Rainbow mountain

The “Rainbow Mountain”, officially named Vinicunca, is a stunning destination for many visitors, situated near the incredible Ausangate Mountain

Apu Ausangate is the holiest mountain in the region and the highest mountain in the Cusco area (6,385 m / 20,945 ft).
Since pre-Inca times the mountain has been a place of pilgrimage, worshiping and offerings to this sacred place, the tradition continues today, with the yearly Qoyllur Rit’i celebration.

We now have this 2 day, 1 night journey that allows you to reach Vinicunca in 1 ½ days. The hike itself is amazing, you can see beautiful landscape, herds of llamas and alpacas, many native communities, potato fields and consistent views of Apu Ausangate glacier and Surine Mountain.

One day Itinerary

Cusco - Quesiuno

Early in the morning after breakfast we will pick you up from your hotel and drive through the South Valley to the trailhead at to Quesiuno Town for approximately 3 hours drive.

Upon arrival we will walk for 10 minutes to the check point.
We will hike for about 3 hours or less, once we arrive to the summit we will see the rainbow colorful mountain, and spend some time to rest and admire the beautiful scenery and other snow mountains.
Lowest Elevation: 4,326 m / 14,189 ft
Highest Elevation: 5,020 m / 16,466 ft
Thereafter we will walk down, have a box lunch, and then return to Cusco.

Two days/One night Itinerary

Day 1: Cusco – Quesiuno – Llamachimpana

After breakfast we will pick you up from your hotel and drive through the South Valley to the trailhead at Ccayrabiri (4,326 m / 14,189 ft) for 3 hours.
Upon arrival we will load all the gear on the horses and begin our hike uphill to the Apu Apacheta (4,800 m / 15,696 f.) for approximately 3 hours, on the way you will start seeing herds of alpacas and llamas. We will have consistent views of the Ausangate Mountain. We will hike through villages and interact with the local residents. We have the opportunity to see chinchillas and vicuñas which are non-domesticated camelids.
Once we pass the Apu Apacheta , here we will have an Inca/Andean Ceremony with a Pacc’o Andean Priest (Shaman) from Quero Community.

About our Pacco’os of Quero Community:

First of all a Pacc’o is a sort of witchdoctor, Medicine/Man, Healer, and Andean Priest that has a very deep knowledge and understanding of the essence of what really is the Andean or Inca religion; its origins, characteristics, customs, beliefs, convictions and ideological practices.
The Quero community has conserved and preserved all those ancient teachings and knowledge of the Quechuas or Inka society, it is said that are the direct descendants of the Inkas.
Their community is located in the Province of Paucartambo – Cusco, and it can take 2 days to get to Cusco city, it’s like 1 ½ days walking and then bus.

Pachamama Ceremony

* You will participate on an important ancient religious ritual and ceremony of offering to Mother Earth – Pachamama, known by the Inca or Quechua people as Ayni, the Universal law of Reciprocity, also to honor the sacred mountain - Apu Ausangate.

Thereafter we will have a nice lunch with a wonderful view of the Ausangate Mountain. After lunch we will start going downhill and arrive at the canyon Camp site around 4.00 pm where we will spend the night. Dinner at campsite.

Highlights of the First Day

  • Andean Ceremony to Pachamama/Mother Earth and the Apus.
  • Meals: Lunch/Dinner
  • Lowest Elevation: 4,326 m / 14,189 ft
  • Highest Elevation: 4,800 m / 15,696 ft
  • Approximate walking time: 5 to 6 hours
  • Level of Difficulty: Challenging

Day 2: Camp Site – Vinicunca – Ccayrabiri – Cusco

We wake up early in the morning, and have breakfast to start the day. Our destination today is the Rainbow Mountain. This is a 3 1/2 hour hike to the summit.

On the way up, we will have consistent views of stunning red mountains, the Ausangate glacier and Surine Mountain.

Finally, we reach our destination, what we came to see... the Rainbow Mountains (5,020 m / 16,466 ft), we will have time to explore the area and take pictures. We will spend approximately 30 minutes at the top.

At this point, it is time to go back down. The hike will take 2 hours, and have lunch at the bottom.

Thereafter we will return to Cusco, arriving around 7.00 pm.

Highlights of the second day 

  • Meals: Breakfast/Lunch
  • Lowest Elevation: 4,326 m / 14,189 ft
  • Highest Elevation: 5,020 m / 16,466 ft
  • Approximate walking time: 4 to 5 hours down
  • Level of Difficulty: Difficult

Services Included:

  • English speaking tour guide.
  • Pick up from your hotel and private transportation to trailhead at Ccayrabiri and return.
  • 01 Andean Ceremony to Pachamama/Mother Earth and the Apus.
  • Double tent
  • Air Mattress
  • Kitchen tent
  • Dining tent with tables and chairs
  • Toilet tent and portable toilet
  • Cook
  • Wranglers and horses to carry all the equipment (food, tents, chairs, table, etc)
  • Horse to transport 8 kg of your personal gear
  • One breakfast, two lunches and one dinner
  • First kit aid
  • Oxygen

Services Not Included:

  • Sleeping bag – you can rent one from us
  • Trekking poles – you can rent them from us
  • Tips for the crew (guide, cook, wranglers)
  • Insurance