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Vilcabamba Trek to Espiritu Pampa 7D / 6N

Created with Sketch. Vilcabamba, Espiritu Pampa, Cusco
Ranking
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Duration

7D/6N

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Tour Type

Specific Tour

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Group Size

12 people

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Languages

Español, Ingles

Overview

Vilcabamba Trek to Espiritu Pampa, Following the Inca trail towards the Vilcabamba mountain range, the Incas, lead by Manco Inca II, saught refuge from the eastern invasion of this area. The resistance lasted approximately 40 years, with the fall of the Inca Empire taking place in 1572.

The last capital of the Incas in resistance, known to them as Vilcabamba, was named Espiritu Pampa by the Spanish.

We will enjoy an adventure which will take us along historic trails used by the rebel Incas, as well as their pursuers. They have been used in the same way by adventurers and explorers such as Hiram Bingham, Gene Savoy, Peter Frost, Vincent Lee, among a few others. The geography is spectacular, trekking through ecological levels of Quechua, suni, puna and rupa rupa, reaching a minimum altitude of 500 masl / 1640ft and a maximum altitude of 3860 masl / 12664 ft.

As far as temperatures go, we will only have one “cold” night, the other nights will be warmer and fresher. During the day we should expect warm temperatures and a high level of humidity, characteristic of the high jungle. We have just one high pass of 3860 masl / 12664 ft, in the puna level, where we might feel the cold. Since it is a jungle area, we might expect some rains as well.

Pre-trek briefing:
You will have a thorough briefing with your guide 1 or 2 days before your trek. Your guide will meet you at our office in Cusco and you can take this opportunity to ask questions and make any final preparations.
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    Activities: Trekking Adventure
    Difficulty Levels: 4 of 5
    Maximum Altitude: 4650 masl / 15255 ft.
    Accommodation: 6 nights camp
    Departures Day: Daily Departures.
    Starts: Pick up at your accommodation in Cusco around 4:30 AM
    Ends: Drop-off at your accommodation in Cusco around 7:45 PM

Itinerary

Day 1: Cusco – Abra Malaga – Santa María – Huancacalle
We leave the city of Cusco very early in the morning to travel through the Sacred Valley of the Incas, up to abra Malaga (4300 masl / 14108 ft), from where begin our steep descent into the high jungle of the southern Andes. We cross fields of fruit trees, coca, tea, coffee etc., in a warm climate.
We arrive at Santa Maria, a small town where we will have a short rest.
We continue our journey passing by Chaullay, a turning in the road which leads to the warm and friendly city of Quillabamba. Arriving in the town of Huancacalle (2995 masl / 9826 ft), we have lunch and rest before our walk in the afternoon.
We begin our trek taking a trail which leads us to the archaeological site of Rosaspata – Vitcos. This important ritual site, is where the leader Manco Inca II was killed. Next we visit the site of Vitcos with its ceremonial rocks, on the way to Ñusta Hispana. Here we find water channels, some ruined buildings, and the White Rock or Yurac Rumi: an amazing carved stone with a representation of the Chakana or Inca Cross, as well as other carvings.
We return to Huancacalle following an original Inca trail, to have dinner and spend the night.

Shuttle to Huancacalle: 6½ to 7 hour approximately.
Hiking distance: 6 km / 3.7 miles
Hiking time: 3½ to 4 hour approximately.
Difficulty Levels: Easy
Climate: hot in the day and warm in the night.
Acomodation: Camping.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner (Plus snacks and afternoon tea time)
Maximum Altitude: 3630 Masl / 11909 ft.
Minimum Altitude: 2954 masl / 9694 ft.
Day 2: Huancacalle - Vilcabamba La Nueva - Abra Collpajasa - Ututo
We leave Huancacalle for the town of New Vilcabamba, founded by the Spanish. We follow the path uphill, crossing the ecological levels Quechua and suni to the Collpajasa pass, the highest point on our trek.
We begin our descent, finding on our way an ancient crossroads, sadly destroyed by the road. We follow a beautiful path along the banks of the Pampacona River, entering the high jungle. We arrive at the site named Ututo, where we will spend the night after a long day walk…

Hiking distance: 20 km / 13.1 miles
Hiking time: 9½ to 10 hour approximately.
Difficulty Levels: Challenging
Climate: hot in the day and warm in the night.
Acomodation: Camping.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner (Plus snacks and afternoon tea time)
Maximum Altitude: 3860 masl / 12664 ft.
Minimum Altitude: 2960 masl / 9711 ft.
Day 3: Ututo - Huayna Pukara - Vista Alegre
We leave our campsite to descend to the Huayna Pukara sector, the last point of resistance by the Inca army. A spectacular location for this last stand through an ambush, which was betrayed with the previous Spanish victory. The trek is through a semi tropical forest.
Our trail finally leads us to the school of Vista Alegre, where we have dinner and spend the night.

Hiking distance: 14 km / 8.7 miles
Hiking time: 6-7 hour approximately.
Difficulty Levels: Challenging
Climate: hot in the day and warm in the night.
Acomodation: Camping.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner (Plus snacks and afternoon tea time)
Maximum Altitude: 2960 masl / 9711 ft.
Minimum Altitude: 2017 masl / 6617 ft.
Day 4: Vista Alegre - Concebidayoq
We continue our path following the legendary route of the last rebel Inkas fleeing the Spanish invasion. We will enjoy this Inka Trail passing a fascinating rainforest on where flora and fauna join the history to complete this hike. We will get our campsite in Concebidayoq on where we will dinner and camp

Distance to walk: 16 Km. / 10.2 mile
Hiking time: 6 to 7 hours approximately.
Difficulty Levels: Easy
Climate: tropical warm.
Acomodation: Camping.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner (Plus snacks)
Maximum Altitude: 2017 masl / 6617 ft.
Minimum Altitude: 1498 masl / 4915 ft.
Day 5: Concebidayoq - Espiritupampa
A short walk today to the campsite of Vilcabamba (Espiritu Pampa). We leave our campsite to follow the trail towards Vilcabamba, the last capital of the Tawantinsuyo.
We walk the “Thousand Steps”, an Inca trail leading to Vilcabamba. Arriving at the campsite, we set up camp and begin our tour of the archaeological complex, visiting all the sectors open to tourists. We will stop to eat and then continue our tour, later we return to the campsite, have dinner and spend the night.

Distance Travelled: 5 Km. / 2.7 mile
Hiking time: 2 to 1 hours approximately.
Difficulty Levels: Easy
Climate: tropical warm.
Acomodation: Camping.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner (Plus snacks)
Maximum Altitude: 1498 masl / 4914 ft.
Minimum Altitude: 1449 masl / 4753 ft.
Day 6: Espiritupampa - Kiteni
A mixed trip today. Leaving our campsite at Vilcabamba, we walk towards Azulmayo, where our private transport is waiting to take us to the town of Kiteni, where we have lunch, dinner and spend the night.

From Espiritupampa to Azulmayo (trek) - Check distances below

Distance Travelled: 8 Km. / 4.9 mile
Hiking time: 2 to 3 hours approximately.
Difficulty Levels: Easy
From Azulmayo to Kiteni: 4½ to 5 hour approximately.
Climate: tropical warm.
Acomodation: Camping.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner (Plus snacks)
Maximum Altitude: 1449 masl / 4753 ft.
Minimum Altitude: 593 masl / 1945 ft.
Day 7: Kiteni - Quillabamba - Cuzco
We enjoy a visit to “Siete Tinajas”, water falls with many small pools. We leave in our private transport for the city of Cusco, where we arrive at night.

Climate: tropical warm.
Shuttle to Cusco:6 hours by bus from Kiteni to Cusco.
Meals: Breakfast and Lunch.
Maximum Altitude: 2429 masl / 7972 ft.
Minimum Altitude: 2040 masl / 6692 ft.

Include:

  • Private transportation Cuzco - Huancacalle
  • Guide service in Spanish/ English
  • Sleeping liner
  • Pillow
  • Inflatable sleeping pad
  • Cook and assistant
  • Cooking equipment
  • Food (7 breakfast, 7 lunch, 6 dinner)
  • Daily tea service
  • Dining equipment including chairs and tables
  • Cooking, eating and bathroom tents
  • Vegetarian menu at no extra cost
  • Two person tents (3-people capacity tent – 4 seasons), single tents available for extra cost
  • Mule-handlers
  • Mules
  • Saddled horse (for every 6 passengers there is one saddled horse)
  • First-aid kit
  • Emergency oxygen bottle
  • Private Transportation Kiteni – Cuzco

Not Included:

  • Sleeping bag (can be rented from us)
  • Day 7 lunch in Aguas Calientes
  • Travel insurance
  • Tips for the crew (muleteers, chef and guide)
  • Hiking poles (can be rented from us)

Tour's Location

Created with Sketch. Vilcabamba, Espiritu Pampa, Cusco

Tour Map Vilcabamba Trek to Espiritu Pampa 7D / 6N

FAQs

What Should I Bring for the Tour?
– Original passport
– For students: ISIC card
– Insurance card/certificate
– Walking stick ( Highly Recomemded )
– Hiking boots
– Waterproof jacket or rain poncho
– Warm jacket
– Hat and gloves
– 2-4 t-shirts
– 2 pairs of pants (1 for hiking, 1 for camp)
– Long underwear for sleeping
– Hand sanitizer
– Comfortable trousers
– Sun hat or cap
– Sunscreen
– Insect repellent
– Water
– Toiletries/ Toilet paper
– Personal medication
– Camera
– Flashlight or headlamp
– Extra money for tips/snacks/beer.
How much is to enjoy hotspings?
In Santa Tereza - Cocalmayo, You will find the best hotspings in the area, it only cost 10 soles or 3.5 USD dollars.
When Machu Picchu open and close ?
Machu Picchu Open at 6:00 am and Close at 5:00 pm.
How long people usually take in machu picchu?
Usually people stay in Machu Picchu for 5 hours then they prefer to go to Aguas Calientes for lunch or spend sometime in the town.
Do you serve vegetarian food in machu picchu jungle tour?
Yes we do . Please when you book this tours don't forget to tell us if yu are vegetarian or you have any kind of allergy.
Huayna Picchu VS Machu Picchu Montaña
Many people ask about Huayna Picchu and Machu Picchu Montaña and few people know the difference about this 2 climbing hike mountains in Machu Picchu.

Huayna picchu: It is located at the northeast area and it is famous because since the summit you can enjoy a beautiful landscape and Machu Picchu.

huaynapicchu have a steep road and people arrive to the summit in approximately 45 minutes hike up. In the summit you can enjoy and take picture for not longer then 20 minutes. This is because huaynaPicchu pick do not have a big space and not to of people can login there.

if you plan hike up to Huayna Picchu You need to book in advance . it cost 25 American dollars per person.

Huayna Picchu altitude: 2789 masl.

Montaña Machu Picchu: It is the taller Mountain. You need at list 3:30 hours to enjoy the hike up to this Montaña. This mountain ofer different altitudes view of Machu Picchu and also a amazing panoramic view of all machu picchu, Aguas calientes, hidroelectrica and others areas around.

In the summit you can spend longer time. this is because not lot of people go to this mountain yet because the new accest it is.

if you plan hike up to Montaña, You need to book in advance . it cost 25 American dollars per person.

Montaña altitude: 3240 masl.
How difficult is the hike?
For an average traveller or tourist, Salkantay is considered a challenging but certainly not impossible hike. Due to the physical demands, anyone who wishes to trek Salkantay should at least be moderately fit. Plus, all trekkers should spend at least 2 days in Cuzco before the trek, to get acclimatized. Being extremely fit does not grant any immunity from altitude sickness.

The entire hike is approximately 72 kilometers (approximately 45 miles), and this hiking takes place during 4 days and 3 nights. The remaining 1 day of the trek is spent at Machu Picchu. In general, Salkantay is considered to be slightly harder than the Inca Trail. Other trails, such as Choquequirao, are considered to be slightly harder than Salkantay.
What's the most challenging section of the hike?
The Salkantay Pass, at 14,760123 feet above sea level, is the most difficult section in the trail. Expect wind and cold temperatures. Some hikers might experience symptoms of altitude sickness. Symptoms will disappear as soon as you start your descent. Oxygen will be provided if needed. The Salkantay Pass, at approximately 4,650 meters above sea level is the most difficult section in the trail. These challenges are a result of several factors: the challenge of uphill climbing, bitter cold winds, low temperatures in general, and the fact that you are trekking at a low-oxygen altitude.
How Old do I have to Be?
Very young children may not enjoy this. They should be able to walk (without being carried) for 90 minutes without whining (the whining part applies to children of all ages.
Can I hike the Salkantay at any time?
Weather conditions during the rainy season makes the Salkantay trek into a risky decision. Therefore we cannot guarantee the availability of the Salkantay treks from mid-march to the end of February. If the weather is good, we will give the OK for a trek to start. If we think the safety of our porters and clients is being threatened, we will cancel the trek.
When is the best time to hike the Salkantay?
The dry season is the best time for this trek. In Cuzco, the dry season lasts from April to November, and the wet season is from December to March. From June to September are the most popular months to do the trek, due to summer vacations in Europe and the US. It is generally thought that May and October offer the best weather conditions.
Can I make the trek by myself?
Yes, it is possible for a single traveller or a small group to hike the trek by themself, without guides or porters. However, the trail is not clearly marked at all points, which makes getting lost a high possibility. This is one of the biggest advantages of hiring a tour agency like Mystic Salkantay. Our guides know the route very well.
Can I do the trek with my kids?
Children under 14 years old are not allowed to do the trek, and children who are over 14 years old should be in good physical shape and used to hiking long distances.
Can I use my mobile/cell phone on the mountain?
You will get sporadic phone coverage during the trek and there will not be anywhere whilst trekking to charge your phone.
Will there be an international cell phone on the trek?
One of the trek leaders will be carrying a satellite phone. However this is emergency use only.
What is the weather like?
Weather is very varied on this trek, due to the fact that it winds its way through wildly different terrain at different altitudes. The only place where weather is a serious concern is the Salkantay Pass, and the nearby areas. Temperatures here, and at the nearby Soraypampa campsite, can fall below freezing. The other camps are much warmer, due to their proximity to the cloud forest.
Why do I need to make a deposit?
We recommend to make your reservation in advance and we will guarantee your Spaces for this hike. Each reservation needs 50% of deposit as first payment. The final balance(50%) will be paid in Cusco(Briefing Day). About Payment you must choose where would you like to make the deposit: Payment system online ,

Paypal by Debit or Credit Card
Western Union, Money Gram
Peruvian Banking Account
We use the money from your deposit to make several important purchases, including the entrance fee to Salkantay, the entrance fee to Machu Picchu, bus tickets, and train tickets. In addition, making a deposit assures us that you will be coming on the trek, and are unlikely to cancel at the last minute. This helps us with knowing how much food to buy, how many of our guides to use for the trek, etc. The deposit is non-refundable once we receive it, because we will immediately use it to purchase the tickets mentioned above.
What happens after I make the security deposit?
First, we will send you an email to confirm your payment. Then we will contact you to offer you different hotel or hostel options in Cuzco, as well as inform you of other tours you might be interested in.

Two weeks before your tour date, we will contact you by email to request the final payment. We will also ask you where you will be staying in Cuzco, to be able to pick you up on the day of your hike.

After we receive the final payment, we will send you an email confirming your tour date and informing you of important contact information for our tour agency, as well as some final tips to prepare for the trek.
Can I change my starting date for the Salkantay?
Once we have purchased your tickets, with your security deposit, you can only change your start date if you pay an additional amount. This amount is usually around $200 USD. The reason for this is the tickets we purchase are non-refundable and non-transferable, so we are not allowed to simply change your tour date.
Is altitude sickness a problem? What should I do to avoid altitude sickness?
To avoid altitude sickness, give yourself time in Cuzco to acclimatize to the change in altitude. Two days minimum is recommended!!! Try to avoid alcohol before and during your trek, and make sure you eat lightly and drink plenty of water. Make sure to stay hydrated during the trek, don't force yourself to walk faster than your body wants to, and take frequent breaks. Drinking coca leaf tea helps a lot, and you may wish to speak with your doctor about Diamox pills.
What should I do if I get altitude sickness?
If you get altitude sickness while on the trail, let your guide know immediately. They will help you. Recognize the symptoms of altitude sickness: a headache, nausea, extreme tiredness, dizziness, and a general malaise are all symptoms.
Do you provide water during the trek?
Yes, we will give you safe drinking water at every meal and in the morning when you wake up.

In addition, there are small streams and mountain springs along the way. The water here is clean, but to be safe, you should drop in a water purification pill. Most pharmacies in Cuzco sell them.
What is the environmental impact of my trek like?
The Salkantay trek is a low-impact activity. We will only be travelling short distances by bus and train, and almost the entire trek is done by walking. We will avoid areas with endangered plants, and we will give you steps on minimizing your impact even further. For example, please give your trash to you porters at the end of the day. This helps keep the trail as clean as possible.
Are there bathrooms during the trek?
During most of the trek, there are no bathrooms, or just basic toilets. This is an inevitable part of adventure treks. Once we arrive in Aguas Calientes your hotel will have a private bathroom with hot water.
What is the food like on the Salkantay trek?
A cook accompanies every group on the Salkantay. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, and hearty snacks are provided for your hike. Meals are a mix of local specialties and international favorites. Vegetarian meals are also available upon request.
What are the guides like?
Having a good guide is an essential part of having a good trek. Because of this, Mystic Salkantay hires and works with some of the best guides in the business. Our guides are knowledgable in the areas of history, archaeology, ecology, and are natives of the Cuzco area.

In order to continue working with our guides, we pay them a higher wage than most agencies, and assure they are treated well. They are given free use of high-quality sleeping bags, mats, and good food. The same goes for our porters and horse-men.
What happens if I fall ill, can't keep up or there is an emergency?
The event is not run as a race and there is always a large discrepancy in people's walking ability. This is allowed for. There will always be a staff member at the back of the group to ensure you are not left behind and can take things at your own pace. If necessary you can be carried off the mountain by mule.
What is the food and drink like?
There will be a hot breakfast (porridge, eggs, toast, tea and coffee) to start the day, a packed lunch on the mountain or at your camp and a filling hot meal in the evening (soup, followed by rice, potato or pasta and sauce, but fresh fruit is difficult to find.) There will be ample drinking water, as we will be filling up from local water sources. This will need to be treated with iodine drops or tablets to purify the water. The staff will collect water each morning and evening for drinking and cooking. Are requested to inform the leader of the walk before departure if you have any specific dietary requirements or allergies.
What is done to protect the environment?
We are keeping to a small group so that we limit the impact we have on the surrounding environment. The Salkantay Mountain National Park is a very delicate environment.
Who will be leading the group?
We employ a number of qualified leaders. All of them speak English. They will also be a first aid qualified medical officer. They will ultimately be responsible for the running of the itinerary and the safety of your group. The itinerary is there as a guide and may change due to unusual weather patterns, the strength of the group and so on. We will do our very best to keep to the set itinerary. However we cannot be held responsible for any last minute changes that might occur. In all such circumstances, your challenge leader will have the final say.
What are the toilet/washing facilities like?
There are no toilets on the wilderness route, so you must make sure you bury all waste. Where local conditions permit, we arrange basic long drop toilets in the camps. Mountain streams will be the main washing facility! Your camp team will provide washing bowls of warm water as you arrive at camp at the end of the day's trekking. Take plenty of toilet paper with you, and antiseptic wipes / anti-bacterial hand gel.
What about hygiene?
While trekking there will be hot washing water for you in the morning and again after the walk at an agreed time in the afternoon.
What kit do I need to buy? What can I borrow?
It is extremely important that you have the right kit. Please take the time to have a good look through your kit list and contact Charity Challenge if you have any questions regarding the list.
Do we need to take our own sleeping bags and mats?
Yes, you will need to bring (or hire) a warm sleeping bag (four season or three season with silk or fleece liner) And the mat is included.

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