But let's face it-not everyone who wants to hike to Machu Picchu is a rugged outdoorsman. Some of us want to tackle the Machu Picchu trek while maintaining a reasonable amount of comfort. If you fall in the category (and even if you don't), here are 5 things to pack to make your Machu Picchu trekking experience as comfortable as possible.
1. Your own sleeping bag. Although you can rent a sleeping bag in Cuzco, it is impossible to guarantee its quality ahead of time. Avoid risking a low quality sleeping bag by bringing your own from home. If you must rent, consider bring a silk bag liner or lightweight sheet to put inside the bag to make it more comfortable. A sleeping pad will also drastically increase your comfort level.
2. Extra socks. You can never have enough socks. Many trekkers swear by the double sock rule, while other say socks and sandals work best. And of course, you don't want to wear dirty, sweaty sock to sleep in, do you? No matter how you look at it, extra socks will make your hike more comfortable. Have a pair just for sleeping and a backup pair in case any of your other pairs get wet - because few things are worse than wearing wet socks.
3. Personal toiletries. Even if you're only taking the 4-day Inca Trail, there are still some necessities you need to think of, and toilet paper probably tops the list. There is a slim chance you might find some at the campgrounds, but it is always better to be prepared. Small plastic bags are extremely useful as well, along with a small container of hand sanitizer. There is also one campground with a shower, so you can choose to bring small containers of soap and shampoo if you want.
4. Flashlight. Unless you plan on falling asleep as soon as the sun goes down (and you might after a full day of hiking!) you'll want a flashlight for nighttime activities. From finding the bathroom to playing cards in your tent, a flashlight is a handy thing to have.
5. Personal bathroom tent. Yes! It is true! You can hire a little bathroom tent and have a porter carry it along the trail with you. While you may not call it luxurious, if you're traveling with a group that wants to split the cost of a clean and personal bathroom, this is one way to definitely up the comfort factor of your Machu Picchu trek.