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Inca Trail Availability & Permits

The Inca Trail is one of the most popular hikes in the world and as such availability is limited. Inca Trail availability is affected by a number of factors, including the time of year, the number of people in your group, and the number of spaces regulated by the Peruvian state.

Only 500 trekking permits are issued per day for Inca Trail treks in 2024; Inca Trail Permits are also required for your travel team such as porters, cooks, and guides; therefore, booking the Inca Trail in advance is essential. because there are multiple needs, to take care of, there is no set amount of time in advance that you must book and guarantee an Inca Trail to Machu Picchu entrance.

The best time to hike Inca Trail Trek is the dry season, which runs from May to September. It is also the busiest time of the year, so it is important to book your trip as far in advance as possible.

Why Choose Us?

Cusco Journeys is the number one tour operator for treks and tours to Machu Picchu and all-around Peru. Located in Cusco, we pride ourselves on our dedication to our clients, creating unique adventures and tailor-made tours all led by the most professional guides. 

We are lucky to have the best clients, who love to share their experiences and have helped us maintain the quality certificate on TripAdvisor for 6 years with more than double the positive experiences of any other company.

Check The Inca Trail Availability & Permits 2024 – 2024 For The 1, 2, 4, 6 Days

The Availability mentioned below is for all Inca trail treks to Machu Picchu, you can choose the best date that fits in your traveling schedule since we have daily departures, we only need two people as a minimum to depart and if you are single traveler contact us and we will be able to accommodate you with one of our set groups.

1

CHECK INCA TRAIL AVAILABILITY

Make sure the government still has permits available fou your start date.

2

CHECK WITH US

Confirm Inca Trail Availability with our sales team via chat, email, or phone that your start date is available.

3

FINALIZE EARLY

Permits sell out months in. advance; book early!

How Do I Get an Inca Trail Permit?

  • Check the calendar below for availability, then click the “book now” button to get started.
  • Fill out your personal information and select the type of service and number of passengers for your trip.
  • You can also add extra services such as Huayna Picchu tickets, Machu Picchu Mountain tickets, and the ability to upgrade your train tickets.
  • Review and accept our service policies before submitting the form; after submitting the form, you will have the option to pay the 40% per person via PayPal and others payment options.
  • Our commercial department will send you an email confirming your reservation after you make it.

If you’re planning on hiking the Inca Trail, it’s important to have a good map. There are plenty of resources available online and in stores, but we’ve found that the best way to get a feel for the trail is to use an Inca Trail hikers map.

This map was created by an Cusco Journeys hiker who has completed the trail and provides detailed information on the different sections of the trail. It also includes recommendations on where to stop along the way and what to see.

Inca Trail to Machu Picchu Map

We’ve detailed our own Inca Trail plan below, and this is the type of itinerary you may expect (note that this only applies to the days spent hiking, not the days spent traveling to/from Cusco and Ollantaytambo).

Day 1: In the morning, go from Ollantaytambo to km.82 and climb to the campground.

  • Distance: Approx. 8.7 miles/ 14 km
  • Elevation: 3,300 metres/10.829 ft
  • Difficulty: Moderate day.

Day 2: Early start to hike through cloud forest, up to Dead Woman’s Pass, and back down.

  • Distance: Approx. 9.94 miles/ 16 km
  • Elevation: 4,215 metres / 13.829 ft
  • Difficulty: Challenging day.

Day 3: Early rise to hike the most photogenic section of the Trail.

  • Distance: Approx. 5.59 miles/ 9 km
  • Elevation: 3,650 metres / 11.975 ft
  • Difficulty: Moderate day.

Day 4: Early morning (3 a.m.) departure to reach the entry checkpoint and hike for 1-2 hours to the Sun Gate and Machu Picchu.

  • Distance: Approx. 3.11 miles/ 5 km
  • Elevation: 2,720 metres / 8.924 ft
  • Difficulty: Moderate day.

HEALTH + SAFETY ON THE INCA TRAIL

Satellite Phones

Our top goal is your safety, so we’ve invested in dependable satellite phones, which are one of the most vital instruments for any operator running treks into the Andes. This means that every guide on one of our treks will have a fully charged satellite phone, which our clients can use at any time.

Medical Procedures and First Aid

Every Cusco Journeys guide is equipped with an oximeter and will monitor your condition as you ascend in elevation.

WHY CHOOSE CUSCO JOURNEYS?

Our Guides

Our Cooks

Our Porters

Passport Requirements

Please know that if you are booking with a passport that is set to expire within 06 months of your planned entry date to Peru, you will be required to renew your passport before coming to Peru. Peru authorities will not grant you entry to the country otherwise.

If you are booking your trek with us, and this is your case, please know you will be able to book with us to secure your Inka Trail permits and tickets to Machu Picchu. However, you will be required to renew your passport and update your passport details with us prior to your trip to Peru. Failure to do so may result in the forfeiture of your reserved permits, and tickets to Machu Picchu.

INCA TRAIL FAQS FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS FOR YOUR NEXT ADVENTURE

Is The Inca trail Worth It?

We can say that the Inca Trail is 100% worth it! It’s one of the best treks in the world, according to National Geographic and many other sources. On this amazing route, you get to:

  • Retrace ancient steps along a path that’s hundreds of years old.
  • Visit many archaeological sites that you only get to see on this route.
  • Learn a great deal about the fascinating ancient culture of the Incas.
  • Hike through some of the most beautiful landscapes in the Andean mountain range.
  • Discover unique flora and fauna.
  • Sleep in the arms of Mother Nature in the middle of the Andes.
  • Enter Machu Picchu through the Sun Gate—only possible on this route.
  • Explore one of the New Seven Wonders of the World—Machu Picchu.

Is the Inca Trail Difficult?

Cusco Journeys rates the Inca Trail as a moderately difficult trek. This is because you’ll be hiking at high altitudes and along tough uphill climbs at some points. However, other days aren’t so challenging, which is why the overall difficulty rating is moderate.

How Far in Advance Should I Book the Inca Trail?

We recommend you book your Inca Trail place as early as possible. Most days sell out at least 3 months in advance for the low season (Nov–Mar) and then 6 months in advance for the high season (Apr–Oct).

Note: Even if you book before these suggested periods, we cannot guarantee your place on the trail as there’s no knowing exactly when they’ll sell out.

Do I Need to Carry My Own Luggage on the Inca Trail?

No. You don’t need to carry your trekking backpack or the duffel bag we provide you with. We have a team of porters who carry these for you. However, they go at a much faster pace, so you’ll need to carry a small backpack with the supplies you need during the day, like water, snacks, a camera, etc

Can I Leave My Luggage at the Cusco Journeys Office?

Yes, of course. While you go on your trek, you can leave your extra luggage with us in our office where it will be safe and secure until you return.

You can bring it with you when you attend the briefing, or you can bring it on the morning of the trek and our driver will bring it back to our offices. Speak to your guide and Cusco Journeys representative at the briefing to organize for it to be dropped off at your hotel for your return.

Alternatively, don’t hesitate to ask your hotel if they can keep it for you. Most will have a locked storage room and this might be easier for you if you’re returning to the same one.

How Many Inca Trail Routes Are There?

There are four Inca Trail Treks to choose from. These are known as:

  • The Salkantay & Inca Trail (6 Days)
  • The Ancascocha & Inca Trail (6 Days)
  • The Classic Inca Trail (4 Days)
  • The 2 Day Inca Trail (2 Days)
  • The One Day Inca Trail (1 Day)

How Many People Are Allowed on the Inca Trail Every Day?

With The Inca Trail being one of the most popular treks worldwide, you might be worried about large crowds. You don’t need to worry.

The Peruvian government wants to preserve the trail as much as possible, and they’ve put a limit to the number of trekkers who can hike each day. Only 500 people can enter the trail a day.

In February, the Inca Trail is closed for cleaning and maintenance.

How Many People Will Be in My Group?

The maximum number of people in a group on our treks is 10. However, we can head out with a minimum of 2. It usually depends on the time of year and whether it’s high or low season.

How Far Do We Walk Each Day?

On average, you’ll walk around 6 or 7 hours a day along the Classic Inca Trail. If you want to take a closer look at each day in detail, you can check out the itinerary on the Cusco Journeys website. Below is a quick overview of the distance you’ll cover each day:

  • Day 1: 14 km / 8.7 m
  • Day 2: 16 km / 9.94 m
  • Day 3: 9 km / 5.59 m
  • Day 4: 5 km / 3.11 m

Where Will We Sleep on the Inca Trail?

On the Inca Trail, we’ll set up tents every day at the campsite for you to sleep in.

How Much Does the Inca Trail Cost?

The cost of the Inca Trail may vary depending on who you travel with. With Cusco Journeys, we have three options for hiking the Inca Trail. The prices per person for a group tour are as follows:

  • ONE DAY INCA TRAIL — $400 USD
  • SHORT INCA TRAIL 2 DAYS — $500 USD
  • CLASSIC INCA TRAIL 4 DAYS — $650 USD
  • PRIVATE INCA TRAIL 4 DAYS — $1000 USD
  • SALKANTAY AND INCA TRAIL 7 DAYS — $1100 USD

Can I Rent Equipment for the Inca Trail?

On all of our routes, we provide you with the accommodation—in this case tents—and a sleeping mat. But, if you need to hire other pieces of equipment, we do have some available.

Every item we use is of the highest-quality and from the best brands around. There are some pieces you can rent in advance or at the briefing. These are:

  • A sleeping bag for -15°C and a sleeping bag liner.
  • Thermarest luxury air mattress.
  • Adjustable walking sticks.

If you already own these items, you’re able to take them on the trek. You’ll just need to keep the weight restrictions in mind.

How Can I Prepare Physically for the Trek?

The Inca Trail is moderately challenging and you’ll be hiking up to some high altitudes. Trekking up to Dead Woman’s Pass (4,215 m / 13,829 ft) is the most difficult part of the trek. This day you’ll also walk 16 km and for 10 hours.

For this reason, we suggest you do plenty of physical preparation to enjoy the trek as much as you can and so it doesn’t pose too many challenges. Check out these prep tips for the Inca Trail.

  • Do plenty of cardiovascular exercise while you’re at home. Include lots of hikes and ensure they’re over varied terrain and a few days.
  • Eat a well-balanced diet to give your body all the right nutrients and energy it needs. While you’re on the trail, we’ll be giving you highly nutritious meals.
  • Make sure you get to Cusco 2–3 days before your trek begins to allow you to acclimate. Otherwise, you have a higher risk of getting altitude sickness, which could ruin your trek.
  • This is exactly physical prep, but you must use worn-in hiking boots. New ones can cause blisters and a lot of pain.

Is Water Included on the Trip?

Yes. You’ll need to take water for the first morning, but after this, we’ll give you water at every meal. The water we provide is clean and safe to consume.

We recommend you take a bottle you can refill or a Camelbak. Plastic bottles aren’t a good idea as they can ruin the route and we believe in sustainable tourism.

What Is the Food Like on the Inca Trail?

The food is often a highlight of the trip for many hikers. Every single one of our chefs is professionally trained and they do an incredible job of cooking some delicious meals in the middle of the mountains.

We know that nutrition is extremely important on the trek as you’ll be putting in a lot of physical effort and need plenty of energy. For this reason, we’ve worked closely with trained chefs and expert nutritionists to put the best menu possible together for the Inca Trail.

At each meal, you’ll find an array of dishes for you to choose what you want to eat. We use fresh, local ingredients to make some traditional foods that’ll blow you away.

If you suffer from allergies or eat a special diet, just let us know at the briefing or when you book and we’ll ensure you eat as well as everyone else.

Not only do you get these outstanding meals; we also give you a cloth bag and provide you with snacks each morning. You can eat these at any stage in the day when you need an energy boost. You also get “tea time” every afternoon with plenty of drinks and snacks before dinner

You definitely won’t be going hungry when you join Cusco Journeys on the Inca Trail.

Do I Need to Bring Extra Money for the Trek?

Yes. We always recommend you take extra money in case of an emergency. You’ll also need some in Aguas Calientes if you want to enjoy the hot springs and for your last lunch before heading back to Cusco.

Do I Need a Permit for the Inca Trail?

Yes. For the Inca Trail you need to reserve a special permit. Be aware that this needs to be done well in advance. The trek sells out months beforehand and there are only 500 places a day on the route.

Can I Do the Trek with Kids

Yes. If you’d like to enjoy the Inca Trail with your children, it’s definitely possible. We recommend they’re at least 8 years old and in excellent physical condition. We don’t recommend you travel with children on the trail if they aren’t accustomed to regular hiking and lots of physical exertion.

Will I Have Wifi During the Trek?

No. Along the Inca Trail, you won’t find anywhere with WiFi. The only place you’ll have internet access is if you visit a restaurant with WiFi in Aguas Calientes when you come down from Machu Picchu.

Will I Be Able to Charge My Devices During the Trek?

No. There’s nowhere to charge your electronics along the Inca Trail. We highly recommend taking a powerbank to keep your camera and/or phone charged to take some amazing photos.

Will I Have Access to Bathrooms Along the Trek?

Yes. Cusco Journeys takes portable trekking toilets with them along the way and you’ll also find very simple and rustic bathrooms at the campsites. You’ll need to make sure you take toilet paper in case there isn’t any.

Will I Be Able to Have a Shower During the Trek?

No. Along the Inca Trail, there are no showers, so you’ll have to wait until you get back to Cusco.

Can I Rent Horses During the Trek?

No. On the Inca Trail, there isn’t the option of hiring an extra horse.