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This is the most difficult and most dramatic of the hikes in the Andes. It is really a marvelous trek, combining the challenge of high altitude trekking on remote trails around Salkantay with walking along the classic Inka trail.

This trek takes you through the shadow of the wild one, the Salkantay snow mountain (Spiritual God) over the high pass of Inkachiriasq’a ( 5000 meters above sea level ) and down to the remote farms and steep valleys to Wayllabamba. Then it follows the Urubamba river along the little known path decorated with exotic flowers and plants, mostly orchids, bromeliads and begonias, and goes to the spiritual home of the Incas, Machupicchu.

This hike takes six days and is quite gruelling. However, it is a wonderful walk combining both the physical and spiritual aspects.


Day 1.- Cusco – Mollepata – Salkantaypampa
We pick you up at your hotel at 5:30 a.m. We arrive in the town of Mollepata and around 8:00 a.m. continue to Soraypampa ( 3950 m.a.s.l.). At approximately 10:30 a.m. we are going to start climbing. On the way up the valley you can catch your breath and prepare for the difficult bit to come. From here you can see the first view of the snow covered peaks: Mt. Umantay (5917 m.a.s.l.) on the left side, and in front of you Mount Salkantay ( 6270 m..a.s.l.), the Sacred Mountain of the Inkas. We continue following the stream going in the north-east direction.
You are now underneath a massive wall of scree at the end of the valley; it is the terminal moraine of a glacier. Around 1:00 p.m. we will have our lunch, then we will continue ascending to Japanese Base camp.

Day 2.- Japanese Base Camp – Inkachiriasqa – Pampaqhawana
After breakfast we follow the path which switches back steeply up to the right. From here it takes 1 hr. and 30 minutes to the pass Inkachiriasqa “Eternal Inka King” ( 5000m.a.s.l.). Here we start to go down. It is a very steep descent. Far away you can see the Inka canal glistening in the sun. This area is called Pampaqhawana. Here you may encounter herders with their alpacas and llamas. This is our second campsite.

Day 3.- Pampaqhawana – Paukarkancha - Q’ente
We cross the bridge near the primary school to the right bank of the river. The valley descends gently here and the flora changes from high puna to scrub; it is warm and you can see many species of butterflies and insects.
Two hours later we arrive at the Inka site of Paukarkancha, small Inkatambo (lodge and storage). Half an hour later we will have our lunch in the main village at the Inka trail, Wayllabamba, and here the muleteers finish and the porters start their work.

In the afternoon we continue descending and about one hour later we visit the second largest Inka site, Patallaqta (the town with the terraces) after Machupicchu. Before arriving at our campsite of Q’ente we will walk through the eucalyptus forest and also we will see agricultural Inka terraces. From our campsite you can see two Inka sites: Machu Q’ente is the closer one, there is a large building which possibly was a resting place, it was agriculturally self sufficient (corn, quinua, potatoes). The other site, Wayna Q’ente, was the most important one. It was built in a different style and a Sacred Cavern was waka (shrine place), built with fine stonework.

Day 4.- Q’ente – Chachabamba ( Km.104 )
It is a 15 km (9 miles) walk alongside Urubamba river and adjacent railway track, where trains bound to Machupicchu pass.
At this altitude there is a marked change in the flora and fauna. Our trek will take aproximatly 7 hours, this is the longest day. Most of the terrain is flat but sometimes it also goes uphill and downhill; most of the time we are walking through the cloud forest with its sub-tropical foliage. After our tea time we will visit the Inka ruins of Chachabamba, which were restored only a few years ago.

Day 5.- Chachabamba - Wiñaywayna - Machupicchu
We are going to walk uphill for almost three hours and later we visit the amazing Inka site of Wiñaywayna, “forever young”. It’s the last before Inka Site on the trail before Machupicchu.
The last couple of hours are mostly flat. Staircases bring us to the Inti Punku, “Sungate“, with the Inka city of Machupicchu spread out before us. We head down to the lost city and there we have time for panoramic pictures. Afterwards we will take our bus to the hot springs town of Aguas Calientes where we go straight to the hotel for the hot shower.

Day 6 – Machupicchu.
We will take the first bus at 6:00 a.m. We begin with archeological city tour around 6:30 and continue for about two hours. Later you can enjoy the site by yourself. At the midday we come back to the Hot Spring’s town for lunch and shopping. We return by 4:00 p.m. train.

Private bus.
Tickets to Machupicchu.
Meals ( 5b,5l,5d ).
Mule drivers ( horses, mules).
Camping equipment.
First aid kid.

Sleeping bag.
Breakfast ( day 1, lunch day 6 and dinner day 6 ).

Travel and Tourism Agency LUCERO´S TOUR S.R.L.
A.P.V Campiña Alta C-6
San Sebastián
Cusco - Perú
Phonefax.- +51 84 270060