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“Good and cheap alternative to reach Macchu Pitchu”

Salkantay Trail Peru
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Maras and Moray Day Trip from Cusco
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Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Salkantay proximity to Machu Picchu makes trekking around it an attractive alternative to the oversubscribed Inca Trail. There are three possible routes starting from Mollepata. All three begin with a day of approach, heading north along a dirt road. Then they diverge. The longest route, heads north to the base of the mountain, then turns right, following the east side of the mountain, then heads northeast to eventually join the Inca Trail itself at Wayllabamba. This route takes 4 days to reach the Inca Trail, then another 2 days to reach Machu Picchu. The most common route used by trekking companies heads north, then west around the west side of the mountain, over Salcantay Pass at 4600m. It continues as far as the village of La Playa, where buses usually make the connection to Santa Teresa. From here, trekkers walk to the Hydroelectric project then either train or walk to Aguas Calientes, at the base of Machu Picchu. This route takes 4 days in total. A more satisfying variation on this route turns right before reaching La Playa, over a ridge and arriving directly at Aguas Calientes two days later. This route takes 6 days in total.
Level 4 Contributor
42 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“Good and cheap alternative to reach Macchu Pitchu”
Reviewed September 3, 2013

Day Trip to Macchu Pitchu are a rip off. Inca Trail is super expensive. If you are a backpacker on a budget you should consider Salkantay trek to reach Macchu Pitchu.
The trek is demanding due to its duration but you have options (such as horses) to make it easier.
You will get to Machu Pitchu on the last through the main gates though not the Sun Gate like Inca Trail. However with a price factor inferior to 0.5 compared to INCA trail for the same duration and close to 1 compared to day trips, it is really a nice alternative. Plus you will get to pass close to the magnificient Salkantay summit though the Salkantay pass at 4600m !!
All Cuzco's agencies are proposing this trek!

Visited August 2013
3 Thank WorldwideTraveler007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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108 reviews from our community

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Tucson, Arizona
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Salkantay Trek with Bioandean”
Reviewed July 26, 2013

This company was great, you pay a little bit more than all the people on the street will offer you but it is well worth it. Our guide, Juan, was the best and was full of energy, knowledge, and jokes to keep everyone in good spirits, he was the best guide on the trail. Our chef, Pacolo, made some of the best food we had in Peru, we even got him to make Guinea pig. The trek itself is stunning, it tough don't get me wrong, but the views and the diversity of the landscape are awesome. I recommend this company of all the companies we talked to this one seemed the most genuine and reliable.

Visited May 2013
1 Thank Conor K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ottawa, Canada
Level 4 Contributor
36 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
“Loved it!”
Reviewed July 2, 2013

First of all, my first advice to you is: DO NOT BOOK THIS TREK FROM HOME! Do yourself a favour and save some money... There are PLENTY of travel agencies all around Cusco, Lima and Paracas where you can buy the trek. I would suggest you buy it a few days in advance to make sure you have an entrance ticket for Machu Picchu and a train ticket from Ollaytambo to Cusco! There are daily departures for this trek. There is no reason for you to pay tremendous amounts of money.

Just to give you an example... We booked the 5D/4N trek while we were in Paracas on June 4. We paid $300 US at Emotion Tour. The owner there arranged everything and gave us the tour operator number. When we arrived in Cusco, we called the operator and arranged for a briefing day. The trek started on June 9. We had a nice hostel in Aguas Caliente, an entrance ticket to Machu Picchu and a train back to Cusco from Aguas Caliente at 6:30 pm. We were quite a large group but had so much fun. I know some people prefer smaller group but it is hit or miss. It seemed to me that people pay different travel agencies and these agencies deal with a few tour operators. Our tour operator was Arsa. The guides were friendly and seemed to enjoy their jobs. The food was very good and the cooks made sure it was cooked according to "western standards".

While we were on the trek, some people in our group told us they had booked the trek from home (USA and Europe) and paid between $600 to $800!!!! Someone is making money somewhere. That is to say that I emailed a few Peruvian tour companies while I was still in Canada planning our trip and received quotes of $700 and sometimes $900! and these were tour companies recommended by Lonely Planet. I am so glad we took the chance and waited to be in Peru. We received the same service as everyone else on the trek. The money doesn't go to the guides... I bet you if you email Emotion Tour in Paracas from your home country, they will arrange the trek for you.

Also, we recommend you do the 5D/4N rather than 4D/3N. The only difference between the two was that you get a free afternoon in Santa Teresa where you can go to the hot springs (amazing site) and a free morning where you can go zipling.

Included: food, horses who carried our bags, tents (and set up for us), mattresses, guides, Machu Picchu entrance ticket, train from Aguas Caliente to Ollaytambo, bus from Ollaytambo to Cusco. Not included: sleeping bag (I rented one in Cusco. I paid 70 soles for five days), water (you can buy supply along the way), bus from Aguas Caliente to Machu Picchu (15 min bus ride.. you can hike it up if you'd prefer), hot springs in Santa Teresa.

If you want more information, don't hesitate to contact me!

Visited June 2013
15 Thank turtlefan8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, Singapore
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
“Salkantay Trail with Bioandean was good!”
Reviewed June 26, 2013

Bioandean did a great job organizing a small and cosy group to trek up the Salkantay Trail.
We were fortunate that the group consisted of only 7 people with comparable fitness level (some matching must have been done).
The guide was versatile enough to modify and suggest changes in itinerary for situations that crop up (my travel partner sprained her ankle, developed flu and I developed bad altitude sickness). So instead of making us trek up, alternatives like hiring a horse to bring us up was made.
In addition, special meals were also prepared for me in consideration of my weakened stomach and constitution and the cook was able to whip up a different meal for me consisting of chicken porridge.
Generally food was excellent and it was almost a miracle that treats like apple pie, pancakes and chocolate pudding was available at our tables. In addition, the equipment provided was top notch - NorthFace tents and NorthFace thermal sleeping bags (although we did have to pay additional amounts to rent it). Although it was cold, we were kept nice and warm and well fed.

Visited June 2013
Thank JaclynThang
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
“Loved it asides from salkantay trek Peru's management and miss communication...”
Reviewed June 15, 2013

We did the 5d/4n trek.. The actual trek was amazing our guide, the accomodation and the food was great. My issue with salkantay trek.Peru came due to the fact that I booked in advance.. 'Do not book in advance' my trip cost $559 whole the other people on the exact same trek cost $380.. this is a huge difference.. We where told the difference was cause we booked through an American company.. And that tour opporators join together to make the trips more affordable for them selves.. If there was no one else booked on our trek we should not be penalised for this and as far as I knew we were booking directly with the company in cusco. Salkantay trek had my money and were earning interest on it for the begining part of the year and I still paid more for the trek.. When asked about it we were given $50 refund.. Which is half of what should have been refunded.. We also did not follow the schedule on the 4th day and instead did a boring walk along the river in the morning. We were also asked to pay for our transport to the hot pools which was meant to be included.. These things should be discussed with the guide and clients so that there is no confusion on the trek.. We were also not given duffel bags and coca leaves before starting the trek which the other people who payed less where given.. The duffel bag would have made our lives a lot easier due to the fact that we could only take 8 kg on the trek and had to leave some stuff behind.. Overall the issues we had were with the management and not with the trek.. The trek was amazing...

Visited June 2013
Thank Jktravelsamericas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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