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Choquequirao

Remote, spectacular, and still not entirely cleared, the ruins of Choquequirao are often described as a mini–Machu Picchu. This breathtaking site at the junction of three rivers currently requires a challenging two-day hike each way, though you will be happy if you budget more time for it.

Many see it as ‘the next big thing' in Inca ruins tourism. In fact, the Peruvian government has already approved controversial plans to put in a tramway, the country's first, with a capacity of 3000 visitors daily. It would bring this remote attraction to within 15 minutes of the nearby highway. Conservationists worry about its potential impact.

For now, you can still go without the crowds. Most Cuzco trekking operators go. Travelers can also organize the walk on their own, but it is remote and its steepness makes it very challenging, especially if you're carrying a heavy pack.

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These are our favorite local haunts, touristy spots, and hidden gems throughout Choquequirao.

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