Cusco What to Pack
Cusco’s weather is very variable, so get prepared and know what to pack for your visit and hike.
Luggage and Bags
If you are hiring a porter to carry your backpack, carry a second smaller daypack with you. Don’t forget to lock your bigger pack since it will make it to the campsite before you do. Ideally, a light travel bag or backpack is enough. You really don’t want to lug a heavy suitcase around (and don’t need to unless you plan to shop while in Peru), plus for the hike you’ll need something smaller anyway. Also bring a rainproof covering to keep your bags dry.
If you’re going to spend a few days in the Cusco area, it’s strongly recommended you pack clothing that can be layered. For instance, during the day it’s very likely to be sunny and warm, but if gets cloudy, it will be cold. Carry a light rain jacket or sweater that you can put on and take off as the temperature fluctuates. Several pieces of wicking clothing (shirts and socks) will also come in handy. Bring a fleece, hat, and mittens on the Inca Trail because it gets very cold at night.
Pack sturdy and comfortable shoes to do all the walking! The streets are made of bumpy stones in the busier areas, so you’ll have to watch yourself. Also, the sidewalks can be narrow and sometimes there are steps where you least expect them.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies
Important items to bring:
- Small toiletry kit with the usual stuff, but include a quick drying towel and deodorant
- Insect repellant
- Toilet paper
- Immodium AD (just in case)
- First aid kit with the basics
Wrap your toiletries in a sealed plastic bag before arrival, since the change in altitude can cause containers to burst
Sleeping bags, tents and sleeping mats are usually provided by the trek company, but bring your own sleeping bag liner to be safe. Here are some other items to bring:
- A wide-brimmed hat
- Carabineer are good to have handy – attach water bottles to your daypack
- Snacks to eat on the trail
- Small money carrier or camera carrier for easy access to your money, map and camera
If you don’t have a walking stick, splurge ($1 or $2) and buy the bamboo walking poles at the trailhead. You won’t regret it!
Editor’s Note: The information contained on this page was compiled using real traveler reviews about what to pack when visiting Cusco.