The 2-Day Epic Andean Experience
Are you looking to escape the crowds and enjoy a couple of days in the Andes on a unique trek? Look no further than the Huchuy Qosqo & Patabamba route. This is a fantastic two-day trek in the surroundings of Cusco traveling from Tambomachay, located just 20 minutes from Cusco, to Huchuy Qosqo, an ancient Inca archaeological site that sits on a cliff with stunning views over the Sacred Valley of the Incas.
Along the way, you’ll be amazed by the beautiful views of the mountainous landscapes and intrigued by the small communities that live in these rural regions. You’ll finish your two-day effort with a visit to the remote Huchuy Qosqo archaeological site. One of the most outstanding characteristics of this archaeological complex is the use of lithic material combined with adobe and clay defying time, weather, and even earthquakes.
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Short on time in Cusco but want to enjoy an authentic Andean experience hike? Whether you want to join us as part of a group or just you and a partner, our Huchuy Qosqo & Patabamba Trek can accommodate you. It’s the perfect mix of Andean culture and incredible views as you hike through rural mountainous regions off-the-beaten-path and away from other tourists. This is a route that isn’t overly traveled but offers you unique experiences along the way.
What can you expect? The trail crosses mountain passes and Andean communities, offering a view of a large array of local flora and fauna. You also get to spend time with the families in these small villages and get to learn more about their way of life. It’s an excellent opportunity to immerse yourself in this colorful culture.
On the second day, you’ll explore the unique and rarely-visited archaeological park Huchuy Qosqo. This is a great chance to visit one of the more remote sites in the Cusco region, see incredible Inca architecture, and learn more about their history.
What’s more, we take care of absolutely every part of your trip, so all you need to do is enjoy yourself. You don’t need to worry about food, transportation, or a guide. Does this sound like something you’d really enjoy? Check out the adventure-packed itinerary.
Itinerary at a Glance
Cusco | Tambomachay - Qoriqocha Lake - Patabamba Community
Start hiking from Tambomachay and get to Qoricocha Lake for lunch. This afternoon, walk to Patabamba community to spend time with the locals and learn their traditions.
Patabamba Community | Huchuy Qosqo - Lamay - Cusco
Hike to the Pukamarca pass and Puma Punku canyon before joining the original Inca Trail. Tour the Huchuy Qosqo site before hiking down to Lamay. There, our transport will take you back to Cusco.
What's it like
- Enjoy some truly stunning views of the beautiful Andes and the Sacred Valley of the Incas.
- Hike over diverse terrain, from high altitude plains to fertile agricultural corn and potato fields.
- Escape the city and crowds for two days and lose yourself in the best that nature has to offer.
- Immerse yourself in small Andean communities and learn more about their way of life.
- Explore the unique Inca site of Huchuy Qosqo that can only be reached by foot.
Why Travel with us
Cusco | Tambomachay - Qoriqocha Lake - Patabamba Community
Highlight of the day: Spending time with local Andean families and understanding their traditions.
Soak Up the Stunning Andean Wildlife and Beautiful Scenery
Your two-day adventure starts today as we head to Tambomachay, just above the city of Cusco. You’ll begin walking and reach the Sicllacasa pass, from where you get outstanding views. We’ll cross from one side of the valley to the next to get to our lunch spot at the Qoricocha Lake, which provides some more incredible landscapes. You’ll see unique Andean flora and fauna in this area.
This afternoon, we’ll keep hiking to the small community of Patabamba. We’ll receive a warm welcome and spend time with the families there. This is a wonderful opportunity to learn all about the traditional Andean way of life and share special moments with these families. You’ll spend the night in our camp in this village.
We will pick you up from your hotel in Cusco at 7:30 am. We will then drive to Tambomachay (3,800 m / 12,467 ft), an archaeological complex situated in the Sacsayhuaman Archaeological Park. The day's hike will start at this point and will continue through puna landscapes and over the Sicllacasa pass at 4,100 m / 13,451 ft, where we will have spectacular views of two valleys. You will see the Incas’ capital, Cusco, with stunning mountains surrounding it to your right.
We will follow the valley's side from the pass, making our way toward the top to cross over to the other side. It's about a 45-minute walk to the top end of the valley. Once we get there, we will cross a small stream that divides the valley and makes our way to our lunch spot at Qoricocha Lake (Golden Lake). The lake's scenery is quite barren because the whole area is a high puna between the mountains and is covered with tough, Andean grass called Ichu. It may be possible to see various birdlife, such as Andean geese, lapwings, and partridges, among others. Then it is about a two hours walk to the village of Patabamba, our camping place where we will be greeted by groups of locals who are always happy to welcome us into their community! After we have settled in and had a steaming cup of coca tea, we will visit one of the local families to learn about their lives. If you have brought any gifts with you, you can share them with the family. After visiting the family, we will have time to relax, and your tour guide will teach you more about the Andean way of life.
Patabamba Community | Huchuy Qosqo - Lamay - Cusco
Highlight of the day: Exploring the remote and unique Huchuy Qosqo archaeological complex.
Explore the Unique and Remote Site of Huchuy Qosqo
Our day begins by hiking up to the Pukamarca pass to get amazing views of the Urubamba River and Sacred Valley of the Incas. We’ll then continue to the Puma Punku canyon and join a part of the original Inca Trail. This fascinating stone path leads us to Huchuy Qosqo archaeological site. You’ll enjoy a tour with your guide and learn all about the site’s history before we pick a spot for lunch.
This afternoon, we’ll hike the last leg of our trek to the small village of Lamay in the Sacred Valley. From there, our private transport will be waiting to take you back to your accommodation in Cusco.
This morning, we’ll head out on the trail after a nourishing breakfast and be on our way to Sihuas village and then continue to the Pukamarca pass (4,150 m / 13,615 ft), which overlooks the town with the same name. From here, you’ll get an amazing view over the Urubamba mountain range and the impressive Sacred Valley of the Incas.
Next, we’ll keep hiking until we reach the Puma Punku canyon (“the puma gate”). At this point, we’ll hike along a part of the original Inca Trail, which has been restored as part of the Qhapac Ñan project. This path will take us to the isolated and truly unique Inca archaeological site of Huchuy Qosqo, which means “Little Cusco” in Quechua. It sits above the Sacred Valley of the Incas (3,600 m /11,811 ft) and is a really fascinating place to visit.
Once you’re inside the site, you’ll enjoy a guided tour and your knowledgeable guide will show you all the significant Inca buildings in Huchuy Qosqo like sacred temples, storehouses, Inca terraces for agriculture, and the Inca reservoir used to store water during the dry season. Afterward, we’ll choose a comfortable spot to enjoy our lunch.
After your guided tour of the site and tasty lunch box, we’ll begin our 2-hour walk back down to the village of Lamay ( 2,941 m / 9,649 ft) by the Urubamba River in the Sacred Valley. From there, our private transport will be waiting to take you back to your accommodation in Cusco for a well-deserved rest.
At Salkantay Trekking, we specify the included and non-included services under all the tour itineraries listed on our website. We take care of all the logistics, but please pay attention to the details, so you don’t miss anything. Some items may be different for specific programs, so please read carefully before booking with us.
What Is Included?
High Quality Service & Safety
You’ll meet your trekking guide and group in our office for an orientation before your trek. There, we’ll provide you with the duffle bags, which our team will carry. The meeting will be at 5:00 pm the evening before the trip begins.
Experienced Tour Guide
English and spanish speaking, professionally educated, and official tour guide. Your guide will explain the culture and surroundings along the entire route, including leading your group in ancient ceremonies! He or she will keep you safe, sound, and comfortable on your trek so that you can enjoy your time worry-free!
One Duffle Bag
On the trek, you can carry your personal belongings up to a maximum weight of 7 kg / 15.4 lb (this weight includes your sleeping bag).
Medical Kit or First AID Kit
All Salkantay Trekking guides have received specialized training in first aid. We hold mandatory training sessions with our guides every February. Your guide will always carry a first aid kit to face basic emergencies (altitude sickness, travelers' diarrhea, cuts, scrapes, etc.) as well as oxygen. If necessary, we’ll evacuate you from the path as quickly as possible and ensure that you arrive at a clinic for treatment.
Extras Included in our Service
We believe that attention to small details is what sets us apart from other local companies. You’ll receive a cover to protect your backpack on the road and a rain poncho.
Customer Service 24/7
We have telephone service available 24 hours/day for ease of communication with Salkantay Trekking leading up to your trek.
Lodge in Patabamba
The first night of this trek is spent in a lodge in the community of Patabamba.
1 Breakfast, 2 Lunches, and 1 Dinner
Our chef prepares the best dishes in the middle of the mountain. Our passengers love our food! We respect all diets (vegetarian, vegan, or special menus are available at no extra cost), so let us know if you have any particular allergies or restrictions on your reservation form and remind your guide during the briefing. You’ll enjoy breakfast, lunch, and dinner, in addition to hot drinks and snacks.
Water on the trail
We’ll provide you boiled, filtered, and cooled water during your hike, from your first lunch to your last breakfast. For this, you need to bring a camel bag or an empty bottle (we recommend a capacity of 2 liters).
Wake up tea
Every morning at the campsite, you'll be woken up with a cup of hot coca tea. Our staff will bring the tea to your tent so that you will be warmed from inside out before you start your day.
Tea Time or Happy Hour
The first afternoon before dinner, the cooks will provide you popcorn, biscuits/cookies, coffee, hot chocolate, teas, hot water, etc. After a long day of hiking, you won't have to wait until dinner to relax, warm-up, and enjoy a bite to eat!
Snacks on the first day
Local fruits, cookies, chocolate, caramels, water, etc.
One cloth snack bag per person
To avoid the usage of plastic bags that contaminate our environment, we'll give you a cloth bag for your snacks.
Products for hygiene
You’ll be provided with a small towel and soap before each meal to clean your hands.
- Day 1: You'll be picked up from your hotel in the morning and will travel by private transportation to Tambomachay Archaeological complex, the trek’s starting point.
- Day 2: Private transport from Lamay village in the Sacred Valley to your hotel in Cusco.
Personal Belongings Transportation
On days 1 and 2, cargo mules will carry all the camping equipment and your baggage allowance (7 kg / 15.4 lb). Muleteers will be responsible for your duffle bag and personal items.
Permits & Entrance Tickets
Entry Ticket to Huchuy Qosqo Archaeological Site
What Is Not Included?
Walking Sticks (with rubber tips) can be very useful on rough terrain and for ascending and descending. You can rent a set from our company if you’d like.
US$ 10.00 per person
Not Included Meals
- Day 1: Breakfast
- Day 2: Dinner
Personal Hiking Clothing and Gear
Tips for our staff
Tipping is the norm on any excursion to Machu Picchu. Although we pay good salaries to our entire team, something extra is always welcome, especially considering the hard work they do. Typically, group participants collect their tips to hand out to the horsemen and chefs together.
Additional costs or delays beyond our control
Landslides, bad weather conditions, itinerary modifications due to a safety concern, illness, pandemia, government policy changes, political instability, strikes, act of God, etc.
We want to make your trip to Peru as memorable and as easy as possible. In this section, you'll find speedy answers to all those questions you had about hiking in Peru with Salkantay Trekking in one place. Please read the following information carefully – it will help you with any questions about our services. Please read carefully the following information – it will help you with any questions you may have about our services.
Have another question that we haven’t answered here? Drop us a line and we will get back to you asap!
How many days do I need to acclimate in Cusco before the Trek?
It is very important to be well acclimated to the altitude before exerting yourself on a trek. We do recommend that you arrive in Cusco at least 2 or 3 days before the trek starts to help you become acclimatized and avoid possible problems with altitude sickness while on the trek.
Suppose you have already been in another area of Peru at a high altitude before arriving in Cusco. In that case, we still recommend you have a whole day in Cusco to rest, recover from your travel, and enjoy the sights and sounds of Cusco before departing for the trek.
Here some suggestions for activities to do in the Cusco vicinity before starting your adventure trek:
Briefing or Informative Meeting
All information meetings and briefings are held in our main office in Cusco (or your hotel) at 5:00 pm, one night before the tour begins. These meetings last approximately 30 to 45 minutes. If you’re unable to attend, you must coordinate another time by email, by phone or at the Salkantay Trekking office.
Trek Balance Payment (in Cusco)
The trek has to be paid for in full at most 7.30 pm one day before your departure (generally after the briefing).
It would be much appreciated if you pay the trek balance in cash US dollars or local currency at our office in Cusco. You can withdraw some money from several ATMs along Avenida Sol (either in US dollars or local Peruvian Soles). You can pay by credit card or PAYPAL online, but you will have to pay an 8% service charge, charged by VISA and PAYPAL. We do not accept bank checks or payment of the balance by traveler’s checks.
Duffel Bag or Canvas Case
You’ll receive a canvas case or duffel bag during your briefing. Our horses will carry them, and the horsemen will hand them to you when you get to each camp. They measure 60 x 24 x 22 cm (23.6 x 9.45 x 8.66 in).
A maximum of 7 kg / 15.4 lb is allowed for each duffel bag, including the weight of your sleeping bag, sleeping mat, clothes, and other personal items.
Can I store my luggage at your office?
Of course! During the trip, your main luggage can be stored at our office (you can organize it with us on the briefing day or by email) or at your hotel, both free of charge.
Any equipment that you won’t need on the trek can be stored safely in your hotel. Nearly every hotel will provide this service. Don’t leave items of value with your bags; put them in the hotel safe and obtain an itemized receipt (in the unlikely case of theft, many insurance companies require that you have a copy of the receipt itemizing everything). It’s best to put items such as credit cards inside a sealed, signed envelope for extra peace of mind.
Pick up of guests
Salkantay Trekking can pick you up from your hotel, as long as it’s in the Historical Center of Cusco. Your guide will coordinate the pickup time in the briefing session, but please keep in mind that the time may vary between 30 and 45 minutes due to traffic.
Cusco is an old city, meaning it has many narrow cobbled streets. Some hotels and Airbnbs may be located on streets without access to cars or on long, steep slopes, making it difficult to transport luggage. We strongly recommend that you book accommodation with good access.
Group tours are made up of different types of people, then physical conditions and ages can vary. By agreeing to be part of a group tour, you also accept that some people may be faster or slower than you. Therefore, each person can go at their own pace on the route. It may be the case that a group wishes to modify the tour; however, the guide will be the one who decides, after consulting with all the participants, if such modifications are possible.
Strikes and demonstrations
Strikes and demonstrations are usually common in Peru, and this may interrupt some of our tours. Roads can be blocked, and train tracks can be taken over. However, we will try to keep your trip as originally planned, even if it means leaving the night before the scheduled date. Under these circumstances, tours may also be canceled. In case of changes or cancellations, everything will be coordinated with you by our operations department. Your safety is our highest priority, and our decisions will be made to protect it.
Please pay attention to where you leave your things and remember to take everything once you leave our transport, tents, or restaurants. You’re the only one responsible for your objects during the tour.
The "Huchuy Qosqo Trek by Patabamba in 2 Days" can leave any day of the week, from March through January. We do not run this trek in February because rainy season & maintenance.
2021 Land Cost
Group Price: US$ 200.00 per person
Required Pre-payment: US$ 100.00 per person
Balance (Cusco): US$ 100.00 (Commonly paid in Cusco after the briefing).
This small-group journey is guaranteed to operate with just two guests.
Notice that PayPal charges a fee of 8%, which we ask the client to cover since it's due to the use of its service. This tax is just for online deposits so that you will pay the remaining in cash (the briefing day in Cusco) without charges.
Please, after your deposit, send us the transfer number to firstname.lastname@example.org; only after that, we'll be able to confirm your deposit and reservation.
Extensions & Offers
There are several extensions you can include to your Peru Adventure.
- Rainbow Mountain: US$ 100.00 US$ 80.00
- Sacred Valley: US$ 60.00 US$ 50.00
- City Tour: US$ 30.00 US$ 20.00
There are additional items you can include in this trip.
- Walking poles (pair): US$ 10.00
Once your booking has been confirmed, we guarantee the price won’t increase, whatever the circumstances. So please, before booking, ensure you’ve read all our important tour information.
Thank you for your interest in having an adventure travel experience in Peru curated by Salkantay Trekking. Please take a moment to complete our short form, so one our friendly Adventure Consultants could provide you all the information for your trip of a lifetime in Peru.
Our Pledge | Your privacy is respected and protected. The Salkantay Trekking Company will never share, sell, or make public any of your personal contact information to third parties.
Remember | One of our Travel Experts will contact you soon to confirm the availability of the trip you chose, give you more information, and/or provide you alternative options. Once availability is established, we will ask for a deposit and a completed online registration to confirm your spot on the trek. Please call us at (+51) 958 191 179 with any questions or to confirm availability over the phone.
Note | Due to the rainy season and trail maintenance, we don't offer this trek during the whole month of february. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause you, we are working to provide you a better service!