The Machu Picchu ruins are located 7,000 feet above sea level on a small hilltop in Peru. Located between the Andean Mountain Range, the ruins form a majestic city above the Urabamba Valley, which lies below. The Incan constructed structure is called the “Lost Cities.” It was discovered in 1911 by Yale archaeologist Hiram Bingham. According to archaeologists, around 1200 people may have lived in the area. Many experts, however, deduce that the Machu Picchu was probably a retreat for Incan rulers. It is very isolated from the rest of Peru. One must travel great distances to reach the nearest village. www.travelrows.com
The Machu Picchu ruins on the map:
The structures are logically separated into three categories: urban, agricultural, and urban. The functions of the buildings match their surroundings. Agricultural terracing and aqueducts make use of the slopes. The lower region contains buildings for farmers and teachers. The religious areas sit upon the crest of the hill, overlooking the Urubamba Valley that lies below. The ruins include palaces, temples, baths, storage areas, and around 150 houses, all remarkably preserved. The structures are carved out of the gray granite of the mountaintop. Machu Picchu is a wonder—both architecturally and aesthetically. Many blocks weigh 50 tons or more, but are perfectly shaped and fitted together.
Machu Picchu is a spectacular tourist destination. It is a must-see for people visiting Peru. It is a good idea to visit this architectural feat if you are to go to South America. Tourism at the Machu Picchu is high from June to August. If you plan to visit during this time, you can expect to bump into around 3,000 other visitors. There is a charge to enter the site. It is under $50. It is wise to hire a guide, if you want some assistance and supplemental information as you walk through.
Most visitors come by train from Cusco. The trip takes about 3 to 4 hours. It may be somewhat long, but the views of the Urubamba River and Andes Mountains are beautiful. If you are willing to spend more money and travel in luxury, you can book a more expensive tour package that costs hundreds of dollars. This includes entry into Machu Picchu, a guided tour, as well as a gourmet meal each way of the trip. Regardless of the package you choose, the train takes visitors to the town of Aguas Calientes, the main town for Machu Picchu tourism. In Aguas Calientes, tourists can meet other tourists.
This town also offers hostels and hotels for all budgets. Once in the area, you can decide to hike along the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, but you may choose to save your energy to climb Huayna Picchu once you arrive at the final destination. Besides hiking, you can take the bus. The cost of this is around $15 round trip. Buses are available all day long.
Once at Machu Picchu, you will feel overwhelmed with emotions. It is a breathtaking and fulfilling experience for all tourists and hikers. Early explorers have also expressed this sentiment. This Peruvian wonder will take you to a different time.
Lake Titicaca – another great place to visit in Peru