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Rainbow Mountain Peru Vinicunca Yauricunca – 6 days/5 nights

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March 19, 2018

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6 days/5 nights
Availability : " - "
Min Age : 12+
Max People : 14
Tour Details

Duration: 6 days/5 nights
Rainbow Mountain Elevation: Approximately 5,023 m/16,478 ft
Departure Dates: Any day you would like!
Please see our group departure calendar for Rainbow Mountain Vinicunca group tour dates.
Ausangate Rainbow Mountain Vinicunca Trek Pricing: From $589 USD per person, for groups of 4 or more trekkers. Please contact us for pricing for smaller group treks.
We also offer a shorter 4D/3N Rainbow Mountain Ausangate trek and a 2D/1N trek to the Rainbow Mountain only.


Before 2015, the breathtaking Rainbow Mountains of Peru, also known as Vinicunca, were relatively unknown among tourists. However, due to its unique segmented stripes of bright colors, the mountain has recently gained increasing popularity and has become one of Peru’s must-see destinations. Only three hours from Cusco but still relatively unmarred by travelers, Rainbow Mountain is truly a unique sight to behold: colorful washes of yellow, blue, and maroon cascade down the sides of the mountain like waterfalls, while the vibrant sky and soft white clouds graze the peaks.


For years, Rainbow Mountain’s electrifying colors were hidden beneath a layer of ice. However, as temperatures in the region began to rise, the ice started to give way to reveal the colorful stripes below, formed by mineral deposits layered over millions of years. Now, tourists can visit Rainbow Mountain on a unique adaptation of the Ausangate trek that allows them to trek part of the gorgeous Ausangate circuit through incredible landscapes like icy glaciers, skyscraping peaks, and turquoise lakes, while detouring to visit Rainbow Mountain. In either a 6 day/5 night trek or a 4 day/3 night trek, you can experience both the majestic Ausangate Peru circuit and Rainbow Mountain all in one trip. This remote, rugged trek is the perfect opportunity to disconnect and enjoy a few days absorbing the beauty that Peru has to offer.


The trek will begin in Cusco with transport to Tinqi, the main departure point. As you begin trekking, small farms and lush fields full of grazing alpacas and llamas, all staring curiously at you, will soon surround you. From here, you will begin to approach Ausangate, a sacred mountain that provides water to the villages below, and as the air gets colder and thinner the fields will be replaced by breathtaking glaciers. Incas once used the trails surrounding Ausangate as a pilgrimage route traveled to give offerings to the mountain in hope of good fortune, and the mystical energy is still palpable. 


On day two or three (depending on the length of your trek), you will begin crossing valleys and hills to arrive at Rainbow Mountain midday. Ascending the peak can be a bit of a challenge, especially at an altitude of 16,000 feet, and a combination of the thin air and the awe-inspiring view just might take your breath away! As you look out across the mountains, you will truly feel like you’re on top of the world.


On day four, you will reach the highest point of the trek, just over 17,000 feet. At this altitude, the views will become even more spectacular: snowcapped peaks touching the sky followed by multi-colored lakes. Soon, you will reach thermal springs near the village of Pacchanta- the perfect spot for a relaxing soak before the final stretch of the trek. Before you know it, you’ll be arriving back to Cusco, ready for a cold drink and a long rest, even more in awe of Peru’s beauty.

  • Ausangate/Rainbow Mountain adventure is one of the highest elevation treks available in Cusco, so it is HIGHLY recommended that you spend a minimum of two days in Cusco (or another high elevation city) to become acclimated before attempting the trip. The hike is generally medium difficulty, but will be MUCH harder if you have not first spent a few days at a high altitude.
  • Like many treks in Peru, the weather along the route is subject to sudden changes, so be prepared for warm days and cold nights- especially while at high altitudes. Nights can be as cold as 10-15° Fahrenheit, so don’t forget warm clothes, hats, and gloves!
  • The best time to trek is usually between June and August. This is Peru’s winter, and is known as the dry season. Trek conditions vary greatly depending on the weather, and while you can trek year-round, dry conditions are usually preferred.
  • Ausangate is located in remote, largely untouched wilderness- expect the unexpected! You will be traveling with a knowledgeable, local guide who will help you address any issues or concerns while trekking.
  • Trek the gorgeous Ausangate Circuit, famous for breathtaking natural scenery, such as glaciers, enormous peaks, turquoise lakes, and grazing alpacas
  • Enjoy a detour to the astounding Rainbow Mountain Vinicunca, also known as Yauricunca
  • Challenge yourself physically & disconnect with this remote, high altitude trek

Trek through some of the most beautiful scenery in all Peru! Our ”Ausangate Rainbow Mountain Vinicunca” route combines the famous Ausangate Circuit trek with a stop at Vinicunca, Peru’s incredible rainbow mountain.

Spend six days and five nights in the pristine, high altitude Andes. Take in views of Apu Ausangate, covered in enormous glaciers, colorful lakes, and Rainbow Mountain Vinicunca, a multicolored peak set among equally colorful hillsides and boarderd by steep snowcapped peaks. 

This is an adventurous overnight trip, with comfort camping under the starry skys of the southern hemisphere. We`ll visit remote villages and share the trail with curious alpacas along the way! We also offer a 2D/1N trek to Vinicunca, or the Ausangate Circuit seperately.

As with all Ayni Peru travel, this itinerary can be customized or combined with tours in Cusco and beyond. Please contact us for custom itineraries, quotes and questions.


Day 1Cusco-Upis

We will meet you at your Cusco hotel early in the morning for travel to Tinqi, the departure point for our Ausangate Circuit trek. In Tinqi we will meet our muleeters and purchase any last minute snacks or supplies before beginning the hike. The walk to our first campsite, Upis, will be approximately three hours of moderate incline. We pass potato fields, small farms, and groups of grazing alpacas and llamas before arriving at Upis. The air becomes cooler as we approach Ausangate and its breathtaking glaciers. We arrive in Upis in the late afternoon, and youll have the option to enjoy hotsprings before dinner. Upis is located at 4350 msnm, so be prepared for your first cold night!
Trek duration: 3 hours
Meals: Lunch, Dinner

Day 2Upis-Ausangatecocha

After an early breakfast, we will continue our hike with a climb to Arapa Pass, at 4750 msnm. The ascent will take approximately two hours, and cross through a sparsely vegetated and scenic valley. As we climb the valley we will enjoy panoramic views of majestic Ausangate mountain and its surroundings. From the pass we descend along a cliff dividing the mountian, with views of different colored lakes, including Yanacocha (black lake). Will will break for lunch at Yanacocha, then continue on to our campsite at Ausangatecocha at 4600 msnm.
Trek duration: 8 hours
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 3Ausangatecocha-Rainbow Mountain Vinicunca-Illacocha

Today we set out toward the Rainbow Mountian, crossing broad valleys and colorful hills. Arrive at the jaw dropping Rainbow Mountain midday, where we’ll have lunch, enjoy the spectacular scenery and relax a bit. The final leg of the hike is to Illacocha, where well set up camp for the night.
Trek Duration: 8 hours
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 4Illacocha-Jampa

From the lake we ascend to the Palomani pass (5,200 m/ 17 056 ft); the highest point of the trek. From the pass we follow the trail into the valley where we’ll rest and have lunch. During the afternoon we can enjoy views of the snowcapped Tres Picos and Puca Punta. We will continue through the broad green valley of Pampa Jutunpata and up the Jampa valley. Overnight camp near Jampa.
Trek duration: 5 hours
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 5Jampa-Pacchanta

After passing through the small community of Jampa we head to the last pass of this hike, the Q’ampa pass. Along the way we enjoy views of different colored lakes and lunch beside on of the most beautiful. From there, hike approximately two hours to the village of Pacchanta. We can soak in the thermal springs for a couple of hours, and even have a well-deserved beer! We set up camp near Pacchanta, with the afternoon free to explore the Andean village.
Trek duration: 6 hours
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 6Pacchanta-Cusco

After breakfast, well hike an easy 1-2 hours to the village of Tinqi. Our van and driver will be waiting for the trip back to Cusco. Late afternoon dropoff at your Cusco hotel.
Trek duration: 1.5-2 hours
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Price Includes
  • Professional and experienced English-speaking guide
  • Cook and fresh, healthy meals while trekking
  • Mules and muleteers to carry equipment, supplies, and personal items
  • Private transportation from your Cusco hotel to the trek departure point and back
  • All required equipment except sleeping bag.
Price Excludes
  • International & domestic flights. Ayni is able to include airfare at additional cost; please contact us for a quote!
  • Traveler`s insurance
  • Discretionary expenses such as gratuities, snacks, alcoholic beverages, etc.
  • Add a stargazing, astro-photography and Inca astronomy tour. $39 USD per person.
  • -15C sleeping bag with fleece liner and hot water bottle- $20 USD each.
  • 1 Pair Trekking Poles- $20 USD each.
  • Additional Riding Horse- $69 each. One emergency riding horse per 5 trekkers included in trek price.
  • Comfort Camping Upgrade- $76 USD per person. Includes -15C sleeping bag with fleece liner, hot water bottle, a pair of trekking poles, larger tent with solar lantern, extra thick air mattress, and wine served with dinner each night.

Rainbow Mountain and Ausangate treks do not include a final day at Machu Picchu. However, Ayni offers several Machu Picchu extensions that can be added either before or after your trek.

  • Our Machu Picchu Luxury Tour is an excellent way to relax in comfort after a beautiful yet challenging multi-day trek.
  • The Machu Picchu with Homestay extension combines authentic, off the beaten path experiences along with a visit to Peru’s wonder of the world.
  • The Express Machu Picchu and Sacred Valley extension fits all the highlights of the area in a few quick days.