Trips 2014

Mt. Salcantay and Inca Trail Trek to Machu Picchu – Itinerary

Trip Dates
For the year 2014 we have decided not to advertise departure dates, but instead to work with groups of 4 passengers or more. If you would like to develop your own group, with your own departure dates please contact us and we will be happy to organize your trip and provide all of the first class services you desire.

Land Cost:
7-9 Trekkers: $3495/person
4-6 Trekkers: $3895/person

Single supplement:
• $150.00 for a private room or tent

16-Day trip beginning and ending in the USA
7 Nights lodging, 7 Nights full service camping
All meals included except 2 lunches and 2 dinners

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Slide Show
Trip Testimonials
General Trip Information
Inca Trail Permit Regulations

Day-by-day Itinerary

Day 1
Fly from U.S.A. to Lima. Stay overnight in Lima.

Day 2
Continental breakfast is provided before your early morning flight to Cuzco. Arriving in Cuzco a short drive takes us to a nice three star hotel, in the heart of Cuzco, here we are welcomed with a drink of coca tea. Drinking coca tea is a local custom to aid in your acclimatization. After checking into your rooms you will be on your own to eat lunch in one of the many diverse restaurants found around the main plaza. Following lunch, the afternoon will be spent on a tour of the historical Inca Ruins, "Temple of the Sun", and other ancient parts of the city. Later we will go out for a welcome dinner. You will stay overnight in Cusco. Breakfast and dinner are provided.

Day 3
Chinchero Market: An early departure from the hotel, we drive to the village of Chinchero and visit the colorful Sunday market. The morning is spent walking through the market, an excellent place for photographing the local colors and customs. We will be given a private weaving demonstration by some of the local Indian women and have the opportunity to purchase weavings and other handicrafts from them. In the afternoon we drive back to Cuzco and enjoy strolling the streets of this ancient city. You will stay overnight in Cuzco. Continental breakfast and lunch provided, dinner not included.
Click for larger viewChinchero Market
Chinchero Market
© Brad Johnson
Day 4
Cuzco: Today we spend more than half of the day exploring five different ruins in the hills above the city of Cuzco. We drive 3 miles out of town and then walk back to Cuzco, visiting and exploring each of these ruins along the way. This walk provides an opportunity to witness the daily agricultural life of the highland people working their fields and tending to their Llamas and Alpacas. A picnic lunch will be served in a grassy meadow near one of the ruins. This will be a very enjoyable day and one that will help us get better acclimatized for our Andean trek. You will stay overnight in Cusco. Breakfast and lunch provided, dinner not included.

Click for larger viewSoray Pampa
Soray Pampa
© Brad Johnson
Day 5 [5 hour / 6 mile trek]
Trek to Marcokasa: The trek begins today! Getting an early morning start we drive to the village of Mollepata (9,200ft.). Here we meet our camp staff and trek a few miles before lunch. In the afternoon we will hike past farms and streams, gradually gaining altitude toward the mountains to our first camp, Marcokasa (11,400ft.). All meals are provided for the entire trek to Machu Picchu.

Day 6 [5 hour / 6 mile trek]
Marcokasa to Soray Pampa: Today is a moderately easy day of walking with stretches of ups and downs through a beautiful valley. By mid-afternoon we reach our next camp at Soray Pampa (12,350ft.). This camp is located in a spectacular spot, surrounded by snow-covered mountains. Mt. Salcantay (20,575ft.) towers above camp at the head of the valley. It is considered by climbers to be one of the most technical mountains in the Andes to summit.

Day 7 [6-7 hour / 10 mile trek]
Soray Pampa to Acobamba: Today is a long and tiring day as we gain 3,000 vertical feet from camp to the top of Incachiriasqa Pass (16,011ft). We will walk about half of the distance to the pass and then stop for a picnic lunch in a grassy meadow beneath Mt. Salcantay. After lunch we must pace ourselves the final two hours to the top of the pass. The views of Mt. Salcantay dominating overhead will be nothing short of incredible! From the top of the pass it is a long descent to our next camp in the grassy meadow of Acobamba (13,800ft.).
Click for larger viewIncachiriasqa Pass
Incachiriasqa Pass
© Brad Johnson

Click for larger viewRest Day
Rest Day
© Brad Johnson
Day 8
Acobamba - Rest day:
This is a perfect spot for a rest day. If you have the energy you can go for a hike above camp to get closer views of the south face of Mt. Salcantay and watch the skies for condors.

Day 9 [6 hour / 11 mile trek]
It is all downhill today through a beautiful grassy valley and many small villages. Near the end of the day we come to the Inca ruins of Paucarcancha. This is an impressive Inca fortress with commanding views of the valley. We pitch camp near the ruins. It is here we replace our horses with a group of local porters to carry our food and equipment to Machu Picchu.
Click for larger viewLeaving Mt. Salcantay
Leaving Mt. Salcantay
© Brad Johnson
Day 10 [4-5 hour / 5 mile trek]
Paucarcancha to Llulluchapampa: Leaving camp we walk 30 minutes down to the village of Wallabamba. This is the entrance to the famous "Inca Trail" to Machu Picchu. The trail rises steeply for 2,000 feet towards the top of our second pass, however we stop one hour below the pass and make camp in a grassy meadow in Llulluchapampa (12,500ft.). The views of many high peaks are fantastic from here.

Click for larger viewHiking the Inca Trail to "Warmiwanusca" pass
Hiking the Inca Trail to
"Warmiwanusca" pass
© Brad Johnson
Day 11 [7 hour / 10 mile trek]
Llulluchapampa to Phuyupatamarca: From camp we have an hour walk and 1000 feet to gain before crossing our 2nd high pass. Then we descend into a hidden valley and climb up again to have lunch at the spectacular ruins of Runcuracay. An easy 45 minutes more brings us to the top of the 3rd pass and then a long descent down the other side to the ruins of Sayaqmarca. These are breathtaking ruins with commanding views of the Inca Trail and the surrounding mountains. The trail now is very distinctly paved with stones. As we lose elevation the environment becomes more jungle like, covered with orchids, ferns and rainbow-colored mosses. We make camp near the ruins of Phuyupatamarca (11,800ft.). In my opinion, this camp is the most beautiful along the Inca Trail.

Day 12 [5 hour / 8 mile trek]
Phuyupatamarca to Machu Picchu: We begin an incredible descent from our camp down thousands of stone steps toward the ruins of Winay Wayna. This almost perfectly restored ruin is a jewel in the jungle. After Winay Wayna, the trail contours along the steep hillsides above the Urubamba River Gorge to the citadel's entranceway, Intipunku (The Sun Gate) were we get extraordinary views of both Machu Picchu and Huayna Picchu. The rest of the afternoon is set aside for exploration of this magical place. We stay overnight in a nice three star hotel in the town of Agaus Caliente. Breakfast, lunch and dinner provided.
Click for larger viewRunkurucay Ruin
Runkurucay Ruin
© Brad Johnson

Click for larger viewMachu Picchu
Machu Picchu
© Brad Johnson
Day 13
Machu Picchu to Ollantaytambo: Waking up early, we will take one of the first buses back up to the ruins to enter Machu Picchu and have them all to ourselves before the tourists arrive from Cuzco. After watching the sunrise on Machu Picchu, we spend the rest of the morning on a guided tour of this ancient city. In the early afternoon we return to Aguas Caliente and board the train for a two-hour ride to the village of Ollantaytambo. Here we will stay overnight in a beautiful countryside hacienda. All meals provided.

Day 14
Sacred Valley of the Incas: After breakfast we drive to the fortress and village of Ollantaytambo. This is the only Inca village still being lived in today. After lunch at a beautiful outdoor restaurant, we drive through the Sacred Valley of the Incas to the Inca ruins of Pisac. Here we hike along paths that link several citadel structures to the Temple of the Sun, overlooking the surrounding terraces and the valley below. Pisac has some of the finest examples of Inca terraces in the whole region. We return to Cuzco for our last evening in Peru and a farewell dinner. We stay overnight in a nice three star hotel. All meals provided.

Click for larger viewInca Stone Work
Inca Stone Work
© Brad Johnson
Back to trip pageDay 15 & 16
Fly from Cuzco to Lima: We will have a farewell dinner in Lima and depart at night for an overnight flight to the U.S.A. Breakfast and Dinner provided. Lunch on your own.

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