LARES VALLEY TO MACHU PICCHU 4 DAYS / 3 NIGHT
Hiking to the native community of the Lares Valley is a wonderful trek and an unforgettable experience. Lares is the name of a small village on the highlands, north of Cusco city, to arrive there we need to make a nice trekking tour, that'll also be called LARES. We start on the Sacred Valley of the Incas in Huaran and climb inside a narrow valley, there you will have the opportunity to see thatched stone houses surrounded by herds of llamas and alpacas. Inside the houses you will see some guinea pigs running loose. The Lares Trek, takes place on a hidden valley that very few outsiders have ever heard of or entered. This unforgettable and less-known hike combines amazing mountain scenery, glacier lagoons, valley cloud-forest and authentic textile Quechua communities to end up in the village of LARES, where you will enjoy its fabulous hot springs. A unique hike to get in touch with Andean people and learn about their traditions and life-style. Day 01: Cusco – Huacacasi - Lares’ Hot Baths – Huaca Wasi. We’ll leave early in the morning by bus from Cusco. During the transport we’ll pass a lot of archaeological remains, local handcraft-markets as well as large tracks of cultivated lands inside the Sacred Valley of the Incas. The Sacred Valley is one of the most fertile places in South America with one of the best products such as maize which is the first export-product of this area. Halfway the Sacred Valley we’ll enter in the province of Calca (2940m) where we’ll change roads and ride up to the highest part of this trek called Huacacasi (4400m). After this pass we’ll be going down to the little populated Lares Valley (3250m). A few moments later we’ll arrive at the hot medicinal springs of Lares (3200m). Here we’ll have time to enjoy each bath with different natural charms and temperatures between 28 and 34 degrees Celsius. After lunch at the hot baths we’ll start hiking until Huaca Wasi (3600m) where we’ll camp for the night. Our transport-time will be around 5 hours. Our trekking time will be about 3 hours in a rather cold climate. Day 02: Huaca Wasi – Abra Ipsay – Patacancha This will be the hardest day because of the altitude-level. The pass we’ll have to cross is called Abra Ipsay and is situated at 4400meters high. It will take us about 4 hours to hike up there at a gentle pace. While hiking we’ll pass local communities that throughout the years hold on to their ancestral way of living and Andean traditions. They have a large knowledge of natural agriculture and ancient ways of working textile so that their colorful clothes are unique in the Lares-Valley. After the pass we’ll continue our journey downwards until our campsite next to the small village of Patacancha (3650m). Our trekking-time will be about 7 hours in a cold climate. Day 03: Patacancha – Willoq – Pumamarca – Ollantaytambo – Aguas Calientes Another day of hiking where we’ll pass local communities and small villages such as Willoq (3400m), Pumamarca (3200m) and many others. From Patacancha through the landscape, crossing these villages we can taste the traditions and habits passed on by our ancestors throughout the times of the Tahuatinsuyo Empire (the Inca-culture and traditions). After a couple of hours hiking and visiting the land we’ll arrive at Ollantaytambo (2850m) that speaks from its archeological sites, a wide story of Andean history and anthropology of these times. From Ollantaytambo we’ll take the train to Aguas Calientes (2050m), the touristical town build beneath the ruins of Machu Picchu where we’ll spend the night in a hotel. Day 04: Aguas Calientes – Machu Picchu – Cusco After an early rise and breakfast we’ll take the first bus up to the archeological complex of Machu Picchu (2400m). A few moments later we’ll enter this untouched Inca-sanctuary to have a guided tour with a professional guide. After this tour that will last for about two hours you’ll have plenty of time to wonder around the ruins by yourself…And for the bravest among us there is always the ascension to Huayna Picchu or the nearby Temple of the Moon. We’ll all meet afterwards to go down to Aguas Calientes (2050m) where we’ll take our train back to Cusco. Daily Departures: Departures are available along the year although due to weather conditions, the recommended period for this trek is April to November. Our Service Includes: Transport from Cusco to the Lares-Valley English speaking professional guide (2 guides for groups over 8 people) Horsemen and horses that carry camping equipment and food Cook and cooking equipment Excellent food (3 breakfasts, 3 lunches and 3 dinners) Camping equipment (tents, mattresses, dining tent, tables, stools) Hostal in Aguas Calientes Train from Ollantaytambo to Aguas Calientes Train from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo Bus from Ollantaytambo to Cusco Entrance-fee to Machu Picchu First-Aid-kit and oxygen bottle Not included is: Sleeping bag Entrance fee for the Hot Springs in Lares Tips: please beware that our agency staff are paid so please feel free to tip or not according to your wish YOU SHOULD BRING: A small backpack with a change of clothes for the whole period of the trek Rain gear (jacket and pants if available) Strong footwear, waterproof trekking boots recommended Warm clothes, including jacket, fleeces. Thermal clothing is also recommended, especially for sleeping. A down jacket is especially recommended for this trek since it runs at high altitude and temperatures may easily drop below freezing in the evening and at nights Sleeping bag (it can be hired at our agency for US$ 3.00 per day) Flashlight and batteries Camera, films and batteries (batteries consume more quickly under cold conditions) Sun block After-sun cream or hydrating cream for face and body Toilet paper Snacks: biscuits, energy bars, chocolate, raw fruits, muesli, etc. Please beware that we provide a daily morning snack and our meal service is very complete and well supplied. This recommendation applies for all clients being used to a specific snack, as it may happen that it is not included in our selection water sterilizing tablets in case you pick up water from streams or rivers along the route. Otherwise, we provide filtered boiled water, which is safe to drink and has not reported any health problem so far Small towel Swimsuit (if you intend take a dip at the hot springs along the route) Cash in soles and/or US$ Optional: walking sticks