Yet another installment with little to nothing to do with food or cooking. I figured I could make another exception for my trip to the Sacred Valley, about 70 km from Cusco, Peru. And then a train ride to Machu Picchu. Not only was MP incredible, but so were the ruins at Ollantaytambo, and actually required more energy to climb.
Machu Picchu is one of the seven wonders of the world as selected by the New7Wonders Foundation. I can now say that I have been to 2 of them — the other being Petra, in Jordan. One could argue on and on about which ones deserve it, but regardless of its status, Machu Picchu is one of the most amazing places I have ever seen in my life, and maybe someday I’ll hike part of the Inca Trail and reach it the way the Incas intended.
One part of the journey that I will never forget is the fact that when our group arrived at the train, we were told that there had been an avalanche and that the tracks were covered 11 km’s ahead. They explained that workers were digging it out and that we would move out soon. Keep in mind the original departure time was 6:40 am and you can do the math on when we probably woke up (4:45, for those bad at math). We waited, and waited. Around 10:30, I actually thought we may not make it, as the ride was over an hour and then another 30 minutes bus ride to the top of the mountain. At 11:15, we got word that we were going to start the journey, for real this time…
The weather at Machu Picchu is very unpredictable and in the rainy season, which starts Dec. 23, it rains constantly. We were prepared and when we reached MP, it was cloudy, dark and rainy. However, after the 6 hour journey, I think we all were just happy to be there. About half way through the tour of the ancient city, the rain subsided, the sun came out and the clouds cleared.
There isn’t a lot I can say that can really describe the incredible mountain top city, temple, square and agricultural center, so I will just yield to some pictures and links to more pictures. Hope you enjoy!