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Maria Hernandez
Martes, 10 julio del 2012, 18:33 hrs.
Sr. Dante Valenzuela Mi esposo Pablo y yo Maria Alejandra quisieramos agradecerle a usted y a todo el personal de su agencia todas las atenciones, la calidez humana, buena organizacion y profesionalismo que hicieron de nuestro viaje al Peru una experiencia inolvidable. El cumplimiento en el itinerario fue muy puntual, los tours y los guias fueron maravillosos, la informacion que recibimos ........

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Trekking Routhes

Inca Trail to Machu Picchu | Trekking in the Cordillera Blanca
Llama Trek Olleros Chavin | Trekking in the Cordillera Huayhuash
Trekking in Colca Valley | The Salcantay Loop | Trekking beyond the mountains

Peru is a veritable paradise for hikers. Practically the entire highland spine of the country, including valleys, plains and massifs feature trekking circuits varying in degrees of difficulty.

Only a handful of these circuits have been commercially "discovered" as trekking routes. The rest remain relatively unexplored, awaiting all those who wish to retrace the magical roads through the Peruvian Andes, with its extraordinary network of pre-Colombian trails and more than 12,000 lakes. It is a land which features the world's deepest canyons, glaciers and snow-capped peaks, forests and thundering waterfalls, picturesque villages and above all, the most hospitable people imaginable.

Some trails are so steep they lead into breath-taking gorges, zig-zagging through the mountains, others straight as an arrow, fading into the distant desert horizon; hidden and invisible amongst the thick undergrowth of the Amazon jungle.

The trails of Peru offer endless possibilities, and many ideal combinations for hikers of all levels of experience. 

Inca Trail to Machu Picchu

Located in the department of Cuzco, the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu is Peru's most popular trekking route and possibly one of the most spectacular walks in the Americas. It forms part of the more than 23,000 km of roads built by the Incas across South America. Each year, some 25,000 hikers from all over the world walk the 43 km stone-paved trail, built by the Incas to get to the impregnable citadel of Machu Picchu, deep in the Cuzco cloud forest.

The trail sets out from Qorihuayrachina, at Kilometer 88 of the Cuzco-Quillabamba railway, and takes three to four days of tough hiking. The route runs through an impressive range of altitudes, where climates and eco-systems range from the high Andean plain down to the cloud forests. The trail climbs up through two highland passes (the higher of the two, Warmiwañuska, lies at 4,200 masl) before reaching Machu Picchu through the Inti Punku or Gateway of the Sun. One of the attractions of the trail is that it winds past carved granite Inca settlements (Wiñay Wayna, Phuyupatamarca), and is surrounded by breath-taking natural scenery. The forests abound in hundreds of species of orchids, brightly-colored birds and dream-like landscapes, the ideal complement to this indispensable hikers' route.

• Climate: Rainy during summer in the Southern Hemisphere (December-March). Sunny from May-September. Maximum temperatures reach 27° C, but rarely drop below 11° C.

• Access: The route starts out at Kilometer 88 of the railway. Organized groups set out from Chilca at Kilometer 76 of the same route.

• Services: Many tour operators sell all-in package deals for this trek. For those wishing to organize their own trip, porters from the communities of Chillca and Wayllabamba charge reasonable rates for carrying luggage.

• Hikers will need to carry drinking water and food, in addition to full camping equipment.


Trekking in the Cordillera Blanca

Located in the department of Ancash, the Cordillera Blanca is the world's highest tropical mountain range. It runs for 180 km from North-South and divides the western and eastern watersheds of the Andes. Every year, the Cordillera Blanca receives thousands of mountain climbers bent on climbing the snow-capped peaks or hiking through the spectacular landscapes. Almost the entire mountain chain is protected by the Huascaran National Park, an area home to 663 glaciers, 269 lakes and 41 rivers, in addition to 33 archaeological sites.

The Cordillera Blanca is riddled with countless trekking circuits. However, some of them have become world-famous: the route of the Quebrada Santa Cruz gully is possibly the most popular of all. The trek sets out from Cashapampa and ends up in the gorge of Quebrada Llanganuco, at the edge of the emerald-green waters of the Llanganuco lakes. The hike takes four to six days. Other popular circuits include the tour of Mount Alpamayo, a spectacular 12-day hike along the mountaintops; the Quebrada de los Cedros, a trail that gives visitors views of the mountains in the northern sector of the Huascaran Park during a four-day hike; Llanganuco-Portachuelo, a simple, day-and-a-half trek; and Quebrada Quilcayhuanca, which is gently sloping and lasts for two-and-a-half days.

• Climate: Heavy rains from December to March and a well-defined dry season, with sunny days and temperatures reaching 25° C, while nights are cold.

• Access: From the city of Huaraz, one can reach the towns of Carhuaz (32 km / 30 minutes), Yungay (39 km / 40 minutes) and Caraz (67 km / 50 minutes), all of them towns at the foot of the Cordillera Blanca range.

• Services: Nearby towns provide a full range of services. In the area of the Llanganuco lakes there is a campsite with some services.

• Visitors should go warmly dressed; in the evening, the cold is intense and the winds pick up.


Llama Trek Olleros Chavin

Located in the department of Ancash, this interesting and novel form of trekking is aimed at promoting eco-tourism in the region by reviving its traditional customs. The llama and alpaca, key pack animals in the Peruvian Andes, will captivate hikers on a tour of some of the most spectacular trails of the Cordillera Blanca and the Huascaran National Park.

The route sets out from the picturesque village of Olleros (30 km south of Huaraz), where the llamas are loaded up with the necessary gear for the trek. During the four-day hike, in addition to walking through breath-taking mountain scenery and taking in Mount Shaqsha (5,703 meters), Cashan (5,686 meters) and Tuctupunta (5,343 meters), hikers can take part in the customs and traditions of peasant farming communities such as Shongo (home to the imposing Huancas complex of sacred stone monoliths and Nunupata. The trail comes to an end at the vast Chavin de Huantar temple, an important administrative and ceremonial center of the first Pan-Andean pre-Colombian civilization.

• Climate: Heavy rains from December to March and a markedly dry season from May to October, where sunny days post temperatures of 25°C and freezing nights.

• Access: The community of Olleros lies 30 km from the city of Huaraz.

• Services: The towns of Chavin and Huari feature rustic hotels and restaurants.

• Travelers are advised to take plenty of warm clothing. The afternoons are cold and windy. 


Trekking in the Cordillera Huayhuash

Located in the department of Ancash, the Cordillera Huayhuash is held to be the world's least-known and most beautiful mountain ranges. It stretches across an area of 30 km, running from north to south, and is studded with a string of soaring peaks, including Mount Yerupaja and dozens of glacial lakes (Carhuacocha, Jahuacocha, Mitucocha, among others). The trekking circuit runs across the entire range and covers nearly 165 km in 12 days. The experts deem it one of the most spectacular trekking circuits on Earth.

The route -the only trail that circles the cordillera- sets out from the town of Chiquian (3,400 masl) and takes two days to reach the heart of the cordillera. Along the way, the trail runs through five high mountain passes and passes through picturesque farming and livestock herding villages such as Llamac, Pocpa, Huayllapa and Pacllon, bordering the mountains to the north, before following the eastern edge and completing the circuit on the west side. A shorter circuit (45 km) links Chiquian with Lake Jahuacocha, setting out from the villages of Llamac and Pocpa and returning through Pacllon.

Towering mountains, crystal-clear lakes, flocks of llamas and alpacas, hospitable people, and above all, Nature in all her unspoiled glory is the prize for those who venture to discover this unique circuit.

• Climate: Heavy rains from December to March and a markedly dry season from May to October, where sunny days post temperatures of 25°C and freezing nights.

• Access: The town of Chiquian is located some 360 km northeast of Lima and 50 km south of the Cordillera Blanca.

• Services: In the nearby villages of Llamac, Pocpa and Pacllon, one can hire guides and porters. Expeditions can also be organized from the nearby city of Huaraz. Chiquian also features several simple restaurants and lodgings. 


Trekking in Colca Valley

Located in the department of Arequipa, the Colca Valley covers a series of beautiful trekking circuits which have been recently discovered for adventure tourism. The area features a network of practically endless trails that wind through the mountains, linking lovely colonial villages. The area is also studded with beautiful lakes, bizarre stone formations formed by wind erosion and unique flora and fauna such as Andean condors, vicuñas, queñual forests and clumps of yareta plants. The main attraction of the area is without a doubt the chain of snow-capped volcanoes, some of them active: Mount Hualca Hualca (6,025 masl), Sabancaya (5,976 meters) and Ampato (6,288 meters), among others.

Since the time immemorial, the Colca has been home to the Collagua and Cabana tribes, descendants of the Pucara people of the southern highland plains and from the Quechua people of Cuzco, who proved to be skillful hydraulic engineers and master builders.

One of the most popular trekking routes in the Colca is the trail that links the town of Cabanaconde and Tapay in a circuit that takes two to three days and gives hikers views of impressive landscapes, Cabana towns such as Cosnihua and Malata, and many pre-Hispanic ruins.

• Climate: The rain season runs from December to March, while the best time to visit is from April to June. The climate is dry and sunny by day, with cold night. Average temperatures reach 20°C.

• Access: Located 150 km (around 4 hours) northeast of the city of Arequipa.

• Services: Both the city of Arequipa and the Colca Valley (the towns of Chivay and Yanque) one can hire the services of tour operators which offer organized package deals involving trekking or horseback riding. The area also features lodging and restaurants for every taste and budget. 


The Salcantay Loop

Located in the department of Cuzco, Mount Salkantay (6,271 masl) marks the culmination of a trekking circuit that combines majestic landscapes with the attraction of the world's most famous pre-Hispanic site: Machu Picchu and the Inca Trail.

The route starts out following the old Inca road carved into the rock and which leads to the citadel of Machu Picchu. The trail crosses through a high mountain pass between Mount Salkantay and Humantay (5,917 masl) before heading along the Acobamba River Canyon down to the archaeological site. The trail grant hikers extraordinary views of most of Cuzco's most beautiful mountains: Mount Wayanay (5,464 masl), Palcay (5,229 masl) and Wakay Willka or Veronica (5,750 masl), which soar above one side of the Urubamba River Valley.

• Climate: Rainy during the summer months (December-March). Sunny from May to September. Maximum temperatures reach 27° C, while minimum temperatures rarely drop below 11° C.

• Access: Like the Inca Trail, the route starts out at Km 88 of the railway. Organized groups set out from the town of Chilca at Km 76 of the same line.

• Services: There are trekking and adventure tourism companies that organize hikes along this circuit from their headquarters in the city of Cuzco.

• Hikers will need to take along drinking water and food, in addition to camping equipment.  


Trekking beyond the mountains
Trekking is not just about mountains and rugged terrain. Some parts of the Peruvian coast combine the vast and apparently empty desert with the jagged coastline to create extraordinarily beautiful natural scenarios for hikers. One such spot is the Paracas desert south of Lima and Bayovar, in the northern department of Piura.

On the other side of the Andes, along the steep eastern slopes, drenched by the constant rains from the Amazon plains, spreads the cloud forest. This land of impenetrable forests is believed to be the last refuge for a unique wildlife (orchids, bromeliads and tree-born ferns) and unique species on the verge of extinction (the spectacled bear, the dwarf deer and the yellow-tailed choro monkey). This area formed part of the vast and complex network of pre-Colombian roads that linked the highlands to the jungle. One of these routes leads to Kuelap, the Chachapoyas fortress deep in the jungle department of Amazonas.

Other fascinating routes in the eastern Andes include the trails that descend to the east of Cuzco and Puno, and make up spectacular, little-known circuits for trekking enthusiasts.

Paracas: The peninsula and bay of Paracas, in the department of Ica, is criss-crossed by countless trails which make for first-rate trekking circuits. Plains of yellow saltpetre, shifting sand dunes and extraordinarily rich fishing grounds are the stomping ground for vast flocks of marine bird species and sea lions, which have created a unique environment along the Peruvian coast.

Bayovar: The far north of Peru is home to Bayovar and its unspoiled beaches, a natural treasure of the department of Piura. Deep ravines, carved out by rivers long since dried up but which every 50 years spring to life to violently reshape the landscape; forests of twisted carob trees; flocks of migratory birds and a windswept desert are just some of the area's attractions.



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Lima | Historic Center | Caral | Cusco | Machu Picchu | Inca Trail | Salcantay | Choquequirao | Puno
Titicaca Lake
| Arequipa | Colca Canyon | Nazca Lines | Nazca | Paracas Reserve | Ballestas Islands
Sipan Lord | Puerto Maldonado | Manu | Tambopata| Candamo | Iquitos | Pacaya Samiria | Tarapoto | Huaraz

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