Seek Suggestions on Trip to Machu Picchu

Old Nov 30th, 2016, 06:21 PM
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Seek Suggestions on Trip to Machu Picchu

My wife and I are both seniors and planning an one week trip to visit Machu Picchu. We are both in good health and travel overseas at least one per year. This is our first time to visit South of America.
We would appreciate very much if fellow Fodorors could advise us an itinerary for one week in Machu Picchu area.

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Old Dec 1st, 2016, 02:00 AM
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One week is not a great deal of time for a place with so many places to explore

Bear in mind that Cusco and the Sacred Valley are at high altitude and you therefore need to acclimatise to avoid feelin the effect

Assuming that your international flight arrives in Lima you first need fly to Cusco. On arrival I would transfer directly to Ollantaytambo in the Sacred Valley. A lovely inca village with impressive ruins and inca architecture. Being at a lower altitude than Cusco a couple of days there will allow acclimatisation and time to explore the village itself. A great choice of places to stay and places to eat.

Ollantaytambo is also the departure point for the train to Machu Picchu (book seats as far in advance as possible). Get the afternoon train to Aguas Calientes for MP. Stay overnight and visit MP first thing and spend the day there returning to Ollantaytambo by train for overnight. Bright and early the next morning return to Cusco by taxi stopping off at Moray, Maras and Chinchero along the way.

Once back in Cusco spend the remainder of your time there exploring the city itself and maybe a day trip to Pisac stopping off at Tambo Machay, Puka Pukara, Q'enko and Sacsayhuamnan on the way back. You can either hire a taxi to for the whole trip or the last part can be done on foot walking back from Tambo Machay back down into Cusco. It is one of the great walks in the area. Takes around 3-4 hours all downhill.

Details and photos of these places are on our old blog @
http://www.travelpod.com/travel-blog...ai/6/tpod.html

Peru starts at entry 17

Best to book your MP entry and train tickets well in advance as soon as you know your dátes. Can be done easily online
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Old Dec 1st, 2016, 09:27 AM
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Pretty much as crellston said..Assuming you are on one of the late night flights,stay near the airport on night 1, the next morning, Fly Lima to Cusco.
Immediately transfer to Ollantaytambo (the Sacred Valley) and have a very light day, to get used to the altitude. If you feel good in the pm you can take a walk thru the scenic old town . . nights 2 &3 /1 day there. For your full day tour the Sacred Valley )or just the Ollantay ruins) You could take a train to Aguas Calientes that night but .I prefer to take the early morning train and see MP as a day trip..up to you. To reach the citadel from town, there is a bus.. there is also a hotel at the top..but for me not worth the expense as it doesn't get you extra hours or views. There are also hotels at all price ranges in town if you decide to stay there. After your full day at MP, take the afternoon train back to Ollantay. I prefer to spend Night 4 there, and in the morning do a taxi tour/transfer via Moray and Chinchero back to Cusco for nights 5 and 6, seeing Cusco on the full day between. Day 7 would be your morningflight back to Lima, and sightseeing that day.Fly back the evening of Day 7 or spend the night in Lima if you can allow the 8th day for travel.
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Old Dec 1st, 2016, 07:01 PM
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Hi CRELLSTON and MLGB,

Thank you very much for your helps. I am sure will include your advises into our planning for next May trip to MP.

If I understand correctly, the suggested itinerary is following:

1) Day 1

a) Fly from the US to Lima (LIM) - Most flights from the
US to LIM arrive late in the evening.
b)Spend the first night in LIMA. Select hotel near the
airport

2) Day 2

a) Take the early flight from LIM to Cusco (CUZ), WHAT IS
PREFERED AIRLINE?
b) Transfer from Cusco to Ollantaytambo (in Sacred
Valley? BY TRAIN, by BUS or by Taxi?
c) Spend the night in Ollantaytambo. Please suggest a Hotel

3) Day 3
a) Take an early train from Ollantaytambo to Aquas
Calientes
b) spend the whole day in Machu Picchu
c) Take lake train back to Ollantaytambo,
d) Spend the night at Ollantaytambo

4) Day 4
a) Take early Taxi from Ollantaytambo to Cusco
b) stopping off at Moray, Maras and Chinchero along
the way,
c) Spend the night in Cusco
5) Day 5
a) Explore Cusco
b) Take day trips from Cusco
c) Spend the night in Cusco
6) Day 6
a) ?????
b) Fly to Lima
c) Spend the night in LIMA. Select hotel near the
airport
7) Day 7
Fly back to US

Please comment and advise.


Best Regards,
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Old Dec 2nd, 2016, 12:00 AM
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I think that would work. Day 6 you could either visit Pisac and/or Tambo Machay - Sacsayhuaman or some the time in Cusco. The former is all about ancient inca ruins and scenery, the latter museums. There is a huge amount to see in Cusco itself and the decision is clearly based on what interests you the most.

It is difficult to recommend accomodation without knowing what sort of budget you have. We last stayed in La Casa del Abuelo Riverside in Ollantaytambo - good , quiet location walking distance to the centre of the village and the ruins but you would probably need a tuk tuk to the station (unless you enjoy walking - 15 mins). Around $50 PM. Right on the station is El Alberquerque. Obviously v. Convenient for the train but probably double the price and a fair way from the centre.

Depending upon the timing of your flight, i wouldn't worry about staying near the airport on your way home. It takes 60-90 mins ( one way $20) to the airport from Miralflores or Barranco where there are lots of nice restaurants.

We used Peruvian Airlines for our flights and they were fine ( other have had problems with delays) Lan operate the most flights and have the most modern fleet so I would probably go with them as you are tight on time. Although they are more expensive.
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Old Dec 3rd, 2016, 08:44 AM
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Hi Crellston,

Many thanks again for your advises.
What is your thought if we go from Cusco to Aquas Calientes on the second day, instead of going to Ollantaytambo. We would like to take an one day river tour and spend less time in Cusco. I think we should be OK with the change in altitude change since we go to Beaver Creek in Colorado at least once a year during XMas.

Regards,
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Old Dec 4th, 2016, 09:50 AM
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Hi Crellston;

I need your advises for a potential trip to Pueta Maldonado. If I add 1-2 days to my trip to Machu Picchu, is that possible for us to take a side trip to Amazon Jungle for 1 night/2 day trip?

Regards
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Old Dec 4th, 2016, 10:55 AM
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Here is a link to some good info on altitude and acclimatisation http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Altitud...revention.aspx

The magic number for acclimatisation is around 2500m, as far as I can tell Beaver Creek is at 2400m, just below this so unless you have been significantly higher than this, it is not really any guide. Ollantaytambo is around 400m higher and so is widely regarded as being the best place in the sacred valley to acclimatise. Cusco is at 3400m and many, myself included, will experience some symptoms, shortness of breath, headaches, nausea etc. In my case, I felt really rough for a couple of days with a blinding headache. The effects are usually felt more at night. My wife was unaffected. If it is just for one night then I would be inclined to consult your GP re taking Diamox as a preventative. Needs to be taken 24 hours before arriving at altitude. Also, try and make sure that you hotel in Cusco has oxygen on hand (many mid range places and above do). It won't help you acclimatise but it will help to alleviate any symptoms. Plenty of people do go straight to Cusco and are OK.

BTW what river trip are you planning on doing?

I can't really help with Puerto Maldonado as I have yet to make it there. However, I am not a fan of just spending one night in a place, simply because when you factor in the travel time you have very little time left to actually see the place. One night doesn't even give you a full day. Two nights will give you one full day and possible a mornings sightseeing on the last day, depending on flight times etc.
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Old Dec 7th, 2016, 12:37 PM
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In Lima, I'd stay in Barranco, at least for the second nite, rather than near the airport. The area around the airport is not all that and it's a relatively easy taxi ride from there to the airport.

I'd try to visit at least one of the archeological museums in Lima. The National Archaeological and the Larco are close together with a path marked on the sidewalk--you can see both in one long afternoon, or a morning and afternoon stopping for a meal en route.

Lots of other things to do in Lima. Don't know where you're flying from, but flights to ATL left Lima in the late afternoon so you'd have some time to explore on day 7.

Can't advise on the Amazon aspect. Visited from Iquitos.
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Old Dec 7th, 2016, 06:34 PM
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I agree if you get a late fight home spend that night in Barranco, I love 3B Barranco. ( a small hotel listed under B&B s in Trip advisor.
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Old Dec 14th, 2016, 03:15 AM
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Another vote for 3 B Barranco. We stayed there this year on the recommendation of mlgb ( for which I am very grateful!). Couldn't fault the place. An added bonus is that it is just across the road from one of my favourite restaurants in Barranco http://lacuadradesalvador.com a great place for a last supper in Peru and the Chilcanos are amazing,
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