Choquequirao Explorer

The "Cradle of Gold" Refuge for the Son of the Sun, The Inca

Days: 6 - Nights: 5   |   Group Size: 4-15   |   Group Pricing Available 



Situated within the Salkantay Mountain Range, the ancient Inca city of Choquequirao rests high above the Apurimac River.  It bears a striking similarity in structure and architecture to Machu Picchu and is referred to as its "Sister City."

Choquequirao is five times the size of Machu Picchu and receives far fewer tourists but the ruin is no less impressive and is a good alternative to the overcrowded Machu Picchu and Inca Trail.  Unlike Machu Picchu, Choquequirao is not accessible by train or bus.

The only way to visit the site is by going on a spectacular trek from Cachora, a small community four hours from Cusco.

Trek Details 

Difficulty: Moderate to Challenging

Maximum Altitude: 3034 masl / 9954 ft

Minimum Altitude: 2894 masl / 9494 ft

Distance Travelled: 64 km / 40 miles



We pick you up from your hotel in private transportation and drive to the town of Cachora.  The 4-hour drive takes the Pan-American Highway through the Andes, with a spectacular views of the snow-capped mountains.  We continue in the direction of the Cunyac Bridge to cross the Apurimac River, which is the natural border between the Cusco and Apurimac regions.  In Cachora, we arrive at Los Tres Balcones Hostal to spend the night and prepare for the trek the next day.  Cachora is an authentic, colorful town to explore, with beautiful views of the mountain peak Padreyuc.

We enjoy a delicious breakfast at Los Tres Balcones Hostal.  After a short drive we arrive at Capuliyoc Lookout. There we will meet our crew of porters and have our final organize of our equipment and mules to begin our trek.  We take a trail heading north, following the Cachora Valley with a spectacular view of the Nevado Padreyoq.  We will also enjoy a spectacular view of the Apurimac River Canyon and the archaeological complex of Choquequirao in the distance.  Our path continues downhill until we arrive at Chiquisca.  Where we will lunch also have dinner and spend the first night of the trek.

After breakfast, we leave very early to beat the midday sun and continue downhill until we reach the Apurimac River, where we cross the bridge into the Cusco region.  We begin our trek uphill, arriving at Santa Rosa, where we can stop for a rest.  Here we find a local family's house where we can freshen up and enjoy sugar cane chicha, known as Cambray.  We can also buy bottled water, soft drinks, rehydration drinks, and snacks.  We continue uphill until arriving at Marampata.  We have lunch and enjoy the rest of the afternoon visiting the local family's land and sharing in their daily activities.  Later we have dinner and spend the night at the Marampata campsite.

Choquequirao! After breakfast, we start our trek to Choquequirao.  With our guided tour we will visit and explore the Usnu, Priests House, Llamayoq, Anan and Urin Sectors, and Administrative Sector.  We can appreciate the achievements of the Inca civilization and architectural design.  The excursion will take several hours.  You will have free time to discover the wonders of Choquequirao by yourselves.  Our lunch will be a packed lunch and upon our return we will have a snack before dinner to replenish our energy.  Later we have dinner and spend the night at the Choquequirao campsite.

Following breakfast, we pack up our equipment and begin our return to Marampata where we stop for lunched.  We then continue to Chiquisca, where we spent our first night.  We return by the same path that we took in the beginning of the journey.  The gradient of the path is Peruvian flat at the beginning, but than descends to the Apurimac River, where we will take a break and relax our legs.  The rest of the path is uphill arriving to Chiquisca. There we will have dinner and spend the night at the Chiquisca campsite.

We begin the day as early as possible to avoid the midday sun, which can become exhausting.  After breakfast the trek is all uphill.  The last part of the trek is challenging.  We arrive at the Capuliyoc Lookout, which is where we began our journey.  We take a moment to look back and reflect on all that we had accomplished. Returning to Cachora we have lunch and begin our private transport return back to the city of Cusco.


The itinerary is a general guideline to the activities that take place during your trip. Our local tour guides are knowledgeable and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable to make alterations. Any travel distances and times listed are approximations and are subject to variations due to local circumstances. A sense of Adventure and Understanding will be a helpful guide in the enjoyment of your trip.

Services Included 

  • Private transportation from Cusco - Cachora - Cusco
  • Los Tres Balcones Hostal (one night)
  • Entrance fee to Choquequirao
  • Guided service in English and Spanish
  • Professional chef, cooking and dinning equipment
  • Meals; breakfasts, lunches, and dinners
  • Vegetarian menu available at no extra cost
  • Four adult capacity all season weather tents, two person per tent
  • Porters and mules to help carry equipment
  • Emergency First-aid kit
  • Emergency oxygen bottle



Recommend You Bring

  • Travel documents
  • Sleeping bag rated for cold weather
  • Water-resistant trekking boots
  • Waterproof clothing (poncho)
  • Synthetic or cotton clothing (socks, trousers, shorts, t-shirts)
  • Warm clothing (thermal underwear, fleece, hat, gloves, socks)
  • Insect repellent
  • Walking stick(s)
  • Reusable water bottle
  • Sunscreen, sunhat, and sunglasses
  • Sandals, swimwear, and towel
  • Personal items
  • Basic over the counter medicines
  • Personal snacks
  • Flashlight, toilet paper
  • Hire extra horse or mule to ride and also to load personal equipment


$805 Per Person for 2 to 3 Persons   |   $735 Per Person for 4 to 6 Persons   |   $705 Per Person for 7 or more


Begin Your Journey or Have Any Questions