Thinking about traveling to Machu Picchu? The most popular way to get there from Cusco is by train, though you must take a few other methods of transportation as well. There are only a couple of places to board the train from — the most common is Ollantaytambo Station. Located in the last village of the Sacred Valley, Ollantaytambo Station is the perfect spot to board your train from Cusco to Machu Picchu after you tour the Sacred Valley.
If you are traveling from Cusco to Ollantaytambo, you will have a few options to choose from. The cheapest and most convenient way is taking a shuttle bus from Avenida Grau. This will typically be $3-4 USD per person and will take about an hour and 45 minutes. However, you will have to wait until the shuttle fills up with passengers, as there is no set departure schedule. For a quick ride, you may take a taxi, but expect to pay $25-$30 USD. For the cheapest ride, you may take a public bus. Although the ride is less than $2 USD, this is the longest and most complicated route and is not recommended!
From there, you will catch your train to Machu Picchu at Ollantaytambo. You must arrive at the station at least 30 minutes before departure. During the peak months from May through September, reservations must be made in advance. Trains depart at least every one or two hours, if not more frequently, so you will have no problem finding a train that suits your schedule.
Your adventure begins the moment you board the train to Ollantaytambo! Wind past the breathtaking Vilcanota River, traveling around snow-capped mountain peaks, across expansive fields, and through lush forests. Machu Picchu will not be your only destination; the train ride to get there will be too. So kick back, relax, and admire the stunning scenery on your hour-and-a-half long journey from Cusco to Machu Picchu.
Once you reach Aguas Calientes, a breathtaking town on the Urubamba River Valley, prepare to make your way to the top of Machu Picchu. Busses typically depart every 10 minutes and will set you back roughly $10 each way. If you are in good shape, you can trek up the mountain instead! This is a moderately challenging hike which will take you around an hour and a half.
Prepare to reach Machu Picchu! Admire the extraordinary beauty and mystery of the ancient Incan Citadel along with its surrounding mountain scenery.
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