ALTERNATIVE TREK TO MACHU PICCHU – LARES TREK AND INCA JUNGLE

LARES TREK

Lares: where is it located? How high is it?

Where is Lares located?

Lares is located in the Andes Mountains, in southern Peru. This district of Cusco belongs to the province of Calca.

How high is it?
Lares is 3,150 meters above sea level (m.s.n.m.).

What is the weather like in Lares?
The climate in Lares is temperate with cold at night. The average temperature is 11ºC. During the day, the heat can reach 21ºC. At night, temperatures can reach 1ºC.

How to get to Lares?
Lares is separated from the city of Cusco by 149 kilometers of highway. From this point, it is reached through a car trip that goes through the towns of Pisac and Calca in the Sacred Valley of the Incas.

What to see and do in Lares?
Lares has several tourist attractions such as:

Lares thermo-medicinal baths.
Mantto Falls.
The hiking route to Machu Picchu.
Lares is famous for being the starting point of the so-called Lares Trek, a route that leads to Machu Picchu on a 4-day, 3-night road.

More about the Lares Trek

Is it difficult to do the Lares Trek?

The Lares Trek has a medium difficulty. Compared to the Inca Trail or the Salkantay Trek, this route is less arduous. The only difficulty is altitude sickness, due to trails located in high altitude geographies.

When is the best time to do the Lares Trek?
The best time to do the Lares Trek is during the dry season (from April to October). In those months, the sky is clearer and there is less chance of rain. Therefore, the roads are in better condition for hiking.

How to fight altitude sickness on the Lares Trek?
One of the biggest difficulties during the Lares Trek is altitude sickness (also known as ‘soroche’).

The best way to combat this disease is acclimatizing to the city of Cusco a few days before the trek.

Another option is to drink plenty of water. Coca tea, for example, is a drink based on coca leaf that effectively fights the ailments and symptoms of soroche.

The Incas, as well as the inhabitants of the Andes to this day, chew coca leaves as a remedy for this and other ailments.

Is it possible to do the Lares Trek on your own?
There is no restriction for a visitor to be encouraged to do the Lares Trek on their own. However, unlike other hikes like the Salkantay Trek or the Choquequirao Trek, the trails are not well signposted, making it difficult to stay on course.

To do the Lares Trek on your own you must understand the route to follow. For this, a good map would be effective. Furthermore, the inhabitants that inhabit this region are mainly Quechua speakers.

What to bring to the Lares Trek?
The tour services that lead to the Lares Trek include the basic implements such as tents, food and a pack horse.

In addition, it is recommended to bring the following:

  1. Sleeping bag.
  2. Trekking poles.
  3. Hat or cap.
  4. Sunscreen.
  5. Warm clothes during the nights.
  6. Light clothing during the day.
  7. Poncho for rains.
  8. Bottle with water
  9. Hiking shoes.
  10. Bath clothes (for Lares thermo-medicinal baths).
  11. Snacks
  12. Photographic camera.
  13. Extra money.

Recommendations during the Lares Trek
The Lares Trek is the route that crosses high-altitude landscapes until you reach Machu Picchu. On the route you can see the beautiful landscapes and indigenous peoples with ancestral traditions.

For a perfect trip it is recommended:

Acclimatize to the city of Cusco before doing the trek. Thus, the symptoms of altitude sickness will be avoided.
It is not necessary to be in optimal physical shape to perform the Lares Trek. However, a little pre-workout before the hike would do.
Chewing coca leaf during the tour (as the Incas did hundreds of years ago). Another alternative is to take a pill against soroche before starting the trek.
The Lares Trek is a great opportunity to learn about the way of life of the peoples that inhabit the Andes.
These people offer their products made from alpaca fiber at lower prices than the stores in Lima, Cusco or other countries.

INCA JUNGLE

What is the Inca Jungle at Machu Picchu?
The Inca Jungle tour is a tour that departs from the City of Cusco and ends in Machu Picchu, after 4 days and 3 nights after performing a series of adventure sports such as: cycling, trekking, canoeing and zip line.
The Inca Jungle is one of the most popular tours in Peru.
What is the weather like during the Inca Jungle?
The climate during the Inca Jungle is varied.
The coldest point is in Abra Málaga (average temperature of 9ºC during the day). Then we descend to the tropical climate of the jungle eyebrow.
The warmest point is in the town of Santa Teresa (day temperature up to 26ºC).
What is the flora and fauna like during the Inca Jungle?
The Inca Jungle is characterized by the beautiful landscapes during the tour.
Along the way you can see vizcachas, llamas, spectacled bears, cock of the rocks and a wide variety of orchids.
In addition, plantations of bananas, mangoes, oranges and more are crossed.
Does 4 days seem too long for the Inca Jungle? There is another 3-day service, which accelerates the pace of the walks to reach Machu Picchu earlier. However, the most popular Inca Jungle tour is the one that lasts 4 days.

What sports does the Inca Jungle include?
The Inca Jungle includes the following adventure sports:

  1. Cycling (included).
  2. Hike (included).
  3. Canoeing (not included).
  4. Zipline (not included).

Who can do the Inca Jungle?
The Inca Jungle is available for tourists of all ages.
However, the tour is recommended for tourists in good physical shape.
Older adults should consult their doctor before the tour.
Minors must be accustomed to physical efforts and take the tour in the company of their parents.

 

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