Cusco to Huchuy Qosqo

1 days – Private Services

Cusco to Huchuy Qosqo

1 day – Private Services

Huchuy Qosqo Treks

Private Services

Luxury Services

Special Interest Treks

Huchuy Qosqo

Huchuy Qosqo is an Inca archeological settlement located 50 km north of the city of Cusco, at an elevation of 3600 masl (11,808 ft). The Quechua name translates into “Little Cusco” and it is said to have been built and occupied around the years 1000-1400, having been the property of the eighth Inca or governing king, Viracocha ca.1400, according to Spanish chronicles. The place was a royal property in the countryside, modelled after the Inca capital of Cusco – hence its name.

The site is composed of buildings and remains in both adobe and stone. It features walls, terraces, an 800m water irrigation canal made of stone, water reservoirs, and also several scattered buildings including warehouses or “qolqas” in which the Inca dwellers kept food such as dry meat, maize, potatoes, quinoa and beans, having their own particular refrigeration system still appreciated today.

Huchuy Qosqo offers phenomenal views over the Sacred Valley: the site stands on a terrace, overlooking the town of Lamay below as well as the surrounding mountain range, with gorgeous snow-capped peaks such as the perfectly-triangled Verónica, San Juan, Chicón and Pitusiray. Huchuy Qosqo is a stunning yet also lesser visited site.

About this Trek

A fantastic full-day hike in the surroundings of Cusco, departing from near Chinchero, following uphill towards a mild mountain pass, crossing smaller archaeological sites to then descend through a picturesque canyon to Huchuy Qosqo. Great local flora and fauna along the way, and stunning views over the surrounding landscape and mountain ranges, as well as over the Sacred Valley of the Incas from Huchuy Qosqo itself.

Enigma’s experienced trekking guides enrich the hikes with their knowledge and sharing, covering diverse topics such as Inca history, archaeology, architecture, social structure, economy, politics, astronomy, and fascinating traditions and beliefs.

Our Insight

A fabulous route providing a real feeling of what it is to walk in the Andean countryside close to Cusco and the Sacred Valley. A great blend of history, archaeology, nature, and of course stunning views and lots of peace, as we hardly find anyone en-route. The way down to Lamay is pretty steep and can be tricky for hikers suffering from knee pain, so make sure to take your time and eventually bring along walking sticks to ease the descent. A genuine hike around the corner from Cusco to get a real taste of Peru.


We leave Cusco at 7:00am in a private transport that takes us to Chinchero to then follow on to Tauca, a small Andean community that is the starting point of our trek. We start hiking uphill amidst a beautiful mountain scenery with presence of llamas, alpacas and lovely views of the Piuray Lagoon until we reach the only mountain pass of this program at 4500m/14760ft (2h). We then start descending along a restored Inca Trail for approximately one hour towards the small Andean community of Pukamarca (4010m/13153ft). From there, we walk downhill towards the Leon Punku ravine, where we find remains of an Inca bridge and trail. This canyon boasts geological formations surrounded by majestic rocks and boulders that direct the river to Huchuy Qosqo at 3600m/11808ft, where we arrive by early afternoon. Huchuy Qosqo is an Inca archaeological complex with imposing architecture that includes a large open ceremonial center, from which we enjoy a panoramic view of the Sacred Valley, the Vilcanota River, and the snow capped mountain range of the same name. While in the complex, we receive a guided tour, after which we continue our way to Lamay at 3000m/9840ft. Lamay is a town dedicated to agriculture and cattle raising. Later in the afternoon, our private transport drives us back to Cusco. Estimated arrival time in the late evening.

Meals: Boxed-lunch

Total distance 15km (9,56miles)
Estimated hiking time 7–8 hours
Maximum altitude point 4500m (14,760ft)

* Departure and arrival times are approximate



Moderate to challenging

Departure Dates

Daily departures are available along the year, although the period March to December is recommended to avoid the heart of the rainy season.

All private service departure dates are adapted to your request.

Group Size

Size requested by client

Price Information

Price per person

Prices per person depend on the group size, the larger the group the lower the price per person.

Please contact us to check our prices, specifying:

  • trekking program
  • number of people in the trek
  • departure date

Additional discounts (may be added to the above)

  • Early bookings: 5% on full program price for all bookings confirmed at least six months in advance. This discount may not be applicable in case a promotional price is offered.

What’s Included

  • Pre-departure briefing
  • Pick up from your hotel in the morning and transfer in private transport to the starting point of the trek
  • Huchuy Qosqo entrance fee
  • English-speaking, professional, and official tourist guide (2 guides for groups of over 8 people)
  • Boxed-lunch: Vegetarian or special menus are available at no extra cost
  • First-aid kit including emergency oxygen bottle
  • Private transport from Lamay to your hotel in Cusco
  • 24-hour guest service: please ask for the emergency number available during your time of visit

What’s Not Included

  • Breakfast and dinner
  • Tips: please note that our agency staff is well paid so please feel free to tip or not as you wish.

Optional services at additional cost

Please contact us should you require additional services.



Cusco’s climate is divided into two differentiated seasons: the rainy season, from November to April (the heaviest rainfalls occurring usually between January – March); and the dry season, from May to October. The dry season is colder, so temperatures can drop to below 0 ºC at night.

Along this hike, temperatures range from 10-20ºC during the day, although they could be a little colder when crossing the pass in the dry season in case of bad weather. In Lamay / Sacred Valley, at lower altitude, temperatures are already milder.

Appropriate clothing along the Inca Trail

Hiking pants and T-shirts are the most suitable, complemented by a sweater and eventually a fleece for cloudy or rainy weather and for the way back to Cusco. It is very convenient to have light raingear available in the daypack (rain poncho or jacket and/or rain pants) as the weather changes easily and rains can suddenly occur. The rest of necessary implements are included in the Pack List.

Appropriate clothing along this trek

  • Rain gear or rain poncho (plastic ponchos can be purchased in Cusco)
  • Extra T-shirt to change after the hike
  • Strong footwear, waterproof trekking boots recommended
  • A warm jacket or fleece
  • Camera
  • Hat or cap to protect you from the sun, rain and cold
  • Sun block
  • Toilet paper and tissues
  • Snacks: biscuits, energy bars, chocolate, dried fruits, muesli, etc.
  • Water container with water for the day
  • Cash in soles and/or US$
  • Passport copy
  • Optional: walking sticks or poles (rubber covers required in order not to damage the archaeological sites)
    being used to a specific snack, as it may happen that it is not included in our selection.


If you would like to make a reservation for this trek, please follow the process below:

  1. Please make sure to read and agree with the Booking Terms & Conditions as your booking is subject to these terms.
  2. Then click on the Book Now button below. This will lead you to a Reservation Form that we kindly request you to fill out and submit.
  3. Once received by us, one of our travel consultants will reply within 48 hours to confirm or discuss options available for your booking.
  4. When your booking is confirmed, a money deposit will be requested within a specific time frame to secure your reservation.
  5. Once we have received your deposit and if received in time, your booking is secured and confirmed. A service confirmation form will be sent to you including all the details of your program.

In case you have any questions or require additional information, please contact us, we will be very glad to assist you.


  • Because all our treks are only and strictly operated by Enigma and its very professional staff. Other agents claiming daily departures operate their treks jointly with other companies in service rotation. Hence, you book a departure with tour operator A, which risks being operated by tour operator B without you knowing. ENIGMA has a high quality of service and a great reputation, which is only possible by ensuring that only ENIGMA staff operates ENIGMA treks. Even if we only have a single traveller for a set departure date, we will operate this trek.
  • Because we have and can prove an excellent treatment of our staff, including chefs, porters, and wranglers. ENIGMA not only complies with the Porter Law and Regulation, but our wages are above the minimum requested by law and above the average paid by most of the tour operators. All our staff eats well and more than enough, they are provided with sleeping bags, thermal clothes, sleeping tents, trekking boots, thick rain ponchos, harnesses, and lumbar support for their duty on field. Most importantly, they have a program ensuring them a minimum number of departures per month and hence, a minimum income per month as well.
  • Because we are very careful to choose and train the best guides for each group. About 80% of our guides work exclusively for ENIGMA and are highly trained, have excellent language proficiency and communication skills, and are regularly evaluated by the reports each guest fills out after each service. We have specific guides for special requests (ornithology, history and archaeology, flora and fauna, and also generalist guides). Our guides have been trained in Wilderness First Response and/or Advanced First Aid by NOLS and are updated every two years by local authorized schools. We also have guides proficient in several languages besides English and Spanish, including French, Italian, German, Chinese and Japanese. In all of our treks, not only on the Inca Trail, there will be a guide for every 8 guests with one of them being the head guide. This ensures a higher safety and attention to guests versus other operators.
  • Because we have some of the best equipment in field, renewed every year, employing excellent brand and performance tents, surgical steel vaiselle for best hygiene, the best water filters, therm-a-rest sleeping systems, with adequate-warmth bags and inflatable and high-isolation pads, and orthopedic foamy three-level base sleeping pads, among others.
  • Because we have one of the best in-field meal services in the area: throughout our decades of operation, our chefs have been trained by several institutes in Lima and Cusco, with chefs coming from the NY Culinary Institute and renowned chefs from Lima as well, with whom menus have been designed and implemented. Their operation ensures maximum hygiene. Above all, be prepared to not only have a superb trekking experience but also a culinary one, including generous and delicious breakfasts, snacks, lunches, tea services and dinners that we can adapt to your very specific requests. Our menus include a variety of Peruvian and international food and also cater to vegetarian, vegan and special dietary requests (Atkins, Gluten-free, etc.), all at no extra cost. ENIGMA is recognized for its gourmet meals, the quantity and quality of food, as well as for its outstanding menu design. We take natural, locally sourced ingredients on the treks and prepare them in the field; we do not take prepared low-quality food, the meals being an added experience in all of our programs.
  • Because ENIGMA’s responsible operation makes sure to have a minimal impact on the environment of the natural protected areas in which it runs. We train all our staff in our environmental policy, and while ENIGMA used to be the only Inca Trail Official Operator to run a yearly Inca Trail Clean-Up, this initiative has now been taken over by the government, and we continue to participate actively.
    • Because we pay legal taxes on all services contributing to the country’s growth and development. Other tour operators do not declare their sales or most of their earnings, or declare them with a lower value, thus allowing them to lower their prices through a dishonest competition. We always declare our earnings and pay the appropriate taxes.
  • Because all our Group Services have a maximum group size of 12, whereas most tour operators work with a maximum of 16 on the Inca Trail, since this is the number authorized by law, or even higher on other routes. We have established 12 as a maximum since this increases the quality of our service, as there are spots along the treks where being 16 makes it impossible to provide a personalized service.
  • Private Services have no size limit. Enigma guarantees to assign 1 guide for each 8 trekking guests, which means an additional guide is added as of guest number 9.
  • Also, our excellent treatment to our staff is not reduced in the low season: porter wages and guide fees are maintained throughout the rainy season, a gesture highly appreciated by our staff.
  • Finally, due to all of the above, we have very highly satisfied guests, as our numerous testimonials prove. In our Testimonials section of our website, you may find reports dating from 2003 (when we started our operation) to today. The original reports are available at our office in Cusco.
  • We are aware other operators may offer the Inca Trail or other programs at a lower price. This does not mean they are offering the same program at a lower price: the level of service will not be the same. We understand price is an issue, but we kindly request our potential guests and clients to choose a responsible tour operator as otherwise, you risk indirectly promoting the exploitation of rural communities and the growth of informal and illegal operators that do not support the country’s development and growth.

“The most enjoyable aspects of this trek were, the views of Mountains, Huchuy Qosqo and the knowledge from Nilo.”

Mezzena Waltes / Italy
FD Huchuy Qosqo
September 2019