Booking the Inca Trail
In order to walk the classic Inca Trail you need to buy a permit. If you want to walk the trail in July and August, then yes you should book well in advance as these are the busiest months, and permits sold out around April this year. The trail is actually closed in February and you might want to think twice about walking the trail from December to March as these can be really wet months in the Andes. Having said that, the first time I trekked the Inca Trail was in January and the weather was great - and I had it almost to myself!
As soon as you know your dates, I’d recommend booking the trail to avoid disappointment. Permits for next year don't go on sale until January, but we can still put in a request for you and reserve the permit as soon as it becomes available. If there are no permits left when you enquire with your dates, then why not consider the Salkantay trail which takes you to Machu Picchu but through the back door - you don’t need a permit and there are several other advantages including fewer tourists and the possibility to stay in mountain lodges along the way instead of camping. This can also be busy in July and August though.