Ultimate Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu 6D/5N
Price: $655USD Per person
Day 1: Cusco - Killarumiyoc - Tarayoc - Humantay Lake
We will pick you up from your hotel in Cusco around 5AM and then drive by van for about an hour to our first stop, the town of Killarumiyoc. Killarumiyoc is a religious ceremonial site built by the incas close to the Sacred Valley. Killa (moon in quechua) was used to worship the moon and to help keep a calendar for their agriculture. You will enjoy some breakfast here and then head to another inca site by van, 30 minute drive, at Tarayoc. Taryoc was used as a ceremonial center and a resting place for the Inca chasquis (Inca runners who delivered messages over long distances). Your final drive will be to your lunch spot at soraypmapa which is also your campsite that evening. You will drop your things in your glass cabana and have time for a small siesta before heading by foot 2 hours uphill to the amazing Humantay Glacier, the Blue Lagoon. Heading to the Blue Lagoon in the afternoon will allow you to enjoy this amazing site without any crowds – taking the most amazing photos. You will then head back to your campsite for dinner that evening and a nice sleep in our new cabanas.
* Our glass cabanas were built to allow you to sleep comfortably before the hardest part of your hike, while staring out into the amazing mountain peaks and stars at night. Enjoy a peaceful night watching the constellations.
Hiking distance: 8km / 4.97097 miles
Campsite elevation: 3800m / 12467.19 ft
Day 2: Soraypampa – Salkantay Pass – Salkantay Lagoon – Rayampata
HIKING IN ALPINE LOOKING TERRAIN
You will be woken up with hot drinks served to your tent and great views of the Andes. You will have time to pack up your duffels and hand off to your porters before heading to breakfast, prepared by your trekking chef. The hike will begin with a 2 hour gradual uphill until you reach Salkantay Pampa located at 4000m. It will be another 1.5 hours until the lunch spot, 4.400 m, which is close to the Salkantay glacier peak. From this spot, the views are magical and you might even be able to see some avalanches happening (in the far distance). After a short siesta, we will begin hiking again, 1 more hour uphill to reach the famous pass of Salkantay, 4650m. You will be amazed with the views, in front of the glacier and surrounding mountains. Your guide will spend some time explaining the mountains before you continue on for another 30 minutes along the mountain range to enjoy to Salkantay Lagoon. This is a blue lagoon located right in the bottom of the Salakntay mountain. Make sure your camera is ready – the photos of the lagoon with the reflection of the glacier peaks is outstanding. Finally, there will be a 3 hour downhill hike to reach our second campsite located at 3600m right in the cloud forest. Opon your arrival our staff will greet you, show you to your tents, and get ready for happy hour and dinner that night.
Walking distance: 16km. / 9.94194 miles
Campsite elevation: 3600m / 11811.02 ft
Weather : cold
Day 3: Rayampata – Unuyoc – Loreta – HOBBIT HOUSES
Again our hiking staff will greet you in the morning with a hot drink served at your tent and some time to pack up your belongings to hand off to your porters. Another delicious breakfast will be prepared and then you will begin another day of hiking this amazing trail. Today will be mostly in the cloud forest (make sure you use your mosquito repellent) with warmer temperatures and humidity. We will hike a gradual uphill for about 1 hour to reach the famous lookout point, Unuyoc, with views of the lush green valley of the Andes. The flowers are abundant with orchards, ferns and trees everywhere. From this pass we will head on a steep downhill for 2 hours passing local farms growing our famous potatoes and other Andean crops. You may see some Andean birds, small local faunas, and perhaps even some black bears. Little by little you will reach to the bottom of the mountains where you will enjoy lunch and small siesta. After lunch there will be 2 more hours, gradual this time, downhill to our campsite.
This is a very unique campsite just built by our team. We have created our own version of cozy HOBBIT HOUSES in a very strategic location near the river. This campsite allows you to recharge your body with hot showers, a pool and even a hot Jacuzzi. Tonight you will sleep in our new HOBBIT HOUSES a bit more comfortably. Spend time walking through the gardens enjoying the coffee farm, orchards, avocado trees. Enjoy the sounds of the river in the evening. Fall asleep early and get ready for another day tomorrow.
Walking distance: 15km / 9.32057 miles
Night elevation: 2400m. / 7874.016 ft
Day 4: Loreta Hobbit House – Llactapata ( Campsite in front of Machu Picchu )
After a delicious breakfast, you will get started on your shortest, but most interesting day of the trek. Today you will experience the most beautiful sights along your trekking route to Machu Picchu. You will explore the tropical forest and will have a visit to a local, organic coffee farm. At the farm, you will have the opportunity to explore some of the orange and avocado plantations and taste some of the freshly-brewed coffee. Also at the farm, you will have a brief introduction regarding the coffee in this region and its importance as the main farming product to all locals. As you will learn, the coffee in this region was introduced to the region after the Spanish conquest and most of the harvested coffee is exported to countries including the United States, Asia and Europe. After the coffee farm visit, you will 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 will see amazing views of the Santa Teresa valley. At Llactapata, you will get the first glance of Machu Picchu – including the main archaeological site, Machu Picchu Mountain and Huayna Picchu Mountain. You will also have the opportunity to explore the Llactapata Inca site along with your guide and take photographs for the books! From here it will be an additional 15 minutes downhill to your lunch and campsite area. This campsite is owned by a local family, and only Alpaca Expeditions has permission to stay there. You will find the campsite to be great place to enjoy the sunset and sunrise over Machu Picchu. After lunch, you will have some free time to enjoy the views and relax from the hiking. Again, we will serve a lovely happy hour, with tea and coffee, and your chef will prepare a delicious meal for dinner. Once the stars come out, you can enjoy the Milky Way and the Inca constellations – just like the Incan astronomers did to predict the weather.
Walking distance: 12km. / 7.45645 miles
Campsite elevation: 2700m / 8858.268
Weather : warm - Hot
Day 5: Llactapata – Aguas Calientes
Your trekking team will wake you up early with a hot drink to help you start the day. You will get ready for today’s activities and enjoy your last breakfast prepared by your trekking chef. The day´s hike will begin with a 2 hour, downhill path, with views of Machu Picchu, until the Hydroelectric Station. The most impressive part of this area is the natural 300 meters high waterfall which generates the electricity for the region of Cusco. From the Hydroelectric Station, you will then continue to the famous Intiwatana (sun dial rock). According to history, this Inca stone used to work with the famous sun dial rock in Machu Picchu, during the winter solstice, which was the beginning of a new farming season for the Incas. From the Intiwatana, you will continue to the train tracks, which have a nice path to walk on. The hike along the train tracks will be approximately 3 hours and will lead to the town of Aguas Calientes, located at the foot of the valley of Machu Picchu. This section 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 Machu Picchu, Hiram Bingham met with local farmer Melochor Artaega, who eventually guided him to Machu Picchu. On your hike, you will hike pass Melochor Artaega´s farm, where you will see many species of flora and fauna, including the famous Peruvian national bird called Cock of the Rock, tucanets, propendolas, parrots and orchids. Finally, upon your arrival in Aguas Calientes, you will enjoy your packed lunch. You will then go to your hotel to enjoy a hot shower and a visit to the famous, hot springs (10 soles, not included), of Aguas Calientes. In the evening, you will enjoy your final dinner with your trekking chef and say good bye to him.
Walking distance: 14km / 8.6992 miles
Night Elevation: 2000m. / 6561.68 ft
Weather : Hot during day time and windy at night.
Day 6: Machu Picchu
Today is the most important day for you. You will finally arrive to the highlight of the trek, Machu Picchu. In July of 2018, the government created a new regulation for Machu Picchu visitors, limiting the amount of time allowed in the citadel to a time period – morning or afternoon. We will visit in the morning, granting us entry from 6 am to 12 pm. Your guide will wake you up at your hotel around 4 am to get breakfast (can be enjoyed at your hotel or online waiting for the bus). You will head out to the bus station and line up, waiting for the first bus which will depart at 5:30AM and then every 5 minutes after that. The bus ride is 25 minutes to the entrance where you will again line up for entry. Please remember your passport which is needed to get inside. (Before entering, take a quick visit to the restroom – the rangers do not allow you to re-enter Machu Picchu if you need to leave for a bathroom break). Once you are inside, your guide will head to the watch tower area which is a beautiful area to take photos. Your guide will introduce the history of Machu Picchu to you and explore this amazing citadel for 2 hours – walking and exploring, seeing the most important areas inside. With the new regulations, we need to follow a circuit around, touring all the religious areas and high temples with your guide. The tour will end at the lower part of the citadel where you will are allowed to explore on your own. Those who have booked Huaynapicchu or Machu Picchu montana will be ready to begin the climb and your guide will show you the check point for those mountains. When you are done exploring or hiking one of the mountain peaks, you will walk directly to the exit area to take bus back to Aguas Calientes. You can enjoy lunch somewhere in the town and then take the afternoon train to near Cusco and then van back to your hotel in Cusco. You will finally arrive back to your hotel around 8:30PM.
* Those with tickets to Huaynapicchu or Machu Picchu mountain will be given a little extra time by Park Rangers to explore the lower area of Machu Picchu (beyond 12). If you are interested in staying in Machu Picchu longer than the time allowed, you must have a second entrance ticket for the afternoon. We can help obtain this for you.
** Those who have tickets for Machu Picchu Mountain are given a little more flexibility with the ability to leave the citadel, enjoy a quick snack, use the bathroom and then re-enter enjoying the ruins until 2PM.
Professional Guides: All of our guides studied English and tourism at Cusco National University. They all grew up in this region and have a true passion to teach others about their heritage. They are fun yet professional, and will ensure you are safe and happy.
Briefing: The night before your trek, you will come to our office for your briefing. You will receive your duffel bag that will stay with your porters, while you hike. This bag should not exceed 7 kg/14 lbs and does need to include your sleeping bag and air mattress.
Porters & Horsemen: We include a personal porter, who is responsible for carrying your duffel bag containing your personal items. There is no additional fee for this. We will give you your duffel bag at your briefing the night before, to be filled with the things you will need for the next night and day. You will not have access to your duffel bag until your arrive at your evening campsite.
Emergency Horse: All of our Alternative Treks include an extra horse for our clients to use if they need a break from trekking. Due to the path conditions, this horse is only available for the first day and a half, so please conserve your energy. If you are feeling unwell, you will also have the option to take a car to the second campsite, with the porters.
Hotel: The trek will include 4 nights of camping and one night in a hotel in Aguas Calientes, the town below Machu Picchu. We include a 3 star hotel, typically at Inti Punku Inn (or similar), if available. Your booked hotel will be listed on your confirmed invoice. Upgrades are always possible.
Transportation: All your transportation is included in this trek. You will be picked up directly from your hotel around 4:30 a.m. (unless you are staying in Ollantaytambo before the trek) and brought to the trail head to begin your trek. Your train returning after Machu Picchu is Expedition class and can be upgraded on your way home to the Vistadome train for $75 per person. Once you arrive at the train station, you will be brought back to your hotel in Cusco. Your round-trip bus ticket from Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu is also included.
Equipment: Alpaca Expeditions has the best equipment. We use Eureka Timberline 4 person tents that are shared by only two people. You will have a spacious dining tent to enjoy your meals in.
Food: The Alpaca Expeditions chefs cook delicious meals that many previous trekkers have raved about. We honor all food restrictions. Be sure to remind your tour guide of any food restrictions at the beginning of your trek. Food is typically served family-style. You will enjoy breakfast, lunch and dinner each day of the trek, along with a happy hour of tea and snacks. You will also be provided a snack each morning, for you to enjoy along the hike. Your last meal with your chef will be after breakfast on day four. Lunch the last day is not included.
Water: Beginning from your first lunch until your last breakfast, Alpaca Expeditions will supply all the water needed. This water will be boiled, filtered and then cooled, before distributing. You must supply your own water bottles or camel back. We recommend carrying about 3L worth. We will refill our waters at each meal.
First Aid: Every Alpaca Expeditions guide has received training in first aid from a physician. We conduct mandatory training sessions every February, which every single Alpaca tour guide must attend. Your tour guide will always have a first-aid kit for basic medical problems (traveler’s diarrhea, cuts, scrapes, etc.) and oxygen. We will get you off the trail as quickly and comfortably as possible, if needed, and ensure you get directly to a clinic for treatment.
Extras: We believe it's the attention to small details that separates us from other tour companies. Every trekker receives a small pillow to sleep with, a foam mattress for insulation, a day pack cover to protect their things while hiking and a rain poncho. We will work hard to create your best vacation.
Satellite Phones: Our top priority will always be the safety of our clients and our team. While we are prepared and all our guides are trained for most of the issues clients have on the mountain, being a phone call away from any doctor, hospital or friend helps everyone feel assured that they are safe. Radios, which all our guides have, are limited in how far they can reach, so Alpaca Expeditions has added Satellite Phones to every trek. Every guide will have a fully charged phone that can be used anywhere on the mountain to connect us anywhere in the world. And they can be used by our clients for non-emergencies as well. While they are not cheap to use, they are available just in case you need to check in on the puppy you left at home with grandma.
Rentals: Every trekker needs a sleeping bag, when camping. Inflatable air mattresses and walking sticks (with rubber tips) are optional, but encouraged. If you don’t want to bring any of the above, they are all available for rent:
Sleeping Bag: $30
Inflatable Air Matt: $25
Walking Sticks (Pair): $25
Huayna Picchu: Huayna Picchu is the mountain that stands next to Machu Picchu. It is a 45 minute hike to the top. Going back down is quite steep, if you are scared of heights. This is done after your tour of Machu Picchu. The cost is $75. Arrangements need to be made at least one month in advance, due to popularity. Please understand that weather is out of our control.
$655 per person
* A group tour means that it is open for other trekkers to join you. This means that your group will have varying hiking and fitness abilities. All our guides are experts on how to keep the trek moving and happy no matter how fast you hike.
Private tours are available and priced by party size.
2 Trekkers: $955 per person
3 Trekkers: $900 per person
4 Trekkers: $855 per person
5 Trekkers: $800 per person
6 Trekkers: $755 per person
7 Trekkers: $700 per person
8 or more Trekkers: $655 per person
* All our tours are priced in US Dollar.
Inti Punku Hotel
This is a 3 star hotel and is based on sharing a room – either double, matrimonial or triple. There is a single room surcharge of $30 if you are booking alone. Rooms all include private bathrooms, with hot showers and wifi. We can also upgrade your hotel, if you prefer something fancier. Please remember that the service you receive in Aguas Calientes may not be comparable to that in Cusco. Below is a list of possible upgrade options, although we can usually work with most hotels in Aguas Calientes.
La Cabana: +$40 pp shared (+$110 for a single)
Casa Andina: $40 pp shared ($110 for a single)
El Mapi: +$70 pp shared (+$170 for a single)
$25 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 an university student card to receive the discount, we need to see a copy of the card at booking. For those booking children 17-years-old or younger, we need a copy of their passport at booking time. Please send all to firstname.lastname@example.org.
More Information about STUDENT CARD
There are several optional upgrades you can include in this trip. Below is a quick list of prices, but check our Overview section for more details.
Huayna Picchu: $75 per person
Machu Picchu Montana: $75 per person
Vistadome Train (one way): $75 per person
PORTERS & HORSEMEN
While our Salkantay trek does include horses, they will only be able to join you for the first day and a half of the trek. The rest of the time, our porters will be responsible for all the heavy lifting. It is also during this first day and a half that an emergency horse will be available. After this, you are responsible for hiking on your own.
Our porters, who we lovingly call the Green Machine, are the pride and joy of our company and what separates us from others. We are dedicated to making a difference in their lives and their family's life and for that we are rewarded with the hardest working team in the mountains.
Alpaca Expeditions Porters:
Raul Ccolque Ccolque, the owner & general manager of Alpaca Expeditions, worked as porter from 2000 to 2003. While he saw some companies treating their porters better than others, he felt there was not enough being done for them and their families. We could not have a company without our porters and because of that we want them to be part of our family. We want to know them, listen to them and follow through on our promise to make their lives better.
Our porters range from 18 years old until 55 and come from several different villages in Cusco region. We employ approximately 250 porters from the following villages:
- Comunidad wakatinku 25 porters, located at 3800 meters
- Comunidad Llullucha 20 porters, located at 3700 meters
- Comunidad Choquekancha 25 porters , located at 3400 meters.
- Comunidad Pumapunko $ 25 porters located at 3700 meters
- Comunidad Kachin 25 porters located at 3700 meters
- Comunidad Anparaes 25 porters located at 3500 meters
Quechua is their main language and farming is their main economic activity. Being a porter is a second income for them.
Our Promise to Our Porters:
We understand clearly that we could not be successful without our team of porters. They have promised us that they will work endlessly to make each trekker have a magical journey, so we have made an equally important promise to them to do what we can to make this difficult job a little less daunting.
As we explained earlier, most of our porters live in a village outside of Cusco – typically 2 to 4 hours away. We cover all entrance fees (45 soles – $15 US per porter) and transportation to and from the trek for our porters, separate from their salary. They are paid directly after the trek preventing them from traveling back to Cusco before heading home. This is unfortunately not common. They receive better wages, health insurance and all their equipment for free. This includes hiking boots, pants, jerseys, fleeces, jackets, hats, flashlights, sleeping bags, sleeping bags, and amazing food to eat. We make sure they have a comfortable bed in a lovely room to sleep before (and after if needed) the trek instead of crashing on a floor like others. We visit the communities they live in and supply toothpaste, toothbrushes, soap and other needed supplies to their families. Books for their students.
This is just the beginning for us and we are always looking for ways to do more.
How much does the Alpaca Expeditions Porter Carry?
While the government allows each porter to carry up to 25kg, we keep our limit at 20kg. Each porter will carry up to 15kg from the company and 5kg of their own personal stuff. This is why its so important to keep your personal duffel down in weight and not exceed our allowed 7kg. You will see other companies carrying clearly more than the allotted weight – we will not allow our porters to carry this burden.
Keeping them Comfortable…
Every year Alpaca Expeditions provides a new sleeping bag and sleeping pad for each porter. Our jackets are all lined and warm and our boots that are provided are all waterproof.
What do the Porters Eat?
Our porters will eat the very same amazing meals you have. Our chef buys enough food to cook for all our trekkers and porters and makes enough for everyone to be too full at the end of the day. While you will notice that we always serve huge portions, none of this is wasted. Whatever is leftover after you and our team eats will go directly back home to the families of the team for them to enjoy themselves.
Helping Their Families…
All our porters are quechua language speakers who come from farming villages where they take only advantage of the seasons to grow their crops but Alpaca Expeditions will help them in many ways to keep growing their comunity especially in education, health and culture. We have different ongoing projects and hope to add many more. Some of the projects we have completed or continue doing are:
Every 3 months, we take a kit of toiletries to Wakantinku elementary school for 204 quechua speaking children. They range from 3 – 12 years old from kindergarden to 6th grade. When we arrived to this village for the first time a few years ago, kids had trouble keeping up with daily hygiene. We make sure they always have toothpaste, toothbrushes, soap, and hand sanitizer.
We planted more than 3,000 native trees, Queuña (andean polylepis), in the community of Wakatinku to reforest their village. This tree will be more sustainable than others they have used and will eventually be a fertilizer for their village to help grow more grass for their Alpacas which are the most common and typical annimals located at this village.
We covered the 2015 salary of a full time teacher in the High School of Wakatinku to teach math, art and english. This teacher has done amazing work and helped to graduate the first class from the village. We plan to continue this sponsorship and supply another years salary.
Every February we invite our porters and their families to come with us to visit Machu Picchu. Sadly, this was their first time to the ruins and a really special experience for us. Last year we went with families from Wakawasi village, a community we visit on the Lares Trek. We plan on doing this trip every February with new families to help them enjoy their own history.
In October 2015, we helped celebrate the end of the school year with 17 students and their parents and some of our porters for a trip through the Sacred Valley and Machu Picchu. This 2 day trip followed the same itinerary that our clients enjoy.
Often our clients have asked how they can help. Some Alpaca Expeditions trekkers raised money back at home to buy some computers to donate to a local village. We matched their donation and went together to donate 4 computers to the school in Wakatinku village for the kids to enjoy. This was their first experience on computers and something that has been really successful. Of course its hard for 204 students to share 4 computers, so we hope to bring some more in 2016.
To help celebrate the anniversary of Llulucha village this last July, we booked and provided transpiration for an amazing local band, Alicia de Acomayo, to play. It was a great party for everyone to enjoy.
We are working with a local clinic in Cusco to provide dental care and provide skin examinations for the children of each of our porters villages.
We have recently bought land in Cusco that is currently being constructed to create a dormitories, classrooms and teaching kitchens for our team. This is for those who do not live in Cusco to have a nice, warm place to sleep before their treks. We will have english classes, computer classes and cooking classes here for any member of our team and their family to use, free of charge. This is a huge project for us that we are really excited about.
This is a touch of the projects we have done and continue to do. We are a small local company here in Cusco who promises to be as dedicated to our team as they are to us. We are lucky enough to have the best porters in the region and we feel responsible to make sure they are healthy, strong and capable of providing their families with the best life possible.
THE GREEN MACHINE
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.
Any extra luggage you have with you can be left safely in Cusco at either your hotel or with us at the Alpaca Expeditions deposit while you trek. We will grab from you the morning of your trek and return once you are back in Cusco. Make sure your bags have some kind of identification on them so they are easy to locate.
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. This is why we always recommend spending at least two days in Cusco before beginning any trek. If you have more time, even better. Cusco is an amazing city with a lot to do, so 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 which helps 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 when they race to the top of the mountain too quickly. Go slowly, it will give your body time to adjust to the mountain.
Your healthcare provider may prescribe medicines, 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. Drink lots of water. And enjoy the coca tea. If anything does happen and you unfortunately get sick, let your guide know right away – all Alpaca Expeditions guides are trained in how to help you get through it.
Of course 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 – just be prepared. No matter what month you are doing the trek, please 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. Many of the treks through the Andes involve many micro-climates and you will need to be prepared for all seasons. Layers are always key as they are easy to adjust to the different temperatures. And evenings will always be cold, so please be prepared with a warm winter-weight jacket.
Every Alpaca Expeditions guide has received training in first aid from a physician. We conduct mandatory training every February – every single Alpaca guide attends. When guiding you, they will have with them a first aid kit for basic medical problems (traveler’s diarrhea, cuts/scrapes, etc.) and oxygen. They know how to make you feel better.
In case something unexpected happens and you feel you can no longer complete the trek, they will figure out the safest and quickest way off the course and to a clinic. You will never be left alone, you will have a member of the team escort you every step of the way until safely with a doctor. When you are feeling up to it, we will make sure that you still have the chance to visit Machu Picchu and re-connect with your group, traveling by train comfortably.
To protect your travel investment, we highly recommend the purchase of travel insurance. Obtaining travel insurance before you leave home is strongly encouraged and very easy. In fact, we work with a great agency in the United States that has helped to make it easy and affordable. This is a great way to protect yourself while visiting Peru.
If interested in booking through our trusted partner, Ahart, Frinzi & Smith, CLICK HERE.
Alpaca Expeditions uses biodegradable soap and transports all our garbage back to Cusco. Our porters are trained to look after the trail and pick up any waste from other groups, as well. We also use environmentally-friendly chemical portable toilets that allow us to pack waste out. We believe in leaving no footprint behind.
Alpaca Expeditions is really proud of the work we do for our community. This is a main focus for our company. We have worked with villages directly to help supply them with needs their families were missing. We have supported local schools with by giving them computers and books. We currently sponsor a teacher at the village most of our porters come from to ensure their children are offered the best education.
We buy all our food from local farmers and markets and serve the freshest ingredients. We provide English classes for all our team: guides, porters, chefs and drivers. And we are building a house for our porters to give them a safe and comfortable place to stay before and after our treks so they no longer need to sleep on the floor of a friend.
And twice every year we bring our porters and their families to Machu Picchu. This is our favorite trip to do as they guys who work tirelessly have never visited the Lost Citadel of the Incas. Showing them this place is our biggest honor.
We are always looking to do more and for partners. Please let us know of your ideas and we will work to help.
Alpaca is dedicated to making sure we have the best equipment available. Casual Adventure Camping Store is a family owned business in the United States that is dedicated to the outdoor travelers needs and helps us with all our equipment needs.
Enjoy a good night’s sleep in our spacious Eureka tents. All our tents are 4 man tents, but you will only have to share with one other trekker leaving lots of room to spread out comfortably and store your duffels. They are an A-frame design with entrances on both sides of the tent. They also include a little vestibule in front, giving you some extra outdoor space to leave your boots and walking sticks so you don’t have to bring in dirt. We are proud to be the only company to use these tents.
Our Toilet Tents
No need to add some additional hiking in the middle of the night when you have to use the bathroom! We set up our spotless, environmentally friendly, toilet tents right at your camping site and lunch sites so you don’t have to bother with the park toilets that are not in great condition. This is our way to lessen our footprint on the environment while adding the convenience and luxury of a private bathroom to your trekking adventure.
A foam mat is included to separate and insulate you from the ground. For added comfort you may want to consider upgrading by renting an inflatable sleeping pad which adds 3 inches of comfort on top of the provided foam mat to help you sleep like a baby alpaca each night on the Andes. We use Thermarest and Eureka inflatable air mattresses.
Our Sleeping Bags
We use only mummy style sleeping bags that are 100% down for -15°C/5°F . Please note that if you are over 1.95 meters / 6´4" tall then you won't be able to find a sleeping bag rental in Cusco. In this case it is recommended to bring your own. For everyone else, you will have a great night's sleep in this comfy, warm bag. We provide liners to everyone that are machine washed between every use. These do need to be included in your duffel weight and weigh 2 kg.
Our Walking Sticks
All our sticks are black diamond and fold up for when you are not using them. They are sturdy and adjust to your height. Even for those of you who are great trekkers, having a set of sticks is helpful on all treks. Especially if the weather turns bad or just heading down some of the steeper portions of the hike.
Personal Porter Included
All of our treks include porters, who are responsible for carrying and setting up all equipment. They will also carry your personal duffel, which you will receive at your briefing the night before your trek. This duffel can not exceed 7 kg/14 lbs, and must include your sleeping bag and air mattress.
Each Alpaca Expeditions porter is given a proper uniform, salary and insurance. They are the backbone of our company.
- 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)
FOR YOUR DUFFEL:
Porters will carry up to 8 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.
- 3-4 wicking t-shirts
- 3-4 hiking pants
- 6 sets of undergarments.
- 5 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
- Bathing suit (Optional for hot springs)
- 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
- Face moisturizer
- Bug spray
- Wet wipes
- Toothbrush and paste
- Personal medication
- First aid kit: band aids, moleskin, etc.
INSIDE YOUR DAYPACKS:
Daypacks can be any size for hiking, but we always recommend the smaller, the better. Inside Machu Picchu, no bag larger than 25L will be allowed in. If larger, you will need to store outside citadel gates.
- 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.
- Rain gear
- Music (IPhone)
- Toilet paper and small plastic bag for waste
- Extra Money for Souvenirs, Drinks & Tips
"The Journey is the Destination"
Monday through Saturday 9AM - 1PM & 3PM - 7:30PM
Sunday 4:30PM - 7:30PM
SALES TEAM HOURS
Monday through Friday 9:00AM - 1:00PM & 3:00PM - 7:30PM
Saturday 8:30AM - 1PM
**All Bookings done during weekends will be confirmed Monday morning.**
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