How To Get To Machu Picchu From Cusco

Being one of the Seven New Wonders of the World, the only untouched remain Inca City in Peru, and a UNESCO World Heritage site,  Machu Picchu   has been a renowned place to travel for those who seek beauty beyond belief.

About thousands or even millions of people come to tour the ancient Inca ruins in the Peruvian hinterland. However, reaching this awesome hilltop views, complex yet detailed stone constructions, and huge agricultural terraces is tricky and sometimes expensive. Here are the three general ways on how to get to  Machu Picchu   from Cusco:

  • 1) Taking the Bus from Cusco to Machu Picchu
  • 2) Taking the Train from Cusco to Machu Picchu
  • 3) Hiking from Cusco to Machu Picchu

1) Taking the Bus from Cusco to Machu Picchu

This is the only mode of transportation that connects  Machu Picchu   with the town of Aguas Calientes which also makes it possible to ride the bus from Cusco to the ruins itself.

Cusco: Find local activities
Cusco: Find local activities

Even though this is not the safest and comfortable option, this is without a doubt the cheapest one hence makes this the ideal alternative for budget travelers. There are three ways on how to take the bus that will lead you to Machu Picchu.

  • a) Bus to Hidroelectrica - from Terminal Santiago in Cusco get on the bus to Quillabamba. After about three hours, get out at Santa Maria and go on another bus to Santa Teresa which is approximately an hour ride. From Santa Teresa, go to the Hydroelectric plan via a local taxi and you can walk from there for about 6 kilometers since it is the closest road to the ruins. Yet travelers must allot almost a day for this kind of transit so it is advised to leave and start traveling before 7 am.
  • b) Bus to Ollantaytambo - this option starts at taking the bus to Ollantaytambo and taking the train to reach the ruins. It is better to book your train ticket in advance.
  • c) Bus from Aguas Calientes - either by bus or train, travelers will reach the town of Aguas Calientes where you can also take the bus to Machu Picchu.
Bus Cusco To Machu Picchu | Direct Service only $29.99‎

2) Taking the Train from Cusco to Machu Picchu

This is probably the fastest and easiest way to reach the ruins. Depending on your current location, you can catch the train in Ollantaytambo or Cusco.

You should book your train ticket in advance and be aware that the Cusco train station is in Poroy which is 20 minutes ride from Cusco center hence plan your time effectively since it is mandatory to be on the station 30 minutes before departure for registration.

Also, keep in mind that the baggage limit on all trains is only 5kg per person and to be allowed to bring bigger luggage travelers are required to contact PeruRail in advance.

There are two companies offering train trips to Machu Picchu, make sure that you are booking with the right one.

Peru rail trains to Machu Picchu
Inca Rail: Train from Cusco to Machu Picchu
Beautiful day at the Machu Picchu

3) Hiking from Cusco to Machu Picchu

This is a great option for those who love to hike or just want to be adventurous all in all. Inca Trail or Camino Inca is the well-known route to  Machu Picchu   and would take almost four to five days to trek the 82 kilometers distance.

This is option is not cheap and only limited to several people per day and trekkers must buy a ticket to start the Inca Trail. There are other options to start the hiking and it all depends on your preferred duration and itinerary.

Inca Trail Peru Information - Trekkers Guide to the Inca Trail

How to get to Machu Piccu in short

Cusco to  Machu Picchu   distance is 73 km, and the length of the road is approximately 210.2 km. The road is really long and it will take about 4 hours 49 minutes to overcome it.

Ancient stones keep their secrets, Time has no power over them.

We will give you advice on when to go to Machu Picchu. During the dry season, this is the best time to travel to Machu Picchu; that is, between April and October, the months in which the days are sunny, maybe sometimes rainy and isolated.

These travel options can help you plan your vacation to  Machu Picchu   and fully experience the wonders that this astonishing place has to offer.

By either taking the bus, the train, or by hiking there, you'll have plenty of options for different budgets to allow you to visit one the world's wonders.

A day trip from Cusco to  Machu Picchu   with bus to Ollantaytambo, train to Aguas Calientes and bus to  Machu Picchu   can costs $239 with travel companies such as Bloody Bueno Peru, and is the fastest way to get to  Machu Picchu   from Cusco.

However, our recommandation is to keep your baggage safe somewhere in Cusco, go to stay a night in Aguas Calientes, and come back the day after in the evening, to enjoy your  Machu Picchu   visit for a whole day.

Bloody Bueno Pero travel agency in Cusco

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the various transportation options for getting to Machu Picchu from Cusco, and what are the pros and cons of each method?
Options include train services, trekking routes like the Inca Trail, and bus-and-hike combinations. Trains offer convenience and comfort, trekking provides a historic and adventurous experience, and bus-and-hike options are more economical.

Lama going around Machu Picchu Peru

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