The Inca Trail is the most famous hiking route to Machu Picchu. In total it covers 43 kilometers in 4 days and 3 nights through an ancient network of trails made by the Incas hundreds of years ago. The beginning of the route is in Pisqacucho (kilometer 82), near the town of Ollantaytambo in Cusco. The end is at the Intipunku (Puerta del Sol) in the Inca City of Machu Picchu.
The Inca Trail is considered among the 5 best hiking trails in the world. Daily they only allow a maximum of 500 people to enter their roads. Of them, approximately 200 are tourists. The others are support staff: guides, porters, cooks. This route is the way the Incas formerly arrived at Machu Picchu. Some of the most famous questions is: can you book the Inca Trail in Cusco? This blog will explain you everything about it and how you can book the Inca trail permit.
Can you book the Inca Trail in Cusco?
Due to the high demand for tickets, it is only possible to book the Inca Trail online and in advance. Once in Cusco it is only possible to book the short Inca Trail.
How to buy the ticket to the Inca Trail step by step?
Booking an entrance to the Inca Trail is easy and safe. You should only look for availability in an online travel agency. Payment is by credit or debit card (Visa, MasterCard).
- Search for an authorized agency online
In the network there are several agencies dedicated to offering entrance tickets to the Inca Trail. Choose the one that seems most reliable. The website must have an Internet security system that protects your personal information. All agencies must be authorized by the Ministry of Culture of Peru.
- Find free spaces
After choosing the website (tourism agency) go to the section ‘availability’. Remember that the reservation is made approximately 6 months before. Find the day and month in which you want to do the Inca Trail. If you found availability, click on ‘Reserve’.
- Complete the data and special requirements
To buy your tickets to the Inca Trail you must provide personal information such as names, identity document number (passport), email, among others. In addition, you must indicate some extra special requirement as a carrier, vegetarian food, canes, etc.
- Make the payment
Payment is through various payment methods. Currently the most used is PayPal because it accepts Visa, MasterCard and American Express. Some agencies ask for an advance payment and then complete the transaction in the city of Cusco. Finally, you will obtain the permits to do the Inca Trail.
How long before booking the entrance to the Inca Trail?
Entrance tickets to the Inca Trail must be reserved with a minimum of 5 or 6 months before. However, if you plan to visit during May, June or July; You must get your ticket 7 or 8 months in advance.
Short Inca Trail tickets are not that hard to get. It is recommended to make the reservation weeks in advance. In the months of May, June or July; try to reserve a month before.
How much does it cost to do the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu?
The only way to do the Inca Trail is to hire the services of a tourism agency authorized by the Ministry of Culture of Peru. Booking is only possible with the internet. These companies organize and offer their services in different qualities. It is for this reason that the prices vary according to each travel agency.
Prices Inca Trail
Adult prices; 600 USD
University student prices: 580 USD
* Rates are approximate. Each tourism agency has its own prices.
The price of the Inca Trail includes guides, train and tickets to Machu Picchu?
The price includes the entrance to Machu Picchu, transportation by bus, train, food, professional guide, cooks, porters (carry luggage) and camping equipment.
If you want additional equipment (tents, mats, sleeping bag, cane), a better train service or an extra carrier, you must pay an additional price.
What alternatives are there if I do not find availability for the Inca Trail?
If there is no longer available for the Inca Trail on the desired day, you can take the trek to Machu Picchu on the Salkantay route. Another option is the Lares trekking route, the Inca Jungle or, simply, the short Inca Trail (2 days).
So, can you book the Inca Trail in Cusco? The answer is NO, you only can book the Short Inca Trail once in Cusco. For the Classic Inca Trail 4 days is recommended to book it by internet 7 or 8 months before.