Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu via Palcay – 5 Days is perfect for nature lovers. The trekking is amazing and you are not sharing the path with hundreds of other people. Explore the remote regions of the Palcay Valley trail and get your best views of Salkantay, this trail was one of the main trade routes for coca leaves, cacao, and potatoes.
The Palcay trek winds through some of the most spectacular scenery the area has to offer; passing glaciers, sacred mountains, waterfalls, lagoons, and remote communities. We visit a rarely explored Inca ruin in the Aobamba Valley and we trek through the cloud forest and tropical jungle. The route is truly unique!
Huaynas Expeditions is excited to be the only company to offer this new multi-day itinerary, and by offering this alternative to the Inca Trail we believe that we are also helping preserve these trails for future generations.
Departure & Return Location:
Pick up from your hotel (4:00am – 4:30am).
Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu via Palcay – 5 Days highlights:
A non-refundable deposit (varies depending on tour) is payable from the Client to Huaynas Expeditions when reserving any Product. If the reservation is made 7 days or fewer before departure, full payment is required at the time of booking. Depending on the original booking method, the client should send the non-refundable deposit to Huaynas Expeditions or the authorized Agent through whom they made their reservation.
A pre-tour briefing is given to you, ideally two days before the start of the trek. This is comprehensive information on the tour schedule, required gear, altitude, weather, etc. Questions and concerns will be clarified so that you fully comprehend the tour schedule.
It is strongly suggested to be progressively acclimatized; thus, you should arrive in Cusco 2 days previous to trek departure. Altitude sickness causes you a headache, stomache, hands tingling, etc. There is certain medicine you may take to avoid altitude sickness, for instance acetazalomide; moreover, it is helpful to have coca tea; and hot liquids to not become dehydrated. You must descend as the ultimate emergency if you develop serious altitude sickness.
If your hotel is located in the Historical Center of Cusco, Huaynas Expeditions will pick you up there. Although your guide will schedule the pickup time during the briefing, please be aware that the pickup time could change by up to 20 minutes due to traffic.
Cusco is an ancient city, and there are lots of winding cobblestone streets there. It may be challenging to move luggage to some hotels and Airbnbs because they are situated on car-free streets or long, including inclines. Booking lodging with adequate access is something we strongly advise.
You’ll be given a canvas case or duffel bag during your briefing. Our horses will transport them, and the horsemen will hand them to you as you arrive at each camp. They are 60 x 24 x 22 centimetres (23.6 x 9.45 x 8.66 in).
Each duffel bag can only contain a maximum of 7 kilogrammes (15.4 lb), which includes the weight of your clothing, sleeping bag, and other personal belongings.
Strikes and demonstrations are frequent in Peru, which may stop some of our tours. Roads can be stopped, and train tracks can be taken over. However, we will attempt to keep your vacation as initially planned, even if it means leaving the night before the scheduled date. Under these conditions, trips may potentially be cancelled. In case of changes or cancellations, our operations department will manage everything with you. Your safety is our priority, and our decisions will be taken to protect it.
Because group trips are made up of various persons, physical states and ages may differ. You acknowledge that some persons may be faster or slower than you if you choose to participate in a group trip. As a result, everyone on the road may proceed at their own speed.
It is conceivable that a group may want to change the itinerary; however, after discussing with all participants, the guide will determine if such changes are allowed.
We highly advise you to buy comprehensive travel insurance before departing. A comprehensive travel insurance coverage that covers everything from high-altitude treks to unforeseen trip adjustments is a must-have travel gear. Please remember that your standard medical insurance plan will not cover some possibilities in your own country. We suggest searching for a plan that covers the following coverage:
While we try to be understanding when situations arise, the fact is that Trip Changes and Trip Cancellation incur penalties.
To book the below things in your name, we require a photo of your passport’s bio page (Peruvian Government Requirement). Please keep in mind that each traveler must be aware of the re-entry laws for their place of residence/citizenship. Some nations require a passport valid for 6 months beyond the travel date. Please confirm that your passport is current and meets your country’s and residency standards. We can purchase your flights with an expired passport, but we will require a copy of the current passport as soon as you receive it in order to update your tickets.
Most countries are permitted to obtain a visa at the point of arrival. Only a few nations require visas to be obtained in advance. Please remember that each tourist is responsible for determining whether or not a visa is required before admission. Please remember that tourist visas are usually valid for 90 days or less and require proof of return travel.
Please be aware of where you leave your belongings, and remember to take everything with you once you leave our transportation, tents, or restaurants. You are solely responsible for your items throughout the trip.
Our objective is to provide great treks, tours, and adventure experiences while adhering to environmental, sustainable, ethical, and socially conscious travel practices. We make every effort throughout our excursions to avoid negative affects and enhance benefits to the local people and natural ecosystems we visit. We pay fair, livable rates to ensure that we employ and retain the best guides and support workers. We follow worldwide sustainable tourism criteria and have continuous community projects and charity activities that benefit four or more local Andean villages.
We take pleasure in offering five-star service before, during, and after your vacation. Huaynas Expeditions is committed to providing exceptional customer service and adventure experiences.
When walking over tough mountain terrain at high altitudes in unpredictable weather, it is critical to have the best equipment possible. We supply Mountain Hardwear 4-season tents (3 seasons for Inca Trail because of warmer weather), extra thick mattress mats, dry bags for your overnight gear, and other amenities to ensure a safe and enjoyable trek.
Any hike or tour can be tailored to your travel, fitness, financial, and time constraints. Do you need a journey or tour for a business or work event, a charity organization, or any significant occasion? Get in touch; we can handle everything!
As it should be, our journeys leave nothing but smiles and footprints.
We care about the environment, which is why we reduce, reuse, and recycle. Our equipment is reusable (no paper or plastic plates/cups/utensils), we buy locally and avoid paper/plastic packaging, and we recycle anything we can. This is not the norm in Peru, but we intend to make it so one day soon!
All of our staff are enthusiastic about their jobs. Who wouldn’t want to work in an office surrounded by gorgeous mountains and endless vistas? We are happy to provide our guides and employees with the highest rates in the industry.
You are going to be collected from your hotel at 4:30 am. And you will be driven for 3 hours and 30 minutes to Soraypampa; where we have a delicious and nutritious breakfast. The first section of our Salkantay trek via Palcay will be a 2 hour uphill to the awesome teal electric Humantay lake. Once we arrive there, our tour guide will lead us to the most incredible lookouts; and also he will tell you interesting facts about glaciers, Andes, and highlander worldviews.
Next, we descend for 45 minutes to Soraypampa to then turn left for 1 hour and 30 minutes to Salkantaypampa, where we will enjoy a yummy hiking buffet lunch. This section will be crowded with rugged mountains and adorned by the imposing view of the Salkantay snow-capped mountain.
After resting for 30 minutes, we will climb up for 3 hours to Pampa Japonesa, where our tents are pitched. If our mother earth would bless us with a clear sky, the views of the snow-capped mountains are gonna be fantastic. Upon our arrival at the camp, our Huaynas Expeditions porter team will provide you with a bucket of lukewarm water, a small towel, and a soap for you to wash up, get comfortable and rest under your already pitched tent. At night we´ll have tea time and a delicious buffet dinner.
Day 2 is the most challenging and starts early. You will be gently woken by one of our porters with a steaming hot cup of freshly brewed coffee or coca tea. Emerging sleepily from your tent, from our position at the foot of Mt. Salkantay, the sunrise is almost guaranteed to be spectacular!
After a delicious breakfast, we will begin a sharp ascent for 1.5 hours to the highest point of our hike at the Inka Chiriaska pass (4,937 m/16,197 ft). Here, not surprisingly, the views are breathtaking. We will spend time taking in the views and resting before descending for 2 hours to Sisaypampa. After another short rest, we start climbing again for 2 hours until we reach the Palcay Pass (4,708 m/15,446 ft). This is the steepest section of the trail so we will take our time and, once again, your guide will ensure the group stays together.
The view from the Palcay pass stretches right across the valley floor between the Palcay and the Salkantay mountain. After enjoying the views, we walk downhill for around an hour to our lunch spot in the tranquility of the Palcay valley (4,146 m/13,602 ft).
It is then 3 more hours of hiking to reach our campsite, this time located in a beautiful remote location, very close to the archaeological site of Inka Tambo (3,452 m/11,325 ft). Once at camp we will be served hot drinks and a delicious dinner before retiring for the evening.
Once again, we get up early to enjoy a great breakfast before continuing our hike to Hidroelectrica. Unlike day 2, our hike today will be mostly downhill, but with a few short climbs as we cross from the cloud forest to the rainforest. The day will be long though and we will finish just before nightfall.
Throughout the day we will be hiking through the jungle and so will be able to observe many different plants native to the area. We will pass wild orchids growing on the side of the trail, stop at spectacular waterfalls and cross some spectacular (and sometimes scary!) bridges. Our guides take pride in their knowledge of all the sights along the trail, and so will be happy to share lots of information with you.
We will of course stop for lunch during the day, and dinner will be served at yet another beautiful campsite.
Day 4 starts a little differently! This morning before starting our hike we will have the opportunity to see the famous “Cock of the Rocks” in its natural habitat. It is a magical moment seeing the exotic beauty of these endemic birds that are also the national bird of Peru.
Our hike today is an easy 4 hours on flat terrain to Aguas Calientes nestled at the foot of Machu Picchu. Arriving in the town we will enjoy lunch in a local restaurant before checking in to the hotel where we will spend the night.
Dinner at a local restaurant is included in the price of the trek (drinks excluded).
After a very early breakfast at your hotel, we take one of the first buses (5:30 am) along the winding road to Machu Picchu to see the magnificent sunrise. Your guide will then give a 2 1/2 -hour walking tour of this breathtaking site, named as one of the new 7 wonders of the world.
It is hard to put into words the impact of a visit to this sacred, spiritual place. Despite its popularity, there remains a sense of wonder at the beauty and architectural brilliance of the city. No matter how many photos you may have seen, witnessing it firsthand is an experience that is truly unforgettable.
Our local tour guides are experts on the history of the site and they will bring to life the magnificent buildings that you see around you. You will also smile I’m sure at the sight of the wild Llamas roaming freely on the ancient stone walls!
If you have elected to climb Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountains you can begin the hike once your guided tour concludes or alternatively you may choose to just spend more time by yourself exploring the site or just sitting in contemplation. Around lunchtime, we will take the bus back down to Aguas Calientes.
Arriving back in the town you will board the Expedition train to Poroy or Ollantaytambo. From here you will travel by private transportation to Cusco and back to your hotel. Your arrival time in Cusco will depend on the time of your train ticket but will be some time in the evening.
Note on Itinerary: Please keep in mind that itinerary changes are possible for various reasons (safety, weather, natural phenomena, strikes, etc.). For example, if the weather is extremely bad, the trail may be unsafe, and we may be forced to cancel or change the schedule, or we may be able to substitute another trek/tour instead, depending on the conditions. And we will make it an unforgettable experience!
We also offer a special service only for you or your group, you have the power to choose the size of your group and the date of departure, we will never add other people since it will be organized only for you.
Our Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu via Palcay – 5 Days private service, includes additional items such as:
Our prices for the Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu via Palcay – 5 Days are reasonable and are in different packages with the prices that are handled in the city of Cusco, and discounts will apply automatically for groups of over 5 people when booking this tour together at the same time.
We are a local tour operator that never shares service with any other company in Cusco, most agencies in Cusco share their service to save operating costs with poor quality. We guarantee to make the trip even if there are only 02 people in your group.
Our booking process is simple and you can secure your trip with only a 30% deposit and pay the rest at the destination.
*Remember that age is considered at the time of completion of the trip.
We want your vacation to Peru to be as enjoyable and stress-free as possible. This section contains answers to any inquiries regarding going with Huaynas Expeditions. Please read the following information; it will assist you if you have any queries regarding our services.
We have the best and easy booking system; learn here how to book any tour with Huaynas Expeditions.
You’ll pay your remaining balance once you arrive in Cusco and in cash in US dollars or soles (Peruvian currency) to the change of the day. If you prefer payment through PayPal, you’ll be charged an additional 6% due to bank commissions. It is better to pay us with cash because there is no transaction fee.
Of course! During the tour to Machu Picchu, your main luggage can be stored in our office or at your hotel. Both of them are free.
Usually, it is not accepted since the permits, and the train tickets are not allowed to change the date or transfer to another name.
But if you need it, we’ll need to buy new permits and train tickets and the cost you’ll pay for it.
Yes! You must bring your original passport, which must be the same one you sent us at the booking time. Your passport will be checked at Machu Picchu checkpoint and when you board the train.
Updating passport numbers: If you are renewing your passport, go ahead and email us a copy of your old passport to book your Machu Picchu ticket. If you no longer have your old passport, any government issue ID will be accepted, as long as the name is the same. Once you receive your new passport, please email us a copy of your new passport ASAP to change the information about your permits and train tickets.
Yes, you can book your hotel. It will decrease the price of $30 per person. If you decide to book your own hotel, don’t forget to tell us where you plan to stay so our guide will take you there safely.
We receive reservations at least 1 week in advance. However, seats are limited and are always subject to availability. Both the permits for Machu Picchu and the train ticket and permits for the mountains of Machu Picchu and Huayna Picchu are in high demand, sometimes selling out months in advance. For this reason, we recommend that you make your reservation as far in advance recommendable 2 or 3 months in advance.
The Expedition and Vistadome categories offer comfortable leather seats and include a snack and hot or cold drink per person. The first and main difference between both categories is that the Vistadome train has windows on the roof of the cars, which allows a panoramic view of the outside. The second difference is that the Vistadome train offers entertainment services on board, such as typical dances and parades.
If you want to get the student discount, the following requirements must be met:
The university card must meet the following requirements:
If you meet the requirements above, you will get the following discount:
All students have to send a copy of their passport and student card at the time of booking to get the student discount.
Tipping is not required, but it is appreciated if you are satisfied with the services. Even though it might not be familiar in your country, the people who will look after you during the tour place a lot of importance on it. Many Huaynas Expeditions’ destinations encourage top-notch service and are a foundational aspect of the travel and tourism sector. It’s up to you how much to tip based on how well you thought out the tour and how long it lasted. Remember that leaving a tip is optional and should only be done if you receive first-class service.
Yes, Huaynas Expeditions is a local sustainable & responsible tourism operator; for that, we incorporate the universal principles of tourism: protect the environment and benefit the local communities by respecting their culture and religion. With this in mind, we have trained all our staff to know, understand and appreciate the local places and their people.
Our guides make us so happy! Their English is excellent, and they are extremely professional. They have a great deal of knowledge and love for the history and heritage of the Incas. Constant professional and personal growth is a priority for our tour guides. They conduct research to make sure that the Inca and Andean cultural theories you are given are accurate and widely accepted. Our team members are smart, athletic, and fun-loving. All of them have academic backgrounds in archaeology, tourism, botany, history, or anthropology.
You should have at least 48 hours or more in Cusco. It’s recommended to enjoy these days in the city of Cusco and in the Sacred Valley.
When making plans for a long-awaited dream journey, choosing the right travel agency or tour operator is the most crucial option you will make. Initially, some businesses might appear more affordable. But if you dig a bit further, you’ll discover why booking with Huaynas Expeditions ensures that your trip will be as remarkable as it can be.