Discovering the Red Valley Peru

The Red Valley is one of the things to do in Cusco you don’t want to miss. This magnificent red canyon is gaining popularity among the local and foreign tourists because of its vibrant colors!

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red valley trek

During the high season, the Rainbow Mountain receives more than 1,500 visitors per day, becoming one of the most popular destinations in Cusco. However, the Vinicunca mountain is not the only tourist attraction inside this national park.

Currently, the Red Valley is everyone’s favorite destination while visiting the Vinicunca Mountain. Its bright colors will leave you astonished, and it’s worth mentioning that you probably won’t see anything like it again!

Why are the Rainbow Mountain and Red Valley so Colorful?

The sediment of minerals creates the particular coloration found in the Rainbow Mountain and Red Valley.

These painted mountains in Peru are like nothing you’ve seen before. The Red Valley has an incredible red color due to the iron-rich soil that covers almost the whole area. In this natural wonder, you’ll find bright red and green tones throughout the year.

red valley rock

Where is the Red Valley Peru?

Located 3 hours away from Cusco city, the Red Valley lies behind the Rainbow Mountain in the district of Pitumarca.

The Red Valley elevation is 5,200 meters above sea level. That is why we recommend taking at least two days to acclimatize before committing to this adventure. The better you feel, the most you will enjoy of this dream-like scenery.

This remarkable work of nature is located between 20 to 30 minutes away from the Rainbow Mountain. The trek to the Red Valley is not so hard but that will depend on your physical condition and how your body reacts to the altitude.

Visiting the Rainbow Mountain and Red Valley is something that you can complete on a full-day tour. Bear in mind that for entering to the Red Valley you will need to pay an entrance fee to the communities.

Andean woman with her llama

When is the Best Time to Visit the Red Valley?

The best time to visit the Rainbow Mountain and Red Valley is between March and November. The weather changes drastically in this particular region. Between January and February, you can expect heavy rain and snowfall.

The Red Valley is expected to have low temperatures throughout the year. Even if it is sunny, you will need to prepare yourself for the cold temperatures.

What to Bring to the Red Valley?

According to the weather conditions and the trail, here are some recommendations that will help you optimize your experience through the Red Valley:

  • Be prepared for the cold in warm layers! Something that you can easily take off in case it gets warm.
  • Protect yourself from the sun by applying sunscreen every 30-45 minutes.
  • Remember to wear sunglasses and a sun hat.
  • Keep yourself hydrated, bring at least a liter of water with you!
  • Use trekking or running shoes, whatever makes you feel comfortable while walking up to the Rainbow Mountain or the Red Valley.
  • Make sure to have a light but healthy breakfast before starting the trek.
  • Bring coca leaves to prevent altitude sickness.

red valley equipment

For more information, check out our guide for what to bring to this trek.

Red Valley Facts

  • The Red Valley and Rainbow Mountain lands are part of the Chillihuani and Pampachiri communities.
  • The incredible red color is produced by iron and clays found on the surface.
  • Farmers take their llamas and alpacas to these fields, and if you’re lucky enough, you could take a picture with them!
  • The Red Valley’s vivid colors will make the perfect Instagram picture, don’t miss this opportunity!

The visit to the Rainbow Mountain won’t be complete without seeing the Red Valley landscape. This exceptional location will make of your trip a remarkable memory of your time in Peru. For photography enthusiasts and nature lovers, this is the perfect travel destination inside the Cusco region.

We highly recommend Rainbow Mountain Travels to visit this colorful mountain since with them, you can combine the Red Valley and Rainbow Mountain in a day tour, they also include breakfast, lunch, and assistance along the way. Make sure to know everything about this famous trek while you’re here!