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A Get Outside Guide: The Choquequirao Trek | Peru

Alternatives to Machu Picchu - Choquequirao

The Choquequirao trek is an adventure in the truest sense of the word. Sitting high in the Vilcabamba mountain range, the 15th-Century Choquequirao Archaeological Complex is only accessible by foot. And while Choquequirao closely resembles Machu Picchu with terraces, temples, plazas, and aqueducts, there is one very noticeable difference between the two: Machu Picchu gets around 3,300  visitors per day, while Choquequirao sees an average of only 15 to 20.

The Choquequirao Trek at a Glance

When it comes to difficulty, the trek to Choquequirao is pretty damn hard, but you probably already know that the coolest experiences usually are.

The 4-day trek means a 1,500m descent into the valley followed by a 1,800m climb (and back out the same way you came). If you undertake the full 9-day Choquequirao Trek to Machu Picchu, you’ll make the same plod to the ruins but continue along for several days, climbing high passes and dipping into lowland basins.

The Choquequirao trek (with or without a guide) is relatively tricky compared to other treks in Peru. But, struggle through the tough parts, and you’ll get to experience one of the best Inca Trail & Machu Picchu alternatives in all of the Sacred Valley. And to experience something like Machu Picchu, but with practical solitude makes the Choquequirao trek totally worth it.

Interested in undertaking the Choquequirao Trek? Get out there and do it. Go for the adventure, go for the experience, and most importantly, go before they build a damn cable car. I’ll show you how.

Choquequirao Ruins Peru - View of the Park

Want the Guidebook?

It was tough to get information on the Choquequirao trek in 2016. Besides a couple of blog posts and an email thread with the guys at Effortless Digital, there was hardly any information about the trek back then! That’s why we just published our first ever Travel Outlandish Guide about the Choquequirao Trek!

It includes detailed topographical maps created by a cartographer, 3 researched trekking routes (including the full route to Machu Picchu), an overview of campsites, recommended tour operators, and tons more information that we couldn’t fit into one post.

Updates April 3, 2019: We’re live! Check out what’s in the guidebook or download for $2.99 here.

Trekking Routes to Choquequirao

The Choquequirao Trek is a 4-day to 9-day trek that visits Choquequirao. There are 3 major routes as of 2019, but there are slight variations based on your fitness or interest.

Gear Rental in Cusco - Carrying Gear on Choquequirao TrekWondering which route to take? Any way you go will boast untouched scenery plucked straight out of nature documentaries. Choquequirao can be your destination or hike from Choquequirao to Machu Picchu for an epic Inca faceoff. The 3 main routes are:

  • The Classic Route: The Classic Route is a four-day out-and-back hike to Choquequirao that starts and finishes in Cachora
  • The Huanipaca Route: The Huanipaca Route is the fastest route to Choquequirao; it’s also a four-day hike that starts in Cachora, but rather than hiking out the way you came, you’ll spend your last night at Villa los Loros and take a taxi out to Huanipaca.
  • The Yanama Route: The Yanama Route is a nine-day trek from Cachora to Machu Picchu that covers all the highlights of the Sacred Valley with stops at Choquequirao, Pinchinuyoc, Llactapata, and Machu Picchu; this trek starts in Cachora and eventually joins up with the Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu.

The Classic Route in Detail

Below is a detailed itinerary for the Classic Route to Choquequirao. Kilometer markers are based on the distance between stops or campsites. 

Day 1: Cachora to Santa Rosa Alta // Hiking Distance: 24 km or 13 km (with taxi)

Start in Cachora. From town, you’ll need to get to the trailhead at Capuliyoc Mirador (11 km) which can be done on foot (2.5 – 3 hours) or by taxi (30 minutes). As Cachora to Capuliyoc is a rather unexciting footpath that intersects with the road, it is preferable to catch a taxi and start trekking from Capuliyoc. From the Capuliyoc Mirador, you’ll make a steep descent into Apurimac Canyon via a long series of switchbacks. As you walk, you’ll get views of Padreyoc and the river below.

The first campsite you’ll pass is Cocamasana, and onward still is a campsite nestled between the trees called Chiquisca (7 km). You can choose to stop here or continue towards the Apurímac River. Just before the bridge over the Apurímac River, you will come upon another paid campsite with nice views, fire pits, bathrooms, showers, a basic food store, and simple kitchen called Playa Rosalina (2 km). You can camp here, or if you still have the daylight or energy, you can venture further with an ascent to one of the two sites at Santa Rosa Baja (3 km) or Santa Rosa Alta (1 km), though this site is often closed. Don’t be fooled by the short distances – the uphill is tough after a long day of hiking, but it will cut some of the altitude gains off of your next day. It’s worth pushing for it if you can!

The Choquequirao Trek, Day 1The Choquequirao Trek, Day 1

Day 2: Santa Rosa Alta to Choquequirao // Hiking Distance: 7 km

It’s a tough climb from Santa Rosa Alta to Choquequirao. Before getting to the ruins, you’ll hit the tiny mountaintop town of Marampata (3 km). While it’s only 3 km of hiking from Santa Rosa Alta to Marampata, this part is tough because of switchbacks, false summits, limited tree cover, and an altitude gain of over 700m. You can either opt to toss your bags in town or continue on to the campgrounds located just beneath the ruins. From Marampata, it’s a gradual incline towards the Choquequirao campsite (4 km), offering a significant reprieve from the rest of the day. If you start early enough, you can make a quick visit to the Choquequirao ruins before returning to your campsite for the night.

The Choquequirao Trek, Day 2The Choquequirao Trek, Day 2The Choquequirao Trek, Day 2The Choquequirao Trek, Day 2The Choquequirao Trek, Day 2

Day 3: Choquequirao to Playa Rosalina // Hiking Distance: 11 km

If you camped at Choquequirao, wake up early and hike back to the ruins for sunrise. The return trip to Cachora is easy enough to navigate; you’ll just return back the way you came. That said, the switchbacks and steep downhill of 1,880m towards the Apurímac River make the descent almost as physically challenging as the way up. Depending on how much energy you’ve spent, you can set up camp at Santa Rosa Alta (7 km) or continue further to the river-side camp, Playa Rosalina (4 km).

The Choquequirao Trek, Day 2Choquequirao Ruins in Peru - View of the Park

Day 4: Playa Rosalina to Cachora // Distance: 20 km or 9 km (with taxi)

Your ascent time to the Capuliyoc Mirador will vary. If you camped at Santa Rosa Alta, you’ll hike downhill (4 km). It’s all uphill from Playa Rosalina (9 km). While much of the hike to Capuliyoc is an easy climb along the side of the canyon, it finishes with the same series of sharp switchbacks that you started with. Once you’ve finally reached the Capuliyoc Mirador, you definitely deserve a cold drink. From there, you can hike the easy downhill hike to Cachora (2 hours) or take the short taxi ride (30 minutes).The Choquequirao Trek, Day 3The Choquequirao Trek, Day 4

Get the guidebook for route maps + day-by-day itineraries for the Huanipaca Route & Yanama Route to Machu Picchu

 

Choquequirao Campsites

There are designated campsites and even a couple of simple hotels along the route to Choquequirao. The campsites are surprisingly well-maintained, and many have bathrooms, showers, shops, and simple kitchens.

Choquequirao Trek - Santa Rosa Camp Site

  • Cachora (0km): The starting point of the Choquequirao Trek is a small town with hotels, restaurants, and plenty of food stores.
  • Cocamasana (~16 km): Brand new campsite with awesome views across the valley, but often not open. Three small pitches and a terrace with open space for tents, basic toilets.
  • Chiquisca (19 km): Paid campsite just before a rough descent to the river with basic toilet and shower facilities and simply cooked food for purchase.
  • Playa Rosalina (21 km): Paid campsite next to the river with nice scenery, fire pits at every site, bathrooms, showers, a very basic food store, and a kitchen that prepares simple food. Reports from 2019 that this site is less well maintained than it used to be and without running water. 
  • Alfonso (22 km): Simple campsite, no bathrooms, kitchen access. Reports that this site is often closed and could be subjected to flooding if it rains due to no grass and limited drainage.
  • Santa Rosa Baja (24 km): Paid campsites with very basic toilets and showers, but nice views of the canyon. Located next to a private hut selling food and simple meals.  A second family-run operation nearby with horses and mules, but gets very buggy. 
  • Santa Rosa Alta (25 km): Free campsite just up the hill from Santa Rosa Baja with clean facilities and simple meals. Sites are nice. Reports that it’s often closed, but the owner has plans to open it soon. 
  • Marampata (28 km): A tiny town with several campsites, stores for buying food, and even a small hotel. The best place to hire a mule if you’re too tired to continue the trek on your own.

 

A complete list of sites en route to Huanipaca or Machu Picchu detailed in the book.

Guide or No Guide?

Unlike the Inca Trail, it is possible to do the Choquequirao Trek and other Inca Trail alternatives without a guide. That said, the Choquequirao trek is recognized as one of the most challenging treks in Peru. You should make an honest assessment of your fitness and weather before going it alone.

The Choquequirao Trek, Gear Rental

Choquequirao Tours with a Guide (from Cusco)

Most guided tours include round-trip transport (from Cusco to Cachora), pre-trip accommodation, a guide, a muleteer, a mule, necessary camping equipment, and food. There are plenty of advantages to taking a Choquequirao tour. On a trek as difficult as this one, you won’t have to worry about navigation, carrying your gear, or logistics. Your guide will offer localized knowledge about the region and the ruins that you’ll probably miss on your own.

The notable disadvantages are that this trek is still super expensive. The tour will cost between $500-$1500 per person if you’re arranging it from Cusco, which is as much as 10x more than it would cost on your own. Another drawback is that you’ll have someone to smooth your logistics over, and where’s the fun in that? 

Here are a couple of the best-reviewed companies running the Choquequirao Trek from Cusco.

  • Choquequirao Trek (from $500)
  • Apus Peru (from $475)
  • Tierras Vivas (from $450)
  • SAM Travel Peru (from $537)
  • Villa los Loros (from $550)

Choquequirao Tours with a Guide (from Cachora)

If you’ve already got your camping gear and don’t mind figuring out accommodation and transport, you can also find a tour from Cachora that will include a guide, a muleteer, a mule, necessary camping equipment, and food. Pros of this option are similar to the above. All the navigation, carrying, and logistics are taken care of and you’ll have someone who knows the region!

The disadvantages are that it’s still more costly than going alone at $300-$800 (though prices are nearly half what you’d pay from Cusco). You’ll also have to arrange at the last minute since most of the guides in Cachora don’t have a website or storefront.

Choquequirao Trek without a Guide

Since this whole post is about doing the Choquequirao trek without a guide, I’ll start with the disadvantages. You’ll be hauling your own gear and worrying about logistics. You’ll need to make arrangements for your own camping gear (here are some rental agencies in Cusco) and bring cooking equipment and food in case you’re traveling during low season. But if you’re like me, the struggle is half the fun.

The Choquequirao Trek without a guide is a good option if you’re on a budget or like the adventure of independent hiking. The trail is very straightforward and well marked along the Classic Route, so there’s truly no way to get lost. You’ll go at your own pace. The only real costs of the Choquequirao trek without a guide are local buses, simple hotels, park entrance fees, campsite fees, food, and transport. Without markup by the tour operator, you’ll find that these costs are pretty negligible. All in all, a four-day hike to Choquequirao shouldn’t cost more than $150 including food and gear rental (or less if you’re with a larger group).

You can check out my detailed cost breakdown below for the Choquequirao trek solo.


The Choquequirao Guidebook

GET COMPLETE INFORMATION ON CHOQUEQUIRAO TREKKING ROUTES INCLUDING DETAILED CHOQUEQUIRAO TREK MAPS AND CAMPSITE INFORMATION INSIDE “THE CHOQUEQUIRAO TREK – A GUIDE TO HIKING THE OTHER INCA TRAIL

 


How much does the Choquequirao Trek Cost?

Here’s a general projection of costs for two people on the four-day Classic Route to Choquequirao (2019). The route becomes significantly more expensive once the trail joins with the Salkantay. You should increase your daily budget the closer you get to Machu Picchu. I bought and rented everything I needed in Cusco, but some basic supplies are also available in Cachora.

  • Roundtrip Transport from Cusco to Cachora ($30-$50)
  • Pre-Accommodation in Cachora ($30-$40)
  • Campsite Fees (Free – $20)
  • Camping Equipment Rental ($60)
  • Food & Water (from Cusco) ($30)
  • Food & Water (purchased) (Varies)
  • Entrance Fee to Choquequirao ($18)
  • Optional: Mule Hire ($120)

Costs are per person. The per person cost of accommodation, gear rental, and mule hire is less if you’re sharing with another person. If you do the hike independently, it shouldn’t cost more than $150-$200 per person.

How to get to Choquequirao

The Choquequirao trek begins in Cachora, a small village about 3 hours outside of Cusco. Here’s more information on getting from Cusco to Cachora as of 2019.

  • Take a taxi from Central Cusco to Terminal Terrestre (S/8 / $2.40)
  • Get the bus to Abancay (from S/30 / $9), but ask to stop at “Ramal de Cachora.” This is about 3 hours and 150km away, and the bus won’t stop here unless you ask. Keep an eye out for the “148 km” marker to be sure you don’t miss it. At the time of writing, Oltursa, Cruz del Sur, and Movilbus had busses from Cusco to Abancay bookable online. To depart earlier in the day, go directly to Terminal Terrestre to book your bus ticket. If you miss your stop, you can get off in Abancay and try to catch a shared minivan back to Ramal de Cachora (S/5 / $1.50)
  • Once you’ve arrived at Ramal de Cachora, you can either: wait for a shared minibus or “collectivo” to fill (S/5 / $1.50) or pay for a private taxi (S/30 / $9) directly to Cachora. Be prepared to bargain as the taxis and collectivo drivers can be a little sheisty along this route.
  • Optional: If you choose to start your trek from Capuliyoc Mirador, you can hire a taxi in town (S/30 / $9)

What Food to Pack for a 4 Day Trek

You can buy food on the trail, but it was nearly impossible to find open shops in low season. Below are some cheap and locally available ingredients that you can bring along:

  • Water (4 L of water ($2), and instant coffee ($1))
  • Mains (4x ramen noodles ($1.50), 1 loaf of bread ($1), cooked rice ($1), penne noodles ($.50), 8 tamales ($3), 1 packet of soup ($.50))
  • Proteins (2 cans of tuna ($3), protein powder ($1), 4 boiled eggs ($2))
  • Snacks (6 packets of cookies ($2), peanuts ($2), raisins ($1))
  • Condiments (1 packet of peanut butter ($3), 1 packet of jam ($.50), condiments ($1))
  • Fruits & Vegetables (cut broccoli and carrots ($1); 4 apples ($2)

Where to Stay In Cachora

As I mentioned, you’ll need to get there a night ahead to give yourself plenty of time to trek. At the time of writing, there are just two hotels in Cachora. that are listed online

CasaNostra Choquequirao | CasaNostra Choquequirao is the best accommodation in Cachora by a landslide. The simply furnished hotel is outside of the center, but the attractive surrounds make up for it. Double rooms start from $35.

Inka Dream | There’s not much dreamy about the Inka Dream. You’ll want to check out your room in advance and go in without high expectations for service. That said, the basic hotel is one of the only hotels in Cachora for the time being. Double rooms start from $40.

Still want more information about the trek? Leave us a comment or download the guidebook for $2.99!

Are you looking for an Inca Trail alternative that is adventurous, rugged, and completely awesome? A guide to hiking the Choquequirao Trek to Machu Picchu!Are you looking for an Inca Trail alternative that is adventurous, rugged, and completely awesome? A guide to hiking the Choquequirao Trek to Machu Picchu!
 

120 Comments

  • Reply
    why you can't miss the Choquequirao ruins - Travel Outlandish
    January 25, 2017 at 2:37 am

    […] Choquequirao trek may have been a real ass kicker, but having seen it, we both agree it is one of our most powerful […]

    • Reply
      keith stone
      February 14, 2017 at 5:35 am

      So I’m kinda stuck doing the classic trail… so based on your experience, is there anything that would prevent me from starting near MP and going in reverse to choquequirao/cachora? The tour companies have been a resounding no, so I’m leaning towards hiring my own guide and mules.

      • Reply
        Taylor Record
        February 15, 2017 at 1:28 am

        Are you already booked on the Classic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, Keith?

        Doing the trek in reverse is an interesting idea! I think the trek would be manageable, but it may be more difficult to find a mule/guide in Machu Picchu willing to go to Cachora (rather than guides in Cachora willing to go to Machu Picchu). How much time do you have? Would you consider doing it as two separate treks?

  • Reply
    Florian
    January 28, 2017 at 10:53 pm

    Great description! Thank you so much – will be going solo on the trek in a couple of weeks and it was exactly what I have been looking fore! Great stuff!!!

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      January 31, 2017 at 5:16 pm

      Thanks for your comment, Florian! We hoped it would be useful for someone. Send us a note if you have any last minute questions before the trek! It’s pretty intrepid but well worth it.

    • Reply
      Anthony Coyne
      February 12, 2017 at 8:51 pm

      Hey Florian, I’m currently in Cusco looking other like minded folk to do this with and not having very much joy, everyones more keen on guided treks, bus tours etc if you wouldn’t mind the extra company let me know 🙂

      • Reply
        Iet
        July 21, 2019 at 2:48 am

        Hi,

        Thanks for this great post!
        We want to do the yanama trek next week. Do you know anything about watersuplies? How much food and water should we take with us, since we don’t want our backpack to weigh more than necessary.. Is august low season that everything’s closed? (We don’t think so, but not sure)

        • Reply
          Taylor Record
          July 22, 2019 at 9:16 pm

          Hey there. You’re welcome and glad you found it helpful! Everything should be up-and-running in August. When we traveled in low season, we were still able to get water from our camps and didn’t carry more than we needed for the day. It’s my understanding that the campsites, once the trail joins with Salkantay, are pretty established and you’ll find shops and even restaurants where you can stock up! Hope this helps and let me know if I can answer anything else before you head out.

  • Reply
    Lizzy
    February 1, 2017 at 8:42 am

    Epic post! Fantastic guide and breakdown of costs, as well as images. Loved this!

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      February 1, 2017 at 12:25 pm

      Thanks a lot, Lizzy! Do you guys have any plans to come to South America after your current trip?

  • Reply
    will
    February 1, 2017 at 6:20 pm

    Wow guys! So glad you made it! This was the last trek we did before we stopped blogging and started Effortless Digital! Your photos are sharp and on point, you’ve got some killer bokeh shots! Looks like you did it the right way too! We knew very little about it before we left, so we carried everything, including the water. I’d highly recommend a Sawyer mini to anyone that travels to South America. It’ll save you a ton of money, weight, and you’ll use less plastic.

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      February 6, 2017 at 2:26 pm

      Your advice was so appreciated, Will! Knowing that we only had to carry 2L of water definitely saved us a ton of weight. We used purification tablets, but love the idea of traveling with a water filter next time!

  • Reply
    3 unique drink + food experiences at Faces of Cusco - Travel Outlandish
    February 6, 2017 at 2:19 pm

    […] some months of remote trekking, quinoa soup eating, and hostel sleeping our way around South America, the idea of a sports bar […]

  • Reply
    3 incredible alternatives to Machu Picchu - Travel Outlandish
    February 8, 2017 at 3:23 pm

    […] and seen things, but we’ve never seen anything quite like Choquequirao. Accessible only by a very difficult trek, Choquequirao is a partially-excavated complex of Incan ruins estimated to be about 3x the size of […]

  • Reply
    Ken fellman
    February 11, 2017 at 4:34 pm

    Excellent post – thanks so very much! I have been going back & forth, guide / no guide….and after reading your review, and leaning no guide.

    So questions: How much time at the ruins is sufficient? Am trying to decide if we do this in 4 days / 3 nights, or add one more day and basically spend Day 3 at the ruins instead of heading back. Also am curious re: water. Already have all the gear (filter, tablets, can boil water), so how much do we really need to carry in, as I suspect we can refill along the way. Any advice on this would be really appreciated!

    • Reply
      Taylor
      February 11, 2017 at 7:30 pm

      Hey Ken! We’re glad it was helpful. If you can bear the thought of carrying your own gear, going without a guide definitely adds to the adventure. When are you going on your trek?

      Regarding time at the ruins, we’d recommend 4-5 hours. If you’re camping in the archeological site, it’s only about a 30 minute walk from campsite to the ruins — you can easily do sunset one day and sunrise the next and that would be plenty. If you’re staying in the town Marampata, the hike is about 1.5 hours each way, so you’d be better off visiting the ruins in one day, and adding an extra day onto your trek.

      As for the water, we were surprised how easy it was! We carried a 1L bottle/person with a 2L bottle for refills (4L total). Food is sporadically available, but you will be able to refill your water in a campsite or stream every 2-3 hours. The water looks quite clean, but having the tablets is still a good idea!

      Let us know if you have any other questions!

  • Reply
    Anthony Coyne
    February 12, 2017 at 8:27 pm

    Great post Taylor, I was looking for something precisely like this and you’ve really sold this trek to me.

    Unfortunately I’m solo traveling and everyone I’m meeting in Cusco looks at me like I’m mad when I suggest it. I’ve got all the gear, tent, stove, sleeping bag etc but not not really up for a 9 day solo hike or going with a guide.

    If anyone is around and wouldn’t mind the company of a friendly Englishmen let me know, I’d really hate to miss out.

    Muchos gracias.

  • Reply
    Kristen Padilla
    May 18, 2017 at 8:10 pm

    Great post! Thanks for all of the info. I will be heading on a solo trek in the coming weeks and am very excited! Can you confirm that there is a bridge to be crossed at the bottom of the canyon. I know it was washed away, a while ago but I have been unable to confirm if they are still using a pulley system or if a new bridge was built.

    Thanks!

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      May 20, 2017 at 8:00 pm

      Hi Kristen. I’m so glad you found it useful! There was a serious suspension bridge when we were there in December 2016 (see the picture of the back of Daniel’s head). I have to assume this is the new bridge, so no pulleys required!

  • Reply
    Anna
    May 19, 2017 at 3:16 am

    Great post! We have tickets booked to Machu Picchu and were planning to go to Choquequirao after. Could we just do the 9 day trek backwards starting from Machu Picchu? Or will we get stopped if we’re not with an official guide?
    Thanks!

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      May 20, 2017 at 8:12 pm

      Good question, Anna! I haven’t heard of anyone doing the hike backwards, but it’s my understanding the only one where a guide is required is the Inca Trail. As you’d be walking along the Salkantay route, my only recommendation would be to check out the elevation gain/loss each day to ensure it’s doable. Let me know if you end up doing it this way! I’d be really interested to hear about it.

  • Reply
    The Choquequirao Trek Without a Guide – revel in the novel
    May 22, 2017 at 2:28 am

    […] agencies offer the typical four-day trek (two days to get there, two days to return), I’d read that the trek was totally doable on your own, and much cheaper (the cheapest tour I found was $300 […]

  • Reply
    Alex
    May 25, 2017 at 7:23 pm

    Great advice! Any tips on how to actually find and book a guide/muleteer from cachora if you decide you are not quite hardcore enough to go it alone? Thanks..

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      May 28, 2017 at 5:53 pm

      Hey Alex. You’d be surprised how easy it is! It seems almost everyone can recommend you to someone who offers the service. I’d recommend arriving a day before and asking around – your hotel, restaurant, or one of the small agencies in town can certainly set you up with someone last minute. Enjoy!

  • Reply
    Jasper
    May 29, 2017 at 5:38 pm

    Hi there!
    I want to do the trek in a couple of days, is there anyone who would like to share company? Want to do it solo and probably without mules.
    Staying in cuzco right now and will visit the machu picchu seperately with my girlfriend, she has to return home after and im free to do the trek! 😀
    Cheers!

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      May 30, 2017 at 3:51 pm

      Good luck finding a companion, Jasper! Hope you enjoy the trek as much as we did.

  • Reply
    Martin
    June 14, 2017 at 7:09 am

    Thanks for the guide! Seems really helpful!

    One more thing about the equipment:
    How cold and how rainy & windy is it getting? Is a +3°C comfort sleeping bag and a ultralight-weight tent enough?

    Thanks!

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      June 16, 2017 at 4:05 pm

      Hey Martin. The minimum altitude is 1,500m and the max is 3,000m so this trek is relatively low altitude for Cusco. We went with a +3°C sleeping bag in December and was sweating one night! The biggest challenge in December was the rain. When are you planning your trek?

      • Reply
        Martin
        June 30, 2017 at 2:16 pm

        Thanks mate for the answer. Totally forgot to answer back…
        We’ll be there at the beginning of September.

  • Reply
    A Choquequirao Trek
    June 19, 2017 at 6:55 pm

    […] Unguided Solo […]

  • Reply
    Leland Dorchester
    July 13, 2017 at 2:41 am

    Hi there, thanks for the great post! Some friends and I want to do this trek in a few days and we just have a couple logistical questions we were hoping you could help with.
    1) Does anyone know if the bridge withstood the flooding that occurred towards the end of March (2017)?
    2) How easy is it to hire a mule/muleteer in Cachora? We are planning on doing the trek unguided but would still like to have a mule to carry some gear and we will also likely only have 1 day in Cachora and would ideally like to leave the following morning.
    3) How difficult is it to find lodging in Cachora if not prearranged prior to arriving?

    Thanks in advance for any help!

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      July 14, 2017 at 11:21 am

      Hi Leland, glad to hear you’re going! 1) I have to assume it’s still passable. The bridge is a sturdy suspension bridge and quite high above the river. 2) Extremely easy! The first woman we met in town asked if we needed to hire her son. Any hostel, restaurant, or shop can recommend one. As it’s the key industry in Cachora, many young guys are ready and able to do the job whenever you’re ready to go. 3) I believe there are only 2 budget hotels in Cachora, and one nicer hotel (CasaNostra). You shouldn’t expect much – our room was a concrete floor with gaps in the walls and ceilings – but anything will do after a few days of trekking! Please let me know if you have any questions come up, and I’m looking forward to hearing about your trek!

  • Reply
    Daniel Gaines
    July 23, 2017 at 11:19 pm

    A quick question about transportation. Do you know how easy it is to take a collectivo to Cachora? Also you said 9 bucks for the taxi, that{s not all the way from Cusco is it? Just trying to figure out what time we need to leave Cuzco and also how early we have to make it back to Cachora to catch a bus back to Cuzco on the last day.

    Also was it easy to find lodging in Cachora when you got there or did you arrange it ahead of time?
    Thanks!
    Daniel

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      July 24, 2017 at 4:45 pm

      Hey Daniel!

      There are collectivos from Abancay to Cachora (about 30 minutes), but they only depart when they’re full. In our case, we were trying to start the hike the same day, so the taxi was our only real choice. We left Cusco at around 6am, got to Abancay by 10am, and started hiking around 11:30am. If I were to do it over again, I would have hired a taxi from Abancay all the way to the mirador to shave off the dull bit of the hike. Buses departing Abancay are a bit sporadic. We planned to leave the last day of our trek, but ended up missing the final bus. When you book your bus ticket to Abancay, try asking at the desk about current return schedule. I’d guess if you can finish up before 3pm, you can get back to Cusco on the same day. Good luck and let me know how it goes!

  • Reply
    Felix
    July 31, 2017 at 7:45 pm

    Hey guys,
    Thank you very much for all the Information. If someone is interested: Me and my brother will start at the 2nd of August to do the whole hike from Cachora to Machu Pichu (8 days). Equipment and Experience exists. Feel free to Text me. Cheers, Felix

  • Reply
    Owen
    September 28, 2017 at 6:37 pm

    I just did the Choquequirao trek 2 weeks ago. I read this post first and was a little afraid but it turned out surprisingly easy for me! I went with a tour at only $280. I met a hiker doing it independently without carrying equipment. There are hospedajes and restaurants at Marampata.

    • Reply
      Kat
      December 26, 2017 at 10:44 pm

      hi Owen, by any chance do you remember the name of the company? I’m headed there mid-Janauary

    • Reply
      Freyja
      January 7, 2018 at 7:49 pm

      Hey, I’m also considering heading in mid January, do you remember the name of the tour guide company?

  • Reply
    Trevor
    October 16, 2017 at 4:26 am

    Very interesting, thanks for information. Do you know anything about the Huanipaca route? I guess it was closed for a long time and just recently opened back up. I can’t find much info except for a little blurb on wikitravel – Instead of walking the same way back, an easier way out is to go to Huanipaca: Within 5-6 hours (2 hours down to the river, 3h uphill) you can reach the hotel “Villa Los Loros”

    I would think a roundtrip from that hotel would be a much shorter option.

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      November 1, 2017 at 11:25 pm

      Hi Trevor. I haven’t heard of the Huanipaca route, but it sounds super interesting! Choquequirao is really on the top of a mountain, so it’s hard to imagine a shortcut. Are you planning to do it? Would love an update if you do!

    • Reply
      Lisa Sheppard
      March 6, 2018 at 1:38 am

      Trevor, Wondering if you ever found any info/experience regarding the trail out to Huanipaca. We are planning on doing the trek at the end March and would appreciate having an alternate route to get back.

  • Reply
    Christelle
    October 24, 2017 at 8:29 pm

    Hi,

    Really, thank you for your article, it is really helpfull! I’m about to do this trip this January and most of the time all the info are for the high season and I wasn’t sure what to expect… I wanted to ask you if you, is it possible to do the 9 days trek without any guides? In this case, we just need to buy the entrance ticket for the Machu Picchu?
    Do we need to reserve in advance as well to see the Choquequirao ruins?
    Thank you so much for your help!
    Christelle

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      November 1, 2017 at 11:22 pm

      Hi Christelle, so glad you found it helpful! It stands out as one of my favorite memories from all of South America. It is possible to do the trek without guides, though you’d be carrying a fair amount of food and water for a trek of that duration! As I mentioned, I didn’t do the full thing, but I’ve heard it’s possible. In that case, all you’d need is your booking for Machu Picchu — you’ll be lucky if the guy is even at the ranger station to sell you a ticket when you get to Choquequirao 😉 Best of luck, and let me know if you have any other questions.

  • Reply
    Niklas Schmutz
    November 2, 2017 at 2:46 pm

    Hey Taylor
    First of all great post!
    My question is where is the best place to find equipment or guides which have equipment? Cusco, Abancay or in Cachora. And what I’ve read there’s no reservation needed and I guess it’s cheaper if you share a guide with another person or?
    Thanks,
    Niklas

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      November 3, 2017 at 9:01 am

      Hi Niklas! Cachora and Abancay are just a spec on the map, so I’d recommend getting your equipment in Cusco ahead of time. The spot we rented from was called Rosly (located at Calle Procuradores N 394, just off the Plaza de Armas). I imagine the guides are independent, so rather than paying per person, you’ll pay for their time. If you already have a travel buddy, its cheaper, but might be tough to find someone departing the same day. Let me know if you have any other questions!

      • Reply
        Schmutz Niklas
        November 3, 2017 at 1:25 pm

        Thank you for your answer!
        Yes I have one more question and that is where I could find guides which have food and equipment included as you mentioned before I think.
        Thanks

    • Reply
      Ken F
      November 3, 2017 at 11:53 pm

      Niklas, my family of 6 (Mom, me & 4 boys) just did the trek from Cachora to Choquequirau in July and while we had our own backpacks and trekking poles, we stayed at Casa de Salcantay the night prior to departure, and arranged through the owner, Jan, to rent tents and a stove, as well as he arranged a local porter (his name was Louis) who took 2 donkeys to carry our gear. Jan and his wife also will prepare an amazing meal for you, and they have a killer view to the mountain ahead. Rooms were okay, beds solid, shower not so hot (literally, very sporadic hot water and low flow, but WTH, it was a shower). As for Louis, he was super gracious & friendly, spoke only spanish. He was not a guide in the sense of hiking with us and sharing local history, but he did set up our tents, enjoy a meal with us (we took our own food and also were able to pay locals for a basic meal at a few remote sites along the way. You don’t need a guide to take you on the trek. It is well marked and safe. You would be well advised (IMHO) to have your gear carried by a donkey. The trek is arduous, reward worth it

  • Reply
    Niklas Schmutz
    November 9, 2017 at 11:12 pm

    Hey Ken,
    Thanks alot for your reply helped alot!
    Just a last thing is there any entrance fee or something like that or will you just find the ruins on their own?

    • Reply
      Ken F
      November 10, 2017 at 12:13 am

      Yes there is a small entrance fee that you pay at a Park station which is just outside of Marampata. If by chance you or someone you are traveling with happens to be enrolled in a college or university, take your Student ID in addition to your passport (you do need your passport by the way) and you can get a discount for the admission. From the Park station, you just hike on the way to the ruins. You will likely have them nearly to yourself. Be sure to save energy to hike down to the Llama terraces which are on the back side of the ruins as you approach them…and also energy to hike back up and over to get back. Steep, but worth it.

      Regards

  • Reply
    choquequirao trek
    November 18, 2017 at 2:58 am

    Less is known about the Blog Choquequirao this expedition will take you to two of the major archaeological sites in the Cusco-area: CHOQUEQUIRAO TREK TO MACHU PICCHU. The towns in our history is marking the begin and ended of the Incas society during the trek you live the most big experience hiking on the trail of the oldest culture.

  • Reply
    Jeff Pinnes
    November 21, 2017 at 2:22 am

    You can recommend with which local travel agency I can travel these traveling alone and I would like to join a group.

  • Reply
    Marta Negro
    December 28, 2017 at 7:06 pm

    Hello!! Thank you so much for all the information. I was looking for information with prices and finally!
    Some questions:
    1) The ticket to enter to choquequirao, can you buy it the same day? or do you need to buy it in advance as the machu pichu?
    2) If you do all the trek without guide, do you have to pay for camping?

    Again thank you so much. I´m going to be traveling around perú, during february and march the next 2018 and i would like to do this trek instead the inca trail.

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      December 30, 2017 at 11:54 pm

      Hi Marta. Glad you found it helpful! You definitely don’t need to buy advanced tickets to Choquequirao. Just rock up to the ranger station when you get to the top of the mountain and pay there. There are both free and paid camping sites, but we managed to stay in only free ones. The paid sites tend to have better facilities and they’re quite cheap. Ultimately, this decision should come down to how far you’re actually able to walk for the day. Hope you enjoy your time in Peru! Couldn’t recommend this trek more as an Inca Trail alternative.

  • Reply
    Lisa Sheppard
    January 2, 2018 at 12:54 am

    Is there ample size trees along this trek for hammock sleeping?

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      January 15, 2018 at 7:20 pm

      That’s a good question, Lisa. I’m afraid I wasn’t specifically scouting for this, but if you send me your email address, I can send pictures I took at a few of the campsites for you to assess?

      • Reply
        Lisa Sheppard
        March 3, 2018 at 6:07 pm

        Not sure if you received my email address for the campsite pics. Here it is again. We are leaving in 2 weeks but not doing the trek till end March.
        lisa_souther@hotmail.com

        • Reply
          Marion
          October 9, 2019 at 11:07 am

          Hey Lisa, did you end up using your hammock?

          • Taylor Record
            October 10, 2019 at 9:18 pm

            Hey Marion! Here’s a message I got from Lisa after her trek: “We were able to use hammocks at the river camp on night 1. Night 2 we slept at a little Inn in Marapata after we went to the ruins, it was quite cold, really windy, that night. I am fairly sure that the campsite close to the ruins would have ample trees but we didn’t stray off the trail to check it out. We had a siesta at the river camp day 3 when the sun was high and rested for an hour in hammocks at the horse camp after supper and hiked straight out through the 3rd night.”

  • Reply
    Ed
    January 20, 2018 at 4:40 pm

    I’m planning to do this trek in late February… I read that this is a rainy month. Would rain make this trek dangerous at any points? Do you know if many people do the trek in feb?

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      February 2, 2018 at 1:59 pm

      Hi Ed, sorry for the delay! I have to admit that the rainy season in Peru is quite serious. The hike is tough enough without rain as it’s a steep incline/decline. If you do get hit with rain, I imagine the trails would become muddy and a bit more difficult. That being said, I would say “difficult” over “dangerous”. If you hike with poles and have decent gear, it’s doable! We got hit with a pretty bad rain one night in January, and made it out to tell the tale 😉 Let me know what you decide to do!

  • Reply
    Josh Masterson
    February 9, 2018 at 4:09 pm

    Thanks so much for the article! My partner and I are planning to do the 4 day trek this upcoming mid to late February (in a week or so)..just had a few questions
    1) is the actual trailhead for the 4 day trek in Abancay or Cachora? We were thinking of spending the night in Cachora then hiking early the next day…just wanted to know where exactly to start hiking.
    2) where exactly does the trail finish? Also curious if the trail is well marked and easy to stay on course?

    Thank you so much for the information! Super helpful

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      February 11, 2018 at 8:00 am

      So glad you found it helpful, Josh! 1) Cachora is closer. Abancay is the point you can reach by bus, and Cachora is about 30 minutes on by taxi or combi. Technically, the trail starts from the Capuliyoc Mirador. If you want to shave off the day of walking along the road, it’s best to take a taxi ride there and start from the Mirador. 2) Most people will finish the hike at the Choquequirao ruins and backtrack. The trail is insanely easy to follow as it’s really the only worn path in the whole valley. Good luck, and let me know if any other questions pop up!

  • Reply
    David Helms
    April 22, 2018 at 9:15 pm

    Hi, thanks for a great guide.
    We are three people planning to do the Choquequirao trip the next week (in the end of April).
    We heard from a travel agency (Machu Picchu Reservations, a big agency) that you actually don’t need to bring a tent, instead you could stay in the houses of locals for the night (for a small cost of course). Do anyone know if that’s true?

    • Reply
      Taylor
      April 24, 2018 at 3:29 pm

      David, when we went in low season (December) we hardly saw any people/houses along the way! You can for sure find accommodation in Marampata and Cachora, but I’d be nervous to recommend going without a tent. Does anyone else know?

  • Reply
    David
    May 21, 2018 at 9:17 pm

    Thank you for your answer :). Sorry for responding so late. We went to Choquequirao in the end of April and I can confirme that you need to bring a tent but you can buy meals and water in the route.

    • Reply
      Taylor
      May 25, 2018 at 3:47 pm

      Thanks for the update, David! Hope you had a nice hike 🙂

  • Reply
    Ben Alain
    June 11, 2018 at 5:52 pm

    I would say that apart from the steep hills, a major aspect of the trek is the Sun. I don´t know if its climate change or what, but at 8am, the sun hits very hard the side of the donwhill to the Apurimac River. IT makes it very challenging, exhausting and very easy to dehydrate as the sun hits the dirt/sand path, which makes the realfeel temperature to feel as if you are in the desert. SO, I strongly suggest to start the trek very early in the morning, so that you can get to the other side of the valley before 10am.

    Mule herders now charge at least 45 -50 soles.

    You can buy drinks (water, sugary drinks, sodas, gatorades) at Chiquisca, Playa Rosalina, Santa Rosa and Marampata. It is quite expensive. 2-3 dollars per bottle.

    I personally went with Runnatrip. A new company founded by local entrepeneurs. The experience was great, met other travelers from Europe and had a great time.

    • Reply
      Taylor
      September 13, 2018 at 12:11 pm

      TRUE. The sun was a real killer on the ascent. Remember those switchbacks? Thanks for the updates on the trek.

  • Reply
    Jason H
    June 16, 2018 at 8:39 pm

    Hey, so I am planning to do this trek alone (just the 4 day route that you did), and was wondering did you do it completely alone or did you hire a mule to help carry weight? I am very confident in my hiking/backpacking ability but it would be reassuring to find someone else who has completed it solo without any help at all. Thanks

    • Reply
      Taylor
      June 17, 2018 at 7:36 pm

      Hey Jason. We did this one on our own (no mule or guide!), and it’s definitely doable. I will admit I would have LOVED to have a mule for the last day of the trek, but there weren’t any for hire on the trail. Good luck with your hike!

  • Reply
    BJ
    August 30, 2018 at 9:45 pm

    Nice read, as I’m about to depart for Lima, travelling solo PEru and Chile, I tried to get a guided trek setup, but since I’m solo prices wnet as high as 1,200,00!! I’ll be doing Colca solo and after reading your story, thinking of doing Choquequirao solo too. I didn’t know renting your equipment would be so cheap an easy, but I prefer my own any way. I do think I’ll hire a muleteer, so besides sharing food ( I expect we can buy it somewhere)(Carrying some freeze dried sachets but not for 2) do they have their own tent and other gear?

    Oh and anyone wanting to do the trek September ’18, around 10-15, let me know… might be nice to share the experience.

    • Reply
      Taylor
      August 31, 2018 at 4:24 pm

      Hey BJ. Great to hear! I started solo trekking based on how expensive the guided treks were, but now I actually prefer it! As for gear, it is cheap and easy to rent in Cusco, but it can definitely be worth bringing your own if you already own it.

      There are tons of markets and grocery stores in Cusco, or places to buy your basics in Cachora. Muleteers will travel with their own tent and gear. Hope you enjoy your trip!

  • Reply
    Birkus
    September 8, 2018 at 2:27 pm

    Hi there! Great post as i m coming back very often to Peru its in my bucket list already!
    I m kinda confused if i start walking from Cachora to Aquas Calientes… Do I need any permits? As i m afraid of regulations of Inca trail…

    Thx

    • Reply
      Taylor
      September 9, 2018 at 7:42 pm

      Hi Birkus. To my knowledge, you only need a permit for the Classic Inca Trail (the hike that finishes at the Sun Gate of Machu Picchu). With this trail, you won’t enter directly to Machu Picchu and will instead take the bus from Aguas Calientes. Let me know if you have any other questions and enjoy your trip!

  • Reply
    Walt
    September 16, 2018 at 1:22 pm

    Thank you for the information and all the details. A month ago I did the RT Cachora to Choque route. On the 21st of Sept. I plan on starting in Cachora and going all the way to Aguas Calientes. Again, thank you for your details.

    • Reply
      Taylor
      September 18, 2018 at 8:20 am

      Hey Walt. So glad it was helpful! I’m actually super curious about the Cachora to Aguas Calientes route. Do you mind if I email you after your trek with some questions?

      • Reply
        Walt
        September 18, 2018 at 6:56 pm

        I replied in the wrong place. Sure. If you have anything specific, ask me now and I will be sure and check it out while in route. I start hiking this Friday early. My biggest question is how to get from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo without spending a fortune for a train ticket from Aguas to Ollantaytambo.

  • Reply
    Chuck Emary
    September 17, 2018 at 7:43 pm

    Hi – I have started planning a trip for next year. Planning on bringing all my gear with me. Anyway what about hammock camping vs tent camping, any thoughts?

    • Reply
      Taylor
      September 18, 2018 at 8:18 am

      Hey Chuck. Had someone ask about this in March and she’s since done the trek. I’ll reach out and let you know what she says! Is it ok if I email you the response?

    • Reply
      Walt
      September 18, 2018 at 12:20 pm

      Sure. If you have anything specific, ask me now and I will be sure and check it out while in route. I start hiking this Friday early. My biggest question is how to get from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo without spending a fortune for a train ticket from Aguas to Ollantaytambo.

    • Reply
      Taylor
      September 18, 2018 at 3:37 pm

      Hey Chuck! I just heard back from a reader who did the trek with a hammock in March. Here’s what she had to say: “We were able to use hammocks at the river camp on night one (Playa Rosalina). Night 2 we slept at a little Inn in Marapata after we went to the ruins, it was quite cold, really windy, that night. I am fairly sure that the campsite close to the ruins would have ample trees but we didn’t stray off the trail to check it out. We had a siesta at the river camp day 3 when the sun was high and rested for an hour in hammocks at the horse camp after supper and hiked straight out through the 3rd night.” Hope this helps.

  • Reply
    Chuck Emary
    September 18, 2018 at 6:15 pm

    Hi Taylor,
    Thanks for the quick reply. Good information!

  • Reply
    Grace
    October 22, 2018 at 11:55 pm

    Being in Cusco was one of the most wonderful experiences that has happened to me, and making the trek to Choquequirao was a complete challenge. Still, it’s something I would do again.

  • Reply
    Alex
    November 8, 2018 at 11:16 pm

    Hello,

    A friend and I only have 3 days but would love to do this trek. Is it possible to do this in 3 days if starting from Capuliyoc?

    Thanks!

    • Reply
      Taylor
      November 10, 2018 at 5:30 pm

      Hey Alex! It will be very tough, but it IS possible. We actually did it in 3 because our tent got soaked on the second night. If you can camp at Santa Rosa Alta both nights, it should be doable (maybe even leaving your bags there?). Let me know what you decide on!

      • Reply
        Alex
        November 10, 2018 at 9:24 pm

        Awesome, thank you!

    • Reply
      Walt
      November 10, 2018 at 9:25 pm

      Alex, I have hiked it twice in the past three months. It is possible if you are in good shape especially regarding the knees, and you start early. It gets hot around midday and stays hot till about 3:30pm. I met a young German girl on my first trip to Choque. that did it in two days. Be prepared for rain if you are thinking about doing it in Nov or Dec.

      • Reply
        Taylor
        November 13, 2018 at 2:13 pm

        Thanks for weighing in, Walt!

  • Reply
    HA
    November 20, 2018 at 9:30 pm

    Hello,
    Your post is very informative. I am doing this trek and finishing in Machu Picchu this coming December. How slippery is the trail since I know it is rainy season? I was thinking of just wearing my running shoes since I will get wet everyday anyway. I will be trekking solo. Do you think it is possible for a girl to do this by herself?
    Thanks!!!

    • Reply
      Taylor
      November 21, 2018 at 6:36 am

      Hey there. We also did the hike in December and had a huge rain one day. I did the hike in trail runners, but have to admit that a solid pair of boots would have really helped. The mud shouldn’t be a big problem, but there are steep declines, and you’ll feel it in your feet. As for doing it solo, I definitely think so! It’s a remote trail, but there’s only a single track to the ruins. There weren’t many people when we went in 2016, but because of increasing popularity, I can imagine that there will be more people at shared campsites now. Hope you enjoy your hike!

  • Reply
    Maggie
    December 31, 2018 at 5:03 pm

    Thank you for this information, we were looking to trek along the Salkantay trail to Machu Picchu, then back to Choquequirao, but after reading your description, we think we might trek along the Choquequirao trail as the return seems to be a bit of an unknown quantity. Are there any maps you would recommend us using?

    • Reply
      Taylor
      February 15, 2019 at 10:04 am

      Hey Maggie. I definitely recommend the hike in the Choquequirao > Machu Picchu direction rather than the reverse. Maps for this region are still pretty rough, but I’m working on some original maps as we speak! When are you going? Can send you one when it’s finished if it might help with your trip planning.

  • Reply
    Maggie
    February 15, 2019 at 11:20 am

    Hi Taylor, we fly out to Lima on 24th April. Thank you for your advice.

  • Reply
    Walt
    February 15, 2019 at 1:32 pm

    Hello Taylor, Nice to see your note. I am heading to Choque in a few weeks to see how the trail is in early March. I love that it is so close to where I live. While the Huayhuash is more majestic, the trek to Machu Picchu from Choque is a real challenge and delight also.

  • Reply
    Chuck Emary
    February 15, 2019 at 9:29 pm

    Hi Everyone,
    Working out details of a September trip to do this. Google Earth is an amazing way to see this. It really gives you some perspective. I was thinking about going in via Kiunalla instead of Cachora. Anyone have any idea if you can rent a burro out of there? Looks like a population of around 100 people. It looks like it would cut off a lot walking up the valley. Thanks in advance to anyone responding. Training like a madman for the trip as of now….

    Cheers All…
    Chuck

    • Reply
      Chuck
      February 15, 2019 at 11:09 pm

      I did a bunch more research – looks like that route would be class 4-5 and turns into a bush-whacking trip, so it’s out for the first trip….

  • Reply
    Bas Schuiling
    February 15, 2019 at 10:34 pm

    If going by donkey is your style, cachora is really the only way in plus it is rather easy from there. You wouldn’t save much going through kiunalla. Unless you are a real trailblazer and used to making fresh tracks, cachora is your only real option, outside of the machu-choque route. If you are reasonably fit (i.e. walk two flights of stairs without getting winded) choque is easy going with a donkey. I didn’t use a Donkey, did it solo full gear, 5 days, one full day on site and it was GREAT.

    • Reply
      Taylor
      March 3, 2019 at 11:13 pm

      Love the “two flights of stairs without getting winded” measure of fitness! Say, Bas. I’m just about to publish an eBook about the trek, and am looking for a few people who have done it to take a look. Would you be willing to help me out?

  • Reply
    Walt
    March 3, 2019 at 11:28 pm

    Hello Taylor, I love the RT Cachora Choque trek. I am heading there this coming Wednesday to do it for the 3rd time. If you want me to take a look at your eBook, I’d be glad to help. Warning, I have a lot of traveling planned for the next four weeks. What is your timeframe for getting feedback.

    • Reply
      Taylor
      March 4, 2019 at 3:01 pm

      Walt, that would be awesome! I already used some of your input re: the campsites. I’m hoping to have it published by 1 April. Should I email it over when it’s ready?

  • Reply
    Walt
    March 4, 2019 at 3:15 pm

    Yes. Did I mention in my write up to you, the killer bee nest on the backside of Choque heading down to the White River?

    • Reply
      Taylor
      March 10, 2019 at 12:49 pm

      Hmmm, I can’t remember if you did! Do you think it’s still there? Will have a PDF version by this evening hopefully. Send you a copy by email!

  • Reply
    Will
    March 8, 2019 at 12:17 am

    Hey guys,

    Was looking for something else and your blog ranked #1 for it! Great job! We are so happy that you did the hike yourself and wrote so nicely about it. Everything was on point! That was one of favorite hikes, as well as the easiest AND the most difficult at the same time. Also the most rewarding.

    I highly recommend this hike to everyone, follow these guys on IG and support them, they have a great blog!

  • Reply
    Hiking the beautiful Choquequirao – Green Mochila
    March 26, 2019 at 12:43 am

    […] least 4 days. Many travel blogs have written comprehensive guides about the hike (check it here and here), so I won’t bore our readers, but rather post our pictures of these beautiful and demanding few […]

  • Reply
    Hiking the beautiful Choquequirao – Green Mochila
    April 5, 2019 at 2:14 am

    […] Many travel blogs have written comprehensive guides about the hike (check it here and here), so I won’t bore our readers, but rather post our pictures of these beautiful and demanding few […]

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      April 8, 2019 at 11:21 am

      Thanks for sharing, guys! Glad you had such a good experience with the hike.

      • Reply
        Anthony
        April 9, 2019 at 11:09 pm

        Oh, we didn’t think our link would appear here directly as a comment. That’s classy! (Why twice, though?) We’ll post more links to your blog then 😉
        When an article is well written like this one is, of course we share it.
        Keep it up!
        Anthony from Green Mochila

        • Reply
          Taylor Record
          April 10, 2019 at 11:33 am

          Some kind of strange magic! I actually tried to comment on your blog post a couple of weeks ago and couldn’t post for some forgotten password… tracking that down now. Hope you guys are loving South America (even though you thought Chile was just alright ;)). Exploring Peru now?

  • Reply
    Teresa Burke
    June 1, 2019 at 4:24 am

    Hi! My daughter and I are thinking about doing the 4-day classic trek. What is the weather typically like in June? Also, is it fairly safe for a single female and single child to hike this? (She’s an adventurous kiddo and has backpacked with me many times in the Appalachian mountains, the adirondacks, and in Patagonia.) Thanks!!

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      June 10, 2019 at 3:34 pm

      Hi Teresa. Since you guys are traveling in the “busy season” (though this trek doesn’t have a true busy season) I wouldn’t worry! There should be a few other individuals/pairs at all the campsites, and most will have a camp host as well. The weather in June is about as good as it gets, with an average 1 day of rain and 67° / 33°. Would just tell you to be mindful of the mid-day sun as it can get very hot and there’s no tree cover. Have also heard the bugs are VERY pesky, so be sure to cover up as much as possible and bring repellant. Enjoy your trip!

  • Reply
    Jarrod J Sowa
    October 14, 2019 at 11:38 pm

    Hi- Awesome post! My family of four (two adults, with kids aged 13 and 11) are looking at trekking to Choquequirao then continuing onto Yanama and finishing at Huancacalle over 8-9 days late May 2020. We will be looking at getting a guide with mules and a horse. Has anyone done this route?

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      October 15, 2019 at 10:53 pm

      Hey Jarrod. Really glad it was useful! I haven’t personally hiked onto Huancacalle, but there’s more details on continuing via Yanama in our ebook. Anyone else hiked this route? Would also love to know what it’s like.

  • Reply
    Teresa
    October 16, 2019 at 2:32 am

    My 10 year old daughter and I did this solo this past summer. It’s an amazing hike that I highly recommend. Hiring mules will certainly make it much easier. Definitely cover up as the bugs are terrible. Bug repellant did not do much. A fantastic experience.

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      October 16, 2019 at 6:16 pm

      Good for her! I know I was still grumbling on hikes at 10.

  • Reply
    Bas
    October 16, 2019 at 12:21 pm

    I would seriously reconsider doing the Choquequirao-Yanama-Huancalle route with young children. Might be they are really big/sturdy kids for their age, but the hike is, even with mules and guides (multiple) a heavy version.
    You might consider adopting a more star like route configuration.
    If how ever you do decide to go for the route in you current configuration I’d turn it around, as Choquequirao is (IMHO) the most untouched (yet) and offers more room to explore. (Spend a whole day on site, stay until late on the higher terrace of Place Principal for sunsets from heaven). Take at least a day for Huancacalle to, the Manco Inka is quite a hike on it’s own. Also being the hardcore hikers you are, do not forget Vilacabamba, it’s a neat place!
    Also late may you could have somewhat more inclement weather. Even though the tables state Peru being dry then.

  • Reply
    Tom
    October 22, 2019 at 2:08 pm

    Hi guys! We (mainly) used your guide to do ‘the classic route’ September 21st to 24th 2019, and it was one of the best things we did in Peru!
    That said, we did experience a few changes compared to the descriptions we’ve read here and on other blogs. Facilities at Playa Rosalina were very poor. There was no one there, and no running water (dirty bathrooms). Santa Rosa Baja was quite lively, some guides were gathered here and there was a shop that was selling drinks. Santa Rosa Alta on the other hand seemed almost abandoned. The bathroom facilities were locked and there was no one here to help us. We considered our fitness average, however this trek was quite hard for us. We carried about 10-15 kg each, which felt like way to much.

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      October 29, 2019 at 12:31 am

      Hey Tom. First of all, love hearing from someone after the trek! Thanks for writing. As for campsites, that’s definitely helpful information. Anything else in the post appear out of date to you?

  • Reply
    Mike
    November 7, 2019 at 9:16 pm

    Taylor, Finished the Classic Route to Choque 2 days ago – my 13 yo boy and I. Your online guide is spot on and was worth the money – eased my anxiety and saved a day or two. Since I have more money than time and patience we rented a car in Cuzco, went unguided and without mules. Early a.m. starts/ resupplied at camp sites/ 2 nights at the only hotel in Marampata allowed us to travel pretty light and therefore fast which relative on this trail. Had a full day at Choquequirao. As of November 2019 your campsite info is spot on. Thanks, Mike

    • Reply
      Taylor Record
      November 7, 2019 at 10:05 pm

      Hey Mike. First of all, it makes me so happy to hear that! Really appreciate you taking the time to comment and say so. Anything that you noticed has changed so I can keep the guide updated? Congrats on finishing, and extra impressed by your 13-year-old. I’m almost certain I would have complained the whole way at that age!

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