Inka Quarry Hike 3 Days / 2 Nights
The Soqma Hike is a new route that MamaCoca Expeditions is excited to offer! This hike starts in a remote village and then takes you up through the mountains, passing an enormous 60 meter waterfall and visiting an ancient Inca archaeological site. We hike higher into the Andes Mountains until we reach our campsite where we are awarded a spectacular view of the Urubamba mountain range which features beautiful snow-capped peaks. The next day we make our way down, passing more Inca sites including the quarry where the Incas brought the stones for Ollantaytambo. After hiking in the mountains for two days we finish the tour with a visit to the one and only Machu Picchu!
Perfect for: Travelers looking for a short but challenging hike that includes unique Inca sites and the best views of the Andes Mountains.
Duration: 3 days/2 nights
Level: Moderate to difficult, depending on fitness level
Limited Spaces: This hike does not require permits so there is always availability, however, it is best to reserve your hike in advance to secure the Machu Picchu entrances and the best train tickets.
Acclimatization: There is one pass at 4,470 meters (14,665 feet), so it is essential that you are well acclimatized to the altitude before beginning the hike. We recommend that you spend at least 2 days in Cusco and the surrounding area before starting to properly acclimatize.
We will pick you up from your hotel in Cusco at 6:00 am and then will drive for about 1 hour and a half to the small town of Soqma that is hidden in the mountains and sits at 3,200 m (10,500 ft). We will then start our hike up the mountain which will take about 4-5 hours to reach the lunch site. As we ascend, we will pass by the 60 meter high Perolniyoc Waterfall. We will continue hiking up until the reach the Inca archaeological site of Perolniyoc which sits on a small plateau overlooking the valley and town of Soqma below. Here we will rest and have a snack while our guide provides us a tour of the site that was mainly used as an administrative center for the region. After our tour we will then continue our ascent passing through the village of Rayaniyok where locals live in mud brick houses, farm crops, and raise cattle, sheep, and horses. Here we will enjoy lunch and will be able to visit a local house to learn more about the Quechua culture. After eating we will hike for about 3 hours to the campsite, and will pass through the rest of the village and then up through the highlands until we reach the Pukapuhio Pass at 4,400 meters (14,435 ft). Then we will follow a trail around the mountain to our campsite called Charcahualla. From here we will be able to see the Sacred Valley that includes the snowy mountains of the Urubamba mountain range.
After having an early breakfast we will start hiking which will take about 6 hours to reach the lunch site. The trail will follow the side of the mountain open to the Sacred Valley, so that we will be able to see the town of Ollantaytambo below and the mountains on the other side of the valley. This part of the trek will vary from hiking on a flat trail to ascending. We will then cross to the other side of the mountain and will get to see this remote valley where locals bring their livestock to graze. Then we will hike up to the highest pass which is called Kuychicassa and is at 4,470 m or 14,665 ft and here we will take a moment to rest and take photos of the Sacred Valley below. From there, we will start our descent, following a winding path down and using our trekking poles. After about an hour the trail will descend more gradually and we will then hike to the Inca gate Intipunku which was a strategic lookout post to the valley. We will stop here to have a snack and learn more about the Incas before continuing down into the valley. We will then stop at another Inca site called Cachicata which has several well-preserved buildings. Our trail will then pass through the Inca Canteras, or rock quarry, where the Incas chose the stones they would use for their buildings in Ollantaytambo. We will be able to see stones that are already 80% carved and ready to be transported down to the town via a system of platforms. We will also see small Chullpas that were buildings used as tombs for important Incas. Then we will stop to enjoy a well-deserved lunch and we will also say good-bye to our horseman and chef. After that we will follow a wide trail for about an hour that gradually descends to Ollantaytambo. Once we reach the town we will have the opportunity to rest, and can also visit the main plaza as well as the chocolate factory. We will have supper at a local restaurant and in the evening we will take the train to Aguas Calientes which takes about 2 hours. At Aguas Calientes we will take you to your hotel where you can check in and rest for the night.
After having an early breakfast at your hotel, you will meet your guide and take the 25-minute bus ride up to Machu Picchu. You will have a 3-hour tour with your guide where you will see and learn about the most important sites including the Temple of the Sun, the main plaza, Intiwatana, and the Temple of the Condor. After your tour, you will have some free time to explore the ruins on your own and take more pictures of this amazing place. When you are ready you can take the bus back down to Aguas Calientes, and in the afternoon you will take the train back to Cusco where we will pick you up from the train station and drop you off at your hotel
- Transportation from your hotel in Cusco to the start of the hike and back to your hotel at the end
- Entrance ticket to Machu Picchu
- Round trip train tickets from Ollantaytambo to Aguas Calientes and back to Cusco
- Round trip bus tickets to Machu Picchu and back to Aguas Calientes
- Hotel in Aguas Calientes (depending on availability)
- Mattress and pillow provided for free
- Duffle bag that you can fill with up to 8kg (18lb) of your personal gear that the horses will carry
- Other camping equipment,
- Experienced tour guide fluent in English, Spanish and Quechua. Our guides are equipped and trained to practice First-Aid, administer oxygen if needed, and conduct radio communication.
- Complete meals and snacks during the trip (the last lunch in Aguas Calientes is not included). Our experienced chefs make amazing meals in the middle of the mountains and are also used to preparing dishes for people with different food restrictions or lifestyles, so please let us know your preferences and we will make sure to meet your dietary needs.
- Professional chef who grew up in the countryside and a horseman with horses/mules to carry all of our gear
- One extra horse in the case of an emergency
- Lunch on the last day
- Sleeping bag (can be rented from us)
- Tips for guide, chef, and horseman
What to Bring.
- Original passport and student ISIC card (if applicable)
- Sleeping bag (or you can rent one from us)
- A small day backpack to carry your personal belongings (the horses will carry the items that you do not need during the day)
- Bathing suit (if you would like to enjoy the hot springs in Aguas Calientes)
- Good sneakers or light hiking boots, and one pair of flip-flops or light sandals
- Camera and extra batteries
- Rain gear (especially if traveling in the wet season, from October to March)
- Comfortable hiking clothes
- Bug repellent
- Sunscreen and sunglasses
- Cap for the sun
- Warm clothes for the nighttime including thermals, warm hat, and gloves
- Travel towel
- Toilet paper
- Water bottle and about 1 liter of water for the first day until lunch, and after that we will supply you with boiled water for the rest of the hike.
|Number of People You Book With||Price per Person in US Dollars||Discounts:|
* We need a minimum of 2 people to run the tour. We guarantee that your tour will be limited to a maximum of 8 people.
Huayna Picchu: If you are interested in climbing Huayna Picchu, the mountain overlooking Machu Picchu, there is an additional fee of $20 USD per person for us to buy your entrance ticket. Spaces are limited, so please let us know when booking whether you would like to hike Huayna Picchu, and we will reserve it for you. For information about this hike, please visit our Huayna Picchu page.
Hotel Upgrade: Included in this tour is one night at a comfortable B&B Hotel in Aguas Calientes. However, if you would like to upgrade to a 3, 4, or 5 star hotel, please just let us know what type of hotel you prefer and we can upgrade your accommodations.
Sleeping Bags: If you would like to rent a sleeping bag from us, the price is $15 USD per person in total for the hike.
Vistadome Train: Our price includes a return train ticket in the Expedition train from Aguas Calientes to Cusco, however, if you would like to upgrade to the Vistadome train the price is an additional $25 USD per person. Please note that because of the train schedule this option is only available for your return train, and not for the train from Ollantaytambo to Aguas Calientes.
Cuy (Guinea Pig): If you would like to try this dish, the cost is 30 soles for one guinea pig. is a typical Peruvian dish.
Additional Information: For more information on rules and regulations of Machu Picchu, please see our Rules and Regulations page here. To see information on cancellations and other policies, please see our Cancellations page here.
We only require a minimum of 2 people to start this hike, so if there are at least 2 people total in your group we can organize your hike for the start date that you choose. If you are traveling by yourself, please email us to check the availability and let us know the hike(s) you are interested in and the dates when you are available to start the hike.
To reserve your hike, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with the hike you want to do, the date you want to start, and how many people are in your group. We will also need the following information for each traveler:
- Full name
- Passport number
- Date of birth
- Food restrictions (if any)
If you would like tickets to climb Huayna Picchu after your tour of Machu Picchu, we will reserve a ticket for you as long as there is availability.
After sending your personal information, the next step is for each person in your group to make a deposit of $200 USD to reserve your hike. To make your deposit, please pay through our Paypal account by clicking the “Buy Now” button below, or by visiting our Book Now page. To receive the student discount, you must send an email at the time you reserve your spot with a scan of both sides of your student ISIC card. This is the only student card accepted by the National Park and you can find more information about this student ID on the ISIC website here. The remaining balance is due in Cusco. You may pay in cash (either in US dollars or Peruvian soles) at your briefing.