Machu Picchu, without a doubt, deserves to be where it is. A 100% cultural destination for those travelers who love history, culture and adventure, And who has been named as one of the New Wonders of the World.
Machu Picchu is an ancient Inca city located at 2,490 meters (8,000 feet), commonly referred to as The Lost City of the Incas. It is one of the most famous and amazing ruins in the world and a necessary step when choosing Peru as a travel destination. Well, here is this mega Travel Guide to Machu Picchu for backpackers. With my best tips to take into account before, during and after your trip:
How to get to Machu Picchu?
For lovers of hiking there are several plans to ascend to Machu Picchu, but whichever option they choose. This should be taken months in advance and in any case they can not do it independently.
There is an option that is taking a bus that is worth about $ 5 to Ollantaytambo and then take another that brings them a little closer to reach Aguas Calientes on foot. It is a very long route. The beautiful natural landscapes, and who also want to save money from the train.
For this reason, and for those who want to take a more relaxed tour, the easiest option is to get to Cusco and from there they take the train to Aguas Calientes. Which is the town that lies at the foot of Macchu Picchu. The trip in the train takes 3.5 hours and it is a beautiful trip. Along the Urubamba River with the walls of the Canyon on each side.
Expedition Train: is the new service offered by this company. The interior of the vehicle has an Inca atmosphere and design to immerse passengers in the Inca world and with comfortable spaces.
Vistadome train: this train offers food facilities with snacks and typical drinks. It is one of the most attractive. As the entire upper part is fully equipped with windows and panoramic roofs to allow passengers to enjoy a completely open route and take beautiful photographs.
Hiram Bingham Luxury Train: this is a super luxury for those with much higher budgets. It is cataloged as one of the most comfortable and widest trains in the world. It has a lot of facilities and much more luxurious cars.
The value is USD 795 for the round trip ticket.
For its part, Inca Rail also offers three different train options. The difference is that their routes are offered only from Ollantaytambo to Machu Picchu and the same route back.
The vehicles offered by this Peruvian company are:
Machu Picchu Train: This is the cheapest option for travelers via train. This vehicle offers comfortable spaces with tables. And the facility to try different typical cold and hot drinks. It also has panoramic windows.
The value is USD 115 round trip (Ollantaytambo-Machu Picchu)
Inca Train Executive Class: A comfortable alternative that offers a complete ambience for travelers to rest and relax with background music, aromas and snacks and drinks made naturally.
The value is USD 135 round trip (Ollantaytambo-Machu Picchu)
Inca Train First Class: It is the most exclusive service of Inca Rail, with seats designed for the maximum comfort of passengers, music. And aromas to set the environment, drinks and snacks made naturally and a collection of books that travelers can enjoy during the travel.
How much do I have to pay to go to Machu Picchu?
First of all I recommend that you buy the train tickets with good time in advance, especially if you plan to travel in high season where the number of travelers increases considerably. Machu Picchu is a destination that attracts thousands of tourists every day and for this the Peruvian Government took some measures that limit access to this place.
One of them is that the availability of tickets was reduced to 2,500 people per day. So it is very likely that . If you leave the purchase of tickets for a day before in Cusco do not get availability both train and visit the ruins.
And beware, they are already handling 2 schedules for the entrance. A first shift from 06:00 to 12:00 in the morning. And a second shift from 12:00 to 17:30 in the afternoon. And of both, I prefer the first one. So that they are there very early and feel that mysticism that is felt when they open it.
The value of the ticket to go to Machu Picchu is 46 dollars for the case of foreigners who do not belong to any of the countries of the Andean Community. For which the value of the ticket is 64 soles. And in the case of students from the same community, ask what is even cheaper.
Machu Picchu 1 One of my recommendations for students traveling is to have the ISIC card that will give you a large number of discounts in hotels, hostels, restaurants. And even in the ticket to Machu Picchu. Watch my video talking about her if you did not know what I’m talking about.
What should I bring and how is the promotion?
At this point there are several important issues to address, since it is one of the most common questions of potential travelers of this magical destination. The first and very important is that they do not need a Visa for Peru. But they must carry a valid passport, above all they will be asked at the entrance to Machu Picchu.
The other thing is that due to the height of the site, you have to prevent yourself very well in terms of clothing so you can have a very good experience. For this I have several recommendations.
And again I tell you this from the experience, because the second time I went with Arturo Bullard. And Gaia Pascrell it did not stop raining. Here I share two photographs of that day. The same did not influence our smiles, before the place became a little more mystical and felt a very special energy.
And the issue of promotion will depend on each person. What I recommend, and that you can read in several portals, is to spend a full day in the city of Cusco to get the body to adapt to the height of the place and the next day if you dedicate to make the journey. But also, avoid eating heavy meals the night and the day before. That way they will have more resistance and the body will be a little more prepared to face the height. And all the symptoms that they could face due to this, and so not have to resort to having their friends take them to a horse.
And that’s it. The other thing that they must carry is a good camera to capture all those special moments and impressive places they will know. But also, a totally open heart to fall in love and the awake senses so they can record and collect all those memories for the rest of their lives.
What is this about Height Evil?
With this theme I tell them to be very careful and to try to be as prepared as possible to avoid this terrible evil that could play a trick on them.
So, as I recommend before, keep in mind to be quiet the day before. Acclimatizing to the height of the place. And in addition to that, consider the consumption of sweets so they have more calories. And even coca tea is another of the Very popular drinks that will help you prepare the body. It does not hurt to pack your good pills for altitude sickness that can easily get in any pharmacy.
How can I do with the accommodation?
Peru is a relatively economical country where there are options for all budgets. You can get hotels as the most expensive option, hostels or even. Through Couch surfing, a super network of travelers for the more adventurous.
The hotels have super-extensive ranges that can range from USD 15 to more than USD 250 or more. All this depends on the time of year and how agile they are to negotiate prices, since most times. And if they ask for it in a good way. You can see all available hotels and their prices from Booking.com Booking . com
It is an alternative that I highly recommend when traveling in a group. Because you can get very nice and organized sites at a very good price. In Ollantaytambo and Cusco you can get hostels from USD 8 to USD 25 or 30.
And if you can get a Lonely Planet travel guide it would be excellent. They are quite complete. Otherwise, for that we have these means. They do not always have to do things through an agency where most times they end up leaving more expensive.