Although it’s still little known, the Ausangate Trek is one of Cusco’s best options for trekking lovers. It’s a journey through the slopes of the most important sacred mountain south of Cusco: the Apu Ausangate (6,372 masl/ 20,900 fasl). You’ll visit remote Andean towns, enjoy relaxing thermal baths and photograph the turquoise glow of beautiful crystalline lagoons. If you’re passionate about mountain hiking and are looking for an intense experience in remote areas, this package is perfect for you.
Apu Ausangate is the most sacred mountain deity in the Cusco region, deserving much respect, reverence, and pilgrimages and offerings. It stands majestically at 6,372 meters (20,905 ft) and is Peru’s second-highest peak. This hike takes you over mountain passes, incredible mountain scenery, remote Andean villages, hot springs, and turquoise lakes.
This unforgettable hike is recommended for mountain trekking lovers searching for an intense experience in remote areas and wild nature.
We’ll start our adventure very early. We’ll pick you up from your hotel at 5:00 am and we’ll go in a private vehicle to the city of Urcos, capital of the province of Quispicanchi. On the way we’ll be able to observe picturesque towns and beautiful lagoons along the Vilcanota Valley. We’ll continue to the town of Ocongate and then towards Tinque where you can make your last minute purchases before we reach the community of Upis (3,799 masl / 12,464 fasl), the starting point of our walk. After breakfast, our first day begins on a plain that looks directly at the immense Ausangate glacier (6,300 masl / 20,900 fasl). You can concentrate and feel the emotion that this great mass of snow provokes in your heart. As we move forward, we’ll meet local people wearing their beautiful and colorful traditional clothes. Herds of llamas and alpacas will also accompany our steps. We’ll arrive at the thermal baths of Upis (4,198 masl / 13,776 fasl) to enjoy our lunch. Here our camp will be waiting for you, right in front of the Apu Ausangate. In the afternoon, we’ll have time to relax, immerse ourselves in the delicious thermal waters of the place (S / 10.00 extra), and contemplate the sunset that will fill the perpetual snows of the glaciers around us with colors.
We’ll savor a delicious breakfast in the middle of the cold of the high mountains and then begin our walk in a beautiful high Andean valley towards the Arapa pass, always accompanied by the spectacular Ausangate mountain. From the top of the pass (4,798 masl / 15,744 fasl) the beauty of the landscape multiplies. You’ll be able to observe the size of the mountain range and, if you’re lucky, the solemn flight of the condor. Our guide will explain a little more about the impressive local flora and fauna. Then we’ll begin to descend and will run into the beauty of the crystalline multi-colored lagoons of Yanacocha (black lagoon) and Pukacocha (red lagoon), as well as several waterfalls. Later, we’ll arrive at our camp where, after an excellent meal, you’ll have time to take a reenergizing nap. In the afternoon, we can explore the vicinity of the lakes and drink a delicious tea. Obviously, before you go to sleep, a nutritious dinner awaits you.
Like every morning, you’ll regain all your energy thanks to a delicious breakfast. Today’s hike begins ascending for 2 or 3 hours to the Apuchata pass (4,900 masl / 16,076 fasl). From there, the immensity of the mountains surpasses all expectations. We’ll continue the route downhill for 1.5 hours to the Ausangate Qocha lagoon. You’ll have the opportunity to enjoy your lunch in the middle of a prodigious landscape. Later, we’ll ascend 2 hours until we reach the Palomani pass (5,100 masl / 16,732 fasl). After a short rest, we’ll walk along the last section of the day to the small community of Huchuy Phinaya where our camp will already be set up. We has a lot of respect and consideration for the people of Huchuy Phinaya. Learn from them and their admirable lifestyle in complete connection with Mother Nature (Pachamama). After a delicious dinner, a peaceful night’s sleep awaits you.
After breakfast, we’ll begin our 4-hour uphill walk towards our lunch spot in the beautiful green lagoon of Qomercocha. There, during the month of August, special rituals dedicated to the Apu Ausangate and the Pachamama, or Mother Earth, are performed where the Andean priests ask for their energy to heal the surrounding communities. We’ll pass the Q’ampa pass (5,000 masl / 16,404 fasl) from where you can appreciate the detail of several snow-covered mountains before reaching Qomercocha. After lunch we’ll continue walking for 2 hours to the community of Pacchanta (4,000 masl / 13,000 fasl) where you’ll not only be able to enjoy the hot springs (price not included in the package), but will also get to know several traditions that have been kept alive generation after generation. We’ll spend the night here, in our camp, after satisfying our bodies with the delicious dinner.
The final day has come. Before leaving, we’ll perform a small ceremony of gratitude to the Pachamama and the surrounding mountains, especially the great Apu Ausangate. After our breakfast we’ll start a 2 hour walk to Tinqui where a van will wait for us to take us back to the city of Cusco. Enjoy the company of mountains and lagoons during the journey. We will take you to the door of your hotel with an approximate arrival time of 5:00 pm.
We want to make your trip to Peru as memorable and as easy as possible. In this section, you will find speedy answers to all those questions you had about Ausangate Trek in one place. Please read the following information carefully – it will help you with any questions about our services.
Has another question that we haven’t answered here? Drop us a line, and we will get back to you asap!
All information meetings are held in your hotel at 6:00 p.m., one night before the tour begins. If you cannot attend, you must coordinate another time at the (Peru Hike) offices. These meetings last approximately 30 to 45 minutes and there you will be given a small duffel bag, in which you’ll put all the belongings you intend to bring on the trek that won’t be in your day pack.
ou’ll receive a canvas case or duffel bag during your briefing. The porters will take them on the way and will deliver them to you when you get to each camp. They measure 66 cm / 2 ft. Long x 36 cm / 1 ft. Wide.
A maximum of 5 kg is allowed for each duffel bag that includes the weight of your sleeping bag, mat, clothes and other personal items.
The trek has to be paid for in full by at least 7.30 pm two days before departure. For example, if your tour departs on a Wednesday, then you must come to our office before 7.30 pm on Monday.
It would be much appreciated if you pay the trek balance in cash US dollars or local currency. You can withdraw some money from several ATMs along Avenida Sol (either in US dollars or local Peruvian Soles). You can pay by credit card or PAYPAL online, but you will have to pay an 8% service charge, charged by VISA and PAYPAL. We do not accept bank checks or payment of the balance by traveler’s checks.
Of course! During the travel, your main luggage can be stored at our office(you can organize briefing day or by email) or at your hotel, both free of charge.
Any equipment that you are not going to need on the trek can be stored safely in your hotel. Nearly every hotel will provide this service. Don’t leave items of value with your bags, put them in the hotel safe and obtain an itemized receipt (In the unlikely case of theft many insurance companies require that you have a copy of the receipt itemizing all the items). Best put items such as credit cards inside a sealed, signed envelope for extra peace of mind.
Peru Hike Company can pick you up from your hotel, as long as it’s in the Historic Center of Cusco. The pickup time will be coordinated with your guide in the briefing. The pickup time may vary between 30 and 45 minutes due to traffic. Cusco is a very old city, therefore, it has many narrow cobbled streets. Some hotels and Airbnbs may be located on streets without access to cars or on long, steep slopes, making it difficult to transport luggage. We strongly recommend that you book accommodation with good access.
Group tours are made up of different types of people. Physical conditions and ages can vary. By agreeing to be part of a group tour, you also accept that some people may be faster or slower than you. Therefore, each person can go at their own pace on the route. It may be the case that a group wishes to modify the tour; however, it will be the guide who decides, after consulting with all the participants, if said modifications can be made.
Strikes and demonstrations are usually frequent in Peru and this may interrupt some of our tours. Roads can be blocked and train tracks can be taken over. However, we will try to keep your excursion as planned, even if it means leaving the night before the scheduled date. Under these circumstances, tours may also be cancelled. In case of changes or cancellations, all situations will be coordinated with you by our operations department. Your safety is our highest priority and our decisions will be made to protect it.
You’re responsible for your objects during the tour. Please pay attention to where you leave your things and remember to take everything once you leave our trucks, tents, or restaurants.
Here are some other options that will suit your needs