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Carabaya Trek 9D

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Why Book With Us?

  • High quality, personalized experience from start to finish
  • Unique, off-the-beaten track routes
  • Experienced staff
  • Verified sustainability practices
  • $20 of every trek donated to Threads of Peru

Threads of Peru

Martina Puma Ccama – Chaullacocha

Handy in the Andes

handy in the andes

  • Want to give back while on vacation? Do some good while having a blast and join us on one of our Clean Up Treks!                                                                                                  Read More


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9 Days / 8 Nights
Availability : We depart any day with 2 people; not recommended in Dec-Mar.
Puno or Cusco
Difficulty : ★★★★ Challenging
Adventure : ★★★★ Very adventurous
Solitude : ★★★★ Remote
Min Age : 10
Max People : 12
hours per day

One of the most adventurous treks around takes you into Carabaya, a remote and incredibly scenic province with unmatched opportunities for true high-altitude exploration. This Carabaya trek is offered by very few companies, making it one of the most off-the-beaten-track and challenging treks in the region. This is a high altitude trek and you should be well acclimatized. We offer this Carabaya Trek starting in Puno or in Cusco.

What to Expect on the Carabaya Trek

On the adventure-filled Carabaya Trek, you’ll go over high mountain passes, marvel at snow-capped peaks, cross rolling Andean tundra, and observe an abundance of wildlife.

This trek does not include a visit to Machu Picchu. To add this incredible site to your itinerary, check out our Machu Picchu Extensions!

Prices are per person in USD, based on group size. We do not have fixed-date group departures. If you do not want to book a private trek, please see our Trekkers Wanted page for a list of open departures within your dates.

2 people


4-6 people


7-8 people


9-12 people


What is Included?

  • Pre-trek briefing
  • Collection from your hotel on the morning of your Carabaya trek departure
  • Private transport from Puno or Cusco to the trailhead
  • English/Quechua/Spanish speaking professional guide, plus an assistant guide for groups over 8
  • Tent: 2 people in a 4-person tent, allowing for greater comfort and backpack storage!
  • Basic foam mattress. If you require greater comfort during the trek we can rent you an inflatable mattress. See Optional Extras & Upgrades below.
  • Cook and cooking equipment, plus assistants for larger groups.
  • Meals as indicated in the itinerary. Our professional cooks prepare a combination of traditional Peruvian and Western cuisine. Talk to your guide if you have certain preferences! Vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options available. When served, salads are washed in boiled water.
  • Toilet tent
  • Horses and horsemen, who carry camping equipment, food and kitchen utensils. We provide duffel bags at your briefing for your personal items (up to 7kg/15lbs per person).
  • 1 emergency horse which can be ridden if you are feeling ill or if you are a little slower
  • Dining tent with camp tables and chairs, and kitchen tent for the cook to prepare meals
  • Tents, sleeping bags and mattresses for our staff to sleep in, plus a budget for their meals
  • First aid kit including emergency oxygen bottle

If you depart from Cusco, the following are also included:

  • Private transport from Cusco to Puno
  • guided visits (entry fees not included)
  • Buffet lunch on route
  • Dinner in Puno
  • Overnight in Standard Puno Hotel

What is Not Included?

  • Breakfast on the first morning.
  • Lunch on the last day.
  • Sleeping bags. Available for rent if you don’t have one with you.
  • Entrance fees into sites along the Puno-Cusco corridor, if you depart from Cusco.
  • Tips for the guide, cook and porters
  • Additional horses for your personal luggage

You Should Bring

    See What To Bring for our comprehensive recommendations on what to pack for your trek. Note that this trek is particularly cold. Make sure you have enough very warm layers with you! For more great suggestions, check out our blog about How to Prepare for a Trek in Peru.

Optional Extras & Upgrades

    We offer you the opportunity to personalize your trek and make your experience more comfortable through our Optional Extras and Upgrades. All options are available during the reservation process; please ask your sales consultant for more information.

    • Extra horse to carry luggage exceeding the allowed 7kg (15lbs) per person
    • Extra horse for you to ride, and horseman to lead it
    • Sleeping Bag suitable for -5˚C
    • Deluxe sleeping bag suitable for -15˚C
    • Light-weight aluminum walking stick. Two sticks are recommended for tough hikes.
    • Thermarest inflatable mattress
    • Thermarest inflatable pillow
    • Single-occupancy tent supplement
    • Comfort Camping Upgrade
    • For even more adventure, add the Scramble up Cerro Yayamari
    • Combine with a Machu Picchu Extension


    • When calculating the cost of renting equipment, calculate using the length of the entire trip, not just the number of trekking days.
    • Please be careful with rented equipment! You are responsible for the cost of replacement if something is damaged or broken.
    • Any upgrades or trip extensions must be requested at time of booking.

Available Discounts

  • Students: USD $30 off, in certain circumstances. Please enquire for details about eligibility.
  • Youth 12-17: 5% off. A valid passport must be presented upon booking.
  • Children 5-11 years: 15% off. A valid passport must be presented upon booking.
  • Children 0-4 years: Free. A valid passport must be presented upon booking. Children under 4 will not count towards the total number of guests in a group. This discount does not apply to train fares. Children under 2 will not be considered to occupy a seat on any train or bus, and instead must ride on a parent’s lap.
  • 5% off a day tour listed price when you also book a 3-day or longer trek operated by Apus Peru

Trekkers Wanted

    Want to join a trek? Ready to confirm a departure date of your own, but interested in having others join you? Then Trekkers Wanted is for you! Our innovative Trekkers Wanted system matches people up who are interested in hiking the same trek, bringing costs down and multiplying the fun for everyone! Read More about Trekkers Wanted, post your trek or search for confirmed departures!

Important Info

  • Each guide has their own preferred route and so the route you trek might not correspond exactly to the route described here.
  • The times cited in this itinerary are approximate. Walking times depend on the group, and the guide may change lunch spots and campsites, depending on the progress of the group.
  • The Carabaya Trek is in the Ausangate region which is at very high altitude, and you’ll be hiking close to glaciers and snow-covered mountains. Translation: it’s very cold! Temperatures can fall well below freezing at night. We strongly recommend using a sleeping bag good for at least -15˚C (5˚F).
  • This is a totally off-the-beaten path trek, and tourist infrastructure is very limited. Instead, we’ll be making use of local facilities where possible.
  • Please note: this is a true adventure and things may not go exactly according to plan! Keep an open mind and let yourself enjoy the cultural differences you may experience. There is always an opportunity to learn something!

Ready to Book?

  • Does this trek sound like just what you were looking for? If you’re ready to book or just want to find out a bit more information, fill out the Inquiry Form in the top right-hand corner of this page to get the ball rolling. You’ll be connected with one of our amazing sales people who will be able to turn your dream of hiking in the Andes into a reality. For more information on the entire booking process, please see our How To Book page.
  • Travel insurance is a must! World Nomads offers travel insurance for adventure activities.

Day 1Puno - Veloyuc

    We leave Puno early for the 4h drive to the Carabaya Trek trailhead. There’s plenty to see as we pass rock gardens, giant bromeliads and locals tending their crops and animals. We’ll look down into the stupendous river canyon of the Corani River before turning off onto a back road with incredible views of the glacial valley that takes us to Aimaña. Here we’ll stop to check out the amazing rock formations before driving another 10 minutes to our first campsite, Veloyuc. With any luck we’ll spot vizcachas (Andean chinchillas) and views of snow-capped Quelqaya peak.

    Total Walking Distance –
    Total Walking Time – 5-6h
    Minimum Altitude – 3800m / 12,467 ft / 5000m / 16,404 ft / Maximum Altitude –
    Altitude of camp – 4536m / 14,882 ft
    Approx. night temperature – -5 ˚C to +5˚C (23˚F to 41˚F)

    Departing From Cusco
    The trip is 10 days / 9 nights if you depart from Cusco. Day 1 of the Cusco itinerary is as follows, with the rest of the itinerary being the same.

    Day 1 Cusco-Puno
    We pick you up around 8am in our private car and begin heading south towards Puno.
    The trip to Puno takes about 10 hours and includes a buffet lunch. Our first stop will be Pikillacta (a pre-Inca city whose name means ‘Place of the Flea’ in the Inca language, Quechua!) where you can stand in an Inca gate that demarcated Collasuyo, one of the four quarters of the Incan empire known as Tawantinsuyo. After this, we continue on to the colonial church of Andahuaylillas, the ‘Sistine Chapel of the Americas’; it has to be seen to be believed! The spectacular Inca ruin of Raqchi is another highlight, and the incredibly ancient remains of Pukara round out the day.

    Tonight, your meal is included at a Puno restaurant, and accommodation in a Standard Hotel. You should enjoy an early night and hot shower before setting out for the Carabaya Trek the next day!

Day 2Veloyuc - Hydroelectric Station

    After an early start we’ll head out east, spending five or six hours gently ascending 600m (1970 ft) through open valleys, past immense rivers and more bosques de piedra (rock forests) to the small valley where a scenic campsite near some hydroelectric infrastructure awaits.

    Total Walking Distance –
    Total Walking Time – 5-6h
    Minimum Altitude – 4536m / 14,882 ft / Maximum Altitude – 4700m / 15,420 ft
    Altitude of camp – 4655m / 15,272 ft
    Approx. night temperature – -5 ˚C to +5˚C (23˚F to 41˚F)

Day 3Hidroelectric Station - Chimboya

    Today we climb to and camp at our first high pass, Chimboya, at 5122m (16,800 ft). It takes about six hours to complete the ascent. At the pass we’ll enjoy well-deserved views of the Vilcanota range against the endless backdrop of the main Cordillera of the Andes, accompanied by curious llamas, alpacas and vicuñas.

    Total Walking Distance –
    Total Walking Time – 5-6h
    Minimum Altitude – 4655m / 15,272 ft / Maximum Altitude – 5122 m / 16,800 ft
    Altitude of camp – 5122 m / 16,800 ft
    Approx. night temperature – -5 ˚C to +5˚C (23˚F to 41˚F)

Day 4Chimboya - Hacienda Mates

    We continue to enjoy spectacular views of the glacier-topped Vilcanota range as we make our way through a varied landscape of swamp and open pampa (flat grasslands) to Hacienda Mates, our campsite for the night in a sheltered valley surrounded by steep slopes.

    Total Walking Distance –
    Total Walking Time – 5-6h
    Minimum Altitude – 4773 m / 15,660 ft / Maximum Altitude – 5122m / 16,800 ft
    Altitude of camp – 4773 m / 15,660 ft
    Approx. night temperature – -5 ˚C to +5˚C (23˚F to 41˚F)

Day 5Hacienda Mates - Cascara

    Today a rewarding 7h walk first brings us up to a breathtaking altitude of more than 5000m (16,400 ft). From here we’ll have equally breathtaking views of the Nudo del Vilcanota (“Vilcanota knot”) and our first glimpses of the mysterious lakes, Sibinacocha and Cascara. We’ll see pink flamingos and vicuñas as we cross the Pucamayu river and make our way to our campsite at Cascara. Here we can fish in the lake and observe migrating ducks and other wetlands birds.

    Total Walking Distance –
    Total Walking Time – 6-7h
    Minimum Altitude – 4773m / 15,660 ft / Maximum Altitude – 5000m / 16,404 ft
    Altitude of camp – 4900 m / 16,076 ft
    Approx. night temperature – -5 ˚C to +5˚C (23˚F to 41˚F)

Day 6Cascara - Sibinacocha

    Another big pass awaits us, Yayamari, at 5100m (16,730 ft). From here we’ll experience the most stunning views yet with lakes, nearby towering rock outcrops, many massive peaks, and the gorgeous Sibinacocha lake, to which we will descend to camp.

    For more adventure, check out our Yayamari Scramble Extension, a non-technical climb up Cerro Yayamari.

    Total Walking Distance –
    Total Walking Time – 7h
    Minimum Altitude – 4900m / 16,076 ft / Maximum Altitude – 5100m / 16,732 ft
    Altitude of camp – 4900 m / 16,076 ft
    Approx. night temperature – -5 ˚C to +5˚C (23˚F to 41˚F)

Day 7Sibinacocha - Killita

    After a morning walking through the gentle pampas of Sibinacocha, we’ll ascend about an hour to the important Condor Pass at an astounding 5235m (17,175 ft). From here we’ll see magnificent views which include the even higher, ice-covered Acero Pass (5500m / 18,050 ft), before descending for half an hour and walking another hour or so over gentle terrain to our campsite at Killita.

    Total Walking Distance –
    Total Walking Time – 4735 m / 15540 ft / Maximum Altitude – 5235m / 17,175 ft
    Altitude of camp – 4735 m / 15,540 ft
    Approx. night temperature – -5 ˚C to +5˚C (23˚F to 41˚F)

Day 8Killita - Ninapara

    This morning we’ll walk around two hours to Paso Falso (False Pass) from where we’ll take in the magnificence of the towering Ausangate, the highest peak in the Cusco region and its most important apu (mountain deity). Then it’s an afternoon of ups and downs. First, we’ll descend to the community of Ccampa, then climb back up to Ccampa Pass (5080m / 16,666 ft), then descend again to Ninapara where we’ll spend the night.

    Total Walking Distance –
    Total Walking Time – 6-7h
    Minimum Altitude – 4656m / 15,275 ft / Maximum Altitude – 5080m / 16,666 ft
    Altitude of camp – 4656m / 15,275 ft
    Approx night temperature – -5 ˚C to +5˚C (23˚F to 41˚F)

Day 9Ninapara - Cusco

    We start our last day with an up and a down on our final walk past the awesome Ausangate, and three hours down to Pacchanta where we’ll enjoy lunch and a soak in the local natural hot springs! After lunch we’ll drive for about four hours back to Cusco, feeling extremely accomplished and proud and of completing this stunning Carabaya Trek!

    Total Walking Distance –
    Total Walking Time – 4h
    Minimum Altitude – 4336m / 14,225 ft / Maximum Altitude – 4656m / 15,275 ft

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