Why Is Rainbow Mountain in Peru Colorful

by | Sep 8, 2022 | Ausangate Trek | 0 comments

Hidden gems in Peru

Colorful Rainbow Mountain Peru Travel article, By Tour Leaders Peru, will explain why Rainbow Mountain in Peru is Colorful?, where is located, and its Elevation, please continue reading Thing to Know Before visiting Rainbow Mountain in Peru

When everyone is traveling through the Cordillera of the Andes mainly in Peru Country. Near the south of Cusco, travelers enter through varied landscapes with great energy attracted by the mountains.

From the southern valley of Cusco to the heights of Cusipata village. The paths that run are mountain ranges and different villages. Behind the snow cape of Ausangate is one of the most beautiful known since 2015 as the rainbow mountain. One of the most photographed by tourists from different parts of the world.

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The Question on Everyone’s Mind: Why is Rainbow Mountain in Peru So Colorful?

There are a few reasons why Mountain Rainbow in Peru is so colorful. First, the mountain is made up of different minerals that each have a different color. For example, there is red clay, green carbonate, and white quartz. When these minerals are combined, they create the colorful effect that we see.

Another reason for the mountain’s color is that it is located near a desert. The desert climate helps to intensify the colors of the minerals.

Lastly, the time of day also affects how colorful Rainbow Mountain appears. The mountain is usually most vibrant early in the morning or late in the afternoon when the sun is at a low angle.

All of these factors come together to create the beautiful and unique colors of Rainbow Mountain in Peru.

Red Valley Cusco Peru
Vinicunca’s Original name or this colored strata mountain

Rainbow Mountain Location

Vinicunca is the Local name of Cerro de Colorado in Spanish. are a mountain chain that borders the Red Valley and the Cusipata Valley, a Quechua village located 10 km from the city of Cusco.

This hill is named for its peculiar rainbow colors that are reflected very early, with the first rays of the sun, and that is appreciated in the great pictures mountain of Vinicunca that varies from shades of orange, gray, and red oxide to violet.

This natural rainbow is the product of a complex geological history that includes marine, lake, and river sediments raised by tectonic movements.

Morphology and How Did Rainbow Mountain Get Its Colors?

It has large geomorphological units and materials from continental and marine environments ranging from the Precambrian (more than 600 million years ago) to the most recent deposits of the Quaternary.

Earthy brown color: fanglomerate composed of rock with manganese belonging to the Quaternary. Age: 1 to 2 million years.
Red color: composed of clays (iron) and clays belonging to the upper Tertiary. Age: 3 to 4 million years.
Green color: composed of Filitas substance, copper oxide slates. Age: 600 million years.
Pink color: composed of red clay, Fangolitas Substance (mud), and Airlines Substance (sand). Estimated age: 3 to 4 million years.

White color: limestone or limestone, white quality. Age: 400 million years.
Brown, brown, and purple colors: Composed of lead and burning marshes, rich in calcium carbonate. Age: 80 to 90 million years.
Mustard yellow color: limestone with sulfur. Age: 80 to 90 million years

Colorful Rainbow Mountain

Rainbow Mountain Trail, Tours, and Distance

From Cusco, there are Rainbow mountain tours every day, which is a circuit that takes about one day. The walking distance from the beginning of the hike until the top including the Red Valley is about a 6-hour walk.

To appreciate in all its splendor the seven colors mountain You’ll have to arrive early and wait for the first rays of the sun reflected in the multicolored Andean mountain range, from the Cusipata village.

According to AllTrails, the out-and-back trail clocks in at 6.2 miles in total and it takes an average of three-and-a-half hours to complete. Don’t believe us on the altitude? Here’s what a few people have to say in the AllTrails comments:

“Altitude was no joke! Had to stop every half kilometer to catch our breath even though it was relatively flat.

The last kilometer to the peak is very steep and brutal,” one hiker wrote. “The altitude is very tough,” another added. “I recommend taking medicine beforehand. I took the official acetazolamide before going and I still had symptoms. This is a quick hike but tough because of the altitude.”


Challenge yourself and get a great payoff on this 16-hour day trip to Rainbow Mountain (Vinicunca Mountain) from Cusco.

This little-known spot in Peru is not only a must-see because of its naturally colorful mountains, but it’s also the perfect location to take trip pics.
Go on an exciting 3- to 4-hour hike to make your way to where the mountains are.
Plus, enjoy breakfast, snacks, lunch, and round-trip transport on this trip.

A 16-hour day trip to Rainbow Mountain (Vinicunca Mountain) from Cusco Small-group tour limited to 8 people ensures a personalized experience with your guide.
Go on a 3- to 4-hour hike until you reach 16,500 feet (5029 meters) above sea level Spend time admiring the beautiful mountains, well known for their colorfully lined landscape.
Enjoy breakfast, snacks, and lunch.
On this day trip, Cusco hotel pickup and drop-off are included

Read more about Full-Day Tour to The Rainbow Mountain from Cusco 2020


In conclusion, Rainbow Mountain in Peru is so colorful because of the different minerals that make up the mountain, the desert climate that intensifies the colors, and the time of day.

All of these factors come together to create the beautiful and unique colors of Rainbow Mountain in Peru.


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Cesar Conde

I’m Cesar Conde, owner of Tour Leaders Peru & Travel Advisor and my other side job is Nomadic Digital. I share my own amazing Tour Experiences, travel stories, guides, and itineraries for travelers like you and me!


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