Waqrapukara Trek 1D

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Duration: 1 Day
Availability : Every Day.
Depart: Huayqui
Destination: Waqrapukara
Min Age : 8
Max People : 12

About the Waqrapukara Trek

Impressive ruins, beautiful scenery and no crowds – Waqrapukara is without a doubt one of the best one day treks you can do in Cusco. Want something totally different? Leave behind the usual tourist circuits in the Sacred Valley and Cusco’s South Valley and head towards the Apurimac river to experience the scenic and secluded Waqrapukara ruins.


See Full Description

The Incan “Horn Fortress” – as the name means in Quechua – is a fascinating archeological site perched atop a rocky outcrop, where the masonry seamlessly merges with the two horn-shaped mountain peaks. Our off-the-beaten-path Waqrapukara trek starts in Huayqui and continues through stunning scenery for about 3 hours until we reach the Inca fortress. Waqrapukara is actually still somewhat shrouded in mystery, as archaeological research has only been under way for X years. Many people also say that Waqrapukara has a special energy. If you want to experience Andean mysticism and feel a real connection to the ancient past, then you can’t miss this day hike.
Waqrapukara is located in Cusco’s Acomayo province, and the trail passes through several ecological zones as you ascend about 550m from the trailhead to the site. The scenery is spectacular and unique for a Cusco trek; if you’re lucky, you might spot vicunas, or even condors! This hike is a circuit; you will walk the same path there and back.

Read about Apus Peru’s team building trip to Waqrapukara!

Make Waqrapukara a 2-day Trip and see the Q’eswachaka Bridge!

Add another day to your Waqrapukara hike itinerary and visit the famous Q’eswachaka Bridge ! This unique Inca rope bridge is rebuilt in a special ceremony every year. The Q’eswachaka bridge festival happens every June but you can visit the bridge any day of the year.

Waqrapukara Trek 1 Day Highlights

  • The Waqrapukara trek is a wonderful way to escape the crowds on a day hike from Cusco.
  • Be amazed by jaw-dropping mountain vistas and expect to spot elusive Andean wildlife.
  • Visit fascinating and little-known Incan ruins and hopefully have a mystical experience in the Andes!


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


3 people


4-6 people


7+ people


High quality personalized experience

Unique, off-the-beaten track routes

Experienced staff

Verified sustainability practices

$20 of every trek donated to Threads of Peru

Details About the Waqrapukara Trek 1 Day

What is Included?


  • Boxed breakfast and lunch.  Talk to your Travel Consultant during the booking process if you have certain preferences! Vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options available


  • Collection from your hotel on the morning of your Waqrapukara trek departure
  • Private transport from Cusco to the trailhead and return at the end of the trek

Trekking Team

  • English/Quechua/Spanish speaking professional guide, plus an assistant guide for groups over 8


  • First aid kit including emergency oxygen bottle
  • 1 emergency horse which can be ridden if you are feeling ill or if you are a little slower

Additional inclusions

  • Pre-trek briefing
  • Any applicable entry fees

What is Not Included?


  • Dinner


  • Additional horses for your personal luggage or to ride


  • Tips for the guide, cook and muleteers
  • Flights to/from Cusco
  • Travel Insurance

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.

Equipment Available for Rent

  • Extra horse to carry luggage exceeding the allowed 8kg (17lbs) per person
  • Extra horse for you to ride, and horseman to lead it
  • Light-weight aluminum walking stick. Two sticks are recommended for tough hikes.

Optional Activities


  • 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. Car seats, cribs and other baby needs may not be included and must be discussed in advance. For more information about travelling with infants and toddlers, please see this blog as well as the Age Requirements section of our Booking Conditions.
  • 5% off a day tour listed price when you also book a 3-day or longer trek operated by Apus Peru

What to Pack

See What To Bring for our comprehensive recommendations on what to pack for your trek. For more great suggestions, check out our blog about How to Prepare for a Trek in Peru.

Guides & Safety on the Trail

Our whole trekking team know the region like the back of their hand! They are some of the warmest, endearing and wonderful people you are ever likely to meet.

Our guides are all licensed and receive regular training. They share their experience, professionalism, knowledge and enthusiasm with our passengers on every trek.

Get to know our team!

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 Waqrapukara itinerary are approximate. Walking times depend on the group, and the guide may change lunch spots depending on the progress of the group.
  • Remember that no trek in the Andes is easy. You still should be fit and prepared to hike in difficult conditions.

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.

Waqrapukara Trek 1 Day Itinerary

Day 1Cusco - Huayqui - Suythuwanca - Waqrapukara - Cusco

    • Total Walking Distance: 15km
    • Total Walking Time: 5-6h
    • Minimum Altitude: 3350m (10,991 ft) / Maximum Altitude: 4150m (13,615 ft)

    Starting Out on the Waqrapukara Trek

    We begin our trek to Waqrapukara by car, leaving Cusco in our private transport at around 4am. A very early start to what will be quite a long day! We are heading south on a paved road, in the direction of Puno, towards a small community called Choquecahuana. This is located in a Cusco district called Acomayo. Along the way, we will pass the impressive Pomacanchis lagoon and several picturesque villages until we reach the Huascar junction where the paved road ends, and adventure begins. We continue on a hardened dirt road until we reach Huayqui (also spelled Wayki or Wayqui), the trailhead for our Waqrapukara trek (3350m/ 10,991 ft).

    Before we begin the hike to Waqrapukara we’ll get to share breakfast with a local family. Then it’s time to set out! The first part of our walk takes us to Suythuwanca, which will take about an hour and a half. From here, we continue walking uphill for another 1h30 along a winding path, bordered by mountains. The views here are out of this world! In addition to these breathtaking vistas, we will be treated to fascinating ancient rock paintings along the way. Some of these cave paintings are in a great state of preservation.

    Arriving at the Inca Horn Fortress

    Finally, we will arrive at Waqrapukara (4150m / 13,615 ft). We’ll rest and enjoy a boxed lunch before starting our guided tour of this mysterious Inca fortress. In Quechua, Waqrapukara actually means “Horn Fortress,” from the words waqra (“horn”) and pukara (“fortress”), and it is a real sight to behold. It is the horn-like rock formations that likely give the Inca fortress its name.

    Waqrapukara is an imposing archaeological feature perched on a mountain top, surrounded by gorgeous, lush scenery. We’ll have about an hour to explore this fascinating site. Signs direct us to the different areas of the site, which actually includes several structures.

    When we’ve had our fill of Inca history and interesting ruins, we will return along the same path. As we walk another 2h to our starting point, we’ll have one last opportunity to take in the stunning beauty of the surrounding mountains. We’ll even have a glimpse of Mount Veronica (5700m / 18,700ft)!

    Finally, we arrive at Paltacancha where our vehicle will be waiting to take us back to Cusco, arriving at about 7pm.


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