HJDS Travel Group

Warning – beware of the fake Inca Trail

by on Jan.19, 2013, under Travel

  • Sumo

You want to read about a ‘fake’ Inca Trail?

I’m here to tell you that there is a fake Inca Trail!! And every day hikers will do it unaware that’s it’s not the real deal. I’ll tell you how to make sure you book the real Inca Trail, which is what you want to do. The real Inca Trail is 4 days trekking and then on the last morning a short descent down into Machu Picchu, the amazing Lost Inca City and the highlight of your 4 amazing days of hiking! Firstly – if you are going to South America, do the Inca Trail! It is incredible. Secondly – ensure you do the Real Proper Inca Trail! I could be exposing a travel scam here, but I really want to highlight this point to all future Inca Trail enthusiasts.

You will see (and probably be photographed with) a massive sign that says Inca Trail at the start of the trail.

So how do you know if the Inca Trail you went on was a ‘fake’?? (and how do you know you have done the real Inca Trail?)

1. You didn’t have to show your passport on the entrance to the trail (at the start of the Real Inca Trail there is a compulsory passport check – you also have the option of getting a passport stamp, which I took)

The start of the Real Inca Trail means you need to show your passport and register at a checkpoint.

2. You missed the sign saying Inca Trail at the official entrance.

3. You paid less than $150 US Dollars (the real Inca Trail simply cannot be done for less than that) – the real Inca Trail will cost you more than $150 US Dollars (depending on porters, quality of tents, size of group, time of year etc.)

4. Your ticket didn’t have a shiny silver hologram on it.

5. You didn’t spend your 3rd night in Winay Wayna (a mountainous area with a huge campsite conveniently located just 6 kilometres from Machu Picchu – if you’re doing the Real Inca Trail you’ll stay here – or at least pass through it and spend a night nearby)

The visitor centre at Winaywayna is located beside the campsite where you will most likely spend your third night.

6. You used a bicycle on any part of the trail (the real Inca Trail doesn’t permit bicycles).

7. If you took a bus to Machu Picchu (seriously, I met people who went on a bus to Machu Picchu!! Now come on but if you get a bus then you know it’s can’t be the real Inca Trail)

8. On the night before visiting Machu Picchu you don’t even stay in a tent (on the Inca Trail the only accomodation is camping in tents – if you stayed in a hotel or hostel, you weren’t on the trail)

9. The night before visiting Machu Picchu you were staying night in a town called Aguas Calientes (if this happens to you, I feel a bit sorry and upset for you, as you probably didn’t do any part of the real Inca Trail – you possibly done the Salkantay Hike instead. Yes you will love it – but it’s probably that you were given false information).

10. You arrived in Machu Picchu by climbing to the top of a hill (NB – When you arrive at Machu Picchu on the 4th day of the Inca Trail it will be a downward descent and you will get your first sighting of Machu Picchu on the way down in a place called Intipunku or Intipata.)

11. You finished the trip in 3 days (unless it’s under special circumstances as the real hike from Qorihuayrachina to Machu Picchu will be four days – yes I know experienced hikers will do it faster, but this is the actual set route and timescale)

12. The actual walk you do is actually known as the Salkantay Trek or the Machu Picchu Trek (these are actually also great hikes by the way, but they are NOT the Real Inca Trail).

13. You organised it the day before (There are only four hundred spaces on the Real Inca Trail each day and it usually fills up fast so booking the day before is unlikely and sounds suspicious to me).

In closing and not meaning to put a dampener on it, if any of you do another hike, that is also amazing. I’m just trying to let people know that if you want to do the proper real Inca Trail, it will be a four day hike through the hills and valleys of Peru which will end triumphantly at Machu Picchu. There are no settlements, no hotels and no transport at all during the four day hike.

You will love the Inca Trail – head to Peru and get it done! But don’t fall for the fake one!!

Don’t Stop Living!!

To find out more about the fake Inca Trail and other travel myths, stories and tips head to Jonny Blair’s resourceful work, travel and lifestyle site Dont Stop Living.. Check here for free reprint license: Warning – beware of the fake Inca Trail.

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    My name is Harry Delgado and I am a full time Internet and Small Business developer and marketer. Over 30 years in the Computer systems development, programming, hardware installations and support. Currently making a living from blogs like HJDS Computer Services , HJDS Investment Group and HJDS BlogBiz. You can connect with me via social media sites at Facebook - LinkedIn - Twitter - YouTube.

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