The Sacred Valley is an ideal destination for Adventure tours. With mountainous landscapes lined by ancient pathways, it’s the starting point for incredible hiking and trekking options like the Inca Trail, Lares, or Salkantay treks. White-water raft on the Urubamba river, zipline across canyons, or stay overnight at a hotel that you can only get to by rock-climbing. Talk to your Inca Expert travel advisor about how to add additional adventure excursions into your tour of the Sacred Valley.
Our Inca Expert travel advisors will help you plan a trip that is perfectly tailored to your interests and preferences.
The Amazon Rainforest is the largest jungle in the world. You’ll see species of plants, birds, fish, mammals, and insects as you relax in a comfortable all-inclusive lodge near the Tambopata Research Center in Puerto Maldonado. Luxury Amazon River cruises from Iquitos are an alternative option for jungle exploration done in style.
Hike the famous Inca Trail to the Sun Gate at Machu Picchu. This 26-mile hike through idyllic Peruvian landscapes only permits 500 people per day, so talk with your Inca Expert travel advisor today to book in advance.
Visit Cusco, the capital of the Inca Empire and gateway to Machu Picchu. Tour through historical sights and Inca temples or delight in gourmet food at some of the top restaurants in Cusco.
Lake Titicaca is a cultural and natural wonder in Peru. For impressive sunsets, a visit to the Uros and Taquile floating islands, and relaxing luxury hotels, head to Lake Titicaca.
The Sacred Valley has unending sites to behold and things to do. Visit the Maras Salt Mines, Ollantaytambo ruins, Pisac market, begin the Inca Trail, or simply relax at your scenic Sacred Valley hotel with unmissable views.
It’d be a mistake to miss out on Lima’s top restaurants and UNESCO World Heritage sites. The capital city is home to the most exclusive restaurant in Peru: Central. You can also tour through museums, art galleries, and more in the vibrant city of Lima.
The mysterious Nazca Lines are giant geoglyphs drawn into the desert floor. Soar above them to see the hummingbird, the astronaut, the spider, and many more!
Arequipa is a refreshing mix of colonial architecture, Peruvian history, and natural beauty. Visit the historical center, Santa Catalina Monastery, or various lookout points in the city for views of El Misti Volcano. Then, spot Andean condors soaring through Colca Canyon as you continue your tour through scenic Peru.
"It exceeded my expectations and I loved the people I met there. The hikes were so well organized, food was amazing, and the guides were super caring even getting the cooks to make a cake for me on my birthday on the Lares trek."
Traveled to: Lima, Cusco, Lares, Machu Picchu, Rainbow Mountain
"Based on the trip you organized, the historical knowledge, the people, the food, the culture and the natural beauty of Peru, it was simply the best trip I’ve ever taken. This trip will forever be in my memory."
Traveled to: Lima, Puerto Maldonado, Cusco, Sacred Valley, Lares Trek, Machu Picchu
"We wouldn’t stop talking about how well executed and planned everything was. I personally loved the Inca trail addition and I am so glad you gave that to us as an option. The hike to Huayna Picchu was also a group favorite."
Natasha Mehta & friends
NY & PA, USA
Traveled to: Cusco, Lares + 2-day Inca Trail Trek, Machu Picchu
"All in all we had an absolutely amazing time and the trip completely blew my expectations out of the water. The hotels were all fabulous with beautiful views. Thank you sincerely for the trip of a lifetime!"
Traveled to: Lima, Paracas, Cusco, Machu Picchu, Sacred Valley
"Our trip to Peru was nothing short of magnificent. As for our favorite part, we loved it all. Machu Picchu was everything we thought it would be and more. We had a wonderfully successful trip to Peru!"
Traveled to: Amazon, Sacred Valley, Machu Picchu, Cusco
40-50% of travelers experience minor symptoms of altitude sickness, also known as Acute Mountain Sickness, like shortness of breath, fatigue, and dizziness when traveling in high altitude destinations in Peru such as on the Inca Trail, Arequipa, and the Sacred Valley. Symptoms of altitude sickness generally alleviate after 24-48 hours in altitude. Best practices for minimizing its impact on your trip include taking the time to acclimate, drinking lots of water, resting, avoiding alcohol, and eating light non-fatty foods upon arrival at altitude.
Consult with your doctor before traveling to high altitude destinations.
The altitude in the Sacred Valley is approximately 8,000 feet (2,400 meters) above sea level while Cusco city sits at 11,150 feet (3,399 meters) above sea level. Giving a difference of 3,150 feet (960 meters) between the two destinations with Cusco being higher in altitude than the Sacred Valley.
1-2 days. As you make your way from Cusco to Machu Picchu, you’ll pass through the Sacred Valley. We recommend an overnight stay in the Sacred Valley to take advantage of the breathtaking mountain scenery from one of the top Sacred Valley hotels. Many wish they had even more time here.
Apart from the incredible natural vistas of the Urubamba River and mountain range, the Sacred Valley is home to many unmissable sites. Top-sites in the Sacred Valley include the enigmatic concentric circles of Moray, the Maras Salt Flats, Ollantaytambo Ruins, Pisac Ruins, and Pisac Market.
Ollantaytambo town is a small Andean town without any 5-star accommodations. It’s perfect for those looking for fewer amenities and more authenticity, those who want to wander Ollantaytambo town and market on their off-time, and those who don’t plan to spend more than one night.
A short drive outside of Ollantaytambo town are magazine-worthy hotels on large-scale properties that house all the amenities you would need for your stay without even needing to leave the hotel property. From beautiful to down-right luxurious, your Inca Expert travel advisor is likely to recommend a night in one of these properties.
Sometimes included in definitions of the Sacred Valley, the ruins of Machu Picchu are located 33 miles (53 km) west of what is generally considered its center.
The train journey from Ollantaytambo train station in the Sacred Valley to Machu Picchu is ~1 hour and 50 minutes.
The Sacred Valley is 45-miles (72km) outside of Cusco. The train journey from Cusco train station to Ollantaytambo train station is ~1 hour and 30 minutes. A private transfer will take ~1 hour and 30 minutes (depending on traffic). Your private Sacred Valley tour with Inca Expert will take ~6 hours from pick up in Cusco to drop-off at your Sacred Valley hotel.
The Sacred Valley is the perfect stop for those who are concerned about the effects of altitude sickness. At only 8,000 feet above sea level (compared to Cusco’s 11,150 feet) acclimatizing your body in the Sacred Valley upon arrival will be more gradual, though some minor symptoms of altitude sickness are still possible.
If you prefer to have ample culinary, shopping, and nightlife options, the city of Cusco would be the better place to stay upon arrival. Consult with your doctor about whether altitude medicine may work for you if you’d prefer to stay in bustling Cusco.