Day 1 - Cusco to Soraypampa (3700m/12139ft)
3 hour drive and 6 hour hike
We will pick you up early from your hotel in Cusco for the 3 hour drive to the small village of Mollepata where the hike begins. The first day is about a 6 hour walk and it's not long before you have views of both Humantay (5217m/17116ft) and Salkantay (6264m/20551ft).
Day 2 - Soraypampa to Chaullay via Salkantay Pass
8 hours of trekking
It's a challenging day as we ascend Salkantay Pass (4,600m /15,200 ft) the high point on the trek. The views of the glaciers from top of the pass are incredible. It's a long climb down from the top of the pass to our campsite at Challway (3000m/9842f), amidst the tropical forest.
Day 3 - Challway to La Playa (2100m/6890ft)
6 hours of trekking
The big peaks lie behind us as we descend into the tropical forests. Keep your camera ready to capture the numerous orchids, ferns and begonias. This part of the trail can be quite muddy during the wet season from November to February. We set up camp for the night at La Playa.
Day 4 - La Playa to Aguas Calientes (2050m/6726ft)
6 hours of trekking
We start the day with a visit to Llactapata an archeological site discovered in 1912 from where we have a great view of Machu Picchu which lies about 3 miles to the west. We continue our trek down to the railroad tracks at the bottom of the canyon where we can catch the train for the short ride to Aguas Calientes where we will get a chance to clean up and spend the night in a hotel.
Day 5 - Aguas Calientes - Machu Picchu - Cusco
We need to finish breakfast early to catch the tourist bus up to Machu Picchu at 5:30am. You can enjoy a guided tour that lasts several hours before having the remainder of the morning to explore the archeological site on your own. If you want to visit Huayna Picchu reservations need to be made several months in advance and it costs an additional $60. We can return by train to Cusco either at 2:55pm or 6:10pm depending on the preference of the party.