are provided with a cell phone and are contacted on a regular basis. You can use the cell phone provided to our guides to send your message to us which will further be delivered to the respected person. Also, our guides will make every attempt to follow the planned itinerary; however, it is kindly requested to be flexible in case of changes in the itinerary caused by extreme weather conditions.
OPTIONAL SOLO SLEEPER
If you are travelling alone one of the most rewarding things you can do is join a small group tour. Not only does it connect you with other like-minded travellers but it means you have other people to share and reminisce on your experiences with when you return home.
In general, approximately one third of any group will be made up of single travellers, with the remainder being friends or couples travelling together. All of our holidays are based on twin share, so solo travellers generally share a room or tent with someone of the same gender, however if you prefer your own space you may like to consider our Optional Solo Sleeper.
For a fixed price per tour, you can enjoy your very own room or tent ensuring you more space, quiet time and privacy. This option will give you your own room or tent for every night, or in the majority of locations on your trip.
Prices for the Solo Sleeper option, and tour specific information, are available on tour pages. The number of Solo Sleepers we can offer per tour is limited and is subject to availability so it’s best to book early if you would like this option.
Based on past experience, we recommend at least Peruvian soles 200 – 500 (approx. USD 120 – 150) per day to cover your normal expenses including sightseeing, small souvenir shopping and meals. If you wish to purchase expensive souvenirs, you will need to budget for more, or use your credit cards for these purchases.
Remember, this is a rough figure only and spending habits vary greatly between individuals according to their budget and habits!
Although you may not be accustomed to tipping at home, tipping (known locally as ‘baksheesh’) is an important way of life in Peru and is something that is done by locals as well as tourists.
When travelling with top deck, tips are already included on anything that forms part of your itinerary, including bus/coach drivers, included meals, hotel staff, local guides, etc. This includes your SUNRISE PERU TREK tour leader. That means you do not have to tip for any of these included services!
However, you will need to tip for services that are not included, so please take this into consideration when working out your budget. For example, you will need to tip at non-included meals when you pay for the meal yourself, even if your Trip Leader has helped organize it, and you will need to tip for anything you do on your free time. Your Trip Leader can advise you what an appropriate tip amount is. A general rule when tipping is if the service warrants it, tip what you think is a fair amount, and if you do not think so, then do not tip or tip less than normal. Also, do not get bullied into tipping and disregard any comments that you have not given enough.
In the Short Inca Trail is compulsory for all passengers to take out comprehensive travel insurance before the trip departs covering cancellation, medical expenses including repatriation, loss or damage to baggage and personal belongings, money and personal liability.
You must bring a copy of your travel insurance policy with you on the trip. Your Short Inca Trail Leader will make a record of your travel insurance details at the start of your trip, e.g. the name of the insurance company, the 24 hour emergency telephone number, and your policy number. These will be sent to our operations team to ensure that if you lose your policy details, they can be easily retrieved.
Depending on your trip, you could be travelling in a modern air-conditioned coach or mini-buses, or tourist train.
Importantly we own all of our coaches, meaning we can be sure they are well serviced and of a high standard. The quality of all other types of transport has been thoroughly checked and verified by our local offices to ensure they meet our specific requirements. All transport is included in your trip price, and will ensure you arrive at each destination feeling refreshed and ready to explore.
HEALTH AND SAFETY
We want to make sure you’re having the time of your life while travelling with us. Therefore, if you suffer from any kind of medical condition or allergies, we will need to know at the time of booking, or at least 2 weeks prior to the departure of your Short Inca Trail in Peru.
If you require regular medication, you must have a sufficient supply before your trip departs, as it may be difficult to obtain while travelling. You must be able to administer your own medication.
Strict food and water hygiene is essential to avoid diarrhoea. Make sure food has been properly prepared, drink only boiled or bottled water and keep in mind that ice will likely come from tap water. Also take precautions against insect bites and sunburn. During the hot summer months it is advisable to carry bottled water in your day-pack at all times.
If you are arriving a few days before the start of your trip, please be advised not to accept offers from people to visit specialty shops or to take guided tours. These people are not associated with SUNRISE PERU TREK and therefore we can’t be responsible for the service you receive from them. Your SUNRISE PERU TREK trip includes professional guides who will accompany you to all the sites mentioned in your itinerary.
Should you encounter any difficulties meeting your transfer from the airport to the starting hotel, depending on which country you are in you can contact a SUNRISE PERU TREK representative on the following:
- Mauro Pedraza – Operations Manager
Mobile: +(51) 984 734633
- Henrry Chauca – Operations
Mobile: +(51) 950 313131
- Sharon Ovalle – SUNRISE PERU TREK Representatives Supervisor
Mobile: +(51) 974 359484
IN CASES OF EMERGENCY
While we hope you never have to use it, if for any reason you need to contact someone from SUNRISE PERU TREK, whether it be that you have missed a trip departure meeting, have become separated from your trip on the road or any other unforeseeable problem, the following options are available to you.
- Cusco Office
Your best recourse to assistance during the day is to call our team between 8am-9pm Monday to Friday and 9.30am-4pm.
Telf: +51 84 237404
- Emergency Contact
If you need to contact SUNRISE PERU TREK outside of the above hours the following number is available:
Mobile: +(51) 984 734633
Remember if it is a genuine emergency, we of course want you to call us; however, if it can wait until the next day, we ask that you call during our office hours.