Cusco Small group activities

Our most recommended Cusco Small group activities

From Cusco: Full-Day Group Tour of Machu Picchu

1. From Cusco: Full-Day Group Tour of Machu Picchu

Travel from Cusco to learn about the majestic Inca city: Machu Picchu and the ancient civilization living there. Discover the secrets that are hidden in it. Go back in time as you explore the streets of these ruins located in the Peruvian Andes.  Begin with an early morning pickup from your hotel in Cusco for transfer to the train station. Get on board and enjoy the comforts offered by the train during the journey to Machu Picchu. Choose from the option of a standard train or a Vistadome train that offers panoramic views. Enjoy the dynamic landscapes of the Peruvian Andes. Arrive in Aguas Calientes and take a bus to the entrance of the citadel of Machu Picchu. Learn about the history of this wonderful place. Depending on the option you select, enjoy a guided tour of Circuit 5. Visit Qolqas, the Agricultural Zone, the waterway, dry pit, Temple of the Sun, Inka House, water sources, set three covers, Pisonay Square, and the archaeological reserve. Take the bus back to Aguas Calientes and get recommendations for lunch. Board the train back to the Ollantaytambo or Poroy station where transportation will be waiting to take you to your hotel in Cusco.

Cusco: Full-Day Rainbow Mountain & Red Valley Trekking Tour

2. Cusco: Full-Day Rainbow Mountain & Red Valley Trekking Tour

After pickup from your accommodation in Cusco, head in the direction of Quiquijana and savor a delicious breakfast buffet in a local restaurant.  Then, continue the journey until you reach the control point in Llaqta and finally arrive in Phulawasipata, where your trekking adventure awaits. Before starting the trek, your guide will recommend starting your adventure towards Rainbow Mountain. Walk for approximately 1.5 hours until you reach Rainbow Mountain at 5,036 meters above sea level.  Take in panoramic views from the top of the mountain from where you'll be able to see the Ausangate Mountain, Peru's fifth highest mountain. Enjoy 20-minute of leisure time to take pictures of the fascinating scenery. Then, continue for a 30-minute trek to the Red Valley. Once again, admire the views of the Red Valley, located 5,038 meters above sea level. After 15 minutes, you'll return to the parking lot where your driver awaits you. On the way back, stop for a break in Quiquijana where you'll taste delicious buffet lunch. Then, head back to Cusco where you'll be dropped off at the Plaza Regocijo, 2 blocks from Plaza de Armas.

From Cusco: Sacred Valley, Pisac, Moray, & Salt Mines Tour

3. From Cusco: Sacred Valley, Pisac, Moray, & Salt Mines Tour

During this Sacred Valley day tour, go to the must-visit sites of Cusco and have a chance to try traditional Incan beer. Get picked up from your hotel in Cusco's city center and head to your first stop, Mirador Taray.  Take in the spectacular views of the Andes and the Sacred Valley to prepare for your day of discovery.  Continue to the town of Pisac, the site of a popular market. See how locals dye alpaca wool with natural plants of the region. Visit the archaeological site and see its terraces, Incan cemeteries, and royal buildings.  Afterward, move on to Moray to learn about the history of the Incas and wonder at their mysterious circular terraces. Head to the nearby village of Maras and learn about its history as a center for salt production at the Maras Salt Mines. Admire the unique quilt work of over 3,000 salt ponds spilling into the Sacred Valley. From here, go to Urubamba and enjoy a buffet lunch at a local restaurant. Continue with a drive along the Urubamba River towards the town of Ollantaytambo to visit the ruins. Marvel at the remarkable Incan architecture built during the Incan Empire's heyday. In addition to the ruins, see an amazing rock formation that represents the Incan god of Wiracocha. After your time at the ruins, choose to return to Cusco with your guide or to stay in Ollantaytambo so you can continue your personal travels to Machu Picchu.

Salkantay Trek 5-Day Hike to Machu Picchu

4. Salkantay Trek 5-Day Hike to Machu Picchu

Follow in the footsteps of the ancient Incas and hike along the same paths they used to trek through the mountains centuries ago. Get back to nature and experience amazing views of the snow-capped mountain peaks of the Andes. Day 1: Cusco - Mollepata - Markhuq’asa - Soraypampa - Humantay Lake - Salkantaypampa (L, D) Depart Cusco and journey to Markhuq’asa for the start of your trek to Soraypampa, 3,850 meters above sea level. Stop for lunch at the base camp and then go on a round-trip hike to Humantay Lake. Then continue to the Salkantaypampa base camp to spend the night. Day 2: Salkantaypampa - Salkantay Pass - Collpapampa (B, L, D) Hike to the highest point of the trail at Salkantay Pass and get spectacular views of the snow-capped mountains before a 2-hour downhill hike to the camp for lunch. Then, enter the upper part of the Amazon jungle on a hike through what is know as the cloud forest. Look for native wildlife on the way to the village of Collpapampa, where you will spend the night. Day 3: Collpapampa - La Playa (B, L, D) After breakfast, take an easy hike to La Playa through the Santa Teresa valley and marvel at the waterfalls and wild orchids. Encounter coffee, banana, and avocado plantations, and get the chance to sample the local coffee at an organic coffee farm. After a typical lunch in La Playa, here you will have the option (at an extra cost payable onsite) to visit the hot thermal springs and abundant birdlife. Return to the campsite for an overnight stay. Day 4: Santa Teresa - Hidroelectrica - Aguas Calientes (B, L, D) On this day, in Santa Teresa, you can choose to visit the zipline, rafting, or canopy at an extra cost payable directly on-site. Then, you will head to Hidroelectrica, passing through waterfalls coming from the glaciers and fields of cocoa and coffee. After a nourishing lunch, begin a 2-hour walk to Machu Picchu Pueblo, known as Aguas Calientes. Once in Aguas Calientes, you can go to your hotel to shower and relax before dinner. After dinner, get some rest before the early morning climb up to Machu Picchu the following morning. Day 5: Machu Picchu (B) Explore Machu Picchu in the early morning before the crowds arrive. You can choose to hike uphill to the ruins or take the bus for an additional charge. Benefit from a 2-hour guided tour on arrival and learn more about the temples, palaces, priest houses, and more. Take the train to Ollantaytambo in the afternoon and then catch the bus back to Cusco for drop-off at your hotel or hostel on arrival.

Cusco: Inca Trail to Machu Picchu 4-Day Trek

5. Cusco: Inca Trail to Machu Picchu 4-Day Trek

Tackle the unforgettable Inca Trail, and enjoy a once-in-a-lifetime hike to Machu Picchu. Departing from Cusco, discover one of the world’s oldest pilgrimages on this 4-day trip and explore a cloud forest. Depart from your Cusco hotel early in the morning and drive 82 kilometers to the starting point in Llactapata. Begin your guided hike to the first campsite in Ayapata, located 3300 (10826 feet) meters above sea level. In the morning, make your way to Warmiwañuska, passing two mountains for a total of 10 hours of hiking. Traverse Dead Woman’s Pass, the highest point of the Inca Trail at 4215 meters (13829 feet). Then, cross the Runqurakay Pass, with 4000 meters (13123 feet) to Chaquicocha. After a good night's rest at Chaquicocha, take on the 6-hour trek to Phuyupatamarca and finally the archaeological site of Wiñaywayna at 2600 meters (8530 feet). Pass through a number of ecological zones, home to a diversity of flora and fauna. Spot orchids and bromeliads, as well as hummingbirds, foxes, and deer. Wake up early and hike for 2 hours to Machu Picchu through the Sungate, and enjoy a unique view of Machu Picchu. After exploring Machu Picchu, board the Panoramic train back to Cusco and be dropped off at your hotel in the evening.

Cusco: 2-Day Sacred Valley and Machu Picchu Guided Tour

6. Cusco: 2-Day Sacred Valley and Machu Picchu Guided Tour

Discover Peru's ancient wonders with a 2-day excursion from Cusco. Explore Ollantaytambo in the Sacred Valley, take a 2-hour guided tour of the ancient ruins at Machu Picchu, and upgrade your tour to include a hike up Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu mountain. Day 1The journey starts with the pickup from your hotel in Cusco. If you choose the 6:30 A.M. start time, visit Chinchero, Maras-Moray, and Ollantaytambo. Choose the 7:50 A.M. start to visit Pisaq and Ollantaytambo in the Sacred Valley. Stop to enjoy lunch in the town of Urubamba (included) before taking the train to Aguas Calientes. Upon arrival in Aguas Calientes, head to your accommodation. Choose the accommodation add-on when booking to enjoy an included comfortable hotel room. Enjoy an afternoon of leisure in Aguas Calientes. At night, the guide will contact you at your hotel to provide all the instructions for the tour to Machu Picchu the next day. Day 2Wake up early for a 7:00 AM departure from Aguas Calientes to the Inca citadel of Machu Picchu by bus. Upon your arrival, enjoy a 2-hour guided tour of Machu Picchu. Walk with your guide and learn about this ancient Inca city. Visit gardens, shrines, water channels, and prisons. After the guided tour, enjoy some free time to explore the Inca citadel on your own. Increase your adventure by adding an optional Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu climb to your trip. Following directions from your guide, climb to the summit on your to enjoy panoramic views of the area. Head back to the town of Aguas Calientes and enjoy some free time for lunch (not included) before taking the train back to Ollantaytambo. Finally, return to Cusco city by bus.

Cusco: Moray, Maras Salt Mines & Chinchero Weavers Half-Day

7. Cusco: Moray, Maras Salt Mines & Chinchero Weavers Half-Day

Travel through the historic Urubamba Valley on an unparalleled half-day tour from Cusco and pass the snow-capped peaks of the Peruvian Andes. Meander through lush yellow fields of wheat and sleepy little villages en route to Moray. Upon arrival, learn about the ingenuity of the Incas in their mysterious circular terraces. Continue to the nearby village of Maras to explore its history as a center for salt production. Take in the spectacular nature and admire the unique quilt work of over 3,000 salt ponds spilling into the Sacred Valley. Finish the day back in Cusco in time to explore more of the magnificent city.

Cusco: Humantay Lake All-inclusive Full-day Tour

8. Cusco: Humantay Lake All-inclusive Full-day Tour

Benefit from pick-up at your Cusco hotel between 03:30 AM and 04:00 AM, and then journey to Mollepata village in the lush valley of the Apurimac River. After breakfast in Mollepata, continue towards Soraypampa 3,900 meters above sea level. Trek for approximately 1.5 hours to Humantay Lake, 4,200 meters (13,779 feet) above sea level and get wonderful views of the turquoise waters at the base of Humantay Glacier. Immerse yourself in a landscape sacred to the Incas, and get the chance to rent a horse to ride to the lake. Explore the turquoise glacial waters of Humantay Lake , leisure for photography exploring the surrounding area before going back to Mollepata for a buffet lunch. Then, journey back to Cusco at 06:00 PM.

Cusco: Machu Picchu Tour with Tickets

9. Cusco: Machu Picchu Tour with Tickets

Embark on a full-day trip to Machu Picchu from Cusco and experience the grandeur of this UNESCO World Heritage Site. Learn the history behind the complex and the Inca people from your guide. On this 1-day excursion, visit Peru’s most important archaeological and cultural treasure. The day begins with pickup at your hotel, and transfer to the train station in Ollantaytambo. An early 5:05 AM departure means you’ll have ample time to explore Machu Picchu. Take in the beauty of the valleys on the train journey to Aguas Calientes. From this point, there’s just a 30-minute bus trip to the sanctuary of Machu Picchu. Explore the Inca complex with a knowledgeable guide. See the Temple of the Sun, the Intihuatana, the Temple of the 3 Windows, the mausoleum, and more. Have free time to take photos and walk around on your own. Visit the Plaza de Armas in town and see what handicrafts are on offer.  Return to Ollantaytambo by train, and then you’ll be taken back to Cusco.

From Cusco: Sacred Valley Tour with Pisac and Ollantaytambo

10. From Cusco: Sacred Valley Tour with Pisac and Ollantaytambo

The first stop on this full-day tour from Cusco is the Mirador of Taray for spectacular views of the Andes and the Sacred Valley. Continue to the town of Pisac, the site of a popular market.. Visit the archaeological site and see the agricultural terraces, Inca cemeteries and royal buildings. Continue to Urubamba and enjoy a buffet lunch at a restaurant. Head to Ollantaytambo, built to guard the entrance to Machu Picchu, and to protect the Incas from possible invasions. Visit the picturesque village of Chinchero on the way back to Cusco, and see the remains of the royal estate of Tupac Inca Yupanqui. See also how locals dye alpaca wool with natural plants of the region.

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The best day trips and excursions from Cusco are:

Machu Picchu

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What people are saying about Cusco

The trip is organized very well, choose the early pick up to arrive early at the lagoon. The breakfast and lunch are excellent and diversified. The hike is moderate to difficult but the view worth every step. Totally recommend

everything went like clockwork from first pick up to the train and the chaos of getting a bus in machu pichu. Scenery amazing. Guide at the site was very knowledgeable and friendly. A must do trip

A perfect day trip - definitely recommend joining the Red Valley hike! Such a gorgeous area, and so much more of the mountains to enjoy besides just Rainbow Mountain.

Everything went perfect. The pick up was on time and our guides were absolutely awesome. I highly recommend this trip if is your first time visiting Machu Picchu

Bryan was a great guide. Was a good pace. Provided a good background/ history of Machu Picchu and was a great photographer