How hard is the Inca Trail

The magnificent route of the Inca Trail is one of the best adventure alternatives you can choose to reach the enigmatic citadel of Machu Picchu. Because it is one of the best and recognized routes in Latin America to make the amazing walk along the emblematic ancient route of the Inca civilization.

How hard is the Inca Trail

This famous Inca Trail has two traditional versions of 4 days and the short version of this, which consists of 2 days, now we will explain the degree of difficulty for both routes, so you are prepared before starting your walk.


Traditional Inca Trail 4 days

  • DAY 1: The Traditional Inca Trail begins in the city of Cusco, from where they move by bus to km 82 or Piscacucho, from the point of control begin the adventurers to load the backpacks to start their adventure to Machupicchu at a height of 2650 masl, the ascent of the first day will be gradual and simple, they will climb only up to 3000 masl passing through Miskay (2800) and finally Huayllabamba (3000).

Degree of difficulty: easy

  • DAY 2: The second day will pass through narrow and steep trails (9 km) uphill to reach the top of the WarmihuaƱuska mountain, then begin to descend to Pacaymayo 3600 meters above sea level, the walking time will be 6 hours.

Degree of difficulty: difficult

  • DAY 3: This day the hike begins with a slight ascent to Pacaymayo, from where a walk through a more difficult stretch begins for 1 hour until you reach the archaeological complex Runkuracay 3,750 masl, then a descent to a lagoon called Yanacocha and another ascent to Phuyupatamarca and finally an excursion through flat ecosystems to WiƱayhuayna.

Degree of difficulty: difficult

  • DAY 4: The last day of adventure will be calm, with a slight ascent until inti punku and a descent towards the citadel of Machupicchu.

Degree of difficulty: moderate.

Also, we have to tell you that in the “Inca Trail to Machu Picchu”, there can be many difficulties, like none.

When rest of agencies speak to you, of how hard is the Inca Trail, you have this or that walk, do not hesitate to give it medium, moderate or high, referring to the technical difficulty of course. But in reality, the difficulty, of each walk is in each one.

First, “The Physical State“, if you are a person who does not have health (weight problems, you have no problems with the knees and ankles, etc). If you have a healthy diet, do not overdo it, with alcoholic beverages, do not smoke, get enough sleep and exercise regularly; then the degree of difficulty of any walk, may be more bearable, because you are a healthy person, “fit”, to make the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, in a more bearable and less saturated.

In second place, “The Preparation“, the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu is a challenge due to the nature of its terrain, changes of altitudinal floors, steep trails, steep descents, many steps, etc. If you are a person who has been preparing periodically, you do exercises, short walks, sometimes, even with your backpack on your back, and you have been reporting how hard is the Inca Trail?; have it for sure that you will know how to face, this challenge, called “Inca Trail Machu Picchu” and above all you will know how to enjoy it.

In third place; “The Inca Trail Machu Picchu is magical“, but ambitious, if you want to fully enjoy it, keep in mind:

The information: The experience of some not always, may be that of others, considers that by the characteristic of the land, summits, plains, jungle, steep trails, rivers, different climates, etc. They will inform us that the “Inca Trail Machu Picchu” has a technical difficulty of 3 or 4 degrees. But, how much have you been informed about the change of altitudinal floors? How much do you know about the weather? Have you reported on the rules? Do you know what equipment to bring? Food during the trek? How to prepare?, etc.

Remind that it is important, for any walk, to be well informed and thus avoid setbacks and bad experiences. It can be very difficult, the walk, if there has not been, for example, a good acclimatization or if we chose bad times to do “Inca Trail” or if we did not inform ourselves that we would arrive at a certain point at 4,200 m, etc. Knowing these things and other information, before doing the Inca Trail, will avoid many problems and you will enjoy your walk, in total safety.

Fourth, “The Attitude“; everyone has their own vision, of the places and everyone has their own experiences. For some people, “the walk will be much more difficult, than they were told”; and for others, it will be the opposite. Let’s be honest with ourselves, about our health, physical condition and precautions taken and above all having been able to choose the best time. Let’s go with the determined spirit to have fun, to attend to the instructions of your guide, to know that in several days of walking, there will be several experiences to tell. “Let us have the right equipment listen to the precautions that must be taken and be aware that” Inca Trail Machu Picchu “is a great challenge but it is not impossible.

Finally, remind that you must be very careful with your travel operator. Remember that “Cheap is expensive“, the travel operator you hire will not only advise you, but also provide assistance, camping equipment, tents, matras, food, water, medicines, guide, porters. , etc.