If you are in the imperial city of Cusco and are looking for a short (one day) adventure, you can take Humantay Lake tour (also known as Laguna Humantay).
It is one of the best adventures you can find in Cusco, the route is steep but short and an hour and a half walk takes us to an incredibly blue lake at the bottom of a huge glacier. 4000 meters above sea level, it is literally spectacular!
how to get to Lake Humantay in Cusco.
It’s very easy to organize your Lake Humantay adventure. The trek is a common tourist attraction with daily tours that can be booked in several ways. But the best and safest is to buy a tour offered by the local tourist agencies.
Reserve your tour at one of the agencies’ offices in the city of Cusco. There are many tourist offices that offer services for all tastes. Most of these tours are relatively cheaper compared to others such as trips to Machu Picchu. They include pick-up and return to your hotel in Cusco and possibly include a lunch (depending on each travel agency). These tours are guaranteed thanks to the ease of the walks and it is likely that you are part of a group of visitors who took the adventure in the same tourist agency.
You can book your tour in advance, through each agency’s website, and ensure that you are on a high quality tour with current revisions. This tour generally costs $45 per person and includes pick up and delivery to your hotel, sometimes including lunch.
Private tour to Humantay Lagoon.
In addition to group tours, today thanks to the demand of visitors, you can buy private tours to the Humantay Lagoon. A private tour is highly recommended for family trips or with friends.
If you want to avoid heavy itineraries and be confined to a group trip, where sometimes group trips and guides can limit you to enjoy and take pictures at will, it is highly recommended to hire a private tour to Humantay Lagoon.
The main benefit of a private tour could be to leave a little later than 3 a.m., group tours leave very early, and be in the lake until the end of the afternoon. You would arrive at your hotel in Cusco a little later, but it would be worth the whole comfortable adventure with all the beautiful photographs taken for souvenirs.
entrance fee to lagoon Humantay.
If you make the trip at your own expense from Cusco with a taxi or a car, you will have to pay the entrance fee of $10 for the walk, which is paid in a security box located at the beginning of the road.
If the tour is in charge of a tourist agency, they will be the ones who include that cost at the time of purchase, it is a matter of asking for information and they will be the ones who prepare the whole trip, you will only have to go on your adventure without worries.
Difficulty and altitude in the hike to lagoon Humantay.
The hike to Lake Humantay is short with moderate-high difficulty. In reality, and generally, it only takes an hour and a half to get to the lake. However, it is somewhat steep as the place is located on the heights of the great “Apu salkantay“. In fact, it is steeper in certain parts and starts at about 3,800 meters above sea level and ends at 4,200 meters above sea level.
One thing to keep in mind is the famous “altitude sickness” and that you run out of breath very easily if you are not used to long walks. During the ascent you can take several breaks on the way, no problem, in addition the tour guides are fully trained and understand when the adventurers need a break.
As in any great adventure, on the route to Humantay you will find friendly hands willing to help those who make the ascent difficult. The locals wait for those who make it difficult with this magnificent ascent with the horses, of course they expect some tipping, but it is one of the best options if you suffer from forces halfway. Actually, it’s quite fun (not for horses).