Create Account My Account
Home Group Private Testimonials Info Contact Us Travel Insurance Follow on Facebook

New Search     

Trip Style
Group Adventure
Travel Club
Print Itinerary
Peru: Trek to Machu Picchu - 8 Days


*SOLO TRAVELERS: You're in luck! We provide free roommate matching - unless you'd prefer to purchase a single room.

Private Tour Eligible!: This tour is also eligible to be booked as a private tour providing that 2 or more people book together. You can even start your trip on any day that works best for you. Contact Us for details.



Group Departure Date in 2019:
- September 5 - 12, 2020*

*With optional 3 day Amazon Rainforest trip extension immediately following (see below for more details)!

This is a classic 'must do' for any adventure traveler. Join the GECtravel on a locally guided group trek through the Andes Mountains to Machu Picchu. On this trek, we'll have a full support staff, including a cook, local guide, and porters (with horses) to carry all our gear and setup our camps.

We'll trek 4 days on ancient Inca trails (on the less crowded and less touristy Salkantay Trail - named as one of the 25 best treks in the world by National Geographic Adventure Travel Magazine), camp 3 nights and spend 1 night at a 4* hotel in the quaint town of Aguas Calientes at the valley below Machu Picchu. And we'll start and end in a 4* hotel in the beautiful and famous Inca capital city of Cusco.

Our trek will take us through the impressive Andes mountains with distant views of snow-capped mountains, we'll pass over the 14,845 foot (4,525m) Salkantay Mountain pass, have a chance to soak in some natural hot springs along the trek, and we'll end our 4 day trek with a guided exploration of Machu Picchu, one of the 7 Wonders of the World.

After visiting Machu Picchu, we'll journey back to Cusco aboard a scenic train ride that follows the river through the dramatic mountain valley. It's an adventure that just can't be missed.

Want to continue your trip? Why not join others from the trek on an optional 3 day Amazon Rainforest trip extension!

CLICK HERE for details and to book.

*** NOTE: when booking your Amazon extension, please choose the appropriate departure date that corresponds with your trek:

Group Departure Date in 2020:
- September 12 - 14, 2020


GET THE SCOOP! Want to see what previous travelers are saying about GEC? Check out the club's Testimonial Page.


Make Friends. Travel the World. With over 100,000+ members across the US and Canada, GECtravel is the largest and fastest growing adventure travel club in the world! GEC is a unique and exciting social travel club open to anyone interested in traveling to exciting destinations around the world with other like-minded adventurers. Membership is free.. just sign up for a trip and you are a member!

Places Visited:

Group Trek to Machu Picchu, Peru, Cusco, Aguas Calientes

Trip Itinerary:
B: Breakfast | L: Lunch | D: Dinner

Brief Itinerary:

Day 1: Arrive in Cusco. Group Orientation.
Day 2: Free Day. Optional Sacred Valley Tour. (B)
Day 3: Start Trek. (B, L, D)
Day 4: Trek over high pass. Hot Springs. (B, L, D)
Day 5: Trek. (B, L, D)
Day 6: Trek to Aguas Calientes. (B, L)
Day 7: Machu Picchu & Train to Cusco. (B, L)
Day 8: Trip ends. (B)

Detailed Itinerary:

Day 1:
Arrive in Cusco (11,203 feet - 3,395 meters). Group Orientation.

Arrive at the designated hotel OR if you purchased airport transfers through us, then you will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel.

In the late afternoon, meet your GEC Trip Leader and your fellow group members at the trip orientation meeting. Later, why not join your Trip Leader and group members for an optional dinner and a night out on the town.

Overnight in an excellent 4* hotel in Cusco

NOTE: to better acclimate to the high altitude, it is Highly Recommended to arrive 1 day early. Extra night hotel is available to purchase during checkout).

Day 2:
Free Day (11,203 feet - 3,395 meters). Optional Sacred Valley Tour.

Today is a free day to spend exploring Cusco, hiking up to the ruins above the city, OR why not join the optional day trip to the incredibly beautiful Sacred Valley.

Scared Valley Tour: After breakfast, a local guide will meet the group and we will drive towards the Sacred Valley of the Incas stopping along the way to feed Llamas and Alpaca and for fantastic views of the Urubamba valley, where the crops lay across the mountains like a colorful carpet. We will also visit the vibrant market of Pisac where you will have free time to interact with the local craftsmen and, if you wish, purchase their hand-made items and tourist souvenirs. Finally, after an included lunch, we will visit Ollantaytambo, an attractive town of Inca origin with remarkable channels and stone streets. Here we will visit some amazing Inca ruins at the end of the valley. We return to Cusco around 5 or 6pm.

Overnight in an excellent 4* hotel in Cusco

Day 3:
Start Trek (11,203 to 9,196 to 13,779 feet) (B, L, D)

Approximate Distance: 8.7 miles (14k)
Approximate Trail Time: 6-8 Hours +/-

NOTE: all distances and trail time, as well as stopping locations are approximate and are subject to a variety of conditions, including the Trekking Guideā€™s discretion, pace of the group, weather, trail conditions/closures, etc.

We leave Cusco (11,203f - 3,395m) early (6:00 am) and drive to the village of Mollepata, an Indian Village situated in a citrus growing area at a subtropical region (9,196f - 2,803m). A bit further down we will arrive in Challacancha, where we will meet the horse handlers and horses, who will be our support during the trek.

From Challacancha we start our trek on the Salkantay Trail with a climb toward Salkantay Pampa, where we will have lunch. After a short rest we will continue to climb toward Soroycocha (13,779f - 4,200m), our first campsite. From here we will have a magnificent view of Apu Salkantay (a snow capped mountain 20,474f - 6,271m high) also called the Guardian Lord of Cusco.

Overnight Camping

Day 4:
Trek over high pass. Hot Springs (13,779 to 14,845 to 9,481 feet) (B, L, D)

Approximate Distance: 11 miles (18k)
Approximate Trail Time: 10-12 hours +/-

Following a hardy breakfast, we will head out around 6:30 am. Heading toward Collpapampa, we will start with a 2.5-3 hour ascent until we arrive at the highest point on our trek: Salkantay Mountain pass (14,845f - 4,525m). Here we will enjoy wonderful views of the surrounding glaciers and the snow-capped mountain of the Vilcabamba Mountain Range, with the south face of Salkantay towering above us. We may even be able to spot some chinchillas and Andean Condors in their natural habitat.

We'll then head to Huayracmachay, where we will enjoy our well-earned lunch. After lunch, we'll descend down towards a more tropical climate and into the so-called cloud forest. Along the route, we can see the remains of the original ancient Inca trail. After following the Salkantay River, we'll arrive at our second camp at Qollpapampa (9,481f - 2,890m). Should you arrive into camp early enough, you can arrange with your guide to visit the nearby natural hot springs... a well needed break after a day of trekking (subject to being open... the winter river flooding sometimes wash them out and need to be rebuilt).

NOTE: This day we will be a long but beautiful day of hiking - about 10-12 hours including hiking, lunch, views, etc. Be sure to bring your headlamp/flashlight as we may hike into dusk. Overnight Camping

Day 5:
Trek (9,481 to 8,858 feet) (B, L, D)

Approximate Distance: 7 miles (11k)
Approximate Trail Time: 7-9 Hours +/-

After breakfast we will descend through a narrow path toward the banks of the Cachora River (6 hours walking). Today we will enjoy a nice warm climate. As we descend, there is a marked change in the flora and fauna as it becomes more lush and subtropical. On the route we will pass through wild fruits plantations such as passion fruit, coffee, etc.

After passing the waterfalls of Coripacchi and the settlement at Winaypoko, we will stop for a delicious Lunch. In the afternoon we will continue close to the banks of the river and we will pass Sahuayaco, a small village of less than 20 families. Later we'll arrive at our campsite in Lucmabamba... about 8,858f (2,700m).

Overnight Camping

Day 6:
Trek to Aguas Calientes (8,858 to 6,561 feet) (B, L)

Approximate Distance: 7 miles (11k)
Approximate Trail Time: 8-9 Hours +/-

After breakfast, we'll start with a 2 1/2 hour climb to the village of El Mirador (9,383f - 2,860m), where we will enjoy an exceptional and uniquely angled view of Machu Picchu that only trekkers on this trail can get.

We'll then enjoy a last lunch in nature at the lookout point of Llaqtapata (8,694f - 2,650m) where we can view both Machu Picchu and the iconic Salkantay Mountain. We'll also have the opportunity to view the ancient Incan ruins of Llactapata, which have recently been restored.

A 2-hour descent brings us to the Aobamba River. Along the way, we'll pass through lush bamboo forests and see wild orchards and coffee trees. We'll then arrive at the hydroelectric plant of Machu Picchu, where we board a train that takes us on a short, scenic 30-minutes train ride to the quaint town of Aguas Calientes. Here we transfer to our hotel. Tonight, after long and well-earned hot showers, why not join your fellow group members on a fun night out at a local restaurant?

Overnight in excellent guest lodge hotel in Aguas Calientes

Day 7:
Machu Picchu & Train to Cusco. (B, L)

Early in the morning we'll be one of the first to arrive at the gates of Machu Picchu, where the guide will offer a fully guided tour of these spectacular and mysterious ruins. We will then have free time to explore the ruins on our own after the tour.

After a delicious buffet lunch, we take the afternoon train back to Cusco where we are transferred to our hotel. Tonight, join the group on a last night celebration in the beautiful city of Cusco.

Overnight in an excellent 4* hotel in Cusco

Day 8:
Trip ends. (B)

Trip ends after breakfast. If you purchased airport transfers through us, then you are picked up at the hotel and transferred to the airport to catch your flight home.

Want to continue your trip? Why not join others from the trek on an optional 3 day Amazon Rainforest trip extension!

CLICK HERE for details and to book.

*** NOTE: when booking your Amazon extension, please choose the appropriate departure date that corresponds with your trek:

Group Departure Dates in 2020:
- September 12 - 14, 2020

Important Information

This is a locally guided GEC small group trip that is open for anyone to join. You can sign up as a solo traveler* OR join with a spouse, friends or other family members. All are welcome!
*Solo Travelers: You're in luck! No mandatory single supplements. We provide free roommate matching - unless, of course, you'd prefer a single room which you can purchase during checkout.

We will provide a complete example packing list before departure, however please see the "Download Trip Dossier" link in the right hand column of this page for a starter packing list and very important information about the trek! ---->

This tour requires a total minimum group size to run. You are responsible for making your own international flight arrangements between your home city and Cusco, Peru airport (code: CUZ) as per the itinerary (if booking the Amazon extension after, you will likely fly into Cusco (CUZ) and out of Lima (LIM) as we book the group's internal domestic flights (mandatory add-on when booking the Amazon). Full details will be emailed to you after booking, however contact us if you have any questions). However, flights SHOULD NOT be booked until you receive a written guarantee that the Land Only portion of your trip has been fully booked. Please contact us if you would like help or advice booking your flights.

This trek is on the Salkantay trail. It is a 4 day trek along ancient Inca trails that run through the Andes mountains and reaches altitudes of over 14,845+ feet (4,525m). Please confer with your doctor prior to purchasing this trip to ensure that you are physically capable of completing this adventure safely and so that you fully understand the effects and required actions when trekking at altitude.

Due to limited capacities of the trail, we may be joined by other trekkers outside of our group.

Depending on the conditions of the trail, weather, schedules, group fitness/acclimation levels, etc., the local trekking guide may, for the safety of the group, choose to alter the itinerary.

Prices are based on double occupancy. If you would like your own hotel room and tent (where available), please choose the optional single supplement at check out. If you do not mind being paired up with a roommate of the same gender, then the single supplement does not apply.

Your passport must be valid for at least 6 month following the last day of the tour.

At the time of printing, no Visas are required for citizens of the US and Canada. Please be sure to check with the Peruvian embassy in the US (or your country of citizenship) before the trip to ensure that this is still the case.

We will be camping for 3 nights during the trek. We will have a support staff, including cooks and porters to carry our gear and set up our camp. However it is a camp and facilities are limited to what we carry in.

Trip ID: SA1162
Departure Dates:

Local Fee
Optional Add-Ons
OPTIONAL: Airport Greet & Hotel Transfers
OPTIONAL: Single Room (choose only if you want your own hotel room-where available)
OPTIONAL: Guided Sacred Valley Tour
OPTIONAL: Sleeping Bag Rental

Price Includes
  • Expert English speaking local guide
  • 8 days: 3n camping & 4n excellent 4* hotels
  • Guided tour of Machu Picchu
  • Entrance fees to Machu Picchu
  • Train from Machu Picchu to Cusco area
  • Fully supported 4 day trek to Machu Picchu, including:
  • -- Porters and cooks
    -- All meals on trek & breakfast in hotels
    -- Filtered or boiled water during trek
    -- Horses/mules during trek to carry gear
    -- Personal duffel bag to use that holds 7 kg / 15.43 lbs of your clothing, gear, etc.
    -- All camping gear, including tents & inflatable mattress (except sleeping bag)
    -- Dining tent, cooking tent, bathroom tents
    -- Communication equipment for guide
Price Does Not Include
  • International airfare
  • Airport Transfers
  • Meals and beverages other than specified
  • Sleeping bag
  • Visit to hot springs during trek (if open)
  • Travel medical insurance (details)
  • Personal expenses
  • Tips
Accomodation Included
  • 3 nights 4* hotel in Cusco
  • 1 night 4* lodge in Aguas Calientes
  • 3 nights camping
Transportation Included
  • Modern private A/C vehicles
  • Train
  • Trekking
Meals Included
  • All meals while trekking
  • Breakfast at hotels
Seasonal Info
  • The best months to visit Machu Picchu (and to trek) are in the dry season from May to September when the conditions are fairly dry and the weather generally sunny. However the months of June, July and August can also be slightly cooler at night so bring a good quality 4 season sleeping bag (or rent through us) and ample layers of warm clothes. Of course you may see some rain during the dry season so you will need to prepare accordingly, but generally it is quite nice. The dry cool nights also provide for some amazing star gazing of the southern stars!
Download Trip Dossier
To view our dossier you will need Acrobat Reader installed on your computer.

Click here to download your free copy.
You must have Adobe Acrobat Reader to open our Dossiers.

Advanced Search Photo Gallery - click here