About Inca Trail (Capaq Nan trail)
This portion of the Inca trail (the Capaq Nan trail leading from the village of Ollantaytambo) to the citadel ruins of Machu Picchu is by far the most popular for for trekking. The trail passes through jungle-forest and mountainous terrain with it's highest elevation point at well over 4000m. There are several ruins along the way including some impressive Incan farming terraces and a well-built fort, as well as a few small modern-day settlements. It is recommended that trekkers reach Inti-Pata (the Sun Gate marking the entrance to Machu Picchu) early enough to catch the sunrise.
Trail from Cuzco to Machu Picchu
Last edited on Mar 24, 10 1:07 AM.
Contributors: Show History
First To Review: Eric M.
Oct 26, 2008
Hiking the Inca Trail was incredible! I hiked with my husband and two kids (ages 9 11) and we all agree that this is one of our favorite life experiences. The first day was a pretty easy hike through small mountain communities where we were greeted by the locals as we passed through. The second day took us to the uninhabited part of the trail. We had to work hard to make it to the high pass at almost 14,000 feet - and incredible views. The third day was a beautiful hike down through the cloud forest to the campsite for the last night - which includes a small bar where one can buy beer and Fanta! And the final day started with an exciting hour long hike through the dark that brought us to the Sun Gate to watch the sunrise. And then we saw it - Machu Picchu! The rest of the day was spent exploring the ancient city in the mountains and enjoying the satisfaction of having completed a successful hike.
Feb 12, 2009
I believe the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu is really overrated. The time and cost it takes to book and plan this trip is ridiculous. They limit the number of tourists to save on the trail, but they have 100's of porters carrying people's things, food, and all kinds of supplies. You do not get minium experience, you get all the bells and whistles including the Swan cake on the last day. We did an alternate trail and had a great time, spent a fraction of the money, scheduled it that week, and we got to rough it just a bit (we slept in hostels every night).
Oct 1, 2007
I had a great time hiking this trail. Sure there were tons of people, and yes I joined a tour group so that I could outsource the tourist permit application stuff, but it was still awesome. The trail stars off in what feels like a European mountain setting that gradually transforms into a mountainous jungle environment. Imagine ultra-steep mountains covered in lush greenery from head to toe. It was incredible.