With the permits for Inca Trail tours flying off the shelf, those travelers determined to trek are now seeking alternative hiking options. Over the last few years, we have been developing alternative trails that showcase different aspects of the Andes, rarely seen on the traditional Inca Trail. Local Villages, majestic peaks and zero crowds, these are all elements that are enticing to any true adventure trekker.
Peru is filled with thousands of miles of trails built by the Inca. Following in the footsteps of history, you can be led through deserted valleys, over barren ridges and past alpaca herders, with the reward of reaching Machu Picchu at the end of each adventure. No Inca Trail Permits? No Problem. Check out these trails for your own Peru Trekking expedition:
Short Inca Trail & Lares Weavers Way Trek
This itinerary includes visits to charming rural villages, ancient ruins, and beautiful alpine lakes, as you make your way through the Lares Valley. The trail ends in the Sacred Valley, where you catch a short train ride to embark on the last, and best section of the Inca Trail. Venturing off the beaten path, combined with the unique experience of hiking into the ruins of Machu Picchu, makes this an ideal alternative trail.
Cusco, Inca Quarry Trek + Short Inca Trail to Machu Picchu
Looking to explore on the road less traveled? This itinerary offers the perfect appreciation for Peru's classic highlights while revealing the hidden treasures and natural beauty, far from the crowds. During this cultural trek, you can observe an astonishing variety of scenery and ecological zones, snow-capped peaks and archaeological remains. Connect with the Short Inca Trail at the end of your voyage, to embrace the experience of hiking into Machu Picchu.
Seven Day Trek to Choquequirao
Perched precariously on a remote hilltop and tucked between huge canyons and fierce rivers, lies the lost Inca city of Choqeuquirao. This adventurous trek leads you in the footsteps of Hiram Bingham and connects the three fascinating Inca sites he discovered over 100 years ago. Supported by mules, you follow old Inca trails to traverse the entire Vilcabamba mountain range from the Apurimac to Urubamba River, connecting the stunning sites of Choquequirao, Llactapata and of course, Machu Picchu. From arid canyons and striking mountain passes to the warm moist air of the jungle, this 40-mile journey is one of the most spectacular and diverse treks in the whole of the Americas.
Salkantay Lodge to Lodge Trek to Machu Picchu
Don't like camping? This unique trek incorporates the pristine landscapes, incredible mountains and rare access to the backside of Machu Picchu, all while offering the luxury of spending your evenings in spectacular remote lodges built along the trail. Enjoy the best of both worlds for this truly remarkable experience.
Apu's Trail Andean Lodge to Lodge Trek
Venture along the road less traveled, with a breathtaking five day trek in the Vilcanota's Cordillera. This route is known as the “Camino del Apu Ausangate”, located in close proximity of the highest Sacred Mountain in the Department of Cusco. The “Apu” is the Bearer of Life and Guardian of one of the most pristine mountain ecosystems in the world. Accompanied by lamas and horses that will carry your gear, you will trek along the spectacular landscapes owned by the proud shepherds of the community of Chillca. Each daily hike will lead you to the next unique “Tambos” or Andean Lodge, for a special cultural treat. Your meals will be prepared by experienced chefs who will excite your palate with a great variety of delicious Peruvian dishes and produce. Enjoy a little evening entertainment at the "tambos", dancing along to authentic, vernacular music played by local inhabitants.
If you are thinking of hiking in Peru and need help deciding the best route, let us know! We can assist in formulating the ideal itinerary, which includes the trek that best suits you, in combination with all pre and post trek arrangements. Click the Start Planning button below to speak with one of our Inca Trail Tours Specialists.