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Inca Trail Expeditions
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FAQ - Inca Trail, Treks and Cusco

1. Can I trek the Inca Trail alone without a travel operator?
A1. No. As from 1st January 2001 trekking independently has been prohibited. The regulation, however, was not enforced until early 2002. You will necessarily to hire an operator to get all the permissions, the entrance tickets for the trail MUST be bought in Cusco well in advance only through a licensed Inca Trail operator. They cannot be purchased at the start of the trail.

2. Should I make a reservation for the trek in advance or wait until arriving in Cusco?
A2. Because the numbers of persons permitted on the trek has been dramatically reduced it is advisable to make a reservation 5-6 weeks in advance. This is particularly important if you are planning on arriving in Cusco during the peak season (June-September).

3. What's the best time during the year to go?
A3. The 'dry' season from April to October seems to be generally considered preferable, at least as far as weather. It's mostly dry but it can rain at any time. Remember the dramatic temperature range. At higher altitudes, it's sunny during the day and cold and windy at night.

4. How hard is the Inca Trail?
A4. The trek is physically challenging, but no technical expertise is required. The difficulty comes largely from the repeated step ascents and descents, and from the high altitude. The climb to the first pass takes you up from around 2000m (6500ft) to more than 4000m (13000ft) in a relatively short space, followed by a descent of around 1500m (5000ft). After the second pass at 3500m (11500ft), things generally become easier.

5. What do we do for drinking water?
A5. Inka Wasi will provide boiled water to fill your bottle at meal times, although the water is clear always use sterilizing tablets and follow the instructions. The sterilizing tablets 'MicroPur' can be bought in most pharmacies in Cusco . With these tablets you have to wait 40 minutes before drinking. Take a bottle of at least 1½ liter capacity per person.
Bottled mineral water can also be taken from Cusco, bought at km82, just before Wayllabamba and at Wiñay Wayna and Machu Picchu. If you are employing the services of a personal porter you can afford to take the extra weight of a few bottles of water.

Besides, You'll come across a small stream or mountain spring every 1½ hours along the trail where you can fill up your water bottle too.

6. What are the toilets like along the trail?
A6. Toilets have improved a lot in the last couple of years and all of the larger campsites have toilet blocks with flush toilets and running water. On the whole they are kept pretty clean.
There are hot shower facilities are Wiñay Wayna on day 3, although they are usually pretty unclean and you have to pay a little extra.

7. Should I hire an extra porter? when?
A7. Our service includes porters for carrying the food, tents, dining tent and cooking equipment. However, during the Inca Trail you will have to carry your personal stuff (such as backpack, camera, etc) your sleeping bag and pad (both provided by us if needed). Hiring an extra porter may make the trek more enjoyable since you will walking withouth all that extra weight.
Each porter can carry up to 18 kilos and you must ask for him to us or to your operator when booking your Inca Trail.
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