Tips for the Salkantay / Machu Picchu trek

Apu Salkantay receives some of the most snowfall in Peru. At 6,271 meters above sea level, conquering its summit can be a challenging task. For this reason, the Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu is for trekking lovers who can handle a bit of a challenge. It’s best to prepare yourself for this daunting trek. Start with these tips:

Reserve Your Trek in Advance

As one of the more popular trekking routes, your Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu should be booked in advance of your arrival in Peru. Only a handful of agencies are authorized to carry out the trek and only 500 people per day are allowed on the trail. Trekking lovers will love to know that National Geographic has listed the Salkantay Trek as one of the 25 best treks in the world.

If you wish to book this tour with Explorandes you can contact us.

Acclimatizing for the Salkantay / Machu Picchu Trek

Like any trek at elevation, it’s necessary to allow for acclimatization time. Two days of rest at altitude are recommended for this trek. Eat light and drink lots of coca tea while acclimatizing. Do this and you’re likely to avoid any symptoms of altitude sickness and the discomforts that come with it.

What to Pack in your Backpack For the Trek

This 7-day trek at sustained altitude means there are a few items to make sure to include in your pack. They are: waterproof trekking boots, rain gear, binoculars, flashlight, sunscreen, insect repellent, medicine for altitude sickness, water purification tablets, and a thermal sleeping bag for -10 degrees Celsius. (If trekking with Explorandes, we provide the thermal sleeping bags.)

How to prevent and combat altitude sickness?

If you do happen to experience altitude sickness during your Salkantay Trek, you’ll be looking for a way to ease the headaches, difficulty sleeping, dizziness, increased heart rate, nausea, and vomiting. It’s best to lie down with your head elevated at 30 degrees. This will lessen the headache. It’s also advised to stay hydrated and take any medication a doctor prescribes you. High altitude sickness affects 25% of people traveling at altitudes above 2,438 meters above sea level.


The Salkantay / Machu Picchu Trek is one of the most recognized treks in the world, offering trekkers great nature views and an incredible final destination – the ancient Inca citadel of Machu Picchu. It’s important to keep in mind that this trek requires some preparation and the support of an experienced guide. Explorandes is one such qualified operator of this trek. If you’re interested in knowing prices and availability for this trek, don’t hesitate to contact us.

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