Biking In Cusco

Biking in Cusco is an exhilarating way to explore the region’s stunning landscapes, archaeological sites, and vibrant local culture. With a range of trails that vary in difficulty and scenery, Cusco offers something for every level of mountain biker, from casual riders to hardcore enthusiasts.

Types of Biking Tours in Cusco

  1. Mountain Biking

    • Terrain: Ranges from high-altitude passes to ancient Inca trails and downhills through the Sacred Valley.
    • Difficulty: Varies widely, from easy rides suitable for families to challenging tracks that demand technical skills and good physical condition.
    • Popular Routes:
      • Maras and Moray: This route combines cultural visits with biking. It features moderate trails and visits to the circular terraces of Moray and the salt pans of Maras.
      • Downhill from Abra Málaga to Ollantaytambo: Starts high in the Andes and descends into the Sacred Valley, offering thrilling landscapes and suitable for more experienced riders.
  2. Road Cycling

    • Terrain: Paved roads that wind through the Andes and small villages.
    • Difficulty: Challenging due to long distances and high altitude.
    • Routes: There are less common but rewarding road cycling opportunities around the Cusco area that can lead to less-visited archaeological sites or scenic viewpoints.

What to Expect

  • Scenery: Expect dramatic changes in scenery, from snowy mountain peaks and lush forests to open highland plains and traditional villages.
  • Duration: Bike tours can range from a few hours to full-day or even multi-day adventures.
  • Equipment: Tour companies typically provide mountain bikes, helmets, and other necessary equipment. High-quality, well-maintained bikes are crucial for a safe and enjoyable ride.

Choosing a Biking Tour

  • Reputation & Reviews: Choose companies with excellent reviews and proven track records in safety.
  • Guide Expertise: Experienced, knowledgeable guides can enhance your experience significantly, providing insights into the local history and culture as well as ensuring your route is safe.
  • Group Size: Smaller groups tend to provide a better experience, allowing guides to give more attention to each participant.

Practical Tips

  • What to Bring: Wear comfortable, weather-appropriate clothing, sturdy shoes, sunglasses, sunscreen, and a hat. A small backpack can be useful for carrying water, snacks, and a camera.
  • Altitude Sickness: Cusco is at a high altitude, and many biking trails go even higher. It’s important to acclimatize to the altitude before engaging in strenuous activity. Stay hydrated and consider spending a few days in Cusco before your biking tour.
  • Safety Gear: Always wear a helmet and other recommended safety gear. If biking independently, ensure you have a repair kit and know how to fix basic bike issues.
  • Local Weather: Weather can change rapidly in the mountains, so be prepared for everything from strong sun to rain and cold winds.

Biking in Cusco not only provides a physical challenge but also offers an intimate way to connect with the landscape and culture of this historic region. Whether you’re rolling through rural villages, past ancient ruins, or down rugged trails, biking here promises to be an unforgettable adventure.