girl howlanders in machu picchu
Iglu in the premium salkantay trek on the way to Machu Picchu
boy howlanders walking around machu picchu pueblo
boy howlanders walking through the ruins of machu picchu
two people in an igloo on the Salkantay Premium Trek to Machu Picchu
Green lagoon with glacier in the background on the salkantay trek premium to Machu Picchu
Group of hikers on the premium salkantay trek to Machu Picchu
Views of a valley with mountains in the background in the Salkantay trek premium
Stairs on the salkantay trek premium trail in Machu Picchu
Snow-capped mountain in the Salkantay premium trek
Stream between mountains in the valley of the Salkantay trek premium trek
Person walking on a snowy mountain in the Salkantay trekking premium
Two llamas on the premium salkantay trek to machu picchu
Bird on a tree branch on the premium Salkantay Trek
Man jumping on the Salkantay Premium trek with views of Machu Picchu and Huayna Picchu
Views of the ruins of Machu Picchu by Salkantay Premium Trekking
Person walking through the ruins of Machu Picchu from Salkantay Trekking Premium
Views of the city of Machu Picchu from the mountain by the Salkantay premium trekking trail
Machu Picchu ruins from the Salkantay trekking premium trekking
People visiting Machu Picchu by salkantay premium trekking
People visiting Machu Picchu on the Salkantay trekking premium
Machu Picchu Ruins from the premium Salkantay Trekking
Girl looking at Machu Picchu with Huayna Picchu mountain in the background on the Salkantay premium trail
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Salkantay Trek Sky Lodge

The Salkantay route to Machu Picchu sleeping one night in the sky camp of Soraypampa

(6 reviews)

Your dates are not available? We recommend the Inca Trail.

4 days
Spanish / English
Starts: From your accommodation in Cuzco at 4:00 a.m.
Ends: To the center of Cuzco between 8:00 and 10:00 p.m.
Flexible cancellation policy


The 4-day Salkantay Trek Sky Lodge tour is the preferred alternative for travelers of the classic Salkantay that also has a plus of comfort: sleeping in the Sky Camp of Soraypampa and cabins.

If you ever dreamed of seeing the starry sky of Peru from a sky lodge, read on, cause this tour is for you 😊. In the company of a professional mountain guide, you will trek a total of 60 km, divided into 3 stages. Until you reach the final stage: the Inca city of Machu Picchu. See the complete itinerary below:

Tour details


  • Machu Picchu Llaqta Machu Picchu Route Ticket (Circuit 2)
  • Briefing
  • Private transport
  • Expert bilingual guides
  • Accommodation
  • Camping equipment
  • 7 kilos (approx. 15 lbs) of load on mules
  • Food (cook in the group)
  • Snacks and drinks
  • Hygiene products
  • First aid kit
  • Return train from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo
  • One way bus from Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu

Not included

  • Lunch in Aguas Calientes
  • Salkantay entrance (10 soles)*
  • All the services offered in the "extras" section
  • Return bus from Machu Picchu to Aguas Calientes

Important information

Since 2021, the Peruvian Ministry of Culture enabled 5 types of official entrances to visit Machu Picchu and it was decided that the visit to the Inca city should be done only by strict unidirectional routes. For this purpose, 4 circuits were created in order to better organize the traffic of travelers inside Machu Picchu, and to preserve and protect the constructions of the archaeological site for the future.

This tour includes the entrance Llaqta of Machu Picchu (Circuit 2) in the first, second or third shift and a guided group visit of 2 hours. If you want to increase your visit time inside Machu Picchu and visit one of the additional areas (Huayna Picchu Mountain, Machu Picchu Mountain or Huchuy Picchu Mountain) it is essential to add the complete corresponding entrance fee to your booking.

  • Entrance Ticket Circuito 3 + Montaña Machu Picchu
  • Entrance Ticket Circuito 4 + Montaña Huayna Picchu
  • Entrance Ticket Circuito 4 + Montaña Huchuy Picchu

✅ From Howlanders we consider it essential to include the additional entrance fee so that travelers who want to visit one of the additional areas of the citadel can enjoy a complete experience in Machu Picchu.

❌ It is not possible to visit two of the additional zones on the same day due to lack of time. 

⚡ The availability of tickets to Machu Picchu is very limited and booking two to three months in advance is recommended. Especially if you are traveling in high season.

💡 To learn more about tickets and circuits available in Machu Picchu please contact us.

Cancellation policy

If you cancel more than 7 days in advance we will refund 15% of the amount paid. If you cancel with less time or no-show, no refund will be made.

Tour itinerary

DAY 1 Cusco - Mollepata - Challacancha - Humantay Lake - Soraypampa

Walking distance: 6,21 mi. (10 km)
Starting altitude: 12467 ft. (3800 m.)
Maximum altitude: 13780 ft. (4200 m.)
Difficulty: moderate
💫 Accommodation : Sky Camp Soraypampa - Altitude 12795 ft. (3920 m.)

4 : 00 AM

Pick up in Cuzco city

The guide will pick you up at your accommodation in Cuzco at 4:00 am. With the whole group together, you will begin a journey of several hours by car, in which you will enjoy the snowy landscapes of the Salkantay or Humantay mountains.

We will stop in Mollepata for breakfast and, after regaining our strength, we will continue our journey by car until we reach Challancha: the starting point of our trek.

snow-capped mountains in the salkantay trek sky lodge
9 : 30 AM

Soraypampa - Humantay Lagoon

Around 9:30 in the morning we will start the trek to Soraypampa. The first part of the trail will take us through deep valleys. After lunch and after a short rest, we will continue to the Humantay Lagoon. Its blue-green waters make it one of the most impressive places in the Andes.

Girl on her back looking at the green lagoon on the Salkantay sky lodge 4 days

💫 Sky Camp of Soraypampa

We will continue until we reach the imposing Sky Camp of Soraypampa, where for today we will spend the night. On this first night of the 4-day Salkantay Trek, you will sleep in a spectacular Sky Dome (glass igloo) between glacial valleys.

From inside the igloo, you will see the clearest starry sky you have ever seen since at this point there is no light pollution.

Crystal igloos with snow-capped mountain in the background during the Salkantay trek sky lodge

DAY 2 Soraypampa - Salkantay Pass (Abra Salkantay) - Huayracmachay – Chaullay

Walking distance: 13,67 mi. (22 km.)
Starting altitude: 12795 ft. (3900 m.)
Maximum altitude: 15190 ft. (4600 m.)
Difficulty: High
🏠 Lodging : Andean cabins in Chaullay - Altitude 9514 ft. (2900 m.)

5 : 30 AM

Salkantay Pass (Abra Salkantay)

Today we will wake up around 5:30 in the morning and after breakfast at the Sky Camp in Soraypampa we will start the hike to the highest point of the trek: the Salkantay Pass, at 15190 ft. (4600 m.). From this summit, we will have spectacular views of the valleys and snow-capped peaks of Salkantay, Humantay, Tucarhuay, and Pumasillo.

girl in front of the abra salkantay sign during the salkantay trek sky lodge


We will continue the route for 3.1 miles (5 km) downhill to Huayracmachay, where we will have lunch. After lunch, we will access the more tropical zone called "ceja de selva", also known as "cloud forest". We will walk 6.2 miles (10 km) through a magical semi-tropical forest 🌿.


At the end of this beautiful hike, we arrive at Chaullay, where we will have dinner and spend the night in Andean cabins located in front of a spectacular valley.

andean huts chaullay in the Salkantay Trek Sky lodge

DAY 3 Chaullay - La Playa - Santa Teresa - Hidroeléctrica - Aguas Calientes

Walking distance: 16,78 mi. (27 km.)
Starting altitude: 9514 ft. (2900 m.)
Maximum altitude: 9514 ft. (2900 m.)
Difficulty: Easy
🚿 Accommodation : Hostel in Aguas Calientes - Altitude 6693 ft. (2040 m.)

6 : 00 AM

Santa Teresa Valley - La Playa

We will wake up early and after breakfast we will start our hike to the small village of La Playa, crossing the Santa Teresa Valley. During the hike, we will see a different ecosystem, composed of rivers, waterfalls, beautiful wild orchids, and plantations of coffee, banana, and avocado among the other local crops.

three trekkers in the valley of santa teresa during the salkantay trek sky domes


We will also see the village of Colpapampa, known as "the top of the cloud forest" where we will stop for lunch. After lunch, we will be picked up by a transport that will take us to Hidroelectrica, from where we will continue on foot for another 3 hours following the train line until we reach Aguas Calientes. Upon arrival, we will leave our backpacks at the lodge and take a well-deserved shower after an incredible day of trekking.

Train routes to Aguas Calientes for the Salkantay trek sky lodge

Aguas Calientes

Once in Aguas Calientes, you will have free time to rest or visit the town and its market before dinner. At 19:00 we will have dinner together at a local restaurant and coordinate with the Machu Picchu guide to prepare for tomorrow's visit.

traditional clothing market stop in aguas calientes at the salkantay trek

DAY 4 Aguas Calientes - Machu Picchu - Cuzco

Machu Picchu

Today we will get up early, as one of the most magical moments of the tour awaits us, to see how the clouds clear in Machu Picchu and the sun illuminates the citadel. This tour includes a two-hour guided tour, so you can discover all the secrets of the Inca city. Afterward, you will have free time to visit it on your own.

At the end of the tour, you can decide to go back down to Aguas Calientes on foot or by bus (12 USD).

Llama looking at camera in Machu Picchu for the salkantay trek sky lodge

Aguas Calientes 🚆 Ollantaytambo 🚐 Cuzco

You will have lunch on your own in Aguas Calientes and in the afternoon you will take the train from there to Ollantaytambo. At the train station in Ollantaytambo, a minibus will be waiting for you to take you to your hotel in Cuzco, where you will arrive approximately between 8:00 and 10:00 p.m. (depending on the train schedule).

Plaza de armas in peru on the salkantay trek sky lodge

What to bring to Salkantay Trek Sky Lodge

  • Passport and migration card (given by the Immigration Officer upon arrival)
  • Sleeping bag (-15°C)
  • Walking sticks
  • Medium trekking backpack (20 litres)
  • Waterproof pants
  • Thermal clothing
  • Waterproof jacket
  • Warm jacket
  • Hat or cap
  • Hiking boots (waterproof if possible)
  • Poncho for the rain
  • Sneakers or sport shoes
  • Sandals / flip flops
  • Swimsuite
  • Flashlight and batteries
  • Refillable water botle
  • Personal hygiene products and medication
  • Sunscreen
  • Sunglasses
  • Insect repellent
  • Snacks
  • Camera and charger
  • Pocket money in soles or USD

Where does the tour Salkantay Trek Sky Lodge start

The tour includes pick up from your accommodation in Cuzco. If your starting point to get to Cuzco is Lima, you can arrive by bus (24 hours of travel) or take a plane that has a journey time of one hour.

If you arrive from Arequipa, the bus ride takes ten hours. You can also choose to make the trip by plane, in this case the only airline that offers direct flights is LATAM Airlines.

If you arrive from Puno the best option is to do it by bus, a journey of six and a half hours. We also offer the possibility of making this journey in a tourist bus that makes stops at the most important places along the way. Departure is at 7:00 in the morning and arrival in Cuzco at 17:30.

Finally, LATAM Airlines operates a direct route Iquitos - Cuzco. This route is not available on a daily basis, so we recommend you check the dates on which it is available to plan your trip.

Questions & Answers

  • What is the bus from Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu (round trip)?

    It is the bus that connects Aguas Calientes with Machu Picchu in 20 minutes, walking this route takes an hour and a half walking. From Howlanders we recommend including this extra, since the outbound bus prevents you from having to start the tour on foot at 4:30 in the morning. The return bus is especially practical if you include an additional zone, since if you don't include it the schedule is very tight.

  • What is the difference between Huayna Picchu and Montaña de Machu Picchu?

    Both are optional visit zones located within the citadel of Machu Picchu. The main difference is that Huayna Picchu walk time is approximately an hour and a half. Due to many steps and the inclines, it is not suitable for people with vertigo. On the other hand, the Mountain of Machu Picchu is a route of approximately three and a half hours, the road is wider, and it has a more suitable walk with less incline. Keep in mind that when selecting the Machu Picchu mountain the duration of the visit is longer, you will have less time to explore Machu Picchu on your own, and the train back is later.
  • What is the Hidroeléctrica - Aguas Calientes train?

    It is the train that runs the last stretch of the walk, a 9 km route that connects Hidroeléctrica with Aguas Calientes (Machu Picchu town). This section can be done by walking or by way of the emblematic train that connects Aguas Calientes with the other towns.
  • What is the size of the group?

    In order to enjoy this route better, groups are small, with a maximum of 12 people.
  • How is the weather during the nights on the Salkantay route?

    The nights in the camps are quite cold, especially during the months of May to September. If you use a sleeping bag it will help mask temperatures of 10º to 59º Fahrenheit. In case you do not bring your own bag you can rent a sleeping bag for 20 USD. If you want to rent it, simply leave a note when you make the reservation and pay the cost at the destination.
  • Are toiletries included?

    No, each traveler has to carry their own personal hygiene products, including toilet paper.
  • Do the guides carry an oxygen bottle and first aid kit?

    Yes, the guides are prepared for any unforeseen issues. They will always carry a "spray" to mitigate altitude sickness if necessary. In addition, they will have a kit to help with small injuries that need to be cured.
  • Is there a vegan, vegetarian, or gluten-free food option?

    Yes, there is a menu available for any special diets: vegetarian, vegan, food allergies, etc. If you want to request a special diet simply leave a note in the space that you will find during the booking process.
  • Is it possible to book Salkantay with return by bus?

    No, at Howlanders we do not offer this option because it is a poor quality service that does not allow to visit Machu Picchu as it deserves to be seen. The return begins at 11AM, so we do not want to offer such a short time to experience all that this beautiful location has to offer. Therefore, the Salkantay tour is only offered with return by train. Although there is a slight increase in the price, it greatly improves the experience, which for us is the most important. Returning by train allows you to stay in Machu Picchu much longer, rest on the comfortable train and reminisce about the stunning landscape.
  • If I am a single traveler, do I have to share a room?

    Yes, all the accommodations are for 2 people. Keep in mind that if you travel alone you will share a room and tent with another person of your same gender.
  • I travel alone, do I have to share a room?

    Yes, in this tour the availability in the Skydomes and Biodomes is very limited. Therefore, it is not possible to reserve accommodation in the camps for only one person. Keep in mind that if you plan on traveling alone you will need to share a room with another traveler of your same gender.
  • What is the difference between Salkantay Trek and Salkantay Trek Premium Skydome??

    There are two major differences, the first is accommodation, which in the premium version includes the Skydomes. In addition, the itinerary varies, in the premium version you reach Aguas Calientes through the road that connects Llactapata with Hidroeléctrica. In this way you avoid having to take a transport to Hydroelectric, traveling more kilometers along the nature trails.

Salkantay Trek Sky Lodge tour reviews with Howlanders


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