To Cusco and Aguas Calientes   Leave a comment

Wednesday 24 September 2014

For the 388 kilometres from Puno to Cusco we treat ourselves to a luxury bus –


Ruta 3S

They are too modest, those Peruvians…

The legendary Andean Explorer

We head straight for the Hotel Marani where I stayed the last time and are in for a big surprise – the hotel has changed name and ownership and belongs now to a sort of chain – and they charge triple the price! I’m also annoyed that they quote me in US dollars; we are in Peru, are we not? What a disappointment. We find accommodation elsewhere, close to the Plaza San Blas, which is not bad but nothing to write home about.

At the tourist information we enquire how we best get to Machu Picchu, where to buy the entrance and the train tickets (there is no road to Aguas Calientes at the bottom of the Inka City). We could organise everything ourselves, like I did in 2010, but it would cost us another day, so we decide to splash out and book a tour. Although it’s already 19.00 hrs, the agency can sort out all the documents that evening and we can set off the following morning – that’s worthwhile the additional cost, we think, and the price also includes accommodation in Aguas Calientes and a professional tour guide.

On our stroll through Cusco’s back streets we stumble across a typical eatery where we seem to be the only foreigners – the food is cheap and plentiful.

We enjoy ‘Bistek a lo pobre’ – which is anything but…


Thursday 25 September 2014

The next morning we leave our laundry with a Lavanderia near our hostal.

And walk via the Plaza de Armas –

– to the tour agency, where we just have to board the bus – it’s that simple.

Off we go

On the outskirts of Cusco

We drive over the mountains into the Valle Sagrado – the Sacred Valley of the Incas



Here every tourist has to board the train

The railway follows the gorge of the Río Urubamba

Aguas Calientes

Very touristy, as you can imagine

Still, I always wanted to stay a night here to be able to see Machu Picchu either before the day tours from Cusco arrive or after they have left

There is a downhill competition in town

We follow the river towards the climb to Machu Picchu.

At 2,040 metres Aguas Calientes lies 1,400 metres lower than Cusco and thus the vegetation is richer and more colourful

Early tomorrow morning we’ll be up there…

We cannot wait!

Posted 30 September 2014 by Pumpy in Peru, The 2014 Rucksack Trip

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