Sacred Valley & Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu
6 Days / 5 Nights


In just 6 days, you’ll have the incredible opportunity to explore two amazing tourist attractions that seamlessly combine culture and nature. The cultural aspect of your journey involves immersing yourself in our traditions and delving into the history of the Incas. You’ll visit two famous Inca sites, Pisaq Archaeological Site and Ollantaytambo Inca Fortress, both of which are stunning in their own right.

Both of these sites were once thriving Inca villages, featuring religious areas, farming terraces, living houses, storehouses, water channels, and more. When you explore these places, you’ll gain valuable insights into the history of the Incas, which will prepare you for the Salkantay Trek. Both Inca sites also showcase unique Inca architectural styles. For instance, Ollantaytambo boasts the second-largest rocks from Inca times, transported from a distance of about 5 kilometers. It’s truly incredible how they moved these massive rocks to construct their temples.

During your journey through the Sacred Valley, you’ll also visit a local village where you’ll learn about agriculture and local traditions. After a full day exploring the Sacred Valley, you’ll head directly to the Salkantay Trailhead, where you’ll spend the night in our glass cabins. You’ll be all set to start your hike early in the morning, with the goal of reaching the Blue Lagoon around 6:30 am. Here, you can enjoy the sunrise amidst the mountains without the company of other hikers, as most will arrive later, departing from Cusco. Our glass cabins are nestled at the base of the Humantay Glacier peak, just about 1.5 hours from the Blue Lagoon. Following this, you’ll continue the Salkantay Trek en route to Machu Picchu.

Tour Price
Sacred Valley & Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu 6 Days / 5 Nights

From
$ 795 Per Person
  • Hotel
  • Included

Group Size Up to 16
Activity Level Challenging

Trip Details


    Highlights

  1. Day 1: Visit Local Community, Pisac, and Ollantaytambo

    Start: Pickup from the hotel at 7 am.
    Activities: Visit Cacacollo community, Pisac Inca site, and Ollantaytambo.
    Accommodation: Glass Cabanas at Soraypampa.
    Meals: Lunch and Dinner included.

  2. Day 2: Hiking Begins - Soraypampa to Wayracmachay

    Morning: Introduction with Alpaca Expeditions Staff and start hiking.
    Highlights: Humantay Lagoon, Salkantay Pampa, Salkantay Pass (highest point at 4,650 meters).
    Weather: Cold, windy, rainy in the wet season.

  3. Day 3: Wayracmachay to La Loreta (Hobbit House)

    Trek from Wayracmachay to Ccollpapampa and then to La Loreta.
    Accommodation at private campsite with hot shower and Jacuzzi options.
    Walking distance: 18 km. Elevation descended: 1,400 meters.
    Weather: Warm and humid.

  4. Day 4: Loreta to Camp in Front of Machu Picchu

    Morning: Visit to a local organic coffee farm.
    Afternoon: Hike along a section of the Inca trail to Llactapata.
    Highlights: Views of Machu Picchu, exploration of Llactapata Inca site.
    Accommodation: Campsite with views of Machu Picchu.
    Distance: 12 km hiked.
    Weather: Hot and humid during the day, chilly at night.

  5. Day 5: Llactapata to Aguas Caliente

    Morning: Downhill hike to Hydroelectrical Station and Intiwatana.
    Afternoon: Hike to Aguas Calientes.
    Activities: Visit hot springs, final dinner with trekking chef.
    Distance: 14 km hiked.
    Accommodation: Hotel in Aguas Calientes.

  6. Day 6: Machu Picchu and Return to Cusco

    Morning: Early bus to Machu Picchu, guided tour, optional Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain hike.
    Afternoon: Return train to Ollantaytambo and drive to Cusco.
    Final drop-off at your hotel in Cusco.

This itinerary offers an immersive experience, combining challenging hikes with cultural insights and breathtaking scenery. Each day unfolds a new layer of the Andean landscape, culminating in the awe-inspiring Machu Picchu.

Itinerary

  1. Day 1 : Visit Local Community - Pisac - Ollantaytambo

    We start our day with a pick up from your hotel at 7:30 to 8:00am. We will visit a local community of Cacacollo where Alpaca Expeditions support local Andean Women, Textiles and Agriculture are the daily work of many families and the economic livelihood for them, the enterprising women will show and teach us the elaboration of Andean textiles, we will also have the option to see the agricultural areas where they grow all kinds of vegetables,  after that we continue our journey to Pisac Inca site where you will enjoy the beauty of the site and surounding area,  Break for lunch at the local in Lamay. After lunch, will drive along the sacred Valley to get the living Inca city of Ollantaytambo, where we will visit famous inca site and appreciate how important Ollantaytambo was in the time of the Incas and nowadays. Once the tour is over, the guide will take you to the hotel where you will spend the night.  
             

    • Meals Included: Lunch and Dinner
    • Entrance Tickets: Included

    AFTERNOON: Transfer to the GLASS CABANAS

    NO HIKING TODAY
    Accommodations: Glass Cabanas at Soraypampa
    Elevation: 3800 meters above sea level
    Weather: Cold, windy, rainy in the wet season

  2. Day 2 : (Hiking Begins) SORAYPAMPA CAMPSITE – HUMANTAY LAGOON – SALKANTAY PASS - WAYRACPUNKO

    After a good night’s rest, you’ll wake up early to enjoy your breakfast before your trek. During the morning there’ll be a short team introduction between all trekkers and the Alpaca Expeditions Staff to ensure a positive family-like experience.

    Following the introduction, you’ll give your duffel bag to the muleteers to carry to the next campsite. The day’s hike will begin with a 1.5 hour steady uphill hike to the renown Humantay Lagoon. The serene views of the
    crystalline-blue water of Humantay Lagoon are absolutely incredible. If the skies are clear you’ll see the first sun rays peeking through the snow-covered peaks.

    And!… If you’re brave, you’ll have the chance to touch the almost-frozen water that locals believe can help you stay young forever! The advantage of visiting Humantay Lagoon in the early morning hours is the quiet surroundings with no other trekkers besides those in your group. Due to the popularity of this location, this isn’t something everyone can enjoy!

    After breathing it all in you’ll begin your way back to the starting point to continue to the lunch spot in Soyroccocha. This portion of the hike will be approximately 3 hours on gradually ascending terrain. On your way you’ll pass breath taking places such as Salkantay Pampa, which means outstanding views of the surrounding snow-covered mountains. These views are what make the journey the destination.

    After lunch made by your Alpaca Expeditions local chef and a well-deserved rest, you’ll continue with you’re the next leg of your hike. This next portion continues on for about 1 hour until you arrive at Salkantay Pass at 4,650 meters above sea level. This is the highest point of the trek. The group will rest there and you’ll be served hot drinks while you enjoy the views.

    From Salkantay Pass, you’ll be on the last leg of the hike for the day, which is a 3 hour downhill trek to the evening’s campsite, Wayracmachay. When you arrive at the campsite the trekking staff will have your tents all set up and your duffel bags ready.

    Alpaca Expeditions’ team will provide you with warm water to get washed up from the day so you can change into some fresh warmer clothes for the night. Then there is a happy hour with hot chocolate and coffee followed by dinner. If the weather allows, you’ll get to enjoy the unbroken views of the sky along with a brief introduction to the visible Inca constellations.

    Walking Distance: 22km
    Elevation Gained: 850 meters
    Elevation Descended: 850 meters
    Weather: Cold, windy, rainy in the wet season

  3. Day 3 : WAYRACMACHAY – CHAULLAY – CCOLLPAPAMPA LORETA (HOBBIT HOUSE)

    Your Alpaca Expeditions trekking team will wake you up early with a hot drink to help you start the day. Hopefully as you open your tent, you’ll be welcomed by the sunrise over majestic glacier peaks and clouds
    lifting from the green cloud forest. You’ll have time to pack up and enjoy a nice breakfast prepared by your local trekking chef.

    At around 7 a.m. you’ll hike for approximately 4 hours downhill until reaching the lunch spot at Ccollpapampa (2,700 meters above sea level). During this hike you’ll begin to notice the micro-climate as well as fauna and flora changes. You’ll go from cold glacier views to warm green jungle surroundings. There’ll be many different species of orchids to see as well as ferns, begonia flowers and even hummingbirds.

    After lunch and a well-deserved rest, you’ll continue your trek to the next private campsite called La Loreta (2400 meters above sea level). This hike will be approximately 4 hours on gradually downhill terrain.

    Along the way you’ll be able to explore beautiful waterfalls, rivers and more new flora and fauna. You’ll be able to experience another tropical forest micro-climate where local people farm coffee, passion fruit, papayas, oranges and avocados. When you arrive at the evening’s campsite your trekking staff will be there to welcome you.

    You’ll have time to enjoy a nice hot shower, hot Jacuzzi and perhaps even swim in our swimming pool. There’ll also be plenty of time to walk around our ecological garden to see some of the local coffee, avocado, chilies, tomatoes, and pineapples. Dinner tonight will be at our building with views of the Salkantay River. Then when you retire for sleep, you’ll be able to hear the Salkantay River.

    Walking Distance: 18 km
    Night Elevation: 2,400 meters
    Elevation Descended: 1,400 meters
    Weather: Warm and hot

  4. Day 4 : LORETA – LA PLAYA SAHUAYAKU – LUCMABAMBA COFFEE FARM – LLACTAPATA (Camp in front of Machu Picchu)

    After a delicious homemade breakfast cooked by Alpaca Expeditions’ renown local chef, you’ll start the shortest but most exciting day of your adventure. Today you’ll experience the most beautiful sights along your
    trekking route to Machu Picchu.

    You’ll explore the tropical forest and will visit a local organic coffee farm where you’ll have the opportunity to explore some of the orange and avocado plantations as well as taste some of the freshly-brewed coffee.
    During your visit to the coffee farm you’ll get a brief informational introduction to the region’s coffee history as well as its importance to the area. Then you’ll continue with your trek to Llactapata by hiking along a section of the Inca trail for approximately 2.5 hours. On your way to the Llactapata Inca site you’ll see amazing views of the Santa Teresa valley. The views you’ll be seeing along your hike today are impossible to put into words.

    At Llactapata you’ll get your first glimpse of Machu Picchu. This includes the main archaeological sites Machu Picchu Mountain and Huayna Picchu Mountain. You’ll also have the opportunity to explore the Llactapata Inca
    site and take unforgettable photographs.

    From here you’ll enjoy the last leg of your day’s hike with a 15 minutes downhill walk to your lunch and campsite area. This campsite is owned by a local family that only Alpaca Expeditions has permission to stay
    at so you’ll enjoy more privacy than other trekkers could.
    You’ll find the campsite to be a great place to enjoy the sunset and sunrise over Machu Picchu. After lunch you’ll have some free time to enjoy the views and relax from hiking.

    Before your Alpaca Expeditions local chef serves you dinner, you’ll enjoy another lovely happy hour with tea and coffee. Once the sun has set then prepare yourself for another evening of unforgettable star gazing. You’ll see the Milky Way as well as the Inca constellations much in the same way as the Incan astronomers did to predict the weather.

    Walking Distance: 12 km
    Campsite Elevation: 2,700 meters
    Elevation Gained: 400 meters
    Weather: Hot and humid during the day, chilly at night

  5. Day 5 : LLACTAPATA LOOKOUT – WATERFALLS AT HIDROELECTRICA – MANDOR HIRAM BINGHAM FARM – AGUAS CALIENTES

    Your Alpaca Expeditions trekking team will wake you up early again (5:30-6am) with a hot drink to help you start the day. You’ll get ready for the day’s activities and then enjoy your last breakfast prepared by your local trekking chef.

    The day’s hike will begin with a 2 hour downhill path with unbeatable views of Machu Picchu until the Hydroelectrical Station that was built to harness the natural 300-meter high waterfall, which generates electricity for the region of Cusco. This waterfall is one of the most impressive features of this area. here you will have the final lunch prepared by your Alpaca Expeditions’ local trekking chef and you’ll have a chance to say goodbye.

    From the Hydroelectrical Station you’ll continue to the famous Intiwatana (sundial rock). According to history, this Inca stone once worked with the legendary sundial rock in Machu Picchu to signal the winter solstice, which meant the beginning of a new farming season for the Incas.

    Once you’ve seen the famous Intiwatana, you’ll continue on the path that runs alongside the train tracks for approximately 3 hours. This leads to the town of Aguas Calientes located at the foot of the valley of Machu Picchu. This part of the hike will be interesting as it was the trail used by the American professor Hiram Bingham when rediscovering Machu Picchu.

    On his way to discovering Machu Picchu Hiram Bingham met with local farmer Melchor Arteag who eventually guided him to Machu Picchu. On your trek, you’ll hike past Melchor Artaeg’s farm. Here you’ll see many species of flora and fauna and amazing local birds such as Peru’s national bird (called cock of the rock), Toucans, Oropendolas and Parrots. Once you arrive in Aguas Calientes you’ll go to your hotel to enjoy a hot shower and then take the opportunity to visit the famous hot springs (10 soles, not included) of Aguas Calientes. dinner will be at restaurant by 7pm.Your Alpaca Expeditions trekking team will wake you up early again (5:30-6am) with a hot drink to help you start the day. You’ll get ready for the day’s activities and then enjoy your last breakfast prepared by your local trekking chef.

    The day’s hike will begin with a 2 hour downhill path with unbeatable views of Machu Picchu until the Hydroelectrical Station that was built to harness the natural 300-meter high waterfall, which generates electricity for the region of Cusco. This waterfall is one of the most impressive features of this area. here you will have the final lunch prepared by your Alpaca Expeditions’ local trekking chef and you’ll have a chance to say goodbye.

    From the Hydroelectrical Station you’ll continue to the famous Intiwatana (sundial rock). According to history, this Inca stone once worked with the legendary sundial rock in Machu Picchu to signal the winter solstice, which meant the beginning of a new farming season for the Incas.

    Once you’ve seen the famous Intiwatana, you’ll continue on the path that runs alongside the train tracks for approximately 3 hours. This leads to the town of Aguas Calientes located at the foot of the valley of Machu Picchu. This part of the hike will be interesting as it was the trail used by the American professor Hiram Bingham when rediscovering Machu Picchu.

    On his way to discovering Machu Picchu Hiram Bingham met with local farmer Melchor Arteag who eventually guided him to Machu Picchu. On your trek, you’ll hike past Melchor Artaeg’s farm. Here you’ll see many species of flora and fauna and amazing local birds such as Peru’s national bird (called cock of the rock), Toucans, Oropendolas and Parrots. Once you arrive in Aguas Calientes you’ll go to your hotel to enjoy a hot shower and then take the opportunity to visit the famous hot springs (10 soles, not included) of Aguas Calientes. dinner will be at restaurant by 7pm.

  6. Day 6 : MACHU PICCHU – RETURN TO CUSCO

    Today will be all about Machu Picchu. To get the most out of the day we encourage every group to have an early breakfast before catching one of the first buses up to Machu Picchu (starting at 5:30 a.m.). This allows you to get ahead of the crowds.

    The hotel will hold your bags for you while in Machu Picchu. This way you’ll only need to take your backpack with all essentials up to Machu Picchu. The bus ride from Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu takes approximately 30 minutes.

    Once in Machu Picchu your guide will take you directly to the best place to watch the sunrise and take photographs. Your local guide will then show you around the main sectors of the citadel for a total of 2.5 hours.
    During this guided tour you’ll learn more about the history and culture of the Inca Empire.

    At the end of the guided tour you’ll have some time to yourself to relax and wonder around. That is unless you arranged to hike Huayna Picchu* (must be booked in advance, as it sells out and costs $75 per person) your guide will show you where to begin this hike. The hike will take no more than 2 hours round-trip.

    For your return from Machu Picchu we recommend heading back to Aguas Calientes no later than 2 hours before your train departure. The return train rode from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo will take approximately 2 hours. In Ollantaytambo our Alpaca Expeditions’ staff will be waiting for you right by the station’s exit door. They’ll be ready to bring you back to Cusco by car. The car ride to Cusco will be approximately 2 hours and will have you dropped off at your hotel in Cusco.

    Machu Picchu Mountain may be hiked as well instead of Huayna Picchu Mountain. This hike is more challenging and takes three hours minimum round-trip (at an extra cost of USD $75 per person).

Price

  1. Price per person

    • $795 per person
  2. Student Discount

    • $35 off per person

    Student discounts apply to anyone who has a valid UNIVERSITY STUDENT CARD at the time of the trek or who is 17-years-old or younger. For those using a University Student Card our under 17-years-old, we need to see a copy of their card or passport at the time of booking to receive the discount.

    Please send all to info@alpacaexpeditions.com.

    More Information about STUDENT CARD

     

  3. Additional Items

    Below is a quick list of prices, but check our Additional Options section for more details.

     

  4. Huayna Picchu is the mountain that stands next to Machu Picchu. It is a 45-minute hike to the top. Even when you will do this hike on your own, your guide will still show you the trail entrance. This trek is an additional entrance ticket that we can secure for you with advance notice. 

    Your tickets will be purchased to coincide with when you need to start the trail. Tickets are either for the First Session from 7-8 AM or Second Session from 10-11 AM. We purchase the Second Session for our clients for you to enjoy your tour of Machu Picchu before you begin. This window is only your start time, and you may take your time up and down, so no rush.

    • The ticket is $75 per person.

     

  5. Machu Picchu mountain

    * Only possible to do if you have an extra day to visit Machu Picchu

    Machu Picchu mountain is the other mountain that stands above the Machu Picchu ruins. It offers even more stunning views than Huayna Picchu but takes an hour and a half to reach the top. For this trek, it will be an additional entrance ticket that we can secure for you.

    Tickets for Machu Picchu Mountain are now also within a timeframe of when you can begin – which is between 9-10 AM. Due to this limited time frame, it is not possible to hike the Inca Trail and hike Machu Picchu Mountain. You can, however, schedule a second visit to the citadel on the next day.

    • This ticket is $75 per person.

     

  6. Vistadome Train

    All our tours include the Expedition Train. This train is usually booked at 4:22 p.m., leaving from Aguas Calientes. The Vistadome Train is an upgraded train that offers slightly larger seats, windows, and even some entertainment. Usually, the Vistadome train is booked for 4:43 p.m. and travels to Poroy, a train station closer to Cusco. While this is an upgraded fee, we will still include your transportation back to your hotel.

    • This train is $75 per person.

     

Travel Info

  1. BRIEFINGS

    All briefings are done at our office at 6:00 PM the night before your trek. If you are unable to make this time, you need to coordinate another time with a member of the Alpaca Expeditions office team. Briefings are approximately 30 -45 minutes long, and where you will receive your duffel bags.

    * 2D/1N Inca Trail Trek with HOTEL does not include a briefing. Our office staff will review all the details at your check-in time.

  2. DUFFEL BAGS

    You will receive your duffel bags at your briefing. Your porters will carry them and have them returned to you at each campsite. They measure 66 cm long X 36 cm wide/2ft long X 1ft wide.

    Every duffel has a maximum weight of 7kg. Remember 4kg will be for your clothes and other personal items. The remaining 3kg will be for your sleeping bag and pad.

  3. PICKUPS

    Alpaca Expeditions is one of the only companies to pick you up directly from your hotel. As long as your hotel is in the center of Cusco city, we will coordinate this pickup based on a time that your guide will discuss at the briefing. Pick up times may vary 30 – 45 minutes based on traffic conditions and previous pickups.

    Cusco is an old city with cobblestoned streets and very narrow passageways. Smaller hotels and Airbnbs are often located on streets that cars can´t pass through. They also are frequently on hillsides with long steep climbs, making it difficult to carry luggage. We highly recommend that you book accommodations with better access. We have a list of hotels that are all comfortable with easy access to pick up and drop off. HOTEL LIST HERE.

    Some treks will allow for pickups in the Sacred Valley, which is outlined below.

    The following chart refers to possible locations we can pick you up from when beginning the tour.

      Trek   Possible Starting Locations
      Inca Trails   Cusco, Urubamba, Yunahuara & Ollantaytambo
      Salkantay Treks   Only Cusco
      Lares Trek   Only Cusco
      Huchuy Qosqo Trek   Only Cusco
      Ausangate and Rainbow Treks   Only Cusco
      Day Tours   Cusco, Urubamba & Ollantaytambo

     

  4. RETURNING TO CUSCO

    Leaving Machu Picchu requires a lot of logistics, which are all included in your tour.

    • From Machu Picchu to Aguas Calientes, you will take a 25-minute bus down to the village. Buses are first come first serve and run all day.
    • You will take a train from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo or Poroy. Your guide will give you your train tickets with train time. Make sure you get to the platform 30 minutes ahead of time.
      * Train from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo is 2 hours
      * Train from Aguas Calientes to Poroy is 3.5 hours
    • Once you arrive to the train station, look for a gentleman wearing green with an Alpaca Expeditions sign. He will then drive you to San Francisco square, Cusco
      * Van ride from Ollantaytambo to nearby San Francisco square is 2 hours
      * Van ride from Poroy to nearby San Francisco square is 30 minutes
    • Once you arrive nearby San Francisco square, you will separate into separate pre-paid taxis and driven back to your hotel.
  5. MACHU PICCHU ENTRANCE TIMES

    Machu Picchu now has two different time windows of when you can visit: either morning or afternoon. Your entrance ticket will be for only one session, morning session, and when your time window is over, the Rangers will ask you to leave.

    MORNING SESSION: 6AM – 12PM

    AFTERNOON SESSION: 12PM – 5:30PM

    ** If you have tickets to hike either Huaynapicchu or Machu Picchu Mountain, you will have some extra time until 2:30PM.

    If you would like to spend the whole day at Machu Picchu, we can add an afternoon session ticket to your booking for $50 per person.

  6. HUAYNAPICCHU/MACHU PICCHU MOUNTAIN

    Machu Picchu is most beautiful when seen from above, which is why hiking one of the mountains next to the ruins is very popular to do after your tour.

    Huaynapicchu is the most popular and must be booked in advance since it sells out very quickly. This hike takes approximately 45 minutes to the top, and another 45 minutes back down. Tickets are sold in time sessions stating when you can start this hike. The first session is from 7-8 AM, and the 2nd session is from 10-11 AM. Again, this refers to the timeframe when you can start your hike. We usually book the second session so you can enjoy your tour with your guide first. You will do this hike on your own, but your guide will show you where to begin. 

    Machu Picchu Mountain is a bit longer and a bit less popular. It takes 1.5 hours to the top and another 1.5 hours to the bottom. Again there are two time windows – from 7-8 AM and 9-10 AM and we usually purchase the second time window. 4 Day and 7 Day Inca Trail Trekkers CAN NOT do this hike and enjoy a tour of the ruins. Time will not allow for this.

    Hiking either mountain will allow you to have some extra time at the ruins once you complete, as listed above.

  7. HEALTH CONCERNS

    You must be honest with your guide about any health conditions or concerns you might have. While our guides are not medical professionals, they do have first aid training. We also work with a clinic in Cusco that can help assist our team.

    You are responsible for assessing whether a Tour is suitable for you. You should consult your physician to confirm your fitness for travel and participation in any planned activities. You should seek your physician’s advice on vaccinations and medical precautions. Alpaca Expeditions will not provide medical advice. It is your responsibility to assess the risks and requirements of each aspect of the Tour based on your unique circumstances, limitations, fitness level, and medical requirements.

    If you develop extreme altitude sickness or any other illness that prevents you from hiking, and you still wish to visit Machu Picchu by train, we will work with you to coordinate this trip. Since this will be a new trip, it may require additional fees. We will use as much of the original itinerary to keep costs low.

    If you experience issues while hiking and can not continue, a porter will accompany you to the closest road and wait while a car comes to pick you up and bring you to the nearest health clinic.

  8. GROUP TOURS

    Group tours are made up of all different types of people, with various hiking skills and ages. By agreeing to a group tour, you agree that some people might be slower or faster than you are. Everyone can go at their own pace for the trek, and the guide will work with the group to spend time with everyone. Groups might request some modifications to the tour, and the guide will work with everyone to make the best decision for the group.

  9. STRIKES

    Unfortunately, strikes are frequent in Peru and can disrupt our tours. Roads are often blocked, and trains stopped. We will make sure your trek continues as planned, even if that means leaving the night before your start date. Under these circumstances, tours might need to be canceled. But our operations department will coordinate with you in this situation. Your safety is always our top concern and will dictate how we decide.

  10. LOST ITEMS

    You are responsible for your items throughout the Tour. Please be diligent about where you leave your things and remember to remove all items from our vans, your tents, restaurant, etc. Do not leave anything unintended during your hike. Other trekkers or teams might pick it up not knowing whos it is.

  11. TIPS

    Tipping is part of the tradition of any trek to Machu Picchu. While we pay good wages to our entire team, anything extra is always appreciated. Please know that this is not obligatory and that you should never feel pressured into this.

    Typically the participants in a group pool their tipping money together for the porters and chef. The amount recommended is different per trek and listed below. For the guide, this is more personal and needs to be decided based on your relationship with them and done separately from the group. Porters and Chefs prefer soles if possible. Guides are happy with U.S. dollars, Peruvian Soles, or even your credit card 😉

      Trek  Per Porter  Chef
      Inca Trails (4, 5 and 7 Days)  60 – 80 soles  150 soles
      2D/1N Inca Trail with Camping  50 soles  100 soles
      Salkantay Treks  100-120 soles  200 soles
      Lares Trek  100-120 soles  200 soles
      Huchuy Qosqo Trek  50 soles  100 soles
      Ausangate  100-120 soles  200 soles

    * These numbers refer to what each member of the Green Machine should receive after the group pools their money. This is just a reference guide.

     

  12. TRAVEL INSURANCE

    Travel insurance is inexpensive and strongly recommended. With trips being planned months ahead of time, you never can predict what could happen. Adventure travel includes more risk than the average trip. Insurance is a way to protect the investment you have made on this journey. We can help recommend an agent to walk you through this type of insurance if needed.

  13. WEATHER

    Of course, the weather is unpredictable. Typically the dry season in Cusco is from April through October, but this does not stop rain from falling in June or the sun from coming out in December so just be prepared. No matter what month you are doing the trek, make sure that you have rain gear that includes a waterproof jacket, pants, poncho, and waterproof gloves. Many people forget about gloves, but being cold and wet makes hiking very unpleasant.

    Also, prepare for four seasons. Several of the treks through the Andes involve various microclimates and you will need to be prepared. Layers are always key since they are easy to adjust to different temperature changes. Be prepared with a warm packable down jacket since the evening will be cold.

    It’s also important to note that the weather can change a listed itinerary. There are times that routes become impassable, and our guides will be forced for your safety to rework your tour.

  14. ALTITUDE

    As soon as people book their trip to Peru, specifically Cusco, they start wondering about altitude sickness. The air at high altitudes contains less oxygen than at sea level and forces your body to work harder to get the oxygen it needs. Over several days at high altitude, your body adjusts to the lower amount of oxygen in the air. For this reason, we always recommend spending at least two days in Cusco before beginning any trek in the Andes. Cusco is a marvelous city with lots to do, so if you have more time to acclimate you won´t be bored.

    With altitude sickness, you may first feel like you have the flu or a hangover. You may have a headache, tiredness, loss of appetite, nausea or vomiting, dizziness, trouble sleeping, trouble breathing during exercise. If any of these effects become severe, please contact our office, and we will help you get to a doctor.

    Most of the time, these symptoms will be mild. We always recommend easing into activity slowly, allowing your body to adjust. Drink plenty of fluids such as water or coca tea. Coca tea has been used since ancient times to help prevent altitude sickness. Leaves from the Coca Plant contain alkaloids that help bring oxygen into your blood, helping your body avoid the effects of altitude sickness. Avoid drinking a lot of alcohol and coffee. They will cause you to urinate more often and become dehydrated. Avoid smoking. Smoking makes it more difficult for your body to get oxygen. Avoid sleeping pills. They may cause shallow breathing at night, making it more difficult for your body to absorb oxygen while you sleep.

    Remember the trek to Machu Picchu is not a race. Even those in the best shape will suffer from altitude sickness if they race to the top of the mountain too quickly. Go slow, and it will give your body time to adjust to the elevation.

    Your healthcare provider may prescribe medications, such as acetazolamide and dexamethasone, to help prevent altitude sickness. Start the medicine two days before you get to a high altitude. Continue to take it while you are at high altitude.

    You must remember that this is your holiday and you do not want to stress out about the possibility of getting sick from the mountains. Do everything slowly and drink lots of water, and enjoy the coca tea. If anything does happen and you, unfortunately, get sick, let your guide know right away. Alpaca Expedition guides are trained to help you get through it.

  15. GETTING TO CUSCO

    The airport in Cusco currently is only for domestic flights, so all international travelers by plane must disembark in Lima and go through Customs. Even if your flight to Cusco is the same day by the same airline carrier, you must grab your bags in Lima and then check them back in.

    The best way to get to Cusco is by air, and there are several options in airlines. LAN tends to be the most expensive but has the most options and flights. Expect delays or flight cancellations. Due to the high altitude of Cusco, it tends to be difficult to land, and any acclimate weather will stop air traffic. Bus travel is always available, and while the trip can be long, especially from Lima, the buses in Peru are very well maintained and comfortable. This option is strongly encouraged if coming from a city closer to Cusco, like Puno. Lima buses will take about 20 hours to arrive.

Packing List

  1. ESSENTIALS

    • Passport
    • Valid, STUDENT CARD (if you booked as a student)
    • Immigration Card (given on the plane as you enter Peru)
    • Good daypack (the smaller, the better)
    • Water storage: Water reservoir like Camelbaks are encouraged – but enough for at least 2-3 liters.
    • Comfortable hiking boots (lightweight with good soles)
  2. FOR YOUR DUFFEL

    Porters will carry up to 7 kg of your personal items. This must include your sleeping bag and air matt (if you bring/rent one). From us these two items weigh 3.5 kg.

    • 2-3 wicking t-shirts
    • 2-3 hiking pants
    • 4 sets of undergarments.
    • 4 sets of hiking socks
    • 1 Fleece
    • 1 Warm, down jacket: gets very cold at night
    • 1 Rain jacket and pants
    • 1 sun hat
    • 1 wool hat
    • Headlamp: essential
    • Waterproof gloves (even if they are ski gloves, take them)
    • Comfortable shoes for camp
    • Walking boots
    • Waterproof jacket/rain poncho
    • Quickdry towel. We provide small ones, you might enjoy something a little larger.
    • Small bottle of soap: we provide warm water each day to clean – might make you feel fresh if you had a little soap.
    • Battery Charger: There is no place to plug in while trekking!
    • Large plastic bags: to help organize and keep clean from dirty.
    • Sleeping bag: Recommend down bags for -10C at least
  3. TOILETRIES

    • Sunscreen
    • Face moisturizer
    • Bug spray
    • Handsanitizer
    • Wet wipes
    • Toothbrush and paste
    • Toiletpaper
    • Personal medication
    • First aid kit: band aids, moleskin, etc.
  4. INSIDE YOUR DAYPACKS

    Daypacks can be any size for hiking, but we always say the smaller, the better. Inside Machu Picchu, bags larger than 25L will not be allowed in. If it is larger, you will need to store it outside citadel gates. But don´t worry, they have a secure storage facility.

    • Water: we supply clean water at each meal. You are responsible for your first morning of water only as we won’t have time to filter water until your first lunch.
    • Sunhat
    • Rain gear
    • Fleece
    • Camera
    • Music (IPhone)
    • Handsanitizer
    • Toilet paper and small plastic bag for waste
    • Extra Money for Souvenirs, Drinks & Tips
    • Earplugs

Salkantay Trek Peru – 6D/5N

Please fill in our BOOKING FORM carefully with your correct personal details.

The Alpaca Difference


Alpaca Expeditions is a 100% peruvian, indigenous owned company. Started by Raul Ccolque, a former porter and tour guide, Alpaca Expeditions separates ourselves by our dedication to both our customer and our team. We work very hard to make sure that all our clients needs are taken care of throughout the tour with us. At the same time, we never forget about our brothers and sisters working tirelessly for us to make all of this possible. Responsible and sustainable tourism that gives as much to our community as to our clients.

Meet the AE Trekking Team!


Everyone on the Alpaca Team is from Cusco region, living the traditions and history they share with you while on one of our tours. Our guides are all graduates of university studying tourism, history and english. Our chefs are trained every February by a professional cooking team learning new meals, adding varieties of entrees for all types of eating. And all our porters are from HUARQUI, HUACAHUASI, PATACANCHA, QUISWARANI, CANCHACANCHA, QUEYUPAY, UMACHURCO and CCACCACCOLLO villages, very often working this job on top of maining their farms back at home. Most of our team has been with us for years, as we have the most loyal, hard working, happy employees in Cusco. We know how lucky we are to have the best team trekking and you will immediately fall in love with all the men and women who call Alpaca Expeditions their home.

Our Porter The Green Machine Alpaca Expeditions
Women Porters on the Trail Empowering Women at AE
Alpaca Expeditions Guides
Our Cooks

Our Chefs

Trekking along the mountain on your way to conquer Machu Picchu is a once in a lifetime ex...

What do we do for our porters?


Alpaca Expeditions would not be where we are today without these hardworking men and women. We could not imagine a harder job and our team does it smiling. We do our best to thank them for their hard work and loyalty by doing as much as we can to make their lives and their families lives better. All our porters receive all their equipment for free from warm winter hats to proper hiking boots. They sleep in proper tents and are given warm sleeping bags for night. They enjoy the same food we serve our clients and all leftovers are donated to their families. We visit their villages with doctors and dentists, donate school supplies and sports equipment. And our favorite time of the year is when we bring a group of porters and their families to Machu Picchu to visit the ruins for the first time.

Our Porter The Green Machine Alpaca Expeditions

AE súper porters

Our Porters represent the Peruvian people, both men, and women who are at the heart of our company. It is not possible to ...

Women Porters on the Trail Empowering Women at AE

Equality Matters

Alpaca Expeditions aims to promote gender equality and empower women, hiring first Peru Women as Porters opening the door ...

Free Medical Assistance to Porters

Free Medical Assistance to Porters

In 2019, we hired our first Alpaca Expeditions Medical Doctor to help tend to our guides, drivers, chefs…

Alpaca expeditions PORTER’S BUS

Our Porter’s bus

We treat our porters with the same dignity and respect as we do our clients. Just as our clients enjoy our…

Our Porter’s House

Our Porter’s House

As we mentioned above, our Porters like many Peruvian people come from distant villages to work our treks…

Proper Equipment for our Porters

Tents and Sleeping bags

Again, this is something unique that Alpaca Expeditions provides, and sad others are not doing. We supply…

Our Porter The Green Machine Alpaca Expeditions

Proper Equipment for our Porters

Every porter of ours receives proper equipment. That includes moisture-wicking long/short sleeve shirts…

Nutritious Meals for our Porters

Nutritious Meals for our Porters

A general comment from trekkers on an Alpaca Expeditions tour is that we serve too much food. Well…

Extra information


Alpaca Expeditions is always ready to make your trip safe and as easy as possible for you. Because these trips are a bit more complicated than your typical tour, we have put together some notes on logistics, storage, and even recommendations on where to stay in Cusco. And of course our team is ready to answer any other question, as we promise to be your partner from the moment you first contact us to our last goodbye in Cusco.

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Our goal at Alpaca Expeditions is to create the best experience for all of our clients. We create journeys that are to be remembered for a lifetime. Journeys you can be proud of and can share with everybody around you.


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