As the sun began to rise over the ancient city of Cuzco, I found myself embarking on a journey that promised not only breathtaking landscapes but also a genuine immersion into the rich culture of the Quechua people. The Lares Trek adventure to Machu Picchu with Bamba Travel was an adventure tailored for those seeking a real cultural experience, and as a senior citizen, I was ready to embrace the challenge, knowing that the rewards would far outweigh the physical demands.
Day 1: Cuzco to Wakawasi, Peru
The adventure in Peru commenced with an early morning pick-up from my accommodation, setting the tone for the days ahead. The drive to Lares Town was filled with anticipation, and the promise of relaxation in the Hot Springs was a welcome prelude to the upcoming trek. The 6-hour ascent to Wakawasi unfolded like a tapestry of wonders — zigzagging paths, snow-capped mountains, and encounters with locals living in harmony with nature. The traditional dress of the Quechua people spoke volumes about their enduring way of life.
Day 2: Wakawasi - Patacancha
The second day led us to the Ipsayccocha Pass, where the air was crisp, and panoramic views took my breath away — quite literally, given the altitude. The descent to Patacancha was a serene journey, with llamas and alpacas as our companions. Camping amidst native crop plantations, I felt a deep connection with the land and its inhabitants.
Day 3: Patacancha - Aguas Calientes
As the trek continued, the path to Ollantaytambo unveiled more wonders. Boarding a train to Aguas Calientes, I marveled at the transition from mountain landscapes to the bustling town. The free evening allowed me to explore the streets, immersing myself in the vibrant atmosphere and preparing for the final leg of the journey.
Day 4: Aguas Calientes - Machu Picchu - Cuzco
The pinnacle of the adventure arrived as we approached Machu Picchu. Early morning mist surrounded the ancient city, adding an ethereal quality to the experience. The guided tour provided insights into the historical significance of the site, while the subsequent exploration allowed me to savor the wonder at my own pace. The option to climb Huayna Picchu added an extra layer of adventure for the more daring.
The return journey to Cuzco marked the conclusion of this remarkable trek. Passing through Ollantaytambo, memories of the Lares Trek lingered as the bus wound its way back to the city. Arriving at Plaza San Francisco, I reflected on the physical challenges overcome, the cultural immersion experienced, and the awe-inspiring beauty witnessed.
In retrospect, the Lares Trek to Machu Picchu with Bamba Travel was not just a physical journey but a soul-stirring adventure. The remote Quechua villages, the challenging terrain, and the ancient wonders of Machu Picchu created a tapestry of memories that will forever be etched in my heart. As a senior, I can attest that the taxing trek was well worth the rewards — a genuine cultural experience and a profound connection with the incredible landscapes of Peru.
Check out the Lares Trek to Machu Picchu 4D/3N itinerary from Bamba Travel.
Guest post written by Bill Hasan
Bill Hasan loves flying around the world while documenting his travels in engaging articles.