Machu Picchu

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Top 5 things visitors often miss at Machu Picchu

Peru's Machu Picchu is the scenic site of many secrets. In fact, nobody really knows what the Incans even used it for! Here are a few tips to help you make the most of the mystery.

  • The hiking trails

    1. The hiking trails

    You can walk up to Machu Picchu by foot if you're fit enough. The strenuous climb reveals numerous overgrown trails, many of which are now being opened for public tours.

  • The earthquake-resistant bricks

    2. The earthquake-resistant bricks

    Peru is prone to earthquakes and the building blocks of Machu Picchu have been cut precisely enough to simply shake off the threat of tremors!

  • The underground engineering

    3. The underground engineering

    An estimated 60% of Machu Picchu's construction is underground. Its deep foundations and efficient drainage systems never fail to impress historians and archaeologists alike.

  • The secret temple

    4. The secret temple

    Machu Picchu may have been a site of religious pilgrimage. Supporting this is the Temple of the Moon – a shrine beautifully carved into a cave on the far side of Huayna Picchu.

  • The excellent but poorly located museum

    5. The excellent but poorly located museum

    Want more insight but can't stand crowded museums? You're in luck! Few tourists follow the long dirt track to the Museo de Sitio Manuel Chávez Ballón, but they really should!

Planning Your Visit

  • When to go?

    The best time to visit is as early as possible if you want to see the site from Huayna Picchu – the highest peak of the two, and the one offering the most breathtaking views. Only 400 visitors are allowed up each day, so queues begin forming long before dawn!
    It's also worth noting that although rainy season is officially from October to April, the sky can burst at any moment!

  • How to get there?

    The PeruRail train from Cusco takes 3½ hours from Cusco to Aguas Calientes, the town at the foot of Machu Picchu (recently renamed Machu Picchu Pueblo, both town names are used). Train tickets sell out quickly so make sure you book with weeks to spare! The hike from Aguas Calientes takes about 90 minutes, otherwise expect long waits for the busy buses, despite the fact that they depart every few minutes from 5:30AM onwards.

Good to know

  • When should I visit?
    Open from 6:00AM to 5:00PM daily.
  • Is it expensive?
    Tickets cost 126 soles, which is about $45.
  • Will I need a guide?
    Absolutely! Might be worth it to check out our best-selling tours.
  • How to get there
    Machu Picchu can be reached from Aguas Calientes by foot or bus.
  • Additional information

    • Get there early to make sure you can go up!

    • The hike is strenuous and rainstorms are frequent.

Other Sightseeing Options in Machu Picchu

Want to discover all there is to do in Machu Picchu? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Machu Picchu

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 1,102 reviews

Super easy experience, from start to finish. The agency took care of our tickets for both the entrance and the bus to MP, and the guide met us at hotel in the morning and went with us on the bus, it was all laid out perfect for us, even though we booked short term (I think 4 days prior to arrival, as we were unsure if we were going to be able to go w/the ever changing covid restrictions). Everything can be done electronically (tickets), either through email or Whatsapp, and communication from the agency was great, the guide was awesome!

We picked up the train tickets at Ollantaytambo and were able to rescedule the return trip; got a privat guide at Aguas Calientes (we also speak the language.). In the morning we left our travel bag at the Hotel, but there are also lockers at the Park Entrance. The size of back packs does not seem to be stricly enforced. Having all the vouchers before the trip makes the experience so much smoother. The town does a great job of getting the visitors up and down the mountain.

We had a fantastic day today on our Machu Picchu trip. The bus driver picked us up at a hotel on time. He was very friendly. Willka Travel had everything ready to go for us, including all of our bus, train, and Machu Picchu tickets. The guide at Machu Picchu was was fantastic. He spoke perfect English and was very knowledgeable of the history there. Our return trip was just as good. I highly recommend this trip.

Our private guide Henry was GREAT. So informative. If you only are going here once then get a private guide. Money well spent.

Must see one of kind location. Whole deal the train car ride and the scenic. The process of ticket exchange was easy as well.