9 Days – Majestic snow caps – Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu

Sacred Valley, Salkantay Trek & Machu Picchu

After having explored the highlights of Cusco and the Sacred Valley get ready for your trekking adventure. The Salkantay Trek offers stunning views on snowcapped Salkantay Peak and passing various ecological levels as you make your way down to Aguas Calientes. Conclude your trip with the visit of Machu Picchu, a once in a lifetime experience.

The whole trip including the Salkantay Trek is completely private (i.e. private guide, horsemen, horses & team and all equipment included).

Customize this trip according to your preferences and travel style.

Day 1: Arrival to Lima – Welcome to Peru!

Just cross the street when leaving the exit hall of the Airport. Your hotel is located only a few meters away on the Airport’s premises. Relax and get some rest for the next day.

There are no domestic night flights in Peru. If your international flight arrives in the evening, you’ll need to spend the first night in Lima. The Wyndham Costa del Sol Airport Hotel is located inside the premises of the airport, only a few meters away from the arrival hall. If you’re arriving to Lima in the morning, you can directly continue to Cusco, allowing for an additional day.
You may arrive any time to Lima. The itinerary will be adapted to your actual arrival time.

Day 2: Flight to Cusco & Sacsayhuaman Ruins

Enter the Airport for your flight to Cusco (approx. 1:30 hour). Visit Sacsayhuaman, the majestic Inca Fortress overlooking Cusco. After a first introduction to the Inca’s history and a guided visit, you will have time to explore the vast site on your own.

After lunch, visit Cusco’s Main Square, get familiar with the streets of Cusco and admire its beautiful architecture.

Day 3: Hiking Pisac Ruins

Drive by private car to the village of Pisac (approx. 45 minutes’ total driving duration), experiencing the fantastic Andean landscape as you gradually descend to the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Stop by a view point and enjoy the stunning view over snowcapped mountains.            
Drive up the mountain for a great view over the Valley and today’s highlight, a guided visit of Pisac Ruins on the Mountain’s top. Leave the crowds at the top and hike down to the village with more ruins on the way (approx. 3 hours’ hiking).
Enjoy your lunch at a local restaurant. Afterwards you’ll have time to explore Pisac’s famous handicraft market before driving back to Cusco.

Day 4: Mountain biking to Moray & stunning Inca Salt Flats

Mountain bike (optional) to the archeological site of Moray with its perfectly round Inca terraces, also known as the “Inca Lab”. Continue to the Inca Salt Flats and marvel at over 4,000 salt ponds built by the pre-Inca over 800 years ago, where the locals still harvest salt in exactly the same way as their ancestors did.
After lunch, drive to your nearby located hotel in the Valley and replenish your energy for the Inca Trail the next day.

The bike ride is optional, although ideal for travelers enjoying the outdoors. No former experience is required and the trail will be adapted to your preferences (easy to challenging). The car will follow the bikes the whole time, so you don’t need to carry anything.
If preferred, you can also choose to skip the bike ride and add in a hike instead or rather take it relaxed.

Day 5: Salkantay Trek Day 1 – From Cusco to Soraypampa & amazing Humantay Lagoon

Get picked up at your hotel in Cusco (5:00 AM) and drive to the starting point of your trekking adventure at Marqokasa (3,700 m.a.s.l.).

Meet your trekking team and start your trek hiking for approx. 45 minutes uphill to reah “Canal Inca” for the first views on Vilcabamba Mountain Range and Huamantay Glacier. Continue for approx. 2 hours (mostly flat) to the campsite at Soraypampa (3,900 m.a.s.l.). Enjoy your lunch prepared by your chef and get some rest.
In the afternoon, visit amazing Humantay Lagoon (4,250 m.a.s.l.) surrounded by snowcapped mountains (approx. 1.5-hour hike uphill). Back at the campsite, enjoy your dinner prepared by your chef and get some rest for the next day.

Total hiking distance: 10 km
Duration: 5 – 6 hours

Day 6: Salkantay Trek Day 2 – Soraypampa – Salkantay Pass – Chaullay

After an early breakfast, start your second trekking day (6:00 AM) with the challenging ascend during approx. 5 hours to Salkantay Pass (4,650 m.a.s.l.) from where you’ll have a breathtaking view on the four majestic snow capped peaks of Salkantay, Humantay, Tucarhuay and Pumasillo.

Descend to today’s lunch spot at Huayracmachay (3,950 m.a.s.l.) and replenish your energy.

In the afternoon, descend during approx. 3 hours to the campsite at Chaullay (2,950 m.a.s.l.) at the beginning of the high jungle with lush vegetation and warmer temperatures.

After dinner, relax under starry sky and rest for the next day

Total hiking distance: 19 km
Duration: 8 – 9 hours

Day 7: Salkantay Trek Day 3: Chaullay – Playa Sahuayaco – Aguas Calientes

Today you’ll make your way from Chaullay (2,950 m.a.s.l.) all the way down to Aguas Calientes (2,000 m.a.s.l.). Admire the gradually changing vegetation, with fruit trees and orchids, coffee plantations, passing small waterfalls until reaching the lunch spot in the small town of Sahuayaco (2,200 m.a.s.l / approx. 5.5 hours hike). You made it!
After lunch, drive by private van for 1 hour to the check point of Hidroelectrica and take the train to Aguas Calientes. Enjoy a well-deserved shower at your hotel and a relaxed evening.

Total hiking distance: 14 km
Duration: 5 – 6 hours     

Day 8: The Sanctuary: Machu Picchu & Huayna Picchu (or Machu Picchu Mountain)

In early morning, meet your guide and drive up to the vast archaeological site of Machu Picchu for a guided visit. Climb challenging Huayna Picchu (or Machu Picchu Mountain) for a breathtaking view over the whole site.

Hop on the bus back to Aguas Calientes for lunch in a local restaurant. Then take the train to Ollantaytambo where your driver is waiting to get back to Cusco.

Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain?

For those who wish to add in an additional hike to the cultural visit of Machu Picchu should consider climbing one of the two additional mountains located on the site of Machu Picchu.
Tickets are limited per day and need to be purchased well in advance. The challenging hike uphill takes about 1 hour, rewarded with breathtaking views from the top. However, in case of Huayna Picchu, it’s important that you are not afraid of heights (narrow steps next to an abyss). In case heights are an issue, Machu Picchu Mountain would be the better choice.

Day 9: Flight to Lima & Farewell

Enjoy some free time in Cusco to further explore. Then get picked up at your hotel and drive to Cusco Airport for your flight to Lima & Outbound flight.

Safe journey home & come back soon!

There are domestic flights from Cusco to Lima all day. However, your international flight should not leave before 10 AM to make it in time to Lima. Your domestic flight will be booked in accordance with departure time of your international return flight.

hot!

9 Day Peru Adventure

Cusco, Sacred Valley, Salkantay Trek & Machu Picchu
as of USD 3,920per person
3 Star accommodation for 2 travelers, based on double room occupancy (outside public holidays)

as of 4,130 USD per person
4 Star accommodation for 2 travelers, based on double room occupancy (outside public holidays)

as of 4,760 USD per person
5 Star accommodation for 2 travelers, based on double room occupancy (outside public holidays)

Includes:

  • 2x domestic flights: Lima – Cusco (roundtrip)
  • All accommodation: 6x nights in the Hotel category of your choice, 2x nights at the campsite (Salkantay Trek)
  • Meals: 8x breakfast, 2x lunch, 2x dinner
  • All Transportation: all transportation by private car, including airport transfers
  • All entry fees: all entry fees to sites visit during the trip, including Machu Picchu & Huayna Picchu (or Machu Picchu Mountain), train tickets and bus tickets up to the site of Machu Picchu
  • All equipment: Tents, dining and private toilet tent, mattresses & sleeping bags
  • Private Trekking Team: Cook, assistant, porters & private English-speaking specialized guide
  • Private English-speaking guiding service on excursions
  • All tours and excursions

Excludes:

  • Your international flight
  • Trip insurance
  • Tips for the guides and staff

Activities

  • Visits of the main archeological sites of Cusco & the Sacred Valley
  • Hiking Pisac Ruins (2.5 – 3 hours)
  • Mountain biking (optional – no former experience required)
  • Salkantay Trek (3 days / 2x nights camping) – can be extended to 3x nights
  • Train to Aguas Calientes
  • Guided visit of Machu Picchu + climbing Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain

Difficulty

Challenging – you need to be in good health and physically very fit.

Time sensitivity

Not time sensitive, except for tickets to Huayna Picchu (or Machu Picchu Mountain) which need to be arranged for well in advance, ideally 3 months prior to travel in high season.