Request information

Salkantay, the most beautiful trek to Machu Picchu

22 March 2019

One of the most incredible ways to reach at Machu Picchu is through the Salkantay trek. This 5-day and 4-night hiking route crosses the imposing Apu Salkantay , the sacred mountain and the tutelar apu of Cusco, that then reaches at the Wonder of the World. Would you like to know Machu Picchu with this adventure surrounded by amazing landscapes? Know everything you need to know about the Salkantay trek:


Salkantay to Machu Picchu has everything!!




This route as it passes through the slopes of the majestic Apu Salkantay of more than 6200 m. does not leave anyone indifferent. You can almost touch the glaciers that fall 1600 m. below its peak and the best? It has absolutely everything. During the 5 day Salkantay trek you will feel the pass of different ecologycal floors, and you will enjoy:

  • High mountain
  • Jungle height
  • Rain forest
  • Towns
  • Camps
  • Valleys
  • Peace and tranquility
  • Culture
  • Nature
  • Gastronomy…


5 Day Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu




There are 5 days of walking with routes between 4 and 7 hours. Part of the route runs along mountain roads at high altitude reaching the 4600 m high of the Salkantay Pass at the second day of treking.

Remember that the fact of reaching a height of 4600m requires basic knowledge about altitude sickness. And for photography  lovers really this is an adventure that you can miss for any situation because you will see one of the most beautiful mountains in the world.



How to organize the Salkantay Trek to enjoy it to the fullest?




Salkantay Trek, like many other treks in the world, is a challenge route for many adventurers. But know we go for the key points to organize your best adventure at Salkantay Trek:

  • Physical training
  • Adaptation to height
  • The route and its difficulty

Physical preparation for Salkantay Trek:


It is recommended to start a physical routine before this trek, and first you need to know your body to know if you are going to be able to travel the route. This is not about getting there, it is about enjoying, walking at ease and reaching the goal happy. Now we have some point here:

  • You have to consider the longest day of the Salkantay Trek, about 21 km.
  • Know what happens at an average height of about 3500m.
  • Its highest point is at 4600m.
  • The terrain is simple and quite comfortable to walk.

So you know the most interesting fats , now star your training plan. We recommend the following:

  • Start preparing your body 6 months before starting the Salkantay Trek.
  • Walk or run 3 - 5 days per week interspersing breaks in between (walk 1 hour and run 40 minutes).
  • Perform this treks of 3 to 5 h. every 15 days for 6 months.
  • Travel the longest distance of the trek at least once a month. In this case 21 km.
  • The last point will allow you to analyze your fitness and you will be able to check if at the moment of truth, you are going to suffer or you are going to have fun.

Anyway, this is not an exact science. There are people who do not do any sports and do the Salkantay Trek without any problem.


Adaptation to height for Salkantay Trek:


It is really important to know about altitude sickness because this is your first enemy during the walk. Know we will talk about how to prevent it and have the best travel to salkantay trek:

The altitude sickness a disease that can affect mountaineers, hikers, skiers or travelers at high altitudes, usually above 8,000 feet (2,400 meters). And remember that Salkantay is located at 4600 m.a.s.l!!


Symptoms of altitude sickness


Altitude sickness or mountain sickness should be noted that many ski resorts are at this point and that in sensitive people may appear even at lower altitude. The symptoms are:

  • difficulty sleeping,
  • dizziness or feeling of vertigo,
  • fatigue,
  • headache,
  • lack of appetite,
  • nausea or vomiting.

But don’t worry we have the solution. It is recommended to relax and have a free day when you arrive to Cusco maybe you can take 2 or 3 days to adapt. We recommend you to take some interestings tours that are not a real challenge to your body like a city tour, or walk around the beautiful city of Cusco. Also you can take some pills and the best remedy a coca leaves tea.


Salkantay trek is  very difficult?


The Salkantay Trek is a spectacular trekking that takes you in 5 days to Machu Picchu. It does not present any technical difficulty. Yeah it demands physical effort (3/5) but really it will be rewarded day per day by its beauty landscapes. It runs through hills that are at high altitude (Abra Salkantay at 4,600m maximum height).This makes it a path not too crowded.Ideal for lovers of tranquility.


Tips for the Salkantay trek



  • Acclimatize one or two days in the city of Cusco before performing the Salkantay trek.
  • Avoid alcoholic beverages or foods with a lot of fat. Altitude sickness or soroche in Salkantay and Machu Picchu is one of the greatest difficulties.
  • Perform a little exercise prior to the Salkantay trek. You do not need to be in excellent physical shape but a little exercise will help.
  • No matter what part of the year, wears warm clothes during the Salkantay trek. The nights are especially cold in the first two days.
  • Plan up to the smallest detail the Salkantay trek on your own.

Inca Trail Programs

We organize tours for small groups, including families, friends, students and volunteers. Our tour leaders speak English, Spanish & Quechua (Andean Language) and will dedicate themselves to giving you the best independent tours in Cusco as well as Machu Picchu.

Home Inca Trail Tours Alternative Inca Trail About us Testimonials Gallery Blog FAQ Contact us

Phone: +51 84 255 305
Cellphone: +51 955 925 507
USA: +1 213 342 8370
Address: Recoleta Street C1, Zaguan del Cielo, Cusco, Peru

Merchant Equipment Store Credit Card Logos