Why Choose the Two Day Short Inca Trail to Machu Picchu?
The 2 Day Short Inca Trail takes you on the last third of the Classic Inca Trail through the Sun Gate to the majestic Machu Picchu Citadel! It offers impressive Inca ruins, expansive mountain views, lush subtropical vegetation and extraordinary ecological varieties. As you hike on the flat stone steps walked by the ancient Incas, 600 years ago, you pass through cloud forests and finally into subtropical vegetation at Mach Picchu. At your arrival to the “Guardians Gate” of Machu Picchu you´ll get to take the picture-perfect postcard photos of Machu Picchu Citadel. These memories will last forever.
On your 2nd day begins your guided tour of the majestic Machu Picchu Citadel where you can enjoy the tour fully relaxed from yesterday’s adventure. Take in the grandeur of the ancient site and explore the nooks and grannies it has to offer. Your guide will share some of the fascinating stories and history of this site and the thriving culture of the Incas at the time.
The 2 Day Inca Trail trek was designed for those who do not have the time or ability to hike the Classic Inca Trail but wish to experience a part of the historic Inca Trail on a trek directly to Machu Picchu, one of the 7 Wonders of the World.
THE 2 DAY INCA TRAIL ITINERARY
DAY 1: Cusco – 104 Km – Wiñayhuayna -Sun Gate-Machu Picchu
The Adventure of a Lifetime Begins.
Our driver picks you up at the crack of dawn (around 4am). You´ll have a short drive through the beautiful Sacred Valley of the Incas, with its valleys and mountain peaks on the way to Ollantaytambo to catch the Expedition Train at 6:10am. Enjoy the views or take this opportunity to catch a short nap. If you are staying in Ollantaytambo, your driver will pick you up at around 5:20am. Be sure to let the office know. From there it is only a short drive to the train station.
You arrive at the train station as the sky begins to brighten and the peace of the morning breaks open and sooths our souls for the adventure ahead. The train ride in itself is magical. On your left, the Urubamba River curves gently, acting as a road to the mountains; on your right you are flanked by rugged mountains. You can´t help but gaze up at the rugged and rough-hewn mountains with a sense of awe. The ruggedness of the mountains transforms to lush trees, with dazzling splashes of color. The aroma of the forest fresh and organic.
The Expedition Train takes you to KM104 (elevation 2,100m/6,927ft) the checkpoint and starting point of your trek. Be ready to meet likeminded people once you cross the bridge over the Urubamba River. Once at the checkpoint take the opportunity to use the restrooms, apply insect repellent and sunscreen, pack your gourmet box lunch, and purchase extra snacks if needed.
The first Archeological site you get to see is just a minute outside the checkpoint. Learn the history and thriving culture of the Incas from a 100% authentic and knowledgeable Peruvian guide. The trek passes by flora and fauna unique to the Inca trail, with its vivid and radiant colors. The Urubamba River guides your path to your left and a brooch of snow draped, heaven-kissing mountains to your right. You pass a small waterfall with its waters cascading into the rocks. Splash your face with the glistening, clear waters of the small serenity pool below. Take pictures of the vegetation nodding gently.
Next we take the moderate climb up to the chiseled remnants and remote archaeological site of Wiñay Wayna, (2,650m/8747 ft). The views from this point are absolutely spectacular. You should be thrilled with your achievement so far. Lunch is only a few minutes away. Once you reach Wiñay Wayna, stop and take a breather. Enjoy the camaraderie with the other trekkers. Your scrumptious box lunch is a quinoa salad complete with beef, chicken or vegetarian options.
The rest of the trek is pretty gradual. Climb up the monkey steps, using your hands like a real monkey. Once you reach the top of Sun Gate Elevation (2,730mts/9,007ft) prepare to be blown away in awe and wonder. The size and majesty of Machu Picchu at the bottom will simply take your breath away. Take loads of pictures, there is no better view in the world. As you make your way down to Machu Picchu Citadel be sure to ask your guide as many questions as possible. At the “Guardians Gate”, you will be able to take the famous picture-perfect postcard photos that we all see. Take your time to enjoy this magical experience before you take the bus down to Aguas Calientes to check into your hotel.
Be sure to take some time to browse the many local flea markets in town, enjoy the walkability of the coble stone streets and have a delicious dinner at the many local restaurants with your trekking group. This is another great opportunity to get to know more cultures or share pictures/stories of your adventurous day.
- Meals: Box Lunch & Dinner (Included)
- Accommodation: Ferre Hotel Machu Picchu
DAY 2: Aguas Calientes- Machu Picchu – Cusco
On day 2, you will be able to enjoy exploring Machu Picchu and experience her magical presence by taking the first bus at 5:30AM to the Machu Picchu archeological site. If you hurry you will be able to see the glorious sunrise over Machu Picchu. You’ll have plenty of time during day 2 to see every inch of this new 7th Wonder of the World and UNESCO World Cultural Heritage site. It is an unforgettable experience.
Your guide will expertly direct you through the energetic ruins and its diverse main streets for about a 2 hour tour. Be mesmerized by the sheer brilliance, genius and precision of Incan Engineering, to have constructed a site with such great structural integrity, with very little tools and in such unforgiving terrain. Their mastering of the Ashlar technique is to be marveled. Immerse yourself in its rich historical-cultural legacy and their long and layered history.
After your tour, those who have booked in advance for the extra hike up Huayna Picchu will have time to enjoy those views on their own. When you have had your fill of the exceptional views of Machu Picchu, you will take the bus back down to Aguas Calientes for lunch (not included). Depending on your train departure time, you may also have time for some shopping, sightseeing or a visit to the museum or hot springs.
The Expedition train will take you back to Ollantaytambo at 2:55pm or 3:20pm, following the spectacular Urubamba River. Close to Aguas Calientes, the canyon is narrow and the river has many beautiful sections of whitewater. You can also see Wiñay Wayna from the train, if you look up high on the steep canyon wall! Back at Ollantaytambo, your driver will meet you at the exit from the train station to take you back to your hotel in Cusco in our private vehicle. You can expect to arrive at your hotel around 7:00pm.
Meal: Breakfast (Included)
PLEASE NOTE :
Huayna Picchu mountain ($75) is available with the 2 day Inca Trail hike but needs to be booked in advance and will depend on availability.
The new updated regulations for Machu Picchu require you to purchase an additional circuit ticket if you want to see all of Machu Picchu Citadel. Circuit 3 is included in your trek and of course the upper guards gates area. Please review new circuits for more information.
2 Inca Trail to Machu Picchu Map
Packing Checklist for the 2 day Inca Trail to Machu Picchu
The 2 day Inca Trail hike does not include a porter to carry your belongings, so you will need to pack as light as possible to make sure you are able to carry your bag for the whole journey.
- Original passport (this has to match the passport used for the booking)
- Good daypack (the smaller, the better)
- Reusable water bottle (in an effort to reduce plastic waste, disposable bottles are not allowed)
- Comfortable hiking boots with ankle support
- Toilet paper
- Windbreaker or warm jacket
- Layers – so you are able to remove a layer or two if you become too hot during the hike.
- Hand sanitizer
- Wet wipes
- Personal medication
- Sun hat or woolen hat (depending on the season) and sunscreen
- Rain gear (if it´s rainy season)
- Snacks like chocolate bars, cereal bars or any dry fruits
- Insect Repellent
- Plastic rain poncho
- Extra money for souvenirs and tips
May through November is dry season. That does not mean that it never rains in the dry season but it is mostly dry with an occasional light shower.
The rainy season begins usually in December and last until April. In the rainy season, there can be frequent heavy tropical showers.
On the Inca Trail, weather conditions vary depending on whether its dry season or wet season . The route for the 1 day Inca Trail, the altitude is 1,000 meters or 3,000 feet lower than Cusco. Therefore, it tends to be a bit warmer during the day and at night.
It is more tropical and more humid than Cusco. There is always a chance of rain showers, especially in the cloud forest areas. In the rainy season, these showers will last longer and may become intense tropical rain showers. The Inca Trail is made of stones laid on the ground, so it can be more slippery to walk on in the rainy season.