In late 2015 Customer Support Manager Becky Powney trekked the Inca Trail. After trekking in the Himalayas, how did it match up?
"This was my first visit to South America. I have never really included South America or Peru on my bucket list - I have always chosen to travel around Asia - so this was a really exciting opportunity to visit a new country with new cultures and of course complete one of the most amazing treks – The Inca Trail.
Upon arrival in Lima I was met by a friendly rep from our local agency who briefed me on Peruvian ways and do’s and don’ts. It was reassuring to be greeted by a happy, smiling face after a long, tiresome flight. The hotel in Lima was in a perfect location with friendly staff and just what was needed to relax and enjoy my first day in Peru. After a good night’s rest myself and my group were ready to fly to Puno to meet our Explore Leader and begin our adventure.
Having previously trekked in Nepal, altitude was something I was certainly mindful about, so I was ready to do everything a million times slower than normal; for those that know me, this is a near on impossible task…
The acclimatisation days in Puno were perfect to get us ready for the trek. With Coca tea and oxygen available at breakfast times, we were all set for exploring Lake Titicaca, a 'must-see' exciting and interesting optional excursion. We were really lucky to be in Puno when a local carnival was taking place, so we were fully immersed in the street dancing, singing and performances. There was a real buzz and the event added a real WOW factor to the trip.
I have trekked in Nepal many times, so I had certain expectations about what to expect on the trek and at camp; I wasn’t disappointed. The food was fantastic throughout the trip and the food on the trek was superb; we couldn’t have asked for more. The Explore Leader was considerate and encouraging throughout the trip and we were all able to walk the trail at our own pace, allowing plenty of time for photo opportunities and rest stops. The camera was in and out of our bags every 5 minutes; with the changes in weather there was always a new picture to be taken.
The whole trip was superb from start to finish with a nice mix of culture, discovery, and walking. However, walking the Inca trail was the icing on the cake. We were lucky enough that we didn’t share the trail with any other walkers until the final trek day to the Sun Gate. This made it all the more personal and special. Arriving at the Sun Gate was magical and quite emotional; after four days of walking and camping we had finally made it. The gods were looking down on us; as we arrived at the Sun Gate two beautiful rainbows appeared; we could not have timed it any better.
Then there it was – Machu Picchu – WOW what a beautiful sight. We couldn’t quite believe we were there just looking down on this amazing and iconic site; it was worth every step (and there were lots)."
Becky travelled on Heights of Machu Picchu