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3-Day Chocolate Lake to Rainbow Mountain Journey

From the tranquil Chocolate Lake to the vivid Rainbow Mountain, discover Peru’s diverse landscapes.

Location

Cusco, Peru

Duration

3 Days

Difficulty

8/10

Availability

Year Round

Tour type

Adventure

Overview

3-Day Chocolate Lake to Rainbow Mountain Journey Overview

Discover the hidden wonders of the Peruvian Andes on our 3-Day Chocolate Lake to Rainbow Mountain Journey. This trek is an enthralling blend of serene natural beauty and vivid landscapes, perfect for both enthusiastic trekkers and nature lovers. Start your adventure at the enigmatic Chocolate Lake, a serene wonder set amidst rugged terrain, and culminate at the stunning Rainbow Mountain, known for its vibrant, multi-colored vistas. This journey is not just a hike; it’s an exploration of Peru’s diverse and breathtaking highland scenery.

Immerse yourself in the tranquil yet dramatic landscapes of the Andes. The journey from Chocolate Lake’s unique allure to the iconic Rainbow Mountain encompasses a range of experiences, each more captivating than the last. As you navigate this rich and varied terrain, you’ll encounter majestic views and cultural insights, making this trek a journey of discovery and awe at every turn.

Departure & Return Location Your Hotel in Cusco
Departure Time 3:30 AM
Estimated Return Time 5:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Guide Languages Available Guides fluent in English and Spanish
Key Attractions Chocolate Lake, Paso Palomani, Ausangate Cocha, Apacheta Pass, Rainbow Mountain, Red Valley

Price
FromUSD 530
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Select a package
  • Standard Large GroupGroup Size: 2 Min – 16ppl MaxStart Time: 03:30
  • Standard Small GroupGroup Size: 2 Min – 8ppl MaxStart Time: 03:30
  • Private GroupGroup Size: CustomizableStart Time: 03:30
  • Deluxe Private GroupGroup Size: CustomizableStart Time: 03:30
  • Solo TravelerGroup Size: 1 personStart Time: 03:30
  • Deluxe Solo TravelerGroup Size: 1 personStart Time: 03:30

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3-Day Chocolate Lake to Rainbow Mountain

Tour Itinerary

Explore our expertly designed itinerary below, crafted to showcase breathtaking views and provide unique adventures every step of the way.

Day 1: From Cusco to the Enchanting Chocolate Lake and Beyond

Your unforgettable journey starts with an early morning pickup from your hotel in Cusco. Settle in for a scenic 3.5-hour drive to the quaint village of Huchuy Phynaya. Here, amidst the tranquil surroundings, a hearty breakfast prepared by our skilled cook awaits you. It’s also where you’ll meet the dedicated horseman who will accompany us on our trek, carrying our equipment.

The trek begins with a 3-hour walk to Chocolate Lake, an ascent that gradually reveals the stunning landscapes of the Andes. You’ll encounter herds of llamas and alpacas along the way, adding a touch of Andean charm to your hike. Upon arrival at Chocolate Lake, you’ll be mesmerized by its unique cocoa-colored waters, offering spectacular photo opportunities and a chance to learn about its significance from our knowledgeable guide.

After enjoying the lake’s serene beauty, savor a delicious lunch in this picturesque setting. Then, prepare yourself for a 2-hour hike to the highest point of our trek, Paso Palomani (5,200m). Here, a breathtaking 360-degree view of the surrounding mountains awaits, offering a moment of awe and wonder.

The day concludes with a descent to Ausangate Cocha, taking approximately 2.5 hours. As the evening sets in, relax and enjoy tea and dinner at our campsite, where the clear night sky reveals the majestic Milky Way.

Accommodation: Camping
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Tea, and Dinner
Hiking: Approx. 7-8 hours, 15 Km

Greet the day with a warm cup of coca tea or coffee, followed by a nutritious breakfast with the team. The adventure continues with a four-hour hike to the Apacheta pass. As you ascend, each step brings you closer to breathtaking views of Ausangate Mountain and the vibrant lakes below. Take a moment at the summit to capture these memories with photos and breathe in the purest air of the Andes.

The journey then leads us on a descent towards the Anantapata camp. The landscape around you transforms, revealing the diverse beauty of the region. Upon arrival at the camp, witness a picturesque sunset and observe the local wildlife, including alpacas, llamas, and sheep, as they return to their shelters.

As the day concludes, gather for dinner at 6.30 pm and prepare for the early start tomorrow. The anticipation builds for the upcoming visit to Vinicunca, the Rainbow Mountain.

Accommodation: Camping
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Tea, and Dinner
Hiking: Approx. 7-8 hours, 14 Km

The final day of your adventure begins before dawn at Ananta. After a 3 a.m. wake-up and a hearty breakfast, you’ll start the ascent to Vinicunca, the renowned Rainbow Mountain. The initial hour of hiking takes you uphill to the Warmisaya Pass (4,980m), where you’ll be greeted with a magnificent sunrise over the Andes.

Continuing from the pass, a 40-minute descent leads to the Surini Lagoon. Then, you’ll undertake a steady climb for about an hour to reach the summit of Vinicunca (5,038m). As one of the first groups to arrive, you’ll enjoy a peaceful exploration and the chance to capture the mountain in its full, uncrowded glory. Your guide will share insights into the mountain’s unique geology and cultural importance.

Optionally, you can extend your hike by an additional hour to explore the Red Valley, a striking area of red-colored mountains offering a stunning contrast to Rainbow Mountain.

Your journey concludes with a two-hour descent to Alqatari for a celebratory lunch. Afterward, say goodbye to your support team and head back to Cusco in your private transport, arriving around 4 p.m., with a heart full of memories from the majestic Andes.

Accommodation: Return to Cusco
Meals: Breakfast & Lunch
Hiking: Approx. 5-6 hours, 8 Km

Tour Highlights

3-Day Chocolate Lake to Rainbow Mountain Journey Highlights

  • Scenic Drive from Cusco to Huchuy Phynaya: Begin your adventure with a picturesque 3.5-hour drive through the beautiful landscapes of the Andean highlands.
  • Chocolate Lake: Discover the unique and serene Chocolate Lake, known for its cocoa-colored waters, surrounded by stunning Andean scenery.
  • Paso Palomani: Reach the highest point of the trek at Paso Palomani (5,200m), offering 360-degree panoramic views of the surrounding majestic mountains.
  • Ausangate Cocha: Camp near the beautiful Ausangate Cocha, experiencing an evening under the clear skies with a view of the Milky Way.
  • Apacheta Pass: Trek to the Apacheta pass, where breathtaking views of the Ausangate Mountain and vibrant high-altitude lakes unfold.
  • Anantapata Camp: Experience the tranquil beauty of Anantapata, observing local wildlife and enjoying picturesque sunsets.
  • Sunrise at Warmisaya Pass: Witness a spectacular sunrise from the Warmisaya Pass, adding a magical start to your final day.
  • Rainbow Mountain (Vinicunca): Explore the famous Rainbow Mountain, known for its stunning multi-colored mineral striations, in the peaceful early morning hours before the crowds.
  • Optional Red Valley Hike: For those seeking additional adventure, the optional hike to the Red Valley offers a landscape of striking red mountains, providing a stark contrast to Rainbow Mountain.
  • Authentic Andean Trekking Experience: Enjoy the authentic experience of trekking through the Andes, with local guides, cooks, and horsemen, immersing yourself in the culture and natural beauty of the region.

Inclusions & Exclusions

Detailing Every Aspect of Your Travel Experience: What’s Included and What’s Not

Standard Inclusions

All package options include the following:

  • Bilingual English-speaking tour guide.
  • Pre-departure briefing at your hotel or office 1 or 2 days before the trek.
  • Hotel pick-up and transportation to the trailhead.
  • Return transportation from the trail’s end.
  • 4-person tent for every 2 people.
  • Inflatable mattress.
  • Kitchen tent, dining tent with tables and chairs.
  • Toilet tent.
  • Professional chef and assistant chef.
  • Daily morning boiled and cold water for water bottle refills.
  • Horses to carry all equipment (food, tents, chairs, table, etc.).
  • Horse to transport 7 kg of your personal gear.
  • Duffel bag for your personal gear.
  • 3 breakfasts, 3 lunches, and 2 dinners.
  • Vegetarian and gluten-free options at no extra cost.
  • Provision of snacks during the trek.
  • Emergency oxygen bottle and medical kit.
  • Entrance fees to Chocolate Lake, Rainbow Mountain, and Red Valley.
  • All camping spot fees.

Exclusions:

Not included in our standard tour packages. Consider additional costs. Deluxe packages may cover some exclusions, as specified in the Additional Inclusions section.

  • Sleeping bag (available for rent).
  • Trekking poles (available for rent).
  • Day 3 dinner.
  • Tips for tour guides, chefs, and support staff are not included and are at your discretion.

Additional Inclusions

Deluxe Packages Only

Elevate your travel experience with our bespoke Deluxe Package, meticulously designed to offer an array of premium amenities and services.

Deluxe Packages Include:

  • Emergency Horse & Handler: An extra horse and a trained handler provide added safety on the trail.
  • North Face Four-Season Tents: State-of-the-art, weather-resistant tents for ultimate outdoor comfort.
  • Sleeping Bag: Sleep well with one premium sleeping bag per person.
  • Walking Sticks: 01 pair per person for added stability.
  • Private Transportation: Transportation exclusively for your group.
  • Personal Duffel Bag: Use a durable duffel bag to conveniently carry your personal gear, including the sleeping bag and self-inflating pads.
  • Dedicated Tour Guide: Get personalized insights and guidance from an expert tour guide throughout your journey.
  • Fair Compensation: We ensure fair compensation for all our dedicated team members.

Prices

Discover our diverse tour offerings, catering to various interests and providing unforgettable experiences for every traveler.

Standard Large Group

Group Size: 2 Min – 16ppl Max

USD

530

Per Person

Join a diverse group of travelers for an economical shared experience.

All standard inclusions
No Additional Inclusions
No Private Service

Standard Small Group

Group Size: 2 Min – 8ppl Max

USD

560

Per Person

Enjoy a more intimate setting, ideal for closer interactions and bonding.

All standard inclusions
No Additional Inclusions
No Private Service

Private Group

Group Size: Customizable

USD

610

Per Person

Curate your journey with exclusivity tailored to your group’s preferences.

All standard inclusions
No Additional Inclusions
Private Service

Deluxe Private Group

Group Size: Customizable

USD

740

Per Person

Indulge in luxury, enhancing every aspect of your tour for a memorable experience.

All standard inclusions
Additional Inclusions
Private Service

Solo Traveler

Group Size: 1 person

USD

1040

Per Person

Embrace the freedom of a solo adventure, with options to mingle or stay independent.

All standard inclusions
No Additional Inclusions
Private Service or Join a Group

Deluxe Solo Traveler

Group Size: 1 person

USD

1280

Per Person

Elevate your solo journey with added luxury and attentive service.

All standard inclusions
Additional Inclusions
Private Service

Special Discounts

  • Adult (12+ Years): Standard rates apply for travelers over 12 years old.
  • Child (3 – 11 Years): Save USD 30 for children between 3 and 11 years old.
  • Infant (0 – 2 Years): Infants younger than 2 years old are free (must ride on the adult’s lap; for a separate seat, add them as a child).
  • Group Discount: Automatically applied during online booking.
    • Save USD 10/person for groups of 5-7 people.
    • Save USD 15/person for groups of 8-10 people.
    • Save USD 20/person for groups of 11+ people.

*Please note that the applicable age is considered at the time of completion of the trip.

Payment Terms & Cancellation Policy

Kindly take a moment to read our Payment Terms & Cancellation Policy before booking. Happy adventuring!

Payment Terms

Beginning Your Adventure – Booking Confirmation and Deposit

Your journey starts with a commitment: a 30% deposit of the total tour cost. This initial investment is pivotal in activating the extensive preparatory process, ensuring every aspect of your tour is curated to perfection.

Final Payment: The Last Step Before Your Journey Begins

The remaining 70% of the tour cost is due no later than 48 hours before the commencement of your tour. This timely payment is critical to finalize all logistical arrangements, guaranteeing a hassle-free start to your adventure.

Expansive Payment Options for Ease and Flexibility

In line with our commitment to your convenience, Huaynas Expeditions accepts a variety of payment methods, including bank transfers, credit cards, and PayPal. Please be aware that additional fees may apply depending on the payment method selected. Detailed payment procedures and potential fees can be found on our dedicated payment page.

Implications of Late Payments – Protecting Your Reservation

Adherence to the payment schedule is crucial. Late payments can unfortunately lead to the cancellation of your reservation, with the deposit being retained as a non-refundable fee. We urge you to maintain timely payments to safeguard your tour plans.

Policy for Last-Minute Adventurers

For those inspired to join this tour on short notice, namely less than 15 days before departure, full payment is required at the time of booking. This ensures that we can expedite all necessary preparations for your inclusion.

Cancellation Policy

Flexible Cancellation Options for Clients

We understand that circumstances can change, sometimes unexpectedly. If you find the need to cancel your booking, you have the flexibility to do so up to 30 days before the tour start date. In this case, you will receive a full refund minus a 10% administration fee, acknowledging the efforts and resources already invested in planning your tour. Any additional balance paid will also be refunded, ensuring a fair and transparent process.

Understanding Cancellations Within 30 Days

We wish to draw your attention to our policy for cancellations made within 30 days of the tour departure. Given the advanced stage of preparations and commitments made at this juncture, we are unable to offer refunds. This policy is in place to balance the significant logistical arrangements and reservations made on your behalf.

Navigating Through Force Majeure

In the event of extraordinary and uncontrollable circumstances, such as natural disasters or significant political unrest, Huaynas Expeditions adopts a flexible approach. We prioritize your safety and satisfaction, offering to reschedule your trip or provide a credit for future travel, subject to availability.

Strong Advocacy for Comprehensive Travel Insurance

We cannot overstate the importance of securing comprehensive travel insurance. Such insurance plays a critical role in safeguarding your investment against unforeseen cancellations, emergencies, and other unexpected scenarios. It is a proactive measure to ensure peace of mind throughout your journey. Huaynas Expeditions is not responsible for any expenses arising from incidents not covered by your insurance policy.

Looking for the Perfect Tour?

If our standard tours don’t match your dream, let Huaynas Expeditions create one that does. Start planning your unique adventure now.

What to Pack

Your Essential Packing Guide for a Hassle-Free Adventure

Packing List

Prepare for an unforgettable journey with our essential packing guide. Here’s what you need to bring:

  • Original passport and student ID (if applicable).
  • Light day pack with clothes suitable for varied temperatures.
  • Rain gear or poncho.
  • Waterproof trekking boots and extra socks.
  • Warm clothing, including a jacket, fleece, gloves, scarf, beanie, and thermals for sleeping.
  • Sleeping bag.
  • Torch or flashlight and spare batteries.
  • Camera, film, and batteries.
  • Sunblock and after-sun hydrating cream.
  • Insect repellent (minimum 20% DEET, no malaria risk reported).
  • Toilet paper.
  • Snacks (such as biscuits, energy bars, chocolate, fruits, etc.).
  • Reusable canteen and water for the first morning.
  • Personal medical kit (including special medications, paracetamol, blister treatment, etc.).
  • Small towel or sarong.
  • Cash for snacks, tips, and souvenirs.
  • Earplugs for noise reduction during sleep or windy conditions.
  • Walking sticks or poles.

Note:

This list is a general guideline. Adjustments may be necessary based on personal preferences and the season of travel. Always check the weather forecast before your trip and feel free to reach out to us for any specific advice or requirements.

Provided Duffle Bag and Packing Tips

Pack Wisely with Our Essential Packing Tips

We’ll provide a returnable duffle bag during the pre-trek briefing, held 1-2 nights before your tour. Familiarize yourself with the bag, pack efficiently, and get essential trek details, safety guidelines, and updates. It’s a great chance to ask questions, meet fellow trekkers, and prepare for your adventure.

Our Packing Tips:

  • Adhere to the 7 kg weight limit: Keep the weight of your personal items in the duffle bag within the 7 kg limit to maintain a manageable load for the horses.
  • Place non-essential items in the duffle bag: Store items you won’t need during the day, like extra clothes, toiletries, and sleeping bags, in the duffle bag to lighten your day pack.
  • Label your duffle bag: Add a luggage tag or other identification to your duffle bag to prevent mix-ups with other trekkers’ bags.
  • Keep valuables in your day pack: Store passports, cameras, cash, and other valuable items in your day pack for added security and easy access.

Frequently Asked Questions

Got questions? We’ve got answers! Dive into our FAQ section for detailed responses to common queries. If you don’t find what you’re looking for, our team is just a click away to assist you.

Didn’t find what you’re looking for?

For more general questions about our tours, policies, and other inquiries, please visit our comprehensive FAQ page.

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Why Choose Huaynas Expeditions

Local Expertise

As a Cusco-based travel agency, our knowledgeable local guides and travel experts have an in-depth understanding of Peru's history, culture, and hidden gems, ensuring an authentic and immersive experience.

Experienced Team

Our dedicated team shares a deep love for Peru and its diverse offerings, ensuring you receive a memorable and uniquely crafted travel experience.

Personalized Itineraries

We understand that every traveler has unique interests and preferences. That's why we work closely with you to create customized itineraries tailored to suit your travel goals and desires.

Top Support

Our devoted team is available 24/7 to assist you with any questions or concerns you may have, ensuring a stress-free and enjoyable travel experience.

Safety and Reliability

Your safety and well-being are our top priorities. We adhere to strict safety protocols and maintain strong relationships with trusted local partners to provide you with the best possible experience.

Competitive Pricing

We strive to offer high-quality travel experiences at competitive prices, ensuring you receive excellent value for your investment.