A 6,272m peak, Salkantay Nevado, is one of the most beautiful mountains in the Andes and one of Peru’s best and well-known treks. Right in the heart of the Andes surrounding the Cusco region, this trek is within easy reach of Cusco itself.
Over the course of four days, you’ll pass by a beautiful glacial lake; up and over the Salkantay Trek pass (4,650m), and descend down into the dense vegetation of the Peruvian cloud forest. Directly to the north of Salkantay lies Machu Picchu, which is at the end of a ridge that extends down from this mountain.
Experience the glacial lake of Humantay
Cross over the 4,660m Salkantay pass before a descent down into cloud forest
Visit the lesser-known picturesque ruins of Llactapata
Explore the fabled sanctuary of Machu Picchu
Relax and enjoy the views on the train ride back from Machu Picchu
Maximum Elevation – 4,650m
Start/Finish – Cusco/Cusco
Trek Style – Camping
Best Season – May to October
Reaching the citadel from the back entrance of the valley site is a stunning way to arrive and appreciate the citadel from a different perspective. The Salkantay Nevada Trek proximity to Machu Picchu makes trekking around it an excellent alternative to the oversubscribed Inca Trail.
Breakfast x 4
Lunch x 5
Dinner x 4
Private Transport – collection & drop-off
Professional bilingual guide
Horsemen & mules
All camping equipment (Sleeping bags to hire + Walking sticks)
Accommodation in Aguas Calientes – x1 Night
Machu Picchu Entrance Ticket
Round-trip bus tickets
Return Train to Cusco & transfer to hotel
Hotels before & after (can be organised as part of trip)
Tips for crew
Any additional extras
Domestic flights (can be organised as part of trip)
|Joining Arrangements||There will be a pre-trek briefing held usually the evening before departure, at your hotel, to go over the details of the trek and any specific requirements not already captured.|
|Food & Water||Prior to setting off we recommend you steer clear of street food and only eat in good restaurants, to avoid any stomach complaints. Likewise with tap water, it is largely untreated, please only consume bottled water only or sterilised water if you have the right equipment.|
|Special Diets||We’ll ensure that we cater for all of your dietary needs, at the point of booking we’ll collect this information from you. We can secure special menu requests also for your trek party.|
|Trekking Crew||We are able to customise our treks to suit you, but usually our treks are guided by a professional bilingual guide, mountain cook, arriero (horseman) and mules to carry all equipment (passenger horses also available on request). They become a large part of your trekking expedition and it’s a great experience working together.|
This is a really important part of your trip planning process, please find a link below which explains a little more about preparing for altitude. Altitude Preparation
|Machu Picchu||An excursion to Machu Picchu is included as part of your trip, including professional bilingual guide, entrance tickets, return trip bus tickets, Huayna Picchu & Machu Picchu Mountains (mountain climbs to be confirmed on reservation) & your return train ticket to Cusco. To be confirmed on reservation.|
|Covid-19 (Coronavirus)||We are working with the latest protocols issued by the Ministerio de Salud (Ministry of Health) to ensure our operations are safe and compliant for the future. We also have access to on-call health services for your time with us.|
|Covid-19 (Useful Links)||World Health Organisation | World Health Organisation – Peru | Covid-19 Data – Peru | Covid-19 Daily Statistics|
|Available Discounts||Throughout 2022 we’re offering a 15% discount for each member of a group larger than 4+|
|Reservation||Please contact us to reserve your trek and we will send you our deposit & payment options.|
|Customer Service||Please feel free to contact us at any point before your trip for any queries or problems.|
You’ll leave your lodging early on, and a short three hours later arriving in Mollepata where you’ll disembark for a warm breakfast. When ready, hopping in the back of the truck, Peruvian-style, or take a car depending on what is available that day. The road is carved along a steep hill with scenic views en route to Soray Pampa.
Soray Pampa is located at the foot of two large mountains and is where we’ll spend the night in a newly-built wood cabin or camp. After a short rest, we grab our day packs and go on an amazing hike up to a glacier lake that will test your lungs, warm you up, and pay off with amazing views. We’ll return to camp tired yet satisfied, ready for a great dinner and a good night’s rest.
Tomorrow will be a big day!
Waking up early at the foot of Salkantay mountain is breathtaking. A hot breakfast awaits, which you’ll enjoy while the horses are being loaded up with your gear. The Salkantay trek starts early and climbs gradually toward the pass. You’ll take breaks, when needed, and provide plenty of water and snacks. The views are dramatic, and it’s a great feeling and a privilege to be so close to such beauty.
After a few hours, you’ll arrive at the pass (4660m). The air is thin and the weather unpredictable, so we won’t linger too long. You may have the chance to witness small avalanches in the surrounding mountains, and you’ll be able to capture some great photos before beginning the descent.
The downhill is long and steady, and the views are just as stunning. It’s a beautiful hike through the high Andes and the variety of vegetation, birds, and views makes it one of the best in the world. After around 9 hours (including breaks), you’ll arrive at a camp called Chaullay. It’s located at the end of the Salkantay Valley and connects us to La Playa, Santa Teresa, and our goal—Machu Picchu.
Dinner is served, and the remainder of the evening is yours to relax!
After an early morning breakfast, we’ll head on our way. Today we hike along the Salkantay river to La Playa. The hike is through a high cloud forest, and the views, the warmth, the birds, and the plants are varied and brilliant. The hike is between four and five hours and lunch is waiting for you at the end. After lunch, we’ll get a rest as we go by car to our camp. After dropping off our bags we rest up and enjoy the day. Machu Picchu gets closer and closer.
Start your day with a fresh cup of coffee and enjoy a breakfast sourced from local foods in the area, such as plantains, yuca or avocados (depending on the season). Today, you’ll hike towards Machu Picchu via a section of the ancient Inca trail. The trail leads you up and over a pass from where you’ll have spectacular views of the ruins and the peaks of Huayna Picchu and Machu Picchu.
The ruins of Llactapata are less visited and you will see few people here while you gaze at Machu Picchu from a distance. Enjoy the solitude, as tomorrow there may be around 2000 people with you in Machu Picchu. After the ruins, hike twenty minutes to a small lodge where we’ll have a freshly cooked lunch. After a great meal, descend towards the river and arrive in time for the 3 pm or 4:35 train. Time to sit back and enjoy the view.
Once in Aguas Calientes, your guide will take you to your hotel before providing a quick briefing for the day ahead and your tour of Machu Picchu. Tonight, you will dine in style in one of the best local restaurants in Aguas Calientes. A full 3-course meal with an appetizer, main dish, and a dessert. Be sure to go to bed early tonight, so you can get an early start tomorrow.
If you’re up bright and early, you’ll get to see the sun lighten up Machu Picchu. Follow a hiking trail up to the sanctuary for an early view and to avoid the crowds. You’ll have a fully guided tour, and for those who have requested it, Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu mountain is on the list. Enjoy your time here. Explore the ruins, have a snack, take some photos, or take a nap on the terraces. At the end of your time exploring, you can take the bus back down to Aguas Calientes and wait for your return train to Cusco or Ollantaytambo where transport will be waiting for you to take you to your hotel.
(Originally scheduled to do Choquequirao to Machu Picchu)
During the replanned trip for the Cusco section, we really enjoyed the content of the entire trip. There were some communication issues at times as there was a lot of information to absorb but overall we had a great time!
Accommodation – Excellent
Transport – Good (slightly difficult transit to Santa Teresa due to conditions)
Food – Excellent
Attractions/Locations – Excellent
Safety – Great
Tour Guide – Good (some communication barriers)
Guide Knowledge – Excellent
Planning Process – Excellent
Payment Process – Excellent