Salkantay 5-Day Trek To Machu Picchu - Cusco

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Tour Information

Key Details

  • Mobile Voucher Accepted
  • Hotel pickup Available
  • Duration: 5 Days
  • Language:
  • Departure Time :
    05:00 AM
  • Departure Details :
    Traveler pickup is offered
    Pick-up from accommodation in Cuzco
    *Please note that there is a mandatory pre-departure briefing at our Cuzco Headquarters one day prior to departure at 6 PM. You wil.. read more
  • Cancellation Policy :
    This activity is non-refundable Tours booked using discount coupon codes will be non refundable.


Forget the Inca Trail and hike to Machu picchu along the higher and more beautiful Salkantay Trail! Discover a different side of the great Andes mountain range and get the most amazing views of the mountains by taking this alternative route to Machu picchu.


  • Once-in-a-Lifetime Experience
  • Informative, friendly and professional guide
  • Led by a local guide
  • Small-group tour
  • Multi-Day Trip
  • Vegetarian meal option available

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Day 1: Cuzco to Mollepata to Challacancha, Trek to Soraypampa Camp (3,920m) (L/D)

Stop At: Salkantay Trail, Cusco Region
Today we pick you up between 5:00 - 6:00 am and travel by tourist-class bus to Mollepata (2,900m) where you can stretch your legs and buy snacks. Continue by car to Challacancha where we will make final preparations and double check our equipment. Embark on a 3-hour walk that will take us to Soraypampa (3,920m) where we will have lunch with panoramic views of beautiful snow-capped mountains. Hike up to Laguna de Humantay (approx. 1.5 hours each way) for more incredible views of the Andes mountains and then return to camp for the night. Our first campsite is located at 3,920m and is the highest and coldest campsite of the trip. Take some time to rest up, and enjoy your first night immersed in nature. Have dinner and go to sleep early.
Duration: 18 hours

Meals included:
Accommodation included: Our first campsite is located at 3,920m and is the highest and coldest campsite of the trip.

Day 2: Trek to Challhuay or Colcapampa Camp via High Pass (4,650m) (B/L/D)

Stop At: Salkantay Trail, Cusco Region
We will have breakfast at around 6:00 am and begin our 4-hour walk to the highest pass on this trek (4,650m) located halfway between 2 huge mountains; Salkantay (6,267m) and Humantay (5,900m). (Optional horse rental available to reach high pass for approx. 100 - 120 soles). From the pass, the views of the 2 snow-capped mountains are incredible with a possibility of snow here. After a 2-hour downhill hike, a well-deserved lunch will be served at Huayracpampa, followed by another 3-hour trek to our campsite at Challhuay or Colcapampa as we near the beginning of the high jungle region at 2,900 meters.
Inclusions: 1N Camping, Meals 1B/1L/1D. (22km, 9-10hrs)
Duration: 1 day

Meals included:
Accommodation included: Overnight at a campsite in Challhuay or Colcapampa

Day 3: Trek to La Playa & Transfer to Santa Teresa Town (1,700m) (B/L/D)

Stop At: Salkantay Trail, Cusco Region
After breakfast at 6:30 am, we start trekking for the day through the upper jungle crossing the Santa Teresa River and a variety of little brooks. Today we will pass through valleys and have wonderful views of waterfalls, tropical fruits and plants. We will have lunch at La Playa (2,200m) and continue by car to Santa Teresa town (1,700 meters), our camp for the night, with a warmer climate. After a rest, we have the option to visit the hot springs in Santa Teresa town (extra cost) and enjoy the well-deserved soothing water, a real treat after 3 hard days of trekking!
Inclusions: Car La Playa - Santa Teresa Town, 1N Camping, Meals 1B/1L/1D. (15km, 5.5hrs)
Duration: 1 day

Meals included:
Accommodation included: Camping overnight in Santa Teresa town (1,700 meters)

Day 4: Trek to Hydroelectric Station & Aguas Calientes (B/L/D)

Stop At: Salkantay Trail, Cusco Region
After having breakfast at 8:00 am, our last day on the trail will take us from Santa Teresa (1,700m) along a relaxing path for 3 hours to reach the hydroelectric station (1,880m) where a box lunch will be served. From here Aguas Calientes (2,010m) is another 3 hour slight uphill walk where we will finally have time to relax, recharge our batteries and get ready for our visit to Machu Picchu. Dinner at a local traditional restaurant.
*Optional bus transfer from Santa Teresa to the Hydroelectric Station is available for an extra cost.
*Optional train transfer from Hydroelectric Station to Aguas Calientes is available for an extra cost.
Inclusions: 1N Aguas Calientes 3* Hotel, Meals 1B/1L/1D. (18km, 6hrs)
Duration: 1 day

Meals included:
Accommodation included: Overnight in Aguas Calientes 3* Hotel

Day 5: Explore Machu Picchu & Return to Cuzco (B)

Stop At: Machu Picchu
We will catch one of the first buses (05:30 am) to Machu Picchu (25-minute ride) in order to appreciate the magnificent city in the early morning light as the mist dissipates. A walking tour (approximately 2 hours) is given by your guide and after this you can explore the mysterious city on your own. If you still have energy you can also climb the optional Huayna Picchu Peak inside the archaeological site (to be booked in advance at an extra cost). Take a bus back down to Aguas Calientes. Return by train to Ollantaytambo and take a bus to Cuzco. You will be dropped off late in the day at the Plaza San Francisco. Upon arrival you will need to make your own way to your accommodation.
DESCRIPTION OF MACHU PICCHU GUIDED SITE VISIT: The one and only, the most spectacular (and not to mention most popular) archaeological site in all of South America. Your guide will take you on a 2-hour tour of Machu Picchu walking you through the most important sites and covering the history of the place (if you haven't already heard it all during the Salkantay Trek). Then you will have free time to explore on your own and take pictures at your leisure.
Take an OPTIONAL hike up the steep peak named Huayna Picchu, which is located inside the Machu Picchu archaeological site. This sometimes muddy peak takes about 45 - 60 minutes to hike up and awards you with unforgettable views of Machu Picchu from a coveted perspective. Keep in mind that if you want to take this optional hike, you must now purchase your ticket at least 2 weeks in advance for an additional cost in order to get one of the 400 passes (200 people are allowed up at 7:00am and 200 more at 10:00am). Please send us an email directly to request this extra ticket.
Inclusions: Round trip Bus Aguas Calientes - Machu Picchu, Train Aguas Calientes - Ollantaytambo, Bus Ollantaytambo - Cuzco, 2-Hour Machu Picchu Guided Visit, Meal 1B.
Duration: 5 hours

Meals included:
No accommodation included on this day.


4x Breakfast

4x Dinner

4x Lunch

Accommodation included: 4 nights

Pre-departure briefing

Cuzco Accommodation Pick-Up

Van Cuzco to Mollepata to Challacancha (starting point of trek)

Car Transfer La Playa to Santa Teresa

Round Trip Tourist Bus Aguas Calientes - Machu Picchu

Tourist Train Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo

Bus Ollantaytambo to Cuzco

Professional Bilingual Guide on trek & Machu Picchu tour

Camping Accommodation during trek (including Basic Sleeping Pad & tent for 2 people)

1-night 3* Hotel Accommodation at Aguas Calientes

Meals: 4B/4L/4D/3 snacks with typical menus

Horseman and mules to carry cooking and camping equipment plus a total of 7 kilos for each trekker. (This includes 3 kilos for your sleeping bag & mattress plus 4 kilos of personal items.

Emergency oxygen bottle

Small group experience; Max 16, Avg 4

Entry/Admission - Salkantay Trail

Entry/Admission - Machu Picchu


Airport Pick-Up / Drop Off

Sleeping bag

Day 1 Breakfast, Day 5 Lunch, Bottled Water

Guide for bus and train transfers (these portions are on your own)

Optional Hot Springs Santa Teresa (20 soles)

Optional Bus transfer from Santa Teresa to the Hydroelectric Station (10 soles)

Optional Train transfer from Hydroelectric Station to Aguas Calientes (28 USD)

Optional Huayna Picchu Trek (at an extra cost) must be booked at least 2 weeks in advance

Optional Machu Picchu Mountain Hike (at an extra cost) must be booked at least 1 week in advance

Accommodation in Cusco

Tips (Please remember that tipping is 100% optional and depends entirely on the service you received. It is customary to give tips in Latin America, however it is NOT mandatory. If you wish to give a tip, these are our recommendations.) Guide: 40-60 soles per trekker Assistant Guide: 30-40 soles per trekker Horsemen: 60-80 soles for each horseman from the whole group Cook: 150-200 soles for the cook from the whole group

Note: In 2017, the Peruvian government may require a permit for Salkantay. If this is approved, the rates will be around: 133 Soles ($USD 41) Adult and 67 Soles ($USD 21) Student

Note: Prices for optional activities are subject to change at any time without prior notice.

Additional Info

Confirmation will be received at time of booking, unless booked within 4 days of travel. In this case confirmation will be received within 48 hours, subject to availability

Not recommended for travelers with back problems

Minimum age is 7 years

PRE-DEPARTURE BRIEFING: There is a mandatory pre-departure briefing at our Cuzco Headquarters one day prior to departure at 5pm, 6pm or 7pm depending on your trek. You will receive detailed information on your excursion, a list of what to bring and confirm your departure details.

PRE-DEPARTURE CHECK-IN: Please make sure to check-in with your passport before your pre-departure briefing. We encourage our travellers to check-in at our offices a couple of hours before or any day prior to the briefing , that way we can give everybody personal attention and information regarding booking extras, rental equipment or questions in general. Time schedule for meetings will be: - Inca Trail and Lares 6pm - Salkantay, Inca Quarry, Machu Picchu Jungle, Ausangate, Choquequirao 7pm - Inca Trail Express, Rainbow Mountain, Machu Picchu by Train, Sacred Valley to Machu Picchu, Machu Picchu Full Day 5pm Bamba Experience is located at: Calle Matara 242, Second Floor. Cuzco, Peru Hours of Operation: 10:00-14:00 and 16:00-20:00 hrs Daily Tel: +51 84 205234 Emergency Tels: Darwin +51 9984 44933 - +51 9842 85801, Anderson +51 9231 25342

Accommodation Options: Single travelers will share a tent/room with another traveler & couples will have a tent/room to themselves. Day 4: Single travelers will share a room with another traveler & couples will have a private room.

Physical Requirements: This hike is demanding, it is important to be in good physical condition. There are important temperature changes associated with altitude changes (from 4000 meters to 2000 meters).

Departure dates for trek: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday & Saturday (Daily departures with a group of 4 or more). No Departures in January and February due to unfavorable climatic conditions.

Important: You must provide the following information upon booking: Full name (exactly as it appears on the passport), Date of Birth, Nationality, Passport Number, Date of Passport Expiry - Must be valid for at least 6 months past the date of travel. Without this information, the local tour operator will be unable to make the booking. Please be aware that your complete and correct passport information must be provided. Absolutely no modifications can be made once your booking has been confirmed. Any changes or discrepancies in the information provided will result in a complete loss of permits and entrance tickets, for which you will be held responsible and will need to pay for again.

Not wheelchair accessible

Near public transportation

Typical Meals on the Trek On all of our Inca Trail Treks and Alternative Treks to Machu Picchu we search for the best cooks who put forth their best effort to provide you with the best tasting meals on the mountain. All of our cooks pride themselves on their delicious specialty menus with the freshest local ingredients available. Every meal is prepared fresh with plenty of variety and an abundant quantity of food including a vegetarian option for every meal (please advise prior to departure). Here is an idea of what you will be eating during your trek. Vegetarian Option Available Upon Request (please advise at least 2 days in advance). BREAKFASTS: Hot porridge, quinoa or oats, fried eggs, egg omelet or pancakes with fresh bread, fried bananas and boiled water for hot tea, coca, coffee, chocolate and milk. LUNCH & DINNER: First Course: Quinoa, corn, noodle, asparagus, mushroom or vegetable soup, stuffed avocado or potatoes Second Course: Chicken breast, beef stew, quinoa, fried rice, hamburgers, fried chicken, spaghetti bolognese, typical dishes: aji de gallina (chilli pepper chicken), escabeche de pollo (marinated chicken) or ajiaco de olluco (spicy potato stew). Deserts: Fried plantains, chocolate pudding, chocolate or vanilla cake and boiled water for hot tea, coca, coffee, chocolate and milk. SNACKS: Boiled water for hot tea, coca, coffee, chocolate and milk with popcorn, cookies, crackers.

SUGGESTED PACKING LIST: Bring or Rent in Cuzco: hiking poles, rain pants, rain poncho, trekking boots, sandals, warm socks, sweater, thermals, hat, gloves, sun hat, sun block, sun glasses, flashlight/torch, camera, extra batteries and memory card (there is limited to no electricity available during the trek), waterproof bags for your camera, hand sanitizer, personal first aid kit, water bottle. Bring extra cash for snacks, water, gatorade which doubles or triples in price along the trail. Bathing suit for hot springs in Santa Teresa Town (this activity is available at an additional price).

DON'T FORGET THE ESSENTIALS: Original passport, visa (if applicable), insurance card, personal medications.

Travellers who booked their trip using one passport, then renewed or replaced it afterward, must carry the old passport they used to make the booking or a photocopy with them on the trip.

You will have a guide during the trek and on the Machu Picchu tour. However, during your bus and train transfers you will not be accompanied by a guide.

If desired, an extra night in Aguas Calientes town can be arranged. (Please let us know whether you would like to stay an extra night when booking your tour.)

As of June 11, 2022, all travelers over 18 years old must have three doses of the COVID-19 vaccine. That means two regular doses plus a booster. Passengers from 12 to 17 years old must prove they are vaccinated with two doses. If they do not have a complete scheme, they must present the negative result of an RT-PCR test taken no more than 48 hours before boarding in their country of origin.

Travelers should have a moderate physical fitness level

This tour/activity will have a maximum of 16 travelers

Traveler Reviews

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  • 17-Nov-2019

    Die Wanderung war ein tolles Erlebnis, obwohl teilweise etwas anstrengend für ungeübte Wanderer und die Nächte sind kurz durch das frühe aufstehen, aber es ist durchaus machbar. Anderson hat uns durch die verschiedenen Gebiete geführt, von den kalten Bergen in den warmen Jungel und sich gut um unser Wohlergehen gesorgt. Es war sehr interessant seinem Wissen über die Umgebung und die Pflanzen zuzuhören. Er war immer offen für Fragen und hatte ein offenes Ohr für unsere Anliegen. Anderson spricht sehr gut englisch, ist freundlich, hilfsbereit und man hat Spass bei der Wanderung. Thank you for everything Anderson, it was nice to hike with you. Für das leibliche wohl war Carlos zuständig, er hat uns während der Tour mit Nahrung versorgt. Seine speisen waren nicht nur für den Magen, sondern auch für das Auge ein Highlight. Egal ob Frühstück oder Abendessen, er hat sogar für mich als Vegetarierin immer etwas leckeres auf den Tisch gezaubert. Die englische Sprache lernt er noch, aber er ist offen für eine Unterhaltung und willig die Sprache zu lernen. Er ist sehr hilfsbereit und freundlich. Ich kann nur sagen: La comida fue fantástica, muchas gracias Carlos. Der Grund für den Punkteabzug ist das von Bamba gebuchte Hostel für die Nacht vor der Reise, das Milhouse Hostel Cusco ist ein Party Hostel und man hat die ganze Nacht Lärm und sollte am Morgen um 05:30 Uhr parat sein und abgeholt werden. Das Briefing am Vorabend bei Bamba Experience findet um 19:00 Uhr statt und danach muss man vielleicht noch einkaufen, Geld abheben und packen, was auch einiges an Zeit beansprucht, daher ist mir diese Zeit etwas zu spät. Die gebuchte und bezahlte Luftmatratze war nicht im Camp, es wurde zwar angeboten im Camp Shop nach Ersatz zu fragen, aber schlussendlich reichte die vorhandene dünne Luftmatratze aus. Die letzte Nacht vor dem Machu Picchu Besuch im Hotel war eine willkommene Abwechslung zum Camp, doch das Abendessen um 19:00 Uhr war mir zu spät, wir mussten am nächsten Morgen um 04:45 Uhr beim Bus in der Wartelinie sein. Wir waren um 16:00 Uhr in Aguas Calientes und hätten früher essen können, da unser Gepäck erst um 18:00 Uhr ankam.

  • 13-Nov-2019

    Great experience to do the 5 day trekking! Salkantay trek has amazing views and continuously changing surroundings! The guide Anderson knows so much about the wildlife, history and culture that it was a big addition to our experience. So big shout out to him for the awesome time he gave us! Also Carlos was amazing with his delicious cooking skills, which resulted in a 3 meal course for lunch and dinner with local products! Overall very good trip, which is more that worth your time and everything well arranged!

  • 02-Oct-2019

    We had a fantastic trip in a small group consisting of 3 participants, our guide Anderson and our chef Jorge. It was a tiring but equally impressive trip. The whole tour was very well planned and everything worked smoothly. Our guide Anderson told us a lot about the flora and fauna along the way, the history of the inca and the life in peru today. He always paid attention to all team members. The food in the trip was always delicious. We saw so many beautiful landscapes on this Trek. And at the last day we were one of the first in the morning (6 p.m.) arriving at Machu Picchu, without many tourists and a beautiful sunrise - an unforgettable experience. Thanks to our tour-operator Bamba and especially to our Guide Anderson and our chef Jorge.

  • 02-Oct-2019

    We did the 5-day trek to Machu Picchu. It was a wonderful and unforgetable experience in a small group of 3 persons + guide, cook and horseman. Our guide Anderson showed us so much of flora and fauna, explained us the life of the inca, peruanian history, culture and lifestyle until today and was always caring for our group-members. Also our cook jorge made us happy after long terms of walking with great tasting local and healthy food. We had a great time together, eventhough it was sometimes exhausting to walk that far in this altitude. Never will forget this trip, always would do it again. Thanks to Anderson and the other group-members.

  • 01-Oct-2019

    It was our first time in Peru and we loved it. The people and landscape are very colorful and lovely. The 5day Salkantay trek to Machu Picchu was one of the best experience we had. It was powerful, emotional, amazing and enjoyable. Bamba experience Cusco was very well organized, especially our Guide Junior made this Trek unforgettable. He told us many things about the country, nature, culture and the spirit of „pachamama“. Junior was very kind and not pushing us by walking in this high altitude. The food on the trek was great. We loved it and we highly recommend him and bamba experience cusco for everyone who will learn something about the Andes and the culture. We will take the spirit with us! Thanks a lot to junior and bamba for this adventure! Vicky & Christian

  • 27-Sep-2019

    Excellent service with a small group and guide was full of knowledge about the local area, food was also fantastic

  • 25-Sep-2019

    Our experience with Bamba and the 5 day Salkantay trek was nothing short of amazing. The entire experience from start to finish was worry free and so professional. I have to say a huge part of the reason it was so amazing was that our guide ANDERSON was the best. Anderson was so kind, caring, full of interesting knowledge and just an all around wonderful human being. My husband and I really enjoyed getting to know him and appreciated the patience and genuine demeanour that he demonstrated. Our chef Adriel was also incredible. Cooking 5 course meals off a small gas stove and waking us up at 5am with coca tea. Adriel was always smiling and I have to say his food was some of the best that we have ever had. Thank you Anderson, Adriel, and the whole Bamba crew for making our experience one we will never EVER forget! Lots of love, the Chadwicks

  • 24-Sep-2019

    Highly recommended. The trip is nicely balanced between hiking, down time and other excursions. I loved the mountain scenery on days one and two and then the dramatic change into the jungle thereafter. The campsites were well maintained and sociable and the three star accommodation the night before Machu Pichu was much appreciated. I can't speak highly enough of our guide, Willy - aka Peru's answer to William Wallace. Willy set the right tone for the tour from the get go. He catered for the varying needs of the group very well and, importantly, always ensure we lived the moment. He's no doubt done hundreds of these tours, but still managed to make ours feel special. His knowledge was great without being overbearing and I appreciated his personal touches re the Inca culture. Running with the packhorses, copious amounts of Inca tequila, bathing in the (freezing) waterfall and climbing the passion fruit trees were just some of the highlights Willy introduced me to. For what it's worth, I was a tour guide in Scotland, and I learnt alot from Willy's methods. Last but not least, our chef Bennilito was hilarious and his meals were well hearty. He and Willy had a great dynamic. In summary, don't be put off that this trek is not the classic Inca trial. It's truly a great alternative. Perhaps it's even better?

  • 08-Sep-2019

    Mein Freund und ich waren das erste mal in Südamerika und haben uns für diesen Trek entschieden, da die Beschreibung sehr viel versprechend klang. Und wir waren begeistert! Bamba ist wie eine kleine Familie und man fühlt sich sofort wohl. Das Abenteuer beginnt mit einem Briefing, bei dem man die Tour durchgeht und noch einige Tipps bekommt. Wanderstöcke, Matratze und Schlafsack kann man auch ausleihen. Wir hatten einen tollen Guid namens Anderson der unsere überschaubare Gruppe von 3 Leuten geführt hat. Er war sehr geduldig, da wir Hobby Trecker mit der Höhe etwas zu kämpfen hatten. Aber generell geht es tatsächlich mit der Höhe. Coca tee, den man sogar morgens vom Koch direkt ans Zelt bekommt, hilft bei der Akklimatisierung. Die erste Nacht ist relativ kalt daher sind Wärme Schlafssachen zu empfehlen. Der zweite Tag ist unglaublich beeindruckend und von den Kilometern und Höhenmetern sollte man du h nicht einschüchtern lassen. Nach Tag zwei geht es stetig bergab und die Flora und Fauna ändert sich stark. Generell lässt sich sagen das der Trek super vielfältig ist. Unser guid hat uns viel über Pflanzen und Bräuche erzählt, die die Tour weiter aufgewertet hat. Ich kann diese Tour, Bamba und unseren guid Anderson nur empfehlen! Ps: Schokolade (viel Schokolade!) mitnehmen

  • 08-Sep-2019

    Das war mit Abstand das wundervollste Abenteuer, das ich bisher erleben durfte. Die ersten beiden Tagen haben es schon in sich, da man jeweils über 4000m hoch kommt. Man wird aber mit einer Aussicht belohnt, die man nicht beschreiben kann. Wenn man sich beherrscht und seinen Rhythmus findet, ist der Aufstieg echt okay. Meine Partnerin und ich sind regelmäßig in den Alpen zum Boarden, aber keine Wanderer. Dennoch haben wir es geschafft. Zur Not gibt es auch noch Pferde. Zu unserem Guide: Anderson ist noch jung. Aber daraus ist die Qualität nicht abzuleiten. Er hat uns gut durch den Trek geführt. Er war zuvorkommend, ist ein sehr lieber und netter Mensch, hat uns immer bezüglich unser Vitalität im Auge gehabt, wusste viel über Flora und Fauna und hatte stets ein Lächeln im Gesicht. Und so sind auch alle bei Bamba. Immer hilfsbereit und auch kulant.

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