Inca Trail Route and Acclimatization

Inca Trail Route and Acclimatization

Inca Trail Route Acclimatization to Machu Picchu

This article about the Inca Trail route acclimatization will guide you on the right way to get prepared for your Inca Trail Trek before starting your adventure.

Preparation and Acclimatization

Whichever trail hikers choose, it’s very important that they make the right preparations. The hike in the Andes is difficult for most, if for no other reason than the high altitude. No matter what, hikers should give themselves at least two days to adjust to the high altitudes in Cusco before beginning their journey. Once set out, it’s important to be prepared with all of the essentials.

You must be honest with your trek leader/guide about any health conditions or concerns you might have. While our guides are not medical professionals, they do have first aid training and emergency procedures. We also work with a clinic in Cusco that can help assist our team. All travelers should familiarize themselves with local conditions, such as high altitude or required immunizations, which could affect their health. We recommend you consult with your personal health- care provider, the Centers for Disease Control ( and/or the World Health Organization ( for their recommendations. There are several easy steps you can take to stay healthy while traveling which may help prevent contracting an illness while away from home.

Before your trip to Peru:

  • Go out and take some walks around the neighborhood, if do this for a couple of times a week, that would be great.
  • If you live close by to some nature or open field, this would be a great chance to hike around this place, you can do this every weekend.
  • If you go hiking around nature, make sure to use your new hiking shoes or boots a good way to break in new boots and you can take your day pack that way to measure your body resistance.
  • Choose harder hikes every weekend, search for further information about hikes that involve climbing and hikes at high altitudes. A hike with a 30-minute climb is a really good start.
  • Carry up to 14 pounds in your daypack to speed up your training. Fill up your backpack with weights, snacks, water, and books when you go hiking outdoors.
  • If you can’t make it outdoors your training then hit the gym. Start the warm-up routine on the elliptical machine for about 20 minutes, next, a 20-minute jog or faster-paced walk on the treadmill, and finish your workout with a 10-minute climb on the step master machine. These three exercises will get you kind of ready for your Inca Trail adventure.
  • If you suffer any chronic disease, it is important to monitor it during the exercise and see your physician for further tips and recommendations.
  • While no inoculations are required, vaccination against yellow fever is recommended, especially if traveling to the Amazon Jungle. Please consult your physician before traveling to Peru.

Once already in Cusco:

  • It is very advisable to take some short walks in the downtown or outskirts of the city if possible.
  • We have an acclimatization program for everyone who has any treks in Cusco to Machu Picchu, we offer light to moderate day hikes in Cusco and Sacred Valley of the Incas, where hikers experience a few high altitudes, temperatures, trail surface, and test their self that how prepared are for their upcoming hike.
  • Watch what you eat. Try new foods in modest quantities, and depending upon your destination, you may want to avoid street foods, salad bars, raw vegetables, and fruits unless they have thick peels like bananas or grapefruit.
  • Avoid drinking alcoholic drinks, this might lead to getting altitude sickness.
  • Stay hydrated. Drink bottled water and avoid consuming ice cubes made with tap water.
  • If you have allergies to foods, medications or insect bites, or have any other unique medical issues, consider a medical alert bracelet and/or a physician’s note detailing required treatment should you become ill.
  • Wash your hands regularly and carry hand sanitizer.
  • Pack sunscreen and insect repellant (for both active and warm destinations).
  • You may also want to bring a small first-aid kit with band aids, antibiotic cream, pain killers, bug bite cream, digestive aids like antidiarrheal or anti-bloat medications, antacids, and cold medicine. This is in addition to any prescription medications which should be adequate for the entire trip.
  • You may encounter mosquitoes in both urban and rural areas, especially during wet seasons. Travelers are encouraged to bring insect repellant and consider wearing clothing that adequately covers arms and legs.

Traveler’s diarrhea caused by contaminated food or water, often resulting in dehydration, is common. Take care to follow these steps to avoid or reduce the symptoms.

  • Drink only bottled water.
  • Avoid unpasteurized cheeses and unpeeled or unwashed fruits and vegetables.
  • Eggs, meat, and seafood should be properly and fully cooked.
  • Please note that the popular Peruvian alcoholic beverage, Pisco Sour is often made with uncooked egg white.
  • If you have contracted diarrhea, let your stomach rest. Do not eat for several hours or until you are feeling better.
  • Drink bottled or boiled water and rehydration beverages containing electrolytes (sports drinks) frequently and in small amounts. (sports drinks) frequently and in small amounts.
  •  Resume your diet with simple and bland foods, such as crackers, rice, bread, potatoes, or bananas, which usually will help slow diarrhea.

The trail gets cold at night, so it’s important to have sleeping bags and warm clothes even when hiking in Peru’s summer months. Our trek has four hiking days and five hiking days. The Peru Summit Adventures way allows you to acclimatize gradually to the altitude, have reasonable wake-up times (no hiking in the dark, as with other companies), and enjoy well-paced hiking days that give you time to explore the extraordinary archaeological sites and the wildlife along the route. We want you to experience the wonder and beauty of the Trail, not race through it.

The Inca Trail length is 43km/ 26 miles and it is mostly stone-paved (Inca stones) and it goes up and down across green mountains while crossing two high-altitude passes, the pass of Warmiwañuska (Deadwoman pass) 4,215m/13,829ft and the pass of Runkuraqay 3,950m/12,959ft. For the most part, you can hike at your own speed, taking as many little breaks as you want because we always have a staff member hiking in the lead as well as one behind with the slowest hiker in our group if there are 8 participants in the group, if the group is small of 3-4 participants you will be always kept by your guide’s eyes. Any fit, experienced hiker will enjoy this hike–Inca Trail Route Acclimatization.