This journey was brutal but absolutely worthwhile. Our guide, Ramiro, was very knowledgeable about Incan history, having studied anthropology at University. Very down to earth, poised, and well-respected by all staff and other tour group guides (nicknamed Â¨ProfessorÂ¨) Aside from any rote spiel, he gave us great perspective about the Inca Trail , life in Cusco, and cultural nuances which made for a very educational 4 day trip.
Words canÂ´t describe what youÂ´ll witness on this trek; panoramic scenes like out of the movies, being eye level with mountaintops and briefly relaxing on the trail, above the clouds. Trails hugging the mountain, with a nasty plummet a foot or two to your left or right. Once again, Ramiro, helped me remain calm and focused on not freaking out.
ThereÂ´s not much that can prepare your knees, quads and lungs for this assault. Get some training hikes done before you hit the trail, with an emphasis on endurance, and be in decent shape! I wish I trained longer for this; days 2 and 3 took a lot out of all of us. Bring some meds, in case you get altitude sickness, dehydration, or chills from the cold nights. In addition to muscle soreness, your feet, knees and hips will get pretty banged up. As long as youÂ´ve resigned yourself to the perils of the trek, and the departure from the comforts of civilization, youÂ´ll have a spectacular time. I was not accustomed to the rigors of this life, and it gave me a newfound respect for the porters who busted ass carrying our tents, food and supplies.
IÂ´d recommend Inca Trail Reservations with Ramiro, if you prefer traveling with a smaller group, and enjoy a more intimate educational experience (good student:teacher ratio).