One of the lesser-known routes to Machu Picchu is the Ancascocha Trek 5 Days to Machu Picchu. This means it’s far less crowded than the others. However, that doesn’t make it any less spectacular. National Geographic named it one of the 20 dreams walks to complete worldwide.
On this route, you’ll get to visit some rarely visited Inca Archaeological sites as well as extensive fields where peasants have worked the land for generations and some traditional Andean towns. Don’t forget the incredible views of the mountains that will surround you all the way.
You’ll witness some of the most incredible landscapes you’ve ever seen, from beautiful crystal lagoons and splashing waterfalls to the outstanding Salkantay Mountain.
Departure & Return Location:
Pick up from your hotel (4:00 am – 4:30 am).
We will pick you up from your hotel in Cusco early; we then travel for around 2 hours to reach the Ancascocha trek trailhead, known Soqma (3,205 m / 10,512 ft.); the muleteers will be waiting for us at this village, ready to join us in our adventure hiking trail to Machu Picchu. We then have our breakfast; after enjoying breakfast, we’ll begin the Ancascocha Adventure Hiking Trail from Soqma following one of the side valleys, covering about 1 hour and a half of hiking you will reach the waterfall of Perolniyoc, which is one of the most excellent falls along the Ancascocha hiking trail.
After shooting some pictures and cooling off in the waterfall, we will continue trekking for one more hour uphill to visit the Perolniyoc Inca ruins (a small Incan site perched atop the mountain) located above the waterfall. After having a history of this site by your experienced guide, we will walk for one hour to arrive at our lunch spot. While you enjoy your first lunch prepared by your trekking cook, you will have an overlooking scenery around. Following lunch, we’ll continue hiking up for about 2 hours and a half to reach the Kuychiccasa pass (4,450 m /14,599 ft). On the way, we will pass rustic fincas and see some South American camelids such as alpacas, llamas, etc., and also will enjoy the breathtaking views of the snow-capped peaks of the Urubamba range in a distance and below us the famous Sacred Valley of the Incas. From Kuychiccasa pass, we descent for 1 hour to reach our first campsite known Chancachuco (4,312 m / 14,147 ft).
Once we arrive at our first camp, the Huaynas Expeditions staff will welcome us with all the set tent up for relaxation, and then, you will have a hot drink and snack before dinner. By 7:30 pm, your dinner will be ready, and afterward, you can get some well-deserved rest.
Hiking Time: 7 – 8 hours
Hiking Distance: 7.45 miles / 11 km
Meals: Lunch, Tea, Dinner.
There’s no need to set the alarm on an ATP trek, as our team will wake you gently in the morning with a freshly brewed cup of tea or coffee and hot water to wash with. Once everyone is up, we will have breakfast together and fuel ourselves for the day ahead. You will need that fuel as we start with a steep 3-hour ascent to the Kuychiccasa pass (4,450 m /14,599 ft). On the way, we will pass rustic Fincas, see wild Alpacas or maybe even a passing Condor, and always with the snow-capped peaks of the Nevadas in the background.
There is no race to reach the top, though, and we will take a break together to enjoy the 360-degree views of the Chancachuco and Sacred valleys. Then, it’s just a 1-hour easy hike to our lunch stop at the Chancachuco Valley (4,312 m / 14,147 ft). After lunch, we do a short climb with beautiful views of Mt. Veronica (5,822 m/ 19,100 ft) before an easy 3-hour walk downhill to the community of Ancascocha (3,700 m/12,139 ft). Our campsite for the night is in a small but gorgeous wooded valley with a stream running through it.
Hiking Time: 7 – 8 hours
Hiking Distance: 7:45 miles / 12 km
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Tea, Dinner.
After breakfast at 6 am, we continue our trekking to Machu Picchu, following the switchback trail up to the highest point with stunning views of the nearby glacier, well preserved Inca remains, and the sparkling blue Ancascocha Lake. After a 2 or 3 hours hike, we reach the highest point of the Ancascocha Trek, known as Huayanay Pass (4,650 m/15,255 ft). Along the way, you will see the beautiful waterfall that feeds into the Ancascocha Lake and an original cobblestone paved Inca Trail. We will keep enjoying the incredible views from the summit before making our way to the lunch spot. The lunch spot is near the small Inca site of Incaracay. After enjoying a delicious lunch and short break, we’ll continue with our trek through the highland valley to the next campsite Paucarcancha (10,335 ft), for 2 more hours. Subsequently, we walk downhill to reach the camp that is located close by Paucarcancha Incan Site, a great place to learn about the Inca history while exploring with our Adventure tour guide. Then, we settle into our campsite for the evening and yet another excellent dinner.
Hiking Time: 8 – 9 hours
Hike Distance: 8.70 miles / 14 km
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Tea, Dinner.
The last day of hiking is the easiest of all as it is a 6-hour hike downhill on a section of the Classic Inca Trail to Km 82 (the official start of the Classic Trail). Lunch will be served at Km82. After lunch, we drive you to Ollantaytambo (2,792 m/9,160 ft) to catch the scenic train to Aguas Calientes (2,040 m/6,692 ft). The train journey provides a different perspective of the mountains you’ve just been hiking in and many more photo opportunities.
On arrival in Aguas Calientes, you will check-in to your lovely hotel room, where you can rest before dinner. Or, if you still have some energy, the natural hot springs in town are also a great place to relax. Showered and refreshed, we will take dinner together at an excellent restaurant with an extensive menu (drinks not included). It’s likely to be an early night, though, as our trip to Machu Picchu starts typically before sunrise!
Hiking Time: 5 hours
Hiking Distance: 6.83 miles / 11 km
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
The hotel we use provides a great buffet or can offer a boxed breakfast to ensure we are in the queue for the bus. It is about a 25-minute drive along the winding road to Machu Picchu, and on a clear day, the views can be spectacular. Upon arrival, your guide provides a 2-hour walking tour of the site, named as one of the new 7 wonders of the world. Then you are free to wander through the ruins yourself, perhaps finding a solitary spot to reflect on this awesome achievement of the Incas, or, if you have elected to climb Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountains (subject to availability) you can begin the hike once your guided tour concludes.
Your guide will arrange the time for you to return to Aguas Calientes by bus in time to make your train connection back to Poroy or Ollantaytambo. From here you will travel by private van to Cusco and back to your hotel. Arrival times vary depending on traffic and connections but should be around 8 pm.
Hiking time: 3 hours.
Meals: Breakfast at Hotel.
We also offer a special service only for you or your group, you have the power to choose the size of your group and the date of departure, we will never add other people since it will be organized only for you.
Our Salkantay plus Short Inca Trail 5 Days private service, includes additional items such as:
We offer 3 kinds of service, each with different price ranges and you can book in any of these services according to your convenience, we just need you to be a minimum of 02 people to organize your trip on the date that suits you, all our services are 100 % guaranteed.
We are a direct TOUR OPERATOR that never passes clients to other agencies as most agencies do it here in Cusco to save operating costs with poor quality.
We will make the trip even if there are only 02 people in your group.
What is the difficulty of the Ancascocha trek?
The Ancascocha Inca Trail is cataloged from moderate to difficult trek. Due to its high elevation on the passes as Huayanay. Where you reach 4,650 m / 15,255 ft. So travelers planning to hike this trek need acclimatization to the altitude. In some sections of the Ancascocha trek, you will go uphill for 2 or 3 hours. Which means you need to be relatively fit. So you can enjoy this scenic hiking trail.
What is the elevation of the Ancascocha trek?
The start of the Ancascocha Inca Trail is 3,205 m / 10,512 ft. at the village of Soqma, and the highest elevation you get is 4,650 m / 15,255 ft. at Huayanay pass. The rest of the hike is still at a high altitude. Remember the plan B for this trek is riding a horse for the difficult parts, So you can still make it to the highest point and then continue the hike downhill.
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