The Salkantay Trek


This itinerary is made for adventure-loving hikers and will take you through spectacular scenery in the Peruvian Andes. Explore the legacy of the Inca in the Sacred Valley as you get acclimated to the high mountain altitude, and then set off on an unforgettable 3-day trek along the Sacred Valley-Ancasqocha trail. After two nights camped under the stars, enjoy the comforts of Aguas Calientes before an early-morning hike up to the iconic ruins of Machu Picchu.

Days: 10
Best time to visit:
Ideal for: Active Hikers

Trip Itinerary

Day 1 – Welcome to Peru!

Arrive in Lima, the bustling capital of Peru, and settle in for a relaxing evening after a day of international travel. Peruvian cuisine is diverse, but invariably delicious; sample grilled meats or fresh seafood, saucy potatoes or classic chicken and rice, and start your vacation with local flavor.


Day 2 – Lima Highlights Tour

Spend the morning on a tour of Lima, visiting colonial era churches and buildings in the historic city center, stopping into the Museum of Religious Art, which is a great introduction to Peru’s blend of cultural legacies. Take the afternoon to explore the cliffside parks of Miraflores, and the shops and alleyways of Barranco.


Day 3 – Fly to Cusco, Travel to the Sacred Valley

This morning, fly to Cusco, the spiritual and administrative capital of the Inca Empire, perched high in the Andes. Head straight to the Urubamba Valley, also called the Sacred Valley, to explore a series of picturesque towns and archaeological sites. Snow-capped mountains loom majestically over winding river valley and stone terraces climb the slopes. Learn about traditional weaving from locals, and then visit the ruins and artisan market of Pisac.


Day 4 – Ruins of Moray & Ollantaytambo

Visit the remains of Moray, an impressive series of circular stone terraces thought to have been built as a way to test crop viability—there can be up to a 27 °F difference between the top and bottom terraces. Travel through breathtaking scenery to the town of Ollantaytambo and its fortress ruins that preside over the valley.


Day 5 – On the Ancasqocha Trail

Today you’ll begin your 3-day trek on the Sacred Valley-Ancasqocha trail that will take you through alpine forests, meadows, and some of Peru’s most impressive peaks. The trail starts climbing gently at Hustacancha, rising all day to the streamside camp at Qeuñacocha, 14,000 feet above sea level. Enjoy views of Ocobamba glacier all along the way.


Day 6 – Ancasqocha Lagoon

Continue climbing up to Accojasa Pass, 1,500 feet higher than last night’s campsite, which is the highest point along the trail. Gaze out over the glaciated peak of Huayanay as you descend to a small archaeological site. Zigzag downhill, along a gorge, past waterfalls, to arrive at the pristine Ancasqocha Lagoon, whose icy waters come directly from the snows of Huayanay.


Day 7 – Ancasqocha & Machu Picchu

Get an early start to the day and continue hiking down the valley to the traditional community of Ancasqocha, and then into the Sillque River gorge. With spectacular mountain vistas throughout the day, continue descending until the village of Chillca, and board the train for the last leg of the journey to Aguas Calientes at the base of Machu Picchu.


Day 8 – Explore Machu Picchu, Return to Cusco

Rise early this morning to begin your guided tour of the UNESCO World Heritage-listed ruins of Machu Picchu, one of the seven wonders of the new world. Explore the site’s main temples and its hidden corners, and then climb Huayna Picchu for spectacular views over the entire citadel and the valley beyond. After a full day of adventure, take the train back to Cusco.


Day 9 – Highlights of Cusco

Start your guided exploration of Cusco with a visit to Santo Domingo Monastery, which sits on the ancient Inca foundations of the sacred Korikancha, the Temple of Gold. Tour the colonial Cathedral, bedecked with fine paintings, and then walk through the San Blas quarter, which is home to the workshops of the most prominent artisans in Cusco. In the afternoon, take a walk up to the fortress remains of Sacsayhuamán for great views over the city.


Day 10 – Departure

Fly back to Lima, and connect with your international flight home.

Remarkable Journeys has partnered with Lost World Adventures to create this journey. We partnered with Lost World due to their well-mannered relationships with tour guides, hotellers, airlines, and ground management services in the region. In our opinion, they offer the best value and experience in the region.

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