This hike is an amazing option for anyone who wants to see it all – Rainbow Mountain, Machu Picchu, the Inca Trail, Ausangate, and the Red Valley. From a challenging, high-altitude hike that includes incredible scenery over three mountain passes to the cloudy forest and ruins on the famous Inca Trail – this one shouldn’t be missed!
See the 5 Biggest Attractions in the Cusco Region all in one hike!
Machu Picchu (twice!) ✓ Rainbow Mountain ✓ Inca Trail ✓ Ausangate Mountain ✓ Red Valley ✓
The Ausangate (Ow-Sun-GAH-tay), Rainbow Mountain, & Machu Picchu Trek, without a doubt, gives you the most bang for your buck when it comes to any hiking trip in the Cusco region. This is an amazing option for anyone who wants to see it all – from a challenging, high-altitude hike that includes incredible scenery over three mountain passes to the cloudy forest and ruins on the famous Inca Trail. Along the way, you’ll also get the bonus of seeing unique wildlife, getting close to the glacier of Ausangate – the 2nd highest mountain in Peru – and finally hiking into the jewel of Peru – Machu Picchu city.
This trek will take you back in time to a place where the locals still wear traditional ponchos and hats and reward you with quiet, uncrowded trails, spectacular glacial lakes, stunning snow-capped peaks, and the unusual streaked landscapes of the Rainbow Mountains of Vinicunka.
*This is a full-service trek. A duffel bag will be provided prior to hiking for your personal items and our staff will transport the bag and all other equipment (tents, food, cooking supplies) from campsite to campsite. All you will need to carry is your day pack.*
Transportation from end to end
Private, English speaking guide
All meals as listed (can accommodate dietary restrictions with proper notice)
Duffel bags for items to be carried by porters (up to 15lbs/7kilos per person).
Clean water at every meal stop
Tents – 2 people/tent (single occupancy available for additional charge.)
All entrance fees and permits
Basic First aid kit including emergency oxygen bottle
Walking sticks (available for rent)
Lunch and Dinner - Day 6
Alcoholic Beverages of any kind
Breakfast – Day one
Sleeping Bag (can be rented for $30)
Your hotel in Cusco
Day 1: CUSCO – PACHANTA – UPIS
Your adventure awaits!
We will pick you up from your hotel early in the morning for a GORGEOUS three hour drive to our starting point in Pachanta.
You’ll meet our staff and hit the trail for 3 hours on an easy, steady incline until we get to the lunch spot for our first amazing meal of the trek.
Three more hours of this steady pace will bring us to the first campsite in Upis.
You have the option to take a dip in the hot springs in Upis if you bring a swimsuit!
Day 2: UPIS – APARA PASS – PUKA QOCHA
Hope you’re feeling refreshed!
After breakfast, we’ll start the 3 hour climb to our first mountain pass – the Arapa Pass (4850m/15908 ft).
We’ll spend a little time here to celebrate our accomplishment before rewarding our legs and lungs with a descent to our next campsite.
We will reach camp at Puka Qocha where the chef will be waiting with Andean happy hour and dinner.
Day 3: PUKA QOCHA – YANA QOCHA
Earning our bragging rights today!
After breakfast, we’ll start the 2 hour trek around the Ausangate glacier to the Puka Pass (16,370ft) where we’ll find the most beautiful turquoise, crystal clear lake surrounded by llamas, alpacas, and the snow-capped peak of Ausangate – the second highest mountain in Peru.
Just when you think it can’t get more beautiful, we’ll start to descend for 2 hours and find our first views of the famous rainbow mountains until we get to lunch.
With a full stomach, we’ll hike for another 1.5 hours to the 3rd and final mountain pass – Warmisaya (14,370ft). We can spend as much time as we want here before hiking the last 30 minutes to our campsite.*
*Before dinner, if the weather is nice, you will have the option to do an additional 1.5 hour round trip hike to Rainbow Mountain for sunset.
Day 4: YANA QOCHA – RAINBOW MOUNTAIN – OLLANTAYTAMBO
Ready for a shower yet?
We’ll start the day off early with a 30 minute hike to Rainbow Mountain. We’ll have the site to ourselves for the morning and can spend as much time here as we want.
When we are ready to go, we will take the off-the-beaten-path trail through the spectacular red valley for 2 hours and will be treated to stunning sights around every corner.
After reaching our lunch spot in Vinicunka, we will take a van for 3.5 hours to Ollantaytambo where you’ll have a hotel with a comfy bed and hot shower for the night.
Day 5: OLLANTAYTAMBO – INCA TRAIL – AGUAS CALIENTES
A change of scenery, but the fun’s not over!
We’ll have breakfast at the hotel before taking a scenic train ride to the start of the short Inca Trail – KM 104.
We’ll climb through the cloudy forest on a trail and a maze of stone steps and Inca ruins until we reach the Inca site of Wiñay Wayna (Forevery Young). This is a tough day, but we’ll be with you for every step and it will feel amazing at the end.
From Wiñay Wayna, we will have a bite to eat and walk on an easy path to the entrance of Machu Picchu – the Sun Gate.
After celebrating this incredible accomplishment, we’ll hike down into Machu Picchu city for a quick look around before heading to Aguas Calientes and another nice hotel for the evening.
Day 6: MACHU PICCHU – CUSCO
The icing on the cake!
Today we go back to Machu Picchu (yes, you’ll get to visit Machu Picchu twice!) for a 2 hour guided tour of the mysterious citadel.
You have the option to add a Huayna Picchu climb or Machu Picchu mountain climb (if you book tickets in advance!) if you want to do something extra within the city.
When you have explored all the highlights, you’ll take the bus back to Aguas Calientes for lunch or a quick snack before your train back to Ollantaytambo.
Our van will be waiting there to take you back to your hotel in Cusco.