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The Best of Cusco in 4 Days: Sacred Valley Tour + Machu Picchu Tour + Alternative Rainbow Mountain Trek & Community Visit + Humantay Lake Tour

USD $663.00

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City: Cusco, Mountains // Activities: Trekking to the Rainbow Mountains, Humantay Lake tour, Visit of Machu Picchu, Visit of Pisac, Moray, Salt Mines of Maras & Ollantaytambo //

 Why you'll love this experience:

 Passionate and experienced guides that are happy to share incredible stories with you.

 Hike only for 45 minutes instead of 3 hours to the alternative rainbow mountain.

 Don't rush from site to site like during the typical touristic tour to the Sacred Valley. Enjoy more time and better understand the culture and history of every place we visit together.

 Discover the Machu Picchu and make this world wonder a highlight of your Peruvian adventure.

 

The Sacred Valley, the Machu Picchu, the Rainbow Mountains and the Humantay lake  are waiting for you. Are you ready for 4 days packed with 4 unforgettable tours in Cusco, the city of the Incas? First, during the sacred valley tour, you will explore Pisac, the archaeological site of Moray, the salt mines of Maras and Ollantaytambo, the last stop before heading to Machu Picchu. Another highlight will be Machu Picchu, one of the 7 wonders of the world and the most popular tourist attraction in Peru. You will enjoy a day tour to Machu Picchu that will take you back in time, allowing you to get to know everything about Pachacutec, Hiram Bingham and all the important historical events related to it. Apart from the Sacred Valley and Machu Picchu you will also explore the postcard-like rainbow mountains that are hidden in the Andean mountains South of Cusco. However, this is the alternative tour to the Rainbow Mountains, not the typical trekking tour to the Vinicunca Rainbow Mountain where you are with hundreds of other tourists. On this tour, you will be almost alone (apart from typical Andean wildlife such as alpacas, llamas and condors) because this tour is still quite unknown yet and you will only trek for around 1 hour. Last but not least, you will visit the Humantay lake. This trekking tour is a little more intense than the tour to the Rainbow Mountain Palccoyo but you will be rewarded with views of one of Peru's most impressive lakes with crystal-clear water. 

 

Please let us know which of the following options you prefer:

Expedition (normal) train:
The Expedition train is a tourist standard service with semi-panoramic windows. On board, you will be offered a simple snack that consists of a cold or hot drink and a sweet or salty option. Watch the video about the Expedition train.

Vistadome train:
The Vistadome train is the more luxurious option that has carriages with panoramic windows to the sides and on the ceiling so you can enjoy the landscape on comfortable leather seats. On board, you will be offered a snack elaborated with regional Andean products. On the way back, there will be a 20-minute show on board including a typical dance offered by the staff. Watch the video about the Vistadome train. 

Our recommendation is to spend the night before the Machu Picchu day tour in Aguas Calientes so that you sleep a little longer and have a more relaxed experience.

Machu Picchu Day Tour with Expedition Train with/without Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain:
 Departure time of train Return time of train
5:05 am 2:55 pm
7:00 pm (the night before from Ollantaytambo) 6:20 pm

Machu Picchu Day Tour with Vistadome Train:
 Departure time of train Return time of train
7:05 am 4:43 pm

 

If you want to take the Vistadome train and visit Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain, you have the following options:

Departure time of train Return time of train
7:05 am (Vistadome 301) 4:43 pm (Vistadome)
7:00 pm (Expedition) (the night before from Ollantaytambo)

4:43 pm (Vistadome)

 

Itinerary*:

*the following itinerary is just exemplary; you're free to choose the order of the tours with off-days (f.e. tour 2, day off, tour 1). 

This Experience Touristic Sacred Valley
Group Size 2-8 15-20
Participants Spanish/English (%) 5/95 70/30
Option to get train to
Aguas Calientes
Yes Yes, but miss Pisac
Guide The best possible Professional
Time on sites 1 hour 30 minutes
Sites visited Pisac + Moray
+ Maras + Urubamba
+ Ollantaytambo
Chinchero + Moray
+ Maras + Urubamba
+ Ollantaytambo + Pisac
Transport with Small to large van Large van to bus
Schedule 6.30am - 7pm 7am - 7pm

You will be picked up from your hotel in Cusco at 6:30 am and then we will head to the town of Pisac to visit one of the most imposing archaeological sites of the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Here, we can see the impressive ruins of Pisac while enjoying unique views of the entire valley from the top. The next stop is the artisan handicraft market of Pisac, the perfect place to find typical souvenirs. At around 10:00 am, we will get to know the archaeological site of Moray. Here, we will face a construction that is a clear proof of the extraordinary agricultural progresses that the Incas developed regarding the management of climates, soils and humidity. Two hours later we will head to the salt mines of Maras, which are not far from Moray. Together with your guide, you will enter the mines, learn about their history and have enough time to take some pictures. If you want to you can buy some of the special salt to take it home and use it for cooking (recommended by Gastón Acurio, one of the most renown chefs in Peru).
Photo Sac

At 1:30 pm, it's time to continue to Urubamba where we will have lunch consisting of various Peruvian culinary specialties. Once we're ready to go, we will drive along the Urubamba river heading towards Ollantaytambo (arrival at 3:00 pm), a very important temple for the Inca known as "the last living Inca city". We will explore its ceremonial centres, observe the impressive rock formations and find out more about the history behind it. Now that we have visited the last site of the tour, you can either return to Cusco with the guide at 6:30 pm, stay in Ollantaytambo or head on to Aguas Calientes.

If you choose the Expedition train you will be picked up at your hotel two hours before the departure time of the train, if you choose the Vistadome train you will be picked up 1 hour before departure time (for all the hotels close to the Plaza de Armas) and head to the train station where you will board the train and make your trip to to the village of "Aguas Calientes" (2000 m).
Upon arrival at the train station, our guide will be waiting for you to accompany you to the bus that brings you to the entrance of Machu Picchu. It takes about 30 minutes by bus until reaching the incredible Wonder of the world "the Sanctuary of Machu Picchu", known as "the lost city of the Incas". When you arrive at the citadel of Machu Picchu, you will pass through the control where you receive your ticket. From this point on, the private tour will start and you will visit the main areas of the city such as the main square, the circular tower, the sacred solar clock, the royal quarters, the temple of the three windows and the cemeteries for approximately 2.5 hours. At the end, you will have free time to take a walk through the citadel and to visit Machu Picchu, the sun gate etc.
Photo machu picchu day tour exploor peru
Then, you will return to the town of Aguas Calientes and you have the option to eat in one of the many restaurants (not included). Afterwards, you will take the train back and arrive in Poroy or in Ollantaytambo (please arrive at the station 30 minutes before the departure time of your train). When you arrive at the train station in Poroy/Ollantaytambo, please leave the station because outside our guide will be waiting for you to take you to your hotel in Cusco.
 
This Experience Normal Rainbow Mountain
Mountain Palccoyo (3 Rainbow Mountains) Vinicunca (1 large mountain)
Daily Tourists 50-100 800-1000
Hike Duration 45-60 minutes 2-3 hours
Schedule 4.00 am - 5:00 pm 3:00 am - 4:00 pm
Time on top 2 hours 40 minutes
Guide The best possible The best possible
Group Size 2-10 2-10
Participants ES/EN (%) 5/95 5/95
Transport with Small to large van Small to large van
Known since 2017 2015

Our guide will meet you at your hotel in Cusco between 4:00 - 4:30 am (please be ready from 4:00 am onwards) for the Tres Rainbow hike in a private bus. Being on the road for a little more than an hour, we will visit a small village that is famous for its delicious bread. Here, you will try some of it and you'll also have the chance to visit the bathrooms. Shortly afterwards, you will arrive at the restaurant to enjoy an energetic breakfast with an incredible view over the valley. 
At around 7:00 am, we will be entering the remote landscape, seeing locals with their animals on the street, children leaving to school and lots of wild alpacas. Once we arrive at the Palccoyo community, we will visit its potato museum (created in collaboration with exploor). Next, we will head up to the parking lot (you can use the bathrooms here) from where you can see the first of the three Rainbow Mountains. After our guide has shared some helpful tips, the hike to the other Rainbow Mountains will begin. Roughly an hour later you have reached the plateau at 4.900 m from where you can see all three rainbow mountains and the beautiful Andean landscapes. With some luck you will even get a sneak peak of the Ausangate mountain (6.375 m / 21,000 ft.), Cusco's highest mountain. Now is the time for a warm coca or muña tea and some artisanal chocolate made by our "abuelita". At this point, you will learn more about the history and about the fascinating nature that surrounds you. Afterwards, you will hike for 20 minutes until reaching the stone forest from where you can take postcard like pictures (this is optional as it's the toughest and steepest part; you can also stay at the plateau and meet up with the others later).
alternative rainbow mountain cusco exploor
The descent will take approximately 45 minutes before we arrive at the car (toilet stop) and then head back down to the community. Here, you will have another chance to interact with the community members and their alpacas while learning more about their lifestyle. Following this, we will be on the road for approximately one hour driving to our lunch spot where some delicious Peruvian specialties are waiting for us. Once everyone is satisfied, we will return to Cusco and drop you off at your hotel at approximately 4:30 pm with some unforgettable memories.
Others With us
Arrival With other groups Be the first one up there
Guide Professional The best possible
Participants ES/EN (%) 70/30 5/95
Transport with Large van to bus Small to large van

At 3:30 am in the morning, you will be picked up from your hotel in Cusco (please be ready from 3:15 am onwards). Then, you will be on the road for around 3.5 hours. During the trip by bus, you can see the beautiful landscapes, typical villages of the Andes, amazing mountains, valleys and crop fields. You will stop in the colonial town of Mollepata for breakfast.
Afterwards, you will start the hiking tour from Soraypampa (3800 m), which is aprox. 2 hours away from the lake. On the way to the Humantay lagoon, you will be able see the snow-capped Salkantay (6375 m), the Humantay mountain (5835 m), inter-Andean valleys surrounded by mountains and the unique flora and fauna of the Andes. Having reached the highest point of 4200 m (Humantay Lagoon), you will have enough time to explore the surroundings and to take some photos. Then, you will descend 1 hour to take the bus and to return to Molletpata, where a delicious lunch awaits you. Afterwards, you will return to Cusco so that you arrive at approximately 4:00 pm.

 Included:

Sacred Valley Tour: 

  • Private transport with hotel pick-up from all hotels close to the Plaza de Armas (see "Pickup / Drop-off" info below) 
  • Fluent English/ Spanish speaking local guide
  • Artisanal chocolate snack
  • Lunch buffet 

Machu Picchu Tour:

  • Round trip train tickets 
  • Private transfer from your hotel (for all the hotels close to the Plaza de Armas) in Cusco to the train station in Poroy/Ollantaytambo and back to Cusco with drop-off at your hotel
  • Professional English-speaking private guide
  • Bus transfer from Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu
  • Entrance to Machu Picchu Sanctuary
  • Entrance to Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain (if you choose the option above)

Alternative Rainbow Mountain Tour: 

  • Private transport with hotel pick-up from all hotels/hostels/AirBnBs close to the Plaza de Armas (see "Pickup / Drop-off" info below) 
  • Fluent English/ Spanish speaking local guide during the Tres Rainbows hike
  • Visit of local community (donations are welcome)
  • Breakfast and lunch 
  • Artisanal chocolate snacks made by our "abuelita" (grandma) and a coca/muña tea when arriving at the mountain
  • Trekking poles
  • First-aid kit and oxygen
  • Communication radios

Humantay Lake tour:

  • Private transport with hotel pick-up from all hotels close to the Plaza de Armas (see "Pickup / Drop-off" info below) 
  • Fluent English/ Spanish speaking local guide
  • Hotel pick-up from all hotels close to the Plaza de Armas
  • Visit of the Humantay lake
  • Breakfast and lunch
  • Artisanal chocolate snacks
  • Trekking poles
  • Oxygen and first-aid kit

 Not Included:

Sacred Valley Tour:

  • Breakfast
  • Tourist ticket (partial ticket S/ 70, general ticket S/ 130 per person)
  • Entrance to Maras Salt Mines (S/ 10 per person)
  • Tips

Machu Picchu Tour:

  • Meals
  • Tips
  • Accommodation in Aguas Calientes or Ollantaytambo
    • you have the option to check for recommended places here
    • or head back to Cusco and leave with the van in the morning to Ollantaytambo
Alternative Rainbow Mountain Tour & Humantay Lake Tour:
  • Entrance to the Rainbow Mountain area and to the Humantay Lake (S/ 10 each)
  • Pick up from hotels outside of Cusco city
  • Donations to the community (you're welcome to bring unused clothes or pens, notebooks etc.) on the Alternative Rainbow Mountain tour
  • Tips for your guide

 Schedule:

  • Sacred Valley Tour: 6:30 am - 5:30 pm
  • Machu Picchu Tour: Everyday from 4:00 am to 10:00 pm
  • Alternative Rainbow Mountain Tour: 4:00 am - 5:00 pm
  • Humantay Lake tour: 3:30 am - 4:00 pm

 Duration:

  • Four 1-Day Tours

 Recommendations:

  • Spend the night before the Machu Picchu day tour in Aguas Calientes so that you sleep a little longer and have a more relaxed experience. Please let us know if you are planning to take a train to Aguas Calientes after the Sacred Valley day tour.
  • Bring change in order to pay small expenses, such as for using the restroom
  • Bring your backpack, a rain cape and layers of clothes so you'll be warm
  • Take gloves, a hat, hiking shoes + an extra pair of socks with you (in case of snow) and if you want to you can bring hiking poles as well
  • Bring sunscreen, sunglasses and some extra money 
  • Pack some snacks and coca leaves

 Terms of Reservation:

  • Minimum 1 week before (so that the train tickets can be reserved before).
  • In case you would like to climb the Huayna Picchu, please make your reservation at least 2 months in advance.
  • Minimum 2 people
  • If you are not minimum 2 people in total in your group you have the option to:
    • postpone the date of the tour
    • receive a refund
    • pay the difference to the private tour and do the private tour

     Terms of Cancellation:

    • If you cancel minimum 5 days before the start of the tour you will receive a refund of 50% (only in case the train tickets haven't been bought yet).
    • In case the entrance tickets (Machu Picchu and/or Huayna Picchu) are bought by us already (tickets that include Huayna Picchu: normally 2 months in advance to avoid booking problems due to the daily Huayna Picchu limit; Machu Picchu: approx. 1 week in advance during low season and 2 weeks during high season), the price of those tickets cannot be returned or claimed.

     Info: 

    • As a (non postgraduate) student under 25 years old you can use the discount code "mapistudent" in the checkout and you'll get a $20 discount. You need to have your valid student ID card with you for the Machu Picchu day tour, if not the discount will not be applied (if you have an ISIC card, bring it as well). On your student ID, the date of issue and the expiry date should be clearly visible and the expiry date should be in the same year as your Machu Picchu visit. 
    • The seats in the train are chosen by the train company itself; there is no possibility to influence your seat from our side.
    • Please let us know if you prefer window seats for the Vistadome train (no guarantee but we will do our best to coordinate accordingly).
    • In the case of flight delays, inconveniences with the train schedule or bad weather (rain, landslides, etc.) we do not assume any responsibility.
    • There are two-time slots for visits to Machu Picchu:
      • 6:00 - 12:00 and 12:00 - 17:30
    • If you want to go to Huayna Picchu please consider the following:
      • You have to make your reservation at least 2 months before 
      • There are 2 schedules:
        • 7:00 am - 8:00 am
        • 10:00 am - 11:00 am

       Pickup / Drop-off:

      • Pickup from your hotel (only if your hotel is close to the city center of Cusco. In case you stay further away, meet up at the Plaza de Armas - taxi cost approx. 10-15 Soles)
      • Drop-off at Plaza de Armas or Plaza de Regocijo
      • Private tours include pickup from- and drop-off at the hotel.

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         Information about the Local Guides:

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