The Inca Trail (Camino Inca in Spanish), a 50-km (31-mi) sector of the stone path that once extended from Cusco to Machu Picchu, is one of the world´s signature outdoor excursions. Nothing matches the sensation of walking over the ridge that leads to the Lost City of the Inca just as the sun casts its first yellow glow over the ancient stone buildings.
Though the journey by train is the easiest way to get to Machu Picchu, most travelers who arrive via the Inca Trail wouldn´t have done it any other way. There are limits on the number of trail users, but you´ll still see a lot of fellow trekkers along he way. The four-day treks takes you past ruibs and through stunning scenery, starting in the thin air of the highlands and ending in cloud forests. The orchids, hummingbirds, Andean condors, and spectacular mountains aren´t bad either.
Leave the stress of one side that is about to plan your vacation in 2020. Almost nothing is needed to close the computer and feel the maximum pleasure of being on a trip, the 2020 season of the Inca Trail is approaching!
Inca Trail 2020
Classic Inca Trail – 4 Days: it is the most famous of all, receives visitors from around the world every day. Includes 3 nights of camping in the mountainous heights, almost 50 kilometers of walking in total (which means a daily average of 12.5 km), reaching heights of up to 4,200 meters. You will also have guided tours to impressive Inca archaeological sites. The displacement happens crossing impressive Andean and jungle landscapes, until visiting Machu Picchu. Recommended for those who wish a total immersion in nature and away from urban life.
Short Inca Trail – 2 Days: it also has huge daily demand. But unlike the Classic, it can be said that it has a 60/40 ratio of classic and walking tourism, respectively. On the first day there is a walk of about 6 hours and then you will arrive at Aguas Calientes (town at the foot of Machu Picchu), where you will find all the urban amenities: restaurants and bars, spas, museums, hotels, craft markets, the famous baths thermal and more. The second day is the extraordinary tour to Machu Picchu (duration approximately 2 and a half hours), with the afternoon free to continue enjoying Aguas Calientes. Ideal for those who wish to have the experience but in a shorter and more comfortable way.
Note: if you wish to choose one of these versions in your 2020 holidays, you must book as soon as possible. Why? Officially Inca Trail booking begin in October but most of the tickets have already been booked much earlier.
Why is the demand high?
Most travelers do not know the limit of 500 permits / day on the 4 Day Inca Trail. In addition, most travelers do not know that this limit applies not only to hikers who enter the trail every day, but also to all the required support personnel: guides, cooks and porters.
To preserve the integrity of this famous part, which the Incas called Qhapaq Ñan, no pack animals are allowed along most of the Inka Trail 4 Days. Therefore, we must trust people (support staff) to help us carry camping gear, food, sleeping and cooking supplies. Better known as chaskis, in ancient times and recognized by the speed along the roads to transmit messages across the vast expanse of the Inca Empire, the support staff is vital for the operation of hikes on the Inca Trail.
Due to this regulation, the permits required for any group of hikers, require double or even triple the permits (of the number of hikers) only for support staff.
Now that you know the reason behind the great demand of the Inca Trail, you may feel a greater need to reserve your income earlier so that you do not have problems later.
The beginning of the 2020 season of the Inca Trail
As every year, thousands of travelers worldwide are looking forward to the start of the season of this exciting trek. This time, the month of March 2020 marks the beginning of the Inca Trail trekking, ending in January of 2021.
During this season, up to 500 people will be admitted for the 4-day Classic Inca Trail and 250 people in the 2-day short version. It should be noted that the high season runs from May to October. This coincides with the dry season in the Andean zone of Peru.
Inca Trail 2020 – High Demand Versions
These packages have greater availability than the previous ones, but it is also recommended to choose in advance for your 2019 holidays. They are the Inca Jungle trek (4 Days), the Lares Trek (4 Days) and Salkantay Trek (5 Days). Why choose any of them? The first one is very varied, includes a vertiginous mountain biking on day 1 (optional) and mix nature hike with walking tours through Inca ruins and typical towns, nights in basic lodgings.
The second includes the relaxing thermal baths of Lares on day 1 in the morning and then high mountain walking, 2 nights of camping to get close and reach Aguas Calientes / Machu Picchu on days 3 and 4. Finally, the Salkantay Trek, the more demanding and challenging of the Andes, a total of approximately 80 kilometers of march, with camping nights in mountainous plains and very varied activities.