Tika Trek - Cusco, Peru
Peru Biking Trip - Tika Trek - Cusco, Peru

Peru Biking Trip

Special offer

This wonderful tour departs on Sunday the 24th of June 2012 at a price of $2800US per person. Come join us.

We'll bike to Machu Picchu, ride myriad tracks around the hills of Cusco, and cycle from Maras to Salineras - two unique and incredible Incan sites. Cycle through the incomparable farmland and river gorges of the Lares Valley, camping overnight along the way at high-altitude, natural thermal hot baths perched over a jagged river gorge! Mix hiking and biking single-track or easy downhill road riding in any combination. Optional rides for confident riders include taking on the Red Bull Mega Avalanche ride. Whether you’re a seasoned biker or just starting out - if you enjoy riding, this is the trip for you!

Peru Biking Trip

Day 1. Orientation in Cusco

We’ll meet in the hotel lobby at high noon today and head off for a traditional Peruvian lunch at our favourite local restaurant. Lunch is the main meal of the day here in Peru, and Sunday’s is traditionally huge – this is an excellent opportunity to carbo load for the missions ahead! We’ll leave the afternoon flexible so you can get to know Cusco, shop, rest, or wander around.

It’s a good idea to take it easy today and hydrate like crazy as you adjust to the 3,300-metre altitude. If you have the time to arrive a couple of days early, this really helps with acclimatisation. There’s plenty to do in Cusco and we can help make arrangements.

Meals L,D.
Accommodation Hotel in Cusco

Day 2. Yuncaypata - the fun begins

Like many Andean cities, Cusco sits in the flat bottom of a steep-sided, horseshoe-shaped valley. The long hill that defines the north side of town is riddled with mountain bike terrain, ranging from easy 4x4 track to gnarly downhill. Easy, fast, public-transport access to this terrain is probably one of the reasons mountain biking has taken off like it has in Cusco. We’ll drive to the top of the hill in our own vehicle, then bike back down any of dozens of tracks that bring us back into the heart of Cusco. We’ll have time for multiple laps if you’re keen.

Meals B,L,D.
Accommodation Hotel in Cusco

Day 3. Downhill to Pisac, the Sacred valley of the Incas

There’s something for everyone today: single track, speedy sealed-road downhill, and shopping!

We’re heading to Pisac, 30km from Cusco and 600 metres lower. To get there, we can ride straight down the highway – a long, looping, and scenic descent that’s a lot of fun for any rider. Or, we can get there by the single track that heads straight down the deep gorge by the highway, before winding and dropping through farmland and villages. We’ll have lunch in a restaurant in Pisac, and show you around this charming, historic Inca/colonial village. Pisac is home to the most famous artesania (handcraft) market in the region, and this is a perfect opportunity to do some souvenir shopping.

In the afternoon, we’ll drive up the other side of the valley to the entrance to the Pisac ruins. From here, enjoy another speedy, sealed-road descent, or walk down through the famous ruined fort that towers over Pisac (entrance not included). Or you can choose to spend this afternoon shopping, wandering around town, or going for a swim in Pisac’s swanky, Olympic-sized swimming pool!

Meals B,L,D.
Accommodation Hotel in Pisac

Day 4. Ride and camp in the Lares valley

For two days we’ll cycle through the remote Lares Valley. This is rugged country where subsistence farmers somehow eke out a living, surrounded by bare, precipitous slopes and jagged mountain peaks. This will be two days of riding you’ll never forget. It will be cross-country but mostly downhill - it has to be at this altitude! There's some fairly easy track and plenty of coasting along the road today, through an ever greener and steeper river valley. Tonight's accommodation is an absolute treat - the Lares hot springs, where naturally occurring hot springs have been lovingly terraced and landscaped into a surreal water park perched on the side of a rugged river gorge. Tonight we'll enjoy a well-earned soak in the healing mineral waters as we admire the millions of stars above!

Meals B,L,D
Accommodation Camping

Day 5. The Biking day of a lifetime

This morning an incredibly scenic drive takes us up to the dizzying Lares pass, and to the top of one of Peru's premier off-road descents. Section follows section of llama track, gravel riverside, and eventually scenic river gorge. We'll end with an array of undulating riverside single track (or take the open, speedy gravel backroad alongside) into the outskirts of Calca, back once more in the sunny Sacred Valley. From here we'll drive back to Cusco for the night.

Meals B,L,D,
Accommodation Hotel in Cusco

Day 6. Free day in Cusco

Today is yours to explore Cusco, one of the most fascinating cities in the world. There’s culture aplenty with museums, churches, galleries and more. Or if you’re feeling like a little retail therapy, Cusco offers everything from folksy artesanias of every possible kind, through indigenous markets selling potatoes by the sack and frogs by the bucket, to exquisite handcrafted jewellery and avant-garde fashion. It’s also perfect for just wandering – through ancient, llama-width cobbled alleyways that open up into charming plazas, and there are stunning cityscapes and inviting cafés at every turn. We’re here to help with recommendations, suggestions and directions!

We’ll leave you to sort out your own meals today – if you want a packed lunch, just let us know and we’ll organise it for you.

Meals B
Accommodation Hotel in Cusco

Day 7. Maras and the Inca salt mines

Today’s ride takes us from one Inca site, the mysterious experimental complex of Maras, to another - the spectacular, surreal, Salineras saltpans. Maras consists of three deep, terraced amphitheatres. Controversy rages as to their purpose (the Incas left no written records) but best guess is that it was an agricultural laboratory where they tried out different crops at different altitudes and angles to the sun. Whatever it was, it’s an impressive sight. Salineras is even better – a still-working ancient salt factory that’s as beautiful as it is fascinating, with a patchwork of coloured pools twinkling under the sun. We think it’s one of the most spectacular Incan sites of the whole trip.

In between the two is an easy intermediate level ride (or you can walk it) with all the features you’ll already be coming to take for granted – great range of terrain, consistent downhill, and breathtaking scenery – as we descend, you’re looking straight at the main range of the Andes.

Meals B,L,D
Accommodation Hotel in Urubamba

Day 8. Into the Amazon Basin

This morning we drive up to Abra Malaga, one of the highest points on the trip at 4,350 metres, and from here descend into the Amazon basin on bikes, losing about 1,300 metres of altitude over up to 71km of road (it’s up to you how much you ride!). The scenery is different from anything we’ve seen before as we descend into the rainforest, and there are lots of photo opportunities along the way as the road snakes down through ever lusher vegetation. There are a few short, optional sections of single track along the way, or you can stick to the road which is sealed for the first 20km and gravel thereafter.

It's not hard to see why this ride is one of Peru's classics, and often favourably compared to Bolivia's infamous ‘Death Road’. It's pure fun - a long, looping descent through some of the most spectacular landscape you'll ever see. By the time we get to Santa Teresa, at 1,900 metres, we’re in high jungle - a whole different world! Tonight we'll camp in a lush rainforest gorge by the side of a rushing river.

Meals B,L,D.
Accommodation Rustic Eco lodge

Day 9. Extreme activity or relaxing day, then on to Machu Picchu

This morning we’ll experience Cola de Mono, South America’s highest zipline (flying fox). After being harnessed up, kitted out and fully briefed, we’ll each whizz across six separate sections of line strung across the precipitous Sacsara Valley, a narrow fold in the Andes between Santa Teresa and Machu Picchu. The scenery is spectacular and the ride surprisingly serene; you won’t forget this experience in a hurry.

There’ll also be time today for soaking in the glorious Cocalmayo natural hot pools – natural thermal springs beside a raging river, the perfect place to soak away any aches and pains!
If you’re keen and the current train timetable permits, there’s the possibility of the taxing but incredibly rewarding, little-known hike to Llactapata, a recently discovered Inca ruin that nestles into a jungle hilltop. The five-hour hike includes stunning views of precipitous jungle hillsides and sinuous river valleys, and even a few glimpses of Machu Picchu to whet our appetites for tomorrow. Let your guide know if you’re interested in doing this hike and we’ll organize transport and a guide for you.
Later today we’ll take a short train ride to Machu Picchu Pueblo (town), also known as Aguas Calientes, where we’ll have dinner at Indio Feliz – a fancy, French restaurant whose incredibly yummy food is world famous in Peru. Then it’s off for an early night – we’ll be at Machu Picchu in time for sunrise tomorrow!

Meals B,L,D.
Accommodation Hotel in Machu Picchu town.

Day 10. Machu Picchu

We’ll set out by 6am to get up the hill before the crowds arrive from Cusco, and spend the day exploring the words-fail-me glory that is Machu Picchu – one of the new Seven Wonders of the World. We’ll have a guided tour plus plenty of time to explore on our own or climb for breathtaking views up one or more stunning nearby peaks: Huayna Picchu, Putucusi or Machu Picchu mountain itself. Later we’ll take the scenic train to Ollantaytambo in time for dinner and a peaceful night's sleep in this charming, largely pedestrian-only village.

Meals B,L,D.
Accommodation Hotel in Ollantaytambo

Day 11. Redbull Mega Avalanche course

Today we head back up Abra Malaga (Malaga Pass), and from here descend a massive 1,500 metres over 20km to Ollantaytambo. You can choose how to do this – either on sealed road or an international downhill racetrack. The road is spectacular in itself, winding down from the glacial heights of the high mountains to the sunny, spring-like Sacred Valley.

For our more advanced riders, today’s single track is probably the most radical we’ll see on this trip. While the road zigzags across the face of the range, the track here drops straight down, and has everything – mud, drops, super fast sections, and stone walls to name just a few features – it’s really exciting stuff. We'll all spend the morning out here, while in the afternoon you're free to pull out a few more descents, or explore Ollantaytambo, perhaps the most perfectly preserved of all Inca towns and a must on any trip to Peru, with atmospheric cobbled alleyways and elaborately carved stone irrigation systems, presided over by a spectacular, llama-shaped ruin.

Meals B,L,D.
Accommodation Hotel in Ollantaytambo

Day 12. Bike or Hike little known ruins

After a scenic morning driving back through the Sacred Valley and over the range towards Cusco, we'll jump out in the hills above Cusco and either hike or bike some lovely farmland and forest single track, to the mysterious yet charming Templo de la Luna (Temple of the Moon) and Cueva de Monos (Cave of Monkeys), before a series of stone staircases brings us out in the heart of cafe-paradise San Blas, just a stone's throw from our hotel!

There's time this afternoon for last minute shopping or sightseeing before our final dinner together.

Meals B,L,D.
Accommodation Hotel in Cusco

Day 13. Departure Day

We’ll collect rental bikes, or help you dismantle your bike to pack up this morning before dropping you off at the airport. See you next time!

Accommodation N/A

Difficulty

Easy - Mid.

Included

Not Included