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Guide to visit the Mountain of the 7 Colors
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Complete guide to visit the Mountain of the 7 Colors

To visit the Vinincunca or the Mountain of 7 Colors it is necessary to travel (on your own or with a tour) to the town of Cusipata. Then the trip continues by trail to the community of Phulawasipata. From there you can personally purchase the entrance ticket. Then begins a 6-kilometer walk to the so-called ‘Cerro Colorado’, one of the best attractions in Peru along with Machu Picchu.



Which is cheaper? Go to Vinicunca with a tour or on your own?
Although it seems that going on your own is always cheaper, this is not the case in the case of the visit to the 7 Colors Mountain. This is because the mountain is located in a remote place where few public transports arrive. So if you go on your own you will have to get a taxi. This is more expensive, so doing the tour is the cheapest way to get to know the Vinicunca. In addition, this tour is one of the cheapest in Cusco.


Vinicunca

Mountain of 7 Colors

What to see on a tour to the Mountain of 7 Colors?

The Mountain of the 7 Colors (also known as Vinincunca or Cerro Colorado) is a natural attraction located in Cusco.

Its main tourist attraction is its hillsides and summits, which acquired different colors and shades due to the thaw and erosion of a diversity of minerals formed millions of years ago.

To reach this magical mountain you must walk 6 kilometers from the Pampachiri community (100 kilometers away from the city of Cusco, approximately). Due to its high altitude location (5,200 meters above sea level / 17,060 feet), arriving requires regular physical effort.

This magical mountain was on the route that leads to the snowy Ausangate. Due to the photographs that tourists took there, this attraction began to gain popularity in the world.

The Mountain of the 7 Colors has shades of pink, yellow, green, purple, red, golden, brown and its nuances.


Map – Mountain 7 Colors in quad bike


How to buy a ticket to the Mountain of 7 Colors?

Tickets to the Mountain of 7 Colors are not reserved online. Nor can they be obtained at an agency in Lima or Cusco. The only way to buy a ticket is by traveling directly to the control booth in the community of Phulawasipata,at the foot of the snowy Ausangate.

In the Phulawasipata community there is a control booth that sells tickets to this natural tourist attraction. The distance to Cerro Colorado is approximately 6 kilometers. In the place there are also locals offering to take them on horseback to the destination.


How to get to the Mountain of 7 Colors on your own?

To get to Pampachiri and buy the entrance to the Mountain of the 7 Colors you must follow the following steps:

  • Hire a taxi or take a bus from the city of Cusco to the town of Cusipata. Buses leave from the Closed Colosseum on Huayruropata Avenue (cost 5 soles). The trip takes approximately 2 hours.
  • Once in the town of Cusipata, you can rest before continuing the trip to the Phulawasipata community. There are ‘collective’ taxis that do this service (cost 10 soles). The trip takes about 1 hour.
  • In the Phulawasipata community you can buy tickets to the Mountain of 7 Colors. You can also hire a horse or buy products before the walk.
  • The hike to Cerro Colorado lasts 2 hours depending on the physical condition of the visitor. The ascent is difficult but worth it.

How much does the entrance to the Mountain of the 7 Colors cost?

The entrance to the Mountain of the 7 Colors has a cost for Peruvians and another for foreigners. Payment is with an identity document or passport.

Ticket price Mountain of the 7 Colors:

Price in soles (S /.)Price in dollars ($)
National tourist (Peru)S /. 154 USD
Foreign touristS /. 257 USD

* Tickets are purchased in the same Mountain of 7 Colors.


How much does the trip to Vinicunca cost on its own?

Traveling to the Mountain of 7 Colors is easier and cheaper than it seems. The expenses include: food, transportation, tickets and snacks.

Trip to Vinicunca on your ownPrice in soles (S /.)Price in dollars ($)
Outbound trip: Cusco – CusipataS /. 52 USD
Outbound trip: Cusipata – PhulawasipataS /. 103 USD
Return trip Cusipata-CuscoS /. 103 USD
Local breakfastS /. 52 USD
Local lunchS /. 103 USD
Foreign entranceS /. 256 USD
Horse riding *S /. 100$ 31
SnacksS /. 103 USD
Total costS /. 18556 USD

* The transfer on horseback to the mountain is optional.


How to visit the Mountain of 7 Colors with tour?

Not sure about visiting Cerro Colorado on your own? You can also do it by hiring the services of a tour.

On the internet or in the Historic Center of Cusco there are several tourism agencies that offer the 1-day tour to the Mountain of 7 Colors.

Tours include direct transportation to the control booth, food, tickets and tour guides. The start of the tour is with the pick up of each tourist at the door of your hotel.

Tours to Cerro Colorado begin in the city of Cusco at dawn (3 or 4 am) and conclude at night in the same place (7 or 8 pm).

Tourists doing the trek to the Mountain of the 7 colors
People doing the trek to the Mountain of the 7 colors

 

Don’t you feel in good physical condition to walk the 6 kilometers to the Mountain of the 7 Colors? You can choose to ride a horse by hiring one with the locals.


How much does a tour to the Mountain of 7 Colors cost?

The 7 Colors Mountain tours vary from $ 35 to $ 100. Prices vary according to the quality of services. However, all provide the experience of knowing Cerro Colorado.

Average price tour to VinicuncaPrice in soles (S /.)Price in dollars ($)
Tour to Vinicunca (transport, food and guide)S /. 21065 USD
EntryS /. 103 USD
Horse riding *S /. 100$ 31
SnacksS /. 103 USD
Total costS /. 330$ 102

* The transfer on horseback to the mountain is optional.


What does a tour to Vinicunca include?

Most agencies include these services:

It includes:

  • Transportation (round trip).
  • Food (breakfast and lunch).
  • Tickets.
  • Tour guide.

Does not include:

  • Horse riding
  • Walking sticks
  • Rain poncho
  • Snacks

Some tours to the Rainbow Mountain include a visit to the Red Valley of Pitumarca, another new attraction located very close to Vinicunca.


What to do in the Mountain of 7 Colors?

The Mountain of the 7 Colors offers one of the most incredible natural landscapes in the world. These are some of the things to do in this magical place:

  • Enjoy the characteristic fauna of the high Andean landscapes such as llamas, vicunas, alpacas, vizcachas, condors and more.
  • Live one of the most memorable extreme adventures. Cerro Colorado is above 5,000 meters above sea level.
  • Get to know the lifestyle of the communities that inhabit the most extreme places in the Peruvian Andes.
  • Take a picture at Vinincunca, one of the 100 places to visit before you die according to National Geographic.

When is the best time to visit the Mountain of the 7 Colors?

Some tourists return from Vinincunca with the disappointment of seeing it covered with snow without the colors and nuances that characterize it.

This happens mainly during the rainy season (from November to March). During those months, river precipitation and weather cause the Mountain of the 7 Colors to be covered with snow.

The best time to visit this natural attraction is in the dry season (from April to October). In those months the sky is clear, the rains are less frequent and the Vinincunca shows its best colors.


Tourist in the Mountain 7 colors
Tourist in the Mountain of the 7 Colors

What to take on a tour to the Mountain of 7 Colors?

The weather in the Mountain of 7 Colors is cold. Temperatures can reach 0 ℃ at night. During the day, the sun can wear away the visitor. At the top of the summit, the wind runs strong.

It is recommended to bring:

  • Sunscreen.
  • Poncho in case of rain.
  • Cap, hat, gloves, sunglasses.
  • Bottle with water
  • Windbreaker, trekking pants.
  • Ideal trekking shoes.
  • Snacks, camera, documents, extra money.

Recommendations to buy a ticket to the Mountain of the 7 Colors

  • If you plan to buy the ticket on your own on Cerro Colorado, start the trip very early in the city of Cusco (3 or 4 am).
  • If you plan to visit the Mountain of 7 Colors with a tour, verify that you have the services you want: food, tickets, bilingual guide, horseback riding, etc.
  • The services on horseback to ascend to the Mountain of the 7 Colors have an average cost of 100 S /. per person. The payment is to the residents who offer this service in the place.
  • Check the weather in the Mountain of 7 Colors before starting the trip either on your own or with a tour.

Frequently asked questions about the visit to the Mountain of 7 Colors

These are the most frequent questions asked by tourists on the internet about the trip to the mountain of 7 colors:

  • 1) Where is the mountain of the 7 colors?

    This famous mountain is at the foot of the snowy Ausangate, near the community of Phulawasipata in the district of Cusipata – Cusco.

  • 2) Why is the mountain of 7 colors?

    The mountain terrain is full of minerals formed thousands of years ago. This causes the visibility of a floor full of colors such as: yellow, pink, green, purple, red, gold, brown and its shades.

  • 3) What is the best time to visit the mountain of 7 colors?

    For many, the dry season, from April to October, is the best time to visit this destination. The days are sunny and suitable for walks. Even so, in the 7-color mountain, hail can cover the territory, causing the landscape to not be well appreciated.

  • 4) How is the weather in the mountain of 7 colors?

    The weather is cold. In the mornings the temperature can reach 17ºC. In the afternoons the temperature drops to 7ºC. At night and early morning it can drop to 0ºC. and even less.

  • 5) How did the seven colors mountain originate?

    The 7-color mountain originated millions of years ago as a result of the abundance of minerals in the place. Plate tectonics then uplifted these mineral sediments. Finally, the ice gave way to the increasingly high temperatures, revealing the colors of the mountain.

  • 6) What does Vinicunca mean?

    This name comes from two Quechua words. ‘Wini’ means black stones (abundant in the place). ‘Kunka’ means pass-through or bottle-shaped neck. This due to the shape of the mountain.

  • 7) How old is the mountain of the 7 colors?

    The mountain was formed millions of years ago. However, the discovery of its colors occurred only at the beginning of the 21st century.

  • 8) How do you get to Vinicunca?

    To go to Vinicunca you must take a transport to the town of Cusipata. Then with another transport to the Phulawasipata camp. Finally, there is a walk of approximately 6 kilometers to the 7-color mountain.

  • 9) When was the 7-color mountain discovered?

    The mountain became popular in 2015 after the photos taken by tourists who made the hiking route to the snowy Ausangate.

  • 10) How much does a tour cost?

    Tours to the 7-color mountain vary from 30 to 65 dollars, depending on the tourism agency you choose.



Advice from people who have been there

Rainbow Mountain Hike

Carlos Y. By: Carlos Y.

“horse ride“

“At the beginning I didn't know anything but with the help of the agency I was able to plan my trip, we went by bus to a town then I was encouraged to hire a horse for the ascent, it really was an extraordinary ride“


 

By Ticket Machu Picchu – Last updated, May 10, 2023