Getting There & Away
Chivay is the transportation hub of the canyon region. The bus terminal is a 10- to 15-minute walk from the central Plaza de Armas. There are at least nine daily departures to Arequipa (S13, three hours), the best with Reyna and Andalucia, and four daily with Milagros to Cabanaconde (S8, 2½ hours, from 7:30am), stopping at towns along the southern side of the canyon and at the Cruz del Cóndor.
Combis (minibuses; S2 to S5) and colectivo (shared transportation) taxis run to the surrounding villages from street corners in the market area, just north of the main plaza, or you can arrange a private taxi. Mountain bikes in varying condition can be readily hired from travel agencies on the plaza for about S10 a day.
Traveling onward to Cuzco from Chivay is possible on Monday, Wednesday and Friday with the tourist-geared 4M Express, departing at 6:45am northwest of Chivay's Plaza de Armas and arriving at Cuzco's Av 28 de Julio at 4:30pm. For those on a budget, some travelers have managed to catch combis to Puente Callalli and flag down a bus there, but it’s much safer and probably just as fast to return to Arequipa instead.
To get to Puno, it's only slightly cheaper to return to Arequipa but you'll save a few hours by taking a daily direct (stopping for food and photo ops) tourist bus from Chivay with the luxurious 4M Express or comfortable Rutas del Sur, all leaving just off Chivay's Plaza de Armas at 1:30pm and arriving at Puno's Plaza de Armas at 7:30pm. If you have taken a tour from Arequipa, let your guide know you don't plan on returning.
It is possible (and cheaper and unsafer) to take a minivan (S7) to outside of Chivay and flag down a regular bus (S15) to Puno, but you might be waiting for over an hour in the cold for a ride.