Today we woke up in Aguas Calientes at El Mapi Inkaterra. It was wet outside, because it had rained the previous night. We awoke up at 4:40 am to try and see the sunrise over Machu Picchu. We quickly ate breakfast and went to the bus stop to wait for the first bus for Machu Picchu. The line was very long, as people were also trying to get tickets to Wayna Picchu. We finally got on the bus and made it to Machu Picchu. It was supper foggy and very mystical. We walked up to the watch house and sat on a rock to watch as the fog rolled in and out.
Unfortunately, the fog covered the sunrise, but it was still a very beautiful site.
Mom even made the climb to the watch house with me! Eventually, it started raining, so we started back down the mountain. Thank goodness we had the rain pants and jackets.
After lunch we headed out to walk around Aguas Calientas a bit before getting back on the train to return to Cusco. While the train ride is beautiful, it is a bit crazy. On the way to Aguas Calientes there were people on the train trying to sell us books, and on the way back they were trying to sell us alpaca sweaters and scarves. The train took us to Ollantaytambo, where we met a guide who transferred us to a car for the drive back to Cusco. The drive was nice but very long. Since the ride lasted into the night, we were able to see the sunset over the mountains.
Hotel : Casa Andina, Classic Plaza
Reflections and tips :
- Be prepared for rain : Machu Picchu is in the wetter part of Peru. At any given time it will be foggy and / or rainy. Assure that you pack for wet weather, including rain jackets and pants, umbrellas, and waterproof shoes. As you are planning your trip, make sure to plan closer to the dry season. During the rainy season (October – April), the roads can get washed out, preventing people from going up to Machu Picchu.
- Plan ahead if you want to climb Wayna Picchu : Tickets to Wayna Picchu are very limited and sell out early in the morning. If you plan to climb this second mountain, you will need to be at the bus stop before dawn. As a result, you will need to plan a minimum of two days at Machu Picchu. Additionally, the hike is not for everyone. You will need to make sure that you are physically fit to make the climb in a high altitude and possibly wet environment.