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Salkantay Trek 5D/4N

5 Days

23 reviews
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Salkantay Trek 5D/4N

Salkantay Trek 5D/4N

5 Days

23 reviews


This trek takes you around Mount Salkantay, the second largest mountain in the Cusco region (6271m/20,568ft), On the first night, you’ll camp within clear sight of the snow-capped peak of Salkantay mountain. Connecting the city of Mollepata, Cusco with Machu Picchu, the Salkantay Trek is an ancient and remote footpath located in the same region as the Inca Trail where massive snow-capped mountains collide with lush tropical rain forests.

The second day will be the longest day of the tour, and while you work a bit harder to get there, the views at the top are well worth the hike! Then you’ll walk to reach the famous Apacheta Pass at 4,600m/15,088ft (meanwhile, the Inca Trail’s ‘Dead Woman’s Pass’ is only 4,200m/13,776ft). We will be hiking at 2,200m/7217ft higher than Machu Picchu! It is not strenuous or very steep; here we descend into a more tropical area, passing Andenes and Chaullay.

We`ll take the forty five minute train ride from the famous Hydro Electric Dam and spend the rest of the evening relaxing in Aguas Calientes – ‘Hot Waters’ in Spanish. Early in the morning you’ll take the bus (or walk) to Machu Picchu for your privately guided tour– a well deserved reward– but many say the trek is a prize in itself! Then afterwards you will have the chance to explore the ancient city on your own – and discover your own Machu Picchu.



At 6:00 am, we depart by private transport to Mollepata, a small town at 2,850 mts. After a three hour scenic journey through Izcuchaca and Limatambo, we’ll stop for breakfast with panoramic views of Salkantay in the Cordillera of Vilcanota. We’ll be able to see spectacular views of snow-capped Vilcabamba, the colorful village of Mollepata, and the lush Apurimac River Valley. At this point, due to poor road conditions, we’ll transfer to another vehicle. After passing Cruzpata (3200 mts), then Challacancha, we’ll arrive to our trailhead in Sayllapata at 3,600 mts where we shall meet our arrieros and trekking staff. We will commence with a gradual climb for about 2 and a half hours through a pristine Andean valley landscape before arriving at Soraypampa. After visiting a spectacular glacial lake we’ll have lunch. After lunch, we’ll gently climb for approximately 2-3 hours through more unspoiled Andean valley enroute Salkantaypampa. This first camp is located at 3,950 mts.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
  • Accommodation: Camping.
  • Maximum Altitude: 3950mts.
  • Minimum Altitude: 2850mts.
  • Distance Traveled: 12km approx.


After an early breakfast we’ll begin a moderate ascent for 3 hours to reach the Apacheta Pass at 4,590mts. From here, we can appreciate spectacular views of Cusco’s second highest peak, the stunning snow capped Mount Salkantay (6,264 mts) and the snow capped mountains Humantay and Huayanay. At the Apacheta Pass you can leave a rock carried from the bottom as a present from you to the Apacheta. (In Incan times, they used to leave their shoes, clothes, jewels or simply a rock as an offering.) There is an option to walk 40 min. from the pass to see an amazing lake of Soraycocha.

We’ll continue 2 hours downhill to have lunch in Huayracmachay. Depending on group ability, weather and walking conditions, the guide will decide whether to camp a 2-3 hour downhill walk in Rayan-niyoc or travel 2km further to camp at Collpapampa (2920 mts) for more experienced trekkers.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
  • Accommodation: Camping.
  • Maximum Altitude: 4590 mts.
  • Minimum Altitude: 2920 mts.
  • Distance Travelled: 16km to Rayan-Niyoc or 20km to Chaullay.


After Breakfast, we’ll say goodbye and thank our arrieros. They will arrive at La Playa before us, leaving the equipment with other trusted staff, and return back to Soraypampa. We’ll start trekking at 7am with 3 hours of easy hiking from Collpapampa, where we will enter a high Jungle zone called Ceja de Selva. Here we will see different kinds of fruits, flowers, and birds, plus coca and banana trees. You will be able to shower in a waterfall, take pictures, and with luck, catch a glimpse of the famous Peruvian National Bird “Gallito de las Rocas”. We stop at Lluscamayo 2,400m for lunch and free time to rest before the 3 hour walk to our last campsite in La Playa 2,350mts. This village has electricity and a small shop.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
  • Accommodation: Camping.
  • Maximum Altitude: 2920mts.
  • Minimum Altitude: 2350mts.
  • Distance Traveled: 15km approx.


Approx 7:30am we’ll begin our trek to the village Lucmabamba, where we’ll see the remains of part of the Inka trail. Along this trail, we shall see coffee, banana and passion fruit plantations and a lovely view of the Santa Teresa Valley. After climbing for 3-4 hrs to reach Llaqtapata, 2,700mts, we’ll enjoy some free time to rest and observe the mountain of Machupicchu from afar. Then 2 more hours of continuous descent to the Hydroelectric Plant at 1,870m where we’ll have a final lunch with our staff. We’ll continue on to Aguas Calientes town with only our guides. This is your chance to say goodbye and express your appreciation. If you’d like to tip the cook and staff, this would be the appropriate time.

At 4:30pm we will take a 45 minute train journey to Aguas Calientes, 2,000mts, where dinner and a comfy bed in a hostel await you.

* Walking poles recommended for the 2 final hours downhill. Optional evening bath in the hotsprings 10 minutes walk from the town.*

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
  • Accommodation: Hostel.
  • Maximum Altitude: 2350mts.
  • Minimum Altitude: 2000mts.
  • Distance Travelled:12km approx.


Early walk (approximately 1.5 hours from Aquas Calientes) or bus to the citadel of Machupicchu,with a 3 hour guided tour and time after for solo exploration. Optional climb up the mountain Huayna Picchu, if booked in advance, the Temple of the Moon, or the Gate of the Sun. Around 1pm, we’ll begin back down the steps to Aguas Calientes for a buffet lunch and at approx. 16:00 hrs we take our return train to Ollantaytambo with bus connection to Cusco city, arriving around 9:00 pm.

  • Meals: Breakfast.


  • Ceremony with your tour guide and locals.
  • Collection from your hotel from 05:30 am.
  • Private vehicle to Mollepata-Cruzpata. (start of our trek)
  • 2 person Igloo tents (large and comfortable) and a roll pad mattress.
  • English speaking experienced professional mountain guide.(2 Guides for a group of 9-17 participants)
  • 6 kilos porterage service for your personal items. (ie. extra clothes, mattress, sleeping bag to be carried by mules)
  • Full meals: 5 Breakfast, 4 Lunches, 4 Dinners. (Vegetarian, vegan or special diet meals upon request)
  • Dining and cooking tents with tables and chairs. Chef and cooking equipment and kitchen tent. First-aid kit including emergency oxygen tank.
  • Horses/donkeys to carry tents, food, cooking equipment. Hot water for washing purposes.
  • Boiled water to fill your bottles.
  • Train from Hidroelectrica to Aguas Calientes.
  • 3 star Hotel in Aguas Calientes– Double or Triple Accommodation.
  • Expedition Tourist Train from Aguas Calientes to Ollanta and private transport to Cusco.
  • Admission Ticket to Machu Picchu Archaeological Complex.
  • Guided tour in Machu Picchu, time to explore on your own.
  • Round Trip Bus Tickets.

No Included

  • Snacks, recommended: chocolate bars, dried fruits, nuts, etc.
  • Lunch and dinner on the 5th day, drinks, bottled water.
  • Tips for your guide, cook and staff are optional, though is a great gesture of gratitute and a wonderful source of esteem for each individual.
  • Ticket to Huaynapicchu mountain. (trail is well marked)

What to bring

  • Backpack.
  • Sturdy Hiking boots.
  • Warm clothes and trekking pants. (not jeans)
  • Layers for variable temperatures, especially at night.
  • Flash light with extra batteries.
  • Camera, extra film & batteries.
  • Sunprotection : sunscreen, sun hat, sunglasses.
  • Thermals : wool socks, gloves, scarf and wool hat for cold nights.
  • Insect repellent.
  • Rain poncho, a good rain jacket.
  • Plastic bags, especially in wet season, and plastic garbage bags to line your backpack.
  • Toiletries / toilet paper / small towel.
  • Bathing clothes for the hot springs.
  • Water bottle : water purifying tablets optional.
  • Personal medical kit with a simple whistle.
  • Original passport and ISIC student card if applicable.
  • Extra money for souvenirs, drinks.
  • Trekking poles.


Number of persons Price per person
2 $735.00
3 $695.00
4 $630.00
5 $570.00
6 $535.00
7 $515.00
8 $495.00

At PumaPath, your comfort and safety are of our utmost concern. Therefore, we provide all necessary camping equipment for your trek. Included in prices are: sleeping tent, rollmat and pillow for your comfort. Please feel free to bring your own sleeping bag if you prefer.

5 Day Salkantay Including Horsemen for your gear (7kg)

  • $ 575 per person – Group.

Private Service Prices:

  • 2 people : US$735 per person.
  • 3 people : US$695 per person.
  • 4 people : US$630 per person.
  • 5 people : US$570 per person.
  • 6 people : US$535 per person.
  • 7 people : US$515 per person.
  • 8+ people : US$495.

Discounts :

  • Student Discount (with valid ISIC card) – $20.

Extras :

  • Sleeping Bag (4 season) – $25. (Maximum size 1.95m / 6´4″)
  • Pair of Walking poles – $25.
  • Air Matress – $25.
  • Single Tent Supplement US$75.
  • Personal Mule (half) to carry 7kg of personal items US$90.
  • Full Mule to carry 14kg of personal items US$180.

Group Bookings:

  • Bookings of 6 people or more get a free group Sacred Valley tour. (Does not include tourist ticket or meals)

Travel Guide


TRAIN TIMES: On the fifth day we will take the 2:55, 4.42 or 6:45PM train from Aguas Calientes to Ollantayatambo and then we will transfer you back to Cusco and your hotel.

HUAYNAPICCHU MOUNTAIN: Please, if you are thinking of climbing Huaynapicchu mountain you must book this at the same time as your Salkantay trek. Only 400 people can hike Huaynapicchu per day. You will climb it on your own after the tour in Machu Picchu around 10:00 am. The price is $25 per person.

HORSES OR PORTERS: On this trek we provide horses to carry food and camping equipment, but there will be one cook and his assistant, two horsemen, and one porter who are picking up what other hikers throw away as they go. You will have a personal allowance of 7kg for your gear. This will not be available during the day as the horsemen will be ahead of the group.

OUR GUIDES: Most of our guides began as porters before they went to Cusco University and Institute where they learned about Incan history. They are always learning in order to be the best guide they can be. They all speak English beautifully, along with Spanish and Quechua, the Inca language. They are all able to communicate with natives from around the area and will have lots of history to share with you along the way.

OUR FOOD: Definitely one of the highlights of the tour is the food. It is always fresh and most of it is organic. There is always a lot to eat and lots of options including vegetables, meat, chicken, fish and other types of protein and carbohydrates. Everyone sits down to eat together and we go out of our way to accommodate all dietary requirements including vegetarian options and any food allergies. We do not provide any alcoholic drinks on the trek but if you would like you can bring your own.

OUR EQUIPMENT: We provide 4 man tents for only 2 people and foam mattresses for everyone. Our dining equipment includes a spacious dining tent, tables and chairs, plates and utensils. We do not supply walking sticks, but they can be rented from Puma Path. We bring an extra blanket for all our hikers for those especially cold nights. Just ask and your guide will provide you with this.

Please note that if you are over 1.95 meters / 6´4″ tall then you won´t be able to rent a sleeping bag in Cusco. In this case it is recommended to bring your own.

WE ARE SUSTAINABLE: We always clean the trail as we go. We respect the local people, teach them to keep the are clean, and help the local children. We always take one extra porter who will be walking on the trail just to pick up the bottles and plastic bags other people using the trail throw away.

WE ARE RESPONSIBLE: We try to treat our hikers, our porters and all the local people from the villages with the utmost respect. We travel in small groups to give personalized tours to each traveler, we pay good salaries to our porters and follow the porters law. We provide all our porters with gear, such as shoes, pants, jackets, t-shirts, hats, sleeping bags and most importantly, health insurance.

FITNESS: The trek is certainly not easy but you do not need to be an athlete or a trekking expert to complete it. Fitness is naturally important but this trek is the kind of trek that anyone with a positive attitude and determination can do. Obviously the more fit you are the more you will enjoy the trail and the more chance you will have to take in the scenery and appreciate the Inca ruins dotted along the way. If you do not exercise regularly, it is advisable to do some extra walking or some kind of aerobic activity in the months leading up to your trip.

Many people worry whether they will be able to cope physically but complete failure is rare and would usually only result from severe altitude sickness or a person lacking even a basic level of fitness. People of all ages (from teenagers to pensioners) complete the trek and age itself is no barrier if you are positive minded and live an active lifestyle. Before departing for your tour, we recommend visiting your doctor who will be able to provide you with more information.

STORAGE DURING THE TREK: During the trek your main luggage will be stored in Cuzco and you will receive a small duffel bag at your trail briefing (briefings are normally set for the evening before you start the trek) to pack clothes for 3-4 days. Your team of porters will carry these bags together with the food and equipment for the trail. Please note that you will not have access to these items until the end of each day as the porters will always be ahead of the group, you should therefore bring a day pack in which you can carry personal belongings such as your camera, water and sun screen etc. By Peruvian law the duffel bag carried by the porters must not weigh more than 7kg (14pounds). You can either store your luggage at your hotel or you can leave it with us.

BOOKING: Salkantay is available to depart any day of the week as long as we have two people. You still need to book in advance.

Thanks for traveling with Puma Path, a 100% local company!


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