Viagens Machu Picchu

Dare to uncover the secrets of the Inca culture and explore Machu Picchu in-depth. Peru’s most famous civilization continues to amaze us with its authentic engineering, architecture, and culture. Therefore, the famous Inca Citadel is considered one of the new seven wonders of the world due to its impressive structure and the riddles it left behind. 

The Peruvian wonder of the world receives over 1.5 million tourists per year, making it the most visited attraction in South America. However, it is known so little of this ancient structure that many theories have been raised since Hiram Bingham unveiled it to the world in 1911.

It is believed that Machu Picchu was abandoned 100 years after its construction. Although there’s no evidence that the Spanish conquerors are related to the cause, some studies indicate that the Incas left this unique location due to the smallpox epidemic, but this is still a mystery.

Historians all over the world theorize that Machu Picchu was a ceremony center, and others believe that it served as a royal state. Although the main purpose of Machu Picchu remains uncertain, the most accurate seems to point to the Inca Citadel as a religious center due to its proximity to mountains and other features that the Incas considered Sacred.

Machu Picchu was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1983, and it wasn’t until 2007 that it was granted recognition as one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. This famous historic sanctuary has maintained its ancient structure nearly untouched until the current date. 

Weather in Machu Picchu

Machu Picchu is located in the limit of the Peruvian high jungle and the Andes, at 2,430 meters above sea level. The temperatures in this region range between 12°C and 24°C, it has predominant warm and humid weather throughout the day and its colder during the night. The climate condition in Machu Picchu is characterized by two primary seasons:

- Rainy Season: It takes place between December and April, being these the rainiest months of the year. However, the rainy season is expected to transition with mild precipitations between October and December.

- Dry Season: It is considered the coldest season of the year. This period starts in May and ends in September. Bright and sunny days are expected throughout this season. 

It is worth mentioning that the weather conditions in this region may change drastically. Therefore, we encourage you to know everything about it and prepare the perfect Machu Picchu packing list before venturing out to this wonder.

How to Get to Machu Picchu?

Depending on the type of experience you’d like to have, there are different ways to get to Machu Picchu. From the most adventurous treks to the most in-demand transpor options, here are some recommendations to help you plan your itinerary:

1. Treks to Machu Picchu:
Many trails take you to this enigmatic wonder of the world. Here we’ll mention the most popular trekking activities to reach Machu Picchu: 

The famous Inca Trail has been the Nº 1 option to many travelers that wish to have an authentic experience through the original trail used by the Incas. However, the Inca Trail must be booked in advance due to the limited availability of spaces. 

- Another authentic way to get to Machu Picchu is through the Salkantay trek, a trail that takes you through the Andean highlands, reaching up to 4,650 meters above sea level. An unmissable adventure for those looking to immerse themselves in nature and adrenaline. 

For those looking for adventure sports and to be in touch with the exuberant nature of the Peruvian high jungle, the Inca Jungle Trek is the right choice. In this adventure, you’ll bike downhill through the rainforest, lose yourself in adrenaline with the white water rafting activity, and finally make your way through the jungle on a zip-line ride. 

2. Trains to Machu Picchu
Train rides are the most in-demand ways to get to Machu Picchu, not only for the transport-wise efficiency but because it goes across the Peruvian highlands, transitioning to the impressive rainforest and its imposing mountains. Likewise, there are different types of trains and routes to reach the famous Machu Picchu town.

- Expedition Train: This tourist-class carriage is one of the most popular train services to get to Machu Picchu. It departs from Cusco, Ollantaytambo and Aguas Calientes train stations.
- Vistadome Train: For those looking to experience the exuberant nature of the Cusco countryside, this panoramic train offers floor-to-ceiling windows, on-board service, and typical dance shows. It departs from Cusco, Urubamba, Ollantaytambo, and Aguas Calientes train stations.
- Sacred Valley Train: This is one of the most luxurious train rides to get to Machu Picchu. Travel through time in these 1920s-style wagons and experience the best of the Urubamba valley and the Peruvian high jungle.

3. Bus Ride to Machu Picchu
While mentioning the different ways to get to Machu Picchu, we cannot leave bus rides behind. Although it is currently impossible to reach Aguas Calientes by bus, you can easily get to the nearest town to later continue on a 3-hour walk until this famous town. It’s worth mentioning that the bus ride takes about 6 hours from Cusco to Hidroelectrica and it’s not advisable to take this transport option during the rainy season.

Planning a trip to Machu Picchu couldn’t be easier if you have the right information, which is why we recommend you to know what are the current conditions to visit this wonder of the world while you’re here.

See below the tourist spots to be visited in Machu Picchu.

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Machu Picchu Travel Guide: 2021 Update

Temple of the Sun

This impressive structure is recognized for its carved stone walls. Due to this authentic curvature and architectural style resembling the ones found in the Qoricancha temple, Hiram Bigham deduced that this could be a Sun cult temple. 

The Temple of the Sun comprehends three rear windows, where two of them allow the sunlight entrance during the winter and summer solstices, and the third has several perforations around its frame that probably held precious stones, this last window is called the ’Snake’s Window.’

This structure was built on top of a natural rock cave that was probably used as a tomb or mausoleum. Some historians theorize that this was the Inca Emperor Pachacutec’s burial place.

Machu Picchu Travel Guide: 2021 Update

Intihuatana

This mysterious carved rock is located in the highest point of Machu Picchu. It is believed that on the winter solstice, the shortest day of the year, the Incas reunited here to implore not to be abandoned by the Sun God, Inti, as well as performing sacrifices and offerings to this deity.

The Incas had a great astronomical and geographic knowledge, which is also reflected in this sacred monument since the protruding part is intended to match the sunlight in every season of the year. It is also considered that this is some kind of solar watch. 

Machu Picchu Travel Guide: 2021 Update

The Condor Temple

It is located in the urban area of the Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu. Its name was given due to the similarities of the constructions with the imposing bird of the Andes. This structure seems to be used as a punishment cell since a dungeon was found in its interior. 

The Andean Condor was a sacred bird to the Incas, for that reason, it is believed that sacrifices were made in this location to honor it by maybe offering the corpses of their enemies after being tortured. 

Machu Picchu Travel Guide: 2021 Update

Huayna Picchu

It’s located in front of the Inca Sanctuary Machu Picchu and has an altitude of 2,667 meters above sea level. This is the background mountain to every classic picture of Machu Picchu. This place was used as a vigilance center during Inca times. 

To get to the summit you can take the lower left path going through very steep stone stairs. From the top, you can visualize the impressive Inca citadel and the Andean mountain range. Although the trek is considered to have a high level of difficulty, once you reach the top, you’ll realize all that hard work has been paid off.

The walk up to Huayna Picchu takes about 70 min or less, according to your physical condition. It is worth mentioning that this is an additional activity in the archeological complex, therefore, you must purchase a separate entrance ticket to experience this trail.

However, tickets are limited to 400 entrances per day, which means you must purchase them at least 3-5 months in advance.

Machu Picchu Travel Guide: 2021 Update

The Machu Picchu Museum

Also known as the Manuel Chávez Ballón Museum, it is located one kilometer away from Machu Picchu. It was built in the 1960s, with the purpose to exhibit all the cultural details of the Inca Citadel.

The museum has a collection of archeological pieces that were found in the archeological site. Some of these pieces were sent to Yale University to be studied and then later returned to Peru.

Besides, this attraction comprehends beautiful botanical gardens with an exhibition of the local flora of the region, where they have a distinctive collection of orchids.

Machu Picchu Travel Guide: 2021 Update

Belmond Sanctuary Lodge 

It is the only hotel located at the  Machu Picchu entrance, belonging to the famous Belmond hotel chain. This luxurious lodging comprehends 31 suites and rooms, with eco-friendly features and details that echo the energy of the Inca citadel.

The Belmond Sanctuary Lodge offers the best fusion of Peruvian gastronomy with international cuisine on a buffet modality. It is worth mentioning that it’s not necessary to stay in the hotel to enjoy their authentic dishes.

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