The Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu is a spectacular Andean hike, complete with high peaks, snowcapped mountains and tropical valleys. This trek is one of the 25 Best New Treks in the world according to National Geographic Magazine and is a cutting edge experience for adventurous travelers looking for a little more privacy and authenticity, with no limitation on spaces or permits.
The Quechua and pre-Inca people named this mountain Apu Salkantay (Savage mountain), is located in the Vilcabamba mountain range at an altitude of 6,271m (20,574 ft). Besides, Salkantay is Mt. Humantay, a snowcapped mountain at 5,917m (19,412 ft).
Salkantay trek is a great alternative to the Inca Trail, offers a perfect mix of trekking, culture and nature. But is not the only alternative trek to get to Machu Picchu. We also offer the: Inca Jungle Trail, Lares Trek.
Spend 5 days on the Salkantay trek to visit one of the most beautiful new wonders of the world.
Walk the Salkantay trek and observe diverse ecosystems, from the Andes, highlands and to the high jungle.
Enjoy stunning views of the glacially shaped Salkantay and the magnificent high jungle.
Hike up the Salkantay trek Highlands, after finishing the trek it’s time to relax at the Cocalmayo hot springs.
Day 01: Cusco – Mollepata – Soraypampa
At 05:00 am we will pick you up from your hotel and take a 2 hour bus ride to Mollepata (2,800m, / 9,116 feet). This is a beautifully scenic drive through the valley of Limatambo. Upon reaching Mollepata we will have breakfast, then head to Markokasa. Here we will meet with the muleteers and mules to begin our Salkantay trek towards Soraypampa (3,825m / 12,371 ft), about a 4 hour walk. We’ll have lunch once we get there, and then continue to Humantay Lake, about 2 hours up and 2 hours back down to Soraypampa. You’ll have your first view of the sacred mountain Salkantay(6,271m / 20,574ft) along the way. We’ll have dinner and spend the night in Soraypampa.
Day 02: Soraypampa – Wayracpampa – Colpany
Another early start today, with breakfast at 05:00am. We’ll then begin a roughly 2 hour hike to Salkantay Pass (4,650m / 15,091ft). We’ll stop to catch our breath at the top and bask in the glaciated presence of Salkantay (6,271m / 20,574ft) and other snow-capped peaks like Humantay and Tucarhuay, possibly even seeing avalanches careening down them. After spending some time taking in this beautiful landscape, will start to our descent to the high jungle, passing through barren windswept plains and catching glimpses of the Cordillera Vilcabamba mountains along the way. We will finish the second day of the Salkantay Trek at the Colpapampa camp site (2,900m / 9,514ft), where the vegetation and wildlife will be more abundant. Dinner & Overnight.
Day 3: Colpapampa – Playa Sawayaco – Santa Teres
After breakfast, we will begin our walk at 6:30am through the high Inca Jungle. We will shortly cross the Lluskamayo River, plus a number of small streams. We will pass through valleys and observe the exotic flora and fauna of the region, plus amazing view of waterfalls. We will stop in Playa – Sawayaco (2,250m / 7,381ft) for lunch. After, we will take a van to Santa Teresa (1,900m / 6,233ft). We’ll set up camp here and later relax into the Cocalmayo hot springs.
Day 04: Santa Teresa – Hidroelectrica – Aguas Calientes
After breakfast we will begin the trek into the Santa Teresa valley to Hidroeléctrica (the hydroelectric power station), our lunch spot. We will continue with our walk, except now with a view of Machu Picchu and the principal Inca sacred mountains in the area: Huayna Picchu, Putucusi and Salkantay again.
After of 6 hours of walking, we will arrive in the town of Aguas Calientes (1,900m / 6,233 ft), where we will spend the night.
We will wake up at 4:00am (yes – another early start. Trust us: it’s better this way). Then we will start to walk up to Machu Picchu citadel. When we arrive at the check point, we’ll regroup and start the 2 hour guided tour. Afterwards, you will have free time to climb Huayna Picchu (additional fee and prior reservation required) and visit the different places recommended by our guide, such as the Inti Punku (Sun Gate) and Machu Picchu Mountain. At last, we will return by train to Ollantaytambo and then by bus to Cusco.
Pick up form the Hotel
Bus from Cusco to Mollepata
Muleteers and mules
Tent, mattresses, kitchen and dining equipment
4 breakfast / 4 lunch / 4 dinner
Transport from Playa sahuayaco to Santa teresa
One night accomodation in Aguas Calientes
Train tickets from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo
Entrance fee of Machu Picchu
Professional guide (English & Spanish-speaking)
First aid kit and oxygen bottle
Return bus from Ollantaytambo to Cusco
Last lunch in Aguas Calientes
Min 2 – Max 15
What to bring (We recommend):
Walk shoes or boots
Rain jacket, hat, sunblock, sunglasses
Chocolates, candies or another snacks
Extra money but in Nuevos Soles (Peruvian national currency)
U$D. 339.00 per person
2 – 3 pax
4 – 5 pax
6 – 7 pax
8 – + pax
U$D. 489.00 p/p
U$D. 429.00 p/p
U$D. 389.00 p/p
U$D. 359.00 p/p
SALKANTAY TREKKING QUESTIONS
Who will participate in the tour with me?
We propose 2 types of Trek: in private or in group. In private, only friends and our staff will be part of the Trek; although the type of Trek preferred by some, is the most expensive formula. However, most prefer, by own desire and for reasons of budget, a Trek group; This means that you do the Trek accompanied by other hikers.
As it is impossible to know in advance (and for confidentiality) who will be part of your group, we can not respond accurately. Generally, it is a group of hikers of all nationalities and ages. We can summarize by saying that it is a small group of hikers with guides, pack horses and horsemen. It is noted that, as far as possible (tourists without a fixed departure date, etc) we try to group in a same trek up of people of the same nationality and age range.
What are the departure dates?
During these periods, we offer departures every day of the week, including holidays.
What to do with my luggage during the Trek?
Most places where you might stay (hotel, hostel or boarding houses) can store your luggage for free during the Trek. We also gladly can save it; all you have to do is bring it to our office the day before the Trek.
How many people is allowed to be in group?
The maximum size of the group in any of our tours is 12 people. We have considered 12 people,so is to have better communication and attention with the guide.
What if altitude sickness affects me?
When traveling along the Andes in Peru some people will suffer some effects of altitude sickness (Soroche). If you plan to hike the Salkantay is recommend arriving 2 or 3 days before to acclimatize and rest. We also recommend taking Mate de Coca which is very good to oxygenate the blood.
What is the difference between the Salkantay trek 4 and 5 days?
The difference between the salkantay trek of 4 and 5 days is the third day. On the 4-day hike, you will take a transport from the well known dome “LaPlaya” to Hidroeléctrica, and from this point you will walk for 2 hours until you reach the town of Aguas Calientes. In the trek of 5d / 4n the third day you spend the night in the village of Santa Teresa and you have the opportunity to visit and relax in the hot springs of Cocalmayo (highly recommended).
Can I apply vegetarian feeding Salkantay route?
In case you are a vegetarian, there is no problem, just inform us at the time of booking and indicate that you are 100% vegetarian. In the case of being allergic or “free gluten”, please indicate which products or foods can not be in your diet.
What is the best time to do Salkantay Trek?
This is a difficult question to answer because Peru has a wide variety of climatic conditions. We would say travelers can visit Peru any time of year.
The dry season lasts from May to November and usually the time when more is recommended. However, this is also the coldest time of year. Nighttime temperatures can drop below freezing. June, July and August are the most popular months to visit so they tend to encounter much larger crowds during these months.
In the rainy season (December to April), you can expect a lot of rain in some days of the week. For travelers who do not mind a bit of drizzle and muddy trails, at this time of year it offers fewer people and very green landscapes with wildflowers and flowering orchids often. The most beautiful seasons, April, June or September to November offer the best of both worlds. They usually have fewer people and warmer than the height of the dry season temperatures, but still tend to have relatively little rain.
Can I do Zipline tour?
Yes, it is possible, you only have to add $ 30 dollars at the time of the reservation, so we have everything coordinated. The Zip-line is made the fourth day of the tour.
Is it possible to deliver part of my luggage by horse?
The horses carry the equipment of camping and the food. For our clients it is allowed to send up to 5KL of luggage on horse, without any additional cost. The horses accompany the group until the lunch of the third day, from that moment each one is in charge of carrying his luggage.
If you wish to rent an additional saddle horse (To mount) the cost is 100 soles per day.
Can I buy snacks and water along the trek?
Every year this route of the Salkantay has been improving and implemented, so in each camp there is a small shop where you can buy some snacks and water, when making your purchase in these small shops we are contributing to the improvement of the economy of these families.
What is the best footwear to carry Salkantay route?
The Salkantay trek is a demanding tour, it is highly recommended to have hiking shoes, water resistant, strong for areas of stone, and much better if they are model boots, as it protects the ankle and optimizes the hike for the enjoyment of your journey to Machu Picchu. We also recommend wearing sandals to relax your feet after the trek.
Huayna Picchu Mountain is included in the package?
No, it is not included the entrance to Huayna Picchu, but if you are interested in climbing we recommend to make the reservation in advance of 3 to 4 months, since the spaces are limited and they are exhausted quickly.
To add this mountain to the Salkantay trek package you have to add $ 20.00 to the cost of the tour.
How long should I book in advence?
Every year this trek becomes more famous, as well as the Inca Trail, which is why we recommend making the reservation with 2 or 3 months in advance to have no problem with the income to Machu Picchu and the train tickets that are sold out quickly.
How many people sleep in 1 tent?
Our sleeping tents have a capacity for 4 people, but we use it only for 2 people per tent for passenger comfort. If you travel alone you will have to share with another person a tent which our guide will take care of.
You can also request a tent just for you, with an additional cost of $ 30.00.
What if you get sick and couldn’t continue the trek?
These cases of abandoning the tour for a disease are very rare, but if this happens our guides are prepared for any emergency. They have a kit of first aid and oxygen, and in the extreme case that you have to leave the group, our guides help and advise to return or continue to the nearest health center.
What should I bring?
The Salkantay trek is a trek that walks through the Andes of Peru and you get to camp at 3900 m.s.n.m. (Soraypampa camp), is also climbed to a height of 4600 m.s.n.m. (Salkantay pass) from where it descends until the 2800 m.s.n.m. The last days it is at an altitude of 2000 m.s.n.m for all this it is necessary to wear warm clothes for the first two days and for the following days light clothes. All this can compact it in a backpack of 40L or 30L and a small bag to use it daily.