About 100 kilometers southeast of Cusco, Peru, there is a Rainbow Mountain.
It is the Rainbow Mountain, also known as Vinicunca or Arcoiris.
The mountain is located in the Cordillera del Vilcanota at 5,200 meters above sea level, in the district of Pitumarca.
Its slopes and peaks are tinged with stripes of intense shades of fuchsia, turquoise, lavender and gold.
The seven-colored mountain or Rainbow Mountain, or better known by locals as Cerro
Colorado, is located in Vinicunca, province of Quipicanchis, department of Cusco.
Its geological formations reveal all their splendor, in contrast with the blue sky forming a formidable barrier between the coastal desert and the Amazon rainforest, dominated by the beautiful snowy Ausangate (6384 m), one of the great apus of this region.
The mountains of Vinicunca is one of the spectacular places of the mountain range of Vilcanota, awaits a natural coloration, this coloration is given by the presence of sedimentary stones in erosion. The impressive thing is how the stones have been formed to form a set of seven colors. The altitude of the mountain is approximately 5,000 meters above sea level.
Location of the Rainbow Mountain
Located in the district of Pitumarca (in the province of Canchis -region of Cusco-, in the south of the country), Ausangate is considered the most important mountain of the Andean cosmovision.
- Region: Cusco
- Province: Canchis, very close to Ausangate (sacred mountain).
- Districts: Pitumarca and Cusipata
- Coordinates: 13°52′10″S 71°18′11″
- Altitude: 5200 masl
- Mountain range: Andes
How to get to the Rainbow Mountain?
Firstly, after a 3 hour bus ride from the center of the city of Cusco, you arrive at the beautiful valley of Vinicunca, is when you start a gentle but almost permanent walk along the way, this makes it an exhausting hike, especially for those who do not have permanent practice of long walks, but what can be assured is that it leaves you exhausted.
The hike lasts about 4 hours, time to reach the next mountain and from which you can admire the Rainbow Mountain and the beautiful valley that surrounds it.
Definitely the photographs published here cannot reflect the beauty of the landscapes of the valley tour and the objective of the trip; the “Rainbow Mountain“.
Access to the 7-color mountain is prohibited for obvious reasons. That is why, as you can see in the photographs, the magnitude and beauty of the coloured mountain is obtained from a contiguous mountain.
I must inform you that at the starting point of the walk, the domain area of the Qheshiuno community, there is no accommodation.
The return trek is less difficult, but it does not stop having some difficulty, because as you will notice, the constant walk of 4 hours leaves the muscles of the lower limbs exhausted, so many rely on canes to prevent the downhill slopes can suffer some fall. The return hike could be done in approximately 2 hours, in a constant hike.
Recommendations for Rainbow Mountain
- Wear sunscreen and sunglasses. The dry season runs from March to November and is accompanied by a radiant sun, so it needs to be adequately protected.
- Bring a bottle of water or rehydration drinks for your trip.
- If necessary, use a cane for climbing or take additional horse service.
- Take sandwiches with you. All the way there are no places to buy food, so it is good to have some snacks to replenish energy.
- Raincoat or poncho.
- Hiking shoes
- Sweater or sweater for cold weather
- Walking Pants
- Hat or cap
- Toilet paper
- Standard Backpack
- Identity Document or Passport
- After taking into account these recommendations you can start your hike to the top of the wonderful Mountain of Colors.
The mountain Vinicunca or mountain of colors has become an important tourist attraction, visited by thousands of national and international tourists. With so many travelers a year, a contingency plan is needed to safeguard it so future generations can enjoy it.
Vinicunca – Road to Rainbow Mountain
The hike has sections with medium to high difficulty and you need to be in good physical condition. The villagers of the community offer, every few stretches, horse transportation service for a cost from 20 to 60 soles (6 to 18 USD) depending on the stretch to travel. maintains a good organization of the service for visitors, which includes basic infrastructure bathrooms but very useful, where you can also find garbage cans and water.
The entrance to this valley has a cost of 10 soles, with that background the locals keep clean the place and the infrastructure that I mentioned before.
Tourism Agencies in Cusco offer packages for this place at a cost of 100 soles. In fact, the main service they offer is transportation, because in reality there is no greater service to give, because you have to do the walk yourself, and as I mentioned before if the necessary physical strength leaves you, because you have the horses that the locals rent.
They usually include a cold snack, and the guide is a little out of place, because what you admire on the way is basically the beauty of the Andean landscapes, unique to this place.
The visit to this site has an addition as special as the Mountain of seven Colors, I refer to the imposing snowy Ausangate, from the place you get a wonderful and beautiful view.
Popularity of the mountain Vinicunca
Four years ago this natural beauty was opaque, hidden, distant, but exposed to the eyes of the world.
Maybe it was because years ago the whole mountain range was completely covered with snow. Without a doubt, it is the clear example of global warming that is gradually causing the melting of ice, until it disappears completely. One of our big problems in the 21st century.
The mountain of 7 colors became very famous thanks to the admiration on the part of the tourists visitors and own of the place, leaving them fascinated by its beauty.
Thanks to this, today is one of the favorite destinations for travelers, who arrive in the city of
Cusco, clear after Machu Picchu and the Sacred Valley of the Incas.