Explore the most popular trails near Machu Picchu with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Machu Picchu, Cusco Map

In my opinion, this is the way to enter Machu Picchu. It’s a great feeling of accomplishment to enter through the Sun Gate. If you don’t have the whole four days to do the full trail, this one day trek is wonderful. Took us about 4 hours to get from KM 104 to the Sun Gate. You get to experience beautiful views of the Andes and two other Inca ruins along the way.

just finished this in 3 days with 2 friends. we did it on our own without a guide. went up to humantay lake first then on to the salkantay. make sure you acclimate before starting. it is a tough hike but very rewarding. camp in one of the coffee plantations just after the town of la playa. there is a lot of water on the trail so bring a filter and dont bother carrying much water. the final several miles to aguas calientes is miserable as it follows the train track and you are walking on loose rocks the entire way.

Challenging hike, beautiful scenery culminating in Machu Picchu. Unforgetable experience!

28 days ago

Wonderful hike but very steep. Expect the route to always be fairly busy. Track is extremely narrow so at times you may be 'in line' to continue. However, use those moments as breaks because you'll need them + the views are progressively stunning of the Andes.
Summit is well worth it but not much room so you can't relish in it too much without inconveniencing others.
Can be quite muddy with very small 'rock steps'.
Any moderately fit person is capable.

1 month ago

I did this trek solo with all my own gear and food /water starting on Mollepata. See my profile for a day-by-day breakdown. The All Trails map is outdated in spots, as I found, and it starts from Soraypampa vs Mollepata. It was 5 days, 4 nights and incredible. Email me if you have any questions - bobbyboombeck at gmail dot com.

Difficult, but worth it!

We did this as part of a guided tour through Mountain Lodges of Peru (highly recommend) in June 2016. I struggle with altitude but spent two days in Cusco beforehand and took Diamox and was able to manage it fine. The last little bit was tough, above 14,000 feet, but definitely worth it. I did not take hiking poles and was fine except at the very highest part because altitude makes me dizzy. If I did it again I would probably take poles. Pack lots of layers and water.

2 months ago

We did this as a 3 day hike, beginning in Sorayampa. Don’t underestimate the effects of the altitude near the pass- it’s extremely hard to breathe- we ended up taking a horse for about a mile or so until the top of the pass. After that, the trail gradually descends and the scenery is beautiful. The campsites were nice- our guide took good care of us! We ended in Agua Caliente, and bussed to Machu Picchu.
We chose this trail instead of the original Inca Trail, as there are less people.

2 months ago

We went independently backpacking. Amazing nature & landscapes. You pass through 3 different ecozones. The directions are easy to followed as we we downloaded the offline map from all trails. The hike is hard; altitude plays a huge role in its difficultly. Better to acclimatize for 3 days before hitting the trail. You need to carry meals at least for 3 days as in some camping areas you might not find food. At first two nights it gets really cold. It’s worth all the tiredness.

This hike was AMAZING. I recommend spending the extra Soles to continue on to Huayna Picchu or Waynapicchu (the higher mountain). Waynapicchu isn’t for the faint of heart, however. If you have problems with altitude, heights, or climbing narrow stairs, this probably isn’t the one for you. The views are spectacular.

2 months ago


4 months ago

We chose Valencia Travel and they were excellent. The hike itself was my first major hike and it was something I will never forget!

Perfect hike to Machu Picchu if you don't have a ton of time in order to do the 4 day Inca Trail.

5 months ago

Dangerous but incredible

Finished the four-day Inca Trail and capped it off with a hike up Huayna Picchu. The trail is mostly stairs and via ferrata (metal cables bolted into the rock that you can use to pull yourself up). It’s very steep, and the average time it takes to complete it is two hours.

7 months ago

A great alternative to the Inca Trail - you get to see high mountains with snow, the jungle, the country... it's really nice! However there's a lot more climbing down than up so your knees may hurt! And the afternoon of the second day is really muddy, so boots are recommended.

Incredible, terrifying, and absolutely breathtaking!

One of the best treks I've ever done

Just returned from Machu Picchu. The trails around there are difficult for sure and the trek up Huayna Picchu was steep and difficult. I live in a town whose elevation is around 500, so the trail was made that much more difficult to me since I am not used to the altitude. The trail at some points was so steep that I had to use my hands to climb up the rocks in front of me. I could barely breath, my legs were burning, and my pack was too heavy, but it was the best hike I've EVER done hands down. The reward of the top was totally worth it and it will be in my heart forever.
p.s. it felt like the walk through Machu Picchu and the hike up to the top of Huayna Picchu was more...much more than 2 miles...

Not for the faint of heart, but worth every drop of sweat and every scary dropoff once you reach the summit!

I've never done a hike as magical as this one.

Great place to visit

Difficult and nerve-wracking at various points of the hike - even at the very top. But as most of the reviews point out, it's a cannot miss...so get those tired legs loosened up from your trek and get after it

Oh so scary once you're almost to the top. It's a very challenging hike. But it's amazing.

9 months ago

Absolutely amazing

Steep and strenuous hike from start to finish, but well worth the climb to the majestic views of one of the Seven Wonders of the World.

9 months ago

This is a gorgeous trek with lots of great mountain landscapes. Here is a trip report I wrote describing my experience on the Salkantay Trek. https://backpackersreview.wordpress.com/trip-reports/machu-picchu-salkantay-trek/

10 months ago

Stair, stairs, and more stairs. Great views of Machu Picchu when you get to the top. Be prepared for dazzling drop offs.

Steep, gets your heart pumping, but not at all technical. Basically a hard stair master work-out rewarded with an AMAZING view

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