Chocolate Lake and Rainbow Mountain: A 2-Day Adventure

Experience the tranquility of Chocolate Lake and the colors of Rainbow Mountain in a compact two-day exploration.

Home » 2-Day Chocolate Lake & Rainbow Mountain Adventure
Location

Cusco, Peru

Duration

2 Days

Difficulty

7/10

Availability

Year Round

Tour type

Adventure

Overview

Embark on a captivating two-day adventure that guides you through some of Peru’s most extraordinary landscapes. The Chocolate Lake and Rainbow Mountain tour is a journey of contrasts, from the serene, cocoa-hued waters of a hidden Andean gem to the vibrant striations of one of the world’s most unique geological formations. This tour is not just a hike; it’s a vibrant tapestry of natural wonders, cultural insights, and breathtaking vistas, carefully woven to create an unforgettable experience.

Explore landscapes that seem to defy reality, where each step unveils a new marvel. On the first day, the tranquil shores of Chocolate Lake await, a rare spectacle that’s as serene as it is picturesque. The journey then escalates to the awe-inspiring Rainbow Mountain, a natural palette of colors that illuminates at sunrise, offering a moment of pure wonder. As you traverse these contrasting landscapes, each view is a reminder of nature’s incredible artistry, ensuring that every moment of this two-day adventure is etched in your memory as a vivid and unique experience.

Departure & Return Location Your Hotel in Cusco
Departure Time 3:30 AM - 4:00 AM
Estimated Return Time 5:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Guide Languages Available Guides fluent in English and Spanish
Key Attractions Chocolate Lake, Rainbow Mountain, Red Valley, Ausangate Mountain, Andean wildlife, Stargazing opportunities
Price
FromUSD 370
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Select a package
  • Standard Large GroupGroup Size: 2 Min – 16ppl MaxStart Time: 03:30
  • Standard Small GroupGroup Size: 2 Min – 8ppl MaxStart Time: 03:30
  • Private GroupGroup Size: CustomizableStart Time: 03:30
  • Deluxe Private GroupGroup Size: CustomizableStart Time: 03:30
  • Solo TravelerGroup Size: 1 personStart Time: 03:30
  • Deluxe Solo TravelerGroup Size: 1 personStart Time: 03:30

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Tour Itinerary

Explore our expertly designed itinerary below, crafted to showcase breathtaking views and provide unique adventures every step of the way.

Your adventure kicks off with an early morning pickup from your Cusco hotel, whisking you away on a picturesque 3.5-hour drive to the serene village of Huchuy Phynaya. Here, a hearty breakfast prepared by our talented chef awaits, fueling you for the day's hike. As you set off on the trail, the initial uphill trek offers a delightful encounter with local wildlife, including herds of llamas and alpacas, set against the stunning backdrop of the Andean landscape.

The day's highlight is the awe-inspiring Chocolate Lake. This unique body of water, famous for its cocoa-colored hue, is a wonder to behold and a photographer's dream. Our guide will share intriguing insights about the lake's distinct color and the surrounding mountain's cultural significance.

After a session of exploration and photography, a downhill trek leads you back to the trailhead, where a delicious lunch awaits. The journey then continues to the Hanchipacha community, a short 40-minute drive. Here, we set up camp for a cozy night under the stars. Enjoy an evening tea followed by dinner, all while marveling at the magnificent Milky Way above.

Accommodation: Camping
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner
Hiking: Approx. 6 hours, 9 km

The second day starts with an early rise and a brief 30-minute drive to Rainbow Mountain, ensuring you're among the first to arrive at this breathtaking site. After a nutritious breakfast, the trek to Qayrahuiri begins, marking the start of your journey to Rainbow Mountain. The trail gently ascends for about an hour, leading to the vibrant and surreal landscapes of this famous mountain.

You'll have ample time to immerse yourself in the beauty of Rainbow Mountain, capturing stunning photographs in a tranquil setting. The journey extends for another 30 minutes to the Red Valley, an area renowned for its natural reddish hues due to the rich mineral content. This remarkable landscape has quickly become a must-see highlight in the Cusco region.

Wrapping up your visit to the Red Valley, hike back to Qayrahuiri where transportation awaits to take you to lunch. The adventure concludes with a relaxing 3.5-hour drive back to your hotel in Cusco, bringing an end to an unforgettable two-day exploration.

Accommodation: Return to Cusco
Meals: Breakfast and Lunch
Hiking: Approx. 6 hours, 5 km

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Tour Highlights

  • Chocolate Lake Visit: Discover the unique charm of Chocolate Lake, known for its distinctive cocoa-colored waters. This hidden gem offers a tranquil setting and spectacular photo opportunities, making it a highlight for nature enthusiasts and photographers alike.

  • Rainbow Mountain Sunrise: Experience the breathtaking sight of sunrise over Rainbow Mountain, where the early morning light reveals the mountain’s stunning array of colors. This moment of natural beauty provides a serene and unforgettable start to your second day.

  • Cultural Insights at Huchuy Phynaya: Immerse yourself in the local culture with a visit to the quaint community of Huchuy Phynaya. Here, witness the daily life and traditions of the Andean people, adding a rich cultural layer to your adventure.

  • Wildlife Encounters: Along the trail, encounter herds of llamas and alpacas in their natural habitat. These peaceful encounters offer a glimpse into the region’s diverse wildlife and the animals’ significance in Andean culture.

  • Exploration of Red Valley: Extend your Rainbow Mountain experience with a visit to the nearby Red Valley. This stunning area, characterized by its rich red hues, offers a contrasting landscape that complements the vibrant colors of Rainbow Mountain.

  • Scenic Andean Landscapes: Throughout the trek, enjoy panoramic views of the Andean mountains, with their diverse landscapes ranging from snow-capped peaks to lush valleys. Each viewpoint offers a new perspective on the breathtaking beauty of the Peruvian Andes.

  • Comfortable Camping Experience: After a day of exploration, relax at a comfortable campsite in the Hanchipacha community. This peaceful overnight stay under the stars provides a perfect opportunity to unwind and reflect on the day’s adventures.

  • Authentic Culinary Experiences: Savor the flavors of traditional Peruvian cuisine with meals prepared by our skilled cook, offering a taste of the local gastronomy amidst the scenic backdrop of the Andes.

Prices

Discover our diverse tour offerings, catering to various interests and providing unforgettable experiences for every traveler.
Payment Terms

Payment Terms & Cancellation Policy

Kindly take a moment to read our Payment Terms & Cancellation Policy before booking. Happy adventuring!

Payment Terms

Beginning Your Adventure - Booking Confirmation and Deposit

Your journey starts with a commitment: a 30% deposit of the total tour cost. This initial investment is pivotal in activating the extensive preparatory process, ensuring every aspect of your tour is curated to perfection.

Final Payment: The Last Step Before Your Journey Begins

The remaining 70% of the tour cost is due no later than 48 hours before the commencement of your tour. This timely payment is critical to finalize all logistical arrangements, guaranteeing a hassle-free start to your adventure.

Expansive Payment Options for Ease and Flexibility

In line with our commitment to your convenience, Peru Tripper accepts a variety of payment methods, including bank transfers, credit cards, and PayPal. Please be aware that additional fees may apply depending on the payment method selected. Detailed payment procedures and potential fees can be found on our dedicated payment page.

Implications of Late Payments - Protecting Your Reservation

Adherence to the payment schedule is crucial. Late payments can unfortunately lead to the cancellation of your reservation, with the deposit being retained as a non-refundable fee. We urge you to maintain timely payments to safeguard your tour plans.

Policy for Last-Minute Adventurers

For those inspired to join this tour on short notice, namely less than 15 days before departure, full payment is required at the time of booking. This ensures that we can expedite all necessary preparations for your inclusion.

Cancellation Policy

Flexible Cancellation Options for Clients

We understand that circumstances can change, sometimes unexpectedly. If you find the need to cancel your booking, you have the flexibility to do so up to 30 days before the tour start date. In this case, you will receive a full refund minus a 10% administration fee, acknowledging the efforts and resources already invested in planning your tour. Any additional balance paid will also be refunded, ensuring a fair and transparent process.

Understanding Cancellations Within 30 Days

We wish to draw your attention to our policy for cancellations made within 30 days of the tour departure. Given the advanced stage of preparations and commitments made at this juncture, we are unable to offer refunds. This policy is in place to balance the significant logistical arrangements and reservations made on your behalf.

Navigating Through Force Majeure

In the event of extraordinary and uncontrollable circumstances, such as natural disasters or significant political unrest, Peru Tripper adopts a flexible approach. We prioritize your safety and satisfaction, offering to reschedule your trip or provide a credit for future travel, subject to availability.

Strong Advocacy for Comprehensive Travel Insurance

We cannot overstate the importance of securing comprehensive travel insurance. Such insurance plays a critical role in safeguarding your investment against unforeseen cancellations, emergencies, and other unexpected scenarios. It is a proactive measure to ensure peace of mind throughout your journey. Peru Tripper is not responsible for any expenses arising from incidents not covered by your insurance policy.

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Discounts

Special Discounts

 

  • Adult (12+ Years): Standard rates apply for travelers over 12 years old.
  • Child (3 – 11 Years): Save USD 20 for children between 3 and 11 years old.
  • Infant (0 – 2 Years): Infants younger than 2 years old are free (must ride on the adult’s lap; for a separate seat, add them as a child).
  • Group Discount: Automatically applied during online booking.
    • Save USD 10/person for groups of 5-7 people.
    • Save USD 15/person for groups of 8-10 people.
    • Save USD 20/person for groups of 11+ people.

Please note that the applicable age is considered at the time of completion of the trip.

View age and group-based discount details.

Inclusions & Exclusions

Dive into our in-depth guide on what’s included and not included for all package options on the 2-Day Chocolate Lake & Rainbow Mountain Adventure. With these carefully put-together lists, you’ll know exactly what to anticipate when booking the journey of a lifetime.

Standard Inclusions

Our Standard package offers a range of amenities and services for a comfortable and enjoyable trip experience. All package options include the following:

Not Included

The following items are not included in our trek packages. Please consider these additional costs when preparing for your trek. Note that some exclusions may be included in the Deluxe package, as mentioned in the Additional Inclusions section:

Additional Inclusions (Deluxe Package)

Upgrade to our Deluxe package for an enhanced and luxurious trekking experience. The Deluxe package includes these premium amenities and services, which can also be added individually to the Standard package:

What to Pack

When embarking on the 2-Day Chocolate Lake & Rainbow Mountain Adventure, it’s crucial to pack the right items for a successful and enjoyable experience.

Packing List

Packing Tips

To ensure a comfortable and successful trek to Chocolate Lake and Rainbow Mountain, it’s important to pack smart. Here are some essential tips to guide you:

  • Duffel Bag Collection: You will receive the duffel bag during the briefing session with the guide, one day before the tour starts. Use this bag to pack items that you won’t require during the trek.

  • Daypack Essentials: Keep only the essentials in your daypack for the trek, ensuring easy access to items like water, snacks, and sunscreen.

  • Layering is Key: With varying mountain temperatures, dressing in layers allows for easy adjustments based on the conditions.

  • Eco-friendly Choices: Opt for biodegradable toiletries to show respect for the environment.

  • Footwear Comfort: If you have new hiking boots, break them in before the trek to ensure maximum comfort and to prevent blisters.

  • Secure Valuables: Use a money belt or hidden pouch for vital items. Also, consider creating digital backups of essential documents.

  • Personal Comfort: Within the duffel bag’s weight limit, include personal items that will make your homestay experience more enjoyable.

Frequently Asked Questions

Got questions? We’ve got answers! Dive into our FAQ section for detailed responses to common queries. If you don’t find what you’re looking for, our team is just a click away to assist you.

What fitness level is required for the 2-Day Chocolate Lake & Rainbow Mountain Adventure?

This trek is considered moderate to challenging, so a good level of fitness is recommended. The hike involves uphill walking at high altitude, so prior acclimatization is advisable.

Do I need to bring my own trekking poles and sleeping bag?

Trekking poles and sleeping bags are not included in the standard package but are available for rent. They are included in the Deluxe package.

Is there a pre-departure briefing before the trek?

Yes, there will be a pre-departure briefing at your hotel or office 1 or 2 days before the trek to go over the itinerary and answer any last-minute questions.

What kind of weather should I expect during the trek?

The weather in the Andes can be unpredictable. Expect cooler temperatures, especially at higher altitudes, and prepare for the possibility of rain. Layered clothing is recommended.

How safe is the trek, and what safety measures are in place?

Safety is our top priority. The trek is led by experienced guides, and we provide a first aid kit and emergency oxygen. Our team is trained to handle high-altitude sickness and other medical emergencies.

Is travel insurance required for this trek?

While not mandatory, we strongly recommend purchasing comprehensive travel insurance that covers high-altitude trekking, medical emergencies, trip cancellations, and baggage loss.

How much should I tip the guides and support staff?

Tips for tour guides, chefs, and support staff are not included and are at your discretion. While tipping is customary, it is not mandatory and should be based on the quality of service received.

What is the maximum altitude we will reach, and is altitude sickness a concern?

The maximum altitude reached will be 5,038 meters (16,528 feet). Altitude sickness can be a concern, so it’s important to acclimatize before the trek and stay hydrated. An emergency oxygen bottle and medical kit are available for safety.

Can I book this trek last minute?

Booking in advance is highly recommended due to limited availability, especially during peak trekking seasons. However, last-minute bookings may be possible based on availability.

Can I store my luggage somewhere during the trek?

Yes, you can store your non-essential luggage at your hotel in Cusco or with us. Only bring necessary items on the trek.

What is the best time of year to do this trek?

The best time for this trek is during the dry season, from April to October, when the weather is generally clearer and there’s less chance of rain.

How environmentally friendly is the trek?

We are committed to eco-friendly trekking practices. This includes using biodegradable products, minimizing waste, and ensuring that our treks do not harm the local environment.

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  • Overview
  • Tour Itinerary
  • Prices
  • Inclusions & Exclusions
  • What to Pack
  • Frequently Asked Questions

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