Machu Picchu

On Saturday 26th May, I got up at 4 am and 20 minutes later I was in the already quite long queue for the bus up to Machu Picchu. I had a nice conversation with an English guy and his Bolivian girlfriend behind me and exactly at 5.30 the shuttle buses started to pick up the waiting. I was the first to board one of them and ended up sitting next to a gentleman from Friedrichshafen, whose son just got married to a Peruvian girl. Before entering the site, I used the toilets situated outside. Even with my Rucksack, that was 8l too big than the allowed size, and my ticket stating I was from Afghanistan, I had no trouble getting in. I took a few pictures of the impressive Inka site before making my way to the gate for Machu Picchu Montaña.

At 7 o’clock sharp they opened and I was the 4th person signing in.

The steep treck mainly consisted of stone steps and it was quite hard work to climb up but the views were magnificent and I took a lot of pictures.

90 minutes later I reached the top as the 16th, which I thought wasn’t too bad.

After half an hour’s rest and taking  even more fotos, I started walking down, which took me an hour.

My knees weren’t happy and it was already quite hot, but nevertheless I decided to walk to the Sun Gate as well, which took me 45 minutes each way and provided a different view of Machu Picchu.

Around 11.30 I was shattered and finally started exploring Machu Picchu with a lot of other tourists.

I decided not to go outside again to find a guide, but did it on my own and often listened in on passing groups.

At 1 pm I got the stamp in my passport and bought the bus ticket back down as I couldn’t walk any more.

Again I had to queue for the bus, but this time only 30 minutes. Finally back in Aguas Calientes I was starving and went straight to the restaurant where I had dinner the night before. Guinea pigs have been an important part of the Peruvian diet for thousands of years, but I couldn’t face eating one lying fried on the plate so I ordered pizza with supposedly guinea pig meat, but it could have been any ham. Back at the hotel I went straight to bed, and after a little snooze into the bath tub. For dinner I went to a French restaurant around the corner and was the only guest there. I ordered a three course menu and a pisco sour and had a chat with the owner.

The next day I had one of the worst breakfasts on this whole trip, checked out of my room and rang my parents. Then I went to a French café and did some blogging. For lunch I went to another French restaurant and had a delicious three course meal.

I watched some festivities going on in the main square and went back to the hotel to get my things, before heading to the train station. During the 3 1/2 h journey to Cusco I sat next to a guy from Murcia who spoke so fast and with such a terrible accent that I really had to concentrate and still only understood about half of what he said.

At 7 pm we arrived at the train station outside Cusco and shared a taxi into town. I had to climb 55 steps to get to my hotel, but the room I got

with this view over Cusco was worth the effort.