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Benefits of the 5-day Inca Trail to Machu Picchu

Why do we offer a longer Inca Trail?



Latin America Specialist
Published on

04 Jan 2024

Updated on

09 Jan 2024

Inca Trail

Embarking on the iconic Inca Trail to the mystical city of Machu Picchu is a once-in-a-lifetime adventure, and at Far & Wild, we believe in providing an unparalleled experience that goes beyond the ordinary. Working closely with our partners in Cusco, here are some compelling reasons why we recommend taking the five-day Inca Trail trek, a carefully crafted journey developed to offer our clients the best possible experience.

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Machu Picchu

Avoiding the Crowds:

Most trekking operators offer a 4-day option however by opting for the 5-day route, we can strategically plan our itinerary to reduce overlap with the other trekkers. This allows our clients to immerse themselves in the beauty of the trail and breathtaking surroundings without the crowds, creating a more intimate and authentic experience.

Enhanced Acclimatisation:

The Inca Trail involves various altitudes, and the highest point of the trek at Dead Woman’s Pass (Warmi Wañusqa) is a staggering 4215m. We cross this pass on day 3, instead of day 2 on the regular version hence allowing your body an extra day to adapt. This reduces the risk of altitude-related issues and enhances your overall well-being and enjoyment during the trek.

Trekking at high altitudes can be challenging for some so aside from the extra time on the trail, we also recommend at least 2 nights (ideally 3) in the city of Cusco prior to the trek.

Cusco plaza rooftops
Explore the beautiful city of Cusco
Cusco market
Delve into the vibrant local markets

Exploration, Nature and Discovery:

Our 5-day itinerary allows for more time to explore hidden gems along the trail. We can take detours to lesser-known archaeological sites such as Wayna Q’ente and Llaqtapata, share local stories, and provide a deeper understanding of the rich history and culture surrounding the Inca civilization.

Trekking in the Andes is not just about reaching the destination; it's about appreciating the journey. Our trek allows for a more leisurely pace, enabling you to connect with the natural surroundings, observe wildlife, and savour the breathtaking landscapes without feeling rushed. Soak in the panoramic views and connect with the awe-inspiring beauty of the Andes.

Cultural Interaction:

Spending an extra day on the trail provides opportunities for meaningful interactions with local communities along the way. On day 2 when trekking through the narrow Cusicacha Valley, we pass houses inhabited by farmers and herdsmen finally reaching the small Andean community of Huayllabamba.

Engaging with the people who call these mountains home adds a cultural dimension to your journey, creating lasting memories and fostering a deeper connection to the region.

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Learn about lesser-known archaeological sites
Enjoy the journey

Personalised Experience:

With an extra day, our experienced guides can offer a more personalised and unhurried experience. Delve deeper into the history of the trail and create lasting memories at your own pace.

Spending extra time at the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Machu Picchu opens the door to a more profound and immersive experience. You can explore the site at a leisurely pace, delving into its rich history, architectural marvels, and cultural significance. For those seeking more adventure, this extra day allows for optional hikes, such as ascending Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain, providing different perspectives of the ancient city. The lush natural surroundings come to life, offering a chance to appreciate the diverse flora and fauna that contribute to Machu Picchu's unique ambiance.

Camping in Remote Locations:

Our carefully chosen campsites are off the beaten path, providing a sense of tranquility and serenity. Camping in more remote locations which are not frequented by other trekking companies are quieter, more private and cleaner.

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Fully serviced camping
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Camping with a view

A taster of our campsites

Day 1 – Chamana

A private campsite and part of the small Llaqtapata Community. In the Quechua language Chamana translates to "resting place," a name that encapsulates the essence of this unique spot.

While embracing the rustic charm of camping, Chamana doesn't compromise on comfort. Trekkers enjoy a thoughtfully arranged campsite that complements the natural beauty of the surroundings.

Day 2 – Llulluchapampa

A breathtaking expanse along the Inca Trail, unfolds as a picturesque haven for trekkers. This captivating site offers a panoramic view of the snow-capped Huayanai peak. Here, the air is crisp, and the scent of the Queñua forest adds an extra layer of enchantment to the overall trekking experience. Llulluchapampa serves as a gateway to the higher reaches of the trail, the perfect overnight respite before the next day's uphill challenge.

Day 3 – Phuyupatamarca

Aptly named "the village above the clouds," stands as a gem along the Inca Trail, with the promise of one of the most beautiful sunrises on the route.

As dawn breaks, the sun graces Phuyupatamarca with its golden rays, casting a warm glow upon the landscape. The village above the clouds becomes a front-row seat to a breathtaking spectacle, as the sun bathes the surrounding snow-capped peaks, including the majestic Salkantay and Pumasillo.

Day 4 – Hotel in Aguas Calientes

After camping on the Inca Trail, spending a night in a hotel can be a welcome option allowing for a good night's rest, access to hot showers, and the chance to unwind in a more leisurely setting. Relax and refresh before the final visit to Machu Picchu the following day.

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Machu Picchu
Ma Pi tree
Machu Picchu from other angles


At Far & Wild alongside our local partners, we aim to positively impact the livelihoods of the communities involved in our trekking operations and to help them fairly profit from visitors that pass through their towns. Apart from tourism, local communities make a living from agriculture, so we try to buy most of their produce and use them for meals on our treks and support the local economy by paying them a fair price.

We also teach the importance of being sustainable not only while they work with us, but in their day-to-day activities, like how to compost their waste, recycle, and use clean energy like solar panels.

Ready to book your Peru trekking adventure?

To find out more about booking a Peru Holiday give our experts a call on 01768 603715. Our Latin America experts have spent plenty of time in Peru, living and working, so they know exactly how to help you.

  • Amanda


    Latin America Specialist

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