DAY01: CUSCO TO SANTA MARIA INKA JUNGLE
Adventurers will be picked up early morning and driven through the stunning Sacred Valley, cradle of the Inca civilization and dropped off at the 4,316m high Abra Malaga. Here bikers will change in to the kit provided by us (gloves and helmets) following a 20 minute briefing by our experienced tour guide. Then the fun commences…freewheeling down quiet but challenging roads, past changing landscapes and ice capped mountains, you will not want to catch your breath until the first pit stop in Alfamayo, some three hours from your starting point. Here you can enjoy your box lunch provided by us, while taking in the endless panoramas.
After a quick change and a dab of insect repellant, it is onwards and downwards towards Huamanmarca, site of a recently discovered archaeological Inca finding. Your tour guide will provide the historical background and the rest you can fill in for yourselves! Carry on descending to 1500 meters, while the jungle´s edge rears up and the small but charming town of Santa Maria looms on the horizon. Browse the Internet, buy provisions or just rest your legs and enjoy a cold beer before dinner- traditional Peruvian food, served hot. This night you can have a hot shower at a family run hostel and sleep in either single, double or three bed rooms.
DAY02 SANTA MARIA TO SANTA TERESA
Rise at 5.30am, shake off your weary limbs and enjoy the finest indigenous coffee prepared by your landlady for breakfast which is at 6am. Under dawn skies you will begin your walk, which gets progressively steeper, until arriving at the welcoming family restaurant in Santa Rosa, where you can relax in hammocks, admiring the coca plantations and take on refreshments while being entertained by the family monkey. After a short while you will reach the real Inca Trail, which winds around precipitous slopes and sheer drops for approximately half a mile. Be warned this is not for people who suffer from vertigo! The descent continues for just over two hours until you reach Qellomayo, a pueblito, where you will have lunch. Make sure you have saved enough energy for the final stretch, a riverside walk beside the Rio Vilcanota until reaching the delicious hot springs Colcamayo. Rejuvinate in the heavenly hot waters and forget your weary wake in these natural settings. Fully replenished, you will find the final stretch to Santa Teresa a sinch. Here you should sleep well in the family homestead after dinner.
DAY03 SANTA TERESA TO AGUAS CALIENTES
Wake at 7am, have breakfast before taking private transport to Lucmabamba town, the entrance to another Inca Trail, which was discovered just a few years ago. We are the only tour company to walk this part of the Inca Trail, so for three and a half hours you will feel like Adam and Eve walking amidst parrots in this tranquil Garden of Eden. You will be rewarded for your efforts with a view of Machu Picchu from the top of Llactapata, flanked by the grotesque peak of Salkantay. Your picnic here is unlikely to be forgotten for a while, gazing down on all those tourists who took the traditional Inca route because they did not know! It is only about a two hour walk down to the hydro-electric train station where the train departs for Aguas Calientes, the base town for Machu Picchu. Included is dinner at a local restaurant before retiring to your hostel with hot water and private bathrooms.
DAY04: MACHU PICCHU TO CUSCO
An early rise today, as you will take the first bus to Machu Picchu at 5.30am, reaching Machu Picchu at 6am, which with luck will coincide with a beautiful sunrise! Your guide will leave no stones unturned but feel free to challenge their knowledge of Inca history. Afterwards you have free time to dally with the llamas and show off your photographic skills. Those who still have the will can tackle Huaynapicchu, which actually looks down on Machu Picchu. A frequent bus service takes visitors back to Aguas Calientes, where you will catch the train to Cusco..