The Sacred Valley and Lares Adventure to Machu Picchu—a journey through the ancient history, living culture, and magnificent landscapes of Cusco and the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Expert guides will tailor your individual experience from a daily list of adventure activities and cultural exploration options. Then, as breathtaking sunsets paint the Andean sky at the end of each exciting day, you will settle into our signature mountain lodges to enjoy exceptional Peruvian cuisine and top-notch accommodations.
Day 0: City of Cusco Pre Trek Briefing (read notes in Inclusion)
Day 1: Cusco - Sacred Valley - Exploring Pisaq
Day 2: Lares Valley - Inca Sites and Villages
Day 3: Sacred Valley - Hiking Among authentic Inca Trails
Day 4: Sacred Valley - Discovering Ollantaytambo and train to Machu Picchu
Day 5: Visit Machu Picchu Sanctuary before returning to Cusco in the afternoon
Tailor-made suggestions for this itinerary:
* Stopover in the cultural Cusco and stay at some of the beautiful boutique hotels we have to offer. Ask us about our 3 night Pre and Post Cusco Package which includes a comprehensive Cusco City Tour and more.
* Choose from our range of deluxe to luxury cruises to the Galapagos Islands
* Extend your stay in Peru and explore some of its other highlights including Arequipa, the Colca Canyon and Lake Titicaca
* Add in a 3 or 4 day trip to an Amazon lodge or upgrade to an Amazon Luxury Cruise
Cusco - Sacred Valley - Exploring Pisaq
After an early breakfast, your MLP guide and driver will pick you up from your hotel in Cusco to begin your journey from the busy streets of Cusco to the Sacred Valley of the Incas, full of lush green fields surrounded by striking mountain peaks. Start your day with either an invigorating hike from the village of Amaru to the community of Viacha, or a visit to the Awanakancha textile center followed by an exploration of the lively town and colorful artisan marketplace of Pisaq. Midday, both cultural explorers and hikers will reunite to enjoy exclusive access to the remote community of Viacha to learn about Andean artisanal farming and enjoy a traditional Pachamanca lunch. Afterwards, either hike or drive to the Pisaq archaeological site, an afternoon excursion that offers the unique opportunity to explore the complex free of crowds.
Cultural (morning): Excursion to Awanakancha for an introduction to traditional Andean textile weaving techniques and an up-close visit with some friendly llamas, alpacas, and vicuñas, all camelids indigenous to both this region and other high-altitude regions throughout Peru. Next, visit the town of Pisaq for a brief tour and time explore the unique goods for sale in its colorful artisan marketplace.
EXPLORING PISAQ (cont.)
Active (morning): Hike from the village of Amaru to the community of Viacha. Approximately 3 hours Moderate 14,200’ / 4,328 m ⁄
All-Group Activity: Traditional Pachmanca lunch and demonstration of Andean farming practices with the locals, followed by an optional hike (or drive) and guided exploration of the Pisaq archaeological site.
Meals: L (Viacha), D (Lamay Lodge)
Overnight: Lamay Lodge (9,705’ / 2,958m)
Lares Valley - Inca Sites and Villages
The day begins with a visit to the small town of Lamay followed by a scenic drive into the heart of the Lares Valley. Your first stop will be Ancasmarca for a guided tour of this seldom-visited archaeological site. Afterwards, choose a visit with the expert textile weavers in the remote village of Choquecancha or a hike amidst turquoise blue lakes and towering peaks to the remote village of Huacahuasi, where both groups meet again to spend the night. Huacahuasi Lodge is operated by both MLP staff and members of the local community through a joint venture aimed at protecting the area’s cultural heritage and natural environment– a partnership that demonstrates the evolving role of traditional Andean communities in both the culture and commerce of modern-day Cusco.
All-Group Cultural Activity (morning): Explore the town of Lamay and visit the archaeological site of Ancasmarca.
Cultural (afternoon): Visit to the remote village of Choquecancha where you will have the opportunity to meet the locals and learn from the community’s expert textile weavers.
Option A: Hike from Quelquena to Huacahuasi Approximately 2.5 hours Easy to moderate 14,200’ / 4,328 m
Option B: Hike from Cuncani to Huacahuasi Approximately 4 hours Moderate 13,838´ / 4,219 m
Meals: B (Lamay Lodge), L (Cultural – Choquecancha; Active – Box lunch en route), D (Huacahuasi Lodge)
Overnight: Huacahuasi Lodge (12,585’ / 3,835m)
Sacred Valley - Hiking Among authentic Inca Trails
Begin the day with a scenic drive to the community of Huilloc. From there, choose a morning hike from the village of Huilloc to the historic ruins of Pumamarka, or an extended visit to Huilloc and the nearby sheepherding community of Marcacocha before regrouping for lunch and a midday exploration of the Pumamarka ruins. After lunch, choose to hike from Pumamarka to Ollantaytambo or drive and spend the afternoon exploring Ollantaytambo’s maze-like alleys and passageways.
Note: Afternoon hikers will meet the rest of the group at the hotel upon arrival in the Sacred Valley. Sacred Valley & Lares Adventure
Cultural: Visit the village of Huilloc and community of Marcacocha to participate in a traditional Andean ceremony to honor Pachamama (Mother Earth) and her blessings for the health of the community livestock. Continue on to Pumamarka for an all-group tour of the archaeological site and picnic lunch. After lunch, explore the farming terraces on your way to Ollantaytambo. ⁄ Active
• Morning: Hike from Huilloc to Pumamarka. Approximately 3 hours Moderate
• Afternoon: Hike from Pumamarka to Ollantaytambo. Approximately 3 hours Moderate ⁄ Optional
All-Group Activity (late afternoon): Visit a locally sourced Sacred Valley craft brewery (subject to additional cost).
Meals: B (Huacahuasi Lodge, L (Pumamarka), D (Kuychi Rumi Lodge)
Overnight: Kuychi Rumi Lodge (9,284’ / 2,830m)
Sacred Valley - Discovering Ollantaytambo and train to Machu Picchu
Begin your day with an optional early morning hike to the Inca storage houses high above the town for an impressive view of the Ollantaytambo fortress and ceremonial site. Afterwards, the entire group will meet at the entrance of the site for a guided tour before embarking on a scenic train ride to Aguas Calientes, followed by your first visit to Machu Picchu in the afternoon. Alternately, opt for an all-day hike from train marker KM 104 to the Machu Picchu Sun Gate on the classic Inca Trail (subject to additional cost).
Active (early morning):
• Option A: Hike up Lower Pinkuylluna Mountain above Ollantaytambo Approximately 1.5 hours Moderate
• Option B: Hike up Pinkuylluna Mountain above Ollantaytambo Approximately 2.5 hours Moderate to challenging
All-Group Cultural Activity (morning): Guided exploration of the Ollantaytambo archeological site.
Optional: Afternoon visit to the Machu Picchu citadel. ⁄
Optional*: Hike on the classic Inca Trail, from KM 104 to the Sun Gate at Machu Picchu. (Subject to availability and additional cost) Approximately 6 hours Moderate to challenging
*Note: Replaces the standard program day itinerary; this activity must be booked upon confirmation of your Sacred Valley and Lares Adventure departure date in order to secure the necessary permits.
Meals: B (Kuychi Rumi Lodge), L (Box lunch on the train), D (Inkaterra Pueblo Hotel)
Overnight: Inkaterra Pueblo Hotel, Aguas Calientes (6,232´ / 1,900m)
Visit Machu Picchu Sanctuary before returning to Cusco in the afternoon
After breakfast at the hotel, you will once again have to opportunity to visit Machu Picchu for a two-hour guided tour of the citadel. After the tour, you will have free time to explore on your own or hike up Huayna Picchu*, the iconic mountain that looms over the citadel, or Machu Picchu Mountain** for dramatic views that stretch from the Urubamba River Valley to the edge of the Amazon Jungle. After the visit you will have lunch in Aguas Calientes before the return train ride to Ollantaytambo (approximately 1.5 hours) and a scenic sunset drive back to your hotel in Cusco (approximately 1.5 hours). As night falls and you arrive amidst the hustle and bustle of the city, you will be touched by a feeling of peace and rejuvenation that will linger long after your journey home.
*Entrance time - Huayna Picchu: 10:30am *Note: Permits for Huayna Picchu are subject to availability; please consult with your MLP travel specialist when you confirm your reservation.
**Note: In the event that Huayna Picchu permits are not available for your desired date, Machu Picchu Mountain (the second peak within the sanctuary) permits will be secured instead.
All-Group Cultural Activity (morning): Guided exploration of the Machu Picchu citadel (7,872’ / 2,400m).
Cultural (late morning): Free time for further exploration.
Active (late morning): Hike up Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain. Approximately 2.5 hours Moderate to challenging 8,924’ / 2,720 m
Meals: B and L (Inkaterra Pueblo Hotel)
Situated at the edge of the quaint village of Lamay in the Sacred Valley of the Incas, 2,941m above sea-level, the lodge blends traditional heritage with original contemporary design and is just an hour out of Cusco. The large garden on the grounds is the centre of activities and an excellent place to soak the Andean Mountain views. The large Jacuzzi is an ideal place to relax at the end of a long day of adventuring.
There are 8 rooms each with a private bathroom and either a small terrace or patio. The restaurant and briefing area are on the ground floor and look out onto the lodge’s garden, where alpacas help to keep the grass short.
Built into the side of a valley and perched high above the tiny village of Huacahuasi, 3,800m above sea level. This lodge boasts spectacular views of the the Andes. The atmosphere reflects the spirit of the mountains and history of the region, and integrates local architecture with modern decor.
The lodge has 8 rooms, each with a private bathroom and terrace with seating and a (small) personal Jacuzzis for soaking up the scenrey.The rest of the lodge is open plan and has a restaurant, bar and communal outdoor hot tub.
The women working at the lodge are from the local Huacahuasi community and dress in traditional (and extremely colourful!) clothes.
Kuychi Rumi Lodge
Kuychi Rumi offers exclusive lodging and is located in Urubamba. It consists of seven luxurious and individually designed rustic rooms surrounded by beautiful gardens and native fruit orchards. The property is nestled at the foot of some of the most picturesque mountain peaks in all of Peru and is within a short distance from the Urubamba River. Other nearby historical sites and cities include Pisac, Ollantaytambo, chinchero, Maras, Paucartambo and Manu National Park. Our personalised service allows guests to relax and unwind from their day.
All rooms are individually decorated with private bathroom.
Decorated with Andean tapestries, this hotel is supremely serene and cozy, yet full of breathtaking wonder. Inkaterra Pueblo Machu Picchu is located in Aguas Coliente and is just a short distance from the bustling pedestrian-only town of Machu Picchu Pueblo (Aguas Calientes). This is a sanctuary in every sense.
The vibrant culture of the Andes is ever-present here, in the architecture, the tasteful carvings and textiles, the delicious cuisine, and the mystical vestiges of the Inca.
There is a restaurant that that offers Andean cuisine overlooking the Vilcanota River and all rooms offer private bathroom with free wifi.
- Accommodation with private facilities
- Hotel taxes
- English-speaking guided tours
- Entrance fees to tourist and archeological sites (Includes one day entrance to Machu Picchu and a permit to entry Huayna Picchu).
- Meals as specified
- Selected beverages
- Hotel gratuities
What’s not included?
- International and internal airfares
- Arrival/departure taxes or reciprocity fees, visa fees where applicable
- Optional activities
- Travel insurance
- Gratuities for guides
- Any items not mentioned as included
DAY 0 | CITY OF CUSCO / TRIP BRIEFING
Meet your MLP guide and fellow travelers for a general trip briefing and Q&A. Time: 6pm Location: Hotel El Mercado, Property Address: Calle 7 Cuartones 306, Centro Histórico de Cusco. Duration: Approximately 45 minutes
Altitude & Acclimatisation:
- We recommend that our guests spend at least two nights in Cusco prior to departure. This helps with acclimating to the altitude and also provides an opportunity to explore the beautiful city of Cusco. Everyone’s tolerance to altitude differs and we encourage our guests to make exercise and a healthy diet a part of their training program before their trip.
- We encourage our guests to prepare by exercising regularly and having a healthy, balanced diet prior to the trip.
- Requested Single Room: 25% supplement of the retail cost per person
- If a guest is a single willing to share, we will do our best to pair up the guest with another traveler of the same gender
- In case ultimately no roommate is found then the guest would only be subject to a 25% supplement of the retail cost per person