Choquequirao, “the Cradle of Gold”, is probably the last Inca outpost in the province of La Convención, Cusco. At 3085m, it is on a promontory on the western flanks of the Vilcabamba range, nearly 2000 meters above the raging Apurimac River. The Apurimac is responsible for carving one of the world’s deepest canyons.
Wedged in dense cloud forest, it is comparable in size to Machu Picchu. It is accessible only by a tough and demanding trail, which ascends and descends almost 1500m twice, in a zig-zag pattern. Within just a few kilometers it offers the extremes of glaciers at over 6000m to steamy tropical valleys at 1800m.
It is believed that around 1200 people lived there among Kings, Queens and High priests adorned in gold and feathers and necklaces.
Choquequirao has sweeping staircases, ritual baths, temples and squares where ceremonies were held must have made for a very elegant life.
Only 30 percent of the ruins have been uncovered and there are more in the area still covered by thick jungle. Locals believe that when the final blanket has been lifted, Choquequirao will outshine its more famous neighbor, Machu Picchu.
Money from tourism is important to continue the arduous jungle clearing.
WOULD YOU LIKE TO BOOK THIS TOUR? ASK FOR AVAILABILITY
CHOQUEQUIRAO IS PURE MAGIC. TOUCH ITS STONES, CONTACT NATURE.
DURATION: 4 days / 3 nights.
SEASON: From January / to December 2015
GUIDE SERVICE: Private
This is certainly the easiest way to visit Choquequirao in terms of pace and access. Don’t get it wrong though, adventure is GUARANTEED trekking up and down the Apurimac Canyon. This journey has been thought and planned to give the traveler proper acclimatization time before and an adequate rest after exploring the site. It is a 20.6 mile trek in and out the same trail (10.3 miles each way). The journey includes a visit to the mysterious Saywite Monolith.
FIRST DAY. – CUSCO – SAYWITE – “VILLA LOS LOROS” LODGE
After picking up passengers from their hotel, we leave Cusco at 7:00 a.m. in a private bus, arriving at the Archeological Park of Saywite, where we will know the mysterious monolith and other nearby ruins. After having a box lunch, we continue the trip, descending in the Huanipaca valley until we reach “Villa Los Loros” Choquequirao lodge. After settling into our rooms and a little relax, we’ll have a briefing on the next day’s trek. (Box Lunch, D)
SECOND DAY. – “VILLA LOS LOROS” LODGE – PLAYA SAN IGNACIO – CHOQUEQUIRAO
We leave after breakfast, at 5:30 am, and walk until we reach the riverbank of the noisy river Apurimac (in the native Quechua language, Apu Rimac means “God that speaks”). Crossing the hanging San Ignacio Bridge, we’ll begin the ascent from the river (4.750 feet) until we reach the Choquequirao campsite at 9.410 feet above sea level. Along the route you can soak in the beauty of the natural surroundings, especially the great variety of flora and fauna. After lunch, we will visit the Cultivated Terraces of Phaqchayoq and the House of Waterfalls. Finally, we return to the campsite where we have dinner and spend the night. (B,L,D)
THIRD DAY. – CHOQUEQUIRAO ALL DAY
Today we have the entire day to visit the best sectors of the Archeological Park of Choquequirao. We will have lunch near the collection, as not to interrupt such a nice view, and with any luck we will be able to witness the flight of the majestic Andean Condor over the deep canyon of Apurimac. Finally, we will return to our campsite where dinner will be served and we will spend the night. (B,L,D)
FOURTH DAY.-CHOQUEQUIRAO – “VILLA LOS LOROS” LODGE – CUSCO
After breakfast, we will begin the return, descending into the imposing canyon of the Apurimac River until we reach San Ignacio Beach, and from there we will continue on horses until we reach “Villa Los Loros” lodge. After a shower and lunch we’ll take a ride on the bus back to Cusco, arriving in approximately 5 hours, at 9:00 pm. (B,L)
THE HIKER’S BACKPACK
Each hiker will carry on his backpack only necessary items for the trek (water, snacks, insect repellent, camera, etc.).
All other items will be carried directly to the campsite by our porters.
THINGS THAT YOU SHOULD BRING
•T-shirts and long-sleeve shirts
•Short pants or sports wear
•A cap for the sun and a hat for the cold
•A sweater and a jacket
•Personal care items
THE PACKAGE INCLUDES
•Round-trip transportation from Cusco to “Villa Los Loros” lodge and back to Cusco
•A bilingual guide (English/Spanish)
•One nights lodging at “Villa Los Loros”
•Two nights camping in the Archeological Park of Choqekiraw (Choquequirao)
•High quality camping equipment (tents, sleeping bags, mattress, cooking tent, dining tent, camping tables and chairs, cooking equipment and dining items, lighting, etc.)
•Radio communication throughout the trek
•All the meals and drinks
•Muleteers, mules or llamas to carry equipment and supplies, a camp chef, porters
•Entrance fees to the archeological sites of Saywite and Choqekiraw
•Saddled horse from Playa San Ignacio to “Villa Los Loros” lodge
If you will take any trek with us. we ask you to fill the customer chart regarding the commentaries or otherwise you can inform to the Operations Department.
This is a very important requirement and necessary to do after take the tour to avoid problems regarding the quality of the service and help you to resolve it before you leave to your country otherwise our agency is assuming that all your services was ok therefore we are not going to accept any claims.