Salkantay via Tomacaya & Inca Trail Trek 8 days/7 nights
This challenging trek takes you on a journey through the different ecosystems of this beautiful area, including pampa, cloud forest, wooded valleys, riverside and mountain passes. You will explore ancient Inca ruins on the way, where our excellent guid, Flavio, will share his knowledge of this magnificent civilisation to bring your visits alive. You will brave high mountain passes before joining up with the original Inca Trail to finally arrive at Machu Picchu. With this tour, you can enjoy Machu Picchu over two full days, taking in the beautiful sunrise on your last day, as well as an informative guided tour of the ruins.
This will give you many wonderful photo opportunities, and with the guidance of Flavio, you will be able to make the most of these to create amazing photos. During this trek, you will be able to hone your skills in stunning environments, working particularly on landscape, macro, flora, fauna, sunrise and sunset photography. You will explore places that few get to see, and by camping on the trail you will have many more opportunities to experiment with light painting techniques, as well as night photography. If the season is right, you may even be lucky enough to capture the Milky Way on camera! Flavio's expert advice will enable you to go home with a collection of beautiful photos, and his brilliant guiding will make it an experience you will never forget.
Day 1: Cusco - Tomacaya - Tocobamba
By vehicle and with a guide, the journey starts: over Tika-Tika pass with the first views of Mt. Salkantay and Humantay on the horizon, and then across the plateau of Anta (Antapampa), the "Breadbasket of Cusco", an area important for the production of grains and cattle. The road then crosses Limatambo pass with amazing views of both the mountains and a panorama of the lush agricultural valley below. A visit to the ruins of Tarawasi, with its long asymmetric Inca stone wall, is a must before leaving Limatambo. The drive continues up a side-valley to the farming village of Tomacaya and the trailhead. From Tomacaya there are great views of the Limatambo Valley and down the Apurimac Valley towards Curawasi.
A short hike uphill ends at Tocobamba (3400m/11,152 ft) where camp is set up near a small stream. (Time: 2 hours; Distance: 4km) (B / L / D)
Day 2: Tocobamba - Tinkoc - Collpa
Upon leaving the campsite the trail ascends toward Muyuhorko Pass (3,950 m/12,956 ft). This four-hour hike to the pass ends with a lunch break and tour of a pre-Inca ceremonial site. From here there is an astounding panoramic view of Mt. Salkantay, Humantay, Yanantay and Palcay and beyond Ausangate, Ninaparayoc and Qoylluriti as well as the Pampa de Anta and the Pass of Huilki. Over Muyuhorko pass the trail descends to the Tinkoc River and Collpa (3500m/11,480 ft), where the next camp is located. (Time: 6 hours; Distance: 11 km) (B / L / D)
Day 3: Collpa - Tocto - Sisaypampa.
The hike continues up the Tinkoc Valley to the confluence of another river, (3,800m/12,464 ft) then up the left fork to the Tocto Pass (4,900m/16,072 ft). This long slow ascent uphill finally reaches the pass with breathtaking views of Mt. Salkantay, Yanahorco and Palcay directly opposite and views of the Pampaccahua valley and our Sisaypampa campsite below at 4,200m/13,690 ft. The decent, steep at first, drops to the valley floor for an easier hike down the valley. (Time: 8 hours; Distance: 12 km) (B / L / D)
At the campsite there is a dominating view of the eastern face of the mountains.
Day 4: Sisaypampa - Pampacahua - Paucarcancha
The trail continues to the end of the valley, turns north and enters the wider valley of Pampacahua. Along the Incan canal running through the middle of the valley are small farming settlements. At the end of the Pampa the trail begins to get steeper as it passes the tree line and continues to the campsite near Paucarcancha, and the confluence of the Pampacahua and Keska valleys (3,150m/10,260 ft). (Time: 5-6 hours; Distance: 10 km) (B / L / D)
Day 5: Paucarcancha - Huayllabamba - Llulluchapampa
The day begins at low altitude with a visit to the village of Huayllabamba. From here it is a progressively steep ascent to Huayruro stream (3,400m/11,084 ft) and Yunkachimpa. At Yunkachimpa the trek is joined by a new crew of porters. From here the trail crosses over to Llullucha gorge and traverses unique forest of Unca trees, a native species, which nowadays is hard to find except in isolated areas. As the trail enters the Machu Picchu Sanctuary there are fewer people living in the area, and once out of the forest at Llulluchapampa, there is a view of Mt. Huayanay that overlooks the campsite (3,750m/12,225 ft). (Time: 5-6; Distance: hours, 8 km) (B / L / D)
Day 6: Llulluchampampa - Runkuraqay - Sayacmarca - Phuyupatamarca
A steady ascent on the Inca Trail up toward Warmiwañusca pass (4,200m/13,692 ft) affords a magnificent view of both the ascent and the trail ahead. A reconstructed trail descends to the Pacaymayo River and ascends again to the ruins of Runkuraqay and a second pass (4,050m/ 13,200 ft). From here the trail drops down to Sayacmarca (3,850m/12,551 ft) to join the original Inca Trail, passing a dry lake and the first signs of the cloud forest. The trail in this beautiful location overlooking the Aobamba Valley becomes more leisurely as it winds through imposing scenery and continues along a ridge through amazing landscapes, including views of Mt. Salcantay and Mt. Pumasillo. The rolling flagstoned trail arrives at Phuyupatamarca, "village on the edge of the clouds", where the campsite is nearby. (Time: 7-8 hours; Distance 14km) (B / L / D).
Day 7: Phuyupatamarca - Intipata - Wiñay-Wayna - Machu Picchu
This day begins with a traverse along a ridge with magnificent views of the expansive cloud forest below. This little known trail goes past the newly opened site of Intipata and then ends at Wiñay-Wayna, a great place to stop for lunch. From here another walk along the original Inca Trail arrives at Intipunku, "the Sun Gate" with a spectacular view of Machu Picchu below. (Time: 6-7 hours; Distance 10km) (B / L)
Day 8: Machu Picchu - Cusco
The whole day can be dedicated to exploring these extraordinary Inca remains, including a visit to Huayna Picchu, the mountain overlooking the site.
Allocations and itinerary are subject to change depending on time of booking and campsites provided by INC (institution that runs the Inca Trail). .
* People who want to visit Huayna Picchu must let us know as soon as they can, because according to new rules, there is a limit of people (400) per day that can climb it.
- 1st Turn 07:00 am : 200 people.
- 2nd Turn 10:00 am : 200 people.
Considering an extra night in Aguas Calientes? We can change the date of your train ticket to the following day. Hotel and other costs associated with returning to Machu Picchu the following day are additional to trek costs. Please also note that your entry ticket to Machu Picchu is valid for one day only, if you wish to visit the ruins on a second consecutive day you will need to purchase another ticket.
Aguas Calientes Extra Day Upgrade Package (optional)
With hikes that trek the traditional Inca Trail, the standard package has clients returning to Cusco at the end of the trek, and they don't spend a night in Aguas Calientes. This package provides clients the opportunity to stay in Aguas Calientes for an extra night, visit Machu Picchu for a second day and then return to Cusco by the comfortable Vistadome train.
** Please contact us for a price for the same package but with 2 star accomodation and return in Expedition Train service **
The following extras can be hired directly from us.
Private Service Prices:2017