We are delighted to be able to offer a post cruise Peru tour of Machu Picchu as part of your Peru adventure. Machu Picchu, the fabled “Lost City of the Inca,” (and Quechua for “old mountain”) is a true Peruvian masterpiece bequeathed to us from the Inca civilization. Machu Picchu, built around 1450, lies 80km/50 miles northwest of Cusco at 2,400 meters/7,875 feet towering over the Urubamba Valley.
The Inca ruins of Machu Picchu were rediscovered in 1911, beneath thick layers of jungle growth, by American explorer Hiram Bingham, aided by local Peruvians. Machu Picchu’s ruins remain so remarkably well-preserved simply because the Spanish conquistadores never found them. Recently, the U.S. has just announced that more than 350 treasures taken from Machu Picchu, including skeletons and elaborate gold jewelry, will be returned to Peru. Plans call for a new museum to be built in Cusco to house them.
Most travelers arrive at Machu Picchu via rail and bus, although another option is to hike in, capturing the sunrise over the site at its most glorious. Machu Picchu Citadel is visually so rich that photo opportunities beckon at every turn. You will want to spend a full day there, marveling at Machu Picchu’s architectural feats including the Temple of the Sun, with a narrow window perfectly situated to frame the sun on the first day of winter. And you won’t want to miss the Temple of the Condor, with its multitude of tiny rooms.
The history-rich Sacred Valley of the Incas, located between Cusco and the Machu Picchu Citadel, gives travelers a good chance to acclimate to the high altitudes of the Andes. Here, green fields line the roads and small villages filled with indigenous people add bright colors to the mountain scenery. Local markets, including the very popular one held at Pisac every Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday, offer great opportunities to purchase colorful folk art and local crafts.
Contact us to arrange your Peru tour to Machu Picchu.