Both Classic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu and Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu offers rewarding experiences to trekkers. The former is dotted with plenty of Inca sites whilst the latter is more of a high-altitude experience.
We have exclusively designed this six-day Salkantay Inca Trail combo package to offer the highlights of both Inca Trail and Salkantay Trek.
Inca Trail Salkantay Trek begins high up in the Andes with a hike on the Salkantay route. You will be visiting the famous turquoise lagoon, Humantay Lake snuggled amidst the snow-capped peak of Mt. Humantay and Mt. Salkantay.
You will be witnessing the best of the Peruvian highland before diverging and joining the esteemed Inca Trail to Machu Picchu.
Accompanied by an English-speaking local tour guide, you will be visiting some of the prominent archaeological sites on this section of the trail before entering the emblematic Inca Citadel of Machu Picchu through Sungate.
The highest point of the Inca Trail Salkantay Trek is at 4500 meters above sea level (14,764 ft). We highly recommend that you spend a few days in Cusco and acclimatize to the altitude to avoid altitude sickness.
Why choose us for Inca Trail Salkantay Trek?
We are licensed Inca Trail tour operators with years of experience operating tours to Machu Picchu. Our tour guides are locals with a passion for history and hiking.
You will be getting a detailed insight into the Andean traditions and each site that we will be passing along on this exclusive Salkantay Inca Trail combo.
Do spare a moment to check out our reviews on Tripadvisor.
|PROGRAM||Inca Trail Salkantay Trek|
|LENGTH||6 Days /5 Nights|
|AVAILABILITY||March to January|
|ACTIVITY TYPE||Cultural / Recreational / Adventure|
|DIFFICULTY||DIFFICULT – MODERATE.|
DAY: 1 CUSCO – MOLLEPATA – SAYLLAPATA – SORAYPAMPA – PAMPA JAPONESA.
At 0430 AM, we will be picking you up from your hotel in Cusco. We will embark on a four-and-a-half-hour drive in our private transport to Mollepata. Along the way, we will be having a brief stop in Limatambo (2100m/6889ft). During the Inca Rule, this was an important point of access to Cusco City.
We will be giving you a tour of the remains of the Tarawasi archaeological complex here. It is home to an Inca Usno – a place where ceremonies for mother earth were conducted.
After touring the complex, we will be driving off the beaten track along the shores of Apurimac river to Mollepata (2800m/9186ft). This is the starting point of the six days Inca Trail Salkantay Trek.
We will be meeting our chef and muleteers here. Our tour guide will be briefing you on the safety aspects of trekking in the Andes.
All set, we will begin with a gradual uphill hike towards Sayllapata (3300m/10826ft). This route is dotted with sights of different native flora and fauna. We will be hiking along the communitarian irrigation canal and Apurimac Canyon, the deepest canyons in the country.
We will be camping in Pampa Japonesa for the night (4750m/15675ft).
Day 2: Pampa Japonesa – Inca Chiriaska Pass – Paucarcancha
At 0630 AM, our crew will be serving you a cup of freshly brewed Peruvian coffee or infusion before serving a traditional breakfast. We will then hike to Inca Chiriaska Pass (5028m/16495ft). This is the highest point on the six days Salkantay Inca Trail.
On this section of the trail, you will be getting an insight into life and traditions in the Peruvian Andes as we will e passing through different communities. People living here are untouched by modernity. They continue to speak in their native language, Quechua.
Along the route, you will be getting stunning views of Mt. Humantay and Mt. Salkantay on either side of the trail.
Once at the summit, our crew will be serving you a freshly brewed cup of coca tea while you contemplate the stunning view of the valley below. If you want to, you can hike for thirty minutes to see the glaciers. If not, we will begin our descent.
As we will hike down to our lunch camp, our crew will be serving a well-deserved lunch. We will have a short break before we continue our hike. We will be descending further along the Inca Canal to a small Andean community of Paucarcanha. It is home to just ten families.
We will be camping here for the night.
Day 3: Paucarcancha – Wayllabamba – Ayapata
After relishing an early morning breakfast, we will be hiking back in time as we will be embarking on a hike on the historic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. We will be passing through different farmlands and Andean communities.
People here, live in complete communion and gratitude to the mother earth (Pachamama). You will witness the serenity and tranquility here.
We will then reach Paucarcanha archeological complex, the first one along the trail. Here, we will witness the remains of an Inca site. Our guide will be introducing you to the history of the complex.
As we will leave the complex and begin to hike, you will witness a change in the topography as we near the Sacred Valley of the Incas.
We will be having a stop for lunch here. We will then begin our hike up the hill to our campsite. This section of the trail offers stunning views at every turn.
Once at the campsite, our Andean chef will be serving a traditional dinner.
Day 4: Ayapata – Dead Woman’s Pass – Runkuraqay Pass – Sayacmarca – Chaquicocha
We will begin the fourth day of this six-day Salkantay Inca Trail combo after a filling breakfast. The fourth day is not only challenging but also the most interesting part of the trail. We will be in the center of the Inca trail to Machu Picchu.
Dead Woman’s Pass:
We will begin with a four-hour hike up the hill to the highest point of the Inca Trail, Dead Woman’s Pass. You will once again witness a dramatic change in landscapes as we will be leaving behind the cloud forests and hiking up to the mountain.
The trail is dotted with many Andean grasses called Ichu. Highland animals survive on these grasses.
The dead woman’s pass nestles at 4215 meters/13,829 ft. above sea level. On reaching the pass, our crew will be serving a hot cup of tea. You can relish them with the sight of glittering glaciers.
Once you have soaked into the stunning views, we will be descending through the cobble-stoned path to our lunch camp. You will be hiking amidst the region full of exotic flowers and Orchids.
Our tour guide will explain the Andean brief that says that when you take things slow high up in the mountains, you will get a close connection with nature. In doing so, your path will be guided by a magical flight of hummingbirds which is a sign of good luck.
We will be serving you a traditional Andean meal for lunch.
After lunch, we will be hiking up the hill for another 45 minutes or so to Runkuraqay. It is a beautiful archaeological site that offers a panoramic view of the valley below. Our tour guide will be giving you an immersive tour of the complex.
We will then hike further up for another 45 minutes to Runkurakay Pass (3950m/12959ft). We will be having a brief stop here. Our tour guide will be giving you in-depth information about Andean mythology.
We will then embark on a 30 minutes hike down the hill to Yanacocha. The Incas performed water rituals here. As we continue the hike, you will witness the trail gradually engulfing in mist as we will enter the cloud forest again and approach Sayacmarca archaeological site.
Sayacmarca is home to the finest archaeological works of the Incas which remain a mystery even today.
After touring the complex, we will be hiking further for another 25 minutes to Chaquiqocha. Here you will feel the warmth and energy of the friendly Amazonian spirit, full of life. We will be retiring to our respective tents after dinner and a full day of hiking from the Andes to the Amazon.
After breakfast, we will embark on yet another long and interesting hike. We will be visiting a number of archaeological sites that we visit and learn about from our guide. From Pacaymayo we climb to the second pass, the Abra de Runkurakay (3970 masl).
Halfway up, we visit the archaeological complex with the same name. This site, located at 3800 masl, consists of a small oval structure that is believed to have served the purpose of a watchtower. After going over the pass, we descend towards Yanacocha (Black Lagoon) and enter the cloud forest to finally arrive at Sayacmarca (3624 masl).
This is a beautiful complex made up of a semicircular construction, enclosures at different levels, narrow streets, liturgical fountains, patios, and irrigation canals. Continuing up an easy climb, we arrive at the third pass, the Abra de Phuyupatamarca (3700 masl).
Along this climb we can appreciate the magnitude of the Inca’s ancient craft, by walking along paths semi-detached from the mountain and seeing rocks that fill up ravines in perfect order, saving the trail from the multileveled Andean geography.
We go through an Inca tunnel to later arrive at the aforementioned pass and down to the complex of the same name. This is one of the most complete and best-preserved archaeological complexes along the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu and is located on the highest point of a mountain.
Curiously, Phuyupatamarca means town over the clouds. From above, one can observe a sophisticated sacred complex made up of water fountains with solid foundations, and also impressive views of the Urubamba River valley and the long descending stone steps along which we will continue on to Wiñay Wayna (2700 masl).
At this campsite, we find a lodge with a restaurant, bar, and bathrooms with hot showers. The campsite has the same name as the complex located only five minutes away from the lodge.
Wiñay Wayna is an impressive complex made up of an agricultural center with numerous terraces, a religious sector, and an urban sector.
After touring the complex, we will be hiking to the Sun Gate (Intipunku). This point will take an hour of hiking along a trail of flat stones on the edges of cliffs in the highland jungle. After relishing the views from the Sungate, we will be hiking for an hour to Machu Picchu.
We won’t tour the citadel as we will save the best for the last day. However, you will be getting a panoramic view and taking a bus down to Aguas Calientes town. We will be accommodating you in an ensuite hotel room for the night.
Day 06: Machu Picchu – Aguas Calientes – Cusco
The epic day of Short Inca Trail to Machu Picchu 2 Days. We will be leaving quite early in the morning from your hotel in Aguas Calientes and embark on a bus ride up the hill to Machu Picchu.
Our tour guide will assist you in clearing the security control. Once inside, you will witness the golden rays of the rising sun shimmering on the Inca walls. We will be giving you an immersive guided tour of the citadel for two hours.
We will be visiting the remains of the plaza, ceremonial site, remains of Royal Quarters, and more. After the tour, you will have some free time to explore Machu Picchu on your own. If you have booked to climb Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu mountain, our tour guide will direct you to the respective trailhead.
Please note that you need permits to hike any of these mountains. Often permits are sold out six months in advance. So if you intend to hike, do let us know at the time of booking your Short Inca Trail hike.
After the Machu Picchu tour, we will exit the citadel and take a bus back down to Aguas Calientes. You will have some free time here to check out the town or have lunch (not included in the price)
Later in the evening, we will be taking the train back to Ollantaytambo in the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Our representative will meet you on arrival and drive you back to Cusco. We will be reaching Cusco by 0900 PM.
The Government office assigns us the campsites.
People who want to climb Huayna Picchu mountain must know that there is a limit of 400 people per day that can climb it.
The time of hiking will depend on the group. The guide can change the places for having lunch and camping according to the physical condition of the group.
Each guide has his own way of leading his group but always his decisions will be for the benefit of the tourists.
If you would like an extra night in Aguas Calientes please let us know at the time of your reservation so that we do not have problems with your return train tickets.
SALKANTAY.and INKA TRAIL That is an adventure tour that we must enjoy, to the maximum with good weather or, if not, always we must have an open mind, a positive attitude and a good sense of humor.
- An explanation two days before departing
- Transport in private bus to the start of the trek
- Transfer to your hotel on return
- Transfer from Ollantaytambo to Cusco.
- Meals according to the program (Vegetarian available)
- Boiled water on all days for your bottles
- Snacks before trekking
- Camping tents for 2 and 4 persons depending on the requirements
- Camping equipment, dining tents, kitchen, tables, chairs
- Cook and assistant cook
- Kitchen/eating utensils
- Pack animals (mules and horses) to carry the baggage and equipment.
- Emergency horse
- Wranglers to care for the pack animals
- Professional guide who speaks English, Spanish, and Quechua
- Assistant guide for groups larger than 8 people
- Last night’s celebration dinner in Aguas Calientes in a restaurant.
- Entrance into Machu Picchu
- Bus up to and back down from Machupicchu.
- Return train ticket to Cusco
- First aid equipment and oxygen tank
- igloo tents – 2 persons in each 4-person capacity tent with plenty of space for your backpacks
- Camping equipment, dining tents, kitchen, tables, chairs
- Porter to carry the baggage and equipment.
- Teatime every day (tea, coffee, biscuits, popcorn)
- Breakfast on the first day
- Lunch on the last day
- Tips for personnel: guide, cook, wranglers (according to their job)
- Sleeping bags (they can be rented in the office)
- Entrances to hot springs
- If you would like to rent an additional horse, the cost is $10 per day
WHAT TO BRING ON THE TREK
- 1 small nylon reinforced backpack to carry the things you need for the trek (camera, drinks, etc.)
- 1 large backpack or suitcase to keep the things you don‘t need in your hotel in Cusco until you return from your trek
- Sleeping bag good for -5°C (which can be rented in Cusco)
- Small flashlight and extra batteries
- 1 water bottle (1 liter) or a small plastic throw-away bottle
- Hiking boots
- Tennis shoes
- 1 jacket (of nylon with hood and water and wind resistant)
- 1 Fleece Jacket
- 1 pair of gloves and a hat of wool (they can be bought during your trip)
- 3 or 4 short-sleeved shirts (preferably “dry fit” that don’t retain water)
- 2 pairs of shorts such as the Bermudas.
- Socks: 4 pairs of wool and 4 of fiber (Coolmax) for the trek (avoid cotton as these can retain water)
- 1 sun hat and sunglasses
- Personal medications and toiletries in small containers
- Sunscreen for your skin and lips
- Insect repellent
- Moisturizer lotion to avoid the drying out of the skin
- Bathing suit for the thermal baths in Aguas Calientes
- Heated sleeping mat
- Sleeping bags which can be rented in the office for $5 per day and good for – 10°C.
- Professional walking sticks can be rented in the office for $2 per day
- Energy foods: chocolates, granola bars, dried fruits, etc. (they can be purchased in Cusco.
PRICES 2022 to January 2023 Salkantay and Inca Trail 6 days 5 nights
2 for persons 1,350 USD.
3 for persons 1,310 USD
4 for person 1270 USD
5 for persons 1220 USD
6 for person 1180 USD
7+ or more persons 1100 USD
If you wish to travel alone, you need to ask for a private tour, letting us know which date you wish to leave, and you must make your reservation a week ahead of time so that we can organize your tour.
If you wish to go with other people, we can let you know what dates are available and you can join an existing group.
Write to us to make your reservation and we will send you the form and the payment conditions
Students: $20 U.S. (only for students who have a current international student card (ISIC card)
Children: $20 U.S. (minors of 16 years with proof of passport)