When you are preparing the travel schemes to get from Lima to Machu Picchu or in the Cusco to Machu Picchu route, doubts or confusion can often arise. Especially when you find out about the options to climb Machu Picchu. And this happens since the majestic Citadel of Machu Picchu has two spectacular mountains that are Huayna Picchu and Machu Picchu Mountain. And from the top of any of them, the images come out amazing. Both mountains have differences between them and similarly have limited access. Therefore, together with Cusco Peru Travel, we have prepared a small article where we will delve into this topic. In this article, you will discover how to face your choice and the different ways of climbing Machu Picchu.

Everything you need to know when climbing Machu Picchu  

THE BEST TIME FOR CLIMBING MACHU PICCHU 

climbing machu picchu citadel
The citadel of Machu Picchu, with its mountains, is accessible throughout the year, but during the rainy season (mid-November to April), the trail for climbing Machu Picchu becomes slippery and more exhausting to walk. The entire region of Machu Picchu is surrounded by a tropical forest and, therefore, its climate has average daily temperatures of 18 ° C / 64 ° F. The dry season (from May to mid-November), for most of the visitors, is considered the best time to visit Machu Picchu. However, humidity is always felt at 40% when the weather is without precipitation and at 60% when it is raining. Anyway, keep in mind that the high season is from May to August (you will see several tourists) and September to mid-November is usually less crowded. 

HUAYNA PICCHU OR “YOUNG MOUNTAIN”

climbing machu picchu huayna picchu view

Height 2 693 meters above sea level
Quantity of people per day400 limited and divided into two groups
ScheduleGroup I: from 7:00 am to 8:00 am
Group II: from 10:00 am to 11:00 am
Climbing timeapproximately 2 hours (go and return)
Difficulty levelHigh

Huayna Picchu is the mountain you can see in many of the Machu Picchu Citadel postcards and it is located to the north of it. This mountain is the most visited since it contains valuable archaeological Incas remains and also due to its proximity to the Historical Sanctuary. On the path to the top, its steep and narrow irregular stone steps stand out, amid dense vegetation, which defies gravity, being the reason why this climbing Machu Picchu is quite hard but it rewards you in the end. The Huayna Picchu mountain is one of the best places to visit in Machu Picchu

MACHU PICCHU MOUNTAIN OR “OLD MOUNTAIN” 

climbing machu picchu view from the mountain

Height 3 082 meters above sea level
Quantity of people per day800 limited and divided into two groups
ScheduleGroup I: from 7:00 am to 8:00 am
Group II: from 9:00 am to 10:00 am
Climbing timeapproximately 3 hours (go and return)
Difficulty levelHigh medium

Machu Picchu Mountain is located in the southern Machu Picchu Citadel, in the high mountain range that surrounds it, and on the opposite side of Huayna Picchu. This mountain is not as popular as Huayna Picchu, but it has a less demanding and wider trail, which makes it more accessible for visitors despite the arrival to the top that lasts more time. On this climbing Machu Picchu route, you will find marvelous diversity in the great wild flora and fauna of the place. This mountain also offers a completely different perspective to Huayna Picchu resulting in amazing panoramic postcards of the valley that houses Machu Picchu Citadel.

THE MACHU PICCHU MOUNTAIN ENTRY POINT

climbing machu picchu entrance
For climbing Machu Picchu, the Old Mountain to be exact, tourists must go to the Control Cabin which is located within the Machu Picchu Citadel. And to reach this point, they do it following the Guard House path. In fact, from the Sanctuary main entrance, wooden signs lead this hike beginning, which takes the same route of the climb to Sun Gate (Inti Punku). After a few minutes, tourists continue on a road that goes up through agricultural terraces to then, while taking the trail that directs them, in about 15 minutes, finally get in the Control Cabin. There, tourists need to show their passports or ids, tickets, and sign a guestbook. Note the total duration to arrive at the entry point of the adventure is 30 minutes approximately. Within the different luxury Peru tours, you will have access to this mountain as well as other hiking routes.

SOME TIPS TO CONSIDER

climbing machu picchu lost city of the incas

  • For climbing Machu Picchu, it is very important to acclimatize to the altitude. 1-2 days will be enough!
  • Don’t forget there are limited permits for climbing Huayna Picchu and Machu Picchu Mountain, make your reservations well in advance since permits get sold out fast. This is one of the things about Machu Picchu to take into account. 
  • When purchasing your ticket, request the option of climbing Machu Picchu so you can have the correct ticket which considers the perfect combination you like.
  • Be punctual or arrive even earlier than the schedules you have on your entrance ticket, especially when it is high season. Otherwise, you won’t have enough time to enjoy your expected journey.
  • Before starting climbing Machu Picchu, one of the mountains, follow the proper signs of the trail that takes you to the entry point. If you get confused, ask your guide, he/she will help you.
  • Carry with you bottles of water and snacks at the moment to enter the Sanctuary. Especially if you are traveling to Machu Picchu with kids. Once inside, nobody sells anything, it isn’t allowed. Start the adventure and get the experience of a lifetime! 

WHAT TO BRING DURING YOUR JOURNEY

  • Current Passport or ID (mandatory)
  • Hat/cap, sunglasses, sunblock, and insect repellent
  • Raincoat/rain poncho
  • Hiking shoes
  • Hiking pants
  • T-shirts
  • Long-sleeve shirts
  • Jackets and/or windbreakers
  • Walking sticks
  • Camera

“IF YOU THINK ADVENTURE IS DANGEROUS, TRY ROUTINE, IT’S LETHAL.”

To conclude, when you find yourself climbing Machu Picchu, you will notice that there are numerous alternatives to enjoy this magical place. Especially if you are looking to enjoy the different perspectives of the Inca citadel. We hope together with the experts of Cusco Peru Travel to have been of help. Remember that you can consult with our qualified advisors to help you fulfill the trip of your dreams.

Peru has many wonders waiting for you to be discovered. Here in Cusco Peru Travel, our speciality is to make your trip an outstanding experience, fill-in this form and let your tailor-made luxury Peru vacation begin.

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