Caresse's 2007 Adventure to Ecuador and Peru travel blog

Machu Picchu

Peaking through a 500 year old Inka window

More of Machu Picchu

Llama and me

Checking out the view

Another 4:45 am start! This is getting ridiculous! Luckily, we have a relaxing 4 hour train ride with spectacular views on the way to the town of Aguas Calientes (which translates to hot water in English). We footed the extra cost and paid for the Vista Dome train, which has better views, nicer seats and food and beverage service. A nice treat! The town is directly on the banks of a raging river and is surrounded by huge domed mountains. We spend the rest of the day wandering around the small town and shopping in the local market.

Feb. 22

Up at 5:00 am again. I guess its not so bad when you have somewhere as spectacular as Machu Picchu to go to. Its a beautiful sunny day and its midweek so we've managed to avoid the usual crowds of people. Our guide first takes us on a steep trail to get a good overview of the site and to take the classic photo. Its important to do this early, as there's a thick mist and layer of cloud that moves through the site as the day progresses. The ruins are mind boggling and its almost unbelievable that humans could build and inhabit such a remove site without mechanization. Archeologists still don't know much about the ruins as there's never been any written documentation found. I know even less about the site as I have to admit I've forgotten most of what I learned that day. I'll blame it on the altitude and lack of sleep. Good thing I bought the souvenir book!

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