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Inca Trail to Machu Picchu in May

Written by Sam Corporations February 8, 2023

Inca Trail to Machu Picchu in May

The Inca Trail in May starts calm, but as the days go on, it becomes busier, meaning that this is the beginning of the high season in Cusco and Machu Picchu. Weather behavior in May is generally pretty good, with sunshine for most of the day, so the countryside landscape is visible for everyone allowing them to take enthralling pictures. There might be occasional light rains, remember the Inca trail to Machu Picchu posses more than one microclimate, but heavy rains for hours are definitely not something to be worried about. Temperatures at night can go down as low as zero degrees, so it is cold, but as long as you go with layers, everything will be fine. Put on shorts when it is hot and a warm fleece jacket at night for chilly weather. The day experience is what matters most here due to the visibility of beautiful landscapes.

Did you know that SAM Corporations is a Direct Local Tour operator and provides proper trekking gear to their porters? Also they have satellite phone and private toilet tent. Book with us and enjoy this unique hike to Machu Picchu.

Things to Know

  • May marks the beginning of the dry season in Cusco region, and thus, it is one of the best months to hike the Inca Trail.
  • Inca Trail permits sell out quickly for May. (You must book in October of the year before your trip at least)
  • During May in Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, at night, early morning or crossing the Dead woman pass is very cold.
  • Early-to-mid-May is still shoulder season, and so flowers still continue to bloom, and the mountainsides are green.
  • Temperature: It ranges between 0 and 21.1-celsius degrees. (32 and 70 ° F)
  • Rain: It rains on average 3 days of the month.


  • You will appreciate beautiful flora and fauna and occasional birds on sunny day
  • Wild fauna such as deers come for water to the small lakes.
  • The Southern Milky Way appears in the night because of the clear sky
  • The outstanding views of the snow-clad mountains
  • The skies will be blue and brilliant.
  • Rainfall will be less.
  • Hike one of the best trail to Machu Picchu passing through the Sun Gate.
  • This is the month when the moon is at its brightest during the night.
  • A high chance to see the sunrise over Machu Picchu from the sun gate.


  • Inca trail permits run out quicker and need to be booked way in advance.
  • A high number of trekkers on the trail in the last 2 weeks of May.
  • There is a slight risk of late rains extending into the first week of May.
  • Bus stations and Machu Picchu entry get slightly crowded.
  • Cold nights


  • If you are thinking to hike Inca Trail in May, we recommend you do it in the first two weeks of May because, in the early-to-mid-May is still very much shoulder season, and so crowds are still far short of what they become in June through August.
  • Bring sunblock and chapstick for skin protection.
  • Bring layers of clothes because there are times you will be hot and sweaty. And other times, you will be cold like at the top of the mountain.
  • For bird watchers, bring a long zoom camera or binoculars.
  • Booking in advance is recommended for at least 8 months.
  • Bring sunglasses for solar radiation.
  • You need to pack both for the hot weather and the cold.

*** You MUST take with you your original passport!

A key activity in Cusco

On May 3rd, in the city of Cusco and various towns in the region, citizens gather at the catholic feasting of Cruz Velacuy. Each year the congregation renews the old shrouds of the crosses; there in Saqsayhuamn hill, and the crosses in front of churches within the city.

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Sam Corporations


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

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

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