Salcantay - Machu Picchu // D4
There's not much to say about Machu Picchu other than you have to go and experience it for yourself. The Inca's believed rivers flowed with good energy, there is a river looping around the base of Machu Picchu creating the shape of a horse shoe, meaning the good energy would always circulate and stay in the mountain. In addition to its hidden properties the flow of energy is why Machu Picchu was built.
Everything that radiates up here is pure, it has been compromised by the amount of tourists, but there's no less to be expected from any other landmark in the world anymore. I have been to Machu Picchu several times as I was growing up, with my family, friends and as a school trip once. This is the first time I felt I earned seeing it, the 4 day walk from Salcantay made the appreciation of the sight notoriously greater.
We woke up at 4:30AM and were in the bus station to get up by 4:45AM, there was already a great line which wasn't surprising at all. It was amazing to see the diversity of people there, not only culturally but just in every way conceivable, couples, loners, whole families, groggy but exited to see what the Incas had built. We were the third bus up, arriving at around 6:00AM, we met with some of the friends we had met last night and walked in through the security checkpoint. As we walked pass the people waiting the ruins started to uncover slowly with some mist and fog still hovering on top of them, teasing us.
We walked around the city trying to learn as much as possible, our guide was shy and inexperienced so we decided to go off on our own. Our entrance time for the Huayna Picchu mountain was at 8:00AM so we headed there and started our ascend. We made it up quite quickly, the three previous days had prepared us well. Once we were at the top we decided to just hangout at the peak taking in what we had accomplished the last few days. Machu Picchu seemed small from where we stood and all of our worries distant.
We decided to take the long way back to Machu Picchu, through the temple of the moon, the trek was amazing and extremely peaceful, no other tourists were there and it was exactly what we were missing throughout the trip, we got lost and were pretty sure that we weren't going back in the right direction, but we kept going through the path. We finally reached the temple of the moon, it wasn't as grand as we thought it would be but the journey and deviation from the regular path made it worth it.
We headed back to Aguas calientes walking. It took us about an hour to get back from Machu Picchu, it wasn't even noon yet and our train left at 7:30PM, so we had a pretty relaxing day while we waited to go back to Cusco. We ate some amazing Peruvian food for lunch, and dropped our stuff at the hostels lockers. We then walked up to the top of the city where the natural hot spring are and stayed there for about 2 hours. We met two very nice tourists who decided to join us for a post adventure beer afternoon, and we all shared stories and drank until it was time to go back to Cuzco.
The drive back to Cuzco was filled with near death experiences on a "Kombi" bus, and the more the passengers asked the driver to slow down or drive carefully, the more aggressively he drove. But after two and half hours of small heart attacks we made it safely and basically went straight to bed with aching bodies but engraved smiles.