Vinicunca Rainbow Mountain: the Mountain of 7 Colors near Cusco

rainbow mountain information

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Have you heard of Peru? It is a South American country of highlands, coast and jungle, where you can enjoy the Inca culture, monuments and buildings. It is the country where visit Machu Picchu and Sacred Valley, yes, but also where travel the Vinicunca Mountain. Don’t know what we’re talking about? Don’t worry, we’ll tell you all the information about the magnificent Vinicunca Rainbow Mountain.

What is Vinicunca Rainbow Mountain

As its name suggests, it is a mountain and has 7 colors, but do not imagine the classic brown tones because they are intense colors: fuchsia, turquoise, lavender and gold. These colors stain its slopes forming perfectly defined stripes. As you can hear, it is the very rainbow made mountain.

Tourist in the Vinicunca Rainbow Mountain


Why is Vinicunca Rainbow Mountain colorful?

Don’t think it’s because someone with a lot of time decided to give it color. Vinicunca Mountain owes its appearance to the composition of its layers. Let’s start at the beginning: over the years, sediments of different sizes were deposited, delimiting the strips that you see today.

The sediment strips have a distinct mineralogical formation. The oxidation of the minerals that make up the strips due to humidity and erosion gave rise to the colors that characterize the 7 Colors Mountain today. All this translates into it being one of the most impressive places in Cusco.

Height of the 7 Colors Mountain

The Vinicunca Rainbow Mountain is at an altitude of 5.200 meters above sea level. You may be able to get rid of the symptoms of altitude sickness if you follow the recommendations and exercise caution, but don’t think you’ll be able to get rid of the awe-inspiring effect of the indescribable scenery so easily.

Where is Vinicunca Rainbow Mountain

Let’s continue with the Vinicunca Rainbow information. This natural wonder is about 140 kilometers southeast of Cusco, which translates into 3 hours to which you have to add the trekking of the same 1 or 2 hours. Do not be afraid of these data, they are just numbers! It is the background scenery during the Ausangate trek through the heart of the Andes of Peru and after visiting the city of Cusco you can’t miss it.

How to get to Vinicunca

The easiest way to get there if you do not have a tour that will facilitate the process is to take the bus from Cusco to Sicuani. The ticket costs about 5 soles and the trip takes about 2 hours. You must get off at the Cusipata stop and from there look for a collective transport that will take you to Phulawasipata for approximately 15 soles.

After an hour, and after paying 10 soles, you can begin the ascent. It is important to note that this option is only available in the morning, so time is limited.

Another way to get there is to stop in Pitumarca. It is the same bus to Sicuani, but it takes 3 hours to reach the destination and costs 7 soles. Once in Pitumarca it is a matter of looking for a cab to take you to Pampachiri, from where to start the trek. The ascent can be done on foot or on horseback that brings you closer to the best points where you can see the colors.

Horse in the Vinicunca Mountain

Weather at 7 Colors Mountain

In general, the climate in the higher elevations of Peru is cold, and rain and wind can contribute to intensify the sensation. The best time to go to the 7 Colors Mountain is during the dry season (April to October) to at least avoid rainfall.

The Mountain of the 7 Colors has become one of the biggest tourist attractions in Cusco, Peru and South America in general. It’s a magnificent place you can’t miss because your Instagram account needs some color, don’t you agree?


Journalist, nomad and adventurer. Paula would never say no to a camping trip and is an expert in setting up a tent in less than 10 seconds.

Besides that, she loves to dance and maybe that's why she loves Latin America so much. One of her best trips was to Argentina, but she has many more destinations behind her, which she talks about in this blog.

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