For those with limited time on their hands, but an insatiable urge to visit Macchu picchu, one of the New Seven Wonders of the World, then this trip is for you. It starts and ends in the city of Cusco, the historical centre of the Inca Empire and gateway to all the major Inca sites of the Peruvian Andes, and includes one night in a hand-picked, mid-range (3-star) quality hotel in Aguas Calientes, with a personal guide throughout.
Early morning pick-up from hotel in Cusco by Fauna Forever tour leader, followed by guided transfer in private vehicle to Ollantaytambo (1½ hrs). Here we will catch the train to Aguas Calientes, the bustling village located at the foot of Machu picchu, a relaxing 2-hr journey down the Sacred Valley through rural villages, rocky canyons and thick stands of tropical vegetation – one of the top train journeys in the world. On arrival in Aguas Calientes we will be met by a representative of the hotel, who will assist us with your bags. After checking in to the hotel, we will head out to explore the local area, including lunch at an orchid garden, wildlife watching among clear-water Andean waterfalls, a chance for a dip in a hot spring or in a refreshingly cold waterfall (depending on the weather). We will have dinner back at the hotel at 8 pm, and then turn in for the night - as we will have an early start the next day. Wifi is available at the hotel, and hotel staff will also prepare us a box-lunch to eat up at the ruins tomorrow. Night at hotel in Aguas Calientes.
We will be given a wake-up call around 5 am. We will meet in restaurant area of the hotel, eat a healthy, organic breakfast, before grabbing our box-lunch and catching the bus up the windy road to the entrance gate of Machu picchu, a journey of 30 mins. At the gates to the citadel we will show our entry tickets before passing through and into the ruined city itself. With the help of our knowledgeable guide we will take a unique route through the complex, learning as we go about the Inca people, their culture and their close relationship with nature, and how and why they built this amazing place. If you have opted for the steep hike up to the very top of the iconic Wayna picchu Mountain, always at the centre of picture-postcards of Machu picchu, then you (and a small privileged group) will begin this at around 9 am. At this point we will have some time on our own to appreciate and contemplate the views across the ruins to the cloud-forest-clad mountains beyond the Vilcanota River. We will all reconvene for lunch around 1 pm, and at 2 pm we will head back down to Aguas Calientes. Here we will have some free time to do some souvenir shopping before collecting our bags from the hotel and heading down to the train station to catch our panoramic-windowed carriage for the slow but picturesque journey back to Ollantaytambo and Cusco. On arrival at your hotel in Cusco our services end.
| 1 person
| 2 people
| 3 to 5 people
| Single supplement
The price includes all transport (private cars and trains), accommodation in Aguas Calientes for one night (3 star hotel), all meals (except breakfast on day 1 and dinner on day 2), accompanying tour leader or guide, and entry tickets to Machu picchu.
The price does not include accommodation in Cusco, alcoholic beverages, entry to Wayna picchu (add US$20), or tips.
Plan for all types of weather on route and at Machu picchu itself. That means it could be gloriously sunny one minute, foggy the next, and even raining half an hour after that. Fog and rain is more common during the rainy season (Nov to Apr).
Bring some Soles change with you to pay for the toilet or rest room located near the entrance to Machu picchu itself.
There is a nice, if expensive, restaurant near the entrance in case your box lunch is insufficient. Bring cash Soles to buy food and extra drinks here.
Once your guide has given you her bespoke tour of the ruins, she will give you several hours to wander freely and explore around the site. We recommend you bring the following guide book to get the most from this free time: The Machu Picchu Guidebook: A Self-Guided Tour, by Ruth Wright & Alfredo Valencia
Do bring insect repellent, or wear long trousers / pants to keep the sometimes irritating flies at bay.
Although your guide will remind you in Cusco before setting out, don't forget to bring your passport, as you'll need to show it at the entrance to the ruins.