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inca trail one day hike

One day Inca Trail to Machu Picchu

The Inca trail one day hike to Machu Picchu is designed for travelers who have less time and they want to hike the famous short Inca Trail and visit Machu Picchu Citadel all in one day.

This shorter version of the Inca Trail still allows you to visit the most beautiful Incan sites along the way to Machu Picchu arriving at the Sun Gate for your first view of the Lost City of the Incas Machu Picchu.

It is very important for potential trekkers for the Inca Trail one day hike to understand that you will do the same trail as the 2 Day Inca Trail, just quicker. Trekkers got to be in moderate to excellent physical condition to be able to do that trek and reach Machu Picchu ruins on time.  If you think this trek may be too strenuous, you may book the two day Inca Trail which arrives to Machu Picchu in one day but at a slower pace later in the day.

The Inca Trail one day hike to Machu Picchu is generally believed to be one of the beautiful hikes the sacred valley has to offer
Total Distance 12 km (7,800 miles)
Estimated Walking Time 5 hours
Maximum Altitude Point 2,700 m (8,858 ft)
Weather warm/hot
inca trail one day hike

Itinerary 2 days Inca Trail

You will be picked up from your hotel at 4 a.m. Following, we will go to the train station and leave on the 6:10 am. train, from Ollantaytambo. The train follows the Urubamba River, until we reach Km 104, where we’ll begin our trek. Along the way, you will see spectacular views of the farmlands, snow-capped mountains and the mighty Urubamba River, one of the sources of the Amazon River. At km 104, we will begin our trek. Once you have everything you need take a group photo, before visiting our first Inca site. After orientation and tour of the Incan ruins, we are going to begin hiking upwards, as we head for the Classic Incan trail. If the weather is clear, we’ll have tremendous views of Machu Picchu, the Urubamba River and other surrounding Inca Sites.

After hiking for 3-hours, we are going to reach the foremost lovely Inca site on the Inca trail, Wiñay Wayna (Forever Young) at 2,600 m/8,500 ft. Most people do not get the opportunity to see an elaborate water fountain, temples and some agricultural terraces, which provide a perfect opportunity to learn about the history of the Incas. The scene of this site drops off a cliff, with stunning mountains surrounding the area. From Wiñay Huayna, we’ll walk to the Sun Gate, wherever we’ll see the picturesque landscape of Machu Picchu. After taking in the once-in-a-lifetime views, we will begin our descent to Machu Picchu.

A big advantage of this hike, is that by the time we reach Machu Picchu, most of the day travelers will have returned home, so you will have the area to yourself. After taking photos, you will have a two hour guided tour by your private English speaking guide. After that, you will have time to explore Machu Picchu by yourself.  When you are done exploring, you can either take a bus, or walk, down to Aguas Calientes for Dinner (not included). Following, you will take the 6:30 pm train back to Ollantaytambo, and then a bus to Cusco, where you will be brought back to your hotel. You will arrive around 10 pm.

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