The Salkantay Trek is the ultimate alternative route to Machu Picchu, but not everyone has the time to dedicate 5 days hiking to the World Wonder. Short on time but still want to enjoy a hike and see the incredible Salkantay mountain? We have the perfect option for you: the 3-day Salkantay Challenge! Our trek will push you to hike 49 km / 30.45 miles over rugged mountain terrain and through lush, thick jungle to Aguas Calientes in just two days.

Although this route is shorter, you’ll still be able to enjoy incredible scenery. You’ll pass by rustic bridges, snow-capped mountains, vibrant valleys, waterfalls, wildlife, unique plants, and the fascinating cloud forest. Your challenge will be complete when you reach the amazing citadel of Machu Picchu, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. What better reward could you ask for!


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Experience all tours in private, unless otherwise indicated.
Local Knowledge
Knowledgeable, professional, and passionate staff and guides.
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24/7 emergency assistance from English-speaking staff.

Tour Price 3 Days Tour 2 Nights

Price From
$ 479 per Person
Group SizeUp to 12
Activity LevelChallenging
Trip StylesHiking
Lodging TypeCamps, Hotel

Trip Itinerary

DAY 1: Day 1: Cusco – Soraypampa – Salkantay Pass – Chaullay.

Early in the morning (4:30am) we’ll pick you up from your hotel, and transport you to Soraypampa (3850 m). We stop briefly for breakfast, be sure to look out your window for spectacular views of Humantay and Salkantay Mountains. After introducing ourselves to the group, we’ll prepare for the trek and start out steadily uphill to the pass (4650m/15,255 ft). You’ll be impressed by Salkantay and the surrounding Andes. Upon arrival at the pass, we’ll be very close to the base of the mountain where we’ll have some stunning views.  Afterwards we’ll follow a rocky serpentine trail down to the village of Huayracmachay and we’ll have lunch. In the afternoon, we descend further into a lush tropical ecosystem, the high Jungle; the temperature increasing as we go.

  • Starting point elevation: 3,500 m
  • Campsite at Challway (2900 m /9,514 ft)
  • Meals: L, D
  • Accommodations: sleeping tents
  • Maximum Altitude: 4650 m
  • Minimum Altitude: 2900 m
  • Walking distance: 22 km to Chaullay

DAY 2: Day 2: Chaullay – La Playa – Santa Teresa – Hydroelectric – Aguas Calientes

At 6:00 am. we will start our trek to La Playa through the Santa Teresa valley. We’ll hike approximately 6 hours passing waterfalls and wild orchids, we’ll also see coffee, banana and avocado plantations. We’ll take a moment to taste Peru’s delicious passion and granadilla fruits before moving on to a village called Colpapampa, also called the “forest cloudy brow,” where waterfalls, hot springs, fruit-bearing trees, varied birds and plant life can be observed. If we’re lucky, we’ll see the famous cock of the Rock, Peru’s national bird. Today’s lunch will be at La Playa then afterwards we catch our ride to the Hydroelectric train station.

Here you will have two options:

1) If you’re tired, you can opt for the train to Aguas Calientes.

2) If you are still eager to trek you may walk from the hydroelectric plant to Aguas Calientes for about 3 hours along the train track. Once in Aguas Calientes we will check in to our rooms to get some rest or explore the town at your leisure; then at 7:00 pm we’ll meet for dinner at a local restaurant.

  • Walking Distance: 26 km/16.1 Mi
  • Starting Elevation: 2750 m/9022 ft
  • Campsite Elevation: 1600 m/5249 ft
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • Accommodation: Hostal
  • Adventure: Absolutely

DAY 3: Day 3: The Big Day – Machu Picchu!

After an early breakfast, we will board the bus which will take us to the most mysterious city of the Incas, Machu Picchu. As part of our itinerary the same professional guide from the Salkantay trek 3 Days / 2 Nights will teach you about all the history of this mysterious and inspirational place. We will visit the Sun Temple, Royal Palace, Main Temple, the Temple of the Three Windows and the Intihuatana sun dial. You’ll have an unforgettable experience. After the guided tour, we’ve left some free time for you to explore on your own.

If you have booked the Wayna Picchu hike, you’ll need to coordinate with our guide regarding your scheduled time to take this additional hike. For people not hiking Wayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain, there are other optional activities you can do on your own:

  • Hike to the Sun Gate: You will have an opportunity to walk (approx. 2 hours up and down) up to the Sun Gate (Inti Punku) to see Machu Picchu from a different angle.
  • Trek to the Inca Bridge: The Inca Bridge offers a dose of adrenaline and while not a strenuous trek it is death defying as the trail is very narrow with steep drops and not for people with vertigo.

Return to Cusco; in the afternoon, you will return to the train station in Aguas Calientes for the trip back to Ollantaytambo. Upon your arrival to train station you will be transferred by car to your hotel in Cusco.

  • Meals: Breakfast
  • Lowest Elevation: 2,040 m/6,691 ft
  • Highest Elevation: 2,440 m/8,052 ft

Tour Inclusions


  • Pre-trek briefing with your guide
  • Professional local trekking guide
  • Second tour guide for groups of 9 or more
  • Private transportation and professional driver (to the starting point of trek at Soraypampa)
  • All entrance tickets and permits for Salkantay Trek and Machu Picchu Citadel
  • Horses or mules and indigenous horsemen to carry camping equipment, client tents, dining and cooking tents, table, stools, cooking gear, stove, gas container, cutlery, plates, food and fresh vegetables
  • Train ticket from Machu Picchu Pueblo to Ollantaytambo Village (Expedition Tourist Train)
  • One trip bus tickets from Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu Citadel
  • Guided Machu Picchu tour (3 hrs.) plus personal time at the citadel
  • Porterage up to 7 kg/15 lb. (you just need to carry your daypack with everything you will need during the day)
  • 1 nights camping
  • Spacious tents / sleeping mat
  • 1 night lodging in Aguas Calientes
  • 1 duffle for personal items.
  • 1 Cook
  • All meals on the trek (2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners)
  • Food includes pancakes, omelets, soups, fresh fruit, avocado, pasta, chicken, fish, meat, rice, all rich in carbohydrates and suitable for trekking (vegetarian, vegan or special diet meals upon request)
  • Tea time before dinner (tea, coffee, cocoa, biscuits, popcorn)
  • Boiled water provided from day 2 (for drinking)
  • Wake up coca tea in your tent
  • Daily hot water for basic washing in your tent
  • Biodegradable soap and hand cleansing gel
  • Cusco Journeys & Adventure uses walkie-talkies on all treks
  • Oxygen tank & first aid kit
  • All local taxes

Does Not Include

  • First breakfast & lunch on the last day
  • Optional Wayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain tickets (US$75)
  • Optional hot springs (S/15.00 Soles)
  • Sleeping bags
  • Train Ticket From Hydroelectric to Aguas calientes town (US$38)
  • Extra activities such as zip line and barbecues
  • Additional horses for extra personal luggage above that of the personal item allowance
  • Train or hotel upgrades
  • ** Tips for porters, cooks or guides.
Starting at
$ 479 USD
Per person (Group service)

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Ilan Schapira
Salkantay trek - uma experiência mágica! Waiky Puma foi um excelente guia e amigo durante a trilha, nos ensinando tudo sobre a linda historia, cultura e geografia dos maravilhosos lugares que passamos durante a mística trilha de Salkantay. Além disso, a logística da trilha foi impecável, desde as hospedagens até o cozinheiro, tornando a experiência ainda melhor! Nota 10. Recomendo a Go Treks de olhos fechados para qualquer um que queira realizar essa e outras trilhas que este local sensacional tem a oferecer.
Marcelo S
Perfeição Tudo perfeito! Desde a recepção no aeroporto de Cuzco até o retorno. Com especial atenção ao cuidado com os clientes. Refeições e acampamentos na trilha me surpreendeu. Recomento o Elisban/Puma
Victor G
Salkantay trek Wayki Puma es un excelente guía, muy recomendable hace que tu estancia sea excelente recorrimos varios puntos de cusco Salkantay es lo mejor
Victor G
Salkantay Trek y Laguna Humantay Fue un Excelente Viaje y mi Guía sin palabras, realmente lo recomiendo bastante ya que no te ve como un pasajero mas si no como un amigo, Wayki Puma, en salkantay trek y laguna Humantay fue excelente siempre estuvo al pendiente de mi. Recomiendo mucho el trabajo de Elisban el Puma! La comida y lugares para dormir muy buenos.
Thiago Souza
Machu Picchu Ivan Puma fue incrible al presentar Machu Picchu. Mientras todos iban apurados, ello nos llevó con calma a sacar las mejores fotos y luego nos dio tiempo para disfrutar de la mejor vista del lugar. Despues sentamos y nos explicó varios detalles de la historia y de la ciudadela. Solo después de toda la información, las fotos y el maravilloso momento de contemplación, realizamos el recorrido por cada rincón de Machu Picchu.
Lauren B
Best part of Peru! Go Treks Peru twas the highlight of my trip to Peru. The food and lodging was so incredible that I somehow gained 5 lbs while walking 50 miles. Our guide, Puma, managed to keep the positive energy up in our group with jokes and stories for 5 straight days. Our group was relatively young so we kept a pretty quick pace throughout the trek but Puma was very patient and hung out with whomever was the slowest that day while being supportive. The experience was life changing and I would recommend this to everyone
Carlos Alejandr... R
Humantay y Sakantay Muy bueno, el guia muy profesinal y amable. Te ayuda con lo que necesitas. Super recomendado. Ivan Puma, Es un guía que tiene mucho conocimiento y experiencia, muy amable y atento. Lo recomiendo a ciegas.
Andrea Rosas
Maravilloso viaje Cusco es muy hermoso !!! Pero nuestro guía ( Puma) hizo que ese viaje fuera muy mágico e inolvidable. Es un guía que tiene mucho conocimiento y experiencia, muy amable y atento. Lo recomiendo
Humantay Lake and Salkantay Pass 2 days trek. One of the prettiest hikes I’ve ever done! I went alone, but ended up in a group of four along with our guide, Puma! He made the trek a once in a lifetime experience! He was very knowledgeable in history, flora, and fauna, and had a great sense of humor making learning about everything so much fun. I was only able to do one trek, but I’ll be back and booking with GoTreks Peru, again! Hopefully I get Puma again!!!!
Ro Á
Machupicchu Viajar a Perú fue una experiencia maravillosa ❤️ El guía muy atento, recorrer días caminando para llegar a machupicchu