Salkantay Trekking + Inca Trail to Machu Picchu 7D/6N

At Peru By Locals we pride ourselves in our ability to create unique and challenging itineraries for our tours, providing a trekking experience a little different from the other tour companies that operate out of Cusco.

Of all of the trails that cut their way through the majestic Andean mountains, the names of the Salkantay and Classic Inca trails are by far the most famous, and for good reason. Each of these trails climbs to breathtaking mountain passes, stops by ancient Inca settlements, winds through remote Andean communities and passes unique flora and fauna only found in this terrain. From barren snow-capped peaks to lush cloud forest, the ecosystems change as often as we change altitude, just one of the reasons this hike is so special!

Hiking for a week, we spend roughly half of this time on the Classic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, arguably one of the most famous and most popular multi-day hikes in the world. With permits now limited to roughly 200 tourists per day, the privilege to walk in the footsteps of Incan Pilgrims to their spiritual citadel at Machu Picchu often requires booking up to a year in advance. And of course the trail concludes at the jewel in the Peruvian crown, the ancient Inca citadel of Machu Picchu. Named as one of the “New Wonders of the World” in 2000.

But this trer is not all about Machu Picchu. Making several climbs to passes above 4,500m we will be consistently rewarded with spectacular 360 degree vistas of the Andes. We will visit some of the best preserved and most spectacular Inca ruins in the region where our specialised guides will provide commentary on the history of the sites. We will take exciting train journeys that carve along the lush valley floor, providing yet another perspective on the mountain scenery. And we will camp in some of the most beautiful and remote locations in the area. Far from the crowds and the lights of the nearest city, the skies in the Andes are a wonder all to themselves and the display of constellations and shooting stars is truly mesmerising. The last night of our tour will also be spent in a comfortable hotel of your choice in the town of Aguas Calientes, and we will enjoy a group dinner at the finest restaurant in town. Perfect preparation for our pre-dawn start for Machu Picchu!

This level of reward does not come without effort though. This is a challenging multi-day hike, most of which will be at high altitudes, and we recommend it only for people with a good level of basic fitness. If you want to check in with us on your level of fitness and whether this tour is suitable then please just send us an email, we will be happy to help.

Your camping adventure with Peru By Locals is designed to give maximum comfort, without detracting from the raw nature of the trekking experience. We use only the most experienced porters, horsemen & horses to carry our equipment and setup camp. Our chefs are especially trained to be able to create the most sumptuous Mountainside meals, and we use only the highest quality camping equipment to ensure you stay warm, dry and rested for each day’s hiking. We also take care of booking all transfers, transport and tickets so that you can truly relax and just enjoy the experience.

So if you are looking for a challenging, unique, spectacular adventure in the Andes, then please join us at Peru By Locals for this unforgettable 7 day trek!


Salkantay Trekking & Inca Trail Overview

. Type of tour: Trekking, camping & historical

. Distance covered: 77 km (48 miles)

  • Duration: 7 days / 6 nights
  • Lowest elevation: 2400m (7,880 feet)
  • Highest elevation: 4200m (4860m (15,945feet)
  • Level of difficulty: Demanding
  • Good for: anyone with a moderate level of fitnes



At PBL we believe it’s important that all of our clients have the opportunity to ask questions about the SalkantayClassic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu   (the itinerary, the challenges, what to bring etc) before we start. At a pre-arranged time, your guide will provide a full pre-trek briefing at your Cusco hotel the day before the start of the trek. A Peru by Locals representative will also be available at the briefing to collect any outstanding cash balance for the tour.

Day 1. Cusco – Marcoccasa – Soraypampa

Early morning transport to Marcoccasa (3550 m / 11,647 ft), head start of the trek. Along the way short stop at the town called Mollepata to get last-minute supplies and sit down for a nice cup of coffee in one of the local restaurant. At about 9:00 am we continue on to Marcoccasa, where we’ll meet our support staff including horses, who will pack everything for the trek as far as Paucarcancha.

The trail begins with gradual uphill for 3 hours and then it gets flat for the next 4 hours until the end at Soraypampa (3800 m / 12,467 ft) where we spend the night. The views are spectacular as you get closer to the campsite.

Distance covered: 12 km (7.4 miles)
Time: 7 to 9 hours
Lowest elevation: 3550m (11,647 feet)
Highest elevation: 3800m (12,467 feet)
Level of difficulty: Moderate

Day 2: Soraypampa – Humantay Lake – Ichupata

Early morning hike to the beautiful lake of Humantay – to get there it will take us about one hour up, and one hour back down to Soraypampa, from here we hike for one and half hours to Salkantaypampa (4200 m / 13870 ft), where we stop for lunch. After a delicious meal and siesta, our trek starts again towards Ichupata (4400 m /14,436 ft), where we spend the night. During the hike you will have breathtaking views of the “invincible” and majestic Salkantay and other snowcapped mountain peaks. By the time we arrive to the camp, the tents will be ready and waiting along with a delicious dinner that will round off an amazing trek day. This campsite will be the coldest of all the ones, so make sure you have warm clothes for the night.

Distance covered: 11 km (6,8 miles)
Time: 5 to 6 hours
Lowest elevation: 3800m (12,467 feet)
Highest elevation: 4400m (14,435 feet)
Level of difficulty: Demanding

Day 3: Ichupata – Inca Chiriasca – Pampacawana

After a delicious breakfast, we continue with our journey for 2 hours in steep hike up towards the Incachiriasca Pass (4860 m / 15,945 ft), highest point in whole trek. We will rest here for good amount of time and capture the incredible pictures. This pass offers you one of the most spectacular views of snowcapped mountains including Salkantay mount, Humantay, Tucarway and others. From the pass we hike down for about 2 hours to lunch spot called Sisaypampa. In the afternoon we continue down towards Pampacawana (3650 m / 11,975 ft), where we spend the night.

Distance covered: 12 km (7,4 miles)
Time: 7 to 9 hours
Lowest elevation: 3800m (12,467 feet)
Highest elevation: 4860m (15,945feet)
Level of difficulty: Demanding

Day 4: Pampacawana – Wayllabamba – Ayapata

Today we hike down through lush valley for about three hours towards the first Inca site in the trek called Paucarcancha (3150 m / 10,335 ft), where you’ll stop for history lesson given by our guide. Then we hike further down for thirty minutes to Wayllabamba, where a delicious lunch waits for you and where we’ll also join the Classic Inca trail to Machu Picchu.

Here is where we change our crew, we leave horses and join with our locals who will carry all the equipment on to the end of our trek. The last section of the trek will be 2 hours up towards the campsite through cloud forest.

Distance covered: 12 km (7,4 miles)
Time: 7 to 9 hours
Lowest elevation: 3000m (9,843 feet)
Highest elevation: 3800m (12,467 feet)
Level of difficulty: Moderate to Demanding

Day 5: Ayapata – Dead Woman’s Pass – Chaquicocha

The morning begins very early at 5 am with a nice cup of coca tea in your tent. Today is especially demanding because of the altitude and long walk. After 4 hours of trekking up we will reach the Dead Woman’s Pass or WAMIWAÑUSQA (4215 m / 13,780 ft). From here we descend to the lunch spot at Paqaymayo (3650 m / 11,975 ft).

In the afternoon we have four more hours of trekking, half of the way up and half of the way down and in between there are two Incan sites that we will have the chance to look and learn about each of them (Runcuraqay and Sayaqmarca).

Distance covered: 15 km (9.3 miles)
Time: 9 to 10 hours
Lowest elevation: 3590m (11,778 feet)
Highest elevation: 4200m (13.800 feet)
Level of difficulty: Demanding

Day 6: Chaquiccocha – Machu Picchu – Aguas Calientes

Today’s trek goes towards Phuyupatamarca Incan archaeological site, where we stop for a short period of time to explore the ruins. Afterwards we hike downhill for about three hours to WIÑAYHUAYNA, the site with the most magnificent Inca ruins along the Inca Trail and probably the most beautiful ones. After the last lunch in our trek we only have two more hours until our adventure ends at the most sacred place that Incas built, Machu Picchu. Here we catch the bus down to Aguas Calientes where we spend the night at a hotel.

Distance covered: 15 km (9,3miles)
Time: 7 to 9 hours
Lowest elevation: 2,400m (7874 feet)
Highest elevation: 3,700m (12,139 feet)
Level of difficulty: Moderate

Day 7: Machu Picchu Tour

We will take an early bus from Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu to watch the spectacular sun rise over one of the most amazing places on Earth. Be prepared for a flood of emotions and goosebumps at the very least, as you gaze at the ancient city of Machu Picchu! We will visit the lost city of Machu Picchu, a World Heritage Site and one of the New Seven Wonders of the World.

If you are brave and fit enough, you can hike up the steep Huayna Picchu mountain, or Machu Picchu mountain which is higher than Huayna Picchu. When you are ready to leave, you can take the bus back down to Aguas Calientes town to collect your luggage from the hotel and enjoy a farewell lunch with the rest of the group before you return to Cusco by train in the afternoon.

Distance covered: Walking tour of Machu Picchu
Time: 3 to 4 hours
Lowest elevation: 2,050m (6,726 feet)
Highest elevation: 2,400m (7,874 feet)
Level of difficulty: Moderate

Inclusions & exclusions

Inclusions in the Salkantay Trekking & Inca Trail:

  • Transport to and from your hotel in Cusco
  • Organic meals
  • Inca trail and Machu Picchu tickets (does not include Huayna Picchu)
  • Horses to carry all the equipment (food, tents, chairs, table, etc.) from day 1 to day 3
  • Porters to carry the equipment from day 4 to day 6
  • Emergency horse in case we need it until day 3
  • Chef
  • Boiled drinking water from day 2 onwards to the end
  • Trekking guide, knowledgeable in history, tradition, fauna and flora. Our guides are trained in Wilderness first responder in USA estandars because w belive your safety is our priority.
  • First Aid Kit, carried by your guide
  • Equipment (sleeping tent, dining tent, kitchen tent, table, chairs, air mattresses)
  • Duffle bag if needed
  • Round-trip bus tickets from Machu Picchu to Aguas Calientes
  • Train tickets from Aguas Calientes to Cusco (expedition)
  • One night hotel (2*) accommodation in Aguas Calientes (If you have preferences of hotels or a train, we can arrange it at an additional cost)
  • Eight kilos (17 pounds) free bag for the horses or porters.

Exclusions in the Salkantay Trekking & Inca Trail

  • Sleeping bag (can be rented from us)
  • Lunch on the last day at Aguas Calientes
  • Tips for muleteers, porters and guides

Additional options

Salkantay Trekking & Inca Trail to Machu Picchu

Additional Options

Huayna Picchu: In order to climb Huayna Picchu you must book in advance, since permits are limited to 400 per day. The cost is $ 20 per person. This permits needs to be book in advance


Salkantay Trekking & Inca Trail – Prices

Our service is customized to your needs, and the following prices are calculated according to the type of hotel you would like to stay in on the last day of hike (based on double room occupancy).

Students: discount of $30, but you have to supply us with a copy of your ISIC card when you make the booking. Children up to 15 years of age will be considered as students, under the condition that you supply us with a copy of the passport at the time of booking.

Flowers house 3* Casa Andina 3* Sumaq hotel 4 * Pueblo hotel 5 *
Double occupancy $ 1190

Single occupancy $ 1230

Double occupancy $1430

Single occupancy $ 1490

Double occupancy $ 1530

Single occupancy $ 1670

Double occupancy $ 1950

Single occupancy $ 2350

Note: A minimum of two people is required to run the trek

Book Now

In order for us to reserve your spot on this trek, you are required to send us the following information: full names, passport number, age, gender, nationality and make the relevant deposit of US$200 per person using PAY PAL as indicated below:

When you have sent us the information of each person, made your deposit using PAYPAL and once we have both, we will confirm your tour. Thank you so much for choosing PERU by LOCALS.

If you have any questions, send us an e-mail to:

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    What to bring

    Whatto Bring on the Salkantay Trekking:

    • Original passport (if you have acquired a new one after you made your booking, bring both)
    • Down sleeping bag (can be rented from us for $ 20)
    • Clothes (trekking boots, warm fleece jacket, few t-shirts, socks, sun hat, warm underwear, light long pants, gloves, rain jacket)
    • Toiletries (toilet paper, wet wipes because there is not showers along the way, personal towel)
    • Sunscreen SPF 35+ recommended
    • Head lamp
    • Sunglasses
    • Camera with spare batteries (batteries run down faster at high altitudes) or simple a phone may take great pictures
    • Book to read, you will have some spare time at every camp to read your favorite book or those that are about Machu Picchu that may make you journey more interesting (the following books are recommended by us:  Last Days of the Incas by Kim MacQuarrie, Turn Right at Machu Picchu: Rediscovering the Lost City One Step at a Timeby by Mark Adams)
    • Trekking poles (recommended especially for the steep descents, they can take up to 30% of weigh when using them, if you dont have any you can rented from us for $ 10 per pair per whole trek)
    • Bug repellent
    • Extra cash for tips or gratitudes (Please, cheack righ top site of the FAQs for advacces)



    Secure your Inca Trail spot for the season 2020 and join us for this amazing adventure of life time.


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