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What You Need to Know Before Visiting Vinicunca

Prepare for a day filled with exciting adventures. Visit the Rainbow Mountain in a different and unique way from the traditional one. In this experience, you will have the opportunity to ride a horse and enjoy one of the most memorable journeys to the mountain’s summit. Additionally, the travel time is significantly reduced.

The horseback ride begins from the bus station and ends almost at the top of the Rainbow Mountain. After an exciting ride, you will only need to walk for about 5 to 10 minutes to reach the summit and enjoy the stunning views of Vinicunca.

Weather at Rainbow Mountain

The weather at Rainbow Mountain, Vinicunca, is highly variable and can change quickly without warning. While the weather in Cusco might be more predictable, it is a different story on the mountain. You can check the weather forecast on Google to see if it will be sunny, cloudy, or rainy on the day of your tour, but it is unlikely to be entirely accurate. Therefore, it is always best to be prepared for any weather conditions when venturing to Vinicunca.

Physical Requirements

You don’t need to be in excellent physical shape to enjoy the tour. However, it’s important to consider that the altitude (5,200 meters above sea level) can affect some people. Don’t worry, our guide will always be by your side to help and provide the necessary support in case you experience any discomfort related to the altitude or other issues.

Previous Experience Needed for Horseback Riding

You don’t need to be an expert in horseback riding to enjoy this tour. If it’s your first time or you are not accustomed to riding, don’t worry. Our guide and the local villagers, who are experts in handling horses, will be there to assist you. They will provide tips and advice to help you feel safe and comfortable.

Both the guide and the villager will be with you at all times, ensuring you have a safe and pleasant experience while enjoying the journey to the Rainbow Mountain.

At What Altitude Does the Horseback Riding Start and How High Will We Go?

Our horseback riding tour begins from the bus station

at an altitude of approximately 4,650 meters above sea level (15,256 feet). We will ascend to an altitude of 5,200 meters above sea level (17,060 feet). The route is 40% gradual and 60% steep, but not excessively steep.

Horse Capacity

The load capacity of the horses used to reach the Rainbow Mountain depends on their health and physical condition. In general, these horses can carry a weight of up to 120 kg (264 lbs), ensuring a safe and comfortable journey for most tourists.

Description of the Terrain

The journey to the Rainbow Mountain features varied terrain. Approximately 40% of the tour is a gradual ascent, while 60% is steeper. However, don’t worry, as you will be riding a well-trained horse, making the gradual and steep ascent of the terrain almost unnoticeable.

Can I Visit the Red Valley on Horseback?

Not necessarily. Let me explain: if you have already decided to go to the Rainbow Mountain Vinicunca on horseback, that’s perfect. However, if you also want to visit the Red Valley on the same trip, it is possible, but there are some restrictions. The horses have a starting point and an ending point that cannot be changed.

In summary, you will be able to use the horse until the end of its route. Then, you can decide whether to visit the Rainbow Mountain Vinicunca or the Red Valley first. The horse will leave you only 10 minutes away from the Rainbow Mountain and about 30 minutes from the Red Valley.

Can I Rent the Horses on My Own?

Absolutely! We will provide you with all the information you need on where and how you can rent them. It is very simple, and we will give you the necessary directions so you can enjoy this experience on your own or with us.

Which is Better: Walking or Riding a Horse?

If you enjoy hiking and have an adventurous spirit, opting to walk might be the best choice for you, with an approximate time of 2 hours. However, if you prefer to arrive faster and reduce travel time, riding a horse is ideal.

The horse will take you almost to the top of the mountain, leaving you just a few minutes of walking to reach the summit of Vinicunca, which stands at 5,200 meters above sea level.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Riding a Horse to the Mountain

Opting to ride a horse to the Rainbow Mountain has clear advantages, especially in terms of accessibility and reducing physical effort. However, it also has its disadvantages, such as additional costs and possible comfort and safety inconveniences.


Less Physical Effort:

Riding a horse involves a considerable saving of energy compared to walking, which is especially beneficial for those not in the best physical condition or not accustomed to long distances and high altitudes (5,200 meters above sea level).


Riding a horse makes the Rainbow Mountain more accessible, benefiting older people, children, and those with physical limitations, allowing them to reach this spectacular destination more easily and quickly.

Enjoying the Scenery:

Riding a horse gives you the opportunity to enjoy the landscapes in a unique way. Being higher up on the horse, you can appreciate one of the best panoramic views of the landscapes, including the imposing Ausangate and the spectacular Red Valley.

Constant Accompaniment:

Having local guides and the support of the local people who manage the horses provides constant and trustworthy support throughout the journey.

Cultural Immersion:

The horseback tour offers an authentic cultural experience by immersing you in a traditional practice of local communities like Kairawiri, providing a deeper connection with the local culture.

Priority at the Summit:

By choosing the horseback tour, you will have the advantage of arriving almost first at the mountain’s summit. This will allow you to enjoy a quiet moment without the crowd of tourists who go on foot.


Additional Costs:

Renting the horses incurs an additional cost that varies depending on the option chosen. The typical price is 70 soles for one-way and 90 soles for round-trip, which can increase the total tour cost.

Comfort and Safety:

Riding a horse can be uncomfortable for those not accustomed or not feeling secure in this activity. However, the presence of experienced local guides can mitigate these fears by providing tips and assistance during the ride.

Risk of Falls:

Despite the horses’ training and the local guides’ experience, there is an inherent risk of falls or accidents during the horseback ride.

Environmental Impact:

Soil Erosion: Horse traffic can contribute to soil erosion in sensitive areas along the route, representing a negative environmental impact.

Tour Availability

We offer two service options: Group service and Private service.

Group Service:

We limit our groups to a maximum of 6 people to ensure and maximize a high-quality experience. With smaller groups, horse management is more efficient, and our guides can provide detailed information, ensuring all participants’ satisfaction.

Private Service:

For a more personalized and exclusive experience, we offer private services. You can choose to travel alone, with family, or friends, tailoring the tour to your individual preferences. The decision is yours.


Journeying by horse through the spectacular scenery of the Andes Mountains we finally arrive in the lookout point of rainbow mountain, one of the most incredible places of Cusco.

We will pick you up from your hotel at 3:00 am then embark on the trip to the marvelous Rainbow mountain, take the road by Urcus, quiquijana and getting to beginning of our horse ride Chilliwanki (4650m /15,255 feet), where you can appreciate the mountain landscape.

A 35 minutes tour of horseback riding that will afford you a great view of the Andes, you will see hundreds of llamas and alpacas,

After 35 minutes of horseback riding we will get off the horse and hike up the last part which will take 20 minutes to the get to the top of the rainbow mountain (5100m/16,568feet), where will enjoy an incredible panoramic view of Rainbow Mountain, snowcapped mountain and its surroundings, we will have plenty of time to contemplate and take a lot of pictures.

Later, we will take the horseback riding to head trail where will take our van back to Cusco and drop you off at your Hotel at around 1:00pm ( in case we come straight to Cusco after viising rainbow mountain)

On the way back to Cusco we can visit the amazing Inca site of Tipon, (terraces and water fountains) after visiting exploring the stunning tipon we will head back to Cusco at around 4:30pm. to 5.00pm and


  • Professional guide
  • Private transport
  • We only include breakfast in case of coming back straigh to Cusco after visiting Rainbow Mountain)
  • we include breakafst and lunch if we do the full day tour including the inca site of Tipon
  • Horses to ride (very import: Horses will take you close to the top of rainbow mountain, you have to hike the last part of the trail, 20 minutes of hiking to the top.


  • Entrance fee to rainbow mountain 25 soles per person
  • Entrance to Tipon inca site : 70 soles per person.
  • Tips for our crew

USD 156.00 per person for a Group of 2 people (prices reduce if there are more people in your group).
USD 145.00 per person for a Group of 3 people.
USD 109.00 per person for a Group of 4 people.
USD 99.00 per person for a Group of 5 people + more.


  • Warm clothes such as a jacket, a fleece, woolly hat and gloves because it is cold and windy up in the mountains
  • Sun hat
  • Sun cream
  • Sun glasses
  • Rain gear
  • Water to drink (a liter and half each)
  • Snacks to eat like chocolates, quinoa bars.
  • Extra money in cash
  • Camera and films


  • If you decide to cancel your tour less than 5 days before it begins, unfortunately, we won’t be able to offer any refunds.
  • If you cancel between 5 to 7 days before your tour starts, we’ll refund 50% of your payment.
  • Now, if you cancel more than 7 days in advance, we’re happy to refund 90%, but we do need to keep a 10% fee to cover some administrative costs.
  • Changing the date of your tour is possible, but it does come with a fee of $20 per traveler, and it’s subject to availability.
  • Now, when it comes to unforeseen circumstances like delayed flights, train schedule changes, bad weather, or sudden strikes that impact the tour, unfortunately, we can’t issue refunds in those cases. We’re really sorry for any inconvenience they may cause.

Do we own the horses?

No, we don’t own the horses; instead, we rent them from local residents.

Do I ride the horse alone, or is there someone guiding it?

You won’t be riding the horse solo. Each horse is accompanied by a local person who leads it throughout the entire journey.

Can beginners ride horses to Rainbow Mountain?

Absolutely! Our horseback riding tours cater to riders of all levels, including beginners. Our experienced guides will ensure you feel comfortable and safe throughout the journey.

How long does the horseback ride to Rainbow Mountain take?

The duration of the ride can vary depending on factors like weather conditions and the pace of the person who pull the horse. On average, expect the ride to take about 25 to 30 minutes one way.

Do I need prior horseback riding experience?

Not at all! Our skilled guides will provide basic riding instructions before we embark on the journey. They’ll also be there to assist you every step of the way.

What should I wear for the horseback ride?

Dress in layers to accommodate changes in weather. Comfortable, closed-toe shoes are essential. Don’t forget a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen to protect yourself from the sun.

Is there a weight limit for riders?

Yes, for the safety and well-being of our horses, there is a weight limit. The horses can take up to 100 kilograms.

Can I bring my own horse for the ride?

For the sake of consistency and safety, we provide well-trained horses for all our riders. However, if you have concerns or special requests, feel free to reach out to us, and we’ll do our best to accommodate you.

Are there any age restrictions for riders?

We recommend that riders be at least 7 years old to participate in our tours. Younger children may be accommodated on a case-by-case basis, with parental supervision and approval.

What kind of terrain should I expect during the ride?

The terrain can vary from gentle slopes to rocky paths. Our horses are accustomed to navigating these terrains, but riders should be prepared for some uneven ground and changes in elevation.

Is there a restroom available during the ride?

Restroom facilities may be limited along the trail, so we recommend using the restroom before the ride begins. However, our guides will do their best to accommodate restroom breaks when possible.

Can I bring a camera or smartphone on the ride?

Yes, we encourage you to capture the stunning views along the way. Just be sure to secure your devices properly to prevent them from getting damaged during the ride.

What safety measures do I need to keep in mind?

Prioritize safety by following the instructions of our experienced guides at all times. Always wear a helmet while riding and adhere to any other safety guidelines provided during the tour.

What happens in case of inclement weather?

Your safety is our top priority. In the event of inclement weather, our guides will assess the situation and make necessary adjustments to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for all riders.

Can I cancel or reschedule my reservation?

We understand that plans can change. Please refer to our cancellation and rescheduling policies for more information. We’ll make every effort to meet your needs whenever we can.

How can I book a horseback riding tour to Rainbow Mountain?

Booking is easy! Simply visit our website or contact us directly to reserve your spot. We look forward to guiding you on this unforgettable adventure to Rainbow Mountain!