Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu 5 days

The Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu is another option to reach the fabled city of the incas in 5 days. You’ll be awestruck by the massive snow-capped peak of Salkantay at 6270m/20,570ft, the second tallest peak in Cusco. In total contrast to the highland plains, you’ll also experience tropical valleys and the rich vegetation of the cloud forest as your trek continues. Our Salkantay trek ends with our visit to one of the 7 New Wonders of the World.

Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu is the second most famous trek after the Inca Trail Hike. Most importantly, you do not need permits or bookings in advance for this trek, another reason to be so popular. Our Salkantay Trek offers a challenging experience while your trekking team takes care of you. Enjoy the stunning views and different levels of altitudes as you trek to the lost city of the incas.

What is the Best Time for Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu?

The dry season (April to October) brings the best weather and is also considered the peak tourism season; if you plan to hike during this time, be sure to book some weeks in advance. The wet season starts in November with heavy rainfalls, and therefore almost impossible to enjoy the Salkantay trek.

Salkantay Trek  5 Days Itinerary

Day 1.- Cusco—Mollepata—Soraypampa

The Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu will start with a pickup from your hotel at 5:00 am and travel to Mollepata. You’ll see lovely landscapes such as the beautiful plains of Anta and the Limatambo valley. If the weather is clear, you’ll see panoramic views of the majestic Salkantay and other peaks. After a 2.5-hour bus ride, we’ll stop in Mollepata to eat breakfast, buy last-minute supplies, and stretch our legs. We’ll continue to Challakancha, the trailhead. You’ll meet your horseman who will load up the horses and mules.

At about 9:30 am, you’ll start your trek towards Soraypampa (3900m, 12,792ft) at a gentle pace, all the time enjoying stunning views. After about 3 hours, we’ll arrive at the Soraypampa campsite where we’ll have lunch. In the afternoon, you can take a nap or hike up to Humantay Lake (4 150m, 13,612ft), about 2-hour round trip. In the evening, you’ll have hot drinks followed by a delicious dinner.

Day 2.- Soraypampa—Huayraqmachay—Chaullay

Today is the toughest day of the entire trek, as we will be hiking over the highest pass between Salkantay and Humantay (4 625m/15,170ft). The day begins with a hearty breakfast at 7:00 am, and you’ll ascend about 6km (about 4 miles).

Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu involves Andean landscapes with craggy mountains and snowy peaks. The views at the top of the pass are stunning; it’s a good time to take pictures and celebrate! You’ll descend into the valley for the next two hours, arriving at Huayracmachay around 1:00 pm to have lunch.

We continue another 3 hours to Chaullay (2800m, almost 9,184ft), passing gentle streams and sub-tropical forests. We’ll arrive at our campsite for dinner and to spend the night.

Day 3.- Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu —Lucmabamba (optional hot springs).

The Salkantay Trek starts at 7:00 am again heading towards La Playa. We’ll hike along the left bank of the Lluscamayu River for about 5 hours. You’ll see brooks, waterfalls, exquisite orchids, lush ferns, and mossy trees besides coffee, banana, and avocado plantations. With luck, we’ll see the Cock of the Rock, Peru’s national bird, and an endangered species. We’ll arrive at La Playa farming community for lunch.

After lunch, we’ll hike a short time to arrive at our third camping spot at Lucmabamba. We’ll camp close to local families, surrounded by tropical crops. You can soothe your sore muscles at Santa Teresa‘s nearby natural hot springs and warm swimming pool. If you want to go to the hot springs, please ask your guide to arrange transportation (Not included). After enjoying a nap or the thermal baths, you’ll be driven back to the campsite for teatime and dinner.

Day 4.- Lucmabamba—Hydroelectric—Aguas Calientes

Today, you’ll have a very early breakfast so we can hike in the shade because the sun will get blazing hot later. At around 7:30 am, we begin our trek on an original Inca trail. We’ll ascend for about 3 hours, seeing coffee, banana and passion fruit plantations and a lovely view of the Santa Teresa Valley. We’ll arrive at Llaqtapata (2700m, 8,856ft) to have some free time to rest and enjoy the distant view of Machu Picchu.

After the break, we’ll descend for about 2 hours to the Hydroelectric Plant (2 000m, 6,560ft) which supplies power to Cusco. At around 16:30 pm, you and your guide will take a 45-minute train to Aguas Calientes, the base village for Machu Picchu where dinner, a hot shower, and a comfy bed await.

Day 5.- Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu— Return to Cusco

Today you’ll finally visit Machu Picchu! To maximize your experience, we’ll have a very early breakfast to catch one of the first buses up to the citadel. Your hotel will store your backpacks until you return from your tour. The bus takes about 30 minutes to arrive at the monument. Your guide will immediately take you to a beautiful spot to watch the sunrise and take pictures. You’ll have about a 2-hour guided tour where you’ll visit the most important parts of the monument and learn about Inca culture and history.

At the end of the tour, you’ll have free time to explore on your own, or climb Sun Gate. You should head back to the bus around 4:00 pm to catch your 6:20 pm train to Ollantaytambo. The time of your train departure depends on availability at the time of booking. The train trip to Ollantaytambo takes about 2 hours. Our driver will meet you at the train station to take you back to your hotel in Cusco.

Salkantay Trek Includes:
  • Pre-departure briefing.
  • Private transportation from your hotel to Challakancha trailhead.
  • Tents: 2 people in a 4-person-capacity tent so you’re more comfortable and your backpacks fit completely inside the tent.
  • One inflatable sleeping pad per person.
  • Dining tent with tables and chairs.
  • Professional English-speaking tour guide.
  • Chef and cooking equipment.
  • Pack animals to carry personal gear up to (maximum of 8kg per person including sleeping bag and pad) for Days 1 to 3.
  • One night hotel in Aguas Calientes.
  • Meals (4B, 4L, 4D + daily morning snack + daily tea service except for last day).
  • Vegetarian or special menus are available upon request at no extra cost.
  • Bio-degradable personal hand soaps.
  • First-aid kit including emergency oxygen bottle.
  • Train ticket from the hydroelectric power plant to Aguas Calientes (Day 4).
  • Machu Picchu entrance fee.
  • One-way bus ticket Aguas Calientes – Machu Picchu (Day 5)
  • Train ticket from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo /Cusco (Expedition class service)
  • Transportation from the train station to your hotel in Cusco.

Salkantay Trek Excludes:

  • Sleeping bag
  • First breakfast & last lunch.
  • Emergency horse.
  • Bus tickets (Machu Picchu-Aguas Calientes).
  • Snacks, drinks.
  • Tipping your trekking team is customary (depends on service).

Bring for Salkantay Trek:

  • Original passport and original International Student Identity Card (if applicable).
  • Sandals to relax feet at camp.
  • Warm clothes, including jacket, fleeces, and gloves.
  • Flashlight/headlamp and extra batteries.
  • Camera and extra batteries.
  • Hat or cap to protect you from the sun, rain, and cold.
  • Sun block minimum SPF 30 (it’s easy to burn at high elevations).
  • Insect repellent (minimum recommended 20% Deet).
  • Roll of toilet paper. Snacks: biscuits, energy bars, chocolate, raw fruits, muesli, etc.
  • Small towel and wet wipes.
  • Swimsuit to go to the hot springs in Santa Teresa and/or Aguas Calientes.
  • Cash in soles and/or $USD.
Private Salkantay Trek Price USD 550.00 Per Person

This trek is perfect for couples,friends,families and honeymooners. Above all, you can pick up any date you wish to start. (This tour is based on 8 people max.)

Methods of Payment

We require a deposit of 50% to confirm your reservation.

Western Union

There are additional fees associated with this method of payment, which will be paid by the client.

Address: CALLE NUEVA N° 462
Country: PERU
Receiver’s ID: 42567695

After sending payment, please send us an e-mail with the following information: Transaction numbers: Money Transfer Control Number (MTCN), a ten-digit number.


If you’d like to pay via PayPal or a direct bank deposit, please note that a 10% fee applies.

Please add this amount to the tour cost to cover the transaction costs. Our PayPal email address is:

For all methods of payment, please include the following information in your reservation email:

Copies of all passport(s).
Start date for your trip.
Indicate the name of your hotel in Cusco.