Contact Us

Exploring the Red Valley Peru | Facts & Information

Written by Sam Corporations February 10, 2023

Exploring the Red Valley Peru | Facts & Information

Tips and Tricks for exploring the Red Valley when in Peru

Breathtaking, that is the best way to describe what you see at the Red Valley in Cusco, Peru. The crazy part? Very little people visit this place, which is incredible as the Red Valley is right next to the rainbow mountain, a popular tourist attraction nowadays!

Hike the classic Rainbow mountain; Vinicunca and get exploring the Red Valley in a day without missing anything. Fight out some topics below:

Why should you go?

Because it’s unique. As far as you can see… Red mountains dotted by green and grey. The views are endless. It’s Quiet. Unlike its brother on the other side of the hill (the rainbow mountains), this place is way less visited. In comparison, there will be around 10 to 20 people at the viewpoint versus hundreds at the rainbow. Great Value for Money; What a great way to finish your hike at Rainbow mt and explore more colors with the Red Valley in 1 day!

Check the weather

As we have mentioned before, the weather has a big influence on your Red Valley experience because when it hasn’t rained for a while you can do a hike through the Red Valley. Otherwise, you can only see from the view point which still has amazing views.

As we are talking about great hights (over 5000 m), the weather is a little unpredictable. However, in general, in the rainy season (November to March) you have a bigger chance of clouds/snow/rain (but a smaller chance on crowds).

Best Time of the Year for Exploring the Red Valley in Cusco

There are two main seasons in the Peruvian Andes:

  • The dry season runs from late April through to early October.
  • The wet season starts mid to late October and ends in April.

But, When is the best time of the year to do the Red Valley?

The trek can technically be completed all year round, the peak trekking season occurs during the dry season and is busiest between May and September.


Day 1: Cusco – Cisipata – Llacto – Rainbow Mt – Llacto – Cusco

  • Pick up from your hotel at 4am in our private van and transfer to trailhead.
  • Enjoy your breakfast.
  • The hike up takes about 1.5 hours along a trail that goes up a desert valley, with full view of glaciers.
  • Enjoy the colorfull Rainbow 
  • Then hike for 45meters to the Red Valley.
  • The hike back to the trail-head enjoying the amazing views of glaciers and valleys.
  • Highest elevation: 5100mt/16732ft
  • After lunch, we take our van back to Cusco
  • Arrive to your hotel in Cusco around 5pm.

****A horse can be hired for the majority of the trek. However, the last 600m are too steep for horses and you will have to walk this last part. The cost is about 100 soles roundtrip which your guide can negotiate. 

Finding the Red Valley

So where is the Red Valley? It located in Cusco, Peru right next to the Rainbow Mountain. Just above the last horse point on the way up to the final ascent to the mountain, you see a small route to the left of you with a rope. In the distance it leads to a ridge, that’s where you find the Red Valley checkpoint. After paying 10 soles, you already have a perfect view, but you can hike down a bit to the viewpoint. Optionally, you could climb the mountain there as well.

TIP: Makes sure you have a good camera because you will want to capture this otherworldly view!!

To return to the carpark, walk back in the direction you came from and pass the checkpoint again. Now, don’t go back all the way to the horses at the top. Just after the passage through two black rocks, there is a short cut to the car parking. Cannot find it? Just walking down randomly works as well.

Preparing your visit to the Red Valley

Just like for a visit to the rainbow mountain, make sure you are prepared for high altitude. Try to be acclimatized before going. Flying from Lima to Cusco and hiking at 5,100m/16,732ft the next day, is NOT a good idea. Furthermore, take your altitude pills already in Cusco so that they work once you arrive and maybe bring some extra.

Regarding clothes, wear layers, dress warm (hat and gloves) and bring sunblock. Only with rain, hiking shoes are a must. If it’s dry you can rock your Adidas’s. Bring some nice snacks (although the breakfast is filling enough), or a thermos with coca tea to enjoy the view. Lastly, it’s awesome to bring some small money to tip the cooks and driver, they don’t expect it!

Which is the best Red Valley Tour Operators?

Although there are several options for tour operators that offer Salkantay treks, here we have some list of the top rated Salkantay trekking companies

Conclusion for exploring the Red Valley

When in Peru the Red Vally is a must-visit. It is an otherworldy experience and not yet ruined by tourism!

Hike Machu Picchu: Which Route Should You Choose?

Hike Machu Picchu: Which Route Should You Choose?

Looking for a Machu Picchu hike? Here are the top 3 Machu Picchu hikes, with the pros and cons of each. Plus some lesser-known treks you might like to try. The best way to get to Machu Picchu is on foot. Alright, arriving by wingsuit or bungee jump would be pretty cool… But Machu Picchu […]

10 Epic Things to do in Puno, Peru

10 Epic Things to do in Puno, Peru

Puno, Peru is the capitol city of the Puno region that sits at the edge of Lake Titicaca – which is the highest navigable lake in the world. There are many things to do in Puno that a visit to this border city should be on everyone’s itinerary through Peru. The people of Puno like […]

A Guide to Eating Vegetarian in Peru - Sam Corporations

A Travel Guide For Eating Vegetarian Food in Peru

Though Peru has enjoyed its rank as the top international culinary destination for over a decade, only in the past few years has vegetarian food in Peru become part of an accepted and understood lifestyle. Vegetarian and even vegan Peruvian food can be found in major cities such as Cusco and Lima, and the bounty […]

Sam Corporations


Local Peruvian Company

Our company is 100% locally owned. We directly contribute to economic development and environmental sustainability in Peru.

Service Quality

The quality of our service is one of our most important values which demands all our effort, determination, and courage to be successful in what we are doing and the services we provide

Responsible travel

We aim to have a positive impact in all the areas that we visit. Through our training sessions and social projects, we empower women, indigenous communities and children

Small Personalized Groups

Our groups never exceed 10 people, giving you a personalized tour in our small comfortable vans

100% Customised Itinerary

Interested in visiting only specific destinations? No problem, all our packages can be fully customized to suit your budget and schedule. Contact our travel advisors to plan the most comprehensive trip of a lifetime.

Community and Environment

We commit socially and culturally to the community and adapt our business strategies to the preservation of the environment

  • 100% Locally owned and operated.
  • Best Tour guides & trip leaders.
  • Quality-Touch & Personalized service
  • Highest quality, name brand equipment.
  • All Inclusive Tours with no hidden fees.
  • Sustainable Prctice and responsible travel.
  • Safety conscious with first aid training annually.
  • Unique Tours & Trekking routes
  • Customized Tours & Packages forFair and kind travel.
  • Personalized Attention with the Most Dedicated Team
  • Giving back to our local communities



100% Customised itinerary

Contact our travel advisors to plan the most complete trip of your life.

Easy communication

Simplified ease of communication, text us on WhatsApp, email or call us.

Professional and experienced

Our guides are local and have vast knowledge in Peruvian culture and history.

Local peruvian company

100% local company. Development and environmental sustainability

Small personalized groups

Our groups never exceed 10 people, giving you an unforgettable experience

Memorable trips

Discover an exceptional journey where perfection meets adventure.