Salkantay – Machu Picchu - 6 Days

Famous for being one of the world’s best hikes, Salkantay is located at the highest peak in the Vilcabamba region at 6,271m. This trek takes you along the most breathtaking scenery you may ever witness, into the heart of the Incan empire and finally to the jewel of Cusco; the “Lost City” of Machu Picchu. The Incas abandoned the location due to the invading Spanish. They covered the pathways and remained silent even through torture and execution, which lead to the site being swallowed up and disappearing under the jungle until the early 20th century.

Day 1
Day 1 : Arrival in Cusco

Welcome to Cusco Kasia 3,400m/11,100 ft above sea level. First night is to acclimatise to the altitude and will be spent at Euro hostal.

Day 2
Day 2 : Cusco – Mollepata – Sayllpata – Soraypampa – Salkantaypampa camp

5:00am. Departure by our private transport to the town of Mollepata at 2,850m.

A beautiful 3 hour scenic journey through Izcuchaca and Limatambo, with a stop for breakfast and panoramic views of the mountain of Salkantay in the Cordillera of Vilcanota. We’ll see spectacular views of the chains of snow capped Vilcabamba, the colorful village of Mollepata and the lush Apurimac River Valley. At this point, due to the rocky road conditions, we transfer into another truck or minibus. After passing Cruzpata at 3200m then Challacancha, we arrive at our trailhead in Sayllapata at 3,600m where we meet our Arrieros horsemen and trekking staff (cook and assistants). We commence trekking with a gradual climb of 250 meters for about 2.5 hours through a pristine Andean valley before arriving to Soraypampa. There, after visiting a spectacular glacial lake, we have lunch. We continue after lunch with a gentle climb for approximately 2.5 to 3 hours through more unspoiled Andean valley to Salkantaypampa. The first camp is located at 3,950 m. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner + Camping facilities.

Meals: Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: Camping

Maximum Altitude: 3950m

Minimum Altitude: 2850m

Distance Travelled: 12 km approximately

Day 3
Day 3: Salkantaypampa – Collpapampa

After an early breakfast we start trekking a moderate climb from approx 07:00am for 3 hours to reach the Apacheta Pass at 4,590 m. From this point we can take in spectacular views of Cusco’s second highest peak, the stunning snow capped Mount Salkantay (6,264 m) and also the snow capped mountains Humantay and Huayanay, white river, small lakes and moraines. In the Apacheta Pass you can leave a piece of rock carried from the bottom as a present from you to the Apacheta. (In Inca times the walkers used to leave at the top their shoes, clothes, jewels or simply a piece of rock as an offering). There is an option to take a nice walk from the Pass for 40 minutes to see an amazing lake of Soraycocha located just off the trail.

We continue 2 hrs downhill to have lunch in Huayracmachay and then, depending on the group ability, weather and walking conditions, the guide will decide whether to camp 2-3hrs downhill walk in Rayan-niyoc at 3100m or travel a further 2km to camp at Collpapampa 2920m for experienced trekkers. Very nice camping near a natural hot spring pools. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner + Camping facilities.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: Camping

Maximum Altitude: 4590m

Minimum Altitude: 2920m

Distance Travelled: 16 km to Rayan-niyoc or 20 km to Chaullay

Day 4
Day 4: Collpapampa – Lluscamayo – La Playa

After Breakfast, we say goodbye and thanks to our arrieros, horse/donkey herders. They will get to La Playa way before us, leaving the equipment for the other staff and make their return back to Soraypampa. We start the trek 7:00am with 3 hours easy hiking from Collpapampa, where we will encounter the high Jungle zone; Ceja de Selva. Here we will see different kinds of plants, fruits, flowers, birds, etc., plus coca and banana crops. You will have time to shower in a waterfall, take amazing pictures, and with luck we can observe the famous Peruvian National Bird “Gallito de las Rocas”. We stop at Lluscamayo 2,400m for lunch and free time to rest before the 3 hour walk to our last campsite in La Playa at 2,350 m. A small village is located here with electricity and a shop with breakfast, lunch and dinner + Camping facilities.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: Camping

Maximum Altitude: 2920m.

Minimum Altitude: 2350m.

Distance Travelled: 16 km from Rayan-niyoc or 11 km from Chaullay.

Day 5
Day 5: La Playa – Lucmabamba – Llaqtapata – Hidroelectrica / Aguas Calientes

Approx 7:30am we begin our trek to the village Lucmabamba where we see the remains of an Inka trail. We follow this rising trail, from which we will see coffee, banana and passion fruit plantations and a lovely view of the Santa Teresa Valley. After climbing for 3-4 hrs to reach Llaqtapata 2,700 m we can enjoy some free time to rest and observe the mountain of Machupicchu and some of this archaeological site from afar. Then 2 hours continuous downhill to the Hydroelectric Plant at 1,870m where we have the last lunch with our staff. The cook and staff will leave us after lunch and we continue on to Aguas Calientes town with our guides. So here is our chance to say goodbye and thanks.

At 4:30pm we will take a 45 minute train journey to Aguas Calientes town 2,000m where a special dinner and a comfy bed in the Hostal Sinchi Roka await us.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner + Accommodation in Hostal Sinchi Roka. Walking poles recommended for the 2 final hours downhill. Optional evening bath in the hot springs 10 minutes walk from the town.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: Hostel

Maximum Altitude: 2350m

Minimum Altitude: 2000m

Distance Travelled: 12 km approximately

Day 6
Day 6: Aguas Calientes - Machu Picchu - Cusco

Early walk (approximately 1.5 hours uphill from Aguas Calientes) or bus for 25 minutes to the entrance of Machupicchu. There you will have a guided tour for 3 hours and plenty of free time for further exploring, photos and optional climb of the Machupicchu mountain, Temple of the Moon, or the Gate of the Sun. Generally around 1pm people walk down the steps back to Aguas Calientes for the Buffet lunch and at approx 16:00 hrs we take our return train to Ollantaytambo with bus connection arriving to Cusco city around 9:00pm.


  • Transfer from your hotel at 05:45 am
  • Private vehicle to Mollepata-Cruzpata (starting of the trek)
  • 2 person Igloo tents (large and comfortable) and a roll pad mattress
  • English speaking professional guide experienced in mountains
  • 5 kilos of your personal items ie extra clothes, sleeping bag to be carried by mules so you just need to carry your daypack with everything you will need during the day. Full-board meals 5 Breakfast, 5 Lunches, 4 Dinners.
  • First-aid kit including emergency oxygen tank
  • Horses/donkeys to carry tents, food, cooking equipment
  • Hot water for washing purposes
  • Boiled water to fill in your bottles
  • Expedition Tourist Train from Aguas Calientes to Ollanta and private transport to Cusco or bus from Hidroelectrica to Cusco, depending on the option you choose.
  • Admission Ticket to Machu Picchu
  • Guided tour in Machu Picchu, time to explore on your own.
  • Accommodation in Aguas Calientes.
  • Dining and cooking tents with tables and chairs.
  • Chef and cooking equipment and kitchen tent.

Not included

  • Sleeping bag (minus 8 ºC)
  • Energy snacks will be very useful as chocolate bars, dry fruits.
  • Dinner on the 5th day.
  • Drinks, bottled water.
  • The bus from Machupicchu to Aguas Calientes USD 12 (45 minutes down-hill walk to Aguas Calientes)
  • OPTIONAL UP-GRADE-VISTADOME Train to Cusco instead of Expedition Train for an additional USD 40 per person
  • Tips for your guides, cooks, horse herders USD 20-25 approximately. (Every staff receives a fair and decent payment upon the end of their trip, tips are optional also are a great gesture of esteem to them)

You can send your enquiry via the form below.

Salkantay – Machu Picchu