www.mariusztravel.com logo



This spectacular Inca site is one of the most recognized places in the World, and I decided to visit it despite the cost.  The only way to get to the village of Aguas Calientes below Machu Picchu  is by train, costing $80 minimum.  After that, a $12 bus ride, and than there is $40 entrance fee.  For that reason I didn't go by train, instead I went by 3 buses to a village called KM82, and walked along the railways the remaining 30km.  The first bus was crowded initially, but near terminal in Riobamba only a few people remained.  There was this guy standing next to me and leaning to look through the window.  I didn't like him getting so close, but I said nothing.  His coat covered my bag, which I kept on my laps, and only by accident I saw what he was up to.  His hand was right inside my bag!!!  Without thinking, I grabbed him by his throat, he played stupid and pretended not to know what I was talking about.  The bus arrived at the terminal and he run away.  But I wasn't sure if he really didn't take anything, so I run after him and detained him.  The bus driver realized what was going on and persuaded me to go to the police.  I didn't loose anything, but the thief was obviously going to try it again until successful.

I set off from KM82 knowing it was illegal and somewhat dangerous to walk on the railways.  Trains could be heard from distance on straight sections, but there were many sharp bends and tunnels. However, after I started, I had no choice but to carry on all the way to Aguas Calientes.  Sometimes I passed single houses and locals walking just like me.  After it got dark, herds of dogs fiercely protected their homes and I had to throw stones to scare them off.  I was really relieved when I saw the lights of Aguas Calientes, I had to get some sleep before the next day.

I left at 4.45am and it took 1 hour of hard uphill walking to get to the entrance of Machu Picchu.  By the time the gate was open at 6am, about 200 people already waited outside.  Most of us watched  from terraces above Machu Picchu the sun illuminating distant mountains first, before warm sun rays finally arrived at the old Inca ceremonial site.  The views were spectacular, just as expected.  Later, I went to the top of Waynapicchu, the impossible-looking mountain behind Machu Picchu.  A good path leads all the way to the top, from where a fantastic view of the whole site can be appreciated.  Many books have been written about Machu Picchu and I'm not going to write about it's impressive temples, terraces or water channels.  I will only say that it deserves it's reputation and the whole experience is unforgettable.   photos