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THE NEW ROUTES AROUND MACHU PICCHU

Written by:
Claire Dean

Published: 27-06-2024

It seems that the Machu Picchu rules are changing every other day! There are always different routes, different ways to buy the entrance tickets, and different rules about entering with a guide, for your Machu Picchu travel plans. From the 1st of June 2024, travelers on Machu Picchu tours can expect new tour circuits to get around this iconic citadel. These circuits have been put in place to offer a more personalized experience. The new Machu Picchu circuits will mean that you maybe have to do more research about exactly what you want to see on your Machu Picchu tours. However, these changes have been put in place to reduce the impact of humans on the site and preserve the archaeological complex for the future. Read on for some useful about what you need to know about the new Machu Picchu circuits, current prices, and booking information to make your vacation packages to Peru Machu Picchu, go with a bang!

 

Machu Picchu, the legendary Incan citadel, has introduced new routes to manage the flow of visitors and protect the UNESCO World Heritage site. These new circuits allow for a more detailed exploration of the site, ensuring that visitors can appreciate its grandeur, without having a negative impact on the site.

The One And Only Machu Picchu

 

What Are the Changes From June 2024? 

Beginning in June 2024, more Machu Picchu circuits have been introduced, meaning that visitors have to decide exactly, and ahead of time, what kind of Machu Picchu experience they are looking for. Each circuit around the site also has different costs and time slots. Based on popularity, some circuits will need to be booked as soon as possible, while others are expected to be available last minute.

 

Llamas are an iconic thing to see on your Peru Machu Picchu trip, adding charm and authenticity to Machu Picchu tours. Llamas were essential to the Inca civilization for transportation, wool, and meat. They were highly valued and often woven into Inca textiles. Our fluffy Friends have been integral to Andean life for centuries.

Llamas Enjoying The View


What are the new Routes Around Machu Picchu? 

There are three new circuits, each with a variety of sub-routes that provide hikers with different experiences. Of the ten circuits available, six will be available all year round, and four will only be available during the high tourist season (1 June to 15 October). Each Machu Picchu route allows travelers to explore different parts of the Inca citadel. Each circuit offers different panoramic views, caters to different fitness levels, and provides a unique perspective of the archaeological site.

 

The perfect photo on vacation packages to Peru Machu Picchu comes down to a combination of timing, location, and the correct camera equipment. The Guardhouse offers a panoramic view of the entire citadel to take the classic Machu Picchu shot that captures the terraces and the surrounding mountains.

The Perfect Photo!

 

Can I do more than one Machu Picchu circuit?

Yes, you can do a number of  Machu Picchu circuits on the same day, however, you will still need to buy a new ticket for each route and plan your timing perfectly. This can be challenging as circuit times will be more strictly enforced and will not allow for train delays or illness, for example.

 

If you do a Machu Picchu tour package in the wet season, the increased rainfall rejuvenates the flora, resulting in lush, green landscapes. The terraces, surrounding mountains, and vegetation appear more green, lush, and picturesque. The rainy season is ideal for observing various flowers and even orchids, in bloom, adding color and beauty to Machu Picchu.

Lush And Green Machu Picchu


Circuit 1: The Panoramic Circuit

1A : Machu Picchu mountain route
Entrance Times: 7am, 9am
General prices for foreigners – adult: S/.200.00 soles


This circuit offers the perfect mix of adventure and panoramic vistas. Beginning from the upper terraces, it allows you to climb Machu Picchu mountain, one of the best hikes inside the archaeological site. The Machu Picchu Mountain hike takes about 4 hours round trip, depending on your fitness. From the summit, you will be astounded by the stunning panoramic views of Machu Picchu and the surrounding mountains.

Circuits 1B to 1D

Entrance Times: Every hour from 6am to 3pm
General prices for foreigners – adult: S/.152.00 soles.

1B: Upper terraces Circuit

This route is ideal for those who are looking for a shorter walk. The circuit offers panoramic views from the upper terraces but doesn't include the urban area of Machu Picchu. It is the best circuit if you're looking to capture that perfect photo without having to hike for as long.

 

Circuit 1B

 

1C: Intipunku Circuit(high season only)

Also starting from the upper terraces, this route leads you to the Intipunku or "Sun Gate". This was the original entrance to Machu Picchu for those arriving from the Inca Trail. While you won't explore the urban area, the panoramic views along the way are more than enough to make up for it with stunning vistas.

1D: Puente Inka Circuit (high season only)

Beginning from the upper terraces, this route takes you to the Inca Bridge, where you can Marvel from above at the Vilcanota River. It’s a short, picturesque walk with historical significance, perfect for a leisurely morning visit on your  Machu Picchu tours.

 

If you doa Machu Picchu tour package in the wet season, the increased rainfall rejuvenates the flora, resulting in lush, green landscapes. The terraces, surrounding mountains, and vegetation appear more gren, lush and picturesque. The rainy season is ideal for observing various flowers and even orchids, in bloom, adding color and beauty to to Machu Picchu.

The Trail to The Sun Gate

 

Circuit 2: Inca City Route

2A: Classic Circuit

Entrance Times: Every hour from 6am to 3pm
General prices for foreigners – adult: S/.152.00 soles 

This is arguably the best circuit at Machu Picchu. This is the classic route that lets you capture the famous panoramic shot from the upper terraces, then walk through the urban area of Machu Picchu. You will then pass the main square, The Inti Huatana, and reach the Sacred Rock, near the Huayna Picchu entrance.

Circuit 2A

 

2B: Lower terrace route
This route starts from the lower terrace and allows you to explore the urban area. Similar to the classic route, you’ll still get that panoramic shot but from a slightly different angle. You’ll also pass through the main square, Inti Huatana, and the Sacred Rock, near the Huayna Picchu entrance.

 

"Intihuatana" comes from the Quechua words "inti" (sun) and "huatana" (to tie or hitch), often translated as "The Hitching Post of the Sun." The Intihuatana is located on circuit 2 in the Sacred Plaza at Machu Picchu. This stone is believed to have been used for astronomical, agricultural, and ceremonial purposes by the Incas.

The Sun Dial

 

Circuit 3: Royalty Route

3A: Huayna Picchu mountain Circuit

Entrance Times: 7am, 9am
General prices for foreigners – adult: S/.200.00 soles.

This route is for the adventurous traveler. You begin from the lower sector of Machu Picchu, then visit the Sun Temple, the Fountain Sector, the Inca Palace, and a section of the industrial sector. The highlight of course, is the Huayna Picchu Hike, which involves steep, narrow stairways and offers astonishing views. This hike is not for vertigo sufferers, due to the sheer drops, but it is worth every scary minute!

Circuits 3B to 3D

Entrance Times: Every hour from 6am to 3pm
General prices for foreigners – adult: S/.152.00 soles

3B: Royalty route

Similar to the Huayna Picchu circuit, this circuit begins from the lower part of Machu Picchu and follows the major highlights of Machu Picchu, such as the Temple of the Sun and the Sacred Rock, without the Huayna Picchu hike. It’s perfect for those who prefer a visit to this part of the site without the physical challenge of The Huayna Picchu Mountain.

 

Circuit 3B

3C: Great Cavern route (high season only)

This circuit visits the Great Cave as part of the Huayna Picchu Mountain hike. It requires a good level of physical fitness but offers a completely different perspective of the archaeological site.

3D: Huchuy Picchu route (high season only)

This circuit is less difficult than the Huayna Picchu climb and leads to the summit of Huchuy Picchu. You’ll pass along similar sights such as the Temple of the Sun and the Sacred Rock, but with gentler ascents.

 

Huayna Picchu is the giant mountain behind Machu Picchu. Climbing Huayna Picchu offers an adventurous hike with spectacular views from a completely different perspective. Found to the north of Machu Picchu, it is the main mountain that often appears in photographs of your Machu Picchu tour packages.

The Top of Huayna Picchu

 

How to Secure a Ticket to Machu Pichu 

At this time, there are only two official ways to get a ticket to Machu Picchu. You can buy your ticket at Centro Cultural Machu Picchu in Aguas Calientes in person (which is risky due to the last-minute availability), or purchase it online through the Ministry of Tourism website.  This option is best for planning ahead and choosing the perfect Machu Picchu route.

 

Machu Picchu is often regarded as a place of spiritual energy.  Many visitors and local people believe that the ancient Inca site holds unique energetic powers that contribute to its mysticism. Structures like the Intihuatana, the Temple of the Sun, and the Room of the Three Windows are believed to serve as astronomical observatories adding to the mystical vibe.

Absorbing The Energy

Of course, you can book a Machu Picchu vacation package with Valencia Travel. We will take the stress out of booking the entrance tickets and offer advice about which circuit is best for you on your Machu Picchu tours. Contact us here!
 

 

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