acclimatized to high altitude for at least two days before
starting the trek.
drink the local water. A seasoned traveller I talked to
always takes a water purification system. She recommends
'Pristine.' It's totally
safe. Editor's Note: You might also try Aquatabs,
a member of the Journeywoman network of classified advertisers.
people got diarrhea from the food provided.
you have an opportunity to taste the national drink 'pisco,'
make sure it's not made with raw egg whites, which is
the traditional way of preparing it.
ice cubes in your drinks.
careful with raw foods - 'ceviche' (marinated raw fish)
can be deadly.
for about three months before going - preferably with
backpack; going up and down flights of stairs recommended.
crucial to drink coca tea to cope with high altitude;
some people find that chewing coca leaves while walking
guide's advice about pacing and breathing. Watch the way
the guide walks: slow, slight lean forward, rolling through
gradually - find your own pace; make sure you're not rushed.
lots of water - dehydration seems to worsen high altitude
in their 30s and in good shape (some of them runners)
were overextended; some had to be carried back to camp.
for Inca Trail trek well in advance - one month before,
if going in the fall; two months for spring and three
months for summer. Only 200 hikers per day are allowed.
are kind and patient.
on trek was excellent and plentiful. One hiker found she
felt better eating a hearty breakfast but very light meals
for the rest of the day.
humid in certain areas.
sure to check gear they're providing before starting trek
in case you're not satisfied with quality. Preferably
you should have a down sleeping bag. Also clarify what
the porter will or will not be carrying. One trekker didn't
like the tents - she felt she was sliding down hill all
and schedules may vary. In one of them you walk approximately
12 km on the first day; 2nd day is the hardest: six solid
uphill hours to Dead Woman's Pass; day three: 14-16 kms;
day 4: up at 3:30 a.m. for 1-1/2 hours' hike to watch
sunrise in Machu Picchu. As a general rule, take 40 steps
and rest to the count of 40.
you have a bad cold, don't attempt the trek. Serious respiratory
problems may occur due to high altitude.
Inca Trail hike from Cuzco - much cheaper. Caution - you
may not be able to do trek when you want to go due to
consumption may worsen effects of high altitude.
pack anything you'd regret losing: ultimate tent/sleeping
of the comments on the whole experience: "Brutal
but breathtaking." "Fantastic scenery."
"A physical challenge." "Arduous."
"An amazing experience."