Panoramic view of Machu Picchu with a passenger from the Cusco Expeditions company

Ancascocha Trek & Inca Trail Short

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5 Days / 4 Nights
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from US$850
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Max. Altitude
4650 m / 15255 ft
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Group Size
Up to 12 people
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Camps & Hostel
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Moderate to Challenging
  • Rayán
  • Abra Kuychiccasa
  • Chancachuco Valley
  • Ancascocha
  • Paucarcancha
  • Wiñay Wayna
  • Machu Picchu

Ancascocha Trek & Inca Trail Short 5 Days

On this 5-day itinerary, we have combined the most spectacular highlights of Ancascocha with an incredible 2-day Trek on the famous Inca Trail. Spending our first three days on Ancascocha, far from the beaten path and the typical tourist trails, you will be treated to irresistible vistas of the majestic snow-capped The Andes. We will walk amongst well-preserved ruins, marveling at the ancient tribes' engineering feats, and we will pass remote communities who still live and work simply as they have for many generations.

  • Overview
  • Itinerary
  • Inclusions
  • Before You Go
  • Pricing
  • Enquire Now

At Cusco Expeditions, your safety, fun, and comfort will always be our main concern. Therefore, your guide will ensure that the excursion's pace is adjusted to each group member. They will take a break whenever necessary. Our camps will be ready before your arrival. Remember that we only use high-quality equipment to ensure your maximum comfort. We are incredibly proud of our kitchen team. Our chef and assistant will surprise you with the delights they can make in the middle of the mountain. You'll never go hungry because the menu is specially designed to ensure you have enough energy for each day of hiking.

Briefing before the excursion

You’ll have an informative meeting with your guide 1 or 2 days before the start of your walk. This meeting will take place at our offices in Cusco. Take this opportunity to ask any questions you have and get ready, the adventure is about to begin!

Remember that we’ll provide you with a duffle bag for you to place your personal luggage in and which is transported without problems by our horses during the trek.

Itinerary at a Glance

  • Day 0

    Pre-Departure Briefing


  • Day 1

    Cusco | Soqma - Rayán - Abra Kuychiccasa - Chancachuco Valley

  • Day 2

    Chancachuco Valley | Ancascocha - Abra Huayanay - Quesqa Valley

  • Day 3

    Quesqa Valley | Paucarcancha - Km 82 – Ollantaytambo.

  • Day 4

    Ollantaytambo | KM 104 - Wiñay Wayna - Machu Picchu

  • Day 5

    The Most important day – Machu Picchu!

Why Take the Ancascocha Trek & Inca Trail Short ?

  • Arrive at Machu Picchu on foot via the Gate of the Sun.
  • Exploring the famous and lesser-known Inca sites with your knowledgeable local guide
  • Relaxing each night at a comfortable hotel
  • Following in the footsteps of the Incas on your trek to Machu Picchu
  • The Ancascocha route is one of the least known, less crowded, excursions among Cusco's tourist circuits.
  • National Geographic declared Ancascocha Trek as one of the 20 dreams walks on its list of the world's best walks.
Day 1

Cusco | Soqma - Rayán - Abra Kuychiccasa - Chancachuco Valley

We'll pick you up from your hotel very early in the morning, and we'll travel for 2 hours to Soqma (3,205 masl / 10,512 fasl), the starting point of our trek. Our vans are comfortable; we'll also provide blankets if you want to enjoy a few more minutes of sleep.

After meeting the porters and horse riders, our trek will begin 2 hours to the Perolniyoc waterfall. You'll have the opportunity to get to the base of the waterfall to cool off. You can also stay on the road and take amazing pictures.

After half an hour, we'll arrive at the Inca archaeological site of Perolniyoc, built on a cliff with spectacular views of the surrounding valley. All our guides are experts in Inca history, so quality information is guaranteed. We'll also have lunch there, and, for the first time, you'll taste the exquisite food prepared by our team.

The afternoon will begin with a 3-hour ascent to the Kuychiccasa pass (4,450 masl / 14,599 fasl). During the journey, we'll observe cultivation fields, alpacas, and, if you're lucky, the flight of a condor, all the while with the snowy peaks of the Andes in the background.

We don't need to rush to get to the top. We'll take a break together while enjoying the Chancachuco Valley and the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Forty-five minutes downhill takes us to our camp in the Chancachuco valley (4,312 masl / 14,147 fasl). Here you can warm up and, if you wish, lie down for a moment under the sky to watch the stars appear before enjoying the delicious dinner.

  • Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
  • Accommodation:  Camps
  • Difficulty:  Challenging
  • Walking Distance:  9.9 miles
  • Minimum Elevation:  3205 m / 10512 ft
  • Highest Elevation:  4450 m / 14599 ft
Day 2

Chancachuco Valley | Ancascocha - Abra Huayanay - Quesqa Valley

We’ll wake you up with a hot cup of tea or coffee, and then you can enjoy a hearty breakfast that will fill you with energy to continue our adventure.

We’ll walk for 45 minutes along an undulating path followed by a 20-minute ascent where you can delight in the beautiful views of Verónica Mountain (5,822 masl / 19,100 fasl).

Then, we’ll descend for 3 hours to the community of Ancascocha (3,700 masl / 12,139 fasl), and we’ll cross a small, but beautiful, wooded valley traversed by a crystalline stream.

We’ll continue with a 1-hour ascent that will reward you with stunning views of the surrounding glaciers, well-preserved Inca archaeological sites, and the brilliant blue of the Ancascocha Lagoon.

We’ll ascend for 2 hours to the highest point of the trek after lunch: the Huayanay pass (4,650 masl / 15,255 fasl). On this day, you’ll get to know a section of the original Inca Trail.

The walk from here is much more comfortable. We’ll gradually descend to our camp in the Quesqa Valley (3,850 masl / 12,631 fasl). Now all that remains is to relax and enjoy the delicious dinner prepared by our chef.

  • Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
  • Accommodation:  Camps
  • Difficulty:  Challenging
  • Walking Distance:  11.1 miles
  • Altitude of the camp:  4650 m / 15255 ft
  • Highest Elevation:  3700 m / 12139 ft
Day 3

Quesqa Valley | Paucarcancha - Km 82 – Ollantaytambo.

On the last day of the trek, we’ll descend from the Quesqa Valley for 2 hours to the Inca site of Paucarcancha (3,133 masl / 10,278 fasl). At this altitude, the vegetation is green and lush. From there, it’s possible to appreciate the track of the Inca Trail in the distance and the remote communities of the Quesqa Valley. Upon arrival in Paucarcancha, you’ll have a guided tour to understand the mysteries of that place.

We’ll then make a 6-hour descent through a section of the Classic Inca Trail heading to Km 82 (the known starting point of the Inca Trail). We’ll have lunch there. You’ll be able to appreciate the archaeological site of Llactapata on the way.

Later, we will transfer you to Ollantaytambo (2,792 masl / 9,160 fasl); you’ll check-in at your hotel to rest until dinner. If you still have energy left, you can visit the Ollantaytambo Town, a great place to relax. Later, we’ll enjoy dinner in an excellent restaurant. Remember to go to bed early because our trip to Inca Trail and Machu Picchu will start before sunrise.

  • Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
  • Accommodation:  Hostel
  • Difficulty:  Moderate
  • Walking Distance:  9.3 miles
  • Minimum Elevation:  2040 m / 6692 ft
  • Highest Elevation:  3850 m / 12631 ft
Day 4

Ollantaytambo | KM 104 - Wiñay Wayna - Machu Picchu

After an early breakfast at your hotel, the pick-up time will be around 6 AM to transfer you to the nearby train station. The train journey is stunning and provides yet another unique perspective of the surrounding mountains and countryside. You carve along the valley floor in the early daylight for almost 2 hours until reaching Kilometer 104, where we will start our amazing trek on the historic Inca Trail! We begin our adventure by hiking uphill for about four hours until we reach the Wiñay Wayna archeological site. There, we will enjoy a packed lunch as we gaze up at the towering mountains, which nestle the area between tall trees and deep valleys.

Next, we will continue our hike, moving toward Inti Punku (the Sun Gate). From this point, we will be able to look down and admire the magnificent beauty of the Inca citadel Machu Picchu! This would have also been the grand Inca’s first view of Machu Picchu as he traveled from Cusco. Here, the Inca Trail officially ends.

We will finish our first day’s adventure following the lateral trail down towards Machu Picchu, from where we will take a bus to the town of Aguas Calientes at the base of the mountain. We will have dinner there and then rest comfortably at a hostel.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Box Lunch, and dinner.
  • Accommodation:  Hostel
  • Difficulty:  Moderate
  • Walking Distance:  8 miles
  • Minimum Elevation:  2040 m / 6692 ft
  • Highest Elevation:  2720 m / 2720 ft
Day 5

The Most Important day – Machu Picchu!

Today we arrive at our trek's long-awaited finale, one of the New 7 Wonders of the World and a UNESCO World Heritage Site – Machu Picchu! We will wake up early after a refreshing night at our hostel to beat the crowds to the top of Machu Picchu and enjoy its serenity in the soft morning light. The Machu Picchu entrance checkpoint is open from 06:00 AM until 5:00 PM. We will take the bus to Machupicchu and enter the hidden Royal Citadel of the Incas. Here we will have a 2-hour guided tour through this incredible ancient city and visit temples, terraces, palaces, priest's houses, the sundial, the industrial sector, and the farming fields.

After this tour, feel free to climb up to Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain (Be sure to book these tickets in advance). Each mountain takes approximately 3 hours to hike up and down. Another lower-impact option for which you do not need an extra ticket is to trek to the Sun Gate, the main entrance from the Inca Trail (this takes about 2 or 2.5 hours round-trip). Another option is walking to see the Incan Bridge. You will be able to stay and enjoy this magical city for more than 5 hours before hiking back down to Aguas Calientes to catch the train at 16:22 hrs (subject to availability) to Ollantaytambo. A private bus will pick up our group and drop you off at your hotel in Cusco at about 20:00 hrs. Rest your feet and your body now because we can assure you your heart will still be soaring for weeks and years to come!.

  • Meals: Breakfast.
  • Difficulty:  Easy / Challenging
  • Minimum Elevation:  2040 m / 6691 ft
  • Highest Elevation:  2440 m / 8052 ft

Cusco Expeditions specified the included/non-included services under all the tour itineraries listed on our website. We take care of all the logistics, but please pay attention to the details. For specific programs, maybe some items are different, please read carefully before booking with us.

What Is Included?

  • High Quality Service & Safety

  • Pre-departure briefing

    You will meet your guide and group in our office for an orientation before your trek. At this time, we will provide you with the duffle bags which will be carried by our horses. The meeting will be at 6:00 PM the evening before the trip begins.

  • Experienced Guide

    English speaking, professionally educated, and official tour guide. Your guide will explain the culture and surroundings along the entire route, including leading your group in ancient ceremonies! He or she will keep you safe, sound, and comfortable on your trek so that you can enjoy your time worry-free!

  • Camping Equipment

    You’ll have a spacious dining and kitchen tents where you can enjoy your food without problems. In addition, tables, chairs, and cooking equipment (all carried by the horses).

  • Medical Kit

    Our crew will bring a first-aid kit, including emergency oxygen bottle

  • Customer Service 24/7

    We have telephone service available 24 hours/day for ease of communication and preparation with the agency leading up to your trek.

  • Accommodation

  • Personal Tents:

    Cusco Expeditions uses the best equipment to ensure your safety and comfort. Every 2 people will share Eureka Timberline tents or Mountain Hard Wear with capacity for 4 people. .

  • Hostel in Ollantaytambo

    The Third night of this trek is spent in a hostel in Ollantaytambo.

  • Hostel in Aguas Calientes

    The last night of this trek is spent in a hostel in Aguas Calientes.

  • Meals

  • Meals: 5 Breakfasts, 4 Lunches, 4 Dinners

    Our chef prepares the best dishes in the middle of the mountain. Our passengers love our food! We respect all diets, so let us know if you have any particular restrictions on your reservation form and remind your guide during the briefing. You’ll enjoy breakfast, lunch, and dinner, in addition to hot drinks and snacks. Every morning we’ll give you your snack so you can enjoy it during the walk. Remember that your last lunch and dinner is not included.

  • Wake up tea

    Every morning at the campsite, you will wake up with a cup of coca tea! Our staff will bring the tea to your tent so that you will be warmed from inside out before you start your day.

  • Tea time or Happy Hour

    Every afternoon before dinner, the cooks will provide popcorn, biscuits, coffee, hot chocolate, teas, hot water, etc. After a long day of hiking, you will not have to wait until dinner to relax, warm-up, and enjoy a bite to eat!

  • Boiled Water

    From the first lunch to the last breakfast, Cusco Expeditions will provide you with all the water you need. We will provide boiled water, filtered, and cooled. You need to bring a camel bag or an empty bottle. We recommend a capacity of 2 liters. You’ll be able to fill your bottles during each meal.

  • Snacks on the trail daily

    Before starting your trekking, our tour leader will provide you a Cloth bag with local fruits, biscuits, chocolate, caramels, etc. We will give this snack to you at the beginning of each day in your cloth bag.

  • One cloth snack bag per person

    To avoid the usage of plastic bags that contaminate our environment, we will give you a cloth bag for your snacks.

  • Products for hygiene

    You will be provided with a small towel before each meal to clean your hands.

  • Transportation & Tickets

  • Transport

    Day 1: You will be picked up from your hotel in the morning and will travel by private transportation to Soqma, the starting point of the trek.

    Day 5: Private transport from Ollantaytambo train station to your hotel in Cusco.

  • Train tickets

    Day 4: From Ollantaytambo to KM 104(Starting point of the Inca Trail).

    Day 5: From Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo.

  • Permits for Inca Trail

    As soon as we receive your complete information and the deposit that secures your reservation, we’ll buy all the necessary permits (subject to availability). These permits are issued for a specific date and will be in your name. They cannot be changed under any circumstances. Change of passport number is only allowed for renewal reasons. In that case you must bring both your old and new passport.

  • Entry ticket to Machu Picchu Archeological Site

  • From Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu (One way)

  • EXTRAS included in our service.

  • We believe that attention to small details is what sets us apart from other local companies. You’ll receive a small sleeping pillow, a foam mattress, a cover to protect your backpack on the road, and a rain poncho.

  • Satellite phones:

    Our main priority will always be the tranquillity of our clients. While all of our guides are prepared for emergencies in the mountains, being a phone call away from any doctor, hospital, or friend helps you feel more secure. Each Cusco Expeditions guides has a satellite phone that can be used anywhere on the mountain to call anywhere in the world. You can also use it even if it’s not an emergency.

  • Cargo Mules:

    On days 1,2, and 3, cargo mules carry all camping equipment and your allowance of personal baggage (7 kgs/15.4 lbs). There is no additional fee for this.

What Is Not Included?

  • Extras and important equipment.

    All our travelers need a sleeping bag to camp. Inflatable mattresses and walking sticks (with rubber tips) are optional but highly recommended. If you do not have them, don’t worry, you can rent them with Cusco Expeditions:

    • Sleeping bag: US $ 20.00

    • Inflatable mattress: US $ 20.00

    • Walking poles (pair): US $ 20.00

  • Huayna Picchu

    You can climb the famous mountain that’s always seen in the photos, behind the archaeological site of Machu Picchu. It’s 45 minutes uphill. Going down can be scary if you fear heights. You can take this excursion once your guided tour to Machu Picchu ends. The additional cost is US $ 30.00. The permit must be issued at least 1 month in advance due to high demand. To protect your integrity, there may be changes due to weather conditions.

  • Day 5: Lunch and Dinner in Aguas Calientes

  • Travel Insurance

  • Tips for our staff

    Tips are usual on any excursion to Machu Picchu. Although we pay good salaries to our entire team, something extra is always welcome, especially considering the hard work they do. Typically, group participants collect their tips to hand out to the porters and chefs together.

  • Additional costs or delays out of control of the management

    Landscape, bad weather condition, itinerary modification due to a safety concern, illness, change of government policy, political instability/strike, etc.

  Before You Go

We want to make your trip to Peru as memorable and as easy as possible. In this section, you will find speedy answers to all those questions you had in one place. Please read the following information carefully – it will help you with any questions about our services.

Has another question that we haven’t answered here? Drop us a line, and we will get back to you asap!

Briefing or informative meeting

All information meetings are held in your hotel at 6:00 p.m., one night before the tour begins. If you cannot attend, you must coordinate another time at the Cusco Expeditions offices. These meetings last approximately 30 to 45 minutes and there you will be given a small duffel bag, in which you’ll put all the belongings you intend to bring on the trek that won’t be in your day pack.

Duffel bag or canvas case:

ou’ll receive a canvas case or duffel bag during your briefing. The porters will take them on the way and will deliver them to you when you get to each camp. They measure 66 cm / 2 ft. Long x 36 cm / 1 ft. Wide.

A maximum of 5 kg is allowed for each duffel bag that includes the weight of your sleeping bag, mat, clothes and other personal items.

Payment of Trek Balance (in Cusco)

The trek has to be paid for in full by at least 7.30 pm two days before departure. For example, if your tour departs on a Wednesday, then you must come to our office before 7.30 pm on Monday.

It would be much appreciated if you pay the trek balance in cash US dollars or local currency. You can withdraw some money from several ATMs along Avenida Sol (either in US dollars or local Peruvian Soles). You can pay by credit card or PAYPAL online, but you will have to pay an 8% service charge, charged by VISA and PAYPAL. We do not accept bank checks or payment of the balance by traveler’s checks.

Storing your luggage at our Office.

Of course! During the travel, your main luggage can be stored at our office(you can organize briefing day or by email) or at your hotel, both free of charge.

Any equipment that you are not going to need on the trek can be stored safely in your hotel. Nearly every hotel will provide this service. Don’t leave items of value with your bags, put them in the hotel safe and obtain an itemized receipt (In the unlikely case of theft many insurance companies require that you have a copy of the receipt itemizing all the items). Best put items such as credit cards inside a sealed, signed envelope for extra peace of mind.


Cusco Expeditions can pick you up from your hotel, as long as it’s in the Historic Center of Cusco. The pickup time will be coordinated with your guide in the briefing. The pickup time may vary between 30 and 45 minutes due to traffic. Cusco is a very old city, therefore, it has many narrow cobbled streets. Some hotels and Airbnbs may be located on streets without access to cars or on long, steep slopes, making it difficult to transport luggage. We strongly recommend that you book accommodation with good access.

Group tours:

Group tours are made up of different types of people. Physical conditions and ages can vary. By agreeing to be part of a group tour, you also accept that some people may be faster or slower than you. Therefore, each person can go at their own pace on the route. It may be the case that a group wishes to modify the tour; however, it will be the guide who decides, after consulting with all the participants, if said modifications can be made.

Strikes and demonstrations:

Strikes and demonstrations are usually frequent in Peru and this may interrupt some of our tours. Roads can be blocked and train tracks can be taken over. However, we will try to keep your excursion as planned, even if it means leaving the night before the scheduled date. Under these circumstances, tours may also be cancelled. In case of changes or cancellations, all situations will be coordinated with you by our operations department. Your safety is our highest priority and our decisions will be made to protect it.

Lost objects:

You’re responsible for your objects during the tour. Please pay attention to where you leave your things and remember to take everything once you leave our trucks, tents, or restaurants.


The Ancascocha trek & Inca Trail Short can leave any day of the week, from March through January. We do not run this trek in February because rainy season & maintenance.

  • Group Price

  • Ancascocha Group
  • 2020 Land Cost
    per person
  • Pre-payment
  • Balance
  • This small-group journey is guaranteed to operate with just two guests.

Additional Items

There are additional items you can include in this trip. Below is a quick list of prices.

  • Huayna Picchu:  $30
  • Machu Picchu Mountain:  $30
  • Single Room at Aguas Calientes:  $30

Extensions & Offers

There are several extensions you can include to your Salkantay Adventure:

  • Rainbow Mountain:  $100  $80
  • Sacred Valley:  $100  $80
  • City Tour:  $20

Price Guarantee

Once your booking has been confirmed we guarantee the price will not increase, whatever the circumstances. Before booking please ensure you have read our important tour pricing information

  Enquire Now

Thank you for your interest in having an adventure travel experience in Peru curated by Cusco Expeditions. Please take a moment to complete our short form, so one our friendly Adventure Consultants could provide you all the information for your trip of a lifetime in Peru.

Personal Details

Trip Details

Ancascocha & Inca Trail 5D
14 years and above
Below 14 years
7 + 3 =
Remember |  One of our Travel Experts will contact you soon to confirm the availability of the trip you chose, give you more information, and/or provide you alternative options. Once availability is established, we will ask for a deposit and a completed online registration to confirm your spot on the trek. Please call us at (+51) 947736747 with any questions or to confirm availability over the phone.

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Our Pledge |  Your privacy is respected and protected. The Cusco Expeditions Company will never share, sell, or make public any of your personal contact information to third parties.

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Feel free to reach us via email at or by calling us directly at +51 947 736 747

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Triunfo Street 392, office 212, 2nd floor - Main Square of Cusco, Peru

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Monday - Friday
9:00 am to 8:00 pm
10:00 am to 6:00 pm

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Due to the rainy season and trail maintenance, we don't offer this trek during the whole month of february. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause you, we are working to provide you a better service!

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Our Focus

Guarantee you the adventure of a Lifetime

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Your Safety is our priority

Cusco Expeditions organized a first aid and rescue course in which all its guides actively participated.

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Expert Local Guides

Our Destination Experts aren't just trip designers, they're true explorers with experience in Peru you won't find anywhere else.

Fantastic Meals
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Fantastic Meals

The food is one of the most important things on the trek, we bring balance and nutritive food along the trail.

Small Groups
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Small Groups

Travelling with us will always feel like travelling among friends and not with a group of strangers in an organized tour.

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Great Experiences & Magical Places

The Journey is the Destination

What better way to explore a magic destination than by following in the footsteps of the people who know it best? To find out the best places to view during your Salkantay Trek, take a look at some of our traveler's favorite places.

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