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Hiking in Peru vs visiting the rainforest/jungle (Tambopata)?

Hiking in Peru vs visiting the rainforest/jungle (Tambopata)?

Jun 17th, 2014, 12:23 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 2
Hiking in Peru vs visiting the rainforest/jungle (Tambopata)?

We'll be in Peru for 10 days and have the choice of either:
1) Hiking for 4 days to Aguas Calientes (Salkantay Trek) - this is an alternative to hiking the Inca Trail since we cant get a permit.
2) Just taking the train to Machu Picchu instead of hiking and spend several days down in the rainforest (Tambopata) or Lake Titicaca instead
Can anyone any suggestions? We were leaning towards the hiking.
Any other suggestions for things 'not to be missed' in Peru?
Lorae is offline  
Jun 17th, 2014, 10:01 PM
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 7,557
A difficult one Which really depends on what pique your particular interest. On balance I think I would go for a trek combined with spending time in Cusco and the sacred valley and maybe throw in a flying visit to Titicaca depending upon how busy you want yo be.I really don't think a jungle visit is the best option in 10 days.

I haven't done the Salatankay trek or the Inka Trail choosing instead the 3 day Lares to Ollantaytambo trek which was a tiring but incredible experience. Our blog with photos

Entry 58 cover the trek

After the trek we got the train from Ollantaytambo to MP stopping overnight in Aguas Calientes. Ollataytambo is a lovely town and worth a day to explore the ruins and maybe another for Moray, Maras and Chichero.

Cusco has much to commend it, even if it is heaving with tourists. It is the place to visit museums, churches, markets etc.. As well as some terrific food. Easy to lose a 2-3 days there.

As you are into hiking one to consider which only takes a day is the hike down from Tambo Machay along the old inca paths to Cusco via Sacsayhuaman.

Pisac is a sight which is sometimes overlooked but is well worth a visit and could be combined with teh above trek in a very busy day!

More info on my later blog

Lake Titicaca is both unique and spectacular. Whether you have time for this as well depends on what else you choose to do. It is possible to get there by overnight bus but our experience on our last trip was not good. Far better to go via one of the tour buses like Inka Express. It is a full day but you get to see some wonderfull as you cross teh altiplano . You also get to stop at places of interest along the way. You will probably need to spend two nights in Puno to fit in a trip on the lake.

Hope this helps rather than confuses!
crellston is offline  
Jun 18th, 2014, 08:05 AM
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 18,134
There are numerous day hikes around the Sacred Valley so you don't necessarily have to do Salkantay. The hike down from Pisac is one that I like (or you could do up and down but I thought the $5 pp for the taxi up was worthwhile).

Out of Ollantaytambo, KB Tambo has a hostal/hostel/inn and he also runs bike rides and hikes. I haven't done it but the Abra Malaga Pass is popular. There are lots of other options on the website http://kbperu.com/tours/mountain-bik...e/abra-malaga/

I kind of agree that I would pick Titicaca over the jungle.
Neotropical jungles tend to be similar unless you are a real enthusiast/birder, and the ones nearest to Cusco are either degraded or expensive. Personally I prefer the cloud forest!
mlgb is offline  
Jun 18th, 2014, 11:04 AM
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 55
We visited Tambopata for several days before doing the trek to MP and there is absolutely no comparison. Do the trek! MP and the Sacred Valley are so beautiful with many opportunities for hiking. Although we did the Inca Trail trek, we saw Salkantay from a distance and I am sure that trek would be great as well.
nankar123 is offline  
Jun 19th, 2014, 08:53 AM
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 25,536
We did a 6-day Salkantay trek in March (ours was lodge-to-lodge, so I can't advise about camping out, cooking, etc.). The last day of the trek, we met up with the Inca Trail. I am so glad we did the Salkantay, if only for the lack of trekkers. The first 4 days on the trail, we saw exactly 3 people who were not associated with our group. The trek is extremely beautiful.
sf7307 is online now  
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