20 Things You Should Know Before Going on a Machu Picchu Tour
Going on a Machu Picchu Tour is an adventure of a lifetime. This is a list of 20 things to know before going to Machu Picchu. This is not a traditional list, and it contains tours, activities, places, recommendations and tips. We’re sure it will help you plan your trip better!
1. Aguas Calientes:
This Town lies at the bottom of the mountain of Machu Picchu. There is only train access and hiking access to this town. The only road in town leads to Machu Picchu zigzagging its way to the top of the mountain.
2. Coca-leaf tea:
This will be your best ally against altitude sickness. Specially if your hiking to Machu Picchu. The tea is made naturally from coca leaves. It will give you energy and help you acclimate to the altitude.
3. Rafting Urubamba Valley:
On the way from Cusco to your Machu Picchu Tour, you will go through the Sacred Valley of the Incas, Urubamba. We recommend taking a half-day rafting tour and enjoy a fun white-water rafting adventure.
4. Maras and Moray on a bike:
Another great recommendation is to hop on a bike and go to Moray Archeological Site and Maras Salt Mines. The landscape is incredible and it definitely beats the experience of going by car.
5. Bus or hike from Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu:
From Aguas Calientes you’ll need to get to the top of the mountain to reach Machu Picchu. There are two options: walking/hiking or taking the official buses. This is for going back and forth to Aguas Calientes Town.
6. There are 4 ways of getting to Machu Picchu:
The following are four best ways of getting to Machu Picchu. In a nutshell, each way of getting to Machu Picchu is a unique experience. It also depends on how much time you have available.
7. A. Inca Trail:
Hike the emblematic path the Incas used to take to Machu Picchu. You can take the Express Hiking Tour or the Classic Trek Tour. An immersive adventure through the Andes to the jungle.
8. B. By Train:
The only option of getting to Aguas Calientes besides the Inca Trail. A quick way of getting to Machu Picchu. The view will start in Urubamba Valley and take you riverside to Aguas Calientes Town. You can take the Train to Machu Picchu Tour.
9. C. Salkantay Trek 5D/4N:
This is an amazing and less crowded way of trekking to Machu Picchu. Although the path is not an official Inca Trail, the majestic snow-capped mountaintops of Salkantay and Huamantay will leave you speechless. Read more about the 5D/4N Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu.
10. D.Lares Trek 4D/3N:
Another way of getting to Machu Picchu. Its shorter than the Salkantay Trek and it provides the travelers a more culturally immersive experience. Lares Community is very friendly and surrounded by an amazing landscape. Learn more about the Lares 4D/3N Trek to Machu Picchu.
11. Express Inca Trail 1D hike:
This hike starts on the last stretch of the Inca Trail, before arriving at Machu Picchu by the Sun Gate. It’s a great experience when you’re short on time! Learn more about the Express Hiking Tour.
12. Classic Inca Trail 4D hike:
This is the complete Inca Trail experience. You get into a 3N camping journey through the iconic Inca Trail and head to Machu Picchu. You’ll be able to go through the Andean plateau and valleys before reaching the jungle. Learn more about the Classic Trek Tour.
13. Huayna Picchu mountain top:
Huayna is female in Quechua. Machu is male in Quechua. Huayna Picchu stands in front of Machu Picchu. It’s the often photographed mountain at the back of the Machu Picchu Ruins. You’ll have to climb a steep way to get to the top, but the views are definitely worth it!
14. Inca Trail permits:
Have in consideration that only 500 permits to start the Inca Trail are sold per day. May and June permits can be sold the first month since sales begin. Learn more about the Inca Trail Permits 2019 where we have created a very complete information resource.
In Cusco and Urubamba won’t bother you that much, but during the jungle part of your stay, they will. During the Inca Trail or at Machu Picchu and Aguas Calientes, be sure to take a good mosquito repellent.
Most Inca Trail Trek Tours service food. Most are Ok and will give you the needed calories to continue the hike. There are few travel operators that go the extra mile with their camping meals. We, BMQ Travel, are the only operators that have Chef Designed Meals for their trekking adventures.
We recommend drinking bottled water. Although water may be boiled, most foreigners will have bad stomach experiences after drinking other types of water. It’s just a recommendation.
18. Types of tours:
Make sure you book with a travel operator like BMQ Travel that won’t “farm” you to other groups or will send you with third-party operators. Quality and services will decrease and you won’t get your bang for your buck!
19. Admission to Machu Picchu:
Tickets to enter the site are based on schedules. Make sure your ticket if for the schedule that fits your itinerary. For example, don’t book the morning ticket if you’re arriving at Aguas Calientes Town at night.
20. For those adventurers:
Urubamba Valley is on the way to Machu Picchu. If you have available time, we definitely suggest staying at least one night in the valley. There are several adrenaline full activities and also family activities. Horseback riding, picnics, hikes, etc. are among the best.
Those are our 20 Things You Should Know Before going on a Machu Picchu Tour. We hope this non-conventional list will help you plan a better trip. Peru and Machu Picchu are incredible destinations. We hope you enjoy your visit!
Extra tip 1: The BMQ Travel difference
At bmqtravel.com we are proud of servicing the best camping experience. We service chef designed meals and provide the best immersive experiences. Our travelers rate us THE best way to get to Machu Picchu.
Extra tip 2: we’re glad to help you plan!
Planning a vacation to Peru? Interested in going to Machu Picchu? At bmqtravel.com we are a team of expert advisors that will gladly help you on planning your perfect trip! Contact us!
At BMQ Travel we strive for excellence in service and customer satisfaction. As part of that vision we elaborate this guides for travelers who are interested in the main Adventures and Activities Peru has to offer.
Click here to view our: Ranking of Treks in Peru by Difficulty to see which one fits according to your needs and experience.
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