Machu Picchu, the magnificent Inca city ruins in Peru, is a must-see. Millions of tourists go to the mountaintop city every year, but what draws them to this ruined metropolis at an altitude of 2,430 meters?
Photographs have the ability to record time and space in a way that words cannot. However, only by visiting a location in person can one fully appreciate its unique charm and feel its rich history. Even though you’ve seen hundreds of photos of the Inca citadel Machu Picchu, nothing can prepare you for the incredible reality of this ancient site.
Machu Picchu, in Peru, is a major tourist destination and one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. Every day, up to 2,000 tourists flock to this site in Peru. I will now explain the significance of the ancient ruin in the center of the mountains and how you may easily make a day trip there during your travels.
The Inca, a diverse indigenous people from South America, established a metropolis in the Peruvian Andes at an elevation of 2,430 metres in the 15th century. Located 75 kilometres northwest of Cusco in southeastern Peru, on a ridge between the peaks of Huayna Picchu and Mount Machu Picchu.
All 216 of the Inca city’s buildings were linked by a set of stairs totaling roughly 3,000 steps, and they have survived to this day. The temples’ exteriors, partly multi-story residences, fountain basins, and canal connections are all in fine shape as well. In recent years, careful restoration and faithful reconstruction of several of the buildings have taken place.
Pachactec Yupanqui, king of the Inca Empire from 1438 to 1471, oversaw the building of this metropolis, which served as the hub for the empire’s advance into South America. Studies have speculated that as many as a thousand people called that area home at the time. The city’s placement in the middle of the Andes remains a mystery. Also lost in translation is the plant’s original name. “Machu Picchu” is the name of a high top that overlooks the city.
Machu Picchu lay in obscurity for many years after its original occupants had been displaced. It was officially rediscovered in 1911. In fact, the city has been visited by explorers in every century since it was founded.
Machu Picchu as a major tourist landmark
In April 1913, National Geographic magazine devoted a full issue on the abandoned city of Machu Picchu, instantly catapulting it to international fame. A World Heritage Site since 1983, it was also named one of the Seven New Wonders of the World that same year. Since then, Machu Picchu’s verdant cliffs and stony walls have become it one of South America’s most popular tourist destinations. Every day, over 2,000 tourists from all over the world flock to the museum.
How to get there?
Machu Picchu is nestled in the Peruvian Andes, in a remote and inhospitable region. Roads do not exist in this area. This is why a train route connecting Cusco and Aguas Calientes was built. Take in the spectacular scenery as you ride over untamed streams and picturesque mountain backdrops on the panorama train.
The eight-kilometer, winding road up to the Machu Picchu citadel can be walked or taken on the bus from the little settlement at the base of the mountain. It’s preferable to get an early start. By doing so, you can avoid the throngs of other visitors and possibly see a breathtaking sunrise.
Taking the Inca Trail to go to Machu Picchu is sure to be an interesting and thrilling experience. The four-day journey from Cusco to Machu Picchu covers 44 km and 8,670 steps over the Inca Trail. Hike up to the “Dead Woman’s Pass,” the trail’s highest point at 4,200 metres, and see some small old ruins along the way. Keep on until you reach the Sun Gate and get your first glimpse of beautiful Machu Picchu.
The Inca Jungle Trek is a great value if you’re looking for something more exciting than a simple walk. Explore the Andes on a mountain bike and then raft down their wild rivers. Aguas Calientes is home to both a thrilling zip line and soothing hot springs. The four-day hike to Machu Picchu is sure to be full of exciting experiences.