Avid hikers, this one's for you! Follow the Camino del Apu Ausangate through the Cordillera Vilcanota mountain range, accompanied by llamas and horses loaded up with gear. Overnight in traditional tambo lodges. Enjoy authentic Peruvian cuisine every night. And relax to the sounds of traditional music as you rest after a day of mountain trekking.

Highlights

  • Overnight in traditional tambo lodges each night
  • Travel the Camino del Apu Ausangate
  • Indulge in traditional Peruvian meals every day
  • Hike through stunning scenery and past sacred mountains

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Cusco - Chillca Chillca
Day 2 Chillca - Machuracay Machuracay
Day 3 Machuracay - Anantapata Anantapata
Day 4 Anantapata - Huampococha Huampococha
Day 5 Huampococha - Cusco  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Cusco - Chillca

Chillca Tambo Lodge

Welcome to the Cordillera Vilcanota mountain range! On your first day, wave farewell to charming, cobblestoned Cusco and make your way southeast by car along the Vilcanota River. Along the way, you'll find the impressive Temple of Checacupe — the perfect spot to stop for photos. Continue to the upper valley of Pitumarca, then the hamlet of Japura, where you'll start the day's trek to the musical, charming town of Chillca.

Arrive at Chillca Tambo to the sounds of local music and the taste of traditional coca tea, which is said to help with altitude sickness. Here you'll find some of the highest potato fields in the world, as well as a sweeping view of the Phinaya Glacial Valley where thousands of llamas and Alpacas from the community graze. In the distance, impressive, snow-capped Mount Jatun Jampa stands tall and strong.

Hiking distance: 2 miles

Day 2: Chillca - Machuracay

Llamas and alpacas grazing in the valley

Lace up those hiking boots and load up your llamas for your second day of trekking! Hike into the Phinaya Glacial Valley — home to thousands of llamas and alpacas — as you make your way toward the Santa Catalina Glaciers. Climb alongside the Pjachaj Waterfalls. Pause for a traditional lunch just above the falls. And then continue trekking on paths surrounded by moraine walls, glaciers, and lagoons in a land that witnessed the beginnings of ancient cultural settlement in the Andes.

Your final destination of the day is Machuraccay Tambo — a traditional lodge that happens to also be one of the highest lodges in the world. Drift to sleep at the foot of Mount Ausangate, the Incas’ most sacred mountain and the highest peak in the mountain range.

Hiking distance: 6 miles

Day 3: Machuracay - Anantapata

Enjoy panoramic views as you trek across the mountain pass

Start the day by tackling your first mountain pass, where spectacular panoramic views await. (Don't forget your camera!) Then make your way down through red sandstone formations, heavily eroded by ice. Keep an eye out for vicuñas and condors — they're sometimes spotted here! Your final destination of the day is Anantapata Tambo, where a spectacular sunset view over Ausangate Mountain is your reward at the end of a long day of trekking. 

Hiking distance: 6 miles

Day 4: Anantapata - Huampococha

Rainbow Mountain

On your fourth day in the mountains, wind your way through the brilliantly colorful sedimentary soils of Vinicunca Mountain — also known as Rainbow Mountain. Hundreds of Andean geese nest on the nearby cliffs of Anta and the massive Glacier del Inca is on the way, so keep your camera handy. Pass the flat formations of Apu Labrayani and make your way down to Huampococha Tambo lodge — where a local weaving demonstration awaits!

Hiking distance: 6.5 miles

Day 5: Huampococha - Cusco

A local man plays the conch shell

On your final day of trekking, hike uphill for sweeping mountain views, cross twisted limestone formations that date back to the Cretaceous Period, and cross a final mountain pass. It's all downhill from here as you make your way to the trail's end at Congomire and board a bus bound for Cusco

Hiking distance: 5 miles

Map

Map of Ausangate Lodge-to-Lodge Hiking in the Andes - 5 Days
Map of Ausangate Lodge-to-Lodge Hiking in the Andes - 5 Days