We will send you detailed information about the Adventure in a Pre-Departure Packet once you register.
What is the weather going to be like in Peru?
The average high temperature in Cusco doesn’t change much during the year and is usually in the mid-60s degrees Fahrenheit while the overnight low is in the lower 40s. Temperatures will be about five degrees warmer in Lima and nighttime temperatures will be about 10 degrees colder on the trek. We avoid the rainy season, which runs from late October to early April. Therefore, you should expect excellent hiking weather but with cool nights.
What is the best time to be traveling to Machu Picchu?
The dry season, which is important when hiking, runs from mid-April to mid-October. We prefer the shoulder seasons of April, May, June, September, and October when the crowds are fewer and the rain still stays mostly away but any time during the dry season is a good time to be in Peru!
What is the best way to get to the tour and where do we meet?
Our tours provide airport-to-airport service. You are responsible for getting to and from Lima, the only international gateway in Peru. Our local agency will meet you at the airport in Lima and transfer you to our hotel. We will send you information about flights to Peru after you reserve your spot.
How high do we trek and will I be able to deal with the altitude?
The highest altitude we reach on our Classic Inca Trail trek is 13,860 feet. This is not comparable to similar heights in North America as we are much closer to the equator and the climate is much milder. Nevertheless, the effects of altitude are the same and you will feel them: light headache, possible nausea, dizziness, etc. We spend two days in the Sacred Valley adjusting to the altitude, so you will likely do fine. We do not expect you to have any prior experience with altitude. On our Royal (Original) Inca Trail trek, the highest altitude we reach is in Cusco at 11,220 feet but we immediately descend from there and spend two days acclimatizing in the Sacred Valley. You should have almost no altitude effects on this version of the trek.
What happens if I do not adapt well to the altitude?
The solution to altitude problems is always to descend. If you have symptoms of altitude sickness on the trek that do not go away, we will make the decision to evacuate you. This generally means turning around (if you are not over the highest pass) or continuing on to our destination (if you have crossed the pass). Thousands of people hike the Inca Trail each year and most do not have serious issues.
What should I do if I want to extend my vacation in Peru?
There are many other things to see and do in the country and we will make recommendations in our Pre-Departure Packet. The Amazon rainforest, Lake Titicaca, the Nazca Lines, and the coast are all possible destinations.
Do I need a passport and visa?
You must have a passport valid for at least six months upon entry to Peru. If you do not have a passport, you should call your local Passport Agency (in the phone book) now to get the process started. North Americans and most Europeans receive a travel visa to Peru upon entry at the airport.
Do I need to get immunizations?
No immunizations are required for entry to Peru. However, you should still consult with a travel doctor about what immunizations you should have. Recommended shots might include:
- Tetanus & Diphtheria: You should have been immunized as a kid but these shots require a booster every 10 years.
- Hepatitis A: You should strongly consider getting a shot to prevent this food- and water-borne disease.
- Hepatitis B: This is a blood- or semen-borne disease that you are at risk of contracting if you have sex, have a blood transfusion, or come into contact with infected needles (possibly in a hospital).
What ability level do I really need to be for this Adventure?
This Adventure for the Classic Inca Trail is rated as More Difficult. The four-day hiking will be strenuous for some people and quite moderate for others. While being in shape is not a predictor of how you will do at altitude, it will certainly help you on the hikes themselves. We recommend you start working out several months in advance of the trip if you are not already doing so. You should be aware that you likely will experience some mild forms of altitude sickness such as slight headaches or an upset stomach. Additionally, you should be aware that you are traveling to a developing country where sanitation and services are not up to the standard you experience at home, although we make every effort to ensure your good health while you are with us. The difficulty level of the Royal (Original) Inca Trail is much lower, making it suitable for most people.
What is included in the trip price?
Included in the trip price is double-occupancy lodging, all meals except one lunch and one dinner, local transportation, airport pickup, professional local and Zephyr guides, group camping equipment, entrance fee into most local attractions, and a Zephyr Adventures souvenir. Not included are your international flight, the domestic flight of approximately $280, one international departure tax of approximately $30 and two domestic departure taxes of approximately $6 each, sleeping bag (optional rental is $75), gratuities for your local guides, drinks when dining in restaurants, and personal expenditures.
For what type of people would you recommend this Adventure?
This Adventure is for people looking for a challenging and culturally interesting vacation. Machu Picchu is one of the most amazing places on the earth and is that much better after having spent four days walking there on the Inca Trail. If you are active, willing to brave a foreign culture, and looking for a little adventure, come join us in Peru!