Peruvian Jungle trail
During my time in Cusco I went to Machu Picchu. I didn´t book early enough to go on the Inca Trail, you need to book months in advance, so instead I went on the jungle trail. I booked through the agency in EcoPackers hostel because they were the cheapest we could find for what we wanted to do, however their organization was pretty terrible and I wouldn´t recommend them.
We were basically sold to another company who put us on a 3 night trip instead of a 2 night trip, meaning we were unprepared for a day of intense hiking.
They also failed to organise our zip lining with the company we paid for and we ended up having to go with a different company.
Read more: The Grandeur of Pisaq
Nonetheless, the trip was still great. Our first day was spent biking down from 4000m to 1500m where we spent the night in a hostel. The second day we spent hiking up through cloud forest and saw monkeys and coca plantations. We were also told about the different types of plants and animals that we passed. The third day we went zip lining ($30 USD) over 3.5km of zip lines. It was great fun and the weather made the views spectacular. In the afternoon we hiked to Aguas Calientes where we stayed the night.
Aguas Calientes is a very touristy but still very nice little town, right at the base of the path to Machu Picchu. We woke at 4.30am and began walking at 5am to the ruins in order to catch the sunrise. Unfortunately it was raining the whole way there and for most of the day and so the ruins lost some of their wonder, however they were still spectacular. I would say that the view of the mountains and the river below is what really makes the place magical.
Read more: Backpacking the ruins of Machu Picchu
We returned on the train and arrived at Pariwana hostel Cusco late at night. The staff were quick and friendly and before long we were in our comfy beds. We are in a 6 bed dorm and are paying 31 soles a night, cheap for the facilities here and easily the best hostel I have stayed in throughout Argentina, Bolivia and Peru. Our total jungle trail trip cost $250 USD which included the train back, a guide for all four days, entrance to the ruins and food an accommodation for all 4 days. The zip lining was optional but I would recommend doing it if you haven´t before