Inca trail - Machu Picchu, Peru, 8 August 2013
Starting at km. 82, just few minutes out of the old town of Ollaytaytambo, the inca trail stretches for more than 35 kms through the Andes mountains.
The camino Inca proved to be a bit easier than what I’ve expected (coca leaves surely helped) and thankfully even less crowded than what I have feared, even though the real challenge is not getting sick along the track.
After 4 days of hiking through the Andes and several Inca sites (such as Q’entimarka, Yunkapata and Wynaywayna, all perched atop steep mountains, with the classical terraces for agriculture purposes) we arrived at the Inca city of Machupicchu, which dates back to the 1430 AD.
Even waking up at 3.30 am doesn’t guarantee that you get to the sites before the first flocks of tourist, but indeed the experience if coming down from the Sun Gate with Machupicchu slowly revealing itself is really worth the long hike, cold showers and precarious toilets.
On a side note, a run race was being held while we were hiking, with the top runners able to finish the entire Inca trail in about 5 hours!