Post 3 of 4. The reason why we came to Peru – Machu Picchu!! And lucky for us, we were able to spend our actual anniversary, June 7, at Machu Picchu.
We took the Perurail train from Cusco to Machu Picchu, the view on the way there was absolutely breathtaking. Both Peter and myself had brought books to read on the ride, neither one of us picked up our books, the scenery was far better than anything in those books.
Let me be totally honest, we did not do the 4 day overnight Inca trail, we stayed at the Belmond Sanctuary Lodge. I was all about exploring and hiking, but not camping, or glamping 😉 The Sanctuary Lodge is the only hotel located adjacent to the Inca ruins which gave us amazing access to the ancient ruins.
We didn’t even unpack our bags, we immediately went exploring the Machu Picchu ruins. Again, our guide, Jose, was so knowledgable and passionate, making each moment so special.
June 7th, our 10 year anniversary – we woke up at 5 AM to be one of the first in line when the park opened. We wanted to experience sunrise at The Sun Gate. The Sun Gate was once a guardhouse that marked the principle entrance to Machu Picchu. It is where the hikers from the 4 day classic Inca Trail entering Machu Picchu get their first glimpse of the ruins. It was pretty amazing and totally worth the early wake up call!!
After that early morning hike, we headed back down to the hotel and grabbed a huge, delicious breakfast. Next on the agenda was conquering Wayna Picchu. Wayna Picchu’s peak is 8,835 above sea level and is approximately 850 feet higher than Machu Picchu mountain. Peter and I really debated on whether to do this climb, he and I both have become frightened of heights the older we get. At the end of the day, we knew we would regret not doing it…how many times would we have this amazing opportunity?
Let me put it this way – it was INCREDIBLE, we are glad we did it, but it was SCARY as HE**. Glad we did it, it’s checked off the bucket list and we NEVER need to do that again!!!
We were greeted by alpacas when we came down. The humor we needed after being scared for our lives coming down that mountain!!
We took the Hiram Bingham train from Machu Picchu to Cusco…talk about a train ride of a lifetime. We had an amazing time dancing to the live band, enjoying delicious drinks and a fantastic dinner. This train ride was definitely one of the highlights of our trip and I highly recommend taking it if you have the opportunity.
Next post, 4of 4, will be on the city of Cusco.