How to travel to Machu Picchu
The journey to Machu Picchu is not so complicated, you just have to follow a series of steps to make your trip the best way and so you can make the most of this incredible place.
It is important that you take into account a series of aspects that will help you not to waste your time and not get caught at night on the road. Besides, they are of great relevance for you to have an idea of what awaits you when you arrive at the site. Read to the end!
Buy the tickets to Machu Picchu
One of the first things to do on a trip to Machu Picchu, is to carry out the purchase of tickets.
The availability will depend on whether you travel in high or low season, and this is because per day are only on sale about 400 tickets to climb Huayna Picchu, for example.
This mountain is the typical one behind all the pictures taken in Machu Picchu, so it is considered as a mandatory stop on this trip.
But it is relevant that you have in mind that perhaps, it is not suitable for all people because of the effort to climb the steps.
However, if you only want to enter Machu Picchu there is no problem if you buy the tickets a few days in advance or the same day, since there are about 2,500 tickets per day.
These tickets can be purchased through the website www.machupicchu.gob.pe and in which you will get better prices than in other places or websites, you can also buy them in the official offices located in Cuzco.
Direct transportation to the hydroelectric plant
At present, you can find a direct route that goes from Cuzco to the hydroelectric plant.
You must take into account that it is not a comfortable trip, since it is somewhat long and its duration time is 6 to 7 hours. In addition, you may encounter defective sections of the track. The transport usually leaves at 7:00 or 7:30 in the morning.
Walking to Aguas Calientes
When you arrive at the hydroelectric plant you will have to walk about 10 kilometers following the train tracks until you reach the town of Aguas Calientes: depending on your pace it could take you 3 hours walking.
In this town you will spend the night and the next day you can go to Machu Picchu early in the morning, so the day before you should stay in Aguas Calientes.
Climbing Machu Picchu
On this great day, you should eak up at 4:00 a.m. so that you can have some breakfast and start walking at 4:30 a.m. The hike takes about half an hour to get to Machu Picchu. The hike lasts about half an hour until you reach a bridge where the first checkpoint is located.
Passage over this bridge is open from 5:00 am: people who arrive before that time, form a queue in which authorized persons will check the entrance to the place.
After passing the bridge, the tour begins, which lasts approximately 1 hour through the stairs.
Visit the ruins
At an altitude of 2,490 meters above sea level, you will arrive at the ruins and get the entrance, a restaurant, restrooms and a backpack guard.
The ruins open at 6:00 am, but before its opening time, the people who arrive are forming a queue to enter.
It is important to add that, before entering these ruins, you will see many guides trying to sell their services, which is interesting to learn about the site and its history.
You can spend a maximum of 4 hours in the ruins and once you leave them, you cannot go back in (as you could do before).
Climb Huayna Picchu
If you were able to buy your entrance ticket to this place and it is around 10:00 am after the guided tour of the ruins, you can stop for a while to take some panoramic pictures.
A few minutes before 10 am, go to the entrance of this mountain which is located just opposite the entrance of Machu Picchu. Here you must wait in line, show your ticket again and check in.
Then, you can climb to the top which is approximately 2,667 meters, where you must spend an hour and a half climbing up steps.
But, when you reach the top, you can enjoy an incredible view of Machu Picchu and the surrounding mountains.
Return to the hydroelectric plant
After you have completed your tour of Machu Picchu, you will have to walk back to the hydroelectric plant for about 3 hours. When you arrive at the hydroelectric plant, you can take a collective cab to Santa Teresa.
In Santa Teresa you can stay in one of their hotels to spend the night and the next day you can return to Cuzco.
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