An exciting two day exploration of the Lares Region!
One of our first running routes and still one of our favorites! We have finally gotten around to making this a 2 day Trekking/ Running Holiday!
Difficulty Level - Medium
Distances - Day 1 - 16km, Day 2 - 12km
Altitude 3500 - 4400 - 3500 metres
Scenery - Breathtaking
Worth it - 100%
First, I (Dan) will give you a little background on this route! I visited Lares when I first arrived in Cusco and fell in love with the hot springs. They are located in the quiet town of Lares and are the perfect location to relax in the hot water.
After my first trip there, I got on google maps and started to try and find possible routes where I could run and finish at the hot springs. I mapped out a few routes and through trial and error I was able to eventually find the route that we use today.
Why is this route so special?
Now, if you did a google search you will see lots of results for trekking in Lares. I will tell you why our route is the best! It's simple really.
The Lares trek, has three different routes, one starts at the hot springs, one finishes at the hot springs and one doesn't even go to the hot springs. We have literally taken the best parts of each trek, added some Peru Fitness Holidays spice and gotten as a result the ultimate route. Mountain top lakes, lots of Llamas and breathtaking scenery!
Day one, starts bright and early in Cusco or the Sacred Valley (depending where you are based), ourselves along with our trusted driver Jose Luis, will pick you up. We will travel through the Sacred Valley, passing through Calca, where we will get the chance to stop off and visit the local market before we arrive at the start of our Lares trek/run.
We start with a steady climb taking us out of the small community before we eventually arrive at one mountain top lake, where we can take a breath or two before the final push to the pass, (4,300 metres). If we are lucky with the weather we will get to see one of my favorite views (possibly ever!).
From here it is nice running/trekking down past mountain top lakes, communities and farm animals until we eventually will reach a small community, were we will pass community members in their traditional bright clothes. A nice downhill section takes us down to the Hot Springs where our lunch will be waiting for us. You will get to enjoy the rest of the afternoon relaxing and soothing the tired legs in the hot springs.
Depending on the accommodation, depends if we will spend the night in the Hot Springs or we will travel up to the start of Day 2, Huacahuasi.
An incredibly scenic day starts with a short ride up to the small community of Huacahuasi. From here we will start our trek/run taking us through beautiful Peruvian countryside and breathtaking views. Like the previous day, the first half is a slow climb up to the pass. This day could easily be called the Llama trek due to the number of Llamas and Alpacas grazing all along the trail.
We will eventually make the pass before a fun descent into the community of Patacancha.
We will stop for lunch along the way before traveling down to Ollantaytambo or Cusco (depending on your onward travel plans).
In truth we are not a fan of camping, you never sleep well, usually have a stone digging into your back at night and it is a squeeze in a 2 man tent. As a result, we try where we can to always be able to provide alternative accommodation to camping. For the Lares route we have a couple of options to match both your preferences and budget.
Basic in Lares
For us, this is our recommended and favorite option. Spending the night in the Hot Springs. There are options for shared and private bathrooms. This is very basic accommodation and we do suggest bringing sleeping bag liners and insect repellent. But having the option to stay by the pools for us is worth the basic accommodation.
There is very limited space (only 5 rooms), so sometimes it isn't possible to get a room in the hot springs themselves, in which case we will spend the night in the hotel in the town itself. A 4 minute car ride. Nicer than the hot springs and the best option in the whole of Lares (though remember that Lares is a provincial market town that has only three hostels!)
Mountain Lodges of Peru
For those that want something higher end. Then we have linked up with the Mountain Lodges of Peru and have access to their beautiful lodge in the small community of Huacahuasi, a thirty minute drive from Lares and the start of the trek/run on day two. Once you have bathed long enough in the hot water, we would take the drive up to the community and spend the night there. Ready for the next days trail.
Why you should choose Peru Fitness Holidays
Peru Fitness Holidays unique two day trek/ run exploring the Lares district is the perfect opportunity for all those that are limited with time, would like to get away from the tourist trail (and thousands of tourists) and get to have a unique and incredible experience. We are proud that most of our treks you are unlikely to see other tourists and just local farmers and shepherds (plus of course plenty of Llamas).
Our goal is to share with you the magic and breathtaking side of Peru that few get to see. Furthermore, all our holidays and treks are personalized (or a maximum of 6 people on our group holidays). This means that you will get a truly personal and unique experience.
|Number of people
|Price USD per person*
*Accommodation at the Hot Springs.