It is another “lost city of the Incas” officially rediscovered at the end of the 20th century, located at 3,050 m.s., high on a mountain at almost 1,750 m. above the mighty Apurímac River, fed by glaciers and surrounded by the Salkantay and Humantay imposing snowy peaks.
The fortress of Choquequirao is located in the area of Vilcabamba, where the Incas of the Manco dynasty resisted for 36 years (1536 – 1572) the Spanish conquerors, who never managed to expel them from it.
The construction of Choquequirao is the work of the successors of the Inca Pachacútec, Túpac Inca Yupanqui (1471 – 1493) and Huayna Cápac (1493 – 1527). In the place domestic ceramic and ceremonial of the classic style was used cuzqueño, and also of others, own of the population that moved to construct and to populate the place of permanent way, probably agriculturists experienced in constructing and to explode the agricultural platforms in zones of eyebrow jungle.
Approximately 40% of the Inca ceremonial center of Choquequirao is vegetation-free and restoration and valorization work is currently underway. The remaining area is formed by a complex system of terraces built on extremely steep slopes. Recently an impressive staircase of 180 platforms has been located that descending from one of the flanks of the ceremonial center reaches the river, where it is possible to swim.
Choquequirao was possibly one of the control points of entry to the Vilcabamba region, and as such an administrative nucleus with political, social and economic functions. In its urban conception it followed the symbolic patterns of the imperial capital with places of worship dedicated to the Sun, ancestors, land, water and other divinities, royal residences, houses of administrators and craftsmen, warehouses, large buildings for bedrooms or kallancas and agricultural terraces of the Inca and the town. The ceremonial area extends over 700 meters, with a difference in level of up to 65 meters between the main square and the higher parts.
The complex is made up of nine stone architectural groups and a system of 180 platforms, apart from the areas of residential, administrative, artisan, irrigation systems, among other buildings built on a stone base.
The sectors that are defined by the topography of the place had different functions and were communicated by means of pedestrian accesses to the main square. You can see a complex hydraulic system probably designed for domestic, ceremonial and agricultural use.
Taking into account the geographical location of Choquequirao, compared to other complexes of the same period, it seems that it had the function of being an Inca enclave towards the hot valleys of the Apurímac River. Its inhabitants engaged in intensive agriculture and held ceremonies where water was an important element of worship. In addition, it was a storage place for various products from other areas, as well as a connection point between the valleys of Apurímac, Vilcabamba and Vilcanota.
Day 01: Cusco – Capuliyoc – Santa Rosa Village
We leave from Cusco at 5:00 am in the morning arriving to Curawasi town at 08:30 am roughly where we are going to enjoy our first breakfast (No included PEN 10.00), subsequently we wil continue in our van directly to Capuliyoc Village arriving like 10:30 a.m. (2,850 m.a.s.l.) where here will be our hiking point to go to Choquequirao, likewise al our staff like muleters ans mules will be waiting us.
From this view point, we can observe 02 majestics snow peaks mountains as Padrayoc and Wayna Cachora, subsequently we start to hike down for about 03 hours to get the Chikiska (1,900 m.a.s.l.) place to enjoy our lunch, afterwards we continue walking down for 01 more hour to get the Apurimac river (1,450 m.a.s.l.) here we enjoy the view of the valley, we take photos and much more.
Then we start to walk up for about 03 more hours to reach our next place for camping, Santa Rosa Village (1,900 m.a.s.l.) and we enjoy here our first dinner.
The approximate time of the hiking is about 08 hours
Day 02: Santa Rosa – Marampata Site – Choquequirao
We wake up early morning (5:00 am) after breakfast, we continue our hike going up to Marampata (2,850 m.a.s.l.) arriving like 08.00 a.m. place where we are going to get our breakfast, then we leave all our staff, then we continue hiking 02 more hours to get our aim; Choquequirao archaeological Site, arriving at 10:30 a.m.
Here we will spend our time until 16:00 p.m. hours to observe the three levels of the excavated ruin, where we can appreciate houses, terraces and other parts of this late Inca-town, like the ruin in progress of excavation and finally areas unexplored that can tell us about this last refuge of the oppressed inca empire, likewise depending of the weather we can appreciate “the flight of the Condors”
In the afternoon we will enjoy our lunch into the inca site of Choquequirao, because our cooks will bring our lunch and not waste time returning to the camp to have lunch, the idea is to be more hours in choquequirao.
At 16:00 pm we start to return to Marampata (2,850 m.a.s.l.) for our next camping site, dinner and rest.
Day 03: Marampata Site – Chiquiska – Capuliyoc
After an early breakfast, we pack and start walking back to Chiquiska (1,900 m.a.s.l.) at 7:00 a.m. , on the way, we can observe again Apurimac canyon, here we may be lucky to appreciate the flight of the Condors, the exuberant vegetation and its variety of flowers and orchids..
We arrive to Chikiska at 11:00 a.m. roughly, rest and then once our lunch is ready we enjoy it.
After that, 13:30 p.m. we will continue with our trekking to reach Capuliyoc Village, arriving like 16:300 p. m. where we will spend the last night on our campsite after enjoyed our last lunch.
Day 04: Capuliyoc Village – Cusco
Last day at 7:00 a.m. we get our last breakfast, then at 08:00 a.m. average we still walk for about 02 more hours to reach the population of Cachora, where our transportation will be waiting for all our group to come back to Cusco, once we get on the Van we will take a van trip for about 04 more hours to arrive to Cusco city, and finally at 14:00 p.m. you will be drop off nearby of the main square of Cusco.
- Transportation to Capuliyoc
- English – Spanish guide
- 02 liter water (First day only)
- Cooking equipment
- Daily tea service
- Duffle Bag ( To carry your stuff 06 Kg on our horses)
- Dining equipment including chairs and tables
- Food service in the campsites (03 breakfast, 03 lunches, 03 dinners)
- Vegetarian food (Optional)
- Camping Tent for two persons only
- Horseman and Horses
- First-aid kit
- Emergency oxygen bottle
- Extra Expenses
- First Breakfast
- Last Lunch and dinner
- Single tents available for extra cost (USD $ 80.00 for the entire trip)
- Walking sticks (02 poles USD $15.00 for the entire trip)
- Sleeping bags (USD $20 for the entire trip)
- Original Passport and Original Green ISIC international student cards if you are students.
- Water-resistant trekking shoes and sandals
- Warm clothing (thermal underwear, fleece, hat, gloves, socks)
- Waterproof clothing (poncho)
- Synthetic or cotton clothing (socks, trousers, shorts, t-shirts)
- Sunhat and sunglasses
- Sun cream and insect repellent
- 01 Water bottle to refill water or you just can buy water on the tour
- Water purifying tablets (Micropur recommended)
- Toiletries (towel, soap, brush, toothpaste, toilet paper …)
- Personal medication
- Camera and films
- Torch with spare batteries (flashlight) we recommend headlights
- Extra contribution suggested in soles money for tipping porters, cook and guide and for any emergency.
- Hiking Poles
- Personal snacks
- Previous acclimatization in Cuzco city, for at least 2 days and general good health.
Very important to inquire for travel date availability:
- Group Service price (04 people Minimum) !! $ 289.00 USD per person
- Private Service (03 people) !! $ 379.00 USD per person
- Private Service (02 people) !! $ 439.00 USD per person