Inca Quarry Hike, The Gate of the Sun
Inca Quarry Hike
Inca Quarry Hike–Hike to this unique place to retrace the steps of the Inca, Peru’s fascinating ancient civilization. Follow the ancient trail where the Incas walked, through the fertile heartland of the Sacred Valley and to the magnificent Ollantaytambo ruins. This action-filled express Peruvian tour gets you closer to the secrets of this elusive civilization on a breathtaking adventure along this trail. It was here that the great stone blocks were slid down the hillside and hauled across the river to Ollantaytambo. There are three separate stone quarries, within half a kilometer of one another, littered with massive chiseled blocks and small Chullpas, or burial towers. The western and highest quarry contains mysterious needle-shaped blocks that are up to seven meters long. Shoot amazing pictures through the frame of the Gate of the Sun, that frames perfectly Veronica snow-capped mountain in the background. On the trail approaching the quarries, numerous Piedras Cansadas (tired stones in local beliefs) that never made it to their final destination can be observed. This day hike to Cachicata (Inca Quarry) offers great stunning vistas of the Urubamba Range with many snow-capped peaks along, the great Sacred Valley, a greener valley due to the Corn, and Quinua crops, and Ollantaytambo, an important Incan site located in the valley with temples, farming terraces, aqueducts, granaries, etc–Inca Quarry Hike- Join us!
Duration: Full Day
Physical Rating: 3 – Average, Moderate. Half- to full-day hikes (3-6 hours) over rolling countryside on most days, occasional steep trails. Many of our hotel-based walking tours are in this category. Some trips with minimal hiking but rugged travel conditions or long drives, such as Journey to Salkantay, and Ausangate, are Trip Level 3.
Service Level: Upgraded
Group Size: Small Private Group. Small group experience, Min 02 – Max 08, Avg 04.
Trip Extension: Yes, You can include a tour to Machu Picchu through the Sacred Valley of the Incas, and Amazon Jungle. We can customize this private tour just for you. Any element can be tailored – activities, length, hotels, and destinations. Call us at +51 984 464 391 or request a quote at firstname.lastname@example.org.
After picking up from the hotel, we drive to Ollantaytambo, the starting point of the trail. This round-trip walk, which takes 4-6 hours to the quarries and a few more to reach the Gate of the Sun, begins at the Inca bridge near Ollantaytambo and along the banks of the Río Urubamba. We follow a fairly well-preserved Inca trail to Cachicata, a trail that goes uphill in switchbacks. The stone quarry 700-900 meters above the valley floor that is visible from the Ollantaytambo sun temple. Where the great stone blocks were slid down the hillside and hauled across the river to Ollantaytambo by the Incas.
Once our arrival we’ll explore the three separate granite quarries, located within half a kilometer of one another, littered with massive chiseled blocks and small Chullpas, or burial towers, and the Gate of the Sun perched on the ridge of the mountain. We’ll have a complete exploration of the site, led by our Leader. After exploring the three quarries, burial buildings, and the Sun Gate, we’ll walk downhill to get our picnic spot to enjoy our lunch with awesome vistas around. We then continue hiking to the starting point again to take our van to get our hotel. All meals included.
– Private transport.
– Entrance fee to Inca Quarry.
– Roomy dining tent with table and chairs, and a kitchen tent, manned by a professional cooking staff.
– Tour Leader.
– Quechua porters to carry our gears.
– First-Aid Kits, Oxygen tank.
– Picnic, and snacks, with option for vegetarians, gluten-free, lactose-free.
– A professional Quechua chef who grew up in the countryside, and personal staff to make the equipment ready.
– Outdoor toilet tents with chemical toilets at our picnic sites.
What’s Not Included
– Hiking poles, you might get them rented from us US$5 per day a pair of poles, Black Diamond or Leki brand.
– Extra expenditure during the trek, such as: soda, alcoholic drinks, extra snacks.
– Travel Insurance.
– Travel and health insurance (bring copies with you please), we highly recommend to get an insurance of trip cancellation, interruption; an insurance to protect your travel investment, Included with your pre-departure package, bring your travel insurance to cover trip cancellation, interruption, baggage loss and delay, emergency medical evacuation insurance and emergency medical expense insurance. Any unexpected situations occurred during the journey and which are beyond our control, including changes in scheduling trains or flights, delays, strikes, cancellations, missed connections, etc. it should be covered by the passenger as a whole. Also, if you for physical reasons of health cannot continue the trek or walk, and will need emergency evacuation then all charges incurred such as transportation, hotel, ambulance, doctors, medication, hospitalization, etc. will be at passenger’s expense.
– International or internal airfare, transfers for independent arrival or departure, any meals not specified after each itinerary day in the Detailed Itinerary, airport departure taxes, optional tipping or gratuities to leaders or staff, additional hotel nights that may be necessitated by airline schedule changes or other factors, expenses such as medical immunizations (if any), travel insurance, or passports and visas, and other expenses of a personal nature (alcoholic beverages, laundry, etc.).
We make hiking and camping in the Andes as comfortable as it can get! On the trail, you are accompanied by our experienced team of trek Leaders, and all your gear is carried for you, leaving you free to hike with just a light daypack to hold your camera, water bottle, jacket, etc. Our picnic amenities include a dining tent with a dining table, chairs with backs, camp meals prepared by our highly trained staff, toilet tents with chemical toilets. Our camp crew takes care of all camp chores, including with beautiful picnic lunch each day at a scenic spot along the trail.
From USD 180.00 Per Person.
Prices are quoted in US Dollars and all payments must be made in US Dollars.
To offer the lowest possible cost, our trips are tier priced according to the number of full-paying participants on the trip.
All costs are per person, based on double occupancy.
Trip Payment Schedule.
– At the time of reservation: 50% of total balance.
– 90 days prior to departure: Balance should be paid fully, or once upon your arrival in Cusco the other 50% of final balance must be paid fully.
Cancellation and Transfer Fee Schedule.
– Minimum fee (hike permit fee): $80 per person
– 61-90 days prior to departure: 30% of trip cost
– 46-60 days prior to departure: 50% of trip cost
– 45 days or less: 100% of trip cost.
Preparing For Your Trek
The day hikes are mostly off the beaten paths and sometimes bridle paths. Trails go up and down across green mountains, valleys, plains, and sometimes crossing high-altitude passes. For the most part, you can hike at your own speed because we always have a staff member hiking in the lead as well as one behind with the slowest hiker in our group if there are 7 participants in the group. Any fit, experienced hiker will enjoy this hike, but we recommend you make an extra effort to prepare by engaging in regular exercise well beyond your normal routine. To accelerate your conditioning, try walking faster than 1.5 miles per hour, walking on steeper inclines, using your gym’s stair-climbing machines, or going on long hikes (also a good way to break in your boots). Please be aware that there are a few sections of long, steep stone staircases, so we do suggest hiking poles to protect your knees. The trek takes place at altitudes between 9,348 feet and 11,927 feet.
What To Pack. Keep in mind that it’s a day hike, and you will find it is not that challenging since all you really need are the following: comfortable hiking clothes, with additional warm layers, good hiking boots, hiking poles, and personal toiletries (we provide a detailed clothing list). On the tour, you will just carry your own daypack for the items that you want with you on the excursion, such as a water bottle, camera, and a jacket. Our extra gears are left in our van.
A professional Crocotrail Travel Tour Leader with a deep knowledge of the destination and a focus on customer service makes all the difference. Our leaders are experts in Inca history, nature, birding, gastronomy, local laguage, etc, with a profound connection to Peru’s fascinating traditional culture. They take care of all the details so that you can savor the experiences of the trip. And just as important, they have a remarkable gift for sharing their extensive knowledge and favorite places. Our Tour Leaders have the warmth, endless energy, and that special “it” factor that transforms a trip into an unforgettable journey.
Make the most of Peru’s natural beauty with outdoor picnics on each adventure tour, and Discover the delights of Peruvian cuisine in each tour destinations and outdoor tours. So food is awesome!
Our chefs are to Food what Leonardo da Vinci is to Art, so we rely on really experienced Quechua chefs who were trained and chosen to make this food in the mountains, and they are our stars.
You’ll be surprised and delighted at the variety and quality of our on-the-trail cuisine, a blend of freshly made Peruvian & Fusion dishes with vegetarian options. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are served in our enclosed dining tent, complete with table and chairs. As you start the day’s hike, we provide tasty trail snacks including fresh fruit and chocolate.
Lunches consist of a wide variety of dishes, depending on the day, including delicious roast guinea pig (a local delicacy dish), beef, chicken, fish, pasta salads, soup, casseroles, and other offerings, or surprises with appetizers and delicious desserts. They are served at a comfortable and scenic spot along the trail where our staff has set up tables and chairs, and quite often an open tent for shade. At each lunch stop, we set up our own private toilet tent and chemical toilet for minimal impact on the environment.
This trip is level 3. Average, Moderate. Half- to full-day hikes (3-6 hours) over rolling countryside on most days, occasional steep trails. Many of our hotel-based walking tours are in this category. Some trips with minimal hiking but rugged travel conditions or long drives, such as Journey to Salkantay, and Ausangate, are Trip Level 3. Trails can be rugged, not the well-maintained trails you may be accustomed to in your country. For the most part, you can hike at your own speed. Our group will spread out along the trail during the hiking time for about 6 hours. On the trail, you will just carry your own daypack for the items that you want with you on the trail, such as a water bottle and a jacket. Our team of Quechua porters carries all your other gear from camp to camp.
A Typical Trekking Day. Hiking distances on trek are normally measured in hours, not miles, since maps aren’t really accurate enough to assess how far we walk up and down on winding mountain trails. With rest stops and photo stops, few people walk faster than one mile an hour in a mountainous region.
– Original passport and Student ISIC card (if applicable), and some copies.
– Travel insurance (and some copies).
– Backpack to carry your things.
– Phone, power bank battery, camera charger and adapter.
– Deet or mosquito repellent ( recommendable 30% deet).
– Hiking poles ( or you can rent one pair from us).
– Rain gear (especially if traveling in the wet season, from October to March).
– Comfortable hiking clothes, including warm clothes for the nighttime.
– Good hiking boots with protector ankle or similar, and one pair of flip-flops or light sandals.
– Sunblock and sunglasses.
– Hiking long sleeve T-shirts.
– Hiking trousers.
– Hiking socks.
– Water bottle or canteen.
– American dollars and peruvian soles in cash.
– Sun hat, cap, and warm hat and gloves.
– Toilet paper, and face tissue paper.
– Anti-inflammatory tablets (e.g. Ibuprofen).
– Personal first-aid kit (should contain lip salve, Aspirin, Band Aids, anti-histamine, Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrea, re-hydration powder, extra prescription drugs you may take).
– For more info you can visit Gear Lexicon https://www.alpineascents.com/pdf/gear-lexicon.pdf
When to Go
The day hikes can be hiked all year around except in late January and February, the rainiest months, when the trail is blocked and damaged sometimes by the rainfall. The trail reopens in March and April, when the rains lighten up and the mountains are still green. High season begins in May and extends through September, as these are the driest months. October through December are considered shoulder season, when occasional rain is possible, but keep in mind that the highlands of Peru are a temperate desert and it is not uncommon for it not to rain for weeks at a time even in the height of the rainy season. This is also the time with the fewest hikers on the trail, more flowers in bloom, and fewer tourists at Machu Picchu as well as in Cusco. Temperatures in the Cusco-Machu Picchu region range from the high 60s in the daytime to the low 40s at night, with some variation depending on the time of year you go.