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Salkantay Trek & Machu Picchu

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highlights
  • Challenge yourself with the Salkantay trek
  • Travel to the Inca site of Llactapata
  • Explore the incredible Machu Picchu
  • Follow the footsteps of Hiram Bingham, who rediscovered Machu Picchu
Worried that you could not get the permit for the Inca Trail? We bring to you an opportunity to participate in an equally exhilarating journey through the Andes all the way down to Machu Picchu. Join us on this 4-day trek and travel through a variety of landscapes, ranging from snowcapped mountains to tropical forests and finally dense jungles, past small villages, towns and highland pastures, skirting herds of llamas en route.

Cross the Salkantay Pass (4650m). Enjoy the serene beauty of Humantay Lake (4200). And visit some of the most important Inca sites in Peru, including the majestic Machu Picchu. If you are planning for a trekking trip in Peru along with a visit to Machu Picchu and you want to travel off the beaten path while appreciating the beautiful and diverse nature of Peru, then this trek is for you.
Camping
Your adventure begins after we pick you up from your hotel at 05:00 am. See the white, snowcapped mountains of Apus Salkantay and Humantay through the window of the bus. Stop after the first two hours of driving in Mollepata to take advantage of its toilet facilities, souvenir shops and an optional breakfast in a restaurant.

Continue your drive to Challacancha, the starting point for this trek. Meet your support staff who will organize all of the equipment and cargo mules. Start trekking to Soraypampa (3850m) at around 09:30 am.

The first section of the trek takes you past a few deep valleys. Trek 7km in 3 hours to reach Soraypampa. Have lunch at the base camp of Mount Salkantay. After lunch and a short rest, head for the unforgettable Humantay Lake (4200m). This is a 5km round-trip which you will cover in 3 hours. See the lake's unbelievable blue-green water reflecting the mountain glaciers of Apu Humantay.

Appreciate the beauty of the dazzling night sky from your camp in Soraypampa, located high up in the middle of a glacier valley. See stars, constellations and even comets shooting across the pitch-black sky, uninterrupted by the lights and pollution of a city.
Meals
  • Lunch & Dinner
Camping
Wake up with the first rays of the sun at 05:30 am and have your breakfast. Start trekking to the highest point of the trail: the Salkantay Pass (4650m). The trek involves a 7km-long uphill ascent which you will have to cover in 3 hours. Reach the top of the pass and appreciate the spectacular views of the surrounding valleys and the imposing snowy peaks of Salkantay, Humantay, Tucarhuay and Pumasillo.

Mount Salkantay is the second highest mountain in the Cusco region and was revered by the Incas. Walk downhill for 5 kilometers before taking some rest and having your lunch. This downhill journey involves navigating a serpentine, rocky, gravel path that leads to the Huayracmachay Campsite.

After the lunch is over, start your descent to the upper parts of the Amazon rainforest. Complete the 10km downhill journey in 3 hours. Notice a dramatic change in landscape as you move from the Andes to the Amazon.

This trail is truly beautiful, with green hills and dense forests all around. End your hike in Chaullay, a village located at the altitude of 2900m.
Meals
  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Camping
Leave Chaullay at 06:00 am and hike to the small town of La Playa through the Santa Teresa Valley. See rivers, waterfalls and plantations of coffee, bananas and avocados en route. After a hearty lunch at La Playa, take a local transport to the Hidroelectrica Train Station.

If you are exhausted at this point, you may take the train from this station to Aguas Calientes (USD31 extra). If you are still eager for a hike, you can traverse the distance in three hours. There is a nice path next to the train track that goes all the way to Aguas Calientes.

This is the same trail used by the American professor Hiram Bingham who rediscovered Machu Picchu in the early 20th century. Once in Aguas Calientes, you can rest for a while in the hotel before its time for dinner. There are no cars in Aguas Calientes and the atmosphere is peaceful. In your luxury room, you will have a private bathroom, hot shower and WiFi. You can even store your luggage in the hotel while travelling to Machu Picchu.
Meals
  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Wake up early in the morning and head for Machu Picchu. You can even take a bus to this Inca citadel (at an additional cost of USD12) if you want to. Enjoy a 2-hour guided tour of this ancient city. Visit its temples, terraces, palaces, priest’s houses, the sundial, the industrial sector and the fields. Be amazed at the engineering ingenuity of the Incas who did this all without modern tools or even steel and iron to work with.

After the guided tour is over, you are free to climb Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain (be sure to book your permits in advance). You can even hike to the Sun Gate, the main entrance to Machu Picchu from the Inca Trail (you do not need a ticket for this and the round trip takes about 2 to 2.5 hours). Another option is walking to see the Incan Bridge.

Stay and enjoy this magical city for more than 7 hours before hiking down to Aguas Calientes to catch the 18:20 pm train to Ollantaytambo. A private bus will pick you up from there and drop you off at your hotel in Cusco at about 22:00 pm.
Meals
  • Breakfast
what’s included
  • Transport
  • Experienced guides
  • Personal accommodation in private campsites
  • Camping equipment
  • Entry ticket to Machu Picchu and other archeological site included on the itinerary
  • Hotel in Aguas Calientes
  • Morning tea
  • Train tickets
  • Medical kit
what's excluded
  • Sleeping bags
  • Walking sticks
  • Breakfast on the first day and lunch and dinner on the last day
  • Personal clothing and gear
  • Travel Insurance
  • Tips for our staff
Tour details
Availability Available Daily
Booking Type Instant Booking  
Duration 4 days
Tour Type Group Tour - Max 20 participants
Minimum Participants 2 people
Age Requirement 5 +
guiding method Live guide/instructor
Guide Language English
Meeting/Start Point Pick-up at your hotel or location in Cusco, Peru
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Good to know
Payment

A deposit of 20% is required when booking this tour. The remaining balance will be charged 45 days prior departure. For any bookings within 45 days of departure, the full tour amount will be charged upon booking.

Travel Insurance

We advise to take out Travel Insurance to cover for any unforeseen circumstances. Bookmundi recommends World Nomads' travel insurance.

Other Practical InformationThe Salkantay trek is a great alternative to the Inca trail trek and better suited for more adventurous trekkers who are able to handle higher altitude and longer distances. An uphill trek to reach the famous Apacheta Pass at 4650m is not too strenuous, since it is at the beginning of the trek. But it does require stamina and a little time in Cusco to acclimatize to the altitude
Cancellation20% Deposit payable upfront. Remaining balance payable 45 days prior to trip departure. Free cancellation up to 45 days prior departure, but the 20% deposit paid is non-refundable. No refund applicable within 45 days of departure.
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How our Travel Expert Service Works
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