Travel with a highly rated local company
Trek with a local bilingual guide providing unique insights into the valley's evolution
Private and safe return transfer to and from your hotel/hostel in Arequipa
This 3-day trek is highly recommended, the level is intermediate. You’ll have plenty of time to enjoy the views and can hike at a slow pace, allowing for even more photo opportunities of the breath-taking landscape. The first day’s trek is 3 ½ hours, the second day’s is 4 ½ hours, and the last day’s is 3 hours. The trail is downhill, with altitudes ranging from 3,300 to 1,900 m.a.s.l. Generally, very little acclimatization is necessary if you have spent time in Arequipa, Puno, or Cusco.
All year round
3 days/2 nights
Arequipa hotel and hostel pickup
Calle Santa Catalina, next to Santa Catalina Monastery
DAY 1: AREQUIPA CITY to CONDOR'S CROSS to SAN JUAN DE CHUCCHO
Pick up from your hotel or hostel will be from 3:00am to 3:30am, and then we will depart from Arequipa. After 3 ½ hours of driving, we’ll have a stop in Chivay to enjoy breakfast. Later, we’ll continue to the most visited point, "Condor's Cross", where you can spend some time seeing the condors fly (around 40 minutes). After, we will continue for another 20 minutes by mini-bus, then our trek downhill begins. We’ll trek downhill from 3,300 m.a.s.l. to reach the bottom, which will take approximately 3 ½ hours, at an altitude of 2,100 m.a.s.l.
We will have lunch in San Juan de Chuccho. Our dinner and overnight stay will also be in San Juan de Chuccho village, which is a tropical environment with a lot of vegetation; the accommodation here is basic rooms.
DAY 2: SAN JUAN DE CHUCCHO to MALATA to OASIS
After breakfast, at around 8:00am we’ll continue to the town of Cosñirhua to see the production of honey made by the local people, and taste-test the honey. It is possible to see the archaeological ruins in the area left by pre-Incan cultures. Going on, we’ll reach the town of Malata and its old Spanish church design. Then we’ll descend to the deepest part of our trek, 1,900 metres at Sangalle Village.
Dinner and overnight in bungalows made of bamboo.
DAY 3: CABANACONDE to CHIVAY to AREQUIPA CITY
At 5:00am we’ll trek uphill to Cabanaconde, which will take approximately 3 hours. On arrival, we will have breakfast in Cabanaconde and then take our transport to Chivay on the way back to Arequipa.
At approximately 12:00pm, we will arrive in Chivay – here you can visit the hot springs if you like. In Chivay, we’ll have a typical regional lunch, and then head back to Arequipa. On the way back, we’ll descend from 4,830 m.a.s.l. to 2,325 m.a.s.l. and pass through a National Reserve and Pampa Cañahuas habitat, home to the four kinds of South American camelids (llama, alpaca, vicuña and guanaco).
We’ll return to Arequipa at approximately 5:30pm, where you’ll be dropped off in Calle Santa Catalina, next to Santa Catalina Monastery
- Official Colca Canyon entrance tax of 70 soles is not included in the ticket price. This must be paid on the tour.
For those that wish to finish in Puno: On return to Chivay at 1pm, there will just be 15 minutes for lunch before departing to Puno. Arrival time in Puno is 7pm, and the drop off point is at Puno Plaza de Armas.
- Rainy season lasts from December to March. We recommend you bring rain clothes (rain poncho) and a spare change of clothes. (these are available to rent or buy in Arequipa).
DAY 1 : 03:00 -03:30
Hostel and hotel pick up
DAY 1 : 03:30 - 08:30
Drive towards Chivay and stop to have breakfast along the way
DAY 1 : 08:30 - 09:10
See Condor's Cross
DAY 1 : 09:10 - 09:30
Mini-bus to Pampas San Miguel
DAY 1: 09:30 - 13:30
Start the trek downhill from 3,300 metres
DAY 1: 13:30 - 14:30
Have lunch in San Juan de Chuccho
DAY 1: 19:00
Dinner and overnight in San Juan de Chuccho (the accommodation is basic)
DAY 2 : 07:30 - 08:30
Have breakfast then continue to Cosñirhua town
DAY 2 : 09:30 - 10:00
Go to Malata town
DAY 2 : 10:00 - 12:30
Reach the deepest part of our trek, the Sangalle Oasis where you stay the rest of the day
DAY 2 : 13:30 - 14:30
Have lunch and relax in the pool
DAY 2: 19:00
Dinner and overnight in bungalows made of bamboo
DAY 3 : 05:00
Trek uphill to Cabanaconde (3 hours approx.)
DAY 3 : 08:00 - 08:45
Have breakfast in Cabanaconde
DAY 3 : 12:00 - 14:00
Optional visit to the natural hot springs of Chivay, and have a typical buffet lunch
DAY 3 : 14:00 - 17:00
Bus back to Arequipa city
DAY 3 : 17:00 - 17:30
Arrive back to Arequipa; be dropped off in Calle Santa Catalina, next to Santa Catalina Monastery
- Roundtrip tourist transportation
- All meals: 3 breakfast, 2 lunch, 2 dinner
- English speaking trekking guide
- Two nights in rustic huts: "Casa Rivelino" (San Juan) and "Tropical" or "Cielo" (Oasis)
- First aid medicine kit
- The government enforced tourist entrance tax for the Colca:
Foreigners 13 years of age and above: 70 soles (approx. USD $25)
South American 13 years of age and above: 40 soles (approx. USD $15)
National 13years of age and above: 20 soles (approx. USD $8)
Children (All Nationalities) under 13years of age: 5 soles (approx. USD $2)
Note: Not included on any tours, as it is illegal to include it
- Optional visit to the Chivay hot springs - 15 Soles (approx. USD $5)
- Lunch on the last day
- Light backpack
- 1.5 to 2 litres of water for Day 1 (if you need more, you can buy it at the small shops in the villages)
- Sun cream (very important)
- Hat, sunglasses
- Trekking shoes or boots
- Warm layers, sweater or jacket (IMPORTANT) –temperatures can reach lows of -10 ̊ C
- Shorts or pants for walking
- Swimming suit, sandals, towel
- Flashlight/headtorch – early trek starts at 5am before sunrise (it will be dark!)
- Toilet paper, etc
- Snacks (breakfast on the last day is only AFTER the hike out of the Canyon)
- Insects repellent
- Personal medication
- Hiking sticks (optional)
- Money for drinks
IMPORTANT: You must carry a copy of your passport on the first day of your trek.
Cancellation or changes of this tour:
CHANGES: It is FREE to change the tour date before 6:00 pm (Lima time) the day before the tour begins.
No Shows & Cancellations of this tour - If you cancel before 6:00 pm (Lima time) the day before the tour begins, there is a 10% administration fee (+ the card fee). After this time, there is a 100% no show or cancellation fee.
You must email firstname.lastname@example.org (include the name of the tour and the reservation number) to cancel this tour or to make any changes.
I can’t find my accommodation listed in the operator pick up locations as I’m making my booking. What should I select?
This operator only offers pick-ups from the hotel and hostel accommodation listed, this covers over 90% of the accommodation providers in the area. They do not provide pick-ups or drop-offs at private residences, Airbnbs, bus terminals etc. Select an alternative close by and be ready there for pick-up at the time on your booking confirmation.
What is the difference between the Colca Canyon TOURS and TREKS?
During the tours you will have limited walking sections, as most of the time you stay on a bus and only get outside at several viewing points. The tours are more recommended for travellers who want or (because of physical conditions) have to take it easy. Treks however, are perfect for people with good physical condition. With treks, you will definitely get more and intense views of the beautiful and unique landscape of the Canyon.
What's the difference between a 2-day and a 3-day trek?
The routes for both tours are the same. The three-day trek just offers more time to relax and enjoy the canyon. Because of that, the tour is easier than the 2-day trek. But still, neither trek is easy!
Will I see Condors on this trek?
There are quite a few Condors out there, and as we visit different viewing points the chances are quite good. We still cannot guarantee that you will be able to see them, but if you get lucky they will fly just above your head!
Do I need to bring trekking shoes?
Not necessarily, but as you will spend several hours hiking up and down through the canyon, we recommend to at least wear stable and comfortable shoes.
Do I need any camping equipment?
You do not need any specialist equipment with you to be able to tackle the Colca. A tent is not required. Accommodation is in small rustic huts, located in the ¨Oasis¨ at the bottom of the Canyon. It can get cold at night and very warm during the day, so you need to pack for all weather conditions, and have comfortable footwear (trekking shoes or good trainers are sufficient). Some guides also recommend bringing a flashlight and some snacks.
Will I have problems with altitude sickness on this tour?
Altitude sickness can catch many travellers a little bit off guard. Not everyone gets sick in high altitudes, and it is difficult to predict who is likely to be badly affected by it. For most people, it is nothing more than a headache and a dizzy sensation that diminishes over a short period of time, 1 to 2 days for most people. If you want to limit your chances of getting sick, there are a few things you can do. Firstly, do not fly directly into high altitude - proceed slowly, allowing your body time to acclimatise as you ascend gradually. However, for many that is not possible, so it’s important to drink lots of water, and to slow down! This sounds simple, but both of these things are very important. Your body is struggling because you don’t have enough oxygen, so avoiding any strenuous activity is a good idea. Chew some coca leaves - the native people of South America have been chewing coca for centuries, thanks to its ability to alleviate mild altitude sickness symptoms. Coca leaves can be bought in any supermarket, and even souvenir shops or street stalls. Take altitude sickness pills (Soroche): these are sold over the counter all over Peru and Bolivia, and are just a few dollars. If you are flying straight into altitude over 2500 metres without spending any time at an intermediate elevation, and you’re worried about getting sick, you can ask your doctor for more specific and stronger altitude sickness medication in advance. In the rare case that your symptoms are more severe than a headache and mild dizziness, you should descend in altitude and seek medical assistance.
Can I finish in Puno instead of Arequipa?
Yes, this is possible. On return to Chivay at 1pm, there will just be 15 minutes for lunch before departing to Puno. Arrival time in Puno is 7pm, and the drop off point is at Puno, Plaza de Armas. For this option, you MUST select the ticket option - TREK + TRANSFER FROM THE CANYON TO PUNO - when making a booking.
Is there oxygen provided on this trek?
No, there is no oxygen provided during the trek. There is, however, an emergency oxygen tank in our private transportation.
During the trek, how many people are there per group?
Groups are between 10 to 12 people per 1 bilingual guide.
Can I rent trekking poles with the operator?
Yes, you can rent a pair of trekking poles, and the price is 20 soles per set per day (S/.10 soles each). You need to inform us 24 hours before your tour date.
Does this tour operator cater for special dietary requirements, such as vegetarian and vegan?
Yes, you must let your guide know of your dietary requirements on the first day of your trek. It is important to note that the concepts of veganism and vegetarianism are quite new in Peru, and so alternative options will be extremely limited (rice, salad, vegetables). We suggest taking some snacks.
Can I rent mules?
Yes, it costs 80 soles per day, or 60 soles during the uphill section on the last day from Sangalle to Cabanaconde.
Can I have a private room if I travel alone or as a couple?
Yes, of course, but you will need to pay an extra 40 soles and it is only possible for the second night (not the first night). You need to inform us 24 hours before your tour date.
How many kilometres and hours per day do I need to walk during the trek?
You will trek approximately 3 to 4 kilometres per day. On the first day, it is 3 or 4 hours downhill. On the second day, it is steep uphill for approximately 1 hour, and a flat walk for 30 minutes. On the last day, 3 to 4 hours are uphill.
I do not want to take all of my belongings with me to the Canyon. Where can I leave my big bag or suitcase?
Hotels and hostels in Arequipa will all store your bags in their safety deposit for free whilst you are away at the Canyon, until you check in again upon your return. Head off to the trip with just what you need and leave the rest in storage. If you continue after your trek from Chivay to Puno, on the first day of your trek you will have breakfast in a restaurant in Chivay. This restaurant has a storage facility, where passengers who are trekking can leave their backpacks for a small fee, and pick them up on return.
Is an accommodation upgrade available, instead of a basic hotel?
No, this Colca Canyon provider does not offer alternative accommodation. If you wish to stay in a different hotel or lodge in the Canyon, it is recommended you book a private tour of the Canyon.
Do I need to bring drinking water for my treks?
There is no water included, so you will need to bring water for the first day of your trek. In the canyon there are a few shops and stalls in the accommodation providers where you can buy water. Given the isolated location, it is more expensive than Arequipa or Puno (it costs approx. 10 or 15 soles for a 2.5 litre water bottle).
Can I start the tour in Chivay?
Yes, you can! There is no problem if your hotel is in Chivay. However, if your hotel is on the outskirts of the town of Chivay, there will be an extra charge. You will need to send us an e-mail at the time of your booking in order to inform the tour operator.
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