Hiking Peru’s Rainbow Mountain

The Rainbow Mountain in Peru looks unreal, but you can actually go here.

Hiking Rainbow Mountain Peru is one of the most popular day trips from Cusco, Peru. There are countless number of tour agencies offering day trips from Cusco but we chose to go with Flashpacker Connect.

Going with FlashpackerConnect meant that we got picked up from our hotel around 2:15am (most other tour agencies pick up between 3-4am). Yes, this is early, but it also means you will be the first ones to get to The Rainbow Mountain. The beautiful multicolored mountain can attract up to a thousand visitors a day, so it’s a hugeperk to be the first ones up! .

Vinicunca, also called Montaña de Siete Colores (Mountain of Seven Colors), is located in the Andes in the Cusco region of Peru. In order to get to the trailhead, it’s a three-hour drive from Cusco. To get to the lookout, you’ll need to hike about six miles. The trip is fairly challenging so it’s not recommended for beginner hikers. I am so grateful that we have professional guides who carry medicine and oxygen to help with the altitude sickness, and they are very attentive to every person on the tour.

.They say that the best view comes after the hardest climb, and this could not be more true for Rainbow Mountain.

But what makes the rainbow mountain turn so many different colors? The reason why these colors have formed is because of ice that used to cover the area,  When it started to melt, the water mixed with minerals in the ground, turning the earth into the many colors. Red areas are due to rust mixtures, yellows are due to iron sulphide, purples are from goethite or oxidized limonite, and the greens come from chlorite.

We had the opportunity to take photos with alpacas! Our guide even told us that we should tip the owners of the alpacas 1-2 soles.

Don’t forget get a passport stamp of the mountain!

COST TO HIKE RAINBOW MOUNTAIN

With Flashpacker Connect, it costs $150 per person for the Rainbow Mountain day trip from Cusco, including breakfast, lunch, snacks, water, transportation, oxygen, and a guide. The only things not included were tips, the cost to ride a horse up (if you choose to do that) of $25 (80 soles), and for the passport stamp at the top.

If you’re embarking on this difficult hike, best to do it with professionals! Thank you so much to the FlashpackerConnect for making our trip to Rainbow Mountain an adventure to remember!

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