Salkantay Trail, an alternative trek to the Inca Trail Salkantay Trek is perhaps one of the most incredible hikes in the Cusco region due to the competition offered by the Inca Trail, which is world-famous and promoted by GoMachuPicchu.Tours
The variety of flora and fauna and the various towns along the way made it one of National Geographic Adventure Magazine’s top 25 adventure trips worldwide. The end of the Salkantay trail takes you to the small tourist town of Aguas Calientes and the Inca citadel at Machu Picchu.
The Salkantay Trek or Salkantay route is an alternative to the famous Inca Trail to reach Machu Picchu. This is a slightly strenuous route as it involves a pass at 4600m elevation, but it is more beautiful and possible to hike the Salkantay route in Peru.
The Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu is around 72 kilometers, preferably covered in 5 days and 4 nights. The Salkantay Trek walking trail could be completed in four days and three nights. The last day is all about the visit to Machu Picchu.
The climate is generally pleasant during the day and hot and cold at night. The temperature can drop below zero degrees in some places, especially on the first night. The best time for the Salkantay trek is from May to September, when the weather is more relaxed but rain is less likely. The rainy season lasts from December to March.
The Salkantay trekking trail has no technical difficulties; it is signposted, and all kinds of hikers walk it. But it’s difficult; you must walk a lot at high altitudes, so there is a risk of altitude sickness. It would be best if you were prepared and adapted and, as always, had travel insurance.
Yes and no. Acclimatized and in relatively good shape, you can hike the Salkantay Trek in Peru. Each hiker’s Salkantay route has to check their physical condition and, above all, their acclimatization level. There are alternatives to combining the adventure through the Salkantay, which is riding horses for specific days, to enjoy your vacation much more.
No, you won’t get lost on a hiking trail. It’s hard to get lost. The Salkantay Trail is well-marked and filled with hikers and residents of the Salkantay Trail tour circuit en route to Machu Picchu.
Yes. Fortunately, and unfortunately, it is a bustling route. In an emergency, the tour guide always carries a first-aid kit.
We can also always request assistance from other organized groups of travel agents and horses in the area or make satellite calls to request a rescue helicopter.
Also, each stage has escape routes at the end of the Salkantay Trek Trail. Our guides and support teams are trained and prepared for any eventuality.
Yes. Positively yes. We recommend that you spend at least two or three days in Cusco. Drink plenty of water (juice or tea made from fresh coca leaves), get plenty of rest, and walk to weigh yourself.
If you feel that your body is reacting more or less correctly (considering that you are more than 3500 meters above sea level around Cusco), you are ready for the trip to the Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu.
It’s cold; it’s pretty freezing. It depends on the time of year you will go on the Salkantay road, “the first night of Salkantay.”
However, the night and early morning temperatures will drop below freezing for at least the first two days of the Salkantay route. During the day, it will be warm enough to enter the forest in the Amazon region of Machu Picchu.
The idea is to hike this route during the dry season, from April to November. It is when it is coldest, but there is little chance of rain. From December to March, it is the rainy season. “You can hike the Salkantay Adventure in the rainy season; the important thing is to bring complete rain gear.”
Yes. You can buy water every 3-4 kilometers on the Salkantay hiking trail. There are also several streams of natural water; visitors can fill their water bottles, but first, they must purify them with purifying tablets, filters, etc.
The Salkantay trek is not very strenuous, but reaching the highest point at 4,650 meters above sea level will require you to be in good shape. We recommend spending a few days before visiting Cusco or the Sacred Valley to avoid discomfort (altitude sickness) while climbing the Salkantay Trail.
We recommend chewing on coca leaves (available for S/2 at any market in Cusco) or coca candies. So-called Soroche tablets, a highly effective treatment for altitude sickness, are available in all Peruvian pharmacies.
At 4,645 meters above sea level, the Salkantay Pass is the most challenging part of the trail. Expect wind and cool temperatures. Some excursionists may experience symptoms of altitude sickness called “Soroche.”
Double yes! The Salkantay Trek is one of the best Peruvian hikes in South America, and the trail is impressive.
Although the Salkantay Trail is challenging and rises more than 4,500 meters from Soraypampa (3900 meters), the Salkantay Trek offers incredible panoramic views, including views of the Salkantay and Humantay Glaciers and the beautiful Amazonian forests of the Santa Teresa Valley.
Yes. The Salkantay Trek goes higher and is known for the challenging mountainous terrain of the Andes and the Amazon of Cusco. The Salkantay trail, compared to the Classic Inca Trail, has less distance to walk: the Salkantay with the Short Inca Trail has a length of 39.9 km (24.7 miles), while the Classic Inca Trail has 42 km (26 miles).
Walking sticks are guaranteed to make walking more manageable and reduce pain during and after walking. For aluminum trekking poles, it is necessary to bring rubber tips so as not to damage the network of the Salkantay Trek Trails.
Trekking poles are prohibited in the Inca citadel of Machu Picchu because they disrupt traffic or cause accidents. In Machu Picchu, only older adults or people with visible physical disabilities can use trekking poles.
We recommend booking the Salkantay Trek Trail service four months in advance to obtain service for the high season. The high tourist season in Machu Picchu is from May to October.
However, you can book the Salkantay Trek Trail two months in advance, from October to December, and three weeks in advance.
Visitors must respect the protocols indicated on each tourist circuit.
2024: strictly prohibited!