Fodor's Expert Review Hikes from Machu Picchu

Machu Picchu and the Inca Trail Archaeological Site/Ruins

If you come by train, you can take a 45-minute walk on a gentle arc leading uphill to the southeast of the main complex. Intipunku, the Sun Gate, is a small ruin in a nearby pass. This small ancient checkpoint is where you'll find that classic view that Inca Trail hikers emerge upon. The walk along the way yields some interesting and slightly different angles as well. Some minor ancient outbuildings along the path occasionally host grazing llamas.

Built rock by rock up a hair-raising stone escarpment, the Inca Bridge is yet another example of Inca engineering ingenuity. From the cemetery at Machu Picchu, it's a 30-minute walk along a narrow path. Note that you will likely need to buy two entrance tickets, one for the morning and one for the afternoon, in order to have your guided tour and do one of these hikes.

The Huayna Picchu trail, which follows an ancient Inca path, leads up the famous sugarloaf hill in front of Machu Picchu for an exhilarating... READ MORE

If you come by train, you can take a 45-minute walk on a gentle arc leading uphill to the southeast of the main complex. Intipunku, the Sun Gate, is a small ruin in a nearby pass. This small ancient checkpoint is where you'll find that classic view that Inca Trail hikers emerge upon. The walk along the way yields some interesting and slightly different angles as well. Some minor ancient outbuildings along the path occasionally host grazing llamas.

Built rock by rock up a hair-raising stone escarpment, the Inca Bridge is yet another example of Inca engineering ingenuity. From the cemetery at Machu Picchu, it's a 30-minute walk along a narrow path. Note that you will likely need to buy two entrance tickets, one for the morning and one for the afternoon, in order to have your guided tour and do one of these hikes.

The Huayna Picchu trail, which follows an ancient Inca path, leads up the famous sugarloaf hill in front of Machu Picchu for an exhilarating trek. Limited to 400 visitors daily at two entrance times (7–8 am and 10–11 am), tickets must be purchased at the same time as your entrance tickets for Machu Picchu (combined price S/200, S/152 for Machu Picchu plus the S/48 for Huayna Picchu). The arduous, vertiginous hike up a steep, narrow set of Inca-carved steps to the summit and back takes between two and three hours round-trip. Bring insect repellent; the gnats can be ferocious. An alternate route down from Huayna Picchu (at least 1½ hours to 2 hours down and back over to Machu Picchu) takes you to the Temple of the Moon/Great Cave (Templo de la Luna/Gran Caverna). It's not an easy venture, but well worth the opportunity to be in nature without the crowds. Give yourself 5 hours for the whole route with time to stop

Hiking up Machu Picchu Mountain is another possibility. Tickets for this must also be purchased at the same time as the entrance to the site itself (combined price S/200). Entrance is allowed at two times: between 7 and 8 am and between 9 and 10 am.

Only with entrances to one of the two mountains are you allowed to stay in the site for more than four hours: with these permits, you may stay in until 2 pm.

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Archaeological Site/Ruins Flight Centre

Quick Facts

Machu Picchu
Aguas Calientes, Cusco  Peru

www.machupicchu.gob.pe

Sight Details:
Rate Includes: S/152 combined entrace to Machu Picchu and Huayna Picchu; S/142 combined entrance to Machu Picchu and Machu Picchu mountain, S/200 combined entrance to Machu Picchu with either Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain

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