Waking up to the sounds of a wild river, opening the curtains to see a huge mountain in front of you, wish all mornings were like this!
We got up early to get our bus tickets (24 USD both ways) which are valid throughout the whole day. Our entrance at Machu Picchu starts from 10 am, so we quickly packed, got breakfast and went to the bus.
The bus ride was about 30 minutes, with amazing views over the mountain range! We arrived around 9:30 am, but our tickets were valid from 10:00 am onwards for a period of 4 hours. They were quite strict on the minute about letting us in. Exactly at 10:00 am we could go.
In the beginning we walked around 10/15 minutes to see the spectacular view over Machu Picchu. We were a bit unlucky at first with some rain and clouds, but the weather up there changes every 5 minutes. We spend at least an hour to admire the view and keep shooting pictures waiting for the clouds to give us the right shot. With you ticket you can spent 4 hours, and everything is one way so we were very cautious with the good spots to not leave too fast. There are a lot of trails you can do, be sure to book those in advance. We only had the standard ticket which gives you plenty of access itself. The only trail we did was the Inca Bridge, trail was quite nice and took around 25 minutes, the bridge itself is a wooden plank on some rocks.
After that we walked back, and the weather cleared up for some amazing shots! We walked the rest of the path after the shots, enjoying a lot of temples, houses and other rocks. One rock at the backside of Machu Picchu has the shape of its famous mountains and brings good luck when you touched it (which of course, we did).
A bit further near the terraces there are some grasslands with llamas walking around, just before the exit.
We spent the 4 hours and it was worth it. What we did realize is that a lot of the things you are not allowed to do, is tolerated. We saw people with food, selfie sticks and heck even a banner. (We did it ourselves 😉 ).
La Leña Grill was our food stop once we got off the bus. We saw the staff eating Cau Cau and it looked really tasty. They said it is not on the menu, but the owner asked us if we wanted to try a bit and they gave us to taste. Beef stomach with potatoes and rice. We also got a free Pisco Sour.
At 16:12 pm our train with Inca Rail departed, we took the 360 degrees cabine which gives you some awesome views on the mountains, nature and other Inca sights.
Around 17:50 pm we arrived at the train station of Ollyantambo, from which at 18:10 pm private shuttles took us to Cuszo within two hours. Got an Uber to get to our Hostel and rest after a long day.