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Kandoo Adventures: December 13th 2019

Plan your trek on the Lares trail

Kandoo's View

The Lares trek is an excellent trail for those who want to get off the ‘beaten track’ as it treks through Andean communities which have remained unchanged over centuries. You are surrounded by stunning mountains, lakes and valleys but the real interest is in the fascinating villages you trek through.

The trail starts from the Sacred Valley, so called because of its incredible fertility, and crosses a 4700 metres pass before finishing at Aguas Calientes and your tour of Machu Picchu.

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Frequently asked questions

The questions and answers below specifically relate to the Lares trail. For more general questions about trekking to Machu Picchu see here.


The Lares Trek is considered a moderate trek with no technical sections. Whilst the trek itself is not challenging, the altitude can affect people in different ways.


The Lares Trail is 20.5 miles long or 33 kilometres.


Like most treks in the area, the Lares Trail provides stunning mountain scenery. However, what makes the Lares Trail so popular is the local Andean communities that the trail passes through. Authentic weaving communities is one of the highlights.


No permit is required for the Lares Trail.


Yes. Although spaces are often available at short notice, try to book at least 1 month in advance.


The trail can be hiked throughout the year, however, the peak period is from May to September.

Detailed itinerary

Day 1Arrival

If you have booked airport transfers the Kandoo team will meet you at Cuzco airport and transfer you to your pre-trek hotel. Otherwise, you can make your own way there. Later you will attend a pre-trek briefing with your Lead Guide to prepare you for the challenge ahead.

Day 2Acclimatisation day in the Sacred Valley

The air is almost as thin in Cuzco as it will be at the highest points of your trek, so it is a good chance to acclimatise when you can still get a comfortable night's sleep. We will spend the morning in the Sacred Valley, visiting the town of Chinchero and the Salt Mines of Maras. We will then continue by vehicle to our hotel in Ollantaytambo where you will have the afternoon free to rest or explore.

Day 3Drive from Ollantaytambo to Cuncani, trek to Quishuarani

We leave Ollantaytambo after breakfast by private vehicle and travel to Calca where we will stop for a short break to visit the farmer’s market. We will then continue driving, crossing the Willkapunku Pass at over 4400m, before descending to Cuncani. Here we will meet our arrieros (horsemen) and start our trek.

We begin by trekking for around 2 hrs before stopping for lunch, and then continue trekking to cross the Huillquijasa Pass at 4445m. After another 2 hours we will reach a small valley where we will see traditional Andean farmhouses and herds of alpaca and llama. The views are spectacular, with three beautiful lagoons in the valley and the sacred valley mountains of Veronica and Ccolque Cruz. We will arrive at our campsite next to Quishuarani.

  • Elevation: From 2800 metres to 3800 metres
  • Trekking distance: 12 kilometres
  • Trek time: 6 to 7 hours
  • Highest point: 4445 metres (Huillquijasa Pass)
Day 4From Quishuarani to Cancha Cancha

An early start will give us the best views as we begin our gradual ascent of the Abra Pachacutec, or Condor Pass. At 4700m, this is the highest point of our trek. From the top we are rewarded with views of the snow-capped peaks of Pitusiray (5750m) and Chicon (5500m). Our trek continues along a narrow, barren ridge before we begin our descent to our campsite near Cancha Cancha village.

  • Elevation: From 3800 metres to 4000 metres
  • Trekking distance: 14 kilometres
  • Trek time: 7 to 8 hours
  • Highest point: 4700 metres (Pachacutec Pass)
Day 5From Cancha Cancha to Huaran, drive to Ollantaytambo, train to Aguas Calientes

Our last day of real trekking will also be one of the easiest. Our trail follows a small river flanked by steep mountains, passing through Queuñas trees and pretty farmland. When we reach Huaran village we will stop for lunch.

From there we will be taken to Ollantaytambo by bus, and by train to Aguas Calientes for a night at the hotel.

  • Elevation: From 4000 metres to 2050 metres
  • Trekking distance: 9 kilometres
  • Trek time: 3 to 4 hours
Day 6Tour of the ruins at Machu Picchu

After a hearty breakfast it is on to the bus for the ride up to Machu Picchu itself. The guided tour lasts for around 2½ to 3 hours. We can arrange a climb to the top of Huayna Picchu, the iconic mountain behind Machu Picchu, but permits must be purchased in advance.

Afterwards, we'll take you to  Aguas Calientes by bus, back to Ollantaytambo by train, and then to your hotel in Cuzco by private transfer

Day 7Departure

After a shower and a good night's sleep, it will be time to leave. We will collect you from your hotel and transfer you to Cuzco Airport for your departing flight.

Availability and prices

Last Updated December 13 2019
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Arrival: February 8 2020
Days: 7
Price: £899 $1169 €0
Comment: Saves £50 was £949
Arrival: March 29 2020
Days: 7
Price: £949 $1234 €0
Comment: Minimum 2 people
Arrival: April 17 2020
Days: 7
Price: £899 $1169 €0
Comment: Save £50 was £949
Arrival: May 20 2020
Days: 7
Price: £949 $1234 €0
Comment: Minimum 2 people
Arrival: June 24 2020
Days: 7
Price: £949 $1234 €0
Comment: Minimum 2 people
Arrival: July 22 2020
Days: 7
Price: £949 $1234 €0
Comment: Minimum 2 people
Arrival: August 12 2020
Days: 7
Price: £949 $1234 €0
Comment: Minimum 2 people
Arrival: September 24 2020
Days: 7
Price: £949 $1234 €0
Comment: Minimum 2 people
Arrival: October 11 2020
Days: 7
Price: £949 $1234 €0
Comment: Minimum 2 people
Arrival: December 2 2020
Days: 7
Price: £949 $1234 €0
Comment: Minimum 2 people
Speak with an expert Start planning your next adventure by contacting one of our team.
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Rachael Bode

Adventure Travel Consultant

Phone: + 44 1283 499982

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Sharon King

Adventure Travel Consultant

Phone: +44 1283 499981

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Victoria Hoddy

Adventure Travel Consultant

Phone: +44 (0)1283 205478

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