TRIP ITINERARY

DAY 1:

CUSCO, EXPLORATION OF HUMANTAY LAKE AND CAMPING AT QUISWARNIYOC

  • The Salkantay trek to Machu Picchu begins in Cusco with hotel pickups scheduled between 4:30 and 5:00 AM. During this period, the guide will gather participants from their respective hotels in Cusco. After assembling the group, you will depart from Cusco around 5:15 AM, heading towards the town of Mollepata by car, a journey of approximately 2 hours. Upon arrival in Mollepata, you’ll enjoy a hearty breakfast at one of the local restaurants, included in the tour. Typically, the stay in Mollepata, including breakfast and last-minute supplies shopping, lasts about an hour.
  • Post breakfast, the journey continues by car towards Soraypampa for another hour. Once at Soraypampa, you will meet the team of muleteers and horses, marking the start of the Salkantay trek. Before beginning the hike, all equipment and duffle bags will be handed over to the muleteers and horses. The trek from Soraypampa to Humantay Lagoon starts at an elevation of 3,900 meters and ascends to 4,200 meters, the location of the lagoon. The initial part of the trek involves a gradual ascent for about an hour, followed by a steeper climb for the last hour. The total hike to the lagoon takes approximately 2 hours.
  • Upon reaching Humantay Lagoon, you’ll have free time to enjoy the breathtaking views, take photos, and listen to the guide’s insights. The stay at the lagoon typically lasts between 1 to 1.5 hours, weather permitting. After visiting the lagoon, the descent begins towards the Quiswarniyoc campsite. This part of the trek involves a 1-hour downhill walk followed by a 45-minute nearly flat trek.
  • Upon arriving at the Quiswarniyoc campsite, usually around 2:00 PM, you will be treated to a delicious lunch prepared by the cooking team. After lunch, the guide will show you to your respective sleeping quarters for some well-deserved rest. The afternoon, post-lunch, is free of scheduled hikes, allowing you to take short walks and explore the vast Quiswarniyoc area, enjoying the imposing views of Salkantay, which looms directly in front of the campsite. Around 6:00 PM, a warm dinner will be served. After dinner, you will receive important information about Day 02 of the trek, which involves reaching the highest point of the entire route.

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SUMMARY FOR DAY 01:

  • Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner
  • Accommodation: Mountain Sky Hut
  • Difficulty Level: Moderate
  • Hiking Distance: 10 kilometers (approximately 6 miles)
  • Estimated Trekking Duration: 5 to 6 hours
  • Campsite Elevation: 4,000 meters above sea level
  • Weather Forecast: Expect cold and windy nights during the dry season (May to August), with temperatures potentially dropping to -5 degrees Celsius.
  • Additional Note: This day serves as a period of training and preparation. It is ideal for acclimatizing in anticipation of Day 02, which poses the most significant challenge of the entire trek.

Early Morning Awakening:

  • The day begins at 5 AM with a coca leaf tea known as “te despierto,” served by the kitchen team to assist with acclimatization to the altitude.
  • After waking, you have about 30 minutes to get ready and pack for the day.

Breakfast:

  • Breakfast is typically served at 5:30 AM.
  • After enjoying your meal, there’s a brief period for last-minute backpack checks and bathroom use before starting the hike to the highest point of the Salkantay trek.

Ascent to Salkantay Pass:

  • The trek from Quiswarniyoc to the trek’s highest point, the Salkantay Pass at 4700 meters above sea level, begins around 6 AM.
  • The uphill walk from the camp to the pass takes between 3 to 3.5 hours at a steady pace, with extended breaks every hour for rest and energy replenishment.
  • The ascent is manageable with proper acclimatization; the main challenge lies in adapting to the altitude.

Time at Salkantay Pass:

  • Upon reaching the summit, you’ll have time to soak in the stunning views, photograph the mountains, and feel the proximity to Salkantay Mountain.
  • The guide will often provide insights into the area and may involve you in a local ritual to express gratitude to the Apus, the mountain gods in local beliefs.
  • You’ll spend about 30 to 45 minutes at the peak.

Descent to Lunch Spot:

  • The descent starts with a 2-hour trek from the Salkantay Pass to the lunch spot at Wayracmachay.
  • Here, the kitchen team awaits with a nutritious lunch.

Post-Lunch Rest and Second Descent:

  • After lunch, there’s a short time for rest, weather permitting.
  • The final descent segment for the day is from the lunch spot to the second camp at Chawllay.
  • This descent, lasting between 2.5 to 3 hours, is slightly steep but offers incredible views as you transition from the Andes to the Amazon region.

Arrival at Chawllay:

  • Upon arrival at Chawllay, the second campsite at 2900 meters, the guide will show you to your accommodations for the night.
  • The day concludes with a delicious dinner prepared by the cooking team.
  • This itinerary for Day 02 of the hike is crafted to balance challenging ascents and descents with ample opportunities to appreciate the natural beauty and cultural significance of the Salkantay region.

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SUMMARY FOR DAY 02

  • Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • Accommodation: Mountain Sky Hut
  • Difficulty Level: Challenging
  • Maximum Altitude: 4,700 meters at Salkantay Pass
  • Hiking Distance: 22 kilometers (approximately 14 miles)
  • Estimated Trekking Duration: 9 to 10 hours
  • Camping Altitude: 2,900 meters
  • Weather Forecast: Warm and hot at lower elevations.
  • Additional Note: Day 02 is the most difficult day of the entire trek. However, you will have the entire day to complete it and reach Campsite 02. It is also the most beautiful day due to the stunning views of the mountains and Salkantay.

Morning Start:

  • The day begins with a wake-up tea at 5:30 AM as the kitchen team assists you in waking up, followed by time for packing and preparing for the day’s hike.
  • Breakfast is served around 6:00 AM, setting you up for the trek ahead.

Trek from Chawllay to Lucmabamba:

  • The hike commences at approximately 6:30 AM from Chawllay, heading towards the third campsite, Lucmabamba.
  • This 5-hour trek predominantly features flat terrain through the Santa Teresa valley, offering a chance to observe diverse flora and fauna, culminating in an immersive coffee tour experience upon arrival in Lucmabamba.

Coffee Tour Experience:

  • In Lucmabamba, you’ll visit a local family to engage in a coffee tour, where you’ll taste the renowned Santa Teresa coffee and learn about the entire coffee production process in the area.

Lunch at Lucmabamba:

  • After the coffee tour, return to the campsite for a nutritious and delicious lunch prepared by the cooking team.
  • Post-lunch, no further hiking is scheduled, but you can opt for the additional activity of visiting the Santa Teresa hot springs.

Afternoon Options Post-Lunch:

  • The afternoon is free for relaxation, with the option to visit the rejuvenating Santa Teresa hot springs, especially rewarding after three days of trekking.
  • The additional cost for the hot springs visit is about 40 soles, covering transportation to and from the springs (about an hour each way) and the entry fee of 10 soles.
  • You can decide whether to participate in this activity at the campsite, with coordination from your guide, or choose to rest at the Lucmabamba campsite.

Visit to Santa Teresa Hot Springs:

  • If you opt for the hot springs, you’ll be taken there by local transport, spending about 2 hours at the springs before returning to the Lucmabamba campsite.
  • A delicious dinner prepared by the cooking team awaits you at the campsite, usually served around 7 PM.

Evening and Preparation for the Next Day:

  • After dinner, you will receive information and details for the next day’s itinerary, which leads to the base town of Machu Picchu, Aguas Calientes.

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SUMMARY FOR DAY 03

  • Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping Tents
  • Difficulty Level: Easy Day Hike
  • Hiking Distance: 16 kilometers (approximately 10 miles)
  • Estimated Trekking Duration: 5 to 6 hours
  • Camping Altitude: 2,000 meters
  • Weather Forecast: Hot and humid during the day, chilly at night
  • Additional Note: This third day of the Salkantay Trek offers a relaxed exploration of the Amazonian part of the route, featuring the unique coffee tour and an optional visit to the rejuvenating Santa Teresa hot springs.
  • Morning Start: We will wake you up at 6:00 AM, giving you time to pack, followed by breakfast served at 6:30 AM. The hike begins around 7:00 AM from the Lucmabamba campsite to the archaeological site of Llactapata.
  • Hike to Llactapata: A 3-hour ascent on an original and well-maintained Inca trail leads to the small archaeological site of Llactapata. From Llactapata, you will gain a unique view of Machu Picchu, Waynapicchu, and the surrounding mountains, offering a different perspective of Machu Picchu’s location in the mountains. There will be time to explore the Llactapata ruins and appreciate the view, and after the visit, it’s time to start the descent towards Hidroeléctrica.
  • Descent to Hidroelectrica Central: The path from Llactapata to Hidroeléctrica is somewhat steep, arguably the most pronounced descent of the trek. In this part, trekking poles are very helpful. It’s a 2-hour descent from Llactapata to the Hydroelectric station, where you will have lunch.
  • Lunch and Rest at Hidroelectrica Central: Upon arrival at the hydroelectric station, enjoy a delicious lunch at a local restaurant. After lunch, you will have time to relax before continuing towards the town of Aguas Calientes.
  • Final Hike to Aguas Calientes: The last part of the day involves a 3-hour walk along the railway from the Hydroelectric station to Aguas Calientes, the base town for Machu Picchu. Throughout this walk, you can also see parts of Machu Picchu from the valley. Upon arrival in Aguas Calientes, the guide will take you to the hostel for the night, where you can rest, shower, and prepare for the last dinner in the town.
  • Dinner in Aguas Calientes: Dinner is planned around 7:00 PM at a local restaurant in Aguas Calientes. After dinner, make the final preparations for the next day’s adventure in Machu Picchu.

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SUMMARY FOR DAY 04:

  • Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • Accommodation: Overnight Hotel Stay in Aguas Calientes
  • Difficulty Level: Challenging
  • Hiking Distance: 24 kilometers (approximately 15 miles)
  • Estimated Trekking Duration: 8 to 9 hours
  • Maximum Altitude: 2,700 meters at Llactapata
  • Altitude of Aguas Calientes Base Town: 2,000 meters
  • Weather Forecast: Hot
  • Additional Note: This fourth day of the Salkantay Trek combines historical exploration at the Llactapata archaeological site with a panoramic descent through the Amazonian forest, culminating in a relaxing evening in Aguas Calientes, preparing for the visit to Machu Picchu. The trail to Llactapata and the site itself are nestled in the dense vegetation of the Peruvian Amazon, offering a sense of untouched nature waiting to be discovered.

The final day of our tour is a thrilling experience:

  • visiting Machu Picchu, a highly anticipated highlight. We rise at dawn, around 4 a.m., to enjoy breakfast at the hotel. Around 4:30 am, we begin our hike towards the Inca citadel of Machu Picchu. The hike from Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu takes about 1.5 hours, blending 30 minutes of a flat trail with an hour’s ascent through historic stone steps leading directly to Machu Picchu’s main entrance.

Alternative Route: Bus to Machu Picchu

  • For those preferring a less strenuous option, there’s an alternative to take a bus from Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu. This convenient option can be booked the night before or on the morning itself. The first buses from Aguas Calientes depart at 5:30 am and cost $12 per trip, taking approximately 25 minutes.

Arrival and Entry Procedures

  • The goal is to arrive at the Machu Picchu gate by 6:00 am, whether on foot or by bus. At the main control, you must show your Machu Picchu tickets and original passports. If you booked as a student, you also need to present your original student ID.

Machu Picchu Guided Tour

  • After passing through the controls, we head to the upper part of Machu Picchu for iconic photo opportunities. You’ll have time to capture images and enjoy the breathtaking views. Then, our expert Machu Picchu guide will lead a 2.5-hour tour through the Inca citadel. During this tour, you’ll discover all the secrets and history that make Machu Picchu a world wonder.

Independent Exploration Time

  • Following the guided tour at Machu Picchu, you will have around 30 minutes of free time to continue exploring the circuit on your own. Remember, the maximum allowed visiting time at Machu Picchu is 3 hours according to park regulations.

Post-Visit Itineraries

  • After visiting Machu Picchu, the journey continues, but at this point, each group member will follow their own itinerary based on the options they chose at the time of booking. Those who have reserved tickets for Waynapicchu or Machu Picchu Mountain will receive guidance from our guide to access the entry points of these mountains. It’s important to remember that these tickets must be reserved in advance through Machu Picchu Reservations.

After Machu Picchu Return Options to Cusco

  • Car Return Option: If you choose the car return option, you must start a roughly 3-hour hike from Machu Picchu to Hydroelectric. Be at Hydroelectric by 2:30 pm to take the car that will transport you from Hydroelectric to Cusco. This trip takes about 6 hours, arriving in Cusco around 10 pm, with the final stop at Plaza Regocijo in the center of Cusco city. This return option does not provide enough time for additional hikes to Waynapicchu or Machu Picchu Mountain, as they require about 3 extra hours. To catch the car at 2:30 pm at Hydroelectric, it’s recommended to leave Machu Picchu no later than 11:30 am.
  • Train Return Option: If you opt for the train return, you’ll need to go back to the town of Aguas Calientes, which can be done by walking for approximately 1.5 hours or taking a 25-minute bus ride for $12. Once in Aguas Calientes, you’ll have time to explore the town and perhaps have lunch, as the last lunch is not included in the tour. Then, head to the train station to catch the 2:30 or 3:30 pm train to Ollantaytambo, a journey of about 1.5 hours. In Ollantaytambo, our transfer service will be waiting to take you back to Cusco by car, a trip of approximately two hours, arriving in Cusco around 6:30 pm. The train option allows for more time at Machu Picchu and is sufficient for the optional mountain hikes. It is faster and more comfortable, making the return to Cusco less tiring.

IMPORTANT NOTE: ITINERARY FOR THE LAST DAY AT MACHU PICCHU

  • The itinerary for the final day at Machu Picchu is subject to the availability of tickets for Machu Picchu. The proposed schedule works seamlessly with tickets for Machu Picchu for Circuit 02, available for entry times at 6, 7, or 8 am  – check availability at www.machupicchu.gob.pe
  • In the event that tickets for Circuit 02 are not available for the 6, 7, or 8 am entry times at the time of your trek reservation, the itinerary will require adjustments. For alternative itinerary options in such cases, especially if there are no morning entry times available or if Circuit 02 tickets are fully booked, please refer to the following link: Alternative Itinerary Options for Machu Picchu Visit.
  • This link will guide you through the possible alternatives, ensuring you still have a fulfilling experience at Machu Picchu despite the changes in schedule or circuit availability.

Inclusions

Included

BELOW, WE OUTLINE WHAT IS INCLUDED IN THE 5-DAY SALKANTAY TREK TO MACHU PICCHU


  • Included Machu Picchu Tickets: The price of the Salkantay Trek, regardless of the chosen option, be it return by car or train, includes a ticket to visit Machu Picchu. Typically, this ticket grants access to Circuit 02 of Llaqta Machu Picchu -MORE INFO HERE-, subject to availability at the time of your reservation. If Circuit 02 is not available, we’ll arrange for an alternative such as Circuit 01, 04, or 03. For more details, [click here], and ensure you don’t miss out on the unforgettable visit to Machu Picchu.
  • Pre-Trek Briefing: Ensure you’re trek-ready by attending our detailed briefing at 7:00 pm the day before your departure, held at the Machu Picchu Reservations office. Can’t make it in person? No problem. Just contact us at +51974217700 to set up a virtual briefing. For a seamless setup, please reach out at least 48 hours in advance so we can arrange a personalized session with your tour guide.
  • Duffle Bag Service for 7 Kilos: During the informational briefing, you’ll receive a duffle bag to pack up to 7 kilos of your personal gear. Our team will transport these duffle bags on horses throughout the entire trek, and you’ll have access to them at the campsites. This allows you to hike comfortably with just your daypack. Once your trek concludes and you return to Cusco, you can conveniently leave the duffle bags at the Machu Picchu Reservations office.
  • Experienced Guides: Our tours are led by official bilingual (English and Spanish) tourism guides. All guides working with Machu Picchu Reservations are licensed by the Peruvian government, having received their qualifications from recognized universities or tourism institutes in Peru. This ensures you receive knowledgeable and professional guidance throughout your journey.
  • Cooking Team: The chef and kitchen assistants are dedicated to preparing the delicious meals you’ll enjoy on the Salkantay route. Trained to properly handle food in remote locations like the Salkantay Trek, these cooks are adept at crafting balanced and nutritious dishes to energize every adventurer. They are proficient in creating vegetarian or vegan options and will be attentive to any allergies or specific dietary restrictions you may have.
  • Kitchen Equipment and Utensils: We provide all the necessary kitchen equipment and utensils for preparing and serving meals. Our team ensures these are transported to each campsite so you can enjoy your food properly and in optimal conditions.
  • Muleteer and Horse Team: Our dedicated team of muleteers and horses plays a crucial role in ensuring a smooth trek. They are responsible for the careful transportation of all equipment and personal luggage to each campsite. This includes food, camping gear, sleeping bags, and your 7-kilo duffle bags containing personal items. They expertly organize and manage the luggage to ensure timely delivery at each camp, even preparing for adverse weather conditions like rain. With their hard work, you can focus on the journey while your belongings are safely and efficiently handled.
  • Convenient Hotel Pick-Up Service (4:30 – 5:00 am): Begin your tour with ease using our direct pick-up service from your Cusco hotel or Airbnb. Our team ensures a prompt and smooth start between 4:30 and 5:00 am, freeing you to focus entirely on the excitement of your adventure ahead.
  • Private Group Transportation: Our service includes private transportation for your group from Cusco to the starting point of the trek at Soraypampa. You’ll travel in a comfortable tourist vehicle from the city of Cusco directly to Soraypampa, where you’ll meet with the support team to begin your trekking adventure. This journey by car takes approximately 3 hours, offering a convenient and efficient way to start your trek with ease and comfort.
  • Meals and Refreshments: Our tour provides a comprehensive dining experience with 4 nutritious lunches, 4 delicious dinners, and 5 comforting breakfasts, ensuring you’re well-fueled for the trek. Additionally, we offer morning teas and snacks at the camps for that extra boost. Notably, the first breakfast is also included in your package. All these meals are thoughtfully prepared by our skilled kitchen team to offer you a blend of taste and energy essential for your journey.
  • Included Accommodations: Dive into nature’s embrace with our thoughtfully organized accommodations on the 5-day tour. Spend 2 nights in spacious panoramic cabins, a magical night under the stars in a glass dome, and conclude with a warm stay in a cozy hostel in Aguas Calientes. Our camp accommodations are spacious, comfortably fitting 4 people, but we typically assign them to just 2 for enhanced privacy and comfort. We’re flexible, however, and can accommodate groups of 3 or 4 wishing to stay together. Each site is equipped with comfortable mattresses and pillows for restorative sleep. Just remember to bring or rent a sleeping bag. Anticipate a serene and cozy retreat, deeply connected with the scenic wonders of your journey.
  • Hostel Stay in Aguas Calientes: Spend a rejuvenating night in a cozy hostel in Aguas Calientes, also known as Machu Picchu Town, the gateway to the iconic Inca citadel. Our selected hostels provide a range of comfortable rooms with private bathrooms, hot showers, and Wi-Fi access, catering to couples or groups with double and triple room options. This relaxing environment offers all the essential amenities to rest and refresh after your trek, setting you up perfectly for your visit to the magnificent Machu Picchu.
  • Machu Picchu Guided Tour: Your package includes a scheduled 3-hour visit to Machu Picchu. Within this, we offer an extensive 2.5-hour guided tour by one of our expert guides. Designed to enrich your understanding of this historic site, the tour adapts to your ticket’s entry time and circuit. After the engaging exploration, enjoy 30 minutes of personal time to absorb Machu Picchu’s beauty before continuing your journey.
  • Return Trip Options from Machu Picchu: Regardless of your choice between BY CAR AND BY TRAIN, we include the return trip after your Machu Picchu visit.
    • Train Option: Your train ticket is typically for 2:30 pm, 2:55 pm, or 3:20 pm, depending on availability. To catch the train, return to Aguas Calientes either by a one-hour walk or a $12 bus ride. Spend some time exploring the picturesque town, having lunch, and relaxing. Arrive at the train station 30 minutes before departure. The train journey takes around 1.5 hours to Ollantaytambo, where a Machu Picchu Reservations transfer with your name awaits. You’ll then travel by car back to Cusco for an additional 2 hours, with a drop-off at Plaza Regocijo, marking the end of your tour. You can expect to be back in Cusco around 6:30 pm
    • Car Option: If you choose the car option, start a 3-hour walk from Machu Picchu to the hydroelectric station, beginning no later than 11 am. This walk involves an initial 30-40-minute descent and approximately 1.5-2 hours of flat terrain along train tracks. Arrive at the hydroelectric station by 2:30 pm to catch the 3 pm car. The car journey lasts around 6-7 hours, returning you to Cusco at about 10 pm, with a final stop at Plaza Regocijo in Cusco’s center.
  • Vegetarian and Vegan Dining: We offer the choice of vegetarian and vegan meals, and we can also accommodate dietary restrictions such as gluten-free options. These changes do not incur any additional cost; just let us know when making your reservation.
  • Emergency Provisions: In anticipation of urgent scenarios, the facility ensures that during tours, the tour guide is equipped with an essential oxygen bottle and a comprehensively stocked first aid kit for immediate assistance.

Not Included

Services Not Included in the Salkantay Trek Package and Optional Expenses


We detail below the services and expenses not included in the Salkantay Trek package. These are optional and can be paid directly on-site. Typically, the local community provides these services, and they are common across all companies operating the Salkantay Trek. Our goal is to offer clear and accurate information.

  • Entrance Ticket to Humantay Lagoon: On the first day of the trek, you will visit Humantay Lagoon. This site requires an entrance ticket, which is paid to the local government of Mollepata. The cost is 20 soles for foreigners (approximately 6 dollars) and 10 soles for Peruvians (approximately 3 dollars). Payment is made in soles and in cash at the entrance to the lagoon.
  • Sleeping Bag: If you do not have a suitable sleeping bag for the mountains, you can rent one from us. The sleeping bags we offer are specially designed to withstand the low temperatures of the Salkantay Trek, up to 10 degrees below zero. The rental cost is 10 dollars for the entire route.
  • Trekking Poles: You can rent a pair of professional trekking poles from us. These poles are adjustable according to the type of terrain and are very helpful, especially on steep and rough terrains. They optimize your performance, and the rental cost is 10 dollars for the entire trek.
  • Drinking Water for Bottles: We do not include refilling of water bottles, but we provide water for hot and cold drinks at each meal. For bottle water, you have two options: buy mineral water at small shops along the Salkantay Trail, with prices ranging from 5 to 12 soles per 2.5-liter bottle, or carry a filter or purification tablets for mountain water.
  • Santa Teresa Hot Springs: On the third day, you will have free time and the option to visit the Santa Teresa hot springs. After 3 days of trekking, it’s a great way to relax. If you choose this option, transport is organized from the camp to the baths. The journey takes approximately one hour and costs a total of about 40 soles, including round trip and entry. This payment is made directly on-site.
  • Internet Connection: There is no cell signal from 9 am on the first day until reaching the second camp. At this camp, you can access Wi-Fi for 10 soles. After the third day, you will generally have cell signal and internet access.
  • Showers and Toilets along the Trail: Toilets are available at the campsites at no cost, but locals may charge 1 sol for using theirs along the way. As for showers, the second camp offers hot showers for 10 soles, while cold showers are free. You also have the option to visit the hot springs on the third day or use the hot showers at the Aguas Calientes hostel on the fourth day. Generally, there are no showers available at the first camp due to the low temperatures.
  • Tips: Tips are optional. Feel free to tip or not, but in this tourism service industry, the individuals involved in the course of this trek expect a tip, which occurs not only in our company but also in all trekking companies in Cusco. Everyone working at Machu Picchu Reservations is paid fairly for the work they perform; we even pay much more than companies that charge very high costs for the same trek. Feel free to give a tip or not, but we want to clarify that it is optional, not mandatory.
  • We do not include travel insurance. We suggest acquiring one in your country, as it can be difficult to obtain travel insurance in Peru.

What to Pack

Packing efficiently for the 5-day Salkantay trek is crucial for a comfortable and enjoyable experience. Here’s a detailed packing list to guide you:

ESSENTIALS:

  • Original Passport: Confirm it’s valid throughout your trip.
  • Student Card: Present it at check-in if you booked as student.
  • Daypack: Choose a small, ergonomic pack for comfort on hikes.
  • Water Storage: Carry 1.5-2 liters; consider a Camelbak or similar system.
  • Hiking Boots: Select lightweight options with good traction.
  • Headlamp: A must-have for visibility during early or late hours.

FOR YOUR DUFFEL BAG:

Horses will transport up to 7 kg of your gear, including your sleeping bag.

Clothing:

  • 2-3 moisture-wicking t-shirts
  • 2-3 pairs of hiking pants
  • 3 sets of undergarments
  • 3 sets of hiking socks
  • 1 fleece and 1 warm down jacket for cold nights
  • 1 rain jacket and pants for unpredictable weather
  • 1 sun hat and 1 wool hat for various temperatures
  • Comfortable shoes for camp and sturdy walking boots

Gear:

  • Waterproof gloves (ski gloves are fine)
  • Waterproof jacket/rain poncho for heavy rain
  • Quick-dry towel (larger than what’s provided, if preferred)
  • Small soap bottle for personal hygiene
  • Battery charger (power sources are scarce on the trail)
  • Large plastic bags for organizing and protecting items
  • Sleeping bag (rated for at least -10C for cold nights)
  • Toiletries:
  • Sunscreen and face moisturizer for skin protection
  • Bug spray and hand sanitizer for hygiene
  • Wet wipes for quick clean-ups
  • Toothbrush and paste for oral hygiene
  • Toilet paper for personal use
  • Personal medication and a basic first aid kit

INSIDE YOUR DAYPACK:

For Machu Picchu, bags over 25L are not permitted inside. Larger bags must be stored outside.

  • Water: Bring enough for the first morning; subsequent refills will be provided.
  • Rain gear and fleece: Stay adaptable to changing weather.
  • Camera or smartphone: Capture the memories.
  • Music: An iPhone or similar for entertainment.
  • Hand sanitizer: Maintain cleanliness.
  • Toilet paper and small plastic bag: Manage waste responsibly.
  • Extra Money: For additional purchases and gratuities.
  • Earplugs: For a peaceful rest.

NOTES

  • Waterproofing: Protect your items from rain and dampness.
  • Comfort: Wear well-fitted, broken-in footwear to avoid blisters.
  • Organization: Utilize compartments to keep essentials at hand.

Following this comprehensive list will help ensure a memorable and comfortable experience during your Salkantay trek.

Pricing

At Machu Picchu Reservations, we are committed to providing fair and transparent pricing for the Salkantay trek. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Fair Pricing: Our prices are reasonable, reflecting the true value and offering a quality experience without any hidden costs.
  • Group Tours: You’ll join a group of 12 to 14 people, with a maximum of 16. This ensures lower rates per person and an enriching shared experience.
  • Guaranteed Departure: Regardless of the group’s size, even if it’s just 2 or 3 people, your tour is guaranteed. This offers you security and flexibility in planning.
  • Flexible Booking: You can book for any available date and be part of a group. This flexibility allows you to plan your trip according to your needs.
  • Differentiated Pricing: We offer varied rates for adults, students, and different return options to Cusco (by car or train) after visiting Machu Picchu. You can choose the option that best fits your preferences and budget.

Our approach is transparent and traveler-focused, ensuring you receive exceptional service at a fair price. With Machu Picchu Reservations, your adventure on the Inca Jungle Trail will be memorable and accessible.

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PRICES: SALKANTAY TREK 5 DAYS TO MACHU PICCHU – GROUP SERVICE – SEASONS 2023 AND 2024

SALKANTAY TREK with Return by CAR:

  • Adult: $260 USD per person
  • Student: $240 USD per person (Valid student ID required)
  • Child (Minor): $240 USD per person (For visitors aged 8 to 17 years)

SALKANTAY TREK with Return by TRAIN:

  • Adult: $330 USD per person
  • Student: $310 USD per person (Valid student ID required)
  • Child (Minor): $310 USD per person (For visitors aged 8 to 17 years)

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IMPORTANT CONSIDERATION: Understanding the Difference Between Returning by Car and by Train – Check more details

  • Train Option: Depart from Aguas Calientes between 2:30-3:20 pm (subject to availability). After a 1.5-hour train ride to Ollantaytambo, a transfer awaits to take you back to Cusco over the next 2 hours, arriving around 6:30 pm.
  • Car Option: Begin a 3-hour hike from Machu Picchu to the hydroelectric station by 11 am at the latest to catch the 3 pm car for a 6-7 hour journey back to Cusco, arriving around 10 pm. Both options conclude at Plaza Regocijo.

Select the option that aligns with your preferences, ensuring a remarkable journey through the stunning landscapes of Machu Picchu.

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STUDENT PRICE:

HOW TO ACCESS THE STUDENT PRICE FOR A TOUR TO MACHU PICCHU?

The Peruvian government offers discounts for students on entrance tickets to Machu Picchu. Consequently, in our tours to Machu Picchu, we provide a reduced rate for students. To qualify for this special rate, you must meet the following requirements:

  • Student Age: You must be under 25 years old at the time of your visit to Machu Picchu. This age limit is aimed at benefiting undergraduate students.
  • Material and Format of the Student Card: The card must be a physical plastic document, similar to a credit card, with all the required information printed on it. Cards made of other materials or with information added via stickers or not printed are not accepted.
  • Required Information on the Card: The card must include the following printed information: details of the university, personal information of the student, the student’s photograph, and a validity date not exceeding one year from the date of your visit. For example, if you plan to visit in 2024, the card should not expire before 2025 and must be valid during the visit.
  • Note on the ISIC Card: Although the International Student Identity Card (ISIC) is recognized in many countries, it is not accepted by the Peruvian government for student discounts at Machu Picchu. Just as a passport cannot be replaced by any other type of identification in international procedures, the student card cannot be substituted by an ISIC or any other document for discounts in Peru.

The policy of the Peruvian government is stringent regarding the accreditation of students. It is imperative to present a card that fulfills these criteria to be eligible for student-priced tickets because, upon entering Machu Picchu, you will be required to show the physical student card. If you do not meet these requirements upon arrival at Machu Picchu, there is a significant risk of being denied entry and having to pay the full ticket price, depending on availability. Therefore, ensuring that your student card adheres to Peruvian regulations is crucial before booking your tour to as student Machu Picchu.

How to Book with Machu Picchu Reservation

MAKING YOUR RESERVATION: Booking the Salkantay trek 5 days to Machu Picchu is straightforward. You can use any debit or credit card, with an additional 2.9% fee borne by the customer. For clients in the United States, we offer the option to pay from a bank account without extra charges.

Before Booking Please Read the Details Carefully

  • To Book:
    • 5-Day Salkantay Trek + Train: Priced at $330 per adult and $320 per student or child.
    • 5-Day Salkantay Trek + Car: Priced at $260 per adult and $240 per student or child.

    Reservation Prepayment: To secure your spot for either trek option, a non-refundable prepayment of $180 per person is required. This prepayment is utilized to:

    • Immediately purchase Machu Picchu entry tickets.
    • Ensure acomodations
  • Remaining Balance Payment: If you opt to pay only the prepayment, the remaining balance must be paid upon arrival in Cusco at our Machu Picchu Reservations office, at least 24 hours before the tour starts. The balance can be paid in soles or dollars in cash or by card (with an additional 3.9% charge). You also have the option to pay online on our website with a 2.9% fee.
  • Full Payment Option: You can choose to pay the entire tour cost online at the time of booking. If you need to cancel for any reason, you will be refunded the total amount minus the non-refundable $180 deposit.
  • Recommendations: We strongly advise you to fully understand all booking and cancellation policies before making your payment to ensure that your investment is protected and that you have a seamless booking experience for your adventure on the Salkantay trek.

Please Follow These Steps to Make a Reservation

  • Starting Your Reservation: To book your Salkantay trek experience to Machu Picchu, click on the yellow button that says “BOOK ONLINE.” Doing so will redirect you to our reservation platform.
  •  Date, Number, and Type of Visitor Selection: On the platform, you can select the date you wish to start the tour. You can also make reservations for adults, students, and children as required.
  • Additional Options: You’ll have the opportunity to add extras to your booking, such as tickets for Waynapicchu, Machu Picchu Mountain, or the option to enhance your experience with a Vistadome train journey. You can add these services according to your preferences.
  • Personal Information Form: Next, you will be asked to complete a form with your personal details. It’s important that each participant provides detailed and accurate information.
  • Payment Process: Finally, you will be directed to a secure payment form where you can make your payment online with any type of debit or credit card.
  • Important Note: We recommend reviewing all details and carefully selecting your options to ensure that your reservation perfectly matches your expectations and needs for this unique adventure on the  Salkantay trek.

After booking and completing your payment

  • Upon completing your booking and payment, you will immediately receive an email confirming the transaction. This email will also contain a link allowing you to modify specific details of your reservation if needed. Within the next 24 hours, our reservations team will follow up with a comprehensive email. This email will provide detailed information about your booking, including your Machu Picchu tickets.

Addons

ADDITIONAL OPTIONS TO ADD TO YOUR 5-DAY SALKANTAY TREK PACKAGE 

PRICES:

  • Access to Waynapicchu: $60 US
  • Access to Montaña Machupicchu: $60 US
  • Vistadome Train Upgrade for Return Journey: $35 US
  • Trekking Pole Rental (One Pair): $10 US
  • Sleeping bag Rental: $10 US

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WAYNAPICCHU: THE MAJESTIC MOUNTAIN OF MACHU PICCHU: Waynapicchu is the prominent mountain that forms the famous backdrop in the classic photographs of Machu Picchu. It offers a unique hiking experience and panoramic views, but it’s important to know some details before planning your ascent.

  • CHECK AVAILABILITY: Before scheduling your visit to Waynapicchu, it’s essential to verify ticket availability through the official website provided by the Peruvian government: www.machupicchu.gob.pe. With a daily limit of 400 spots, this link enables you to see the real-time ticket availability, helping you make a well-informed decision. While this link is only for checking availability, don’t worry about the purchase; at Machu Picchu Reservations, we handle the entire ticket acquisition process for you. It’s important to note that if the official government page shows that there’s no availability, this applies universally, as both agencies and individual visitors obtain tickets directly from this official source. Therefore, if the site indicates that there are no spots available, unfortunately, no one will have access to tickets for that particular day.
  • LIMITED ACCESS: Access to Waynapicchu is restricted to 400 daily visitors, divided into four groups of 100 people each, with entry times at 7 a.m., 8 a.m., 9 a.m., and 10 a.m. This limitation helps preserve the site and ensures a safer and more enjoyable experience for everyone.
  • RESERVATION ON THE SALKANTAY TREK: If you’re taking the Salkantay trek, we typically book tickets for the 9 or 10 a.m. schedules, allowing you to visit Waynapicchu after your guided tour of Machu Picchu, but if there is not spaces for the later schudle provabli we will buy the schedule which is available.
  • TIME FOR ASCENT AND STAY: The climb to Waynapicchu generally takes about an hour. Once at the top, we recommend spending about 30 minutes enjoying the views before starting the approximately 45-minute descent. In total, you will need between 2 to 2.5 hours for the complete experience.
  • VIEWS AND RUINS AT THE SUMMIT: The summit of Waynapicchu offers spectacular panoramic views of Machu Picchu and the surrounding landscape. In addition, you will find ancient Inca constructions, including platforms, houses, and enclosures whose purposes are still a subject of study and admiration.
  • SAFETY CONSIDERATIONS: The trail to Waynapicchu can be steep and challenging in some sections. If you suffer from vertigo or fear of heights, be aware that some parts are abrupt and may require the use of your hands to stabilize yourself. In these cases, you might consider other less demanding routes.
  • UNACCOMPANIED BUT SAFE: Although the visit to Waynapicchu does not include a guide, the area is constantly monitored by cameras and park rangers to ensure the safety of all visitors.

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MONTAÑA MACHU PICCHU: THE ALTERNATIVE PEAK AVAILABLE FOR CLIMBING: Montaña Machupicchu, which rises to 3080 meters above sea level, is located to the south of the famous Inca citadel of Machu Picchu. To better understand its geographical position, note that the iconic photographs of the Inca citadel are taken from the base of Montaña Machupicchu. It’s essential to distinguish between Montaña Machupicchu and the Inca citadel of Machu Picchu. Machu Picchu is the renowned archaeological site visible in most photographs and serves as the area’s central attraction, while Montaña Machupicchu is a separate, accessible peak. If you wish to climb Montaña Machupicchu, you must purchase a ticket. This peak offers unique views and a different perspective of the landscape surrounding the historic citadel.

  • CHECK AVAILABILITY: Before scheduling your visit to Montaña Machupicchu, it’s essential to confirm the availability of tickets. You can do this through the official Peruvian government website: www.machupicchu.gob.pe. Each day, only 400 tickets are available: 200 for entry to Montaña Machupicchu between 7 and 8 a.m., and another 200 for entry between 8 and 9 a.m. For those planning to climb this mountain during their Salkantay trek tour, we usually purchase tickets for the latter schedule, allowing you to ascend Montaña Machupicchu following your guided tour of the citadel. Booking in advance is highly recommended due to the limited number of spaces. If you’re interested in including this mountain in your Salkantay trek tour, it’s advisable to arrange this when you book your Salkantay trek to ensure availability.
  • CLIMB AND STAY TIME: The total time for a visit to Machu Picchu Mountain is estimated to be between 3 to 3.5 hours. This includes around 1.5 hours for the ascent, 30 minutes to take in the breathtaking views at the summit, and approximately 1 hour for the descent. The path is broader and not as steep compared to other trails but is predominantly made up of stone steps, showcasing an authentic Inca trail. At the peak, you’re rewarded with stunning vistas of the Inca citadel of Machu Picchu, and the encompassing landscape of valleys, rivers, and mountains. On clear days, you can also spot the final segment of the famous Inca Trail.

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UPGRADE TO VISTADOME TRAIN

  • On the Salkantay Trek tour, the Return by TRAIN option includes a standard train ticket from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo, typically aboard the Expedition or Voyager trains. These trains provide a comfortable, clean, and scenic journey. However, for an even more enhanced experience, you have the option to upgrade to the Vistadome train. The Vistadome boasts expansive windows and a glass ceiling, offering unparalleled panoramic views and a unique way to admire the landscape. Additionally, the Vistadome provides onboard entertainment, including music and dance performances, creating a lively and memorable journey. Should you choose to upgrade to the Vistadome train, an additional fee of $35 per person will be added to your Salkantay Trek tour cost. This upgrade is perfect for those seeking a more luxurious and engaging travel experience back from their adventure.

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TREKKING POLES RENTAL:

  • We recommend the use of trekking poles on the Salkantay Trail, as they greatly assist with the long distances covered daily and the numerous slopes encountered. For instance, the second day of the trek involves a 15 km descent from 4700 m to 2900 m over varied terrain including dirt, gravel, and rocks. If you don’t have your own poles, you can rent a pair of professional trekking poles from us for $10. These adjustable poles can be tailored to the terrain conditions and can be compacted and attached to your backpack in less demanding areas. While they are not strictly necessary for individuals in good physical condition, they provide additional support and can enhance your hiking experience.If you’re interested in renting trekking poles, you can add them when booking your tour or rent them upon arrival in Cusco at the Machu Picchu Reservations office for $10. These poles not only offer support on challenging terrains but also help to reduce the strain on your knees and improve balance during your adventure, making them a valuable addition to your trekking gear.

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SLEEPING BAG RENTAL:

  • If you lack a sleeping bag for your trek, Machu Picchu Reservations offers a rental service. You can reserve one in advance with your package or opt to rent upon reaching Cusco. The cost is $10 for the entire trek duration. Our sleeping bags are tailored for the Salkantay trek’s chilly temperatures, enduring up to minus 10 degrees Celsius and include an extra liner for added warmth. This ensures a cozy and comfortable sleep, enhancing your nighttime experience throughout the adventure.

Important information for the Trip

5 DAYS SALKANTAY TREK SUMMARY

  • Start point: Cusco, hotel pick up from 4:30 to 5:00 am
  • Pick up: at Machu Picchu reservations office at 5:00 am
  • Ending point: Cusco city center – Plaza Regocijo
  • Duration: 5 days – 4 nights
  • Departure: Daily departures
  • Group size: Up to 16
  • Duffle Bag: Included (7 kg capacity)
  • Machu Picchu tickets: included in the package -CHECK DETAILS HERE-
  • Meals included: 5 Breakfasts, 4 lunches, 4 dinners
  • Vegetarian/vegan: Food available upon request at no extra charge
  • Free storage: Available  DETAILS HERE
  • High season: From april to october

TripAdvisor Reviews

Machu Picchu Reservations has received excellent reviews on TripAdvisor . These reviews highlight our commitment to quality and customer satisfaction. Thank you for trusting us and for your valuable feedback!", we have 5,692 reviews

Elea
Elea
2024-05-13
INCROYABLE Je recommande 100% Machu Picchu réservations! Une des meilleures expérience de ma vie avec un personnel incroyable ! Notre guide Alfredo nous a soutenu, a été à notre rythme et nous a fait découvrir des endroits hors du commun. L’organisation était au rendez vous. Le prix très abordable pour ce qu’on vécu! Je remercie toute l’équipe de Machu Picchu Reservations pour leur disponibilité et pour l’encadrement de ce super trek. Si vous devez faire un trek, foncez avec cette agence !
Matthew H
Matthew H
2024-05-13
Trip of a Lifetime This was the best trip I've ever been on. Unbelievable sights for all 5 days and so many amazing people to meet. The company took great care of us during our 5 days and 4 nights of trekking. The chefs were incredible and made great food for each meal of the day, I was really impressed! The hike itself was not too difficult. The altitude of course makes it difficult on breathing, but terrain was quite easy. There were a few spots that were extremely rocky and easy to sprain an ankle. Our tool guide, Juel, was incredible and really made our trip. He was so knowledgeable about the Inca's history and was very interesting to learn from. He would let everyone go at their own pace, always making sure everyone was okay and safe. I cannot stress the impact that he made on our trip. I would highly recommend Juel to anyone who wants the best possible experience of Salkantay. Andre at the Cusco office is also a great guy, very helpful! Overall, we had an amazing time with Machu Picchu Reservations and would highly highly recommend the tour group!
Simona I
Simona I
2024-05-12
Super trip We had an amazing tour, time and views. The information our guide was hearttouching. And all spots he show us, were so worth it the steps
Maria I
Maria I
2024-05-12
Super trip! We had an amazing time! The hike and tour in generell was just magical! Angel the guide was very kind, he gave us a lot of super interesting informations and even if it was my second time- this trip was favorite and I am taking a lot of nice memories :) I would recommend it to everybody that does not have a lot of time - worth it so much more than a one day trip!
Lucy H
Lucy H
2024-05-12
Amazing trip! The 5 day Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu was absolutely amazing. We had great accommodation each night with incredible views of the mountains, and each day was something different (lagoon, mountains, jungle, etc.). A special shout out to our guide, Billy, who was so friendly, passionate and knowledgable, and the chefs, who prepared us 3 incredible meals every single day of the trek. A trip I won’t forget for a while!
Paradise756139
Paradise756139
2024-05-12
The best 5 days What an amazing and rewarding five days with Machu Picchu reservations. My sister and I are vegan and all the food was amazing and plenty of it. The chefs went above and beyond. Aurelio was the best guide, we feel so lucky that we had him for the 5 days. He really made the trip! We had a great group of people who were so supportive and encouraging. Despite it being challenging at times we laughed so much!
Jacynthe P
Jacynthe P
2024-05-12
2 day Machu Picchu tour - amazing experience We were lucky enough to get Angel as our guide. He was amazing, super informative and captivating. Couldn't have asked for a better experience!
Pranav P
Pranav P
2024-05-11
Amazing experience Had great time at Salkantay Trekking and Machu Picchu for 5 days. Steven was excellent guide. He indulged us in inka culture, had supported so well in altitude sickness and intense hike. He took fabulous pictures and supported our vegetarian food need. Overall it was great fun with making new friends and memories. Highly recommend if you want intense hiking experience at Salkantay.
Jet S
Jet S
2024-05-11
Best andventure ever! This was honestly the best experience of my life. I had 5 days of adventure, stunning views and great company. It was sad that the time flew by as every day was such a blast! Machu Picchu Reservations is a great company to choose for the Salkantay Trek. They were very organized, food was delicious, sleeping arrangement was excellent and the guides create a supportive and amazing vibe! Aurelio was the best guide and it was bittersweet to say goodbye after such a great experience. I would highly recommend Machu Picchu Reservations and above all Aurelio as your guide!

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