I had an amazing time. It really felt like we were part of the community and everyone was extremely friendly and welcoming. They all love life and the enthusiasm is infectious. I’d love to go back.
Rosie McDavid, 18, a student from Peebles volunteering in Peru
Our 2017 Machu Picchu Charity Challenge which operates from June 24th through to 30th June 2017 - email email@example.com for more info!
You will arrive in Cusco and be met at the airport by your overseas crew leader and transferred to your accommodation for the next couple of nights. The first day you will most likely be pretty tired after a long flight and with the altitude you will definitely want to take it easy. You can relax and in the evening with your group for a welcome meal/drink out - try the Pisco Sour!
Today you can spend the day discovering all the artisan markets, beautiful colonial churches and historic monuments and museums of Cusco. If you’re feeling energetic you could even walk the steep and winding walk up to the Inca ruins of Saqsaywaman on the hill above Cusco to take in some amazing views. In the evening why not try the local delicacy of guinea pig in one of Cusco’s many restaurants? In the evening you will meet up for a briefing about the next couple of days trekking and you'll need an early bed as the next morning is an early start!
You will be picked up from the hostel at approx 4:30am and transferred to Mollepata where we stop for breakfast (not included) and then it’s time for a full day of hiking (21,5 km) mostly uphill. During the morning we get spoiled with beautiful views of the valley and by lunch, with a little luck, we will already see the snow peaks. After lunch we continue for another 3 to 4 hrs while the scenery is changing into rougher hills with rushing streams cascading between them. By the time we reach the campsite we are at an altitude of a little over 4000 meters and have already hiked 21,3 km. Needless to say, most of you will be snoring in your tents shortly after a good meal prepared by the cook and served by your guide.
This is the day! Wake up call and “room service” delivered by your guide - a coca tea served at the door of your tent - to start this long day of trekking. After breakfast with the help of the weather gods you’ll see the massive Mount Salkantay smiling down at you (or laughing depending the way you look at it). Step by step we’ll climb higher until reaching Soyroccocha where we take a short rest and try to catch our breath. We keep on smiling and climbing higher and higher with the views getting more and more spectacular as the Salkantay mountain approaches.
Waking up in the pre-jungle is something special; usually in the early morning the clouds hang low over the valley and the trees, creating a mysterious scene. Soon after breakfast you will find yourself crossing rivers, balancing over bridges and enjoying the warmer climate. When we reach the “supermercado” we know we are close to the river where transport will be waiting for us to bring us to the village of Santa Teresa. We’ll pitch the tents here and enjoy another night of camping in the warm climate.
You will wake up and have breakfast at around 7am. After breakfast you will walk to Colpani taking in the views until you reach the restaurant where you will have lunch at the Hidroelectrica station. From here it is only about two and a half hours further waking along the train tracks to Aguas Calientes, the base town for Machu Picchu. Dinner is included at a local restaurant before heading back to relax (in a real bed!) in your hostel with hot showers and private bathrooms.
In the morning you will start your 1 hour ascent to Machu Picchu to arrive in time for sunrise, or at the time you desire (bus is optional, $8 each way, first bus departs at 5:30am). If you have purchased a pass for Huayna Picchu in advance you will have the opportunity to climb the mountain (climbing time will be determined in advance depending on availability). There will be a two hour guided tour of Machu Picchu following and then you will have the rest of the afternoon to explore Machu Picchu and visit the hot springs. You need to return to Aguas Calientes at least 30 mins prior to your train departure (return trains schedule subject to daily change). There will be a transport waiting for you in Ollantaytambo to bring you back to Cusco (end of MAD Challenge).
If you and your team would also like to join a Project before your Trek then you can volunteer on one of our Madventurer Projects from one day (for a game of footy!) up to 2 weeks. If you wish to pass by for a day to just familiarize yourself with the good work that your Peru fundraising challenge would have contributed to then there would be no additional cost. Just email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
More information on the Projects across the globe that you will be supporting can be <found here>