Even if you do not want to do a trek or you don’t have the time, Machu Picchu itself is still an amazing site to see and actually has several “hiking” options within the site available to you. The site of Machu Picchu can be broken down into 5 sections: Machu Picchu City, the Sun Gate, the Inca Bridge, Huayna Picchu, and Machu Picchu Mountain.
1) Machu Picchu City
This is the main section of Machu Picchu. No matter what itinerary you choose, we will provide a 2 hour walking tour of the city so you can learn about all of the buildings and how the Incas developed the architecture of the city. This will include the princess’s quarters, the water mirrors, the temple of the 3 windows, the sun dial, and the guard house. This is the main attraction to Machu Picchu and you really could spend a full day just walking around the city center.
2) The Sun Gate
An easy uphill walk for an hour and a half round trip will take you to the Sun Gate which is where the Incas would enter Machu Picchu from the Inca Trail. On a clear day, you can see the entire city of Machu Picchu and the system of trails and roadway access points. A must see if you have the time and energy.
3) The Inca Bridge
You can no longer cross the Inca bridge due to wear and tear, but you can see the narrow bridge the Incas used to enter Machu Picchu from the north. It’s only a 15 minute walk from the Guard House, so it’s an easy bonus site if you’re interested.
4) Huayna Picchu Mountain
When you look at a picture of Machu Picchu city, Huayna Picchu Mountain is the large, beautiful mountain that is always in the background. For an additional fee, you can climb this mountain with narrow paths and Inca stairs for an extremely rare look at Machu Picchu city from the very top. It is about a two-hour, challenging round trip hike that must be booked in advance. Only 400 people are allowed to climb everyday due to limited space at the top.
5) Machu Picchu Mountain
When you stand looking out onto Huayna Picchu Mountain, Machu Picchu Mountain is the even bigger mountain sitting behind you. An extremely challenging 3.5 hour climb will take you to the top of the world where Machu Picchu city will look like an ant hill. This hike is also available for an additional fee that must be purchased in advance.