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Choquequirao means “cradle of gold” in Quechua although this is probably not its original Inca name. It is another “lost city of the Incas” located high on a ridge spur almost 1750m above the raging glacier-fed Apurimac River and surrounded by towering snow-capped peaks. Choquequirao (3,085 m) is situated amongst the spurs of the Salkantay Mountain Range in the Province La Convención in the Region Cusco above the Valley of the river Río Apurímac. The entire complex encompasses 1,800 hectares of which 30-40% is uncovered.
Day 1: Cusco – Cachora – Chikiska
Day 2: Chikiska – Marampata – Choquequiraw
Day 3: Choquequiraw – Inca Site – Marampata – Chiquiska
Day 4: Chiquiska – Cachora– Cusco
We’ll pick you up at 5:00 a.m. from your accommodation then we’ll take a bus to go to Cachora (small village-starting point) where we’ll arrive after 3 hours, after the breakfast we’ll start to walk, this first day we’ll walk approximately 6 or 7 hours in the route we’ll find some typical plants and a beautiful view of Padrayoc and WaynaCachora snow-covered peaks, we’ll arrive to Capuliyoc a nice view point where you can appreciate the Apurimac Canyon and sometimes you can see flying some condors, from this place we’ll descend by a nice road and in the afternoon we’ll arrive to Chikiska our first camping site, where we’ll rest this first night in our tents. the way we will observe, this day is very nice because you see the full change of the landscape from precipices to snowy mountains.
On this day we will pass the small settlements of La Colmena (2870m.a.s.l.), La Aguada (2915m.a.s.l.), Capuliyoc (2915 m.a.s.l.) impressive look out point where we can see all Apurimac Valley, Huayhuacalle (2970m.a.s.l.), Tinajayoc (2630 m.a.s.l.), Mirador (2370 m.a.s.l.), Cocamasana (2330m.a.s.l.), Torowisqana (2285 m.a.s.l.), Chiquiska (1950 m.a.s.l.).
After a healthy breakfast we’ll start to descend 40 minutes to the river bank where in the route we’ll see the difficult day is waiting because we’ll be able to see the zigzagging route we have to walk up, after crossing the footbridge we’ll start to walk up like 3 or 4 hours to arrive to Marampata, in this place you’ll see the nice scenary of the other side of the mountain, and you’ll see a piece of Choquequiraw, this is a nice place to take a rest as well and have lunch, after we have to walk other 1 or 2 hours more to arrive to Choquequirao camping site, there we’ll rest the second night, in the afternoon we can visit some places of the big Inka citadel. Choquequirao is considered as “The Last Refuge of the Inca Empire”. The oldest reports assign to Juan Arias Diaz as one of the first persons that explored the zone in 1710. Our bilingual guide will explain the history and importance of the site after the Spanish arrived to Peru. We will have our dinner in the camping site of Choquequiraw.
Early morning we’ll have breakfast to go terraces up to the main place of the Inka citadel, then you’ll have 2 hours guiding around the main sites, after you’ll have other one hour free to visit this place yourself, you can go to visit the highest part of this place, or the very popular Andean terraces with llamas shape on it, then we pack and start walking back to Chiquiska. On the way we can observe again Apurimac canyon, the exuberant vegetation and its variety of flowers and orchids. The time of the hike is about 6h. Altitude: 3033-1950 m.a.s.l. Passing the same small settlements as on the way up. We will stop in Playa Rosalina where we will have our lunch and after that we’ll continue to Chiquiska. Here we will spend the night on our campsite.
Early morning after breakfast (5:00 am), we continue to arrive to Cachora town. On the hike we can appreciate again the majestic Padrayoc snow-covered peak that decorate to Apurimac canyon The time of hike to arrive to Cachora is about 4 or 5 hours then we’ll take our bus to return to Cusco 7 pm.
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