marca peru Cusco

Machula expeditions alternative trek to machu picchu

  • Aguas Calientes Machu Picchu Humantay Lake Tour 2 Days
Sacred Lake on The Salkantay Mountain | Aguas Calientes | Machu Picchu

Humantay Lake and Machu Picchu Tour 2 Days

This 2 days tour to Machu Picchu consider 1 day from Cusco to Humantay Lake and return to Cusco. The next day, early  from Cusco to Aguas Calientes and Machu Picchu citadel. If you are seeking for alternative hiking experience to Machu Picchu, must be  consider the Inca Quarry Trek alternatives like: Moonstone Trek to Machu Picchu 5 days, Ancascocha Trek 5 Days. Also we have Machu Pichu Tours from 2 or 3 days.

The Humantay Lake

Located in the Vilcabamba mountain range, at the foot of the Humantay mountain, is the fascinating lagoon of the same name, at an altitude of 4484 m. or 14711 feet. Humantay mountain is one of highest in the Cusco region (5910 m or 19389 feet), which in recent years has become the destination of the hikers visiting the southern Peru.

To reach to Humantay lagoon of glacial origin, you have to go from the city of Cusco to the town of Soray Pampa, which is located 3,900 meters above sea level, close to another spectacular mountain: Salkantay . Then, you should take a walk for about 3 hours along a high Andean path on which you can see multicolored landscapes where the areas of local cultivation that harmonize with the snowy mountains predominant.

Humantay Lake from Soraipampa

The Incas worshiped the mountains as protective gods and called them “apus.” Apus Salkantay and Ausangate are the same as brothers, each one has his family, the wife of Apu Salkantay is the Veronica mountain, her children are the (Humantay mountain or Tukarhuay) son younger and (Yanantay or Coyllur) younger daughter.

Humantay Lake - Machu Picchu - Aguas Calientes Tour

Humantay Lake Difficulty 

There is not much difficulty to do the walk. The trip to Soray Pampa, starting point of the walk, is by bus. When you get to this place you start walking around 1.8 km. The distance is short, however the slope goes from 3900 m. up to 4484 m. (Be careful with Sickness Altitude) It is necessary to stop continuously to breathe. Getting to Humantay lagoon takes 2 to 4 hours.

View from Soray Pampa to Humantay Lake - Route

Aguas Calientes (Machu Picchu town)

Machu Picchu town, also called Aguas Calientes, is a Peruvian locality located in the department of Cusco, province of Urubamba, district of Machu Picchu. It is the capital of the homonym district, where the District Municipality is based. It is the main access road to the Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu.

Due to its geographical location, just 9 kilometers from the Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu, it is the place where tourists who visit the Inca city arrive (by train only). The town has developed an important tourist and hotel infrastructure from simple accommodation to exclusive hotels.

Among its most important tourist attractions are the thermal baths located 800 m from the town, to which medicinal properties are attributed. (The name “Aguas Calientes” – Hot Waters – is origin for the name of the town)

Other nearby tourist attractions are the Mandor waterfall, 3 km from the town following the northwest railway line; the Manuel Chávez Ballón Site Museum, located on the road to the Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu, 2 km from the town.

You can arrive here, from Cusco to Ollantaytambo by  bus, next using the train from Ollantaytambo to Aguas Calientes (Machu Picchu Town).

Aguas Calientes - Machu Picchu

Is possible to get Humantay Lake from Aguas Calientes?

Going from Machu Picchu Town to the lagoon, technically is possible. However, it is the reverse route of Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu.

The difficulty is quite high and there are no travel operators that make this route that would require at least 4 days of hiking, carrying out camps at night. The altitude to be faced is from 2093 m (Aguas Calientes) to 5075 m (Salkantay Pass).

Aguas Calientes to Humantay Lake Route

It is a route that we do not recommend, if you are interested in making this trip we recommend doing the Salkantay Trek or the Inca Quarry Trail.

Humantay Lake – Aguas Calientes – Machu Picchu Map

Aguas Calientes Humantay Lake Machu Picchu Tour 2 days(Download in PDF: Humantay Lake | Aguas Calientes | Machu Picchu Map)

We want to give you a unique experience of Cusco region, and if you have short on time, this tour will be a great option. It may be the highlight of your trip.

Tour of 2 days with Humantay Lake and Machu Picchu

Pre -Trek Briefing.

When you arrive at your hotel in Cusco, you will have a meeting with our main guide who will give you ample information about your destination 1 or 2 days before your trip, all about your tour schedule, and you can also ask questions for the last preparation. before starting the trek.


Day 1:  Humantay Lake Tour

The first day will start by picking you up from your hotel in Cusco at 5:30 AM with our private minivan and head to Humantay Mountain. We will stop along the way at Mollepata community to have breakfast.

After our delicious breakfast, we will continue to Soraypampa (3,850 meters above sea level) situated at the bottom of Salkantay mountain. From there will start our 3 kilometers walk, approximately two hours mostly uphill, to reach Humantay mountain and the crystalline lake.

We will spend time at the lake to relax and absorbs the wonderful energy of the area, but also to learn about its history. We will then return along the same route to get back to our minivan. Lunch will be taken at Mollepata before heading back to Cusco. We will arrive back in Cusco at approximately 5:30 PM.

Day 2: Ollantaytambo – Aguas Calientes – Machu Picchu

Again, we will pick you up at your hotel early in the morning and head to Ollantaytambo, a beautiful village in the heart of the Sacred Valley. From there, we will take the 6:10  AM train to Aguas Calientes, the base town of Machu Picchu. The train journey is about an hour and a half, so we will arrive in Aguas Calientes at 8:35 AM.

We chose the 30 minutes bus option for you to reach Machupicchu, as the 2 hours walk to get to the top will tire you too much for the visit.

Once we get to Machupicchu, your tour with a specialized guide will last about 2.5 hours. Don´t worry, you will then have some free time to explore the archaeological site on your own.

Machu Picchu

We will return to Ollantaytambo on the 5:35 PM train, where our bus will be waiting for us to take you back to your hotel in Cusco. We will arrive in Cusco at approximately 8:30 PM.


Included in the Humantay Lake and Machu Picchu tour

    • Tourist guide fluent in English, Spanish and Quechua
    •  Bus round trip Humantay lake – Cusco and Cusco- Ollantaytambo
    •  First day lunch
    •  First day breakfast
    • Bus one way up from aguas calientes to machu picchu inca city
    • Train round trip Ollantaytambo – Aguas Calientes – Machu Picchu
    • The entrance ticket to Machu Picchu
    • walking stick for first day

Not Included in the tour

    • Lunch for the second day
    • Breakfast
    • Dinner
    • Water bottle
    • Snacks
    • Bus one way down  from Machu Picchu to aguas calentes.

What To Bring ?

  • Original passport (better to also bring a copy to buy tickets)
  • Raincoat
  • Sunglasses
  • Camera with external battery
  • Sun cream
  • Hat for the sun and for the cold
  • Hiking sticks
  • Mosquito repellent
  • Hiking shoes, trousers and jumpers

Departures & Price

Departure dates 2021 – 2022


group per person private per person
$ 390 per person $ 420 per person

Students: discount of $20, but you have to supply us with a copy of your ISIC card when you make the booking. Children up to 15 years of age will be charged as students, under the condition that you supply us with a copy of the passport at the time of booking time.

Note: A minimum of two people is required to run the trek, and there is a maximum of eight people per group.

Let us know if you want to know about hotels in Cusco city, we could help you

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You can contact us for any question by our WhatsApp: +51974238609, by our Chat, by email: or by  our Contact Form. Also you can fill our booking form:

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