High in the Andes of Peru is where Machu Picchu takes place. Traveling to this iconic and impressive Incan archaeological site is part of many traveler’s adventure list. But an adventure of this magnitude requires careful planning and precise Machu Picchu information. So, Cusco Peru Travel as travel specialists will share smart tips with you.
Our Machu Picchu information sheet will help you make the most of your Machu Picchu vacation. Are you ready to expertly navigate your way to one of the Wonders of the World?
All the Machu Picchu information
A famous and prominent South-American writer said: “Machu Picchu is a trip to the serenity of the soul, to the eternal fusion with the cosmos; where we feel our fragility. It is one of the greatest marvels of South America. A resting place of butterflies in the epicenter of the great circle of life. One more miracle.”
With this in mind, you can realize why thousands of visitors make the pilgrimage to visit this fascinating and spiritual archaeological site, right?
Being a popular destination, it is pretty important to make your arrangements well in advance. With the right Machu Picchu information, your journey will be an unforgettable one. But first thing’s first…
How to get to Machu Picchu
First off, Machu Picchu is only accessible from the city of Cusco, which you can only reach by air or bus.
There are a couple of popular ways to reach the Inca Sanctuary from Cusco e.g. the Inca trail. But the Machu Picchu tour from Cusco is often done by train, which is the easiest, quickest and most comfortable way to get to the Inca ruins. This scenic 3.5-hour trip will bring you along the Urubamba River in the beautiful Sacred Valley of the Incas.
Well, you won’t arrive exactly at the Machu Picchu Sanctuary, you will arrive in Aguas Calientes, the small town at the bottom of the valley below Machu Picchu. This place, also known as Machu Picchu Pueblo, is the access point to the Inca Citadel. Once there, you have two options: taking a bus or hike up to Machu Picchu’s entrance.
- Opening times: From 6 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
*Aguas Calientes is only reached by train. There is no road access.
** Two train companies are available from Cusco to Aguas Calientes: Peru Rail and Inca Rail.
Machu Picchu regulations
Regulations are an important part of the Machu Picchu information. You must know that the Peruvian Government has limited the number of visitors to the Inca Citadel to just 2500 per day. So, we recommend purchasing your entrance ticket in advance to avoid disappointment, especially during the high season (From June to September).
We know of some cases of travelers who arrived in Cusco in August hoping to obtain their tickets for the following days but, unfortunately, the entrance tickets were sold out. They were deeply sad and disappointed. Disappointed is putting it mildly…
Furthermore, tickets are no longer on sale at the entrance to the Sanctuary. You must purchase your tickets directly on the Machu Picchu’s official website, through a travel agency or an authorized ticket agent.
Real names and passport numbers are needed to buy the entrance tickets. Keep in mind that they cannot be changed once the ticket has been issued. They will be checked at the Machu Picchu’s entrance.
Cost and Fees
You may already have noticed that the Machu Picchu trip cost has several factors playing into the total cost. They vary widely depending on which experience you want to have and what is included in your tours.
If you are not in a rush, you can have the best hike experience of your life hiking the Inca Trail. It is a 26-mile trek over 4 days. This historical Inca Trail will immerse you in the world of the Incas and also take you through along ancient Inca ruins, narrow paths, valley views, and beautiful mountain scenery, ending at the majestic Machu Picchu
No doubt walking the Inca Trail will be an unforgettable, magical and mystical experience. But how much does this experience cost? Approximately US$500-600 per person, depending on the tour duration and group size. Take into consideration that treks with large groups cost less than private and smaller tours.
Contrarily, if you only have a few days to travel, the train journey will be perfect for you. As we mentioned before, the railway line follows the Urubamba’s riverbed. You will see the typical vegetation of the Peruvian upper jungle.
*Every year in February, the Inca Trail is closed for maintenance works.
With an extension of over 35,000 hectares, the Lost City of the Incas counts with approximately 200 buildings, each with a specific purpose. Besides, it is divided into two areas: The urban section, which served for administrative purposes; and the agricultural area which is made up of terraces and channels that provided irrigation.
Furthermore, some of the prominent Inca structures that will astonish you when climbing Machu Picchu are The Sun Gate or Intipunku, the Royalty Area, The Princesses Zone, The Intihuatana, The Sacred Plaza and Main Temple, just to mention a few. Inca energy will flow all around.
When to go to Machu Picchu
It depends on the experience you want to have, the route you plan to take and if you prefer a bit of solitude or meet with other travelers.
Machu Picchu is located in a subtropical zone which makes it an all-year-round destination. Its temperatures range from 8° to 22°C, and the highest temperatures reach 27°C.
From May to September, there is less likelihood of rain. So, these are the most popular months to visit the Sanctuary but also the busiest. January and February are the wettest months, in other words, the least popular. Well, choose which month is suitable for your journey!
Besides, Machu Picchu is located at 2,430 meters above sea level. Take some time to acclimate to the altitude when reaching Cusco. The longer you spend here, the more you will be able to enjoy your Machu Picchu experience.
What to pack and not pack
- Items to pack: Passport and Machu Picchu entrance (printed). Money for your passport stamp (a visit to Machu Picchu is not complete without the stamp!). Water and some snacks. Appropriate footwear, camera, sunscreen and waterproof clothing (Andean weather is unpredictable).
- Keep these things off: Tripods, walking sticks and large umbrellas. Professional cameras need permission (you must pay about $300).
Finally, we can say that your journey will be an experience that you will never forget…
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.