7 Days / 6 Nights
Of all the various treks to Machu Picchu, few can compete with the Salkantay Trek in terms of scenery. It’s a spectacular route, passing through jungles and mountain passes, and dotted with azure lagoons. And at the heart of the trek is Salkantay Mountain, which at 6,271 m (20,574 ft) is the highest peak in the Vilcabamba mountain range and the twelfth-highest in Peru.
Our Salkantay & Inca trail hike to Machu Picchu traverses the flank of this sacred mountain, offering some of the most awe-inspiring views in Peru. It’s one of the more challenging alternative routes to Machu Picchu, simply because of the high altitude. Unlike the more standard five-day Salkantay trek, this route goes on to join the classic Inca Trail, giving you the best of both worlds: the stunning scenery of Salkantay, and the Inca ruins found along the classic Inca Trail.
Our Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu begins when we pick you up from your hotel in Cusco at around 5 a.m. We’ll then travel in our private bus to Mollepata, which takes about four hours. It’s a lengthy trip, but it’s needed to get out to this relatively remote region. On the way, you’ll be able to enjoy the wonderful scenery, including views of the Izcuchaca and Limatambo mountain ranges.
Eventually we’ll arrive at the colorful Andean village ...
We’ll wake early on Day 2 and have a hearty breakfast, then we will set off along a gentle uphill trail to Salkantaypampa. As we go, we’ll have wonderful views of the beautiful but imposing Salkantay Mountain in front. As we ascend along the tail, we will stop along the way to enjoy the outstanding mountain scenery of the Vilcabamba range. After lunch, we will gradually continue ascending to our campsite in Pampa Japonesa.
Hiking Time: 7 hours...
Today we will rise early for breakfast before setting off to conquer the last mountain pass on our Salkantay section of the trek. This pass, called Incachiriasca, sits at 5,338 m (17,513 ft). It’s a challenging trek to the top, but we’ll take it nice and slow and you can stop for a breather and to enjoy the views whenever you like. From here, the views of Salkantay are awe-inspiring.
After reaching the pass and stopping for a quick rest, we will make our way ...
Day 4 begins with a steep three-hour trek downhill to the Inca ruins of Inkaracay, also known as Paucarcancha. We’ll explore this small but fascinating Inca site before continuing our trek down to the small village of Huayllabamba. It is here that our Salkantay trek joins with the classic Inca Trail. After making a lunch stop, we will head up to our campsite, through a steep but very scenic climb. Our campsite tonight is at Ayapata.
Hiking Time: 7 hours<...
It’s another early start as our cooks prepare a hearty breakfast to get your energy levels up, and you’re going to need it. Today we join the classic Inca Trail on what is generally regarded as the toughest section, and we have a steep ascent ahead of us.
After a few hours trekking we will reach the highest pass on the trail, known as Abra de Warrmihuañusca, or Dead Woman's Pass, at an elevation of 4,200 m (13,779 ft). It’s a challenging trek to ...
After another energy-filled breakfast, we’ll set off on a relatively gentle uphill trek to our first stop of the day: the archaeological site of Phuyupatamarca, "The City Above the Clouds," located at around 3,680 m. This enchanting Inca ruin features terraced slopes and five small stone baths that contain constant fresh running water during the wet season. From here, we have incredible views of snow-capped peaks in the distance, including Salkantay and Veronica.
Today we want to get moving as soon as possible, so we’ll wake at 4:30 a.m., have breakfast and then set off along the last section of the trail. We’ll walk for about 1.5 hours until we reach Intipunku (the “Sun Gate”), arriving before the first rays of the sun reach Machu Picchu. From the Sun Gate, at around 7 a.m., we can watch as the sun spills across the landscape, slowly revealing Machu Picchu and our first sighting of our final destination.
These poles are designed to help you endure long treks into rugged, remote areas with a heavy pack. If you need a little extra support when walking, an adjustable folding walking stick is ideal. It has an aluminium body with plastic handles and base, it folds away neatly for easy storage when not in use.
Inca Trail Porters Protection Law No. 27607(Dec 6th 2001). Decreed Laws Numbers 19990 and 25897 Article 3 Conditions of work:
QUESTION IS, WHO ARE THE PORTERS?
Porters are indigenous Cusqueñian people who have lived in Cusco, at 4,000 meters high, all of their lives relying on the land of the Andes. Due to economic problems, it is important for these local indigenous people to continue working in the mountains they know so well, rather than give up their jobs in the country to move to the city. They prefer to stay in their local villages and support the education of their children by working as porters on tours.
Sadly, many tour operators don't give them the recognition they deserve. Often tour operators do NOT provide porters with adequate clothing or gear for carrying things while paying them very low salaries. Because of this, you will see thirsty, hungry porters with a low morale along the Inca Trail. Our government has created the Law of the Porter, which requires tour agencies to treat porters better and provide necessary resources for them, but sadly, many of these regulations are not met. Please make sure that the agency you book through respects the Porter Law and be sure to ask for proof of this. Otherwise you could be contributing to the ill treatment of these hard-working porters.
Those in search of a true once-in-a-lifetime experience can choose to make their pilgrimage to Machu Picchu in comfort with our sure-footed horses as their ideal traveling partners. Guests on horseback may choose to use along a uncrowded route that led early Incas to the great city of Machu Picchu.
Duffle bags for packing on cargo horses on relevant trips
Experienced Quechua Wranglers (muleteers) to look after all stock
No include Riding helmets (you may bring your own if you want)
Note that our sleeping bags are feather for those that are allergic
Now featuring our exclusive Atmos Foam to further reduce weight and boost compressibility, the ProLite is the lightest and most compact three-season mattress available. Self-inflation keeps set-up super-easy and its die-cut foam packs small, easily fitting inside the most ultralight packs. It's ideal for high-mileage, high-speed journeys where every gram counts. Stuff sack included.