The Inca Trail is on the list of levels for many adventure travelers, and rightly so, as it is a breathtaking hike through the old Inkan Trails to the magical ruins of Machu Picchu. There are many myths and lies written about this trip, this article seeks to eliminate them and provide realistic advice for those who are planning their vacation on the Inca Trail.
1) The Inca route is crowded and you can not move for other passengers
I have read this statement many times in various guide books and blogs, so until I came to do this walk myself, I expected to fight for space in the paths. In June, just in the middle of the peak season, and on days 2 and 3, when I could hardly see another climber, I walked. Space on the route is currently limited to 500 people per day, which includes about 300 porters, all of whom leave early in the morning, so you can actually find peace and quiet while walking.
Of course, the camps along the way are busier, especially on the last night when everyone is camping in Machu Picchu as much as possible. But at this time your focus will be on reaching the Sun Gate the next morning (and taking care of sore feet), so the tent lines should not bother you too much.
2) Height makes walking possible only for great fitness
It is true that the most difficult part of walking on the Inca route is altitude. Many people fly to Cusco to start their journey, and at an altitude of 3,500 meters, the adaptation takes a few days. Most people suffer from altitude sickness to some extent, the most common symptoms of which are headache, nausea, shortness of breath, dizziness and loss of appetite. These go away after 36 hours. The best advice is to drink plenty of fluids, rest and do not push yourself for the first day or two.
After walking, the key to achieving Machu Picchu is to walk at your desired pace, get plenty of rest, and drink plenty of water. The second day, when you climb from an altitude of 4300 meters, is the hardest day and most people go through it, they just have to walk slowly and rest regularly.
3) Doing the Inca route independently is cheaper
Independent walking was possible in the Inca, and in recent years many people have visited Machu Picchu. Since 2002, the route has been regulated by Peruvian authorities, who issue permits through authorized representatives. License terms and conditions mean you have to walk with guides and porters. In this way, rigorous checks are made to ensure that all climbers are licensed.
4) Buying licenses online is cheaper
While it is possible to shop online or take your Inca Trail vacation online, permits can only be obtained by authorized representatives in Peru. In order to do so, they must obtain your passport and deposit information. The local government agency issues 500 licenses daily, and you can check their availability on the official government website.
5) Carriers are all mistreated
While historically porters were mistreated and underpaid, passengers ‘awareness of responsible travel is much higher, and it is ensured that porters’ well-being is transferred to the consciousness of many passengers. However, price competition means that all aspects of service on the routes, including wages, are still under pressure. You can support your carrier by making sure you book your trip through a reputable operator who provides the right shoes and food. You can also increase your salary by a certain amount at the end of the trip.