Choquekirao it is an Inca citadel and fortress that means “cradle of gold” also know as the ‘Machu Picchu sister’, and it is considered the other “Lost City of the Incas”, mainly because there are located near to the world-famous Machu Picchu citadel but, it has been hidden from the world until this last decade.This magnificent and cultural trek is a truly spectacular hike that plunges down into the Apurimac canyon and then up again to the fascinating ruins of Choquequirao.
While this is a quite tough hike, you are rewarded with spectacular views of the snowcapped mountains and chances to see those majestic largest birds “Condors” on the way.
The ruins of Choquequirao, perched on a ledge high above the Apurimac and are probably more fascinating and usually so-called “Machu Picchu´s sister” because of its similar features.
This is certainly a very unique trail in the high Andes.
Day 1: Cusco – Capuliyoc – Chiquisca
We will pick you up from your hotel in Cusco at 4 a.m.
You will ride our private van with your tour guide and drive about three hours until you get to the trailhead, called Capuliyoc (3,200 m).
You will meet your horses and horsemen. Your trekking chef will provide the first breakfast and your trekking guide will introduce the team.
The views of the snow-capped mountains are beautiful.
After a group photo, you will start the amazing expedition to Choquekirao.
It will be a three hour, downhill hike with a few stops, as needed until you arrive at your first lunch spot.
The trail can be dusty and slippery, but with good trekking shoes and trekking poles, you won’t have a problem.
There will be spectacular views of the Apurimac river, landscapes and beautiful flora and fauna.
After lunch, you will hike another two hours till you get to Chikiska campsite. which is near the bottom of a valley, (2,000 mts).
Day 2: Chiquisca – Marampata
After an early breakfast, you will get ready for the day.
You will begin the day by crossing the river with a new brand bridge, and then it will be four hours uphill, with zigzags.
Along the way, you will pass by some sugar cane farms, more great views of the valley from the opposite hill, possibly some condors above and beautiful flora and fauna.
This climb is one of the most challenging parts of the Choquekiraw Trek, so we will have an emergency horse in case you get tired, and want a ride.
Once you arrive at Marampata, you will be done with the uphill portion.
You will have time to enjoy your lunch at 3,350 m high.
After lunch, you can take a nap, Here you will have amazing views from the summit to the canyon of Apurimac.
You will also be able to see Choquekiraw in a short distance, orchids, among other flowers and birds and if lucky probably the spectacled bear.
Upon your arrival to the campsite, our porters will set you up in your tents.
This campsite is amazing because it will be close to the Inca site.
Walking Distance: 16 km /9.16 m
Meals Included: Breakfast, snacks, lunch, happy hour and dinner
Day 3: Exploring Choquequirao
After an early breakfast, you will prepare for the most amazing day, first 1-hour hike to get to the Inca fortress and citadel and explore Choquequirao. you’ll then begin your history lesson and tour of this impressive Inca site.
Choquekiraw is considered to be bigger than Machu Picchu, although most of it is still hidden in the forest.
This Inca site is extremely spread out because the Incas had to study which areas of the mountain to construct several buildings, terraces, and houses on.
The most impressive parts of this site are the temples, astronomical observatories, and water channels.
After touring around for about four hours, you will head back to camp for lunch and a rest.
You will have more time afterward to continue exploring the site with our expert tour guides.
You will get to explore amazing areas of the site, like the llama area, for example, which is a steep, downhill, 30-minute walk where you will see narrow farming terraces.
All of the llama depictions were built out of white stones, into the wall, they were sacred animals to the Incas.
You will also get to visit the Usno area (a large flat platform area), where you will enjoy the sunset over the mountains.
Following, you will walk back to your campsite for the second night at Marampata.
Weather: Hot and humid
Meals Included: Breakfast, lunch, happy hour and dinner
Day 4: Choquequirao – Marampata – La Playa – Chiquisca
After another early breakfast, we will prepare for our journey back to Cusco.
It will be two hours back to Marmpata. You will see views of the canyon of Apurimac along the way.
The tour guide will point out the beautiful flora and fauna you might have missed on your way to the Inca site.
You will see impressive waterfalls in the distance, as well as the clouds lifting from the bottom of the canyon.
Also, if the weather is nice, you will get to enjoy the amazing landscapes of the Andes.
From Marampata, you will begin the four hours, steep, downhill hike to La Playa.
This portion requires trekking poles.
Halfway down, you will have a break to enjoy some fruit farmed in the area. Cactus fruit are the main attraction.
Finally, you will reach La Playa for lunch.
Following, it will be another two hours, uphill to Chikiska Camp, which is in the backyard of a family’s home.
You may also see some black bears, condors, hummingbirds and more.
Trekking Distance: 18 km /11.32 m
Meals Included: Breakfast, snacks, lunch, happy hour and dinner
Day 5: Chiquisca – Capuliyoc – Cusco
After an early breakfast, you will get ready to return to Cusco.
It will be a four hour, uphill hike until you arrive at the end of the trek, where you will enjoy your last lunch with your tour guide, porters, and horsemen.
You will say goodbye to your team and then continue with your tour guide to Cusco, for about three more hours by car.
You will get to pass Curahuasi, where the famous Anis (local tea) is farmed.
You will arrive in Cusco around 4 p.m.
We will drop you off at your hotel.
Walking Distance: 8 km /4.17 m
Meals Included: Breakfast, snacks and lunch
Included / Not included
- A briefing at your hotel (6 p.m.) the night before you depart
- Pick up from your hotel and private van transportation to the trail head
- Professional English speaking tour guide
- Professional trekking chef
- Porters, horsemen
- Horses to carry the camping equipment, food, and your personal belongings (up to 7 kg)
- Meals, breakfast, snacks, happy hours, dinner
- Camping equipment, sleeping tents, foam mats, dining tents, kitchen tents, chairs, dishes and more
- Entrance fee to Choquekiraw
- First-aid kit
- Private, portable toilets
- Drinking water three times a day
- Emergency horse to ride in case you feel tired
- Taxes included
- Sleeping bag (rentals available from Scenic Peru)
- Walking sticks (rentals available from Scenic Peru)
- Tips to staff
- 2 people US$ 795 per person
- 3 people US$ 725 per person
- 4 people US$ 685 per person
- 5 people US$ 635 per person
- 6 people US$ 590 per person
- 7 people US$ 550 per person
- 8+ people US$ 510 per person
Includes: Mules to carry cooking and camping equipment and 7kg of your personal items,ALSO, AN EXTRA HORSE with saddle for any tourist who are tired or have difficulty during the trip.
What we recommend that you bring:
- A backpack with a change of clothes for the whole period of the trek
- Rain gear (jacket and pants if available) or rain poncho (plastic ponchos can be purchased in Cusco)
- Strong footwear, waterproof trekking boots recommended
- Sandals or jogging shoes for a higher comfort while at camp
- Warm clothes, including jacket, fleeces. Gloves,Thermal clothing is also recommended, especially for sleeping
- Flashlight/headlamp and batteries
- Camera, films and batteries (batteries consume more quickly under cold conditions)
- Hat or cap to protect you from the sun, rain and cold
- Sun block
- After-sun cream or hydrating cream for face and body
- Insect repellent – minimum recommended 20% DEET – no malaria risk has been reported
- Toilet paper
- Snacks: biscuits, energy bars, chocolate, raw fruits, muesli, etc. Please note that we do 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
- Non-disposable canteen (Nalgene type) and water for the first morning. Optionally: 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
- Cash in soles and/or US$
- Original Passport, YOU NEED TO BRING THE SAME PASSPORT THAT YOU USED FOR BOOKING THIS TREK. (plus the new one in case it has expired)
- Original International Student Identity Card (in case you have applied for a student discount)