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Cusco Journeys

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Rainbow Mountain Vinicunca vs Palcoyo Rainbow Mountain

rainbow mountain

Rainbow Mountain Vinicunca vs Palcoyo Rainbow Mountain – Peru’s Rainbow Mountain, Vinicunca, has grown in popularity since discovered for tourism in 2015. Though still a very new travel destination, hundreds of people have already flocked to witness the array of colors first-hand, and almost every tour agency in Cusco offers one-day trips. However, what most people don’t know is that there are various Rainbow Mountains located in Valle Rojo, or Red Valley, and trips to a second Rainbow Mountain, Palcoyo, have begun to take place.

Is Vinicunca the only mountain of 7 colors?

rainbow mountain


The most popular mountain without a doubt is Vinicunca but it is not the only Rainbow mountain, during this year more and more local people are finding and promoting their new attractions and Rainbow mountains are the most popular ones.

The formation of the Andes in this zone is almost the same, that is why some of the mountains have the same color, their different colors are due to the minerals of their composition.

Why choose the alternative Palcoyo Rainbow Mountain?

palcoyo mountain

Even when Vinicunca is the most popular one, it is not the most attractive one. Especially for the number of people that visit this mountain, they are around 3000 people per day at the same time climbing up the mountain. So the only reason why a lot of people go there is that is cheaper for the local travel companies.

The other big difference between both mountains is in the walking distance from the parking spaces to the attraction itself, in the case of Palcoyo Rainbow Mountain it is just one hour and 20 minutes and actually you already can see one of the mountains in the parking space.

In the case of Vinicunca, the passengers have to walk 1 hours, all the way climbing up until the top of the mountain.

Here are the biggest differences between both destinations:

Rainbow Mountain Vinicunca vs Palcoyo Rainbow Mountain


  • Location: Huallatacunca Mountain is located in Palcoyo Community, Checacupe District, around 3 hours by bus from Cusco.
  • Altitude: 4990 meters above sea level (16,390 feet).
  • Pick up Time for the tour: Between 05:30 am to 06:00 am.
  • Distance in Bus: 3 hours and 30 minutes.
  • Walking Time: 1 hour and 20 minutes round trip (from the parking to the mountains).
  • Things to see: 3 colorful rainbow mountains and one stone forest.
  • The number of people: The number of people who visit Palcoyo is still limited, around 100 people per day visit this destination.


  • LocationVinincunca Mountain is located in Cusipata District around 2 hours and 30 minutes by bus from Cusco.
  • Altitude: 5100 meters above sea level.
  • Pick up Time: between 05:00 am to 05:30 am.
  • Distance in Bus: 2 hours and 30 minutes (including breakfast and lunch).
  • Walking Time: 2 hours round trip (from the parking to the mountains).
  • Things to see: One colorful rainbow mountain.
  • The number of people: The number of people who visit this destination is big, around 3000 people visit the place per day.

Now that you know your options, I hope you are better able to make an informed decision about the Rainbow Mountain that is right for you.

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