What does Cochabamba feature?

Altitude:    2,570 meters (8,426 feet) Average temperature:    18  ーC Known as the Garden City of Bolivia, Cochabamba has 408,000 inhabitants and a warm temperature year around. It is located in the central valley region and agriculture is the main source of income . The Chapare, one of the agriculturally richest subtropical valleys in Bolivia, and […]

What does Santa Cruz (Bolivia) feature?

Altitude:    437 meters (1,433 feet) Average temperature:    25  ーC Located in the eastern tropical area of Bolivia, Santa Cruz de la Sierra has 700,000 inhabitants and is the second largest city in the country as well as the industrial center of the lowlands. Its climate shares hot tropical weather with the cool breezes of the […]

What is Bolivia like?

There are few countries in the world quite as fascinating as Bolivia. This marvelous country houses the most diverse geographical environments, beginning with the gigantic Highlands in the eastern part, always protected by their eternal Guards, the majestic Andes Range. There, too, is the highest navigable lake in the world, Lake Titicaca, the center of […]

What are some basic facts about Boliva?

POPULATION:        7,500,000 Inhabitants. AREA:            1,098,581 km2 (424,165 square miles). CAPITAL:            Sucre (La Paz, seat of the Government) FOUNDATION:        August 6, 1825. LANGUAGE:            Spanish, Quechua and Aymara. Many languages and dialects survive, including: Tupi-Guaraní;Mataco; and Guarayo. RELIGION:            Catholicism is the official religion. LOCAL TIME:        Official […]

Are there animals or insects that I should know about that might be in the area?

On the Inca Trail, there are over 250 known species of orchids, as well as numerous rare birds, animals, and reptiles including several species considered to be in danger of extinction.  There will of course be insects, especially at lower elevations.  It’s always a good idea to bring insect repellent with you just to be […]

What is the weather like on the Inca Trail?

Considering the very high altitude, the weather on the Inca Trail is relatively mild all year round.  The rainy, cooler season is between November to March; the warmer, dry season is from April to October. The average annual minimum temperature ranges between 5°C and 11°. In the months of June, July and August the temperature […]

What are the toilets like along the trail?

Toilets along the Inca Trail have improved a lot in the last couple of years and all of the larger campsites have toilet blocks with flush toilets and running water. On the whole they are kept pretty clean. If you do need to go the toilet between campsites then proper “leave no trace” policies should […]

What is the best time of year to do the Inca Trail trek?

The Inca Trail is open 11 months out of the year, closing for the month of February (see below).  The dry season from April to October is probably the most comfortable period to visit the Inca Trail, however there is always a chance of rain throughout the year.  The rainy season is from December to […]

Is it true that the Inca Trail will be closed at some point during the year?

The Inca Trail will be closed during the month of February each year, which is the height of the wet season. The last group will depart on January 31st and the next group will start on March 1st. The closure is to allow conservation projects to take place, give an opportunity for camping facilities to […]

What Can I Do About Altitude Sickness

Peru is famous for its impressive altitude; many of its most popular destinations sit at 8,000 feet above sea level. Cusco, the hub for many treks including the Classic Inca Trail, is 11,600 ft above sea level. Altitude sickness can begin to affect people at 6,500 feet above sea level. Symptoms will usually manifest after […]

What kind of accommodations should I expect while trekking the Inca Trail?

The accommodations for an Inca Trail trek will be camping while on the Trail. With a high quality company, you will usually get higher quality gear. Typically, you will have to provide the sleeping bag and pad yourself while the trek operator will provide the tents, cooking equipment, food, and water purifiers. If you are […]

Where does the Inca Trail start?

The entrances to the Classic Inca Trail are marked according to the kilometers on the railway between Cusco and Aguas Calientes. For example: “km 104” is 104 kilometers from Cusco on the way to Aguas Calientes.If doing the four or five day trek, you will start at km 88 or km 82, which is a […]

How much will I personally carry on my trek?

You will most likely have porters to carry the majority of your gear on the Inca Trail. Any gear you won’t need on your trek should be left at your hotel in their luggage storage or, in some cases, it can be left at your trek operator’s office. Porters are not allowed to carry more […]

When will I receive my permit?

Your tour operator will hold onto your Inca Trail permit.  It will not be given to you before your trek.  With many companies, your guide will carry your permit  for the entire trek so there is no chance that a passenger will lose their permit along the way. Inca Trail Treks

I found a much cheaper Inca Trail Trek, how can trips vary so much in price?

If the price looks too good to be true, it often is. A cheap trip often means that it is the porters and guides who suffer the most. Many of these workers have to sleep in the dining tents, have very little to eat, and are compensated very poorly. The trips featured on Detour have […]

Why do I need a permit for the Inca Trail trek?

By the late 1990’s, the famous stretch of the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu was becoming very popular and very crowded. There was very little regulation, and trekkers could travel independently or with any guide.  The trail was becoming loved to death, and garbage and human waste were not being disposed of properly, erosion was […]

Can I buy the Inca Trail permits myself or hike without a guide?

No, the permit system is put in place to protect the safety of tourists, employees, and the environment. It is illegal for you to trek on the Inca Trail without a licensed trek operator. Also, due to the popularity of this trek, it is nearly impossible to find a legitimate tour group with extra space, […]

How challenging is the Inca Trail?

The Inca Trail reaches approx 13,700 feet (4,200 meters) at its highest point and is approx 27 miles long. Machu Picchu is located at 7,800 feet (2,400 meters) above sea level and is considered a moderate hike. It’s not a technical hike but there are a lot of Inca staircases to walk up and down, […]

What if I’m a single trekker, do I have make any special arrangements?

No, we take care of all arrangements for you. However, you may have the choice of sharing with another traveler of the same sex or you can request private accommodations (you will have to pay a single supplement fee). This applies whether you are camping or using lodges/hotels along the way. However, most travel providers […]

I don’t want to carry my backpack- what options do you have for me?

Very few of our treks require you to carry your own backpack, as porters or animals will carry your pack for you. If your trek is a backpacking trip, you may still be able to hire porters or support animals to carry your excess luggage.  If you do hire this service, make sure that you […]

Should I bring my own food?

Our local outfitters do provide food to all their travelers, however if you have a favorite snack or something you can’t live without, feel free to bring it with you. Classic hiking snacks are always a good idea, such as granola, oats, raisins, peanuts, chocolate etc. Detour’s Tours

Will I feel safe traveling the Inca Trail?

As always, please use common sense when traveling to a foreign country.  Theft is now not as common on the Inca Trail, but you should always take basic precautions. Don’t take any valuables with you that you don’t need for the trek.  Leave jewelry, large sums of money, or any other valuables in your hotel […]

How cold will it get on my trek?

Because of the high altitude, the temperature can vary and get very cool, especially during the Andean winter (May – September) when the temperature can drop to below zero degrees (Celsius) at night. There is still potential for it to be very cool at other times of the year, so it is recommended that you […]

Can I Trek the Inca Trail Without A Guide?

It is not possible to trek the Inca Trail without hiring the services of a guide from a licensed Inca Trail tour operator.  Independent trekking, or trekking without a guide and tour operator has been banned since 2002. 2001 trekking independently was banned. The regulation, however, was not enforced until early 2002. Trekkers now have […]

Is there another way to trek into Machu Picchu without a permit?

No, the permitted Inca Trail is the only way to arrive on foot through the Gate of the Sun at Machu Picchu. You can trek on other Inca Trails that get you very close to the site.  Only those on the Inca Trail (which includes the One-Day, Mollepata, and Classic trails) will trek directly into […]