Salkantay & Inca Trail to Machu Picchu 6D/5N
The Salkantay & Inca Trail to Machu Picchu Tour is for the adventurous tourist who wants to enjoy the scenery and experience one of the greatest attractions of the Cusco region during their limited time in Peru. Taking different paths and avoiding the more crowded trekking trails, this route offers breathtaking natural scenery combined with historical and archaeological sites.
This tour offers two levels of hiking: easy/moderate or moderate/challenging. You will be able to choose either option at any time.
We will observe the flight of the Condor, behold the majesty of the sacred Salkantay and Humantay mountains, and visit the Humantay Lake and the Salkantay Pass at 4,664m/15,300ft.
Our adventure continues along the famous Inca Trail to Machu Picchu; the ancient Inca site unknown to the outside world until 1911 when Hiram Bingham brought it to international attention. Situated in the heart of the Peruvian Andes, the citadel is surrounded by lush cloud forest and is a remarkable vestige of the Inca Empire at the pinnacle of its glory.
Inca trail to Wiñaywayna
Cultural experience at Misminay Andean community
Condors in their natural habitat
Moray & Maras sald poat mines
The historic Inca City of Machu Picchu
Salkantay Pass 4,664m / 15,300ft
- Tour length6 days/5 nights
- DeparturesMarch to December
- ClimateSeasonal (see FAQ)
- Group size2-8 (per guide)
- Start and finishCusco
- Tour styleActive Adventurous
- Comfort levelSuperior
- Include3 nights in Ecocamp domes1 nights in Inkaterra or similar1 night at Aranwa hotel or similar at Sacred ValleyEntrance to the Inca trail and Machu PicchuAll in-tour ground transportationTransfers and train ticketsAll meals during tourSpecialized guidesDrinking water
- Not IncludedFlights to Peru and CuscoOptional activitiesLaundry servicesAlcoholic beveragesTipping to the local staff
Day 1: Cusco – Chonta Condors Valley - Pincopata Ecocamp
This first day will give participants time to adapt to the altitude and begin to prepare physically for the following days hiking. We will pick you up from your hotel at 8am for the trip to the Condor Viewing Point at Chonta. Along the way, we will stop and explore one of two archaeological sites: Killarumiyoc or Tarahuasi. These sites were important ritual sites during the height of the Inca Empire and still hold great significance today in Quechua society.
While driving further, you will enjoy the landscape of the Limatambo valley and spot small farming communities nestled among the valley. Upon reaching Chonta, we will walk for approximately an hour along a narrow track with spectacular views of the Apurimac Canyon. We are almost certain to have the site completely to ourselves as most tourists tend to visit the area later in the afternoon.
At the viewing point, there will be time to relax and observe the condors soaring over the canyon, while a specially prepared boxed lunch will be served. After lunch, we will return to our vehicle and continue to our final destination, Pincopata Ecocamp.
Upon arrival at Pincopata Ecocamp, we will be greeted with a lovely refreshment made from seasonal fruits and taken to our domes to enjoy a hot shower and a deserved rest.
If rest is not your thing, you may prefer to walk around the camp. We will end the day with a superb dinner consisting of fresh and locally sourced foods typical of Peruvian-cuisine.
- Driving Distance: 132.5 km / 82,8 mi
- Driving Time: 3.5 hours
- Altitude Chonta: 3,400 m/11,152 f
- Altitude Pincopata: 2,850 m / 9,348 f
Day 2: Pincopata Ecocamp – Tilca & Choquechurco – Pincopata Ecocamp
After breakfast, we continue along the road for 25 minutes to the community of Tilca, from hire we start our hike to the top of one of the sacred mountains, a gradual up-hill on meddle of typical vegetation and spectacular views of the valley and mountains before arrive to the top where we can see some stairs and platforms with religious proposes and retaining walls.
After this experience we start descending to Marcahuaylla, from where we continue another short walk to access the archaeological remains of Choquechurco (Place where Gold is placed). This sacred place, unknown to many, is on our list of remote sites we like to visit. Situated among a forest of native Polylepis trees, this abandoned site will make you feel like a true explorer. We will discover remains of religious sites and settlements; carved boulders, small squares, and Inca walls covered with moss and vegetation.
From this place, we will have views of Humantay Mountain, the Valley of Limatambo, Apurimac, and the town of Mollepata. Surrounded by remarkable scenery, we will stop to have lunch at this site before continuing the descent to our Pincopata Ecocamp.
- Driving Distance: 20.4 km / 12.7 mi (round trip)
- Driving Time: 30 minutes (rt)
- Hiking distance: 10 km / 6.25 mi
- Hiking time: 4-5 hrs
- Altitude Tilca: 3,790 m / 12,431 f
- Altitude Choquechurco: 3,200 m / 10,500 ft.
- Altitude Pincopata: 2,850 m / 9,348 ft.
Day 3: Pincopata Ecocamp - Soray – Pincopata Ecocamp
After breakfast, we’ll drive 15 minutes to the start of our trail at Marcoccasa. From here, we begin with a short uphill walk before continuing our hike along an aqueduct overlooking the spectacular Rio Blanco Valley and the snow-capped peaks of the Humantay and Salkantay Mountains. Surrounded by a spectacular view, you will enjoy a delicious box lunch.
During the afternoon, we offer an optional hike to Lake Humantay, a lake nestled at the base of the southern face of the mountain. This 1.5-hour hike will present breath-taking views of the glacial lake of the Humantay Mountain. If you prefer a more laid-back afternoon, you can schedule a soothing massage or simply take in the breath-taking views surrounding our camp. We´ll spend the night at Pincopata Camp.
- Driving time to trail head: 15 min
- Distance to trailhead: 8 km /5 mi
- Trekking distance: 14 km/8.75 mi
- Trekking time: 4- 5 hrs
- Altitude Soray: 3,883m / 12,737ft
- Altitude Humantay Lake: 4,298 m /14,100 f
- Altitude Pincopata: 2,850 m / 9,348 ft.
- Hiking Level: Moderate - Challenging
After breakfast, we´ll drive to Soraypampa where is the beginning of our trek. From the bottom of the valley gradually starting to ascend while crossing several small pampas. The challenging final climb to the Abra Pass will be rewarded with spectacular views of Salkantay Mountain. At the pass you will have time to celebrate our accomplishment before descending to a warmer spot to enjoy a box lunch. Later, we will return to Soraypampa to meet our transport.
After boarding our transport, you´ll back to our comfortable Pincopata Ecocamp, and enjoy a marvelous dinner.
- Hiking distance: 12 km / 7.5 mi
- Hiking time: 7-8 hrs. round trip
- Hiking level: challenging
- Altitude Abra Salkantay: 4,664 m / 15,300 ft.
- Altitude Soraypampa: 3,883m / 12,737ft
- Altitude Pincopata: 2,850 m / 9,348 ft
- Driving distance: 40 km / 26 ml (round trip)
Day 4: Pincopata Ecocamp – Sacred Valley
We begin with breakfast at the camp and then travel through small Quechua villages in the Sacred Valley to Moray; a construction of circular terraces where the Incas conducted ancient agriculture experiments, a unique location of real historic significance. After the guided visit, we will continue to one of the local communities where we will enjoy a delicious tipical lunch, the locals will be happy to shere their experiences and show us their day to day activities.
We will continue our tour driving to Maras salt poads, here we will do a short hike with the views of the mine and the valley before meeting with our transportation to drive us to our hotel.
- Transfer distance: 130 km / 81.25mi
- Transfer time: 2.5-3 hrs.
- Hike in Moray : 1.6 km / 1 mi.
- Hike in Maras : 2.5 km /1.56 mi.
Day 5: Sacred Valley- Km 104 – Inca Trail – Machu Picchu
Early breakfast before be transfer to Ollanta train station. Here, we will take a train that will take us to the km 104 (Chachabamba), check point of the Inca Trail, a starting point of one of the trail that goes to Wuiñay Huayna (forever joung) a importan arqueological site on the system of Inca trails to Machu Picchu.
After explore and enjoying the landscape and arquitecture we will continue our hike along the stone paved trail to the sun gate where we have our first glimp of the archeological site of the Llacta (town) of Machu Picchu. There will be time to relax and learn about the Incas before countinue down to the entrance where we will take our bus to the village of Aguas Calientes (Machu Picchu Pueblo) to our hotel, where we can rest or explore the village of Aguas Calientes until dinner.
- Transfer distance: 29 km / 18.12 mi.
- Transfer time: 1.30 hour.
- Machu Picchu Altitude: 2,000m / 6,560f
- Inca Trail hiking distance: 11.3 km /6.84 m
- Hike: 6 hrs
Day 6: Machu Picchu – Cusco
After breakfast, our local guide will accompany us by bus to the Machu Picchu archaeological site. After check in at the park entrance, we will be escorted by our guide through these unique Inca ruins where we will uncover the mysteries of the sacred city of Machu Picchu during an in-depth walking tour.
Other options during this visit include climbing Machu Picchu Mountain or Huayna Picchu Mountain. These climbs are physically challenging, but the magnificent views from the peak of both mountains make the effort worthwhile. Please tell us if you want to climb one of the mountains; we need to book this for you in advance.
We will then have lunch at Sanctuary Lodge. After, we will take the bus down to reconnect with your luggage, take the train to Ollantaytambo, and then transfer to a vehicle for the drive back to Cusco.
- Altitude Aguas Calientes: 2,000 m/ 6,560 pies
- Altitude Machu Picchu: 2430 m / 7972.44 pies
- Altitude Ollantaytambo: 2792 m / 9160.11 pies
- Distance Aguas Calientes-Ollantaytambo: 32 km / 19.8 mi