The Land of Wonder

Machu Picchu is one of the most astonishing archaeological sites you will visit and therefore, never forget.

In this blog post I will share some tips, recommendations, information, pictures and experiences while visiting Machu Picchu.

What to wear:

  1. Pants (to protect you from mosquitos).
  2. Hat or cap.
  3. Jacket/sweatshirt.
  4. Short sleeved shirt.
  5. Hiking/running shoes.
  6. Ankle length socks.

We arrived to the Peru Rail train station in Ollantaytambo and awaited for the “E” train to arrive. When we heard a loud and screechy noise approximate us we instantly knew that it was the train.

Boarding the train gave me goosebumps. Once the train started moving I looked at the open window. It was so mesmerizing. The train crew members gave us some information about Machu Picchu. I heard them say words like “known as a cloud forest ecosystem”, “home for various animals”, “gallito de las rocas” and “oso de anteojos”.

When the train stopped I knew we had arrived to “Aguas Calientes”. We then entered the buses.

When we reached the top, we ate lunch at a restaurant called “The Sanctuary Lodge”. Once we were done we started the hike. We were 2450 meters above sea level. It was a sunny day, but I knew that the weather could change at any instant. I saw green filled mountains and everything around me was living. It was a fresh open space, no flashing lights, car noises or anything city-like. The plants around me were beautiful. Different shades of green such as moss, olive, sage and lime were seen in plants, ferns, shrubs, bushes and trees. I saw orchids and bromeliads that illustrated colours like violet, magenta and lavender.

If you bring a daypack you might want to pack:

  1. Sunscreen.
  2. A water bottle.
  3. A rain poncho or umbrella.
  4. Bug spray (remember, this is kind of like a jungle).
  5. SPF chapstick.
  6. Sunglasses.
  7. Hair ties.
  8. Money in cash (small bills and coins).
  9. Camera.
  10. Lemon/coca leaf candies.
  11. Light snack.

After reaching the “top” I saw Machu Picchu. It was such a hypnotizing panorama. As the radiating sun stopped glistening, the grey and white cotton-ball like clouds started to make a subtle transition into the morning sky. I took the time to take pictures with my friends and the whole grade level. I then felt tiny and round droplets of water fall softly onto my blue clothing. I took every chance I had to take a snapshot of the views as well as listen to everything my guide told me.

Recommendations:

  1. Always listen to your guide!
  2. Be aware of the changing weather!
  3. Bring a backpack to carry your things, but less is better (remember you will be walking all day).
  4. Don’t be afraid to take breaks in between hikes.
  5. Stop and take pictures!

Everything felt surreal. Standing there, were my ancestors once stood was so penetrating. I was so amazed by the infrastructures, architecture and everything really. We saw many houses, sanctuaries, temples, sacred range of mountains, spiritual inca centers, and so on.

When we left Machu Picchu I felt happy. I embarked the train with more experiences soon to be shared. For me, Machu Picchu, or old peak in Quechua, was the land of wonder. I came there with many expectations, but left breath taken with what I had seen and felt. All the stories behind it were intriguing and filled with mystery. I will forever remember this day as if it had happened yesterday.

I took a chance and can now cross another check of my “7 Wonders of the World I’ve Visited” list. Can you?

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