What Is The Best Time To Visit Machu Picchu & Where Is Machu Picchu Located?
Best Time To Visit Machu Picchu
What is the best time to visit Machu Picchu? Most people rarely take enough time to understand the best time to visit Machu Picchu. This region is a city on the mountain that experiences dynamic climatic conditions. There is no way you will understand the best touring season unless you have a clue of the route to follow and the challenges to expect along the way. The time you visit determines the kind of experience you will receive from Machu Picchu. This article attempts to guide you in scheduling your Machu Picchu to maximize your experience.
Where Is Machu Picchu Located?
Do you know where is Machu Picchu located? The location of Machu Picchu is approximately 112.5 kilometers on the northeastern part of Cusco city. The area lies within the Machu Picchu National Park which makes up the largest portion of the Urubamba province in the department of Cusco. The area has a surrounding of huge mountains and a big forest.
The agricultural area, urban region and surface of the archeological park cover close to 35592 hectares. Its location is on the eastern slopes of the high Cordillera mountain range that borders the Urubamba and Apurimac rivers.
The location of Machu Picchu is 13 degrees, 9’14” south latitude and 72 degrees, 32’44” W, of the great Urubamba province. Machu Picchu has two major mountains namely the Huayna Picchu and Machu Picchu, which are part of the larger orographic Vilcabamba batholith formation. They are in the Peruvian Andes’s central cordillera. Their location is on the left bank side of the Urubamba Canyon that the older people refer to as the Quebrada de Picchu.
We have the Vilcanota Urubamba River at the bottom of the hills. The Inca archeological site is halfway between the two mountain tops approximately 2438 meters over the sea level and 450 meters above the valley. The floor has an approximate area of 200 meters wide, 530 meters long with 172 buildings in the urban area. Machu Picchu is biogeographically on the Peruvian Yungas ecoregion.
The Machu Picchu Historical Sanctuary covers an area of approximately 32592 hectares. We have a large number of biologically endangered species that the sanctuary protects. The sanctuary has two different ecoregions and ten living areas within it. The most important among these are the mountain brow, cloud forest, tall dwarf forests, and the ecologically Andean grass. This immense habitat diversity brings out an unusual fauna and floro.
The climate is usually mild throughout the year, dry between April and October, and wet between the months of November to March. The best time to visit Machu Picchu is during the warm season. The annual minimum temperature ranges between 8 to 11.2 degrees Celsius. The temperature is usually below freezing for the month of June, July, and August. The maximum temperatures fall within the year range from 20.4 to 26.6 degrees Celsius.
Machu Picchu hosts the Inca archeological highest expression which is an international site that receives the highest number of visitors in Peru. We refer to the district capital as Aguas Calientes, and it hosts so many travelers who visit Machu Picchu. The region also has several hot springs that delight the tourists too much. You can get to Machu Picchu via the Inca trail or by train.
How To Get to Machu Picchu?
How to get to Machu Picchu? You cannot run away from the fact the Machu Picchu is a dream vacation destination. There are so many people around the world who wish to get to Machu Picchu. There is no way you will travel to a place before you start thinking of how to get there. Here is a guide that can assist you to locate your way to Machu Picchu.
You need to start by booking international flights for your trip. It is very easy to decide where to fly because Peru has only one international airport. This airport is in the seaside capital city of Lima. Your airport attendants will assist you to determine the best route and number of flights you will take to Lima. You should always aspire to take the shortest and less expensive route. Flight prices to Lima vary depending on where you are coming. The best time to visit Machu Picchu in when we have very few people flying into Lima.
The best approach is to begin searching for your flight early. You can get less expensive flights by avoiding major holiday travels. You will realize that so many people go to Lima during holidays, and the increase in flight demand tends to hike the prices. There are several websites you can use to compare fare prices from various destinations to Lima.
Once you arrive in Lima, you will need to travel to Cuzco before heading to Machu Picchu. You can either move by road or air from Lima to Cuzco. Once in Cuzco, you can take a plane to Machu Picchu directly. We have an elaborate discussion on how you will be able to move from Lima to Machu Picchu in the point below.
Lima to Machu Picchu
How to travel from Lima to Machu Picchu? Once you arrive in Lima, you have three choices you can make to Cuzco then Machu Picchu. From Lima, you can fly directly to Cuzco. You can also decide to spend some time in Lima before you head to Cuzco. The last option is to take a long and windy journey to Cuzco by road. The first alternative of flying from Lima to Cuzco is relatively expensive. You need to be very careful because some internal airplanes charge higher amounts for non-Peruvians. Going by plane also denies you the opportunity to have a look at the region.
Most people prefer to use the second and third option. It is advisable to spend some time in Lima before boarding a train to Cuzco. Once you arrive in Cuzco, you can take a direct train to Machu Picchu Pueblo, which is the town that neighbors the Citadel itself. You can also take a plane directly into the sacred valley. Both options will lead you to Machu Picchu with a lot of ease.
The only challenge is that you will spend some time on the road if you use the train. However, the train will allow you to have a look at the amazing landscape of Peru. It can be seen to be part of the tour of the region. The other advantage is that taking the train is very cheap in comparison to boarding a flight.
One of the challenges is that the train station in Cuzco is slightly outside the town. It will force you to take a taxi from the train station to the bus station. You can also take a bus into the sacred valley and then board a train to Machu Picchu Pueblo. Once you arrive in Machu Picchu Pueblo, you have almost come to your destination. It can only take you a fifteen minutes bus drive to come to the main entrance of Machu Picchu.
Some individuals prefer to hike up the hill instead of boarding the bus. However, we don’t recommend this because the path is steep and almost follows the route of the buses. We will discuss Machu Picchu hike difficulty in the last point of this article. You can also decide to walk the entire journey by taking the Inca trail from the outer part of Cuzco. However, you will have to book Inca hiking tickets several months in advance. The challenge is that we have very few slots that sell out very quickly.
You cannot enter the ruins unless you have your passport and entry ticket. You have to purchase these tickets in advance. In case you desire to hike the Huayna Picchu Mountain that overlooks the ruins, you will have to acquire an additional ticket. You also need to buy this ticket in advance.
Cusco To Machu Picchu
How to travel from Cusco to Machu Picchu? One thing you need to understand is that we don’t have any public transport that runs through the sacred valley. However, we have the rail that offers an excellent transportation system from Cusco to Aguas Calientes, which is the third and main entrance to the ruins. You can board a one and a half hour bus drive from Cusco to Ollantaytambo. From here, you can now board another two-hour train drive to Calientes. It implies that you can take at least three-hour drive from Cusco to the ruins.
You can take four days to walk to Machu Picchu through the Inca trail. There is a 45-kilometer hike, and you will have to use a professional tour operator to purchase for you the hiking tickets. The operator will provide meals, equipment, porters, guide and in a visit to Machu Picchu. The cost normally includes the return ticket to Cusco. You cannot hike the Inca trail on your own, and hence you need guidance. You can also not walk this Inca trail backward. The price varies depending on what the outfitter pays the Potter. If you shop by price alone, you will always get what you pay for from the potters.
Machu Picchu Airport
Here are the travel tips about Machu Picchu Airport. The main airport that serves Machu Picchu is the Velasco Astete airport in Cusco Peru. Your trip advisor should do multiple searches on various sites to find out the cheapest option to the destination. You can take approximately a 45-minute drive from Cuzco to Machu Picchu. Currently, we have ten airplanes that operate from Velasco Astete airport to various cities in Peru. Some of these flights include TAM Brazilian Airlines, LAN, and Iberian among others.
Machu Picchu Hike Difficulty
What is the Machu Picchu hike difficulty? Most people who hike the Machu Picchu trail rarely talk about the challenges you expect on the way. The truth of the matter is that you have to prepare for some challenges along the way. Most backpackers talk about how great the sites are, but it’s good to prepare you for the challenges. Most people have a lot of excitement about the beauty of Machu Picchu and tend to forget about the difficulty.
The four-day hike to Machu Picchu is a hard one. You need to be physically fit for the walk before setting off. It’s advisable to visit a gym and get physically fit as you plan for the trip. Even when your tour guide informs you that the next part of the climb is an Inca flat, you should still prepare for a tedious task.
The hike has very steep Inca stairs that may make you regret why you had to start the hike. You may feel that you have no more strength even on the first day. Remember you have to use four days of hard work before you reach your destination. However, arriving at the Machu Picchu, always coming across stunning landscapes, and exploring the ancient ruins keep you going.
You should also expect some challenges when it comes to the weather. Some people experience a torrential downpour during their four days hike. It implies that wet seasons are not the best time to visit Machu Picchu. You need to prepare for cold, rainy, foggy, and miserable climatic conditions.
You will also experience a dump jungle and freezing nights along the way. You need to carry along one or two Ponchos, a rain cover, carry several pairs of clothing, and hope for the best weather. You need to prepare for the worst but hope for the best. You also need to identify the best trekking company to take you through. It’s good to realize that you will always get what you pay. The hiking experience you receive depends on the trekking company you choose. Talk with previous trekkers, do proper research and carry out several reviews before making your decision. The right crew makes the difference between a four-day total nightmare hike and magnificent experience.
You should forget the luxury of toilet paper and luxurious sit toilets along the way. You will come across a rickety hat bathroom that may not be so appealing. The bathroom has a small hole in the ground that serves as the toilet. Therefore, you should carry several toilet papers and hand sanitizers with you. You should consider this as part of the hiking experience. You will always come across several individuals, and you encourage each other as you do the hiking.
In conclusion, you should take your time to plan properly before traveling to Machu Picchu. This article provides an overview of what to expect on the way. It will assist you to determine the best time to visit Machu Picchu and prepare for the challenges. You should avoid visiting the region during the rainy seasons and when we have several visitors touring the area. However, the best time to visit Machu Picchu depends on your availability.
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