For those looking for a unique experience through the Peruvian highlands, we can assure you that Cusco is the most diverse yet complete travel destination in our country. In addition to the vast historical and cultural value of the so-called Imperial City, Cusco also gathers natural wonders where you can practice extreme sports without having to leave to another city.
Undoubtedly, even the most adventurous travelers get captivated by the many things to do in the famous region. Likewise, you can complement the adventure with historical monuments or even more days in the Peruvia wilderness before reaching your so-desired destination.
Nowadays, Cusco receives over 3.5 million tourists per year, making it one of the most visited regions in Peru and potentially South America. However, you must be thinking that maybe it is because it’s home to one of the New 7 Wonders of the World, but here we are to tell you that there’s so much about Cusco that most people don’t know about.
Among the many things to do in Cusco, the most sought after activities are trekking and camping, mainly because you can trek to the famous Inca Citadel, while on the way getting immersed in the exuberant nature of the region.
However, there are even more natural wonders where snow-capped mountains, otherworldly lagoons, and colorful mounts could certainly be the highlight of your trip through Peru. To help you decide even better, here we’ve gathered some of the attractions we offer in our travel packages:
1. One-Day Hikes
- Rainbow Mountain: Located in the heart of the Vilcanota mountain range lies a natural masterpiece that was hidden in plain sight for centuries. Currently, the so-called Vinicunca mountain is one of the most in-demand attractions within the region of Cusco.
The particular coloration of the mountain made viral months before its official opening to tourism, as well as the Red Valley that lies just behind it. However, this is not the only “painted mountain” in Peru since there are two more that were recently discovered with natural landscapes just as privileged as this one. For further information about the Rainbow Mountains in Peru, please check this travel guide.
- Humantay Lagoon: The water bodies in the Peruvian highlands are certainly beautiful, but the Humantay Lake stands out from the rest due to its authentic emerald-like coloration produced by the microalgae and the concentration of minerals in its waters.
The Humantay Lagoon is located at 4,200 meters above sea level, flanked by a towering snow-capped mountain. The dream-like scenery is situated 120 kilometers away from the city of Cusco in the Soraypampa town.
It takes about 2 hours to get to this lagoon, the trek is considered to be quite challenging but totally worth it. For those going on the Salkantay trek, this is the first natural wonder they visit. Learn more about the Humantay Lake with this travel guide.
2. Multiple-Day Treks with Camping Options
- Salkantay Trek: This famous snow-capped mountain is located within the Vilcabamba mountain range in the Peruvian Andean region at 6,264 meters above sea level, making it one of Peru’s highest peaks.
According to historians, the name Salkantay means “Wild Mountain” in Quechua, it was a sacred mount for the Incas since they granted it recognition as one of their Apus, which were spiritual protectors of their people and nature.
Only a few have reached its summit, being the swiss Bronimann and Marx, the first documented persons who climbed this imposing snow-capped mountain. However, later in 1978, the Italian mountaineer Consuelo Bonadiel was the first woman to climb all the way up to the Salkantay’s summit.
The Salkantay trek to Machu Picchu passes by several ecosystems and natural wonders, including this marvelous snow-capped mountain before reaching the famous Inca Sanctuary. The famous trail is considered the best alternative to the Inca Trail; if you wish more information, please check this travel guide.
- Ausangate Trek: Right at the heart of the Vilcanota mountain range lies the 6th highest peak of Peru, the Ausangate Mountain. The famous snow-capped mountain is located 100 kilometers away from Cusco and can be visualized from Sacsayhuaman and even from the Rainbow Mountain since it is located just in front of it.
The so-called Apu of the Andes is surrounded by beautiful water bodies, intriguing stone forests, and glaciers which complement the whole scenery as a paradise on earth. Also, the Andean mysticism covers the entire region, where ancestral traditions, ceremonies, and the legacy of the Incas remains in the heart of the surrounding villages.
Certainly, the views along the Ausangate path are uncomparable. For those up to his challenge an incredible scenery awaits to be discovered. If you’re interested in taking this adventure, keep in mind that the trek has a moderate to challenging difficulty since you’ll be hiking through altitudes over 4,200 meters above sea level.
It takes from 4 to 5 days to complete the trek, therefore, you must be prepared for this physically demanding activity. For more information about the Ausangate Trek, please consult with our local expert team.
If you’re looking for a more extreme adventure, we also have activities that take you on a bike ride through the exuberant nature of the Cusco region. For those who didn’t know, there are some companies that offer adventure activities such as:
- Mountain Biking
- Zip Lining
- White-Water Rafting
- Rock Climbing
However, we highly recommend you do proper research so you can select a certified tour operator compliant with all the safety regulations. Please note that Viagens Machu Picchu does not organize any of these activities.
Cusco offers the best scenery to go horseback riding across the countryside, especially between May and July, where the climate is dry but the valleys and mountains have a spellbinding greenish coloration that goes as far as the eye can see.
If you wish to include a horseback riding activity in your Cusco itinerary, just let us know. We have excursions through the outskirts of Cusco, as well as in the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Allow us to take you though time in-style and with uniqueness on an adventure through the most beautiful natural landscapes of the Cusqueñan region.
If you’re looking for a more adrenaline-filled experience, then you must visit the Action Valley Adventure Park, the first adventure park in the city of Cusco. On this opportunity, you could choose either doing bungee jumping from over 140 meters of height or getting catapulted to the sky in the slingshot adventure.
The Action Valley was founded in 2002 by two national champions in Bungee Jumping and Paragliding. The site counts top-quality safety systems and equipment. They look to promote adventure, mysticism, and tourism in each of their activities.
Important Note: As mentioned before, we do not operate nor organize any of these activities. Therefore, if you want to join any of these experiences, you will have to do this on your own. Keep in mind that it is worth knowing about the tour company before proceeding with the reservation.
Viagens Machu Picchu cares to provide everything you need to have an authentic and safe adventure through our country. Get to know all the special offers we have in Peru travel packages and start planning the trip of your life!