Peru – Machu Picchu and the Salkantay Trek in Style

12 Days





12 Years

£ 4695

Machu Picchu and the Salkantay Trek in Style

Challenge yourself and follow the road less travelled to Machu Picchu. The Salkantay Adventure goes beyond deluxe lodges and a great trek. It is also a unique opportunity to immerse yourself in Andean culture as you learn about the Inca civilization and the extraordinary legacy that they left for generations to come.

Price £4,695 / $5,895

Excludes international and domestic flights.


Tailormade Departures


Day by Day

Arrive in Lima and take the morning flight to Cusco.

Upon arrival in Cusco we will be met and will transfer to our hotel in the heart of Cusco. Afternoon at leisure to explore the town. This evening we will enjoy a private rooftop cooking class. Peruvian cuisine is known the world over for its unique flavours, both savoury and sweet. After an excursion to the celebrated San Pedro Market, put on your chef’s apron and join us for a cooking class on how to create a delicious three-course meal using some of Peru’s traditional recipes.

This morning head out on a ½ day E-Bike Tour


This lovely half day bike riding trip is a superb introduction to the Inca heritage of Peru, as well as being suitably flexible to suit just about everyone, from the beginner to the experienced rider. Riding at just over 3000m this is also a great acclimatization trip to prepare you for your onward travels at altitude.


Imported from Germany, the state of the art, Haibike, full-suspension, electricassist, mountain bikes are the perfect way to explore Cusco in a carbon friendly way. If you've never tried an E-bike, it's like having your best friend running alongside you, giving you that little extra push whenever you need it. You still have to peddle but it takes all the hard work out of doing so. They are truly brilliant!


Leaving Cusco in the morning, we will have a briefing before we start our cycle up to our first stunning ruin, the extensive Sacsayhuaman. Although the smaller stones of Sacsayhuaman were used to build modern day Cusco, the remaining stones are up to 8.5m high and weigh over 360 tons. The distinctive zig-zag ramparts are attributed to being puma teeth, lightning and also fortification. This major centre obviously had many functions with storehouses, administration buildings, a reservoir and a play area. It was also site of a crucial battle between the Incas and the Spanish.


We then continue on our bikes uphill to visit Puca Pucara, a delightful ruin on a small prominence now believed to be a ‘tambo’, a rest house for travelling animals, goods and travellers, rather than the ‘red fort’ its name suggests. Finally we visit Tambomachay, this is popularly called the Inca’s Bath due to its finely preserved waterfalls, carefully diverted through fine stone channels.


The Incas acknowledged water as one of the principal elements of life and revered it accordingly.


Here we start our mountain bike return journey. Your expert guide and mechanic will assess your group’s ability and then offer a variety of riding options, from easy, smooth road, dirt road or harder single tracks. All trails are largely downhill as we wind our way back towards Cusco city, enjoying spectacular views of the valley and city itself. Your support vehicle is on hand or nearby for virtually the whole trip, and can be used to carry any non-riders or weary clients and extra gear.


This afternoon is at leisure.

Today we have a full day to explore the Sacred Valley.


The sacred Valley is very important since it will give us an incredible background of the expansion of the Inca Culture, from Cusco, to the Valley and to Machu Picchu. We will get to visit Pisaq, Ollantaytambo and Chinchero. This is a private tour, private transportation, guides and entrances will be included, as well as an incredible lunch in Urubamba town, one of the best restaurants in the Valley.


This evening we will meet our MLP guide for a general trip briefing and Q&A.

After an early breakfast, our MLP guide and driver will pick us up at your hotel in Cusco. The first stop is a visit to the Quillarumiyoc archaeological site en route to the mountain village of Mollepata. Enjoy lunch at El Pedregal, a beautiful farmhouse in the village, where you will also have the opportunity to learn about local agriculture and livestock. After lunch comes a scenic ride on the winding mountain road to Challacancha. Here we will begin your hike to our flagship Salkantay Lodge at Soraypampa along a picturesque path called the “Camino Real” (Royal Path).


Note: Although we highly recommend participating in the hike as part of your continued altitude acclimatization, guests may opt out and continue by transport to Salkantay Lodge.

After breakfast, we begin an ascent up the slopes that border the plateau behind Salkantay Lodge*. An hour and a half later, your hard work will be rewarded with a first glimpse of the lake’s glistening turquoise waters and the Humantay glacier looming overhead. Upon arrival, we will have a chance to relax, enjoy a snack, meditate in the tranquility of this magical spot, and participate in a traditional ceremony to honor “la Pachamama” (Mother Earth). After your descent back to the lodge, the Salkantay staff will be waiting with a hot lunch. Afternoon at leisure to relax, enjoy a massage, or soak in the outdoor hot tub for a spectacular view of the Salkantay Peak at sunset.


*Note: While the morning hike to Lake Humantay is optional, we strongly recommend your participation in preparation for the strenuous hike on Day 3.


  • Trekking Time: Approximately 4 hours
  • Hiking Level: Moderate
  • Optional Activities:


Chakana excursion (subject to additional cost): Horseback/hiking combo up the steep hills adjacent the lodge. The destination—a dramatic lookout point over the Salkantay River Valley marked by an oversized Inca Chakana (cross). This excursion will replace the hike to the glacier lake. Duration: Approximately 5 hours (1.5 - 2 hours on horseback)

Horseback riding (subject to additional cost): After lunch, spend a leisurely afternoon exploring Soraypampa on horseback. Duration: Approximately 2 hours.

After an early start, the ascent toward the Salkantay Pass begins. We will circle Humantay Peak, gradually making our way along expansive plateaus connected by enormous boulders, remnants of the Rio Blanco Valley that was once bisected by a fast-flowing river. The last and most challenging part of the ascent is conquering the mountain switchbacks that lead you to the pass, the highest point on the trek (15,213’ / 4,636m). The journey continues with a dramatic descent through fields of large boulders and natural stone formations often shrouded in fog. We will have some time to rest and enjoy some trail mix before the final hike through the area’s bucolic countryside; its rolling hills will eventually lead you through marsh-like plateaus to the Wayra Lodge at Wayraccmachay, where we can wash away the trail dirt and have a great hot and tasty lunch. In the afternoon relax in the Jacuzzi or enjoy the great and impressive views of surroundings high snowed peaks.

After a leisurely breakfast at Wayra Lodge, we will continue the descent toward the cloud forest along the banks of the Salkantay River through increasingly verdant scenery. The warm air will begin to rise from the edge of the jungle, accompanied by colorful butterflies and striking orchids. Today we will see more local Andean people as the trail takes you past their simple homes and makeshift fences. At approximately midday, we will arrive at Colpa Lodge, located on a high promontory at the confluence of three rivers.


The Colpa staff will greet us with a Pachamanca lunch, a traditional Peruvian meal cooked below ground with hot stones that create a natural oven. After lunch, spend the afternoon lounging in the sun or relaxing in the outdoor hot tub while you take in the panoramic views of the lush green mountains that surround you.

Today we will hike through the Santa Teresa River Valley along a rolling trail that crosses fertile fruit orchards and bisects streams originating from glacier-fed waterfalls. Rest alongside the river for a trail mix, then continue hiking for one more hour before you are met by an MLP transport vehicle for the short drive to the bottom of the Llactapata Inca Trail steps that lead to Lucma Lodge. Enjoy a great lunch at the lodge and afterwards, visit an organic coffee plantation, one of many in the area that produce some of the best organic coffees in the world. We will also begin to notice another shift in the climate; in Lucmabamba, the hot air and increased humidity signal that you are even closer to the edge of the Amazon Jungle.

After breakfast, depart from Lucma Lodge and embark on a 2-3 hour climb through the cloud forest up a path mostly comprised of original Inca steps. A lush tree line creates green canopies overhead and the constant sound of rushing water suggests that the river is nearby. Our first milestone today will be the top of the peak, the last one before you descend to the Aobamba River Valley that connects you to Machu Picchu. Upon arrival at the Llactapata Pass (8,974’ / 2,736m), we will delight in a southeast view of Machu Picchu, a sight few travelers get the chance to admire. After exploring Llactapata, the Inca tambo (fort) that marks the pass, enjoy a picnic lunch at a mountain lookout point with panoramic views. The final descent along a trail that zigzags down to the roaring Aobamba River will take us through lush bamboo forests, varied fruit orchards, and more coffee plantations. Celebrate as we cross the bridge over the river and take our final steps of the trek en route to the Hidroelectrica train station for a scenic one-hour train ride to the town of Aguas Calientes, on the banks of the Urubamba River at the base of Machu Picchu.

Your journey to Machu Picchu begins with a morning rollicking uphill bus ride. As you enter the ‘sanctuary’ (as locals refer to it), prepare to be awed by the imposing, skillful architecture of the Watchtower, the Temple of the Sun, and the royal Inca residences, among others. After a two-hour guided tour, you will have free time to explore on your own, including a hike up Huayna Picchu Mountain* for dramatic views that stretch from the Urubamba River Valley to the edge of the Amazon Jungle. At some point, be sure to take a moment and sit quietly–listen to the wind, meditate, and absorb the mystical energy that envelops you. After the visit you will have lunch in Aguas Calientes before a scenic Vistadome train ride to Ollantaytambo (approximately 1.5 hours) and vehicle transfer to your hotel in Cusco (approximately 1.5 hours). As night falls and you arrive amidst the hustle and bustle of the city, you will be touched by a feeling of peace and rejuvenation that will linger long after your journey home.


Note: Tickets for Huayna Picchu Mt. (8,924’ / 2,720m) may be available subject to additional cost. In the event that Huayna Picchu permits are not available for your desired date, you may opt to hike up Machu Picchu Mt. (10,112 / 3,082m), located next to the Machu Picchu Citadel on the southern side. We can decide on this once we have the main trip finalized

Today we transfer to the airport in time for our flight back to Lima. Here we will be met and transferred to our hotel in Lima.


This evening we will have an incredible evening culinary tour in Lima, a great option to try the local food, and appetizers and visit Miraflores and Barranco, the tourist neighbourhoods of Lima.

Transfer to the airport in time for flight home.


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