WHAT DOES THE PROJECT DO?
Experience the delights of the ancient world of the Incas and the archaeological remains left behind. Take the train from Cusco and be left speechless by the beautiful natural scenery surrounding you as the train winds its way up valleys and through the cloud forest to the town of Aguas Calientes. The town is famous for two reasons, its hot springs and as the gateway to the majestic Inca citadel of Machu Picchu.
You will have the chance to see the sunrise over this ancient city and be taken on a guided tour of the most important Incan archaeological sites in Machu Picchu, giving you the chance to learn more about this fascinating civilisation.
WHAT WILL I BE DOING?
Day 1: Cusco to Aguas Calientes
It’s straight in from the word go! Day one starts with a guided tour of the Sacred Valley of the Incas and a hike around the archaeological Pisac Ruins site before stopping at the Market in Pisac to admire the picture perfect scenery of the fertile Andean lands and to experience ancestral customs and traditions displayed by the locals. You will then get to enjoy the magical ambiance in the Valley of Urubamba and Yucay Town all before lunchtime! After a lunch break in Urubamba town, you will continue on to explore the impressive temples and edifications of Ollantaytambo, the living Inca village. In the late afternoon it’s time to board the train to Aguas Calientes. Once onboard you can sit back and enjoy the ride with breathtaking views of steep sided valleys, often dramatically terraced by the Incas for farming, snow capped mountains, sub-tropical jungle and from Pachar onwards, the sacred Vilcanota river. After being transferred to your accommodation in Aguas Calientes, there will be dinner and a short briefing offered by your guide for your Machu Picchu’s visit the following morning.
Day 2: Machu Picchu and return to Aguas Calientes
It’s an early start on day two as you jump on the bus to get to Machu Picchu in time to see the sun rise. Machu Picchu is huge so you will spend most of the morning on a guided tour with an expert guide exploring this magnificent citadel taking in all the significant archaeological sites and the awe inspiring views. After your informative guided tour you will have plenty of free time for more exploration. You could go on one of the many short hikes surrounding Machu Picchu. Walk to Intipunku (the Sun Gate) where the famous Inca Trail ends, visit the Inca Bridge, or climb Huayna Picchu (the young mountain) for outstanding views back down to the ruined city. Your guide will advise you of where and when to meet to walk back down to Aguas Calientes for your second night. At Puente Ruinas Bridge there may be time visit a small museum dedicated to Machu Picchu and discover the Orchid Garden. There will be time to unwind after a big day with the option of relaxing your muscles by visiting the Hot Springs that give Aguas Calientes its name.
Day 3: Aguas Calientes to Cusco
Day three is much more relaxed after a busy two days. After a more civilised breakfast time, you will get the train back to Ollantaymbo. Many people love to have another look around as it is such a lovely town. You may wish to enjoy lunch there before taking the bus back to Cusco in the afternoon.