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Short Inca Trail Trek to Machu Picchu 2D/1N

Short Inca Trail Trek to Machu Picchu 2D/1N

Trip Overview

The Arqueological sites along the way, your first sight of Machu Picchu from Inti Punku (the Sun Gate).
The tour begins in Cusco but the trek begins about 3 hours from Cusco at Kilometer 104, past Ollantaytambo in the Sacred Valley.
2 days/ 1 night.
Easy by Andean standards but difficulty level depends on fitness and acclimatization (it still has some steep climbing!).
Inca Trail Permits:
Yes, required. 500 permits are issued daily. In the peak season the trail is booked months in advance.
Departure Dates:
Any day with two people. We offer affordably priced tours for 2 people so that you can depart when it suits you best.
Combos & Upgrades:
Combine with one of our tours for a complete Peru experience or choose an Aguas Calientes upgrade.


The Inca Trail to Machu Picchu is one of the most famous trekking routes in the world and even if you are short of time, you can still get a taste of what people rave about! The Short Inca trail is shorter than the Traditional Inca Trail, but an interesting 2-day program that joins the classical 4-day route at the impressive archaeological site of Wiñay Wayna, continuing through the famous Inti Punku or Sun Gate. Day two includes a full day visit of the world-famous Inca citadel of Machu Picchu. Highly recommended for those short of time and who don’t want to camp but still have a “taste” of the Inca Trail!

Tour Plan


Day 1: Cusco – Km 104 – Wiñay Wayna – Machu Picchu

You will be picked up at your hotel around 5.30am (depending on train time) and transferred to the Ollantaytambo train station. We travel by train, on a very picturesque route for 2 and a half hours until we reach kilometer 104 – the start of the trail for us. Shortly after crossing the bridge over the Rio Urubamba we visit the site of Chachabamba which is a lovely ruin with its water channels and fountains. (Altitude 2050m).

From here, we will hike upwards for about 8km (approximately 4 hours). The trail is well established, but there are still many stairs and the hike is mostly upwards! While this is one of hate easiest treks around the Cusco region, you still need to have a reasonable level of fitness to complete it. After our upwards climb, we arrive at the Inca site Wiñay Wayna (‘Forever Young’) (2680m/8792ft) This is an impressive complex made up of an agricultural center with numerous terraces, a religious sector and an urban sector. Many consider this the most impressive site on the whole Inca Trail. We will have our boxed lunch at Wiñay Wayna.

We will then continue for about one hour further onto ‘Inti Punku’ (The ‘Sun gate’) (2730m/8792ft) from where you will have your first dramatic and impressive view of Machu Picchu (2400m/7873ft). As you are arriving late in the day you may be lucky enough to enjoy the view by yourself! After getting those classic photos, we will walk down the last part of the trail towards the ancient city itself. Before entering Machu Picchu, we will take a side path off the trail to go down to Aguas Calientes, as we will visit Machu Picchu on day 2. We will take the bus down to Aguas Calientes where you will check into your accommodation, and a celebratory dinner before getting to bed early in preparation for the next day’s early start.

Total distance: 13 km (8, 08 miles), estimated walking time 6-7 hours, altitude gain 600m.

Day 2: Aguas Calientes – Machu Picchu – Cusco

We have breakfast and then take the first bus up to Machu Picchu. A walking tour (approximately 2.5 hours) is given by your guide and after this you can explore the mysterious city by yourselves. If you have energy you can also climb Huayna Picchu (2720m/8890ft)!!! (You need to buy a separate entry to do this) From the top of Huayna Piccchu is one of the most spectacular views of Machu Picchu and there is also an opportunity to visit the Temple of the Moon or the Inca Bridge. We include in your tour a box lunch in Machu Picchu and your bus ticket back down to Aguas Calientes. The train usually leaves between 2.30pm and 6pm depending on Peru Rail availability. If desired, an extra night in Aguas Calientes can be arranged. This option is very popular as it allows more time to explore Machu Picchu. (But please note if you visit Machu Picchu a second day you need to purchase the ticket again).N.b. It is no longer possible to stay a night on the Inca Trail for the 2 day, 1 night trek. All people on this tour spend the night in Aguas Calientes, the town nearest Machu Picchu.

IMPORTANT: government regulations will not allow reservations to be made unless accompanied by full passport details of the client and full payment of the entrance fee to the Sanctuary. This is to assist in the 500 people a day rule. Therefore to guarantee your place on the Inca trail you must provide a scanned copy of your passport and a non-refundable deposit. Your reservation will only be confirmed when we have your entrance ticket in our hands. In case of passport number change this information must be relayed to us or you will lose your booking. Original passport must be carried on trail. All times noted are approximate.


The times cited in this itinerary are approximate. Walking times depend on the group and the guide can change lunch spots, depending on the progress of the group. Each guide has their own preferred route and it might not correspond exactly to the route described here.

This is now a non-camping trip, but still requires a degree of fitness and adventurous spirit.

Considering an extra night in Aguas Calientes? We can change the date of your train ticket to the following day. Hotels costs and costs associated with returning to Machu Picchu the following day are additional to trek costs. Please also note that your entry ticket to Machu Picchu is valid for one day only, if you wish to visit the Arqueological sites on a second consecutive day you will need to purchase the ticket again.

Included in the price of your tour is a very comfortable, 3 star hotel with hot water etc. However, we notice that many people are accustomed to a different standard of accommodation or are looking for a splurge. Our Upgrade Package makes this type of change easy to do. This is an upgrade package for treks that already include a night’s stay in a hotel in Aguas Calientes. All packages include the same meals and trains.


This tour only as a private service

Daily Departure with at least 2 people.
Number of Pax Price per Person
02 People $ 850.00
03 People $ 800.00
04 People $ 790.00
06 People $ 780.00
08 People $ 700.00


Pre trek briefing.
Collection from your hotel in the morning of trek departure.
Transport from Cusco to the train station.
Train ticket to Km 104.
Inca Trail Permit.
English/Quechua/Spanish speaking professional guide (you will have an assistant guide for groups over 6 people).
Meals as indicated in the itinerary (optional vegetarian food). Our professional cooks prepare meals that incorporate elements of the western diet and also traditional Peruvian delicacies. (Please communicate with your guide/cook during the trek if you have a preference for certain types of dishes). Salads, if served, are washed in boiled water.
First aid kit including emergency oxygen bottle.
Bus up, down and up again from Aguas Calientes – Machu Picchu.
Train ticket (Expedition service) from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo.
Private transport from Ollantaytambo to Cusco.
Celebratory dinner in Aguas Calientes.
Lunch on the last day is included in this itinerary.
1 night accommodation in Aguas Calientes.

Not Included:

Breakfast on the first morning.
Dinner on the last night.
Entrance to the thermal springs.
Entry to Huayna Picchu ($80).
Tips for the guide.

Packing List

You should bring:

A light day pack with a change of clothes for the whole period of the trek – prepare for a vast range of changes in temperature.
Rain gear (jacket and pants if available) or rain poncho. Plastic ponchos can be bought for about $1 in Cusco.
Strong footwear, waterproof trekking boots recommended.
Warm clothes, including jacket, fleeces, gloves, scarf and beanie/touk. Thermal clothing is also recommended, especially for sleeping.
Camera, films and batteries (batteries consume more quickly under cold conditions).
Hat or cap to protect you from the sun, rain and cold.
Sun block.
After-sun cream or hydrating cream for face and body.
Insect repellent – minimum recommended 20% DEET – although no malaria risk has been reported.
Snacks: biscuits, energy bars, chocolate, raw fruits, muesli, etc.
Non-disposable canteen (Nalgene type) and water for the first morning.
We advise you to bring water sterilizing tablets in case you collect water from streams.
Your own medical kit with any special medications that you might require, paracetamol, second skin for blisters etc.
Small towel or sarong.
Bathers/swimsuit (if you intend on swimming in hot springs ).
Cash – sufficient for snacks, tips and souvenirs.
Original passport & ISIC (International Student Identity Card) if you have one.
Walking sticks or poles (we can hire these to you. Please note poles with metal tips cannot be carried into Machu Picchu and should be left at your hotel on the final day).
inal day).

Optional Extras:

We can hire the following to you.Porter to carry your things ($40 per day).
Walking stick lightweight aluminum ($2.00 per day, per stick) two sticks are recommended for tough hikes.
Aguas Calientes Upgrade – comfortable 3star hotel, nicer restaurants and Vistadome train upgrade $115 per person.

Hire Policy:

When calculating costs for hire of walking stick, sleeping bag, calculate using the length of the tour even though you won’t use the equipment on the final day it will still be ‘on the road’ and occupied.
If you hire equipment and break it – you are responsible for price of replacement /or repair. (Please do the right thing!).

Available Discounts:

5% discount on treks only for members of South American Explorers Club (SAE).
Students: US$ 25.00 (students require a valid International Student Identity Card. Please beware that Youth Travel Cards are not valid).
Teenagers: US$ 15.00 (up to 15 years of age, passport copy required for all bookings).
Children: US$ 35.00 (up to 10 years of age, passport copy required for all bookings).


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