The difficulty level of the Lost City trek ranges from moderate to difficult. Factors as weather (rainy vs dry season) and your condition of fitness, vary the perception of difficulty. Basically the tour is suitable for most people provided that they do not have any health issue. Let us explain you how we can rate this trek considering different factors, so, you can be prepared for it.
The Lost City Trek, for everyone?
As we have pointed out in our article about safety in the Lost City Trek, there are health issues you have to take into account while deciding taking the trek. But in general, even people with a sedentary lifestyle can finish the trek satisfactorily. In these cases we recommend to take the 5 days trek. The difference between the 4 day and 5 day tour to the Lost City is not so significant (for a trekker) and can take you one more day of your holidays, but enough to let you finish it without being extremely tired.
Of course, there are other reasons that can help you determine if this trek is for you or not: if you do not want to be surrounded by the lushness of a rainforest, be exposed to annoying bugs or other small discomforts, you have 2 options: Take the trek to overcome these challenges 💪 or stay in a safer place 👎. In this article we will focus on the physical effort required by this trek and the factors that make it more or less difficult.
The terrain of the Ciudad Perdida – Teyuna Trail
The terrain varies across the trail from a clay-like to a rocky soil. The tight clay when wet can be slippery but the muddy ground can be heavy instead. Fortunately, as you can see, most of the trail can be walked with confidence… as long as it is dry.
How long is the Lost City trek?
In total, the round-trip Lost City trek is about 48 km (29.8 mi) long. Which means to arrive to the Lost City Archaeological Site from the starting point, it is about 24 km (14.9 mi) long. For the common 4-day Lost City trek the distances are: the first day, 8 km; the second day, 14 km; the third day, 13 km, and the fourth day 13 km, (The distances here are rounded approximations, the distance for each day depends on the campsite choosen by the guide).
Does the Ciudad Perdida trail passes through rivers you will have to cross?
Yes, you will have to cross some rivers using bridges. But there is one exception, the third day you will have to cross a river by foot twice (once, going to the Lost City and the other when returning). Most people just take off their shoes and cross it barefoot. Be careful because the river bed is pebbly. Tie your shoes to your backpack and cross the river with both hands free, this will help to keep your balance better. A good option is to bring water shoes and wear them here, or if you prefer, wear hiking sandals (we recommend to keep your foot totally covered, but it is up to you).
Lost City trail elevation
The starting point (El Mamey) is at 140 m (459 ft) above sea level. The highest point is in Lost City, at 1,200 m (3,937 mi) above sea level. Forget about any altitude sickness issue or freezing cold, on the contrary, there is a lot of humidity and the weather is hot.
If you see the elevation profile map, you will see the steeper sections: The first day, the first 5 km (3 mi) have an elevation gain of 500 m (1,640 ft). From the first day on, none of these parts exceed an elevation gain of 370 m (1,213 mi) in a 2 km (1.2 mi) long section each.
If you have a sedentary lifestyle or work out rarely, the Lost City trek will be really challenging. But do not worry if you find yourself there walking slowly, your tour guide will keep an eye on you and will help you if you need it, that is one of the advantages of the Lost City tour small groups of Mega Sierra Tour. On the other hand, if this is not the first trek you take, you work out frequently or by no known reasons you enjoy an enviable health despite doing nothing, the Lost City trek will be an adventure in the jungle where you will have the chance to work out and breath pure air at the same time. If you are a high performance athlete, it will be a walk in the park.
Despite your fitness level, you know everything worthwhile requires effort, so even tired, you will feel the joy of having lived this amazing experience, the Colombian Lost City adventure.