Cachicata Trek to Machu Picchu | Inca Quarry Trail and Inca Trail
Salkantay Trek Machu
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Cachicata Trek to Machu Picchu

Cachicata Trek to Machu Picchu

Do you hear about some ancient Inca quarries where Incas take the rocks to build their empire? Yes, they are few, but they are and with this tour, you will have the opportunity to visit one of the most important Inca quarries. "Cachicata", the inca quarry used to build Ollantaytambo Fortress. Sound great yeah?


The Inca Quarry of Cachicata is not a typical trek taken by many travelers. The Cachicata trail features some ancient Inca quarries, settlements, and the Intipunku gateway. This journey provides an in-depth look at this magnificent civilization from the Andes called the Incas and its high level of architectural engineering. During the Inca Quarry trek, you will discover the ancient Inca town Ñaupa.


There you will explore the site on your archaeological tour in what once was the Inca quarry Cachicata. The Inca Quarry is a unique place where the Incas unearthed rocks to build their important temples, fortress, and their civilization. The best of all?  On this trek, you will experience the fascinating and diverse landscapes that offer the  Sacred Valley of the Incas, also you will have the opportunity to meet and talk with local communities and why not ask about their customs with your tour guide's help if you don´t speak Spanish. Don't forget the panoramic views of the surrounding mountain ranges. 


Cachicata's proximity to Machu Picchu makes trekking around it an attractive alternative to the oversubscribed Inca Trail. Remember that  Cachicata is located in the Sacred Valley of the Incas, and that you can appreciate the Huarocondor terraces, the water fall, incas ruins, andean terraces, Intipunku (Sun gate), Inca trail original, stone quarries.So explore with us one of the best alternative trek to Machu Picchu. If you want more information, please don't forget to read our section Before you go!!  and avoid any problem during your trip.

Before you go

Inca Quarry Trek Overview

Sustainable Tourism: At Salkantay Trek Machu, we are happy to promote and practice sustainable tourism and support local communities.

Difficulty Hike: 3 Demanding.

Age Requirements: 12+

Group Available: Min: 2

Crew: Salkantay Trek Machu representatives in Cusco and a professional speaking English tour guide during the Inca Quarry Cachicata Trek and Machu Picchu

Accommodation: Campsite (2 nights), Hotel (01 night)

Meals: 03 Breakfasts, 03 Lunches, 03 Dinners, and 02-afternoon tea

Transportation: Private transport, van, ticket train round trip to Machu Picchu

Camping Equipment: You can view our Cachicata camping equipment here!


Quick Itinerary:

Day 01: Cusco - Huarocondo - Pachar - Corimarca

Day 02: Corimarca - Queñacancha

Day 03: Queñacancha - Cachicata (Inca Quarry)

Day 04: Cachicata - Machu Picchu - Cusco


Highlights of the Inca Quarry Trail to Machu Picchu:

  • 3-day hike with a professional tour guide, chef, muleteer, and horses
  • Discover the Inca sites
  • View the sunrise over Machu Picchu
  • Visit the stone quarries of the built to Ollantaytambo
  • Hike part of the original Inca Trail
  • Guided tour of Machu Picchu
  • Enjoyed the most beautiful scenery of the Inca Quarry Trail.


Best Alternatives Treks to the Inca Quarry:


Day 01: Cusco - Huarocondo - Pachar - Corimarca (L, D)

Day 01: Cusco - Huarocondo - Pachar - Corimarca (L, D)

We drive from Cusco to Pachar located in the Sacred Valley, arrive Huaroncondor to trailhead, here we will meet with muleteer and horses and we will prepare the camping equipment, then we climb up the stairs and visit to Huarocondor terraces. continue the trek to Raphcca, 2,900 m.a.s.l (9,514ft.) From here we hike up the valley, along the route we appreciate inka terraces,  water channels, Quechua comunities and endemic flora and fauna. We follow an steep trail that eventually bring us to a tall waterfall where we can pause to refresh our body and mind. Walking further, we visit the little known Inka site of Corimarca, our first campsite.

Day 02: Corimarca - Queñacancha (B, L, D)

Day 02: Corimarca - Queñacancha (B, L, D)

On this day, we will climb across an open meadows, reaching a zone of the high altitude shrubland known as Puna, approaching the pass of Chancachuco 4,400  m.a.s.l (14,435ft). This part of the trek offers an unique panoramic views of the highest peaks in Cusco region so don´t forget your camera and pay attention  maybe you could find some of typical animals along the path. Then, our route continues across a high plateau, passing by mountain lakes where we may see  andean and wetland birds,so if we see some consider a lucky trekker. Finally we will descent to our second campsite at Qeuñacancha, 4080 m.a.s.l (13,385ft).

Day 03: Queñacancha - Cachicata (B, L, D)

Day 03: Queñacancha - Cachicata (B, L, D)

We hike downhill following the trail until we join the Inka water channel which comes from Maracocha lake, from here we reach the temple call Intiwatana, which is located on the edge of the mountain called Apu Alambre, in front of the Veronica snow peak. Then we continue downhill to Choquetacarpo an archaeological site, which was most likely the residence of architects who managed the Inca quarries and performed ceremonies at Intipunku, after lunch we wend our way downward, exploring different sectors of one of the biggest Inka quarries, where massive carved blocks of pink rhyolite lie scattered in disarray. The quarried stones, testimony to a great building project that was never finished and were destined for the Inka site of Ollantaytambo. We descend to our third and last camp near the village of Cachicata. Here we enjoy toilets, hot showers and a warmer climate.

Day 04: Cachicata - Machu Picchu - Cusco (B)

Day 04: Cachicata - Machu Picchu - Cusco (B)

Wake up very early,today is the best day because you will have the oppotunity to finally explore Machu picchu!! After a delicious breakfast we will go to the train station to take the train that will leave us at Aguas Calientes town (Machu Picchu town), here our guide will be waiting for us to then take us to Machu Picchu, you will have a  guided tour of Machu Picchu and then you can explore this astounding and mysterious Inca settlement by yourself. In the night we will take the train to Ollantaytambo and transfer you to your hotel in Cusco.

What is included in the Inca Quarry Trek?

  • Pre-trek briefing (Our guide will be visiting your hotel 2 or 1 day before the trek for your briefing);
  • Early morning transfer by private bus to Huaroncondor - the initial point of the trek;
  • Accommodation: Campsites (2 nights) and a Hotel in Machu Picchu (1 night);
  • Entrance fee to Machu Picchu;
  • Meals: 3x breakfast, 3x lunch, 3x dinner and 2x afternoon hot beverages;
  • Professional Speaking English Tour Guide during the Inca Quarry and Machu Picchu;
  • Professional Cook;
  • Horseman;
  • Horses to carry food, camping and cooking equipment and 7 kg for your personal belongings;
  • Emergency Horse;
  • Camping equipment: Personal double tents,
  • An Inflatable sleeping term-a-rest mattress;
  • A feather sleeping bag (for up to -5°C);
  • A pair of hiking poles;
  • A blanket per person;
  • A pillow;
  • Rain poncho (In the rainy season);
  • Duffel bag (for your personal belongings);
  • A T-shirt of the Inca Trail Map;
  • A shuttle bus down from Machu Picchu to Aguas Calientes Town;
  • Tables and chairs, a cooking tent with cooking equipment, dining and toilet tents and bottled gas;
  • A round trip by tourist train (Expedition Service) between Ollantaytambo and Aguas Calientes;
  • Private Tourist van from Ollantaytambo to Cusco;
  • First-aid kit and emergency oxygen bottle.

Not Included:

  • Breakfast on the day 1 and lunch on the last day;
  • International and domestic flights nor airport departure taxes;
  • Travel insurance;
  • Entrance fee to Huayna Picchu Mountain ($ 25) or Machu Picchu Mountain ($25);
  • A shuttle bus between Aguas Calientes and Machu Picchu ($ 12 - one way, $24 - a round trip);
  • Tips to local staff (please note: it is a custom to give tips in Peru; however, it is not obligatory);
  • Other extras not mentioned.

Meal budget: Please allow USD 20-50 for meals not included.

Solo Travel: Please note that if you have booked the "Single Room" option for this tour, you receive your own single tent and a single room in Aguas Calientes.

Local flights: No local flights are included in the trek´s price!. In case you want to book the flight from Lima to Cusco, Salkantay Trek Machu can offer best price for the local flight!

Inca Trail Vs Alternative Treks

Many people include The Inca Trail to Machu Picchu in this “Things to do”, although what most people don’t know is that there are various Inca Trails Trips to Machu Picchu to pick from in the Cusco region. The difference lies in what kind of an experience you want, hiking alternative treks, and how challenging you like your treks.


You have to take into account that usually you will need to book in very advanced the Inca Trail, and in case it is fully booked, we recommend other good alternatives:



Extra Information to the trek

Booking Information




  • If you would like to make a reservation for this program, please go directly to the Booking Online section of this website.
  • Once you have chosen your tour, please read the Booking Terms & Conditions, as your booking is subject to these terms.
  • Then fill out and submit the Reservation Form that you will find in the Booking now section of this website. We will need all details for each trekker
  • In a maximum of two working days, you will receive an email from one of our travel consultants confirming or denying your booking.
  • In case your reservation is confirmed, our booking department will send the next step to payment
  • Once we confirm the deposit reception, your booking is confirmed. Our booking department will be sent to you including all the details of your program and voucher service.
  • In case you have any doubts, queries or require additional information, please contact us, we will be very glad to assist you. Your request will be answered by return mail within a maximum of 2 working days.


Packing List for the Cachicata Trek



Generally speaking you should pack as lightly as possible. The horses carry your luggage from Pachar (1st day) to Cachicata (2th day). 3 day hike, you will take your luggage by train to Aguas Calientes. You are expected to carry your own luggage (max 10 min). We recommend keeping the weight under 5 kg/10lb. You will need to carry clothes, sleeping bag.


If very important your take best cover backpacker, because the weather in Cachicata Trek to Machu Picchu is change every date, we can’t predict it raining or no. If you don’t have, we recommended putting your clothes, sleeping bag and other personal equipment inside the plastic bag.



Hiking pants and T-shirts are recommended during the day, complemented by sweaters, fleeces and waterproof jackets. 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. At night, warm clothing is required, down jackets can be useful, otherwise a fleece and a jacket. During the third day (if sunny) and in Machu Picchu, convertible hiking pants are useful, as can be switched into shorts if necessary. Machu Picchu has a warm climate, getting only cold at night. The rest of necessary implements are included in the “What we recommend that you bring” list.









Information to consider:



The highland region of Cusco has well defined winter and summer seasons.Winter days (June - August) are very sunny and warm, but the temperature drops to near freezing at night . Rainy season is from January to March. December and January are two of the nicest months for trekking with only the occasional shower and blooming flowers. So the best time to visit this path is during the dry season, better in May, June and August.


  • Starting Altitude - 3300m / 10,827ft. 
  • Highest Altitude - 4500m / 14,764ft 
  • Walking Distance - 25 km / 15.5 miles 
  • Longest Day - Day 2, approximately 12 km/7.5 miles


Many of our travelers ask this, How hard is the Inca Quarry Trail? Please note that Cachicata trek requires acclimatization at the city of Cusco maybe you can visit some interesting atractions before your trek for example taking the city tour or a Sacred Valley tour. The difficult depends of your physical condition, but according to many travelers experience the trek is a challenge and it is moderate difficult. 



The camping equipment to Cachicata trek will be returned to Cusco on day 3rd, you need to give to chef the sleeping bag and the thermal rest mattress.

  • This trek to Cachica included 5 kilos of personal items in the tour price carried by horses. You will need to carry with you a daypack with your Camera, water bottle, snacks, cold weather clothing and a poncho in case of rain (unlikely in Dry season May to October)- but as a precaution) and anything you will need before lunch as horses do not walk alongside you.
  • You will meet up with your bag at lunch and then it will be waiting for you in your tent at campsites.
  • The bus down from Machu Picchu to Aguas Calientes not included in this trek
  • Camping (double tent) provided in nights 1st, 2nd
  • The bed (double room) provided in Aguas Calientes town on nights 3th


  • Backpack 45 Lts USD 20
  • Walking sticks or trekking poles USD 20 for both
  • You need to take 5 kilos of personal belonging included in the tour price carried by horses ...If you would like to request more porter age for personal items each extra 3 kilos requested is USD 20 additional charge but you can just request this in the office at your checking.
  • Maybe you have to doubt to walk in this trek, you can hire the extra emergency horses, and the price is USD 80.



From $ 600.00
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