Hello! I apologize for getting a little bit behind on posting. Every day of this trip has been exciting and new, and I really want to take my time on these posts to share my experiences with you. Two of my friends, Olivia and Maggie, have joined me on this trip, so the fun and adventures are threefold now! A few days ago we visited one of the Seven Wonders of the World, Machu Picchu. It truly is a wonder, and one that I would highly recommend visiting if you have not.
Machu Picchu was built by the Incas, one of the largest empires the Americas has ever seen. The Inca empire ruled much of South America, from Ecuador to Chile, in the 1400s and 1500s. From Cusco, the capital city in Peru, the Incas had several routes to get to their sacred city, Machu Picchu.
Today, we also have several ways to get to Machu Picchu:
1. By train – This is the easiest and most comfortable way to arrive to Aguas Calientes, right outside of Machu Picchu. You can then take a bus to the entrance.
2. Inca trail (4 days) – This several day hike must be booked almost a year in advance due to permit availability. This trek follows one of the original trails the Incas took to get to Machu Picchu.
3. Salkantay Trek (4-5 days) – This is one of the most difficult but beautiful ways to get to Machu Picchu. On this hike you’ll experience everything from the Andes Mountains to the Peruvian jungle.
4. Inca Jungle – This adventure trek to Machu Picchu not only includes hiking but also extreme sports like zip lining and white water rafting.
5. Short Inca Trail (2 days) – This hike includes the last part of the full Inca Trail. Many people do this one when the full Inca Trail permits are sold out. However, this hike is perfect for saving time. You still end the hike and enter Machu Picchu at the Sun Gate where you can get your first glimpse of the sacred city as the Incas did when they made that same trek before spending the night in the little town of Aguas Calientes outside of Machu Picchu.
This was my second time to Machu Picchu, and we did the Short Inca Trail. On my previous trip to Machu Picchu we took the train, which was a wonderful experience, but this time as three fairly fit girls in their early 20s there was no excuse not to do the hike!
Before the hike we spent several days in Cusco acclimating to the altitude before our hike. I would like to take this time to give a shoutout to Coca tea for treating our altitude sickness and making this adventure possible. Also, Coca tea, if you see this and would like to sponsor me email is a great way to get in contact with me!
While in Cusco we went on other adventures such as our hike to Humantay Lake. The altitude at the top of this hike was 4,250 meters, or 13,779 feet. The hike was only an hour and a half up and 40 minutes back down. The altitude sickness was well worth it, as the lake was spectacular!
Until Next Time,