COVID-19 alert: Travel requirements are changing rapidly, including need for pre-travel COVID-19 testing and quarantine on arrival.

Machu Picchu
Travel Guide

Machu Picchu which includes hiking or walking, a ruin and mist or fog

The sacred Inca city, built high in the Andes and hidden for centuries, is now one of Peru’s most spectacular and popular tourist destinations. 

Machu Picchu is a terraced citadel with remains of temples, palaces, fountain and altars. The fabled “Lost City of the Incas” is thought to have been constructed by the Incas around 1450 and is an architectural marvel.

The citadel sits 7,970 feet (2,430 meters) above sea level in the Sacred Valley northwest of Cusco. It remains a mystery what purpose Machu Picchu served and why it was abandoned. In the centuries that followed its abandonment, the jungle hid the isolated city from sight until it was uncovered in 1911.

Walk up to the Guardhouse and Funeral Rock to get the full overview of the mystical city with its comical free-roaming llamas. Visit the semicircular Temple of the Sun, the Palace of the Princess and the Temple of the Three Windows. Don’t miss the Intihuatana, a carved stone marking the winter solstice.

Due to the thin air and humidity, it is a good idea to pace yourself as you explore the sacred buildings. Notice how, without the aid of advanced tools, the Incas cut and stacked the huge stone blocks to fit precisely.

Make sure to plan ahead to visit the world-famous city in the sky, as there is only a limited amount of visitors allowed on-site and getting there takes 3 to 4 hours. Take the train to Aguas Calientes from Poroy, a small village near Cusco, or from Ollantaytambo further down the line. The luxury option is to take a one-day package tour from Cusco with a guide. Purchase your Machu Picchu entrance ticket in Aguas Calientes before you take the bus or hike up the mountain. If you also want to climb Huayna Picchu and Machu Picchu Mountain, book special tickets through the government website for Machu Picchu. Students receive a discount.

Bring lunch, water and an information booklet, as there are few facilities on the mountain. Aim to arrive just before sunrise to see Machu Picchu lit in full glory.

Taypikala Boutique Machupicchu
Taypikala Boutique Machupicchu
4 out of 5
Av. Pachacutec #808, Machu Picchu, Cusco
Free cancellationReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is CA $138 per night from May 11 to May 11
Located in the heart of Machu Picchu, this romantic hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu and Aguas Calientes Hot Springs. Huayna ...
4.1/5Very Good! (658 reviews)
"The property is at the top of the hill from the train station so if you have any issues with the altitude in Aguas Calientes, you will have to take your time getting to it. Also, be cautious of opening the windows as there are no screens and insects will come right on in. The staff are WONDERFUL ..."

Reviewed on Apr. 22, 2021

Taypikala Boutique Machupicchu
Sanctuary Lodge, A Belmond Hotel, Machu Picchu
Sanctuary Lodge, A Belmond Hotel, Machu Picchu
5 out of 5
Carretera Hiram Bingham Km 7.5, Machu Picchu, Cusco
The price is CA $789 per night from Jun 1 to Jun 1
Situated in a national park, this luxury hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu and Huayna Picchu. Aguas Calientes Hot Springs is ...
4.5/5Wonderful! (267 reviews)
"Josue and Elias did an excellent job, great customer service. Hotel in an excellent location."

Reviewed on Dec. 8, 2020

Sanctuary Lodge, A Belmond Hotel, Machu Picchu
Inkaterra Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel
Inkaterra Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel
4.5 out of 5
Pueblo de Machu Picchu, 084, Machu Picchu, Cusco
The price is CA $550 per night from May 11 to May 11
Located in the heart of Machu Picchu, this luxury hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu and Aguas Calientes Hot Springs. Huayna ...
4.7/5Exceptional! (66 reviews)
Beautiful hotel!!!
"This hotel was amazing. Made our stay in Aguas Calientas perfect. The room and staff were great. Wish I has more than 2 days here."

Reviewed on Jan. 26, 2020

Inkaterra Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Popular places to visit in Machu Picchu

Top things to do in Machu Picchu

Reviews of Machu Picchu

4.9

Top Destination

5 - Excellent
42
5 - Excellent 87.5%
4 - Good
6
4 - Good 12.5%
3 - Okay
0
3 - Okay 0%
2 - Disappointing
0
2 - Disappointing 0%
1 - Terrible
0
1 - Terrible 0%

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

Mar 5, 2020

Incredible experience. Every part of the area is magic. Agua caliente is an incredible town. Machu picchu was well worth the trip.

5/5 - Excellent

NMJK

Feb 22, 2020

A remarkable experience. Everyone should experience the beauty and history of this ancient Incan ruin at least once in their lifetime. Unforgettable!

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

Oct 24, 2019

If you’re not in a rush there is a local market that is tucked away above bus departure point for Machu Picchu and tasty local food eaten for 10 sols. The local waterfalls on upper part of town is quiet moderate challenge hike and beautiful(10 sols)

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

Sep 30, 2019

A one in a lifetime experience. It was a hard trip for someone like me, a senior, but it is totally worth it. A must see.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

Jun 18, 2019

Life changing experience...so thankful

4/5 - Good

Verified traveller

May 27, 2019

The town is little more than a tourist resort, with not much local life. But totally worth it for the spectacular scenery and access to the Machu Picchu site, which is breathtaking.

Read travel guides and advice on visiting Machu Picchu

Machu Picchu Travel Guide

Machu Picchu Travel Guide

Machu Picchu Travel Guide

Cities near Machu Picchu