Salkantay and the Inca Trail to Machupicchu

Intro & photos
Salkantay Trek to Macchu Pichu 7d/6n

The mountains of the Vilcabamba range rise up between the Cusco region's two great rivers, the Urubamba and the Apurimac. Their desolate slopes contrast brilliantly with the lush vegetation of the lowland forests. The white peak of the sacred mountain of Salkantay (6,271 metres), wreathed in white clouds that rise from the jungle, dominates Machupicchu and its approach via the world famous Inca Trail. Treks around Salkantay's base offer an extraordinary variety of ecological regions, from tropical valleys to glacial steppes.

More information
 Trek grading   Climbing-Huayna-Picchu




Number of days:
7 days - 6 nights

Trekking, flora and fauna; archeology

Best season:
May - October
Trek grade:
Moderate - Difficult
from 9514 to 16404 feet / from 2900 to 5000 meter
Reservation code:
Urubamba Province and Machupicchu Sanctuary

My favorites

Day by day
  • Day 1: Cusco - Mollepata - Cruzpata - Sayllapata

    After an early morning pick-up from the hotel and a ride to the village of Mollepata by private bus, we will have breakfast before we begin our trek. From the subtropical valley of Mollepata with its citrus groves, we will walk to our first campsite at Sayllapata.
    (14 km - 8.7 mi / 7 hour trek approximately)
    Meals: breakfast and lunch

  • Day 2: Sayllapata - Salkantaypampa - Japanese Pampa

    Today we will walk to Salkantanpampa and catch our first views of the southern faces of the Salkantay (6,271 mts – 20,574 ft) and Humantay (6, 217 mts – 20,574 ft) massifs, both sacred to the people of the Andes. We will camp at around 4000 mts – 13,123 ft, amid impressive scenery.
    ( 10 km - 6.2 mi / 6 hour trek approximately)
    Meals: breakfast, lunch and dinner

  • Day 3: Japanese Pampa - Inca Canal

    This is a day of truly spectacular scenery as we reach a high pass just below the snow line, with Salkantay to the east and Humantay to the southeast. The Andean mountain rabbit (or vizcacha), condors, and eagles are common along this section of the trail as we descend to the valley with its Inca channels.
    (12 km - 7.5 mi / 7 hour trek approximately)
    Meals: breakfast, lunch and dinner

  • Day 4: Inca Canal - Three Stones

    We will trek today through rolling pastures, following the course taken by ancient remains of Inca water channels. Later on, we will climb toward the Three Stones.
    (12 km - 7.5 mi/ 7 hour trek)
    Meals: breakfast, lunch and dinner

  • Day 5: Three Stones - Llulluchapampa - Pakaymayu

    Today we hike to Llulluchapampa with its fascinating flora of orchids, epiphytes and cloud forest. Today we will ascend to the pass at Warmiwanuska (4,200 mts – 13,779 ft ), the highest point along the Inca trail, with excellent views of the Huayanay peaks to the east and the Vilcabamba range to the west. Afterward, we will descend into the Pakaymayu valley (3,650 mts), where we will set up  our camp for the day.
    (10 km - 6.2 mi / 7 hour trek approximately)
    Meals: breakfast, lunch and dinner

  • Day 6: Pakaymayu - Sayacmarca - Phuyupatamarca - Wiñaywayna

    This is one of the most scenic stretches of the trek, as we move into a warmer cloud forest habitat rich in endemic fauna and flora. Along the way, we will pass the archaeological sites of Sayacmarca and Phuyupatamarca before descending to the mountain forests that surround the remains of the Inca shrine of Wiñaywayna.
    ( 16 km - 10 mi/ 9 hour trek approximately)
    Meals: breakfast, lunch and dinner


  • Day 7: Wiñaywayna - Machupicchu - Cusco

    Today's trail, high above the Urubamba river, will leads us through forests replete with hummingbirds and orchids, to the Sun Gate and our first glimpse of Machupicchu below, cradled between two peaks and surrounded by dense vegetation. The royal road of the Inca will take us into the city, where we will have time to explore  the place with our guide. In the afternoon, we will take the bus to the train station of Aguas Calientes for the return train journey to Cusco, and transfer to our hotel
    (5 km - 3.1 mi/ 2 hour trek approximately)
    Meals: breakfast and lunch



  • Pick up from your hotel
  • Professional guide
  • Private transport by bus: Cusco - Mollepata (trailhead)
  • Pack horses to carry equipment and your personal gear (days 1, 2 and 3)
  • Wranglers responsible for the horses (day 1, 2 and 3)
  • Porters (to carry the tents, food, cooking equipment and personal gear up to a maximum of 7 kg, including sleeping bag and mattress (days 4, 5, 6 and 7)
  • A Cook to prepare all meals.
  • Cooking equipment, mess tent, dining tent, chairs, tables, accommodation for the porters and cook
  • Mountain Hardwear tents (a 3-person tent for every 2 individuals)
  • Therm-a-Rest self-inflating mattress
  • Meals: 7 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 6 dinners and snacks. Food is suited for trekking, and is rich in carbohydrates.
  • Boiled water provided at meal times to refill your waterbottle
  • Inca Trail permits and entrance fee for Machupicchu
  • Bus from the Machupicchu Sanctuary to Aguas Calientes
  • Return by backpacker train: Aguas Calientes - Cusco
  • Transfer from the Cusco train station to your hotel
  • First aid kit, emergency oxygen, radio communications

Not included:

  • sleeping Bag
  • Water purifying tablets
  • Tips for the porters, cook and guide
  • Lunch on last day