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Choquequirao - the worthy goal of the Choquequirao trek

The Choquequirao TrekPeru

If you’re a serious hiker and interested in seeing a real lost Inca city before the tourist hordes, then the Choquequirao trek is for you. It’s a tough walk, steeply down into and up out of the Apurimac Canyon, with a serious reward: Choquequirao, the mysterious “cradle of gold” that many consider a more spectacular experience than Machu Picchu.

Start:

Cusco, Peru

End:

Cusco, Peru

Maximum group size:

12 Guests

Duration:

3 4 days

Price:

US$ 750

Includes:

oCulture & Food zOutdoors FHike

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4

The trip in detail

A very early start and a four-hour drive (we’ll eat breakfast on the way) bring us to Capuliyoc (2,900m/9,500ft), right on the edge of the Apurimac Canyon. The spectacular scenery starts right away, with snowcapped peaks like Padrayoc and Wayna Cachora around us, and the stunning Apurimac valley below.

The steep descent towards that valley starts right away too. We’ll spend around four hours hiking down to the bottom of the canyon. The change in terrain and vegetation, as we descend dramatically to cross the Apurimac River at 1,550m/5,100ft, is fascinating.

We’ll then do a couple of hours of the climb out of the canyon, up to our campsite for the night, Santa Rosa (2,100m/6,900ft). Trekking this far today makes for a long day but makes tomorrow easier!

Meals: Lunch and dinner included

Accommodation: Camping

Walking: 16km (10 miles)

Minimum Altitude: 1,550m (5,100ft)

Maximum Altitude: 2,900m (9,500ft)

Altitude of camp: 2,100m (6,900ft)

We’ll start the day with its toughest section, the three-hour climb to Marampata, through hot and humid conditions: that’s the bad news. The good news is the orchids, bromeliads, begonias, hummingbirds and general lush abundance that characterise this area and make just being here a pleasure.

The last couple of hours of the hike are an enjoyable, relatively gently undulating stretch that brings us to Choquequirao itself! There’s time for exploring the nearby farming terraces, then spotting condors rising on the gorge’s thermals as the sun sets – a magical way to spend the evening!

Meals: All meals included

Accommodation: Camping

Walking: 13km (8 miles)

Minimum Altitude: 2,100m (6,900ft)

Maximum Altitude: 3,050m (10,000ft)

Altitude of camp: 3,050m (10,000ft)

The Inca city of Choquequirao is bigger than Machu Picchu (though far less has been uncovered), and believed to have served a similar purpose as a holy royal city. Like Machu Picchu, its setting is incredibly scenic – in this case, perched on a promontory a kilometre above the gorge below. Your guide will show you around this morning before leading you on the trek back down to the Apurimac River in the afternoon.

Meals: All meals included

Accommodation: Camping

Walking: 13km (8 miles)

Minimum Altitude: 2,100m (6,900ft)

Maximum Altitude: 3,050m (10,000ft)

Altitude of camp: 2,100m (6,900ft)

A slog out of the canyon, retracing our steps to Capuliyoc, and a four-hour drive bring us back to Cusco this afternoon, tired but happy!

Meals: Breakfast and lunch included

Walking: 16km (10 miles)

Minimum Altitude: 2,100m (6,900ft)

Maximum Altitude: 2,900m (9,500ft)

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How much does this trip cost?

US $

750

pp.


for a group of four to 12 people


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WHAT'S INCLUDED

  • Tent accommodation (based on twin share. Single Supplement available for US$50)
  • Pick up from and drop off at your accommodation in Cusco
  • Dedicated Aspiring Adventures guide
  • Entrance to Choquequirao
  • All meals as specified in itinerary
  • Drinking water days 2-4 (please bring your own for day 1)

WHAT'S NOT INCLUDED

  • Tips for your guide, cook and horsemen
  • Sleeping bag and sleeping mat (bring your own or hire from us – add US$40/item)
  • Horse to carry your personal gear (add US$60)

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