Abra Malaga – Mountain Bike Adventure
Enjoy a half-day mountain bike tour on Abra Malaga in the Sacred Valley of Peru. This trip is a stunner. During the 5,000 feet of all-downhill biking, you will likely see herds of llamas, the massive glacier of Veronica, waterfalls, and authentic Andean lifestyles of simple stone huts and potato farms. This is the continental divide of South America, since, from here going eastward it drops nearly 20,000 feet down to the Amazon jungle basin, and the views here are outstanding. This section of highway has been described by many as one of the most beautiful in South America. By far one of the most popular mountain bike trips in the area, and with very good reason – it is over 5,000 feet of pure descent on a beautifully paved road.
Your tour starts in Ollantaytambo from where you’ll drive one hour up the road to the pass of Abra Malaga, which lies at nearly 14,500 above sea level and at the foot of the massive glacier of Veronica (17,500 feet). From there, you begin a 50 kilometer descent that is one of the longest possible in the world, through gorgeous terrain. This ride is all downhill on a smooth paved road, and is truly suitable for anyone who can ride a bicycle. We have done this trip for nearly ten years and have successfully completed it hundreds of times.This ride fun. Everyone who does it loves it, due to the culture and scenery. It is a great mountain bike ride, perfect for those who love mountain biking. For those with extensive off road experience, there is a international DH course just meters away from the main road (extra cost and logistics are involved, ask for details).
The Lares Trek is an off-the-beaten trail that begins near the town of Lares, 40 miles north of Cusco and 35 miles south east of Machu Picchu (see map below). The trek itself lies in the Lares Valley, east of the Urubamba mountain range, which traverses part of the Sacred Valley.
The trek can be completed as a standalone 2 or 3 day trail, or be incorporated with a visit to Machu Picchu – extending the tour by 1 or 2 days. The latter option is fast becoming a popular itinerary for trekkers due to the limits of the Classic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu.
Permits are not required for the Lares Trek. This means that you will arrive in Cusco and depending on the season (not June-August).
Of course you will need to book your train tickets to Aguas Calientes as early as possible during peak season, as well as your entrance tickets to Machu Picchu.
In terms of the current route itinerary, there are in fact a number of variations on the Lares Trek, most end at Ollantaytambo.
From here trekkers can catch a train to Aguas Calientes to visit Machu Picchu or indeed return to Cusco. We discuss each Lares Trek route variation in some detail below.
There are a number of factors that make this trek to great alternative to the Classic Inca Trail.
Firstly, and perhaps most importantly for some, that is a lot quieter than than Inca Trail.
Secondly, the route is arguably easier than the Inca Trail in that one does not need to deal with as many steps.
Altitude is still an issue and on some route you will need to deal with 3 high altitude passes that are over 4,200 meters (the highest, depending on your route is either 4,400 meters or 4,600 meters).