Peru’s Iconic Machu Picchu
This was a ‘life list’ trip for me and one I had never thought I’d get to at this time in my life. To say I was blown away by Peru in general is an understatement. It is simply beautiful no matter where you look. Surrounded by the Andes, green rolling hills, quaint brooks and streams, and the locals in traditional dress everywhere you looked. The absolute highlight of course, was visiting Machu Picchu. Of course, I’d seen the pictures, but as probably every blog out there will say, nothing can prepare you for it in real life. I didn’t trek in over 5 days but instead took the quick way with a stunning train trip up to the main base of Machu Picchu, Agues Calientes. A gorgeous little town, but it was the scenery on the way up that was truly amazing. Snow-capped mountains, people on their treks, farm life, locals and just the sheer size of the mountains everywhere you looked.
The train trip in itself is entertainment. The staff on board are all smiling and friendly, serving complimentary food and drinks and on our return even did a fashion show of alpaca made clothing to keep us entertained! That was a first. After arriving via train to Agues Calientes you then board what can only be described as a death wish bus. The drivers fly up the side of the mountain to the top where Machu Picchu is located. This was a knuckle biting winding ascent which got to the point where I could no longer look out the window. I have never been so glad to disembark anything.
From here it’s about a 10-minute steep walk up the hillside to be welcomed with the stunning view of the Machu Picchu ruins. It’s just astounding. In the middle of nowhere and you are standing on top of a mountain basically in the clouds. How anything was built here is phenomenal. Our guide was fantastic, he knew the history inside and out and regaled us with stories of the Incas and what their lives would have been like. Despite his tales of constant singing, drinking and merriment, I’m unsure that it would be the life for me! We spent 4 or so hours here wandering around and hearing the stories about each different site. We even got to meet a few of the locals… alpacas. An absolute trip of a lifetime that I feel unbelievably lucky to have experienced.
Read more of my travel stories here