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Short on time, but would love to see Peru’s best-ofs? You know, Machu Picchu, the Rainbow Mountain, the Sacred Valley? And all of that in just, say…5 days? These are some of the most extraordinary places on Earth and we’ll get to experience all of them! First we’ll head to the Sacred Valley, an ancient Incan and archeological paradise. Once we soak it all in, we’ll be ready to climb the world-famous Machu Picchu, one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. As if that’s not enough, we’ll end our trip with a hike up to the absurdly beautiful slopes of Rainbow Mountain. Not bad for the trip of a lifetime, right?

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Adventure highlights

  • Three wonders in one trip

    Trains and buses will help us move along and maximize our time in the Peruvian Andes

  • Discover life in the Andes

    Stroll through the famous Pisaq Market, try out Peruvian cuisine, and explore Cusco, the capital of the Inca Empire

  • Marvel at Machu Picchu

    After years of looking at it through the screen, finally witness the Lost City of the Incas

Itinerary

Machu Picchu may be the thing that draws you in, but the Sacred Valley and the Rainbow Mountain are just as incredible. We’ll be able to explore all these marvels with a 5-day tour that’s combining train rides and some hiking. We will observe the scenery from a comfy seat as the train snakes its way through the cloud forest and high mountain passes, passing by multi-level terraces above the clouds. Our guides have covered all the logistical stuff—they’ll drop us off and pick us up wherever we need to be, they’ve arranged good quality hotels, and we’ll have a terrific guide by our side.

  • Your guides will pick you up from Cusco Airport and take you to the hotel. Later on in the day, you will explore downtown Cusco as a way to acclimatize to higher altitudes.

    Accommodation: Mamasara, a three-star hotel in Cusco

    Aerial view of Cusco during the night.
  • After a hearty breakfast, your guides will pick you up at around 7:30 am. First stop of the day—the Sacred Valley lookout point! You can count on terrific views and pics. After that you’ll visit the famous Pisaq Market, where people come down from the Andean villages to sell their textiles and vegetables. Continue the journey up to the Pisaq Inca Archeological site, located on top of Pisaq Mountain in the Sacred Valley.

    Drive to Urubamba and stop for lunch, then continue onto Ollantaytambo. This living Inca town features narrow walkways lines with water canals. Later in the afternoon, head to the train station and catch your train to Aguas Calientes. Once there, settle into your hotel.

    Meals: Breakfast
    Min/max elevation: 2,040 m (6,693 ft) / 2,430 m (7,972 ft)
    Accommodation: Coya Palace, a three-star hotel in Aguas Calientes

    Peruvian women selling souvenirs
  • Today’s the day! The absolute highlight of any trip to South America—the majestic Machu Picchu. You’ll have a guided tour that will help you discover and understand what Machu Picchu tells us about the life and customs of the Inca people. There’s also an option to take the challenging, unguided hike to the top of Huayna Picchu (extra cost as you need a ticket), where you’ll get the best view of the site. The hike is recommended for people who are fit enough to reach the viewpoint.

    After a long day of exploring the lost city, take the bus to Aguas Calientes and then the train back to Cusco. Upon arrival, you’ll be taken to a hotel for a good night’s rest.

    Meals: Breakfast
    Min/max elevation: 2,040 m (6,693 ft) / 2,430 m (7,972 ft)
    Accommodation: Mamasara, a three-star hotel in Cusco
    Walking time: 2 hours

    How to Hike the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu from a Sacred Valley Local
  • You’ll have an early start today—your guides will pick you up at around 3 am! The drive to the trailhead takes three hours, and your guides will make sure you have breakfast along the way.

    Once you’re at an altitude of 4,326 m (14,189 ft), it’s time to start the hike with constant views of the Ausangate Mountain. In about 2.5 hours, you’ll have reached your destination and you’ll enjoy the views of the Rainbow Mountains at 5,020 m (14,466 ft). After taking in the beauty of it all, hike downhill the way you came. Your guides will take you for lunch and then back to Cusco—expect to be there around 5 pm.

    Meals: Breakfast and lunch
    Min/max elevation: 4,795 m (15,371 ft) / 5,100 m (16,732 ft)
    Accommodation: Mamasara, a three-star hotel in Cusco
    Walking time: 4-4.5 hours

     

    Rainbow Mountain, Peru
  • After breakfast, your guides will drop you off at the Cusco Airport. If you’d like to stay longer and explore this wonder of a country, just ask your guides for some recommendations!

    Meals: Breakfast

    View of the central square in Cusco, Peru with a large baroque church from the Spanish colonial period.
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Meet your guide

CrossoverPeru
5.00
CrossoverPeru
CrossoverPeru offers small group adventure tours all around Peru and South America. They are the perfect choice for anyone looking for a unique adventure in Peru. Experience historical Incan trails, Machu Picchu, Rainbow Mountain, and many more without needing to hire a car or do any of the planning!
5.00 (4 reviews)
Barbara Platero (source: Google Reviews)

Amazing experience!!! Thank you CrossoverPeru for making this trip incredible. Our guide Juan Carlos was a super guide. Thank you for your patience and knowledge. We learned so much and made it easy for us to enjoy Peru. I highly recommend to everyone!!!!

Emma Fenning (source: Google Reviews)

When I was in Peru, Rolend was the lead tour guide and he was the absolute best! Along with him, Juan Carlos led us on some tours with our driver Jimmy, and both were also fantastic. Very knowledgeable, and energetic about the tours and activities. These three made my trip amazing. The absolute best!

Great Day at Machu Picchu with Juan Carlos
David P (source: TripAdvisor)
We had a great day right from the start, early pickup at our homestay with a nice clean car and a calm safe ride (not like rest of Peru drivers) to the train station in Ollantaytambo. Pleasant train ride with including snacks and a morning scenery with a sunrise over the mountains. Juan Carlos was waiting for us in Aguas Calientes and took us with the bus to Machu Picchu. He’s a very informative guide with lots of personal insight in the place and it’s surroundings. Later on we climbed Huayna Picchu for a great overview of the citadel. Honestly it was tough for us but JC helped us mentally to get to the top. JC offered many photo opportunities for us and is a great photographer as well and we got some perfect memories for life! We did not book an overnight stay which I can recommend for more time in Aguas Calientes and/or Ollantaytambo. Thank you Juan Carlos, Zenon the driver and Crossover Peru for making a dream of ours come true in the best possible way!
Great time at Machu Picchu
mikejgor (source: TripAdvisor)

Everything was perfect. From transfers to meeting Kevin at the train station to him getting us into MP!

The hike was perfect and he stayed with us the whole time despite us needing a few extra breaks!

Things to know

  • What you get on this adventure:

      • Professional English and Spanish speaking guide
      • 5-day Macchu Pichu, Sacred Valley, and Rainbow Mountain hike with a train
      • Hotel pick up and drop off
      • Accommodation during the tour
        • One night in a three-star hotel in Aguas Calientes
        • Three nights in a three-star hotel in Cusco
      • Walking tour in Cusco
      • Four breakfasts
      • Entrance to Pisac, Ollantaytambo, and Machu Picchu
      • Transportation during the tour
        • Inca Rail Voyager train ticket, Ollantaytambo — Aguas Calientes round trip
        • Round trip bus ticket Aguas Calientes — Machu Picchu
        • Transportation to/from your hotel in Cusco

    What’s not included:

      • Transportation to Peru
      • Meals and snacks during the Sacred Valley Tour and during the Machu Picchu Tour
      • Entrance ticked and guide to Huayna Picchu mountain — if interested, let us know in time to check availability ($80)
      • Guide gratuities — optional
      • Travel and medical insurance — optional
  • The best thing about this train & hike tour to Machu Picchu is that it’s suitable for everyone with a normal level of fitness. No prior experience is necessary. This tour is special because you’ll use trains to reach some places, making it significantly easier to reach Machu Picchu—not everyone is keen on hiking several days, and that’s okay! This tour is perfect for you then.

    Still, keep in mind that you’ll have to do some uphill hiking, up to 2.5 hours per day for three days in a row, gaining up to 500 m (1,640 ft) of elevation gain. Day 4 is perhaps the most difficult, while other days are easier.

    The city of Cusco is located at 3,400 m (11,150 ft) above sea level so you may feel slightly ill or dizzy due to altitude sickness. Your guides created this tour in a way that you have time to acclimatize to the Cusco altitude before going further up.

    A few tips on dos and don’ts for adapting to the altitude:

      • Do not eat heavy food the day before traveling to Cusco.
      • Make sure you drink between 6-8 glasses of water the days before your trip and during your stay in Cusco.
      • Once you arrive at your hotel, lie down a few minutes before going out to explore the city.
      • Once you are ready to go out and explore the city, try not to become agitated climbing stairs or walking fast. The best thing is to enjoy every corner of Cusco with calm and respect.
  • Here’s a list of the equipment you need to bring for hiking to Machu Picchu:

      • Day pack large enough to carry all the items listed (around a 25-40L bag)
      • Hiking poles — optional
      • Water storage for 2-3 liters
      • Quick-dry towel
      • Battery charger (there is no place to plug in while trekking!)
      • Toiletries (sunscreen, hand sanitizer, bug spray, toilet paper, etc.)
      • Sunglasses
      • Camera — optional (but recommended)

    Clothing and gear list:

      • Hiking boots (lightweight with good soles)
      • Shoes for camp
      • 2-3 dry-wicking t-shirts
      • 2-3 pairs of hiking pants
      • 4 sets of undergarments
      • 4 sets of hiking socks
      • Fleece jacket
      • Warm down jacket
      • Rain jacket and pants
      • Sun hat
      • Wool hat
      • Headlamp
      • Waterproof gloves
      • Waterproof jacket/rain poncho
      • High quality sunglasses
      • Trekking poles (can be rented for $30)
        Dress comfortably and for the weather in clothes you can move in. We suggest bringing clothing appropriate for the season. Layers are best and don’t wear jeans.
  • Group sizes and pricing

      • This Sacred Valley, Rainbow Mountain, and Machu Picchu tour can operate even with one traveller.
      • All pricing is per person. The cost does not decrease as the group grows.

    Machu Picchu hikes can be arranged for larger groups. Contact us to make arrangements.

    Min. age requirements

      • If you are older than 18, you’re good to go.
      • Minors younger than 18 may be permitted to join the hike on a case-by-case basis, but must be in the presence of a parent or legal guardian.

    If your group has hikers under the age of 18, contact us prior to booking to make arrangements.

  • To get to Cusco, most people fly into Cusco International Airport (CUZ). From there, you can take a shuttle service to your accommodation in Cusco.

    Once you and your guide agree on the details of your itinerary, your guide will suggest the best place to meet, usually at your accommodation in Cusco, and take you to the trailhead. At the end of your adventure, you will return to Cusco via train.

  • We highly recommend that you cover all your bases with both emergency medical and travel insurance. If you need assistance selecting the right insurance for your group, let us know and we will be happy to help!

    With medical insurance, if you have an accident or medical emergency on or off the mountain, you’ll avoid paying out of pocket for costly expenses. This covers everything from hospital treatments to emergency air transportation and more. Travel insurance covers canceled flights, natural disasters and other scenarios that may interrupt your travel plans.

    Generally, Peru is safe to visit. Like all countries, it has some bad neighborhoods, crime and political instability. However, there is no need to be concerned about political unrest.

    We had a chance to catch up with our local guide Roland Llave, co-founder of CrossoverPeru Tours, who shared a few thoughts on the current political climate in Peru: “At the core, these protests are a way for the people in South America to express themselves and fight for what they believe in. We recognize this might be unnerving for travelers, but this is part of our culture.”

    Roland let us know that the protests have stopped for now. Roads, airports, and lives are back to normal. As always, there is potential for more unrest because, as he mentioned, protesting is part of their culture and how they honor their beliefs and rights. If you have any concerns about traveling to Peru or South America, please reach out and we will help you navigate the best option for your travels.

  • A 30% deposit to secure your place is due upon booking. The remaining amount is paid 3 months (90 days) prior to departure. Once the trip is confirmed by the guide, the cancellation policy stated below applies.

      • If you cancel your trip 60 days or more before the start of your trip, you are entitled to an 80% refund
      • If you cancel your trip 30 days or more before the start of your trip, you are entitled to a 50% refund
      • If the cancellation has been made 15 days before the start of your trip, you are not entitled to any refund.
      • CrossoverPeru will need to be notified of any change or cancellation of your trip as soon as possible.
    Secure your spot for 2025 with a 10% deposit! This tour gets sold out very quickly, but with early-bird booking, you can rest assured you’ve booked your dream adventure in time.
    • Only 10% of the total amount should be paid as a deposit upon booking. This deposit is non-refundable, but can be transferred to another 57hours adventure anytime in case the dates don’t suit you.
    • Another 20% needs to be paid by the end of this year.
    • The remaining balance is due 3 months (90 days) prior to departure.
Have more questions? Read our FAQ, or Talk with us
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