Salkantay and Short Inca Trail: A 5-Day Trekking Fusion

Experience a unique combination of the Salkantay Trek and the Short Inca Trail, culminating in a visit to Machu Picchu.

Home » 5-Day Salkantay Trek & Short Inca Trail Combo

Cusco, Peru


5 Days




Year Round

Tour type



Gain a profound connection with the ancient Inca civilization and the majestic beauty of the Peruvian Andes through our 5-Day Salkantay Trek & Short Inca Trail Combo. This journey offers an unparalleled opportunity to immerse yourself in a world of breathtaking landscapes, rich history, and vibrant culture. Traverse through varied terrains, from the snowy peaks near Salkantay Mountain to the lush greenery of the Inca Trail, each step bringing you closer to the awe-inspiring Machu Picchu. Along the way, experience the serene beauty of Humantay Lake, witness the grandeur of Incachiriaska Pass, and explore the timeless ruins of Machu Picchu.

This trek is not just a physical journey, but a voyage through time, as you follow paths carved by an ancient civilization. Encounter fascinating archaeological sites like the Moray Inca Site and Maras Salt Mines, and engage with the local culture in quaint Andean communities. Your expert guides will bring the history of the Incas to life, enhancing your experience with their knowledge and insights. From camping under the stars to the comfort of cozy hotels, this tour combines adventure with relaxation, culminating in a comprehensive exploration of Machu Picchu. It’s an adventure designed for those who seek to embrace the spirit of the Incas and discover the hidden wonders of their legendary trails.

Departure & Return Location Your Hotel in Cusco
Departure Time 4:00 AM - 4:30 AM
Estimated Return Time 5:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Guide Languages Available Guides fluent in English and Spanish
Key Attractions Humantay Lake, Ichupata, Incachiriaska Pass, Paucarcancha, Classic Inca Trail, Ollantaytambo, Chachabamba, Wiñaywayna, Sun Gate, Machu Picchu, Machu Picchu Mountain
FromUSD 1,050
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Select a package
  • Standard Large GroupGroup Size: 2 Min – 16ppl MaxStart Time: 04:00
  • Standard Small GroupGroup Size: 2 Min – 8ppl MaxStart Time: 04:00
  • Private GroupGroup Size: CustomizableStart Time: 04:00
  • Deluxe Private GroupGroup Size: CustomizableStart Time: 04:00
  • Solo TravelerGroup Size: 1 personStart Time: 04:00
  • Deluxe Solo TravelerGroup Size: 1 personStart Time: 04:00

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Tour Itinerary

Explore our expertly designed itinerary below, crafted to showcase breathtaking views and provide unique adventures every step of the way.

Your adventure begins in the early hours of the morning as our dedicated team picks you up from your accommodation in Cusco at 4:00 a.m. The journey to Mollepata, a two-hour scenic drive, is the perfect preamble to your trek. Here, you have the opportunity to enjoy a quick breakfast and gather your energy for the day ahead.

The first leg of our trek starts at Soraypampa, surrounded by the stunning vistas of Salkantay and Humantay mountains. The trek towards the Humantay Lake is a 1.5-hour uphill journey, revealing the lake's breathtaking turquoise waters, an ideal backdrop for memorable photos.

Post this visual feast, we return to Soraypampa for a freshly prepared lunch. The adventure doesn't stop here! A 4-hour hike leads us to our first campsite at Ichupata. Here, under the starlit sky, your expert trek leader will guide you through an unforgettable stargazing session, followed by a delicious dinner.

Accommodation: Camping
Meals: Lunch, Tea, and Dinner
Hiking: Approx. 7-8 hours, 12 km

Awaken to the soothing aroma of hot coca tea, signaling the start of another day of adventure. Following a nourishing breakfast, we embark on the day’s challenge: reaching the "Frozen Inca Pass" or Incachiriaska Pass. As we ascend, the path offers captivating views of glaciers and the imposing Salkantay Mountain, with a chance to spot local eagles, hawks, and condors.

Reaching the summit is a triumph, rewarding you with panoramic views that justify the challenging ascent. After savoring the tranquility at the peak, we begin our descent, with a delicious lunch served two hours downhill in a picturesque location.

The afternoon hike, lasting about two hours, brings us to our next campsite at Pampacahuana. Unwind and relax during our special "mountain happy hour" with tea and snacks, before indulging in another sumptuous dinner.

Accommodation: Camping
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Tea, and Dinner
Hiking: Approx. 8-9 hours, 15 km

The day begins with the warm comfort of a nourishing breakfast, fueling you for the trek ahead. We start by descending towards the remarkable Inca site of Paucarcancha. Rich in historical architecture, this site offers a fascinating glimpse into Inca terraces and dwellings, perfect for exploration and photography enthusiasts.

Our journey then merges with the Classic Inca Trail, leading us through a path lined with more historical ruins. Each step on this trail is a step back in time, as you walk the same paths once traversed by the Incas.

After a full day of hiking and immersing in the rich Incan history, we arrive at Km 82 for a well-deserved lunch. From here, we transfer to the picturesque town of Ollantaytambo. Settle into a cozy hotel, relishing a local dinner and reflecting on the day's incredible experiences.

Accommodation: Hotel
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner
Hiking: Approx. 7-8 hours, 16 km

As the first light of dawn breaks, we head towards the train station for a 6:10 a.m. departure to Km 104, the start of our trek for the day. Upon arrival, we pass through the checkpoint and are immediately greeted by the ancient Incan site of Chachabamba. Here, you'll delve into the history of intricate temples and sacred spaces.

The day's hike transitions into a scenic uphill walk, culminating at the Wiñaywayna Inca Temple. Known as "forever young" in Quechua, this site blends historical intrigue with visual splendor. After a brief exploration and a snack, we continue towards Machu Picchu. The highlight of this trek is passing through the Sun Gate, offering the first enchanting view of the mysterious ancient city.

In the afternoon, as the light softens, you'll have the opportunity to capture stunning photographs of Machu Picchu with fewer crowds. The day ends with a bus ride down to Aguas Calientes, where you can relax in your hotel, eagerly anticipating the full exploration of Machu Picchu tomorrow.

Accommodation: Hotel
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner
Hiking: Approx. 6-7 hours, 12 km

Your incredible journey culminates with an early breakfast in Aguas Calientes, followed by the first bus ride up to Machu Picchu. This early visit allows you to experience the citadel in a tranquil, less crowded atmosphere, offering a unique opportunity to connect with the history and mystique of this ancient wonder.

During the comprehensive guided tour, your guide will share insights into the historical significance, architectural brilliance, and enduring mysteries of Machu Picchu. For those who have opted and acquired permits, the challenging climb up Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain is available, providing stunning panoramic views.

After the tour, return to Aguas Calientes for some free time. Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant and maybe pick up some souvenirs to commemorate your adventure. In the afternoon, board the train back to Ollantaytambo or Poroy, depending on availability. The final leg of your journey is a private van transfer back to Cusco, where you arrive filled with memories of an unforgettable experience exploring the heart of the Inca empire.

Accommodation: None (Tour ends)
Meals: Breakfast
Hiking: Leisurely walking, approx. 2-3 hours

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Tour Highlights

  • Salkantay Mountain and Humantay Lake: Begin the trek with the stunning views of Salkantay Mountain and the serene beauty of Humantay Lake, known for its vivid turquoise waters.

  • Incachiriaska Pass: Experience the exhilaration of reaching the Incachiriaska Pass, also known as the “Frozen Inca Pass,” offering panoramic views of the Andean landscapes and potential sightings of local wildlife.

  • Classic Inca Trail: Trek a portion of the Classic Inca Trail, stepping on paths once walked by the Incas, and explore historical Inca sites rich in ancient architecture and cultural significance.

  • Cultural Immersion in Ollantaytambo: Spend a night in the charming town of Ollantaytambo, immersing yourself in local culture and history with a stay in a cozy hotel.

  • Short Inca Trail to Machu Picchu: Hike the Short Inca Trail, including a visit to the Wiñaywayna Inca Temple and entry to Machu Picchu through the Sun Gate, offering a unique perspective of the ancient city.

  • Comprehensive Tour of Machu Picchu: Enjoy an in-depth guided tour of Machu Picchu, uncovering the mysteries and marvels of this iconic Incan citadel.

  • Options for Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain: For the adventurous, climb Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain (subject to permit availability) for spectacular views of the surrounding valleys and Machu Picchu.

  • Scenic Train Rides: Experience scenic train rides through the beautiful Peruvian countryside, adding comfort and picturesque views to your journey.


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Payment Terms

Payment Terms & Cancellation Policy

Kindly take a moment to read our Payment Terms & Cancellation Policy before booking. Happy adventuring!

Payment Terms

Beginning Your Adventure - Booking Confirmation and Deposit

Your journey starts with a commitment: a 30% deposit of the total tour cost. This initial investment is pivotal in activating the extensive preparatory process, ensuring every aspect of your tour is curated to perfection.

Final Payment: The Last Step Before Your Journey Begins

The remaining 70% of the tour cost is due no later than 48 hours before the commencement of your tour. This timely payment is critical to finalize all logistical arrangements, guaranteeing a hassle-free start to your adventure.

Expansive Payment Options for Ease and Flexibility

In line with our commitment to your convenience, Peru Tripper accepts a variety of payment methods, including bank transfers, credit cards, and PayPal. Please be aware that additional fees may apply depending on the payment method selected. Detailed payment procedures and potential fees can be found on our dedicated payment page.

Implications of Late Payments - Protecting Your Reservation

Adherence to the payment schedule is crucial. Late payments can unfortunately lead to the cancellation of your reservation, with the deposit being retained as a non-refundable fee. We urge you to maintain timely payments to safeguard your tour plans.

Policy for Last-Minute Adventurers

For those inspired to join this tour on short notice, namely less than 15 days before departure, full payment is required at the time of booking. This ensures that we can expedite all necessary preparations for your inclusion.

Cancellation Policy

Cancellation Terms for Clients

We recognize that life is ever-changing. However, due to the elaborate planning and expenses involved in preparing for this tour, we maintain a strict no-refund policy after booking confirmation. This underscores the importance of obtaining comprehensive travel insurance, which can offer protection against unforeseen cancellations.

Navigating Unpredictable Circumstances - Force Majeure

In extraordinary situations beyond our control, such as natural disasters or political upheavals, Peru Tripper will strive to offer alternative arrangements. This may include rescheduling your trip or issuing a credit for future travel, based on current availability and discretion.

Emphasizing the Need for Comprehensive Travel Insurance

To cover unexpected events, including trip disruptions and medical emergencies, we cannot stress enough the importance of securing comprehensive travel insurance. It’s your safety net, ensuring peace of mind throughout your journey. Please note, Peru Tripper does not bear responsibility for costs arising from incidents not covered by your travel insurance.

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Special Discounts


  • Adult (12+ Years): Standard rates apply for travelers over 12 years old.
  • Student (-25 Years with Student Card): Save USD 20 with a valid Student Card for those younger than 25 years old.
  • Child (3 – 11 Years): Save USD 30 for children between 3 and 11 years old.
  • Infant (0 – 2 Years): Infants younger than 2 years old are free (must ride on the adult’s lap; for a separate seat, add them as a child).
  • Group Discount: Automatically applied during online booking.
    • Save USD 10/person for groups of 5-7 people.
    • Save USD 15/person for groups of 8-10 people.
    • Save USD 20/person for groups of 11+ people.

Please note that the applicable age is considered at the time of completion of the trip.

View age and group-based discount details.

Inclusions & Exclusions

Dive into our in-depth guide on what’s included and not included for all package options on the 5-Day Salkantay Trek & Short Inca Trail Combo. With these carefully put-together lists, you’ll know exactly what to anticipate when booking the journey of a lifetime.

Standard Inclusions

Our Standard package offers a range of amenities and services for a comfortable and enjoyable trip experience. All package options include the following:

Not Included

The following items are not included in our trek packages. Please consider these additional costs when preparing for your trek. Note that some exclusions may be included in the Deluxe package, as mentioned in the Additional Inclusions section:

Additional Inclusions (Deluxe Package)

Upgrade to our Deluxe package for an enhanced and luxurious trekking experience. The Deluxe package includes these premium amenities and services, which can also be added individually to the Standard package:

What to Pack

When embarking on the 5-Day Salkantay Trek & Short Inca Trail Combo, it’s crucial to pack the right items for a successful and enjoyable experience.

Packing List

Provided Duffle Bag and Packing Tips

We’ll supply the duffle bag during the pre-trek briefing with your guide, held 1-2 nights prior to the tour’s start. This allows you to familiarize yourself with the bag and pack efficiently.

The briefing covers essential trek details, such as itinerary, safety guidelines, and last-minute updates. It’s an excellent chance to ask questions, meet fellow trekkers, and prepare for your adventure.

Packing Tips:
  • Adhere to the 7 kg weight limit: Keep the weight of your personal items in the duffle bag within the 7 kg limit to maintain a manageable load for the horses.
  • Place non-essential items in the duffle bag: Store items you won’t need during the day, like extra clothes, toiletries, and sleeping bags, in the duffle bag to lighten your day pack.
  • Label your duffle bag: Add a luggage tag or other identification to your duffle bag to prevent mix-ups with other trekkers’ bags.
  • Keep valuables in your day pack: Store passports, cameras, cash, and other valuable items in your day pack for added security and easy access.

By following these packing guidelines, you’ll be well-prepared to make the most of your trekking adventure. We look forward to guiding you on this exciting journey!

Frequently Asked Questions

Got questions? We’ve got answers! Dive into our FAQ section for detailed responses to common queries. If you don’t find what you’re looking for, our team is just a click away to assist you.

Are there any safety measures in place during the trek?

Your safety is our top priority during the trek. Our guides are experienced and have received first aid and safety training. In addition, they carry a first aid kit and a satellite phone for emergency communication. We also follow strict guidelines to ensure environmental sustainability and protect the natural beauty of the trail.

Can I store my luggage at the Peru Tripper office while I’m on the trek?

Yes, Peru Tripper offers a secure luggage storage service at our office in Cusco. You can leave any belongings you don’t need during the trek, such as suitcases or extra clothing, with us.

How large are the trekking groups?

Group sizes can vary. We aim to maintain small to medium sized groups to ensure a personalized and enjoyable experience for all guests.

Do I need any vaccinations before the trek?

While no specific vaccinations are required for the trek, we recommend being up-to-date on routine vaccines. Travelers should consider speaking with their doctor about their travel plans and any recommended vaccinations.

Do I need to carry a first aid kit?

While it’s always a good idea to carry basic first aid supplies, our guides will have a comprehensive first aid kit for emergencies.

What type of guide will be leading the trek?

Our treks are led by experienced, English-speaking guides who are knowledgeable about the region’s history, culture, and flora/fauna. Our guides are certified and trained in wilderness first aid and altitude-related health issues to ensure the safety and well-being of all participants.

Will there be a briefing before the trek begins?

Yes, there will be a pre-trek briefing the day before the trek starts. During the briefing, our experienced guides will provide detailed information about the trek, answer any questions, and ensure that all participants are adequately prepared for the adventure.

What type of weather can we expect?

The weather can vary, but typically the dry season from May to October offers sunny days and cold nights. The rainy season runs from November to April.

Can I rent trekking gear from you?

Yes, we offer rental of trekking gear such as walking poles and sleeping bags. Please contact us directly for more information on our rental options and prices.

Where does the tour start and end?

The tour starts and ends in Cusco. We provide pickups and drop-offs at your hotel in Cusco.

How difficult is the trek?

The trek is of moderate difficulty. While no prior trekking experience is required, a good level of fitness will help in navigating the terrains and altitude.

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  • What to Pack
  • Frequently Asked Questions

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