Short Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, 2-Day Trek

Short Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, 2-Day TrekMaximum Altitude,792ft/2700m

Short Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, 2-Day TrekDistance6.3 miles/10km

Short Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, 2-Day TrekGroup size8 People max

Trek difficulty

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The Short Inca trail  is one of the most beautiful trek to Machu Picchu that was designed for those who are travelling with limited time or don’t desire to hike the whole length of the Inca trail. With beautiful scenery, a wide variety vegetation, diversity of wild life on exhibition and a visit  to the short Inca trail’s most outstanding site (Wiñay Wayna), you get to admire the all the best bits of the Inca trail summarized  into a one day hike.

By hiking the 2 day Inca trail you get to experience Machu Picchu in two phenomenal ways. On day one, you have the chance to hike on the ancient stone paved trail visiting many different Inca ruins and experience the spectacular bird’s eye view of Machu Picchu itself from the world-renowned Sun Gate (Inti Punku). During the second day, you will actually visit the ancient sacred site where you will receive a tour by one of our professional guides. We also try to ensure that you have at least a couple of hours to explore the city on your own, but this all depends on the time of your arrival and the length of your tour.

Definitely  along the 2 day Inca trail you can see the snow-topped mountain ranges, waterfalls, and the river far down below, this should be on everyone’s bucket list.

In order to hike the Short Inca Trail, you must have a permit which we will obtain for you. The Peruvian government limits the amount of permits issued to only 250 people per day so as to ensure your safety and to keep the trail in good condition. Furthermore, everyone must have a permit . Consequently, the permits run out very quickly.

Starting altitude – 6900ft / 2100m, Highest altitude – 8,792ft / 2700m, Walking distance – 6.3 miles / 10km, Overall difficulty – Easy to moderate


Short Inca Trail Machu Picchu – Itinerary

DAY 1: Cusco – Machu Picchu

Early in the morning, we are going to meet you at your hotel and take you to the train station in our minivan. Once there, we will take whichever train we had previously booked—the 6:10 or the 7:45 train— from Ollantaytambo. This scenic route follows the Sacred Valley and the Urubamba River until we get to the 104th km mark located 2,000m (6,561ft) above sea level which is the starting point of the Inca Trail.

We will begin the 2 day Inca trail by visiting the ruins of Chachabambaa gorgeous Incan site composed of ancient stone-carved walls. Next, we will travel for about 3 hours (4km) across a mountain completely covered by lush vegetation with incredible views of mountian glaciers and the turbulent waters of the Urubamba River. Once we finish this hike, we will arrive to Wiñay Waynaan awe-inspiring Inca ruin located at 2,700m / 8,858ft in the cloud forest. This mysterious site features one of the most beautiful buildings made by the Incas, and it is a perfect illustration of one of the agricultural laboratories used during the Inca empire. It contains numerous terraces where the Incas used to grow all sorts of plants and vegetables, including the popular coca leaf.

After exploring Wiñay Wayna, we will continue walking on the last portion of the beautiful Classic Inca Trail until Inti Punku or the “Sun Gate”. It is at this point where hikers get to see the most amazing views Machu Picchu has to offer.  Fun fact: during the summer solstice, the sunlight passes through the Sun Gate, and it shines through the window of Machu Picchu’s Sun temple with uncanny precision. This is one of the most important and incredible phenomenons of the Incan empire; it also attributes to why the Sun Gate has become such a popular attraction for travelers.

After this, it is only an hour descent to Machu Picchu (2400m / 7873ft). We’ll arrive at just the perfect time to enjoy the amazing sunset without having to deal with large crowds. Afterwards, we will catch a bus down to the town of Aguas Calientes where our accommodations will be at a nice 3-star hotel.

Aguas Calientes is a beautiful city that acts as a gateway to Machu Picchu. Most tourists enjoy lunch or dinner at any of the various restaurants. If you walk around whether it is during the day or at night, you will not be able to help but notice the local extravagance of the architecture of the city along with its bustling night-life.  The name Aguas Calientes means «hot waters» which is quite befitting because it is here where you can soak in the healing natural hot springs of Peru. To make things even better, the springs are only a 10 minute walk from the heart of the city. It is so close that you wouldn’t even need your guide.

DAY 2: Machu Picchu – Cusco

After a big breakfast in the hotel, it is only a 20-minute bus ride to the Sacred City (Machu Picchu). We will travel through the mountainous rainforest featuring incredible views of the lush green and misty cloud forest Macchu Picchu. Once we arrive to the gate, your tour guide will offer you a wonderful guided tour through the most important temples and palaces of this beautiful Inca site. After the guided tour, you will have free time to explore the ruins on your own.  Notably, if you have bought a permit to climb Huayna Picchu or the Machu Picchu montana, you will begin your next exciting adventure here. After enjoying this amazing monument, you have to catch the bus back to Aguas Calientes followed by the train back to Cusco. The train usually departs in the afternoon to Ollantaytambo.


What is included?

  • Pick up  and transfer from the Airport to the hotel
  • Professional English – Speaking Tour Guide
  • Breafing the night before you go on the trek
  • Pick-up from your Hotel
  • Train expedition class to Km104
  • Train from Aguas calientes to Ollantaytambo (Vistadome class)
  • Private van to Cusco and drop off in your hotel
  • Boxed Lunch on the first day
  • Dinner in one of the most beautiful restaurants (we honor food restrictions)
  • I night hotel at a 3 stars Hotel in Aguas Calientes ( Terraza de Luna, santuario, La Cabaña or some other similar depending on the availability)
  • Oxygen tank for emergencies.
  • First aid kit for emergencies.
  • Permits to the Inca Trail and Machu Picchu ruins.
  • Bus tickets from Machu Picchu – Aguas Caliente).

What’s Not Included?

  • Breakfast on Day 1 and lunch and dinner on Day 2
  • Entrance fee to Huayna Picchu Mountain
  • Entrance fee to Machu Pichu Mountain
  • Travel Insurance – you are strongly recommended to take out travel insurance for the duration of your trip.
  • Hiking poles
  • Gratitude


Short Inca Trail – Price

We warmly welcomes you, and we really want to make sure that you have the best experience on the Short Inca Trail hike. Our treks can be during any date of the year as long as there are permits available. Permits are only needed for your start date.

Group Service Price: $505 USD Per Person

A group service means that other hikers are able to join you. Your group will have varying hiking and fitness abilities. Our Professional Tour Guides are experts on how to keep the group moving and happy no matter how fast you go.

Private Tour Service is also available and is priced by party size.

Go on the most amazing adventure with your friends or loved ones by route of the alluring Inca Trail 2 days! It is the best way to experience all of Machu Picchu.  Our private tours can be any size, and we all will do our best to make this the most positively unforgettable experience of a lifetime.

  • 2 Hikers   $550 USD per person
  • 3 Hikers   $535 USD per person
  • 4 Hikers   $510 USD per person
  • 5 Hikers   $485 USD  per person
  • 6 hikers   $460 USD per person
  • 7+ Hikers $430 USD per person

Student discount: $20 per student. To aply to student discount you shoud follow the below govenment requirements

Students from 18 to 25 years old get discount of $20

Students from 12 to 17 years old, they get discount of $20.

Children from under 11 years all they get discount of $20.

The Ministry of Culture has changed its regulations regarding student discounts for entrances to Machu Picchu and Inca Trail permits. For anyone wishing to obtain a student discount, the following requirements must be met: (1.- Must be under 25 years of age  2.- Must have a valid institutional student card with  A.- Photograph B.- Student´s full name C.- Expiry date in 2019 that includes the date of reservation and the date of visit to Machu Picchu). Please note ISIC cards or any alternative documents proving student status will not be accepted. Unfortunately, if you fail to meet any of the above criteria we will not be able to offer the student discount.

Some considerations

For example, if you book your trek at the age of 17 but, you turn 18 before you start your trek, you do not qualify for a student discount.

Please send all documents to


Upgrades & Rentals

  • A set of hiking poles USD10
  • Vistadome train (Two-Ways): $65 USD per person
  • Casa Andina Hotel: $45 USD per person if sharing a room ($110 USD for a single)
  • El Mapi Hotel: $45+ USD per person if sharing a room ($110+ USD for a single)

Huayna Picchu Mountain
Huayna Picchu, is a stunning mountain that sits directly behind Machu Picchu, this is the infamous sugar-loaf mountain which sits at an elevation of 2,720m and 300m above the Machu Picchu Inca Citadel.
There are some archaeological remains as the Moon Temple and other precincts that are interconnected with authentic trails, steps, tunnels and natural formatted caves which made the view more interesting, without any doubt, Huayna Picchu mountain can be the highlight of your trip to Machu Picchu.
The last stretch to get the summit is very steep, narrow, and in some parts, you are required to use your hands for balance. There are some stone ladders to climb up the cliff face along the way. if you have problems with the heights this may not be the hike for you. The summit itself is not flat but is instead rocky, therefore when the crowd picks up it can be a bit difficult to move around.

  • Difficulty – Due to the complexity and gradient of the trail, the hike is rather challenging.
  • Duration – The round trip can take between 1.5 to 2 hours in average.
  • Elevation – The mountain’s summit sits at 2,693masl, while the climb itself is 353m.

Huayna Picchu mountain can be climbed in 2 different sessions:

  • The first session: from 7am to 8am
  • The second session: from 10am to 11am

Machu Picchu Mountain
The climb up to Machu Picchu mountain is nearly twice as high as Huayna Picchu but has a more gradual ascent profile up to its summit at 1,850 feet (~620m) above the city ruins (3,051m above sea level).
The panoramic views are from another world. The Inca ruins, Huayna Picchu and Putucusi Mountains look so small behind the giant row of mountains that it makes you wonder if it is true what you are seeing. You will be astonished!
The awe-inspiring view is still composed by a bright blue sky, clouds and the Urubamba River snaking around colossal mountains covered with lush vegetation. What a gift from our mother nature!

  • Difficulty – Due to the complexity and gradient of the trail, the hike is rather challenging.
  • Duration – The round trip can take between 2.5 to 3 hours in average.
  • Elevation – The mountain’s summit sits at 3,000masl, while the climb itself is 600m.

Machu Picchu mountain can be climbed in 2 different sessions:

  • The first session: from 7am to 8am
  • The second session: from 9am to 10am

Choose one of your favorite free tours

If you are traveling in Peru with your family or friends and there are 4 or more people in your group, then you automatically get one of our tours for free. You may pick whichever one you like from the list below. Please note that we do not include the entrance fees for these, but we do include the transportation and a professional tour guide.

  • Sacred Valley Tour
  • Cusco City Tour

Important Info

Important Information

We know planning an adventure vacation is no small decision, so we’re here to make the process as easy as possible for you. We’ve been doing this for quite a while, so we’ve got the answers to everything you need to know!

Upon your arrival in Cusco City
You will be welcomed by one of our transfers at Cusco airport and then you will be transferred into your hotel. Find out your transfer in Cusco airport holding our Inka trail Explorer. Please you should provide us your flight schedule before you leave home.

The briefing
Your guide will meet you in your hotel 1 or 2 days prior you start the trek. your guide will explain everything concerning the trek in detail. This includes the 2-days Inca trail schedule and a few tips on how to make the Short inca trail easier. You also will receive a small duffel bag which is meant to contain all of your personal belongings and it will be sent by train to the hotel where you will stay after the trek.

Can I leave my Suitcase in your storage?
Usually most of the hotels in Cusco city offers a free storage but, definitely you can leave your suitcase in our storage while you go on trek or tour, we offer a free storage.

How big needs to be my daypack?

You only need to bring a small daypack (25 to 30 Lts max). Big enough to pack you rain gear, snack, water, camera, fleece jacket and some small items that you might need for the day trek.

How do I Pay my final Balance?
Your final balance should be paid in cash and it can be done in American dollars or in the local currency (Peruvian soles). We kindly request pay your final balance at least 24 hours prior you start the trek. You also can pay your balance via PayPal 10 days prior you start the trek. To pay your final balance via PayPal, you need to log into your PayPal account using our e-mail address –

Can I cancel my trip or change my departure date?
As soon as you make your confirmation by paying your deposit we proceed to purchase the Inca trail permits, Machu Picchu tickets and train tickets. According the government regulations, the Inca trail and Machu Picchu permits or tickets cannot be canceled, changed of date or transferred into other traveler and unfortunately there is not a refund.

Do I need my Original passport when I travel into Peru?
Very important to bring the original passport with you. If you are a foreigner, you need a passport to enter Machu Picchu. Not just any passport. It has to be the passport you used to book your trip in Peru or buy your entry tickets to different attractions in Cusco – Peru.
If you renew your passport after you booked your trip in Peru, you must travel with both the old and the new passports. You also can send us via e-mail a copy of your new and old passports and we will be able to upgrade your new passport information.

How fit do I need to be to hike these trails?
As long as you enjoy hiking, you’ll love these trails – you’ll be hiking about eight miles a day, but there’s no rush, you can take it at your own pace. In fact, the slower the better I say, as that way you get plenty of time not only to enjoy your surroundings, but let your body acclimatize to the altitude as well.
We recommend doing plenty of exercise before you leave home, as the fitter you are, the more you’ll enjoy your hike. We suggest you try to go for a short walks or running 2-3 times a week. If you have access to some walking trails that go over hills then go and explore, Hit the gym if you can’t do outdoor activities.
That said our trips are designed for regular active people, so you don’t need to be a triathlete or anything – though if you are you won’t be bored!

What if I need a special diet?
We cater all the food restrictions you might have; we work with responsable retaurants and cooks who will take care of you. You also can specify your particular requirements when you fill up our booking form.

  • Vegan (no meat or animal products)
  • Vegetarian (no meat products)
  • Fishatarian (vegetarian, and eat fish)
  • No red meat (eat chicken & fish)
  • Gluten intolerant (no wheat, rye, barley or oats)
  • Lactose intolerant (no dairy products)

Do you recommend buying travel insurance?
You should have full travel insurance cover – please be aware that some insurance companies require insurance to be purchased within 7 days of deposit payment. It is imperative for you to have medical cover and emergency repatriation and we strongly recommend a comprehensive travel insurance policy that also includes trip cancellation and other travel mishaps (e.g. flight cancellations or delays, trip interruption, theft or loss of luggage and personal effects).

Packing List

2-Day Inca Trail: Packing List

Daypacks can be any size for hiking the Short Inca Trail, but we always recommend bringing a small one. Inside Machu Picchu, bags larger than 25-L will not be allowed inside. If it is larger, you will need to store it outside the citadel gate.

  • Valid Passport
  • GREEN ISIC card (if you are booking as a student)
  • Immigration Card (given on the plane as you fly to Peru)
  • Water reservoir like Camelbaks is encouraged (You will need at least 2-3 liters.)
  • Comfortable hiking boots with ankle support
  • Water
  • Bugspray
  • Sunspray
  • Sunhat
  • Rain gear
  • Fleece jacket
  • Camera
  • Hand-sanitizer
  • First-aid kit: band-aids, moleskin, etc.
  • Toilet paper and a small plastic bag for waste
  • Extra Money for Souvenirs, Drinks & Tips
  • Face-moisturizer
  • Wet wipes
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste


2 Day Inca trail Machu Picchu Trek: Booking

How to Book

It’s always better to contact us directly and confirm with our team before you book. Once you are ready, please fill in our Booking Form and pay the Deposit of $200 USD per person. Our office will email you back that day with your confirmation. We always send out confirmations, so if you don’t hear from us, check your spam or contact our office and we will resend them.
We are so excited to take you on the 2 day Inca trail and thank you for choosing us and traveling with us in Cusco – Peru.

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Trekkers details: Name as written on passport, Passport Number, Date of Birth and Nationality. Please list Full Names (as written on passport), Passport Number, Nationality, Dates of Birth and Gender for all in your party

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