A trip to Machu Picchu is a must while visiting Peru. These majestic Incan ruins nestling among the clouds on their high mountain perch is famous all around the world. ‘Rediscovered’ in 1911 by Hiram Bingham, Machu Picchu has still not given up all its secrets and archaeologists ...
“We are so pleased we used Trafalgar to tour Peru. Our itinerary during this 12 day tour was quite full. Thanks to Trafalgar's organization and experience, everything went wonderfully. We are seasoned travellers (this was our 5th tour with Trafalgar ! ) who like to experience as much as possible when touring. We could not have seen and enjoyed so much during our 12 days in Peru without Trafalgar's services. Thanks Trafalgar, we look forward to our next adventure with your wonderful tour directors !”
“The itinerary was excellent. I appreciated the schedule which had us travel at times which allowed the optimum part of the day for the sites. The addition of the lecture by Peter Frost was a high point. However, for a tour that is as physically demanding as this one, the tour group (39) was too large. The feel and pace of the tour improved greatly after some, who had booked a shorter tour, departed and the size of the group was reduced to 20.”
“There was great diversity in the activities. We learned a great deal from our excellent local guides, but it never went beyond what a person taking such a trip would want to hear. My highlight was the Nazca Lines. Some bus rides were long, but Barbara broke them up with interesting stops or information about what we were to see. Suggestions: fewer stop on the way to the hotel in the Sacred Valley; a list of first and last names provided on the first day. This is important for single travelers.”
“Lots of variety, good insights on Peru's culture and people. Trip was very fast pace and we would have liked a few early stops at the beautiful hotels we stayed at.
We forgot to give our email address for the other clients of the trip. Can we receive a copy of the others in the group so we can exchange pictures. firstname.lastname@example.org”
“Was everything I expected. Although my wife developed a foot problem just prior to going on the trip we were never made to feel we were slowing anyone down. The only issue we had was with the lighting in the hotels. They were top of the line five star but overall room and bathroom lighting could have been better.”
A trip to Machu Picchu is a must while visiting Peru. These majestic Incan ruins nestling among the clouds on their high mountain perch is famous all around the world. ‘Rediscovered’ in 1911 by Hiram Bingham, Machu Picchu has still not given up all its secrets and archaeologists are divided over its original signification and use. This mysterious site high in the Andes leaves few visitors unmoved and can be reached via famous trekking routes in Peru like the Inca trail, Salkantay trek and Choquequirao Trek.
Arrive at Machu Picchu on foot after hiking the four-day Inca Trail.
Alternatively, base yourself at Aguas Calientes (Machu Picchu Pueblo), arriving after a spectacular train journey through the mountains.
Travel up to the ruins in time to catch the sunrise at Machu Picchu.
Look out for highlights among the ruins themselves including the Temple of the Sun, the Room of the Three Windows, Intihuatana and the Sun Gate.
Climb Huayna Picchu, the peak at the northern end of the ruins, for views of Machu Picchu.
Visitors to Machu Picchu are limited to 2,500 per day so book ahead to avoid disappointment, especially at the busiest times.
Only 400 people are permitted to climb Huayna Picchu per day so you will need to arrive early. This means queuing for the first bus from Aguas Calientes before 4.30am.
Follow the vertiginous trail down from Huayna Picchu to see the less-visited Temple of the Moon.
If you are unable to obtain a ticket for Huayna Picchu, climb Cerro Picchu to the south instead. You will be rewarded by great views and fewer crowds.
If you want to avoid the overcrowded Inca Trail, you can take on the alternative Salkantay Trek which offers views of Machu Picchu from above before arriving at Aguas Calientes for a visit of the ruins the next day.
Take insect repellent and be prepared for both sun and rain even in dry season.
Machu Picchu has seasonal weather so please do check up on the best time to visit Machu Picchu before planning your tour. If you’re still hunting for more things to do and places to explore in Peru, do check out our Peru Travel Guide for more information.