At 20574' (6271m), Nevado de Salkantay is the tallest and most majestic mountain in the Cordillera Vilcabamba range and the backdrop for a new variation on the trek to Machu Picchu. This journey travels off the beaten track, away from the crowds found on the Inca Trail. It offers a true view of the Peruvian mountains with spectacular vistas and provides the feeling of adventure and remoteness the Inca Trail has lost. The trek starts in Cusco as per the standard trip itinerary and ends with a full day at Machu Picchu. It's a great way to see the best of both worlds.
Leader: Wilfredo Lopez
Price: $2,500 All inclusive (Lima to Lima)
PLEASE, LOOK AT THE INCLUSIONS-THIS TRIP IS LOADED WITH SIDE TRIPS AND EXTRAS!
Day 1 Oct 01 2024 Arrival in Lima/Overnight/Evening Group Meeting
Day 2 Oct 02 2024Shuttle to LIM Airport/Flight to Cusco/City Walking Tour and Overnight (11,200feet) After quick lunch we will walk trough Cusco City and its markets.
Day 3 Oct 03 2024 Acclimatization and Sacred Valley Tour. We will spend the day on visits to animal sanctuary-see condors up close and personal, tourInca ruins in Ollantaytambo and Pisac, and enjoy Peruvian lunch buffet. Time permiting, on the way back to Cusco, we will stop at Chicheria and learn how chichia is made or visit Maras Salt Mine
Day 4 Oct 04 2024 CUSCO – SALKANTAYPAMPA
We will pickup the group very early from thehotel and travel trough Peruvian landscape to the village of Mollepata (8,900ft); once there, we will stop for breakfast and then continue for another 30min to the start of our trek.A 2-3hrs hike will take us to our campatSAYLLAPATA (11,500ft). On the way, we will see quiet Andean villages and also visit KILLARUMIYOC, a site where the Incas constructed their calendar. After our visit, we will have breakfast and then continue to the Limatambo valley. We will briefly stop in the MOLLEPATA village to see the streets and relax for a few minutes before continuing to the trailhead. We will have lunch and from this site, we will hike until we arrive at our campsite called SALKANTAYPAMPA at 13,100 feet
Day 5 Oct 05 2024 SALKANTAYPAMPA - COLLPAPAMPA
We will cross the left bank of a stream in the morning before hiking steeply uphill. We will come to a series of zigzags with breathtaking views of SALKANTAY and UMANTAY and then continue to the top of the seventh switchback where the terrain levels out under SALKANTAY and then drops gently down to a small lake called SOYROCOCHA. Stopping at this site, we can enjoy the nature before walking uphill for approximately one hour and a half. We will then reach the highest pass at 15,100 feet (4,600 meters). Here, we will have a stunning view of the sacred mountains of UMANTAY and SALKANTAY. We will also be able to see a pile of stones that grows daily as each traveler adds one as he or she passes. When a tourist adds to this pile, he or she thanks the APUS (mountain spirits) for a safe trip. We will then descend to a site called HUAYRACMACH’AY at 12,500 feet (3,800 meters) before continuing to HUMANTAY, a pyramid-shaped peak. We will then arrive to HUAYRACPAMPA where we will have lunch. After re-energizing, we will enter the tropical cloud forest and discover its lush vegetation of wild orchids, bromelias and other flowers, as well as hummingbirds. We will then continue our descent through the bamboo groves and after 4 hours heading downhill, we will arrive to the village of COLLPAPAMPA at 9,500 feet (2,900 meters) where we will have dinner and camp for the night.
DAY 6 Oct 06 2024 COLLPAPAMPA - LA PLAYA
After a healthy breakfast, we will continue down the valley into the forest that contains groves of bamboo and great bird watching opportunities. Flocks of colorful tropical birds roam the forest and waterfalls cascade down cliffs with water warm enough for you to bathe in. The stretch also has begonias, purple orchids and strawberries lying on the path. We will then walk to our campsite, LA PLAYA. From there, we will set up camp, have lunch and have the afternoon to explore the surrounding area. There is a school where many tourists like to play soccer with local children.
DAY 7 Oct 07 2024 LA PLAYA- HIDROELECTRICA – AGUAS CALIENTES
In the early morning, we will begin our difficult climb to the LLACTAPATA pass at 8,900 feet (2,700 meters). From there, you will be able to see the magnificentIncan city, Machu Picchu. From LLACTAPATA, we will descend through thick vegetation, tall trees, and incredible bird diversity. After we reach the hydroelectric site, we will take a local train to AguasCalientes where we will spend the night.
Day 8 Oct 08 2024 AGUAS CALIENTES - MACHUPICCHU - CUSCO
After an early-morning breakfast, we will take the bus to MACHUPICCHU where you will have a thorough tour with your guide. You will then have the opportunity to climb HUAYNAPICCHU before heading down to AGUAS CALIENTES to board the train back to Cusco.
Day 9 Oct 09 2024 Free Day to Explore Cusco and rest
Day 10 Oct 10 2024 Full Day Trip to Rainbow Mountain. The Rainbow Mountain or Vinicunca Mountain in Peru is in a majestic location and nature’s gift. Rainbow Mountains represents one of the most spectacular places of the Cordillera Vilcanota as it keeps a natural colour given by the presence of sedimentary eroding rocks.
Day 11 Oct 11 2024 Flight Back to Lima and Back Home
The group will depart Cusco in the morning of Oct 11th. Most flights back to the United States leave late at night or in the evening, so you can book your return flight to the US on the same day we'll depart Cusco.
Initially, we’ll spend a two nights in Cusco (11,200feet) and do easy city tours to further our acclimatization. Once on the trek to Machu Picchu each day after breakfast, we’ll pack our camp and hike 5-7 hrs. daily. Photo opportunities daily!
Crew Treks strongly recommends that you enroll with Global Rescue prior to embarking on this trip. Please click on the link below for details and quotes.
The prices are reasonable and the signup process is simple.
We strongly encourage everyone to purchase travel insurance, which covers trip cancellation, interruption, delay, baggage loss or delay, medical expenses, etc.
Travel insurance offers the best possible protection if you have a sudden, unexpected illness or injury prior to or when traveling.
Here are some useful links:
Flight and Visa Info:
There is no visa requirement for US or EC Citizens. Plenty of flights from the United States and fairly easy to non-rev/stand by (for airline employees) Additionally, there are plenty of flights between Lima and Cusco, butduring summer months they are expensive and hard to non-rev. Therefore Crew Treks itinerary is from Lima-relax on the bus and enjoy the scenery!