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Lares Trek and Short Inca Trail to Machu Picchu 5 Days

The Lares trek and Short Inca Trail to Machu Picchu is perfect for the traveler who wants the best of the wild Andes Mountains and the most magical Inca archeological sites – this way you have the best of both worlds in 5 days!

You pass through the most isolated indigenous communities keeping the Inca culture alive, living with no road routes to the outside world, like their ancestors before them. Our own unique route is incredibly picturesque, with majestic glaciers, shockingly blue glacial lakes, waterfalls, llamas, and alpacas. The Inca Trail portion is on the original Inca trail just like in ancient times, explore the ancient Inca religious cities along the way and enter Machu Picchu through the Sun Gate, where most of the famous photos of these ancient ruins are taken. You get to visit Machu Picchu twice!

General information

Max. Altitude:

3870 M.S.N.M

Group Size:

8 person(s)




Van, Bus, Train


5 days - 4 nights



Price from: 697USD Book Now Enquire Now
  • Trips Managed by Local Experts
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Day 1: Cusco – Huaran – Cancha Cancha

Culturally adventurous hike through the Lares Valley to Machu Picchu begins with your pick up at 6:00am from your Cusco hotel. Make a quick stop at the Calca local market for any extra supplies. Drive for 1 hour to Huaran, where we meet the horsemen with their horses. Stop on the river bank to enjoy a delicious breakfast to give energy for the hike ahead.

When we start our ascent, be prepared for a steep hike, pace yourself, taking in the scenery with the calming river, gently flowing down stream to your left. When walking on your right will be lush mountains and gorgeous flora indigenous to the region.  The rest of the trail will be gradual. Pass old Inca bridges, a beautiful clear lake and find a perfect spot to stretch your legs and take a rest. Meet up with our chef for a divine 3-course lunch. After lunch travel to the village of Cancha Cancha via a enjoyable scenic hike.

The village is easy to find, the mountains creep closer and the air becomes crisper. Cross over a small stream and settle into our campsite by the river. Once we arrive in Cancha Cancha we get to interact with the locals, we can either play soccer with the local kids or visit a local school. After afternoon tea, spend the rest of the afternoon taking in our surroundings. Spend some time taking pictures of the local women herding their llamas and alpacas in traditional clothing or if you prefer take some shots of the breathtaking mountain peaks that tower above you.

As the sun disappears behind the mountains and the stars start to brighten the skies, we cozy up inside the dinner tent for another outstanding meal by our amazing chef. The rest of the evening getting to know the rest of the group and listening to the guide explaining how the Incas used the constellations to guide their farming. Settle into the tents to get ready for a challenges that the second day of hiking will bring.

  • Meals: Breakfast – Lunch – Afternoon Tea – Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping facilities with comfortable 4 person tents for every 2 people
  • Time: 6hrs approximately
  • Difficulty: Moderate

Day 2: Cancha Cancha – Kishuarani

Leave Cancha Cancha and walk uphill through the valley, passing stone houses, scenic mountainous ranges and high Anden landscapes. After 2 hours, the path flattens where we arrive to the highest pass the Pachacutec Pass (4,758m / 15,610ft). After we have conquered the first summit, relax and enjoy the views of Pachacutec Lake and the snow-capped mountain peak of Pitusiray. Head downhill for the next 2 hours to have a well-deserved lunch before continuing for another 1.5 hours into the valley where we see a few glacial lakes, herds of alpacas, llamas and sheep. Our camp is at (3,870 m / 12,694ft) close to Kishuarani village.

  • Meals: Breakfast – Lunch – Afternoon Tea – Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping facilities with comfortable tents, foam mattress, blankets, pillows
  • Distance: 14kms/10.3 miles
  • Time: 8hrs approximately
  • Difficulty: Challenge

Day 3: Quishuarani – Cuncani – Lares – Ollantaytambo 

Today we take on the second mountain pass, Hillkiccasa Pass (4,200m / 13,779ft). The views as we hike of Colquecruz and Pitusiray which are awe inspiring and something you will not soon forget.

Continue on our trek through the grasslands, productive agricultural sites and pristine lakes for 5 hours will will reach Cuncani, small isolated community. Head down the a lush valley with extensive agricultural areas, fruit trees, varied flora, and native flowers like begonias and wild orchids. Later, reach our destination, the Lares Village (3,100m / 10,170ft) where we can soak in the natural volcanic hot springs for an hour or so, have lunch and rest. 

After lunch in Lares, transfer to Ollantaytambo, where we spend the night in a comfortable hotel within walking distance to the town, shopping and train station.

  • Meals: Breakfast – Lunch – Afternoon Tea – Dinner
  • Accommodation: Tunipa Lodge or Similar
  • Distance: 15kms / 9.3 miles
  • Time: Approximately 6 hours
  • Difficulty: Moderate


We will pick you up from your hotel at 5:45am for a short walk to the train station, to catch the 6:10am train for a 1-hour & 15 minutes to KM104, starting point of the Short Inca Trail. Cross the Urubamba River on a picturesque foot bridge, we show our passports at the checkpoint, pack our picnic lunch before proceeding. First stop is an archeoligical site just a few steps from the checkpoint, we spend some time exploring site and learning what this site was used for. 

Here we start our 3-hour trek to Wiñay Wayna archaeological site (2,650/8,747ft) also known as Forever Young in Quechua.  The first hour and a half is a gentle hike. Stop at several outlooks where you have an expansive view of the Urubamba River. Pass through several microclimates, including a cloud forest. View a beautiful waterfall with crystal clear waters, take a short break before the steep climb that awaits you to the age-less site of Wiñay Wayna.

When we reach Wiñay Wayna (Quechua for Forever Young), explore the site that has remained well preserved for many centuries and was discovered after Machu Picchu. Climbing to each section, our guide will give us a quick explanation of their use. At Winay Wayna, tuck into our gourmet box lunch and enjoy the dazzling views of this amazing site. Here we intersect with the Classic Inca Trail.

Later continue on a gradual hike towards the Sun Gate (2,730m/9,00ft). Eencounter one final challenge before our first magnificent view of the Citadel, these steps are named the gringo killer steps or monkey steps. We suggest, that you get on all fours and just get it done. The steep stairs are carved directly into the bedrock of the Trail.  Once you walk through the Sun gate, Machu Picchu Citadel stands infront and its sheer size will take your breath away.  Take as much time here are you want, enjoy the view and take photos. Now, it is just an hour hike down the flat rock stairs to Machu Picchu.

Once you reach Machu Picchu, have time to take photos from the viewing platforms above the site (Guard House), where you can take the famous postcard pictures of Machu Picchu. Arrive in the afternoon, as the archeological area starts to empty of tourists, which gives you the opportunity to take beautiful photos in the afternoon light. Take your time to take in this magical experience before you take the bus down to Aguas Calientes to check into your hotel. Have a delicious dinner, then have time to walk around this picturesque little town, visit the hot springs or just go to your hotel to rest after such an exciting day.

  • Meals: Breakfast in the Hotel – Picnic Lunch – Dinner
  • Accommodation: Wiracocha Inn Hotel or Intipunku Tambo
  • Difficulty: Moderate

Day 5: Aguas Calientes – Machu Picchu – Cusco

After an early breakfast, get an early bus at 5:30am up to Machu Picchu, in time to witness the sunrise. It is a truly mystical sight, not something you’ll want to miss! After enjoying the sunrise your guide will provide a tour of Machu Picchu, which takes around two hours. See many of the most important parts of Machu Picchu Citadel during your tour. 

When you have had your fill of the incredible views of Machu Picchu, take the bus back down to Aguas Calientes. Upon arriving at Aguas Calientes lunch is waiting in one of the restaurants. (lunch not included). Depending on your train departure time, there may be some time for shopping, or sightseeing.

The Expedition train will take you back to Ollantaytambo at 2:55pm or 3:20pm, following the spectacular Urubamba River. Enjoy the scenery from your window. Back in Ollantaytambo, the driver will meet you at the exit from the train station to take you back to your hotel in Cusco in our private van. You can expect to arrive at your hotel about 7:00pm.

  • Meals: Breakfast
  • Difficulty: Easy


  •  On the Inca Trail, we will be doing the circuit #3 and there is no way to do another circuit unless you buy an additional entrance to Machu Picchu.
  • You can upgrade to the Vistadome Train for the same times, 2:55pm or 3:20pm, 4:22pm, or 4:43pm. The cost is $67 USD.
  • Early trains can be organized by requested and it has to be done by booking time.
  • The Huayna Picchu Mountain Hike depends on availability and let us know about it at booking time.

Enjoy Lares Trek and Short Inca Trail !


  • Transfer from the airport to your hotel in Cusco
  • First breakfast
  • Private transportation from the hotel to the Huaran trailhead
  • Professional guide fluent in English, Spanish and Quechua
  • Round trip train ticket from Ollantaytambo to Aguas Calientes
  • 3 Bus tickets between Machu Picchu and Aguas Calientes.
  • Entrance ticket to Machu Picchu
  • Entrance tickets to the Inca Trail
  • 2 nights in Hotels with private bathroom, hot shower, wifi, storage and buffet breakfast included
  • 4 person tents for every to people for space and comfort
  • Foam mattress and camping pillow
  • Delicious meals during the 5 days as indicated in the itinerary
  • Horsemen and pack horses to carry all camping, cooking and personal equipment (7kg / 15 lbs. of your personal items such as extra clothes and sleeping bag will be carried on the Lares Trek portion)
  • First-aid kit including emergency oxygen tank
  • Boiled water to fill your drinking bottles
  • Guided tour in Machu Picchu
  • Chef, cooking equipment and kitchen tent
  • Transfer back to Cusco


  • Sleeping Bag: $20 USD per person per trek (It will be clean and warm)
  • Air Mattress: $20 USD per person per trek (Therm-a-rest mattresses)
  • Walking Poles: $15 USD per pair per trek (Professional Poles that can be extended)
  • Personal tent: $30 USD – (Please request when you book your trek)
  • Vistadome Train Upgrade: $67 USD per person (For the return to Cusco (Poroy) at 4:43pm)
  • Huayna Picchu Mountain: $75 USD per person (Please request when you book your trek)
  • Lunch on the last day in Aguas Calientes
  • Optional upgrades for hotel
  • Tips for the crew, guide and cook of ORANGE NATION

2 to 8 people$ 697 USD per person

***This price includes the extra pack horse which will carry your belongings up to 7 kg / 15lbs. We will provide you a duffel bag to put your belongings in.
***ORANGE NATION provides large Eureka 4 person tents for each 2 trekkers.
***Private price is $100 USD extra per person


  • 18 to 25 years old: $30 USD. Information required on student card: name of university, student name, photo of student, expiration date etc. A copy of the card at booking is required & government approval for discount.
  • Under 18 years old: $30 USD. Please send us a copy of your passport at the time of booking.
  • Under 11 years old: $40 USD.  Please send us a copy of your passport at the time of booking.
  • Group of 5 people or more: $30 USD. All you need to do is book the trek together at the same time.

*** The short Inca trail to Machu Picchu is available year round except it is closed in February for maintenance — This trek takes you into Machu Picchu by walking through the SUN GATE like in the ancient times, you will explore some amazing Inca ruins along the way like Wiñay Wayna.


  • Sleeping Bag: $20 USD per person per trek (It will be clean and warm)
  • Air Mattress : $20 USD per person per trek (Therm-a-rest mattresses)
  • Walking Poles : $15 USD per pair per trek (Professional Poles that can be extended)
  • Personal Tent: $30 USD – (Tent is for solo trekkers only)
  • Additional Night in Aguas Calientes – From $60 USD (depending on availability)
  • Vistadome Train Upgrade: $67 USD per person (For the return to Poroy at 4:43pm )
  • Huayna Picchu Mountain: $75 USD per person (Please request when you book your trek)
  • Hotel single supplement: $35 USD for 2* Hotels for solo travelers.


Orange Nation provides foam mattresses for every hiker, camping pillow, transfer airport to hotel (only in Cusco), duffel bags, plastic liner bags, and extra blanket for the tent are included in the trek price!

  • EXTRA PACK HORSE is included in the price, which will carry your things up to 7 kgs / 14lbs. including sleeping bag, mattress, clothes etc. (Lares Trek portion only)
  • COLD BOILED WATER will be provided along the trek, there will be hot and cold water at each meal time.
  • OXYGEN TANK will be available.
  • EMERGENCY HORSE is included which can be ridden if you feel tired or sick. (Lares Trek portion only)
  • BEST ITINERARY operated by Lares Trek specialist only.


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Please read the following information to help answer any questions you may have about our services and the Lares Trek and Short Inca Trail.


We will pick you up from the Cusco airport and take you to your hotel in Cusco. Please let us know your flight details at least 14 days before arrival. Our representative will be holding an orange sign reading ORANGE Nation outside the arrivals. You must exit the terminal to find our representative as they cannot enter. (Please let us know if your hotel is in the Sacred Valley so we can make the necessary arrangments). 


The Briefing will be the night before the trek at 6pm in our office which is located at Garcilaso Street 210 , Office Nº:213 (2nd Floor) in the la CASA DEL ABUELO shopping center.


ABSOLUTELY! During the Lares Trek and Short Inca Trail to Machu Picchu your main luggage can be stored at our office or at your hotel, both are free.


FIRST, to book your Lares Trek and Short Inca Trail, we need you to fill out our booking form by clicking on BOOK NOW on our homepage or click here – BOOK NOW.

We will need the following information (FROM EACH PARTICIPANT in your group). This information is necessary to purchase the entrance tickets to Machu Picchu the train tickets:

  • Personal information (your full name, exactly as it appears on your passport):
  • Gender
  • Passport number
  • D.O.B. (dd / mm / yyyy)
  • Nationality

SECOND, we require a deposit of $211.00 USD per personin order to purchase your entrance to Machu Picchu and train ticket. You can make you deposit by clicking on the PAYPAL symbols on the top of our home page, or you can click on the PAYPAL symbols on our booking page.


You can pay in cash at our office (US dollars or Peruvian soles) here in Cusco to avoid the additional 5.5% charged by the Credit Card companies and PayPal. We have many ATMS within the historical center to withdraw money. You can also pay by PAYPAL online but you will have to pay a 5.5% service charge, charged PAYPAL.  To pay your balance through PAYPAL, you need to log into your PAYPAL account using our email address to complete the payment. 


Unfortunately No. Once we buy the tickets for the Inca Trail, the government does not allow any changes, so we cannot change any departure date after purchase. Tickets are also non transferable nor refundable. If you cancel your Lares Trek and Short Inca Trail, the deposit is non-refundable!


DEFINITELY! You MUST bring your original passport with the SAME passport number you sent us to book your entrance to Machu Picchu, train ticket, other entrances and reservations. They will check when you enter Machu Picchu and to board the train.

In case you are renewing your passport or changing your name, please send us a COPY of your old passport to secure your permit, and we can change it when we receive a COPY of your new passport for a fee of $25 USD per person. We must have a copy of your old and new passport to make the change. Before you change your passport keep a copy of your old one.

If you do not wish to pay this fee you will need to bring both passports to Peru with you. You can enter Peru with your new passport but you will need to show both passports, old and new to enter Machu Picchu or the train. If you do not have both the releventpersonal will not allow you entry into Machu Picchu or the train.

Remember to check your current passport to make sure it doesn’t expire within 6 months of your arrival to Peru!!! The Government of Peru is enforcing the existing law that requires all foreign travelers to have a passport valid for a minimum of six months past the time of entry into Peru. Peruvian authorities will deny entry into Peru for travelers not meeting this requirement.


The weather is very unpredictable and always changing in the Andes Mountains, so it is difficult to say with any certainty. We recommend that you be prepared for warm weather, possible rain showers (Orange Nation provides rain ponchos) and a warm jacket in case of cold. We also recommend that you dress in layers so you may take off or put on clothes as needed.

The climate in Cusco has temperatures between 10º – 20º C, with warm days and cold nights. The best time to hike the Inca trail is between the months of April through October, when the weather is warm. During the months of June, July and August nights are very cold which is why Orange Nation rents good quality 4 season sleeping bags.

The rainy season is during the months of November through March, if you want to hike the Inca Trail during this season, bring warm clothes and be prepared for rain but there will be a beautiful landscape and colorful flowers.

The Average weather conditions on the Inca Trail:

  • Dry Season: April – October
  • Day temperature: 20ºC – 25ºC – Night temperature -1ºC – 7ºC
  • Wet Season: November – March
  • Day temperature: 17ºC – 22ºC – Night temperature 4ºC – 7ºC


For some visitors, the first hours in Cusco can be summarized as: shortness of breath, a discomfort in the body, dizziness, headaches, stomachaches, even vomiting. As great connoisseurs of natural medicine, the Incas used coca leaves to counteract soroche, quechua for high-altitude sickness.

Don’t do anything other than rest

If you travel from Lima to Cusco, the effect can be immediate. This lack of oxygen, scientifically known as hypoxia, begins to manifest itself at 7,874 ft (2,399 m) above sea level. That’s why right after landing in Cusco, visitors can feel fatigued and have difficulty walking. It is advisable to take it really easy on the first day and, if possible, rest the first few hours to help the body acclimatize to the altitude.

Stay hydrated

How do people feel after a night of drinking? Thirsty. That’s how you’ll feel when you arrive in Cusco. As already stated, the body dehydrates quickly in high altitudes. We recommend that you drink lots of water before and during your trip to Cusco. Also, avoid heavy meals since your stomach takes longer to digest food at high altitudes. A diet of low proteins and high carbs is advisable.

Discovering coca

No one knew better the effects of high altitude than indigenous peoples. Coca is the best natural medicine to combat altitude sickness. The locals consider coca leaves sacred because of their curative powers and they still use it in the same way now as it was in the time of the Incas. It contains iron, vitamins A, B1, B2 and calcium, among other nutrients. Coca makes it easier for your bloodstream to absorb oxygen, suppresses hunger, combats fatigue, headaches and can ease your stomach. Try drinking coca tea, which is found in the lobbies of most hotels in Cusco.


The evening before your trek, you will be given a SMALL DUFFEL BAG to pack your clothes for the next four days. Your weight allowance is up to 7kg / 15lbs. including sleeping bag, so 5kg / 11lbs. Your team of pack horses will carry your duffel bag for you, together with the food and camping gear. It’s important to be aware that you will not have access to your items in the duffel bag until the end of each day, as the pack horses will always be ahead of the group. During the trek, you need a day backpack big enough to carry your personal belongings such as a warm jacket, a rain jacket, camera, sunscreen, snacks, water, etc.  A 30 to 50L backpack is sufficient.


The Lares Trek and Short Inca Trail is fairly difficult and you should be prepared and healthy prior to starting. You have to be relatively fit and exercise regularly.
In preparation: try walking 15kms in a day or go to the fitness club in the months leading up to the trek. It is also important to be well acclimatised to the altitude. Try to spend at least 2 days in Cusco (3,350m / 11,047ft) prior to starting the trek.


If you’re happy with the services provided, a tip is appreciated. It means a lot to the staff, and their families, who will take care of you during the tour. It inspires better service and is a major part of the tourism industry across many ORANGE Nation destinations. Of course you are free to tip as much as you want, depending how you feel about the quality of service and the length of your tour.


We are a local sustainable & responsible tour operator which functions according to the ethical principles of tourism: protect the environment and benefit the indigenous communities respecting their culture and religion. We have trained all of our staff to know, understand and respect the local communities and the people living there.


  • Original Passport (it has to be the same as the one you have used for booking your trek)
  • Valid university card (if you booked as a student)
  • Good daypack
  • Drinking Water: 2-3L (Please bring reusable bottles, not disposable)
  • Comfortable hiking
  • Sleeping bag (can be rented from ORANGE NATION)
  • Headlamp
  • Toilet paper


As a Direct Local Tour operator we provide you with a duffel bag at your briefing and INCLUDE an extra porter who will carry up to 7 kgs or 15 lbs. including your 2.5kg sleeping bag, mattress and extra clothing.

  • Necessary clothes, layers for hiking
  • Bathing suit for the thermal waters
  • Warm clothes. It can get quite cold at night
  • Gloves (Preferably waterproof)
  • Small bottle of soap: we provide warm water each day to wash.
  • Large plastic bags will be provided at the office to line your duffel bag
  • Sleeping bag: It has to be at least -15ºC – This can be rented from ORANGE NATION


  • Hand sanitizer
  • Wet wipes
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Personal medications


We highly recommend a small backpack (30 to 40L) for hiking in the day. A big backpack will not be allowed into Machu Picchu. The remainder of your belongings will be in your duffle bag at camp.

  • Water: Please supply your own water until the first lunch spot, then we will provide you with cold boiled water  at every meal. Please bring your canteens or water bottles
  • Sun hat
  • Sunscreen
  • Insect repellent
  • Headlamp
  • Warm hat
  • Rain gear
  • Snacks like chocolate bars, cereal bars
  • Rain poncho
  • Gloves
  • Camera
  • Extra money for souvenirs, drinks & tips

Lares Trek and Short Inca Trail to Machu Picchu 5 Days

Please fill in our BOOKING FORM carefully with your correct personal details.

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Gideon G

Trip to Rainbow mountain. First to the mountain thanks to Yair’s expert driving and special thanks to Cristian for being my guide. Highly recommend!

D'Ivion P

Our group of 8 did the 3-day Inca trail tour. From the very beginning Ray demonstrated his knowledge by answering all our questions thoroughly. Trekking the Inca trail was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do in my life. I can say for certain that I would not have finished the trail, if not for Ray. I am not active at all, and hiking up and down a mountain, for 7 hours, seemed impossible. Within the first 10 minutes I was ready to be done. That sentiment was shared within most of my group.

Andria E

Our tour guide Ray was excellent and very helpful. And we did the short inks trail to machupicchu thanks for the experience

Elipicyz F

Ray was absolutely amazing 😎 would definitely recommend him to anyone that wants to travel to Machu Picchu !!! Best experience of my life and off my bucket list🙏🏾

Ze Mi

Vinimos desde Choquequirao para visitar Machu Picchu e incluso después de todos los momentos inolvidables del trekking con Jhony como nuestro guía Machu Picchu fue realmente memorable. Tener boletos para la entrada de las 6 a.m. fue fantástico, ya que nos permitió explorar con menos multitudes y presenciar la niebla que se elevaba sobre las ruinas.

vidya kannan

Éramos un grupo de tres que decidimos realizar un recorrido de un día por el Valle Sagrado de Orange Nations, contemplando Ollyantaytambo y terminando en Cusco. La mejor decisión que tomamos fue que fuimos recibidos por nuestro increíble guía Miguel justo a tiempo, quien nos llevó a este increíble día lleno de diversión, risas y con un gran conocimiento sobre el área.

Asiah Butler

Gracias Jhony y Grober por sus recorridos entusiastas y conocedores. Definitivamente ambos guías turísticos del siguiente nivel con una compañía del siguiente nivel. Hicimos la caminata Laures y Machupichu con Sam Travels / Orange Nation y lo recomendamos encarecidamente :)

Anna S

¡Los mejores guías turísticos del Perú para el sendero Machu Picchu! Nuestros guías turísticos Johny y David brindaron un servicio de la más alta calidad en mi experiencia viajando por Perú. Johnny enriqueció toda nuestra experiencia con humor, un conocimiento increíblemente detallado de la historia y cultura peruana, así como su entusiasmo y amabilidad. Durante los 2 días,

Jaden Curtis
recommends Orange Nation Peru

This was my first time in Peru and I wanted to do something bigger and better than Machu Picchu. I was searching online and came across Orange Nation's "Choquequirao Trek to Machu Picchu" , which is three times larger than Machu Picchu. Since Peru is known for a Machu Picchu

Ray Besos
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My girl and i did the Machu Pichu trek tour with Orange Nation. It was seriously the most amazing experience that we'll never forget. Gorgeous views! The long trek was worth the amazing view. The tour guide was friendly and very knowledgeable.

Juliet Julz
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Wow, what a wonderful trekking experience! My trip to Peru was amazing thanks to this awesome tour that i took with Orange Nation. I did multiple tours with this company. I'm a solo traveler and everyone in my group was always still friendly and did not make me feel left out.

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Excelente Anghely una nueva oportunidades de trabajo me siento feliz por estos logros

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