Trekking holiday in Peru

“Small group trek on the lesser-known Moonstone Trail from Cuzco to Ollantaytambo via the Sacred Valley. Full service camping, locally owned guesthouses and trained local guides. ”


Cuzco | Moonstone Trail | Accoccosa Pass | Sacred Valley | Huayrapunku | 3 nights full service camping | Average daily walking distance - 10kms for 5 days | Wiñay Wayna | Early morning train ride from Ollantaytambo to Machu Picchu |

Description of Trekking holiday in Peru

This eleven day trek gives you the opportunity to walk to seldom seen villages in areas of the Andes that are relatively unknown to larger tour groups. Not only will your presence in Peru benefit trained trekking guides and privately owned accommodation staff but you’ll also be making a difference to small food suppliers and market stall holders, many of whom make a living from sustainable tourism.

Starting in the tranquil setting between Cuzco and the Sacred Valley, you’ll start off on the trail to Ollantaytambo, which is only a two hour train ride from the legendary city of Machu Picchu.

Full service camping for three nights really opens up the landscapes of the Andes and allows you to understand the significance of the surrounding scenery and corresponding Inca temples.

This is an isolated and less frequented approach to the fabled Inca citadel and it’s very rare to see any other tourists before you reach the significantly busier market town of Ollantaytambo.

From archaeological sites and pre-Inca temples to altiplano plateaus surrounded by glistening Andean peaks, this trekking holiday combines the very best of Peru’s natural and cultural heritage, as well as providing significant and fair financial support to local Peruvians.

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15 Oct 2021
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Small group tours:
Small group travel is not large group travel scaled down. It is modelled on independent travel – but with the advantage of a group leader to take care of the itinerary, accommodation and tickets, and dealing with the language. It’s easy to tick off the big sights independently – but finding those one-off experiences, local festivals, travelling markets and secret viewpoints is almost impossible for someone without the insider knowledge gained from years in the field. Those with a two-week holiday, a small group tour will save valuable planning time.

Responsible tourism

As the pioneers of responsible tourism, we screen every trip so you can travel knowing your holiday will help support conservation and local people.

Accommodation and Meals:
We will spend most nights in hotels and lodges as well as 3 nights in a full-service campsite on the Moonstone trek. In Peru, legal regulations are given by the Ministry of Labour as well as a code of conduct have to be signed by accommodation providers to encourage them to employ locals and use local production. On the Moonstone trek, all ingredients for the food prepared are purchased in local markets or from local suppliers. Recently, our local supplier stopped purchasing pre-packaged food and started using re-usable containers on treks which has significantly reduced the amount of plastics used on the road.

Few holidays have as little detrimental impact on the environment and local residents as a trekking trip. We believe in leaving no more than footprints, and remove all waste from campsites and separate it for easy recycling/composting. Our trek staff are trained and encouraged to put environmental protection practices into use in their own communities.

Water is a really important issue with trips such as this and whilst we must stay hydrated, it is also vital that we have a system for providing clean water without causing lots of waste with plastic bottles. Wherever possible we provide safe alternative sources of water to buying single use plastic bottles. This may be through large water containers, or encourage our passengers to filter, sterilise or purify water. We encourage all our passengers to come prepared with a reusable water bottle for this purpose.

Group Size:
This is a small group tour, meaning that we have a low impact on the environments and communities we visit and are able to ensure that we do not disrupt or lead to the displacement of local people. The small number also allows us to stay in unique, family-run hotels that cannot benefit from coach tours and other mass tourism due to their limited sizes.

UK Office:
It all starts at home where we work towards reducing our carbon footprint in our offices through energy conservation measures, recycling policies and the promotion of cycling and walking as a means for our staff to commute. Our head office has become a plastic-free zone with the use of plastic bottles being banned in our head office and we distributed reusable water bottles and tote bags to every staff member. We also support a large number of community and environmental projects in different parts of the world and try to give something back to the places we visit.


The Impacts of this Trip

In Cuzco, it is a good chance to visit Cafe Daria, the first vocational training site for young adults with disabilities in the area, creating employment opportunities for youth in their own community. In 2018, we funded £5,000 where during the first three months of operation has directly benefitted 15 youths as well as 52 other community members indirectly. Having a meal there is a great way to interact with the locals while also supporting a cause that gives those who would normally be isolated from society the opportunity to meet people from all over the world.

The porters we work with are not directly employed by our local partner but we work with the same communities each year; they are fairly paid and we also supply uniforms, walking shoes and provide safe transport and community support for them. Our trek manager is a leading figure and consultant for the Porters' Federation, which campaigns for the fair treatment of porters in the region.

Local craft and culture:
In Cuzco, there are plenty of opportunities for clients to support local craft especially in San Pedro market where clients can try some local produce and there are many handicraft markets to shop for souvenirs such as alpaca jumpers and scarves. When in the Sacred Valley, there will be time to visit the Pisac market which is famous for its locally handcrafted variety. Definitely, our local guides will advise clients on what to avoid buying such as items made from Condo’s feathers, wood from their primary endemic tree – Quenua and the husk of the Spectacled bear.

Peru is widely known for their food and the cuisine has developed a reputation for its flavours and originality. Our local guides will be sure to recommend and encourage clients to visit local restaurants and cafes to try some local specialties. The ingredients used in most of these restaurants are locally sourced to support the agriculture sector, one of the primary sectors for the economy. Some local delicacies include ceviche (a spicy dish of seafood or fish marinated in lime juice), lomo saltado (a Peruvian take on a beef stir-fry) and a variety of hearty soups like the delicious quinoa soup.


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