What is the Best Way to Reach Machu Picchu?

There are several routes leading to the famous Inca Ruins of Machu Picchu. Each one is beautiful in its own right and everyone will have their own opinion on which is best. However, when it comes to determining the best way to Machu Picchu, a more personal question must be asked:

“What type of traveler are you?”

 

How do you like to travel?

  • Are you physically fit?
  • How much time do you have?

This can be broken down to help you choose what route to Machu Picchu fits you best. The most important question being, “How much time do you have available to travel?”. This makes the largest difference when deciding what path to take as trips can often take several exhausting days.

That leads us to our next question, “How physically fit are you?”. There are some routes that require a good amount of athleticism and endurance, so you’ll want to make sure you’re ready for a challenge. Also, the altitude on some routes can be over 15,000ft (4,500m), so you need to be sure that you can handle high altitudes. 

But don’t stress too much – thousands of visitors make it to Machu Picchu everyday. So you can make it too! By talking to you, we always find the right Tour at Daspe Travel and modify it to your needs.

 

The way to Machu Picchu

We will outline three of our favorite routes that you can take to reach Machu Picchu:

  • Direct train to Machu Picchu
  • Salkantay Trek
  • Inka Jungle Tour

However before discussing these tours in depth, let us highlight a few other options:  the Lares Trek and Choquequirao Trek.

Lares Trek: This is a 4-day tour that can also be done as a completely separate trip. If you would like to take a route that is off the beaten track then you might look into doing this tour. However, you will end up traveling by train to Machu Picchu at the end of this trek. The trek is of average difficulty and will reach altitudes of 15,680ft (4,780m).

Choquequirao Trek: If you have a lot of time on your hands, this 7 to 11-day tour will take you to the enchanting ruins of Choquequirao on the way to the more famous Machu Picchu. It is a pretty intensive trek and will get you up to altitudes of 15,320ft (4,670m).

 

Short on time? – Take a train to Machu Picchu

Inca Jungle - Train Tour

This option is great for those short on time and for those not wanting a very physical journey.

Pros

  • You will be on a train, allowing you to relax on your way to Machu Picchu.
  • This trip can be completed in a single day.
  • Option to extend the journey to 2 days if you wish to stay a night in the town of Aguas Calientes.

Cons

  • Although the ride is beautiful, you will not get the chance to see much diversity.
  • No interaction with local communities along the way.
  • Spending a full day with room for little else.
  • No additional adventures like trekking, biking, zip lining or rafting.

Best for what type of traveler?

This option is best suited for people that are limited on time. It is also very fitting for people who would rather have a relaxing journey to Machu Picchu. This tour is very family friendly and appropriate for all ages.

 

The more active options

Salkantay Trek

Salkantay Trek

This tour is usually organized during select months during the year, mainly from May to October. It is not recommended to do this trek in the rainy season, which lasts from around November to April. It is an active tour that requires trekking the entire way and lasts 4 to 5 days, with the final day spent in Machu Picchu.

Pros

  • This tour is all about trekking and will give you the opportunity to hike through some beautiful landscapes.
  • It is pretty warm during the day.
  • Plenty of time to explore the nature of high mountains.

Cons

  • Accommodation will be mostly tents/camping.
  • Colder nights.
  • It takes up to 5 days.
  • You won’t get the chance to travel through the jungle.
  • The high altitude of 15,220ft (4,640m) can be difficult to acclimatize to.

Best for what type of traveler?

The challenging nature of this trek makes it suited for those that are physically fit and love trekking. If you love camping and being in the wild then this could be the tour for you.

 

Inka Jungle Tour

Inka Jungle Tour

This 4-day tour is offered all year round and exposes you to a variety of adventures.

To begin, you will bike down from an altitude of 14,100ft (4,300 m) to 4,920ft (1,500m). You will then go rafting and do a little hiking – a truly diverse first day. The second and third days will consist of trekking along ancient Inca paths, and include a chance to zip line through the mountains! On the final day of the tour, you will trek to Machu Picchu and learn about the history of the Inca Empire.

Pros

  • Great variety of landscapes included, from snowy peaks to humid jungles.
  • You can bike, raft, and zip line.
  • Accommodation is in hostels, instead of tents.
  • The tour lasts for 4 days and can be reduced to 3, if necessary.
  • There will only be at high altitudes for a short time.
  • You will have the opportunity to explore the jungle environment, possibly visiting coffee and fruit plantations.

Cons

  • This is a very active and full tour, keeping you very busy.
  • Includes more risky activities, making it a less family-friendly option.
  • Be ready for some mosquitos.

Best for what type of traveler?

This is a great tour for people that like extreme sports and living on the edge. It is also nice for people who want to have very active days but want to rest somewhere more comfortable than a tent. So if you are looking for adventure and experiences but don’t necessarily care about camping, this might be the tour for you.

 

What will you choose?

We hope that this article has helped you understand which route to Machu Picchu is best for you. Daspe Travel also provides some other tours to Machu Picchu. If you have any questions about the tours, please feel free to contact us at info@daspetravel.com or via our Contact Form.

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