Machu Picchu, Peru
Get a serious glute workout on your way up to the breathtaking Incan ruins
Hiking through the magical ruins of Machu Picchu will make you feel like you have traveled to a different world. Perched at 8,000 feet, you can venture up the famous 26-mile Inca Trail or take a bus from Machu Picchu Pueblo, a town at the base of the mountain. Machu Picchu’s beauty lies in its lush mountain scenery, subtropical jungle climate, cloud-forest coverage, and the stunning Incan ruins.
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After hiking up the massive Machu Picchu trail, your entire body will be in dire need of some much-deserved pampering. Reward yourself with a sweet soak in the natural hot springs at Aguas Calientes when you return to Machu Picchu Pueblo.
Spend a day perusing the Peruvian market of Pisac! With colorful garments made of Alpaca wool or Vicuna, you can leave with handfuls of ceramics, painted beads, and ponchos handmade by the native Incans!
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Experienced hikers, strut your stuff over to Huayna Picchu. The narrow path will take some time to complete, but the view of Machu Picchu Citadel will be well worth it! For all you adventurous souls, head to the Temple of the Moon to top off your workout.
Take a multi-day horseback trip around the Incan ruins. The narrated tour (no, the horse isn’t narrating) will teach you about the history of the land and lead you to some seriously fab views. No need to be an expert equestrian, since the Peruvian guides will help you!
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This heart-pumping ride is one of the longest, highest, and fastest ziplines in South America. Sure to get your adrenaline going, riders are harnessed to a line and fly over the lush canopies. A must try!
Grab a Drink
Serious hikes require serious post-hike hydration. After hitting up these trails we bet you will be thirsty! Relax and have a drink at one of the many bars in Av Pachacutec. To enjoy the fresh mountain air, stop in at Tezao restaurant and bar, where you can sip your drinks on an open terrace.
What to Pack:
- Sturdy walking/hiking shoes and rain gear as the steps of Machu Picchu can get very slippery.
- Lots of layers, including a waterproof windbreaker or jacket. Weather can vary from rainy to extremely hot in a matter of hours.
- Reusable water bottle to stay hydrated while ascending the mountain.
How to Get Around:
- To get to Machu Picchu, travelers first can take a train to Machu Picchu Pueblo, the town at the base of the mountain. The town itself is a walking town.
- There are buses that go directly up to Machu Picchu (about 20 minutes) from Machu Picchu Pueblo, leaving as early as 4 a.m. Travelers can also trek the Inca Trail, the ancient mountain path to Machu Picchu that is considered one of the best hikes in the Andes.
P.S. We’re not done traveling yet! Check out the six other fab locations you can tour with Contiki in the FabFitFun Travel Guide.
Posted on April 24, 2012