Experience a special 2-day journey on the Short Inca Trail to Machu Picchu with exclusive services. This tour is designed for those with limited time but a desire for a unique adventure. Enjoy stunning views, historic sites, and lush nature as you walk towards the famous Machu Picchu. 

Relax in comfortable overnight accommodation and take advantage of a personalized experience with top-notch service. Plus, return in style to the Panoramic Vistadome Trains, which offers incredible scenic views through large windows and a glass roof. Embark on this memorable adventure today and enjoy a special glimpse into a majestic world!

Trek details

2 days 1 night
Hiking - Adventures - Hotel
Maximum Altitude
2700m - 8858ft
Inca Trail & Machu Picchu
Group Size
6 to 10 people

Join us for a unique two-day journey on the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, designed for both comfort and rich exploration. This tour includes expert guides who will share fascinating stories and insights about ancient Inca culture as you travel.

The two-day Inca Trail covers the final part of the classic Inca Trail route, featuring remarkable sites like Wiñaywayna and stunning views from the Sun Gate. You’ll arrive at Machu Picchu in the afternoon when it’s less crowded, allowing for a peaceful and personal experience of this ancient wonder.

On your second day, take your time exploring the best parts of Machu Picchu, really immersing yourself in this magical place. Return in style on the b, which offers incredible views of the surrounding mountains and forests through its large windows and glass roof. This two-day Inca Trail to Machu Picchu tour is an unforgettable way to experience one of the world’s most iconic sites, perfectly blending adventure with luxury.


  • Hike the last part of the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu.
  • Enjoy the stunning views from the Sun Gate.
  • Visit Machu Picchu twice when it's not crowded.
  • Explore the ancient Inca site of Wiñaywayna.
  • Take the Vistadome Panoramic train to return.

Short Inca Trail at a Glance:

Day 1: Cusco — Km 104 — Machu Picchu — Aguas Calientes

  • Hotel pick-up and drive to Ollantaytambo (1.5 hours).
  • Board the train to Km 104 to begin the Short Inca Trail.
  • Embark on a 7-hour hike along the forgotten Inca Trail.
  • Explore Inca Sites: Chachabamba and Wiñaywayna.
  • Arrive at Machu Picchu via the Sun Gate in the afternoon.
  • Overnight stay at a 3-star hotel in Aguas Calientes.

Day 2: Machu Picchu (The Lost City of the Incas) — Cusco

  • Early breakfast at the hotel.
  • Board the first bus to Machu Picchu.
  • Engage in a 3-hour guided tour of key attractions.
  • After the tour, freely explore or opt to climb Machu Picchu Mountain or Huayna Picchu.
  • Return on the Panoramic Vistadome Train
  • Arrive back at your hotel in Cusco around 7:30 pm.

Optional hikes after Machu Picchu Tour:

  • Huayna Picchu Mountain: Additional ticket cost of $68 per person.
  • Machu Picchu Mountain: Additional ticket cost of $68 per person.
Full Itinerary
Day 1: Cusco — Km 104 — Machu Picchu — Aguas Calientes

After an early 4:00 a.m. pickup from your hotel in Cusco, embark on a 1.5-hour drive to Ollantaytambo. From there, you'll board the first train to Km 104 - Chachabamba, marking the start of the Short Inca Trail 2 days to Machu Picchu. Upon reaching Km 104, you'll need to present your original passport for entry.

Your adventure begins with a visit to the Chachabamba archaeological site. Under the guidance of your tour guide, you'll explore and delve into its rich history. Following this, you'll set out on the lost Inca Trail. Although the trail is narrow, it offers mesmerizing views. A four-hour hike will lead you to Wiñaywayna, one of the most magnificent Inca sites along the trail. Here, you can admire its intricate architecture, streets, water fountains, and temples. Midday, you'll enjoy a delicious boxed lunch at a nearby campsite.

After lunch, you'll resume your journey with an easier one-hour hike to the Sun Gate. Along the way, you might spot beautiful orchids and a variety of birds. As you reach the Sun Gate, prepare to be greeted by the breathtaking sight of Machu Picchu. The final leg of today's hike, an hour-long descent, will bring you to the upper region of Machu Picchu by around 4:00 p.m., a time with fewer tourists. This offers a serene environment to take photos and watch the sunset over the ancient citadel.

Your day concludes with a bus ride to Aguas Calientes, where you'll check into your hotel and rest.

  • Aguas Calientes Altitude: 2000m - 6561ft
  • Highest altitude: 2700m - 8858ft
  • Distance: 15km - 8 miles
  • Duration: 7 hours
  • Meals: lunch, dinner
  • Accommodation: 3-star hotel in Aguas Calientes
  • Difficulty: Moderate
Day 2: Machu Picchu (The Lost City of the Incas) — Cusco

Start your day early with a hearty breakfast at the hotel before catching the first bus to Machu Picchu to witness the mesmerizing sunrise. Once there, embark on a guided tour of this iconic Inca citadel. Your knowledgeable guide will lead you through the most captivating parts of Machu Picchu.

After your guided tour, you'll have personal time to explore the citadel at your own pace or undertake optional hikes to either Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain. Please note that these hikes are separate from the Machu Picchu citadel tour and are not included in your package.

After exploring the ancient wonders, take the bus down to Aguas Calientes. Enjoy lunch at your own expense before boarding the Vistadome train back to Ollantaytambo. Upon arrival, our private transport will take you back to your hotel, with an expected arrival time of 7:30 p.m.

  • Aguas Calientes: 2000m - 6561ft
  • Highest altitude: 2400m - 7874ft
  • Duration: 3 hours
  • Meals: breakfast at the hotel


  • Pre-departure safety briefing.
  • Hotel pick-up and drop-off.
  • Professional tour guide.
  • All transportation costs.
  • Accommodation: 3-star hotel in Aguas Calientes.
  • Entrance ticket to the Inca Trail.
  • Entrance ticket to Machu Picchu.
  • All necessary bus tickets to Machu Picchu.
  • Meals: 1 box lunch and 1 dinner at a local restaurant.
  • First Aid Kit and Oxygen tank.
  • Round-trip train tickets.
  • Vistadome Panoramic return train.
  • All booking fees and taxes.

Not Included

  • First breakfast and second-day lunch
  • Travel Insurance

What will I see on the 2-day Inca Trail to Machu Picchu?

During your two-day trek to Machu Picchu, you will experience breathtaking views of the Andes, walk through misty cloud forests filled with exotic plants and wildlife, and explore fascinating archaeological sites like Wiñay Wayna. The journey culminates at the famous Sun Gate, where you'll catch a stunning first glimpse of Machu Picchu.

Is the short Inca Trail as hard as the 4-day trek?

The short Inca Trail is easier than the four-day trek. It covers less distance and has fewer steep climbs, making it suitable for those who want a less strenuous journey while still experiencing the trail's beauty and history.

Where does the short Inca Trail start?

The journey begins at the 104-kilometer marker along the railway line from Cusco to Machu Picchu. This point is accessible by train, which is a scenic ride itself, offering glimpses of rural Andean landscapes and the Urubamba River.

What is the best time to hike the Short Inca Trail?

The short Inca Trail is best during the dry season, from May to September, when the weather is most favorable. Clear skies and milder temperatures make for ideal hiking conditions.

What should I pack for the Short Inca Trail?

Essential items for the Short Inca Trail include:

  • Comfortable hiking shoes/boots
  • Lightweight clothing (quick-drying) for layering
  • Warm layers for the evening
  • Rain gear
  • Sun protection (hat, sunglasses, sunscreen)
  • Insect repellent
  • Personal medications and a basic first-aid kit
  • Water bottle or hydration system
  • High-energy snacks
  • Passport (must match the information on your permit)
  • Camera and extra batteries

What kind of places will I stay at during the trail?

We provide a 3-star hotel in Aguas Calientes. We also a camping option, you can hike the Short Inca Trail with camping.

How much does the short Inca Trail cost?

Compared to longer treks, the 2-day Inca Trail is more affordable, mainly because it requires fewer days of guidance, support, and food, which reduces the overall cost. Expect to pay between $400 and $600 depending on the level of service and the time of year.

When should I book the 2-day Inca Trail to get a permit?

To secure your spot on the 2-day Inca Trail, it's best to book your trip about 4 to 6 months in advance. During peak tourist seasons, like the summer months from May to September, permits can sell out quickly due to high demand.

What food is provided on this trek?

During the trek, Ultimate Trekking provides meals, including a box lunch on day 1, Dinner in a Local restaurant, and one breakfast. We provide nutritious meals are designed to keep you energized, including breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks.

Do I need to be very fit to do the short Inca Trail?

While you don't need to be an athlete, a basic level of fitness is recommended for the short Inca Trail. The trek involves some uphill walking and high-altitude conditions, so being in good health will help you enjoy the experience more comfortably.

How does Ultimate Trekking organize the 2-day trek?

At Ulitmate Trekking, we carefully plan the two-day trek by arranging all necessary permits, providing experienced guides, and handling logistics from transportation to meals. The guides focus on small groups to ensure personalized attention and better enjoyment of the trek.

What do people say about Ultimate Trekking's short Inca Trail tours?

Our reviews highlight how organized tours, knowledgeable and friendly guides, and the overall excellent quality of the trekking experience. Many appreciate the intimate group sizes and the focus on making each trek memorable.

What history will I learn on the trail?

The Inca Trail is rich in history. Guides will share stories about the Inca civilization, the trail's purpose, and the various archaeological sites along the way, deepening your understanding of how the Incas lived and built their empire.

How many people are in each trek group?

Typically, each group on Ultimate Trekking's short Inca Trail tours consists of about 4 to 12 people. This smaller group size ensures a more intimate and engaging experience, allowing the guide to cater to individual needs and interests.

Can I visit extra sites like Huayna Picchu on this trek?

Adding a visit to Huayna Picchu is possible with prior arrangements. This requires an additional permit and should be booked well in advance due to the limited number of visitors allowed each day. It's a challenging climb but rewards with incredible views.

Does the trek harm the environment?

Responsible tour operators like Ultimate Trekking implement eco-friendly practices to minimize the environmental impact of their treks. This includes following strict waste disposal policies and educating trekkers on respecting the natural and cultural sites.

Can the food meet my diet needs?

Yes, dietary needs can be accommodated with advance notice. Whether you have allergies, follow a vegetarian or vegan diet, or have other specific food requirements, we can make arrangements to ensure you have suitable meals throughout the trek.

What safety steps are in place on the trail?

Safety is a priority on the trail. Our measures include professional guides trained in first aid and emergency response plans. We are equipped with communication tools to handle any situation that may arise during the hike, including satellite phones and a first aid kit.

How does the trek benefit local communities?

The trek supports local communities by providing jobs and supporting local businesses. Ultimate Trekking contributes to local projects that improve infrastructure and education, helping to preserve the culture and support the people who live along the trail.