The Inca Trail is one of the most iconic treks in the world, known for its stunning scenery, challenging terrain, and rich history. The 4-day Inca Trail trek takes hikers through the Andes mountains, passing through Inca ruins, cloud forests, and breathtaking valleys.
The trek starts in the village of Pisacucho and covers a distance of approximately 42 kilometers (26 miles), taking hikers through several archaeological sites, including the spectacular ruins of Wiñay Wayna, before reaching the final destination of Machu Picchu.
The first day of the trek is relatively easy and is used to acclimate to the altitude and the surroundings. The trail follows the Urubamba River and passes through small villages, offering hikers a glimpse into the local culture and lifestyle.
The second day of the trek is the most challenging, as hikers climb to the highest point of the trek, known as Dead Woman’s Pass, at an altitude of 4,215 meters (13,828 feet) above sea level. The steep climb can be difficult, but the reward is the stunning views of the surrounding mountains and valleys.
The third day of the trek is perhaps the most scenic, passing through lush cloud forests and several Inca ruins, including the impressive site of Wiñay Wayna, which features a series of terraces and fountains.
The fourth and final day of the trek starts early in the morning, with hikers arriving at Machu Picchu in time for sunrise. The first glimpse of Machu Picchu from the Sun Gate is a breathtaking moment and the culmination of a challenging and rewarding journey.
Overall, the 4-day Inca Trail trek is a once-in-a-lifetime experience that offers a unique combination of adventure, culture, and history. It is important to note that due to its popularity, permits for the Inca Trail are limited and should be booked well in advance. Additionally, hikers are required to hike with a licensed guide, and porters are often hired to carry camping gear and supplies.
What to Bring To the Inca Trail 4 Days
If you are planning to do the Salkantay Trek, it is important to pack appropriately to ensure a comfortable and enjoyable experience. Here are some essential items to bring with you:
- Hiking boots: The Salkantay Trek involves hiking over varied terrain, so it is important to bring a comfortable and sturdy pair of hiking boots that provide good support.
- Daypack: A small daypack is essential for carrying water, snacks, and personal items during the trek.
- Warm clothing: The weather can be unpredictable, and temperatures can drop significantly at night, so bring warm layers, such as a fleece jacket or a down jacket.
- Rain gear: It can rain at any time during the trek, so bring a waterproof jacket and pants to stay dry.
- Sleeping bag: Most tour operators provide sleeping bags, but it is recommended that you bring your own for comfort.
- Trekking poles: Trekking poles can help you navigate the steep terrain and provide support for your knees.
- Sun protection: Bring sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat to protect yourself from the sun at high altitudes.
- Water bottle: Bring a refillable water bottle to stay hydrated during the trek. Water can be purified with water purification tablets or a filter.
- Snacks: Bring energy bars, nuts, and other snacks to keep you energized during the trek.
- Camera: The Salkantay Trek offers breathtaking views, so don’t forget to bring a camera or a smartphone to capture the memories.
In addition to these essentials, it is recommended to bring a small towel, wet wipes, insect repellent, and a first-aid kit with basic supplies such as band-aids, pain relievers, and any necessary medications. It is also important to bring cash for tipping your guides and porters, as well as for purchasing snacks or souvenirs from local vendors.