It is referred to as the ‘Royal Highway’. The Inca Trail is 160 kilometers long and you can start at many different points. This means you can choose whether you want to walk for two, three, four or seven days. The three-day trip is the most popular. You cross two mountain passes, one of which is 4,100 meters high. The air is thin, but the view is amazing.

The short version is ‘only’ 43 kilometers long. The trail leads past important archaeological sites of the Incas. They include Runcuracay, Sayacmarca, Phuyupatamarca, Winay Wayna and of course Machu Picchu. You can walk the entire route, but also choose a part of it.

Note: You can only walk the route under the guidance of renowned trekking organisations. They have a license and you need to secure your booking in advance.

If you really want to learn more about the life of the Incas, you should take the longer route. The trek departs from Cuzco, but you can join the track further along as well. On this route you will pass the Inca tunnels and the ruins of Ollantaytambo, which was where one of the final battles between the Incas and Spaniards took place.

Keep an eye out for the ruins of ancient outposts, and enjoy the various villages you walk through. It is possible to hire a private guide and/or bearers, or packing horses. Make sure you book well in advance, as spaces are limited.

More information: www.incatrailperu.com

Hiking