What Are Some Travel Tips When Hiking to Machu Picchu?

by | Apr 6, 2023 | Machu Picchu | 0 comments

Tips For Machu Picchu Trvel

If these Machu Picchu Travel Tips will make a memorable trip in Peru share and comment below Plase.

Machu Picchu is a special remains of the Inca civilization, attracting thousands of tourists to its remote location every day. Despite being situated on top of a mountainous region, it has become one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations and has been recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Machu Picchu Trek
Final Day Machu Picchu After Salkantay Trek for 5 day Hike

How to Visit Machu Pichu?

Before you visit Machu Picchu, it’s important to stay informed about the recent changes implemented since July 1st, 2023. Make sure you’re aware of all the Machu Pichcu rules and regulations that have been put in place.

During my recent month in 2023 Travel to Machu Picchu, it seemed like many of the rules and regulations weren’t being enforced.

However, it is always advisable to know what these are so that you can make the most out of your adventure. Therefore, be sure to remember these Machu Picchu tour Travel tips for an unforgettable experience in Peru.

In this article travel tips Machu Picchu tour, you will know a list of tips about how to travel to Machu Picchu. also have a chance to organize the perfect trip to Peru; So pay attention and follow these responsible Peru tips.

When arriving in Cusco City, it is advisable to leave your hotel early and catch a train to Aguas Calientes. This will allow you to make the most of your day and avoid crowds on your next visit.

Machu PicchuPeru
Machu Picchu Cusco Peru Travel Tips

Travel Tips how to Buy Your Machu Picchu Tickets in Advance

Don’t miss out on the chance to experience the awe-inspiring Machu Picchu! Planning your visit in advance is key to ensure you don’t face any last-minute disappointments.

Machu Picchu Travel recommends securing your tickets at least six months ahead, as this popular destination fills up quickly, especially during peak season. Even during the low season, it’s best to book weeks or days in advance to guarantee your desired entry date.

For those seeking adventure on the 4 days Inca Trail to Machu Picchu or exploring limited-access sites like Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain, early booking is a must. Start planning now to make unforgettable memories at this incredible UNESCO World Heritage Site!

RELATED: Short Inca Trail With Hotel

Machu Picchu Entrance Ticket
Entrance Ticket for Machu Pichcu

2. You Can Pay Extra to Hike the Famous Mountains – Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu MT.

If you’re hoping to hike the mountains surrounding the ruins, you can pay extra when purchasing your ticket — you’ll also be assigned a specific time range when you can begin your hike. Those hoping to hike Huayna Picchu should plan to buy their entrance tickets at least three months ahead of time and for Machu Picchu Mountain, three to four weeks before you go. If you want to do a small trek that’s included in the price of your ticket, consider the hikes to the Sun Gate or the Inca Bridge, which are family-friendly.

Huayna Picchu offers a shorter hike of about one to two hours with very steep drop-offs and you may have to use your hands or crawl around the rocks in spots where there aren’t guardrails. It’s a popular trek, too, so that means it’s also more crowded. If you suffer from vertigo or are afraid of heights, do not do this hike.

Huayna Picchu
Huayna Picchu Mountain in Machu Picchu Inca City

Machu Picchu MT

Machu Picchu MT presents a thrilling hiking experience lasting approximately two to four hours, featuring steep stone steps. While there are a few drop-offs, it’s not as vertigo-inducing as Huayna Picchu.

However, this mountain is higher and the hike is longer. Please note that both hikes are challenging and not suitable for individuals with limited mobility. Nonetheless, both offer breathtaking views of the ruins and the majestic surrounding mountains. Take utmost care during your adventure as rescues in this remote location can be quite challenging.

best 2 day inca trail tour
Machu Picchu Mountain Hike

3. Conquer the Heights: Unveiling the High Elevation of Machu Picchu

At an elevation of 2,430 meters (7,972 feet) above sea level, Machu Picchu sits lower than its neighboring city of Cusco, which stands at 3,400 meters or 11,152 feet. This means that if you’ve already acclimatized in Cusco, you are less likely to experience altitude sickness when Traveling Machu Picchu. However, if you plan to hike Machu Picchu Mountain or Huayna Picchu, it’s important to note that the altitudes at the top are over 3,000 meters (~9,842 feet) and approximately 2,700 meters (~8,858 feet), respectively. So, especially if you’re being active, you may feel the effects of the altitude. But don’t worry, with proper preparation and awareness, you can still fully enjoy these incredible destinations!

If you’re worried about the effects of high altitude, it’s best to proceed cautiously and stay hydrated. Additionally, sipping coca tea, chewing coca leaves, or taking a soroche pill (readily available at local Peruvian pharmacies) can provide relief from symptoms such as shortness of breath and lethargy. It’s advisable to consult your doctor beforehand if you have any concerns about the altitude.

Hiking Tours To Machu Picchu
Machu Picchu Tour & Tickets

4. Visit Machu Picchu in the Morning or Evening

Exciting news! With the new regulations, visiting Machu Picchu has become more convenient and organized. Now, you can choose between two-time slots to enter this incredible site: from 6:00 am to 12:00 pm or from 12:00 pm to 5:30 pm. Don’t worry if you’ve purchased a morning entrance ticket – chances are, you won’t be asked to leave at noon.

I had the morning ticket and enjoyed exploring from 6:30 am to almost 4:00 pm without any issues or encounters with guards. However, it’s important to note that these rules may evolve in the future. The site will need to establish a system to smoothly manage the exit of thousands of visitors at the designated end time. So, for now, you can make the most of this flexibility and fully immerse yourself in the wonders of Machu Picchu!

Tour Leaders Peru Machu Picchu Peru Tours | Tour Leaders Peru

5. Are Bathrooms Beyond Machu Picchu’s Main Entrance?

Just outside the gate at Machu Picchu, there’s a convenient small snack bar, restaurant, and bathroom. It only costs one sol, which is approximately 30 cents, to use these facilities. However, there’s a catch – you’re only allowed one exit and re-entry during your visit.

This can be used for a quick bathroom break or to grab some snacks. Just remember, if you have a morning entrance ticket and plan to stay longer, make sure you’re back inside before noon. After that time, re-entry may not be permitted.

Machu Picchu buss stop
Main Entrance of Machu Picchu – Bus Station

6. Bring Your Original Passport With You

Here’s a handy tip: Make sure you don’t forget to bring your passport along when you visit Machu Picchu! It’s a must-have to enter, as you’ll need to present it along with your ticket. And guess what?

You can even get a special Machu Picchu stamp on your passport to commemorate your visit! Look out for a small desk right after the entrance or simply ask a friendly staff member where to find it once you’re in. Enjoy your adventure!

7. Get a Personal Tour Leader in Machu Picchu

Welcome to the site! Whether you arrived without a guide or the staff didn’t check, no worries! If you encounter any entry issues, licensed guides are readily available near the entrance gate, eager to offer their services and make your experience even better. Don’t hesitate to hire one on the spot!

8. What To Wear in Machu Picchu to Avoid Mosquitoes

The mosquito bites in Machu Picchu show no mercy. Whether you call them sandflies, mosquitoes, or chiggers, their bites itch for weeks, sometimes even regular repellent fails to deter them. The best defense against these itchy red welts is to wear pants and long sleeves, even in warm weather.

During each visit, I witnessed tourists wearing shorts and suffering from the most severe insect bites I have ever seen. These bites appeared as giant, swollen, red patches covering their exposed skin. As a local tour guide, I also experienced numerous bites during my hikes that persisted for nearly 4 weeks, despite using repellent. Some relief can be found by using a repellent with a high concentration of DEET, and the locals here swear by rubbing shampoo on their legs and leaving it unwashed. They claim that this creates a “second skin” that repels bugs.

RELATED: What to Pack For The Inca Trail?

Machu Picchu Packing List
Machu Picchu Packing List

9. The Most Important Items to Bring to Machu Picchu

Make sure to bring sunblock and bug spray. Alternatively, you can try the local anti-mosquito method with citronella.

Hiking Shoes: It’s also wise to wear comfortable walking shoes and layer your clothing, as the mornings can be chilly, midday can get hot, and rain is always a possibility.

Backpack: While small or regular-size backpacks are allowed, be aware that large backpacks are not permitted. If your bag exceeds 40 cm x 35 cm x 20 cm (15.7 inches x 13.7 inches x 7.9 inches), you’ll need to store it in the lockers for a fee before entering the site.

10. Water plastic bottles and snacks aren’t Allowed

When exploring Machu Picchu, here’s a helpful tip: the staff generally doesn’t inspect backpacks. So, if you want to bring in plastic water bottles and snacks (despite the rule against it), a clever workaround is to discreetly stash them in your backpack. Interestingly enough, during tours, I observed many people openly carrying large water bottles without any issues. It seems the staff isn’t enforcing this particular rule.

However, if you prefer to abide by the rules, you’ll be glad to know that reusable water bottles are allowed. Consider taking one of those instead. Oh, and remember to pack out any trash or wrappers with you. Let’s keep this remarkable place clean and pristine for everyone to enjoy!

Water botle
Water Container

11. How to get Machu Picchu From Aguas Calientes

Walk to Machu Picchu

Ascending to Machu Picchu is an option by foot, but be prepared for a demanding climb lasting one to two hours due to its steepness. Alternatively, you can opt for a 20-minute bus ride to the top. To secure your bus tickets, head to the bus stand in Aguas Calientes the night prior, where they cost $12 per direction. Remember to bring your passport for ticket purchase, as it is strictly required.

Take the Bus to Machu Picchu

To ensure an optimal experience, it is recommended to plan ahead if you choose to take the bus. Arriving approximately three hours before your designated entrance time is advised. Although it may sound extreme, many individuals begin lining up as early as 5:30 am, resulting in a delay of reaching the ruins until around 8:30 am or 9:00 am if you join the queue at that time.

For those aiming to witness the sunrise at around 6:00 am, it is advisable to arrive by 3:30 am to secure your spot in line. If you are prone to motion sickness, it is worth considering taking motion-sickness pills. The journey, although relatively short, entails a series of switchbacks and curves that can be somewhat challenging.

Aguas Calientes Bus Station
Aguas Calientes Bus Station

Back To Aguas Calientes a Catch Train to Cusco

Descending from Machu Picchu can be just as time-consuming as the ascent. Upon leaving at 3:45pm, I found myself waiting in line until approximately 5:15pm for the bus ride down.

Although I contemplated walking down, my legs were still trembling from hiking Machu Picchu Mountain, and the idea of navigating more stone steps seemed daunting. If you plan to depart Aguas Calientes on the same day, I recommend booking an evening train to allow ample time for exploring the ruins and waiting for the bus ride back to town.

Have you ever been to Machu Picchu? Tell us about your experience, below.

All images by the author.

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Cesar Conde

I’m Cesar Conde Licensed Tour Guide in Peru, owner of Tour Leaders Peru and Travel Advisor. My other side job is a Digital Nomad. I share my amazing travel experiences, stories, guides, and itineraries for travelers like you and me!

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