Salcantay trek & Machu Picchu

A trekking route to Machu Picchu out of the beaten path along unexplored Inca trails. On the way you will see several Andean towns, different ecological zones, awesome valleys and mountains and then reach jungle landscapes where Machu Picchu is located. On the way you will also appreciate the striking snow capped Salcantay Mountain

Day 1 Arrival to Lima

We meet you at Lima´s airport and transfer you to your hotel in Miraflores, where you are free to relax and wander around at your own pace. Depending on the arrival time we have plenty of suggestions for you so you can make the most of your first day in Lima.

Meals: None

Accommodation: Comfortable hotel in Lima

Day 2 Cusco walking city tour & Sacsayhuaman

After an early breakfast we have a short drive to the airport to take our 55 minutes flight to the city of Cusco. If possible we will try to get a seat on the left side of the aircraft as some of the best views of the Andes can be seen by this side of the aircraft. Once in Cusco airport we meet one of our representatives who take us in private shuttle to our hotel. The morning is free to acclimatize to the altitude. After lunch a walking city tour takes us not only through the most touristic sites in Cusco such as the Main Square, Cathedral and Koricancha “Temple of the Sun”, but also along ancient streets where we will discover the magic of Cusco. In the afternoon we drive to the northern outskirts of Cusco heading to the magnificent ruins of Sacsayhuaman and its impressive rocky constructions. This tour gives us also free time to wander around by ourselves.

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation: Comfortable hotel in Cusco

Day 3 Sacred Valley of the Incas (Awanacancha-Pisac-Ollantaytambo)

After breakfast, we meet our guide who takes us on a tour through the Sacred Valley of the Incas. The first stop on the route is Awanacancha where we can see all the different camelids of Peruvian Andes.  Then we visit the archaeological complex of Pisac and have free time to wander around the colorful Indian market, where a variety of handicrafts are available.  After this, we drive to Urubamba for a delicious buffet lunch, followed by a guided tour through the giant Ollantaytambo fortress, which was once the scene of one of the most famous battles between the Incas and the invading Spanish conquerors.

Meals: Breakfast & buffet lunch

Accommodation: Comfortable hotel in Cusco

Day 4 Salcantay trek (Cusco – Mollepata – Marcocasa – Soraypampa)

The tour starts at 06:00 a.m. with private transportation from the city of Cusco. We drive through the towns of Izcuchaca and Limatambo and after two hours, we arrive to Mollepata where we stop for a short rest and a coffee. After this, we continue our ride for one hour until reaching the small settlement of Marcocasa at 3,300 m.a.s.l./10,824 ft.  At this point, we start our trek of 5 hours towards our campsite at Soraypampa (3,850 m.a.s.l./12,628 ft), an Andean valley located at the foothills of the beautiful Mount Humantay (5,910 m.a.s.l./19,385 ft). On the way we enjoy nice views of the surrounding valleys of Curahuasi and Apurimac.

Meals: Breakfast, box lunch and dinner

Day 5 Salcantay trek (Soraypampa – Huayracmachay)

From Soraypampa we start our four-hour trek towards Soyrococha at 4,400 m.a.s.l./14,432 ft, where we have our first lunch while enjoying great views of the impressive west face of Mount Salcantay (6,264 m.a.s.l./20,546 ft).  After lunch, a three-hour hike takes us down to our camp at Huayracmachay. On the way, we first reach the Salcantay pass at 4,750 m.a.s.l./15,580 ft. and then we trek down to our campsite at the Huayracmachay settlement. During the hike we have a permanent view of the amazing Mount Salcantay. Luckily, we might also observe the flight of the amazing condor known as the “King of the Andes”. During our way down from Salcantay pass we also have the opportunity to observe the remains of an ancient Inca Trail, a road of approximately 6 meters wide. Our campsite is located at 3,800 m.a.s.l./12,464 ft.

Meals: Breakfast, box lunch and dinner

Day 6 Salcantay trek (Huayracmachay – Winaypoko)

After breakfast, at 08:00 am, we are ready to continue our seven-hour trek heading northeast down to the Colpapampa Valley (3,200 ma.s.l./10,496 ft).  As soon as we leave the Huaracmachay plain, we start an impressive descend into the deep canyon of the Salcantay River. The highland landscape suddenly turns into an amazing cloud forest with the typical grass, bushes and trees covered with beautiful bromeliads. After 3 hours we reach the small settlement of Challway and at this point one more hike (45 minutes) takes us to Colpapampa village, where we enjoy a hot lunch. After a good rest, we continue our descent to the shores of the Totora River where we will enjoy the nearby hot water springs.  After this, we follow the north side of the Santa Teresa River, walking for three hours until reaching our next campsite at Winaypoko settlement (2,800 m.a.s.l./5,904 ft).  Just 30 minutes before Winaypoko we have the opportunity to observe the beautiful Coripacchi waterfalls. In the evening, we enjoy a good meal and wine around a camp fire.

Meals: Breakfast, box lunch and dinner

Day 7 Salcantay trek (Winaypoko – Cochapampa Village – Hidroelectrica) – Aguas Calientes

Today is our last trekking day. We hike for three hours down to the place known as “La Playa”. This trek takes us along the north side of Santa Teresa River. On our way down, we see plantations of banana, coffee, granadillas (a typical fruit from the area), avocado trees, etc. The sound of flocks of parrots accompanies us during the hike. At la Playa we enjoy lunch and then we board our transportation to get to Santa Teresa; from here we continue hiking until reaching La Hidroelectrica (operation area of the hydroelectric power plant).  Here we board the local train to the town of Aguas Calientes where we arrive after a 1 hour ride. Then our guide takes us to our hotel for a well deserved rest.

Meals: Breakfast, box lunch and dinner

Accommodation: Comfortable hotel in Aguas Calientes town

Day 8 Aguas Calientes – Machu Picchu – Cusco

We have an early breakfast in the hotel and then catch the bus to the main entrance of Machu Picchu (2,400 m.a.s.l./7,872 ft). A guided tour shows us this beautiful Inca City, one of the most famous in the world. We visit Intihuatana, the Temple of the Three Windows, the Temple of the Moon, the terraces, the ceremonial fountains, the Sun Gate and other sectors of the impressive citadel. In the afternoon we take the bus down to Aguas Calientes and then the train back to Ollantaytambo (or Cusco), where we board our transport back to Cusco. Transfer to our hotel.

Meals: breakfast

Accommodation: Comfortable hotel in Cusco

Day 9 Cusco to Lima

After breakfast you will be transferred to the airport for your flight to Lima. End of our services.

Meals: Breakfast

What’s Included

Accommodation

  • 01 night in a comfortable hotel in Lima
  • 03 camping nights
  • 01 night hotel at Aguas Calientes
  • 03 nights in a comfortable hotel in Cusco

 Transport

  • All transfers between airports, hotels, train station, tours and any other activity mentioned in the program. All transportation is included in private cars.
  • Transfer to starting point of the trek and back to Cusco
  • Transport from La Playa to Hidroelectrica
  • Train from Hidroelectrica to Aguas Calientes (4th day)
  • Expedition train from Machu Picchu to Cusco
  • Bus tickets  (Aguas Calientes- Machu Picchu- Aguas Calientes)

 

Meals

  • All breakfasts are included
  • All balanced meals during the trekking (4D/3N), including snacks
  • Cook specialized in Andean cuisine
  • Buffet lunch at the Sacred Valley (2nd day)

 

Equipment

  • All common camping gear: Mountain tent for two, mattress, kitchen dishes, kitchen tent, dining tent, toilet tent, table and chairs.
  • First aid kit with oxygen
  • Shortwave radios
  • Sanitary equipment (disinfected dishes, filtered water, etc)
  • Environment care (all the garbage goes back to Cusco, portable toilet treatment)

 

Guides and porters

  • Orientation meeting in Cusco (previous to departure date)
  • Horses and mules for the whole equipment
  • Professional bilingual guide (English and Spanish) plus one assistant for every nine clients

NOT INCLUDED

  • Internal flights in Peru
  • Entrance fee to Machu Picchu, Mollepata and archeological sites in Cusco and Sacred Valley
  • Airport taxes
  • Travel insurance
  • Meals not described in the program
  • Tips for porters, cooker and guide
  • Sleeping bags (we can hire one if you ask for it)

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