From:

USD$410 per person 8-10 persons

CHOQUEQUIRAO-5 DAYS

The name Choquequiraw mean “Cradle of Gold”in Quechua. This site is another “lost City of the Incas”. Rediscoverd in the later part of the 20th century, it is located high on a ridge almost 5,540 ft above the Apurimac river and surrounded by towering Salkantay and Humanty snow-capped peaks.

The site was build during the Inca empire by Tupac Inca Yapanqui around 1490. The City was dedicated to worship “pachamama” -mother earth, the “Apus”-mountain God, the river and nature. Choquequirao finally burned down and left deserted after the execution of the last Inca, Tupac Amaru in 1572.

This fascinating trek takes you to the canyon of the Apurimac River, the main tributary of the Amazon. We’ll explore amazing Choquequirau, “Cradle of Gold”. These extensive ruins are just as significant as Machu Picchu in many respects. Along the way we’ll take in the magnificent scenery and exotic flora and fauna, while walking in the footsteps of the mighty Incas

Dificulty
: Challanging
Tour Code
: CHO5
Activities
: Camping and hiking
Group Tour
: US$420 per person,6 Person mini
Departures
: Upon Request
Private
: From:US$650 per person for group of 8-10 people
Seasson
: January-December
Start – End
: Cusco

Day 1: Cusco – Cachora – Chiquisca

Bright and early at 5:00 a.m., we’ll pick you up at your Cusco hotel to drive to Cachora (4 hours by car). While we have breakfast at the base of the Padrayoc range (the highest peak is 5,482 mt/17,986 ft), the crew will prepare the horses for the trek. Today’s 6-hour hike affords great views of the Padrayoc and Wayna Cachora snow-covered peaks, while walking alongside small farms on the steep mountainsides. From Capuliyoc, where condors may soar above, the descent toward the Apurímac Canyon begins and the vegetation changes from agave and tuna cactus to dwarf tree forests. We’ll have a welcome lunch at Chiquisqa (1,950 mt/6,398 ft). Our campsite is in Chiquisca at 1,550 mt/5,085 ft. Meals: B, L, D.

Day 2: Chiquisca – Choquequirao Ruins

After breakfast at 6:00 a.m., we’ll walk down to the Apurímac River (1,550 mt/5,085 ft) at the base of a deep canyon—in some places twice as deep as the Grand Canyon. After a short rest, we’ll hike up to Choquequirao. The first two to three hours are a steep climb, but it levels off and we walk the rest of the way surrounded by beautiful vegetation with several varieties of delicate orchids. At around 3 p.m. we arrive at Choquequirao with time to explore and contemplate the view of the canyon we just walked through. Again, we hope to see the flight of the condors, the largest flying birds in the world with their 10-foot wingspan. We’ll make camp near Choquequirao at 3,033 mt/9,9951 ft. Meals: B, L, D.

Day 3: Choquequirao

We have the entire day—and we’ll need it—to explore this stunning Inca settlement. As mysterious as Machu Picchu, early Spaniards knew of this place, yet its remoteness protected it. French explorers visited it in the 19th century, and in 1909 Hiram Bingham was first to scientifically investigate the site. Some speculate that the emperor Topa Inca had it built as a personal spiritual retreat to rival his father’s magnificent estate at Machu Picchu. Whoever built this place, it was undoubtedly an elite settlement, built for ceremonial purposes and occupied by Inca nobility. The Apurimac River roars distantly 1,450 m./4,800 ft. below, visible on either side of a steep ridge to which clings the Inca city. As we approach the heart of the city, a sweep of enormous curved terraces leads our eye to an artificial hill and ceremonial platform overlooking the main plaza. Here afternoon thermal currents bring Andean condors soaring over the complex of temples, mausoleums, royal residences, ritual baths, great gathering halls, storehouses, hidden gardens, and a giant stairway, all still standing—testimony to the skill of Inca engineers. Excavation work at the site is very recent, and archaeologists are continually uncovering hitherto unknown areas and structures. The steep mountainside below the main plaza features several clusters of newly discovered buildings, including the Ridge Group and the Waterfall Temple, an intriguing ceremonial complex facing the cascades of a steep ravine. Meals: B, L, D.

Day 4: Choquequirao to Chiquisca

This morning we start our walk back toward Santa Rosa, where we have lunch. We then continue descending for another 2 hours until we reach Rosalina Beach at 1450m/4756 ft, where we might have time to take a refreshing dip in the waters of the Apurimac River. Crossing the river, we can take time to cool off in a swimming hole among the huge boulders that line the river. We return to the shade of the fruit and avocado trees at Chiquisca, where we make our final camp. Meals: B, L, D.

Day 5: Chiquisca to Cachora

This morning we hike out of the Apurimac Canyon, with the river receding to a distant, white ribbon below us and the glaciers of the Vilcabamba Range filling the sky ahead. We make our way back to Abra Capuliyoc, where we stop for lunch. In the afternoon, we continue our two-hour return trek to Cachora, where private transport will be waiting to take us back to Cusco. Our estimated arrival time is around 6:00 p.m. Meals: B, L.

PRICING

Group Service: US$420 Per Person

Private Service Per Person:

  • 2 Person: US$650
  • 3-4 Person: US$530
  • 5-7 Person: US$490
  • 8-10 Person: US$410

Machu Picchu Extension: $220

Included:

  • Transportation from your hotel to the starting point of the trek
  • Large, double-occupancy tents, kitchen tent, dining tent, latrine
  • tent
  • Meals as in itinerary: 4 Breakfasts, 5 Lunches, 4 Dinners
  • Cook and cooking equipment
  • English speaking guide
  • Emergency first aid kit
  • Oxygen tank
  • Horses to carry all equipment
  • 1 extra horse
  • Transportation from end of trail to your hotel
  • Sleeping bag/mat ($30 refundable deposit)
  • Park entrance fee

Not Included

  • Breakfast 1st day/Dinner last day
  • Tips, taxes, international airfare and personal expenses
  • Hotel accommodations in the city

Gear list

  • Passport
  • Backpack or duffle bag
  • Warm clothing/thermals
  • Trekking shoes
  • Sandals
  • Raincoat
  • Sunscreen
  • Flashlight
  • Raincoat
  • Insect repellent
  • Bottled water
  • Personal first aid kit
  • Bathing suit and towel
  • Hat
  • Sunglasses
  • Camera, film and batteries

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