Salkantay Lodge

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Highlights:

Peru, Sacred Valley, Lares Valley, exploring Pisaq market, visiting traditional villages, Inca ruins, hiking in the Sacred Valley, Ollantaytambo fortress, experiencing Machu Picchu

From:

US$ 2400

Have you always dreamed of hiking an Inca trail to Machu Picchu …but don’t want to sacrifice on the quality of your lodging? The good news is that this possibility exists, and the accommodations are truly first class! The Salkantay Lodge & Adventure Resort — along with its three other affiliated Mountain Lodges of Peru — offers a number of itineraries that allow adventurers the enriching experience of traveling an ancestral route, in addition to spending each night in one of these lodges’ comfortable beds after delighting in a hot bath and a delicious meal. These Inca Trail Mountain Lodges invite you to go on any of several multi-day excursions along Inca trails (The Salkantay Trek, the Inca Llactapata Trail and others), which allow travelers to experience at least 15 different ecosystems, as well as have up-close encounters with the exotic wildlife and fauna, and cross mountain passages at an altitude of up to three miles high. These tours are led by Salkantay guides, whose competence and personable characters have earned them recognition as being among the best in Peru. They are guides who know the routes and the local culture in depth, as well as being multilingual and proficient in managing groups. These guides will lead you — on foot or on horseback — to Peru’s most iconic destination: Machu Picchu – the best reward for your effort. While these tours are physical journeys involving nature activities such as trekking, mountain biking, horseback riding and climbing, at the same time these are spiritual and intellectual experiences, as you will visit timeless archaeological sites, contemplate awe-inspiring scenery and climb up to traditional communities to learn about ancient Inca customs.

Itinerary Details

Room / Cabin / Category
Price
Double
USD$ 2400

Included in the price:

  • All meals (except breakfast on the first day and dinner on the last day)
  • Transfers
  • Guided tours throughout the trip
  • Entrance fees and permits to all tourist and archaeological sites
  • Tips for staff members (except for guides) US $ 5-10 per day is suggested

Not Included in the price:

  • Single accommodations
  • Guide services in languages ​​other than Spanish and English (available upon request)
  • Medical and travel insurance (highly recommended)
AM: Throughout this region, city squares and markets are generally the main centers of activity, and none is more alive than the famous Pisaq market. A morning visit to this market will allow you to discover the unique variety of area products and to sample the rich culture of the Peruvian Andes. Travelers looking for inspiration from nature can also go on an invigorating morning walk while surrounded by incredible views of the Andean mountains that have historically protected this magnificent valley.
PM: Later, you will be able to enjoy exclusive access to the isolated village of Viacha, where you will learn about the artisan potato farming there and enjoy a traditional “Pachamanca” meal cooked beneath red-hot stones.
AM: This morning, you will have a chance to delve deeper into the heart of Lares Valley by going on a beautiful journey in the mountains along the famous Camino del Tejedor de los Incas (“Path of the Inca Weavers”). This route will also allow you to visit the unique and uninhabited Ancasmarca archaeological site in the town of Lares.
PM: After lunch, you can choose between visiting the traditional weavers' village of Choquecancha or taking an excursion to see turquoise-blue lakes and the high peaks of the remote village of Huacahuasi. There, your group will spend the night at the Huacahuasi Lodge, which is managed jointly by the local community and has as one of its objectives the protection of local cultural heritage and the environment.
AM: This morning, the Huacahuasi community will be spotlighted, as you will have a chance to learn about the people’s heritage and their day-to-day activities. You can also choose from several exploring options. You can go on a spectacular hike along a high mountain pass leading to the ancient city of Ollantaytambo; go on a quiet walk from Lares, crossing an impressive Inca trail to the local community of Totora; or see more of the Sacred Valley by returning to visit an ethnographic museum that chronicles the histories of the rich Peruvian civilizations of the past.
PM: Afterwards, you will enjoy a lunch in the countryside near the Urubamba River while en route to the town of Ollantaytambo, where you will be able to explore its narrow maze-like streets. Note: This afternoon, you can also go on an optional 2-hour bicycle tour (extra cost), returning to explore the Sacred Valley of the Incas, from Urubamba to Pachar. This activity has an easy-to-moderate level of difficulty. Later, you can enjoy a visit to a craft brewery that uses local products. (The brewery is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays)
AM: At dawn, we will go on a short (optional) hike to an Inca temple, fortress and age-old storage structures. The Ollantaytambo temple was originally a royal estate of the Inca emperor Pachacútec, and later became an Inca fortress against the Spanish conquerors, though the Incas always considered it one of their most important ceremonial centers. As your guide leads you on this morning tour of the temple and explains the strategic planning of its architecture, you will gain a deeper idea of the mystical history of this site, which is a perfect introduction to the wonders of Machu Picchu. We will also walk to the Pinkuylluna storage site on the mountain, above Ollantaytambo.
PM: Around noon, we will embark on a striking journey along the famous Urubamba River to Aguas Calientes, the town situated below Machu Picchu. The charm of this town is that it started as a small train stop and became a vibrant tourism setting, though still divided by train tracks.
AM: At dawn, we will begin making our way to Machu Picchu with a short uphill bus ride. Upon entering the “Sanctuary” (as the locals call it), you should be able to witness the morning sun rising over the emblematic Puerta del Sol (“The Sun Door”), illuminating the structures and terraces. While in the citadel, you will be able to appreciate the imposing and skillfully designed architecture of the guard tower, the Temple of the Sun and the royal residences of the Incas. Take a moment to sit quietly, listening to the whisper of the wind, or simply meditate and absorb the mystical energy that envelops this place. Your imagination will spin as you contemplate the history of Machu Picchu and its mysterious origins. If you want, you can go on a hike to Huayna Picchu, the iconic mountain that’s often seen as the backdrop of Machu Picchu. Its breathtaking views stretch from the Urubamba River valley to the edge of the Amazon rainforest. On Huayna Picchu, you will be moved by a sense of peace, which will endure even when you return to the lights and bustle of the city of Cusco.
PM:
Room / Cabin / Category
Price
Double
USD$ 3100

Included in the price:

  • Shared accommodations, in double or triple occupancy
  • All meals (except breakfast on the first day and dinner on the last day)
  • Transfers
  • Guided tours throughout the trip
  • Entrance fees and permits to all tourist and archaeological sites
  • Tips for staff members (except for guides) US $ 5-10 per day is suggested

Not Included in the price:

  • Single accommodations
  • Guide services in languages ​​other than Spanish and English (upon request)
  • Medical and travel insurance (highly recommended)
AM: Your adventure will begin with a trip away from the urban setting of Cusco, taking you to the Sacred Valley of the Incas, full of lush green fields surrounded by impressive mountain peaks. You will be able to explore the beautiful archaeological site of Chinchero, where colonial buildings have been constructed on Inca foundations. Enjoy a fascinating walk along the authentic Inca trails, from Chinchero to the city of Urquillos.
PM: After lunch, we will travel back in time to discover the Maras salt mines and the amazing circular terraces of Moray. It is believed that these latter were an Inca laboratory dedicated to the study of foreign plant species.
AM: City markets are generally the centers of activity throughout this region, and none is more alive than the famous Pisaq market. A morning visit will allow you to explore the unique variety of products of the area and sample the rich culture that you will discover in full on your journey to come. Travelers looking for inspiration from nature can take part in an invigorating morning walk, surrounded by incredible views of the Andes Mountains that protect this magnificent valley. You will also be able to enjoy exclusive access to the isolated village of Viacha, where you will learn about the artisan potato cultivation practices and enjoy a traditional “Pachamanca” meal that is cooked under red-hot stones.
PM: After lunch, we will visit the Pisaq archaeological complex, an afternoon excursion that offers a unique opportunity to explore the complex without crowds.
AM: Today you will have a chance to explore the Lares Valley on a beautiful journey to the mountains by way of the famous Camino del Tejedor de los Incas (“Inca Weavers Trail”). This route will allow you to visit the unique archaeological site of Ancasmarca as well as the Lares village center.
PM: After lunch, you can choose between visiting the village of traditional weavers of Choquecancha, or hiking to the turquoise-blue lakes and high peaks to the remote village of Huacahuasi, where you will spend the night. This lodge is managed in conjunction with the local community, whose objectives includes the protection of local cultural heritage and the environment while providing fascinating insights into the evolution of the original Andean peoples.
AM: Today you can choose to tour the village of Huacahuasi or go on an all-day hike. In the village, you can learn more about its heritage and daily activities, and possibly visit a farmer's house. In any case, the weavers and expert farmers of the village will share their stories, represented in elaborate fabrics full of symbols and traditional images of the Incas. You can even prepare your own lunch after taking a Peruvian cooking class with the rest of your group. Alternatively, for those who want to continue exploring these remote mountains, you can go on an all-day hike from the community of Quiswarani to the “Path of the 1000 Lakes.” While this is a strenuous trek, you will be rewarded by the majestic beauty of this natural paradise while enjoying the company of herds of alpacas and llamas that graze on the slopes as you make your way through challenging mountain passes.
PM:
AM: This morning, the Huacahuasi community will be spotlighted, as you will have a chance to learn about their heritage and their day-to-day activities. You can also choose from several exploring options. You can go on a spectacular hike along a high mountain pass leading to the ancient city of Ollantaytambo; go on a quiet walk from Lares, crossing an impressive Inca trail to the local community of Totora; or see more of the Sacred Valley by returning to visit an ethnographic museum that reveals the history of the rich Peruvian civilizations of the past.
PM: Afterwards, we will enjoy a lunch in the countryside of the Urubamba River while en route to Ollantaytambo, where you can explore its charming maze-like streets.
AM: At dawn, we will go on a short (optional) hike to an Inca temple, fortress and age-old storage structures. The Ollantaytambo temple was originally a royal estate of the Inca emperor Pachacútec, and later became an Inca fortress against the Spanish conquerors, though the Incas always considered it one of their most important ceremonial centers. As your guide leads you on this morning tour of the temple and explains the strategic planning of its architecture, you will gain a deeper idea of the mystical history of this site, which is a perfect introduction to the wonders of Machu Picchu. We will also walk to the Pinkuylluna storage site on the mountain, above Ollantaytambo.
PM: Around noon, we will embark on a striking journey along the famous Urubamba River to Aguas Calientes, the town situated below Machu Picchu. The charm of this town is that it started as a small train stop and became a vibrant tourism center, though it’s still divided by train tracks.
AM: At dawn, we will begin making our way to Machu Picchu with a short uphill bus ride. Upon entering the “Sanctuary” (as the locals call it), you should be able to witness the morning sun rising over the emblematic Puerta del Sol (“The Sun Door”), illuminating the structures and terraces. While in the citadel, you will be able to appreciate the imposing and skillfully designed architecture of the guard tower, the Temple of the Sun and the royal residences of the Incas. Take a moment to sit quietly, listening to the whisper of the wind, or simply meditate and absorb the mystical energy that envelops this place. Your imagination will spin as you contemplate the history of Machu Picchu and its mysterious origins. If you want, you can go on a hike to Huayna Picchu, the iconic mountain that’s often seen in the background of Machu Picchu, with its breathtaking views that stretch from the Urubamba River valley to the edge of the Amazon rainforest. You will be moved by a sense of peace, which will endure even when you return to the lights and bustle of the city of Cusco. Note: Tickets for the Huayna Picchu Mountain are subject to availability. Inca Rail is the railway company used for Lares Adventure. If a special train service is required, notify your Travel Specialist.
PM:
Room / Cabin / Category
Price
Double
USD$ 4125

Included in the price:

  • Shared accommodations, in double or triple occupancy
  • All meals (except breakfast on the first day and dinner on the last day)
  • Transfers
  • Guided tours throughout the trip
  • Entrance fees and permits to all tourist and archaeological sites
  • Tips for staff members (except for guides) US $ 5-10 per day is suggested

Not Included in the price:

  • Single accommodations
  • Guide services in languages ​​other than Spanish and English (upon request)
  • Medical and travel insurance (highly recommended)
AM: Following an early breakfast, you will be picked up at your hotel in Cusco by your guide and driver. The first stop will be a visit to the Inca ruins of Tarawasi, near the city of Limatambo. This will be followed by a stop in the small mountain town of Mollepata, where we will take a short break before climbing a winding mountain on the way to Marcoccasa. Proceeding along a picturesque path called Camino Real (“The Royal Path”),” this will officially begin our trek to Soraypampa Valley. This will also be an excellent opportunity to acclimatize yourself to the higher altitude.
PM: As we reach the end of Camino Real, the Salkantay Lodge (situated at an altitude of 12,690 ft. / 3,869 m) will appear in plain sight. In the background, standing like a sentinel, you will see the summit of the Salkantay Glacier, considered one of the sacred icons in Inca mythology. It is the highest mountain in the region (20,600 ft. / 6,270 m). After receiving a warm welcome from the lodge’s staff in Soraypampa, you can settle into your room and “recharge” your energy before meeting with your guide in the lounge for a snack and a briefing on activities for the next day.
AM: After breakfast, you will begin a half-day hike to Lake Humantay by ascending the slopes that border the plateau behind the Salkantay Lodge. An hour and a half later, after making your way over the final hill, you will be stunned by the sight of the lake’s turquoise water, made even more spectacular by the sight of the Humantay Glacier looming behind it. Here you will have a chance to relax, enjoy a snack, meditate in the tranquility of this magical spot, admire a traditional offering to Mother Earth or immerse yourself in a kayak ride on Lake Humantay, getting a chance to experience the majestic glacier up-close.
PM: After your descent back to the lodge, the staff will be waiting with a hot lunch. The second half of your day will be spent at your leisure, as you can opt to soak in the lodge’s outdoor Jacuzzi, indulge in a relaxing massage or even take a long nap.
AM: While today is the longest and most strenuous trek, it is also the most magical. We will start early, walking through the Río Blanco Valley and rounding the Humantay peak. As we gradually ascend the mountain trails, we will find several plateaus in the middle of the remains of a valley that was once was crossed by a fast-flowing river. The final and most challenging part of the ascent will be to conquer the mountain slopes that will take us to the Salkantay Pass, the highest point of the trek (15,213 ft. / 4636 m). What follows is a demanding descent through often fog-shrouded fields of giant boulders.
PM: After enjoying a hot picnic lunch, we will continue descending rolling hills and swampy plateaus as we make our way to the Wayra Lodge, in Wayraccmachay. The most remote of our lodgings, Wayra is located on an outcrop that offers a spectacular view of the other side of the mountain. This demanding 6-8 hour walk reaches an altitude of 15,213 ft. / 4636 meters.
AM: After a breakfast at the Wayra Lodge, we will continue our descent along the banks of the Salkantay River through increasingly green landscapes. You will begin to feel the warm air and see colorful butterflies and striking orchids as we approach the jungle. This will be a chance to meet and interact with local people as we come upon their simple houses and makeshift fences.
PM: At lunchtime, we will arrive at Colpa Lodge via an amazing zip-line located on a high outcrop at the confluence of three rivers. You will be greeted by the lodge’s staff with a “Pachamanca lunch,” which is a traditional Peruvian meal cooked in the earth by hot stones that create a natural underground oven. After lunch, spend the afternoon lounging in the sun or relaxing in the outdoor Jacuzzi while you take in the panoramic views of the lush green mountains that surround you Optional activity available: Departure by bicycle in the afternoon, riding from Manchayhuaycco to Collpapampa. Descend through a beautiful valley, where you can admire the vegetation of the cloud forest on the slopes of the valley.
AM: Today we will hike in the Santa Teresa River Valley, where you will hop over small streams fed by waterfalls descending from the glaciers and cross through fruit orchards.
PM: After breaking for a hot picnic lunch by the river, you will walk for one hour before we meet a Mountain Lodges of Peru (MLP) vehicle for a short drive to the beginning of the “Llactapata Inca Trail” that leads us to Lucma Lodge. On the way, you will visit an organic coffee plantation, one of many in that area that produces some of the best organic coffee in the world. As we proceed, you will begin to notice another shift in the climate. Here in Lucmabamba, the hot air and increased humidity signal that you are even closer to the edge of the Amazon Jungle. Optional activities (extra costs) include a full day of ziplining in Santa Teresa and mountain biking downhill for almost 8,000 feet along a dirt road possessing breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains.
AM: On a 2-3 hour climb up a path comprised mostly of original Inca steps, you will get a sense of what hiking through the rainforest is like. The lush tree line creates green canopies overhead and the constant sound of rushing water suggests that the river is still nearby. Your first milestone for today will be the top of the peak, the last one before you will reach in the Aobamaba River valley, which connects you to Machu Picchu. When you arrive at the ruins of Llactapata at the Llactapata Pass (8,974 ft. / 2,736 m), you will be delighted to find the southeast view of the “back” of the Machu Picchu ruins, a sight few travelers ever get a chance to witness. At this point, you will also take a short break to explore Llactapata.
PM: After having lunch a bit farther down the trail in a meadow with panoramic views, our final descent will take us toward the roaring Aobamba River. This will take us through lush bamboo forests, as well as through more fruit orchards and coffee plantations until we end the day’s hike at the hydroelectric train station. A one-hour scenic train ride will take us to our final stop: the town of Aguas Calientes, at the base of Machu Picchu.
AM: At dawn, you begin your journey to Machu Picchu with a short and rollicking uphill bus ride. As you enter the “Sanctuary” (as locals refer to it), the morning sun rises over the iconic Sun Gate and washes the structures and terraces with resplendent light. Prepare to be awed by the imposing and skillful architecture of the guard tower, the Temple of the Sun, and the royal Inca residences, among many others. Take a moment to quietly sit and listen to the wind or to meditate and absorb the mystical energy that envelops you. Your imagination will soar as you contemplate the history of Machu Picchu and its mysterious origins. Some may even choose a hike to Huayna Picchu, the iconic towering mountain often seen in photographs, for dramatic views that stretch from the Urubamba River valley to the edge of the Amazon Jungle.
PM: After the visit, you will have lunch in Aguas Calientes before your train/transfer back to Cusco. As night falls and you arrive at your hotel amidst and hustle and bustle of Cusco, you will be touched by a feeling of peace and rejuvenation that will linger even as you journey back home. Note: Tickets for the Huayna Picchu Mountain are subject to availability. Peru Rail is the railway company used for the Salkantay Trek. If a special train service is required, inform your travel specialist.
Room / Cabin / Category
Price
Double
USD$ 3100

Included in the price:

  • All services and transportation (vehicles and trains) from pick up in Cusco on Day 1 to drop off in Cusco on Day 7
  • Six nights lodging (5 nights in Mountain Lodges of Peru lodges, 1 night in Aguas Calientes in a 4-star hotel)
  • All meals except breakfast on Day 1 and dinner on Day 7
  • Service of a bilingual guide (English/Spanish) from Day 1 to Day 7 (other languages available at additional cost)
  • Transportation of personal belongings on the trek by pack horses/mules and/or porters

Not Included in the price:

  • Massage & Spa Services
  • Laundry Service
  • Optional Activities: Chakana Inca Cross Excursion (for the Trekking Program only), Canopy Zipline
    Horseback Riding (For the Trekking program only, subject to change)
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Bottled water and sports drinks are not included. In an e­ffort to reduce plastic waste on the trail and at the lodges, the use of refillable water bottles is encouraged. For this purpose, you will be provided with an ample supply of the highest quality filtered water, available at multiple water stations at the lodges.
  • Local taxes (18% IGV) on meals and lodging applicable to Peruvians, foreign residents in Peru and tourists traveling in Peru for 60+ days
AM: After an early breakfast, you will be picked up at 7:00 am from your Cusco hotel by a Mountain Lodges of Peru guide and vehicle. En route, we take a short break to visit the Inca ruins of Tarawasi near the town of Limatambo (approx. 1.5 hrs. from Cusco). After leaving Limatambo, we will pass through the mountain village of Mollepata, where we stop for a short coffee break before ascending a winding mountain road to Coronilla Ranch. Here, after a short period of familiarization with the equestrian team and the horses, we begin our ride to Soraypampa. This is a good opportunity for everyone to acclimate while enjoying a beautiful 3-4 hour ride. Salkantay Lodge takes its name from the majestic peak at the head of the valley — Mt. Salkantay, the second most sacred peak in Inca mythology and, at 6,270m (20,600 ft.), the highest in the region.
PM: After a warm welcome from our friendly staff, you will be shown your room and have time to freshen-up before tea and cookies. The trip leader will hold a briefing by the fireplace, followed by aperitifs and dinner.
AM: Today’s excursion takes us first to Humantay Lake, fed by glaciers far above on the slopes of the impressive Mt. Humantay. Our one-hour horseback ride there will be followed by a short 20-minute walk, which is necessary in order to reach the lake. However, the view is well worth it and those who are brave enough can go for a swim! After a quick snack, we will hike back down to where we left the horses, and from there begin a 30-minute ride to our next dismount spot: the gateway to “Chakana” (the mystical Cross of the Incas, located on a viewpoint high above Soraypampa). From here, we will begin a one-hour excursion on foot to our destination, “Chakana” itself. This excursion allows guests to enjoy the best views of the Soraypampa Valley, Mt. Salkantay and Mt. Humantay, and it will truly be one of the high points of your journey. A mystical offering to Mother Earth (or “Pachamama”) at the Chakana will be performed by a local Shaman in full view of the awe-inspiring Mt. Salkantay to top off this unique experience.
PM: We will return to the lodge for lunch, with the afternoon at your leisure. You can choose to go for a glacial swim or take a relaxing soak in the lodge’s outdoor Jacuzzi. Additionally, there is the option of riding out again for a couple of hours in the surrounding area. In the evening, the guide will brief you on gear and the itinerary for the following day.
AM: Today we continue our journey towards Machu Picchu, riding up the Rio Blanco Valley and circling Humantay Peak across from Salkantay Peak. The highest point of the ride is the Salkantay Pass at 4,638 meters (15,213 ft.). At the pass, we will stop to take in the views of the snowcapped peaks of the Vilcabamba Range in every direction, with the glaciated south face of Salkantay towering above us. Keep your eye out for Andean condors, as these are often visible in this area.
PM: From the pass, we will descend to the Wayra Lodge, our destination for the evening. A hot lunch will be served en route, while dinner will be enjoyed later this evening at the lodge.
AM: This morning you will enjoy a relaxed breakfast at the Wayra Lodge before heading down to the Salkantay River. Descending through the cloud forest through increasingly green landscapes will be an intense experience. You will even be able to feel the warm air emerging from the jungle, accompanied by colorful butterflies and striking orchids.
PM: When reaching the Colpa Lodge, the staff will welcome us with a “Pachamanca”: a traditional Peruvian festive meal prepared with layers of meat and vegetables and cooked in the middle of hot stones. All of this is covered with banana leaves and local herbs. The Colpa Lodge is located on an open plateau, right at the confluence of three rivers. The outdoor hot tub has panoramic views of lush green mountains. You can spend the afternoon relaxing or exploring the nearby orchid path.
AM: Today we will ride along the Santa Teresa river valley, through populated rural areas. We will go through plantations of banana, passion fruit, avocado and coffee. It is said that the coffee grown here is one of the best organic coffees in the world. Our trip will take us to the beginning of the “Inca Llactapata Trail,” where we will say goodbye to our horses and the equestrian staff. A short 30-minute walk, through an avocado orchard, will take us to Lucma Lodge. Dinner and accommodations in the lodge.
PM:
AM: After a delicious breakfast, we will start the last day of our trip. We will drive uphill for 2 to 3 hours, towards the Llactapata Pass (2,736 m / 8,974 ft.). There we find a distant but spectacular view of the Machu Picchu citadel from the southeast. It is a landscape that few travelers have the opportunity to experience. We will take a short break to explore the Llactapata Ruins, recently restored.
PM: Lunch will be served at a scenic viewpoint overlooking Machu Picchu. Afterwards, we will begin our final descent towards the Aobamba River, passing through exuberant bamboo forests, orchards and coffee plantations. Then we will board a train for a panoramic hour-long ride to Aguas Calientes, the town just beneath Machu Picchu.
AM: After a very early buffet breakfast at the hotel, we will go to the bus station to start the 30-minute trip to Machu Picchu. Your guide will lead an introductory two-hour guided tour of the ruins. After this, you will have the option of exploring the site on your own for approximately two more hours. Then, you will meet up again with your guide to return by bus to Aguas Calientes.
PM: After lunch, we will start the return to Cusco. The trip from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo takes about an hour and a half. Upon arrival at our destination, a private vehicle will take us back to Cusco (an hour and a half more). Upon arrival in Cusco (approximately at 7:00 p.m. or 8:00 p.m.), we will drive you to the hotel of your choice.
Room / Cabin / Category
Price
Double
USD$ 4700

Included in the price:

  • Shared accommodations, in double or triple occupancy
  • All meals (except breakfast on the first day and dinner on the last day)
  • Transfers
  • Guided tours throughout the trip
  • Entrance fees and permits to all tourist and archaeological sites
  • Tips for staff members (except for guides) US $ 5-10 per day is suggested

Not Included in the price:

  • Single accommodations
  • Guide services in languages ​​other than Spanish and English (upon request)
  • Medical and travel insurance (highly recommended)
AM: Throughout this region, city markets are generally the main centers of activity, and none is more vibrant than the famous Pisaq market. A morning visit will allow you to discover the unique variety of area products and to sample the rich culture of the Peruvian Andes. Travelers looking for inspiration from nature can also go on an invigorating morning walk while surrounded by incredible views of the Andean mountains that have historically protected this magnificent valley.
PM: Later, you will be able to enjoy exclusive access to the isolated village of Viacha, where you will learn about the artisan farming and enjoy a traditional “Pachamanca” meal, cooked beneath hot stones.
AM: Today you will have a chance to delve deeper into the heart of Lares Valley. A beautiful journey in the mountains, along the famous Camino del Tejedor de los Incas (“Path of the Inca Weavers”) will allow you to visit the unique and uninhabited Ancasmarca archaeological site in the village of Lares.
PM: After lunch, you can choose between visiting the traditional and ancient weavers' village of Choquecancha or taking an excursion to get closer to the turquoise-blue lakes and see the high peaks of the remote village of Huacahuasi. There, your group will spend the night at the Huacahuasi Lodge, which is managed jointly by the local community with a prime objective of protecting cultural heritage and the environment.
AM: This morning, the Huacahuasi community will be spotlighted, as you will have a chance to learn about its heritage and its peoples’ day-to-day activities. You can also choose from several exploring options. You can go on a spectacular hike along a high mountain pass leading to the ancient city of Ollantaytambo; go on a quiet walk from Lares, crossing an impressive Inca trail to the local community of Totora; or you can see more of the Sacred Valley by returning to visit an ethnographic museum that reveals the history of the rich Peruvian civilizations of the past.
PM: Afterwards, we will enjoy a lunch in the countryside of the Urubamba River while en route to Ollantaytambo, where you can explore its charming maze-like streets. Note: This afternoon, you can also go on an optional 2-hour bicycle tour (extra cost), returning to explore the Sacred Valley of the Incas, from Urubamba to Pachar. This activity is of an easy to moderate level of difficulty. Later, you can enjoy a visit to a craft brewery that uses local products. (The brewery is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays)
AM: The Ollantaytambo temple was originally a royal estate of the Inca emperor Pachacútec, and later became an Inca fortress against the Spanish conquerors, though the Incas always considered it one of their most important ceremonial centers. As your guide leads you on this tour of the temple and explains the strategic planning of its architecture, you will gain a deeper idea of ​​the mystical history of this site, which is a perfect introduction to the wonders of Machu Picchu. En route, we will stop at the fascinating Quillarumiyoc archaeological site to enjoy a picnic lunch and explore the surroundings.
PM: Afterwards we will pass through the mountain village of Mollepata, stopping for coffee and a visit to Yanapana, where a Mountain Lodges of Peru NGO of traditional weavers produce beautiful textiles as well as insight into their age-old techniques. After this visit, you can choose to continue on to the Salkantay Lodge by vehicle or go on an easy hike up to the lodge from Challancancha.
AM: After breakfast, you will begin a half-day hike to Lake Humantay by ascending the slopes that border the plateau behind the Salkantay Lodge. An hour and a half later, after making your way over the final hill, you will be delighted by the sight of the lake’s turquoise water, made even more spectacular by the sight of the Humantay Glacier looming behind it. Here you will have a chance to relax, enjoy a snack, meditate in the tranquility of this magical spot, admire a traditional offering to Mother Earth or immerse yourself into a kayak ride on Lake Humantay, getting a chance to experience the majestic glacier up-close.
PM: After your descent back to the lodge, the staff will be waiting with a hot lunch. The second half of your day is spent at your leisure, as you can opt to soak in the lodge’s outdoor Jacuzzi, indulge in a relaxing massage or even take a long nap.
AM: Though today is the longest and most strenuous trek, it’s also the most magical. We will start early, walking through the Río Blanco Valley and rounding the Humantay peak. As we gradually ascend the mountain trails, we will find several plateaus in the middle of the remains of a valley that was once was crossed by a fast-flowing river. The final and most challenging part of the ascent will be to conquer the mountain slopes that take us to the Salkantay Pass, the highest point of the trek (15,213 ft. / 4636 m). What follows is a demanding descent through often fog-shrouded fields of giant boulders.
PM: After enjoying a hot picnic lunch, we will continue descending rolling hills and swampy plateaus as we make our way to the Wayra Lodge in Wayraccmachay. The most remote of our lodgings, Wayra is located on an outcrop that offers a spectacular view of the other side of the mountain. This demanding 6-8 hour walk reaches an altitude of 15,213 ft. / 4636 meters.
AM: After a breakfast at the Wayra Lodge, we will continue our descent along the banks of the Salkantay River through increasingly green landscapes. You will begin to feel the warm air and see colorful butterflies and striking orchids as we approach the jungle. This will be a chance to meet and interact with local people, as we come upon their simple houses and makeshift fences.
PM: At lunchtime, we will arrive at Colpa Lodge via an amazing zip-line located on a high outcrop at the confluence of three rivers. You will be greeted by the lodge’s staff with a “Pachamanca lunch,” which is a traditional Peruvian meal cooked in the earth by hot stones that create a natural underground oven. After lunch, spend the afternoon lounging in the sun or relaxing in the outdoor Jacuzzi while you take in the panoramic views of the lush green mountains that surround you
AM: This morning we will walk along the Santa Teresa river valley, a more populated rural area. We will hike through banana plantations, granadillas and avocado orchards.
PM: After hot picnic lunch served by the river, our hike will continue for another hour before we come to a private vehicle that will drive us for about 30 minutes to the beginning of the “Inca Llactapata Trail.” From the beginning of the newly restored Inca Trail, we will arrive at the Lucma Lodge, located in the middle of an avocado orchard. There, the owner will take us on a short tour of the farm, to show how the coffee is grown, harvested, dried and processed here.
AM: After a succulent breakfast, we will head uphill for two or three hours to the Llactapata Pass (8,974 ft. / 2,736 m), from there we will have a distant but spectacular view of the Machu Picchu Sanctuary (towards the southeast) – a landscape that few travelers have the opportunity to witness. We will also take a short break to explore the recently restored Llactapata archaeological site.
PM: Afterwards, we will enjoy a lunch served at a beautiful lookout point that overlooks Machu Picchu. From here, we will start the final descent towards the Aobamba River through exuberant bamboo forests, orchards and coffee plantations. We will finish the hike near the river, where we will board a train for a short trip (approximately 1 hour) to Aguas Calientes, the town beneath Machu Picchu.
AM: At dawn, you begin your journey to Machu Picchu with a short and rollicking uphill bus ride. As you enter the “Sanctuary” (as locals refer to it), the morning sun rises over the iconic Sun Gate and washes the structures and terraces with resplendent light. Prepare to be awed by the imposing and skillful architecture of the guard tower, the Temple of the Sun, and the royal Inca residences, among many others. Take a moment to quietly sit and listen to the wind or to meditate and absorb the mystical energy that envelops you. Your imagination will soar as you contemplate the history of Machu Picchu and its mysterious origins. Some may even choose a hike to Huayna Picchu, the iconic towering mountain often seen in photographs, for dramatic views that stretch from the Urubamba River valley to the edge of the Amazon Jungle.
PM: After the visit, you will have lunch in Aguas Calientes. At that point, a private vehicle will pick us up to take us back to Cusco (an hour and a half more). Upon arrival in Cusco at approximately 7:00 p.m. or 8:00 p.m., you will be driven to the hotel of your choice.

Trip Advisor Reviews

star rating  Si quieres conocer a sudamerica no dudes en pedirles que te preparen un viaje personalizado. Tienen contactos con locales en diferentes países y te organizan un viaje de lujo. Muy recomendable

Ricardo V
June 27, 2018

star rating  Si vives en Ecuador o vas a turismo a este hermoso país en América del Sur, te recomiendo Surtrek Day Tours, conocerás Quito, Guayaquil, las Galápagos de la mano de bien organizados y profesionales guías, mis amigos y yo estamos satisfechos de haberlos contratado.

Roberto139
February 26, 2016

star rating  Hola, estuve viajando con mi familia por Bolivia y Chile a través de Surtrek y el servicio fue excelente.

ebuenavida
January 29, 2020

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