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Why Salkantay Trek is the best Machu Picchu alternative hikes?

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Why Salkantay Trek is the best Machu Picchu alternative hikes?

Also known as Salkantay, snow capped peak of Peru located in the department of Cuzco; It constitutes one of the main elevations of the Cordillera de Vilcabamba, an extension of the Eastern Cordillera, a mountain branch of the Peruvian Andes. It reaches an altitude of 6,271 meters. It presents two summits covered by snow, known as China Salkantay and Salkantay female, separated by a port that opens to the Santa Ana Valley in the province of Urubamba. Both the mountain pass and the fluvial course that is born there are called Salkantay. This river pours its waters into the Urubamba on its left bank.

Salkantay Snow is the highest peak of the Vilcabamba mountain range, part of the Peruvian Andes. It is located in the region of Cusco at 60 km West-Northwest of the city of Cusco. It is the 38th highest peak of the Andes and the 12th highest peak in Peru. However, it is the second highest in topographic prominence in the country, after Huascarán. Salkantay is a high peak, and steep, the most specular peak of the region, with great vertical relief, particularly over the lower valleys to the north that are tributaries of the Amazon River.

Salkantay was climbed for the first time in 1952 by a Franco-American expedition composed of Fred D. Ayres, David Michael, Jr., John C. Oberlin, WV Graham Matthews, Austen F. Riggs, George I. Bell, Claude Kogan, M Bernard Pierre, and Jean Guillemin. All except Oberlin, Riggs and Guillemin reached the summit. The standard route in the mountain is to the Northeast ridge. Accessing the route typically involves three days of travel from Cusco. The climb involves about 1,800 m (5,900 ft) of vertical ascent, on glacier, snow, ice and rock. The route is in the AD range on the French scale.

The name Salkantay comes from salka, a Quechua name meaning wild, uncivilized, and was recorded in 1583. The name is often translated as -wild mountain-. Directly north of Salkantay is Machu Picchu, which is at the end of the cliff that extends down this mountain. View from Machu Picchu, the Southern Cross is on the summit of Salkantay when it is at its highest point in the sky during the rainy season. The Incas associated this alignment with the concept of rain and fertility and considered the Salkantay to be one of the main gods that controlled the climate and fertility of the western region of Cusco.

The magazine -National Geographic- featured on its cover the Inca citadel of Machu Picchu and placed it among the 28 best new trips for 2008. The Salkantay route to Machu Picchu had a display of ten pages which narrates the novel journey of five days, which has the advantage of not being congested by tourists, and also offers luxury accommodation and a path with landscapes ranging from the jungle, through the puna and glaciers to high snowy peaks with the spectacular view of the snowy Salkantay, flora natural of the area and wildlife.


Salkantay Hike

After flying from Lima, the capital of Perú, you will arrive in Cusco to walk for five days along a path through forests and dense fog, millenary stone steps and discovering the ruins of ancient fortifications and Inca cities, and all the time enjoying majestic views.

Currently the route of Salkantay, enjoys incredible landscapes, such as valleys, hillsides with native vegetation, rivers, rocks, high Andean lakes, animals. the route has a good state of preservation. Reason why it increases the influx of tourists by the route, being the second most quoted by tourists.

In addition to the tourist trains that depart from Cuzco to Aguas Calientes, there is a different (and more suggestive) way to get to Machu Picchu on foot, along the Inca Trail and the Salkantay trek. The Salkantay route is the second most attractive alternatives to Inca Trail for your Machu Picchu Vacation and preferred by adventure tourists, because it is less congested than the Inca trail, and you need to be in good shape, this route will bring exciting and exciting moments, such as the view of Salkantay, the lagoon of humantay, flora and fauna native to those places of sierra and jungle, to walk in Andean environments, among rain forests.


Salkantay Trek Altitude

Cusco rises to 3,400 meters above sea level, which can be a problem for some people, so we recommend you be in Cusco at least 48 hours before starting the road, during which you must take many liquids, avoid alcohol and rest.

The maximum height within the Salkantay trek is 4,600 meters above sea level, which is the beautiful pass of Salkantay and the minimum height is 2,200 meters above sea level in the last camp of Sahuayaco.


5 day Salkantay Trek

The route of Salkantay is an old and remote alternatives to Inca Trail trek alternative path to the Inca Trail, it has much more spectacular views and with different ecological levels we will walk among lagoons, impressive snow-capped mountains such as Salkantay and Humantay, crossing rivers and subtropical areas of abundant vegetation and fauna. This road is an excellent option for those who want to escape from the most congested routes and in a faster way, or for those who are looking for an alternative when the spaces of the traditional Inca Trail are occupied.

This impressive excursion passes under the magnificent mountain Salkantay (6,710 m / 22,014 ft), one of the highest and most impressive of the Peruvian Andes. Its first two days will be dominated by the impressive snow-capped mountains of Salkantay and Humantay, as it travels through the high Andean landscape. The third day will descend to the warm cloud forest, to reach Aguas Calientes on the fourth day. The impressive sacred citadel of the Incas Machu Picchu is visited during the last day of the program.

This excursion is an interesting alternative for those who have not found space on the route from the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. The excursion to Salkantay was recently named by the National Geographic Adventure Travel magazine among the 25 best excursions in the world.


Salkantay when to go

The best time to make these excursions on the Salkantay route, (alternative routes from the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu) is the one between the months of April to November (08 months), due to the strong rainy season that occurs in the subsequent months. The weather in Salkantay is very sunny during the day, but cold at night. The temperature drops below 0 ° C at night, but past the Salkantay you can enjoy jungle-browed climates. For which you must have the equipment and clothes necessary for mountain scenery, and also bring light clothing to get into the jungle. So if you decide to travel between those months, we recommend you to bring warm clothes so you can prevent getting sick and you can calmly walk.

If you travel in June, we recommend you to book the Inti Raymi 2020 Tour that takes place in June 24th, and also hike the Palcoyo Mountain Tour, which is an incredible Rainbow Mountain located in the Andes. 


Salkantay trekking company

At the moment the walk to Salkantay does not have any type of regulation in terms of availability or tour operators, so it can be visited in any time of year, the only detail is the rainy months (December to March), where the Rains make the trek a challenge, but with much desire and an adventurous spirit we will reach our final point of visit, Machu Picchu.

Our company is an operator of the Salkantay route, we include you all camping equipment, food, Salkantay Tickets and Machu Picchu Tickets Entrance. Enjoy with us this beautiful landscape, on the way there are herds of cattle and sheep, orchids, bear with glasses, medicinal plants of the eponca Inca, small variety of birds, fruit trees like Orange, Papaya, bananas, etc.


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