- Hikers will need at least two changes of clothing, plus shorts and short-sleeved shirts during the day. Night-time wear includes a wool cap, scarf, gloves, sweater and a down jacket or similar, plus a raincoat in case it rains.
- Wool socks and hiking boots.
- A small rucksack, sleeping bag, foam mattress and a large rucksack for personal gear. Hikers walking the trail independently will need a tent.
- Water bottles, purifying tablets, flashlight, matches and trash bags.
- Sunglasses, hat, sunscreen, bug repellent, first-aid kit, swimming trunks, soap and other items for personal hygiene.
- Independent hikers should remember to bring US$20 to cover the cost of entry to the Inca Trail.
- The best time to walk the Inca Trail is from May to October. The rest of the year, however, offers the advantage that there are less tourists due to the fact the climate is damp, cold and constantly raining. Some parts of the trail become slippery and dangerous.
- Walkers will need to get used to the high altitude a day or two before starting the trek. To get used to the weather, its is advisable to get some rest the first day, eat light meals and drink plenty of liquids, especially coca leaf tea, which is good against high altitude sickness and for digestion.
- Bring plenty of lemon sweets. These help fend off dehydration and high altitude sickness.
- Most visitors out to walk the Inca Trail pay for a package tour from tour operators, which provide everything one needs for the hike a cook, bearers and a professional guide.
- Most of the trail is fairly safe, but it still should not be taken lightly. Some stretches of the trail wind past high cliffs. Hikers wanting to get a look at something should stop first, as those dizzy from the altitude could stumble and fall. Do not stray from the trail it is easy to get lost or fall off the trail.
- It is prohibited to camp inside archaeological monuments. Likewise, do not litter or damage the archaeological complexes in the area.
- It is not recommendable to take along alcoholic drinks.
- Campfires are forbidden, especially in the dry season, as these can cause a forest fire in the area and damage the eco-system.
It is forbidden to extract or buy any species of flora and/or fauna from the area.