Lares and Patacancha Valleys

Lares and Patacancha Valleys 4 days 3 nights

Trek in Cusco’s Andes amid mountain scenery and Andean communities. This trek will take you to indigenous communities where you can observe their traditional way of life, experiencing along the way the beautiful scenery, flora and fauna of the Andes mountains, high above the Sacred Valley of the Incas. With the help of local porters, muleteers and horses, this trek can be completed in three days, arriving on the third day at the village of Ollantaytambo, in the Sacred Valley of the Incas, from where trains depart for Aguas Calientes, the small town below the ruins of Machu Picchu. The fourth day of this itinerary is dedicated to visiting Machu Picchu, followed by an afternoon return train ride to Cusco.

YOUR DAY-BY-DAY ITINERARY AND SERVICES:

Day 1: Cusco – Sacred Valley of the Incas – Lares valley – Huacawasi

We will pick you up from your hotel, leaving Cusco at 6.00 am and heading for Calca, a small town in the Sacred Valley of the Incas. At this time of the morning the views are often spectacular. Along the way we will visit the Inca granaries of Muyoq Orqo, before continuing past the Sawasiray peak on our way to Willka Punku Pass, which marks the start of the ascent to Lares. There will be time to rest and enjoy the thermal baths at Lares, and after lunch we will begin our trek by walking to our first campsite near the village of Huacawasi, where you can visit local weavers and enjoy your evening meal. 

Day 2: Huacawasi – Ipsaycocha – Patacancha valley

After breakfast, we will continue our trek in the direction of Ipsayqocha pass, a steady climb through the natural habitat of llamas and alpacas. Here, in addition to appreciating the surrounding panoramic views, it is possible to observe several high Andes bird species. At 4420 meters (14,500 feet) above sea level, Ipsaycocha is the only high pass on our route. Here the Andean landscape is dotted with herds of llamas and alpacas. Once over the pass, a long descent will take us to the Patacancha valley, where we will camp.

Day 3: Patacancha valley – Sacred Valley of the Incas – Machu Picchu

This morning we will hike to the indigenous village of Willoq, a traditional farming, llama herding and weaving community that has conserved its traditional way of life. The trail follows a narrow valley through Inca terraces still used by local people to grow potatoes, corn, quinoa and other native crops. Along the way, we will pass the Inca archaeological site of Pumamarca. In the village our vehicle will be waiting to take us to Ollantaytambo in the Sacred Valley of the Incas, where you will have time to explore the imposing Inca ruins before taking the train to Machu Picchu and spending the night in the nearby small town of Aguas Calientes. 

Day 4: Machu Picchu – Cusco

Your guided tour will include the temples, plazas, palaces, watercourses and residential areas of the archaeological complex, in the company of an experienced and knowledgeable guide. In the afternoon, we will return by bus to Aguas Calientes to catch the train back to Cusco. 

EXTENSIONS: DO YOU HAVE MORE TIME TO SPEND IN PERU?

Other travelers added the following extension to this Peru itinerary...

HIGH PLAINS OF CUSCO Full day
High above Cusco’s Sacred Valley, the living culture of Peru and vestiges of Inca culture. On the fertile plains high above the Sacred Valley of the Incas, it is possible to visit a traditional weaving community, saltpans that have been exploited sustainably since Pre-Inca times, and an agricultural research station used by the Incas to develop new higher yield crop varieties. 


CHECK TO SEE WHAT'S INCLUDED AND WHAT YOU NEED TO BRING...

Included
  • All land transport (private vehicle)
  • English-speaking tour guide
  • Camp cook, pack animals and mule drivers, camp assistant(s). Mules carry up to 8 kg of personal gear for each participant
  • Camping equipment: Two-person tents, kitchen and/or dining tent, and toilet tent
  • Inflatable mattress
  • Food: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner as described in the itinerary
  • Snacks in the morning, including fruit, chocolate, candy, etc.
  • Hot drinks in the afternoon (tea or coffee)
  • Duffle bags for your gear
  • First-aid kit
  • Entrance fee to Machu Picchu
  • Round trip bus ticket to Machu Picchu
  • Train ticket Ollantaytambo - Aguas Calientes – Cusco (Expedition class, we can upgrade you to Vistadome upon request)
  • Transfer from Cusco train station to your hotel 
Not included
  • Hotel in Aguas Calientes
  • Sleeping bag (we can rent you a sleeping bag at an additional cost)
  • Travel insurance
  • Meals not mentioned in the itinerary
  •  Tips
What to bring:
  • Passport
  • Daypack
  • Warm clothes for the high Andean section of the itinerary
  • Rain jacket
  • Long sleeved cotton shirts
  • Shorts for walking (optional)
  • Hiking boots
  • Cap and sunglasses
  • Walking poles (optional)
  • Insect repellent
  • Sun block
  •  Water bottle for the first day (we will refill your bottle each day)
  • Binoculars for birdwatching enthusiasts
  • Flashlight
  • Camera
FAQs - Frequently asked questions

How far in advance do I need to book a trek or hike?

For trekking and hiking routes other than the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, you should make your booking at least five days in advance, so we can make the necessary preparations, although we recommend that you make your booking up to 90 days in advance. Full refunds (minus administration costs) can be offered 45 days before your scheduled departure date. After 45 days, only partial refunds will be given. 

I would like to trek with my friends, can I book now and my friends book later?
Yes, for trekking and hiking routes other than the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, you can add other travelers to your group before departure. Write to us for more information on the treks, hikes and tours we have available. 

What is the maximum group size? Is there a maximum?
The maximum group size is 16 persons. For more than 16 persons, a second group must be organized. A single guide travels with 8 participants. For larger groups, an assistant guide will also accompany the participants.

If I am traveling alone can I have my own tent / hotel room?
If you are traveling alone and are willing to share a tent, with a member of the same sex or partner, family member or friend, then there is no additional cost. If, however, you would like your own private tent an additional supplement will be payable. Please contact us in advance, because on some trekking and hiking routes this option may depend on the availability of spaces at campsites designated by the Peruvian Ministry of Culture.

What do we do for water?
Use of plastic bottles on the network of Inca Trails to Machu Picchu is not permitted. Other treks and hikes do not have this restriction, but we always recommend and encourage our travelers to use reusable canteens or second use plastic water bottles. Our cook will provide you with boiled water to refill your bottle at all the campsites.

What food safety processes do you have in place?
All foodstuffs are purchased immediately before departure to guarantee freshness, and they are correctly packaged and handled by our trained staff to ensure food safety. We use cloth bags when making our purchases, rather than plastic. The produce is fresh and bought directly from local farmers. Also, we pack the produce in cloth bags and hermetic multiuse containers, avoiding the use of plastic in order to make our operations as green as possible. 

What do I need to carry?
You will need to carry your daypack with all the personal items you need during the day. The rest of your luggage will be transported by us (van / porters). Porters are only permitted to carry 8 kilos for each person (including sleeping bag). As a company, Andean Adventures Peru is committed to the well-being of its porters during treks and hikes, ensuring that they are properly paid, well fed, and comfortable at our campsites. On some of our trekking and hiking routes, pack animals are used. 

What type of camping gear is used for treks and hikes?
We supply all the camping equipment needed for groups to enjoy the great outdoors safely and comfortably: 4-person tents for every two participants; air mattresses; complete table service; dining tent, chairs and tables; kitchen tent; latrine tent; sleeping bags on request (many travelers choose to bring their own sleeping bag; however, we also offer sleeping bags for hire at an additional cost). 

What processes are in place to ensure the equipment is always in perfect condition?
Our full time logistics staff continuously maintain and/or replace all our equipment. To ensure proper use of our equipment, all gear is handled by our trained field crew during treks and hikes.

Do you provide sleeping pads?
Yes.

What food safety processes do you have in place?
All foodstuffs are purchased immediately before departure to guarantee freshness, and they are correctly packaged and handled by our trained staff to ensure food safety. We use cloth bags when making our purchases, rather than plastic. The produce is fresh and bought directly from local farmers. Also, we pack the produce in cloth bags and hermetic multiuse containers, avoiding the use of plastic in order to make our operations as green as possible. 

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