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Inca Trail

Many people believe the Inca trail have only few kilometers from Cuzco city to the Machu Picchu ruins. The true is that this road network has over 23,000 kilometers of built paths. The Incas build the roads on a strict harmony with the nature around, splendid design and applying marvelous Inca Architecture skills for its construction.

The stone paths in the plain areas could be from 6 to 8 meters wide. As the Inca trail goes higher in the highland, the path get smaller, up to one meter wide. The trails cross mountains and dangerous cliffs. To build the roads they use flat rectangle stone blocks placed next to each other to create the road. If the Incas need to build a bridge, they use wood, rope and other strong materials.

The European way of straight and flat roads, did not apply to the Incas needs. Because the Incas did not know the wheel and they did not have horses. But they have the llamas as pack animal and the llamas are great climbing animals. So their solution was to build roads with stairs in straight lines, throughout mountains and valleys. The solution, the Incas offer reduces 25% of the road but increase its difficulty.
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    • inca trail roads map
      The Incas road network has twenty three thousand kilometers of build paths.
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    • inca trail mountain
      The roads go along mountains and valleys, always with the nature, never against it.
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    • inca trail steps
      To walk these roads you will need good health and much will.

The Inca trail was rarely use by regular Inca people. The main purpose of the roads was to move large communities of people thought out the kingdom. If they need to repopulate certain areas the trail was use. But ones the Incas set a community in one place, they did not move any more. The secondary purpose of the roads was for transfers of authorities, the royal families, communications and movement of armies around the kingdom.

The Inca trail communications network was simple and efficient. Along the road they place pit stops call Tambos with food, water and place to sleep. The Tambos were use by messengers call Chasquis. The Chasquis were excellent athletes, because they must run back and forward from Tambo to Tambo with messages. Ones the Chasqui gets closer to the next Tambo, he play a Pututu, which is a trumpet made of a conch shell. In the mind time the Chasqui get ready, receive the message and start to run to the next Tambo to deliver the message. The action repeats until the message arrives to destiny.

The distances from Tambo to Tambo were nearly 200 Km. The strength, speed and determination of this men was remarkable. There are tells that say the Chasquis using the Inca trail were capable to bring fresh fish from the coast to the Inca king, in only two days. The Romans using horses were lucky if their messengers travel 160 Km in one day. The Chasquis on foot were capable to run throughout mountains twice faster than the Romans.

Everybody knows about the Inca trail that takes you from Cusco to Machu Picchu. The existence of the road was a secret for regular Inca people. We think it was design for religious and ceremony purposes. Along this beautiful road you find holy points of stop, where you must pray to the mountains and nature. Walking this road will offer you incredible views of the mountains and a collection of wildlife that you have never seen before.

The trekking adventure to Machu Picchu ruins is not as easy as it sounds. It is 42 kilometers walk, with the most diverse temperatures; you will go up to 4200 meters over the sea level. Then cold and worm valleys with impressive views of the mountains; walk this lands with your backpack could be difficult. But not for the locals, they walk almost bare food with heavy backpacks. It is impressive that sometimes; they are running passing you by like bullets.

For the Inca trail adventure, we recommend you to prepare yourself. If you smoke we recommend you to make some cardiovascular exercise in a gym. If you don't practice any regular exercise, then make some cardio in a gym. For your own good; train a little bit running or fast walking to increase the cardiovascular resistance of your body. Besides the physical preparation we recommend you to prepare your mind to the fact, that you and your tour guides will be alone in the middle of the highlands.
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    • inca trail trekking
      The Inca people walk these roads in regular basis, so you can imagine their great strength and health.
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    • salkantay inca trail
      Salkantay road is a different version of the Inca trail, different way but same destiny.
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    • inca trail view
      The entire Inca army was assembling in less than two weeks using these roads.

During your Inca trail adventure it is important to take care of yourself with wise decisions. It is important that you walk these roads carefully, because these roads were not design for people like us. They were design for physically advance people. Think about this, the Inca People walk all their life, run, eat healthy and live in the highlands. Adding the fact; that they were use to a low amount of oxygen in the air. Plus many other points that make them physically superior to us. So please be careful, for people like us, it is a challenge.

We recommend you to take serious the Inca trail trekking adventure. Because this adventure will be real; you will confront moderate climate conditions. Now, for normal people like us, this moderate could become heavy. It's critical to watch your steps and listen to your guide always. All the guides are locals and they will recognize if you are receptive to enjoy the spiritual experience or if you just went to walk; it's your choice.

If you are planning this adventure give yourself at list three months or more for booking. It is because the Peruvian government has put a maximum of 500 people using the Inca trail per day, including guides, cooks and porters. Making the math, it let you a small window of only 300 tourists per day. To resume, please follow our advice; prepare your body, concentrate and book early.
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