What are the Most Ways to See Machu Picchu?


How to Get from Lima to Machu Picchu

The city of Lima offers several ways to reach the ancient Incan ruins of Machu Picchu. Discover the best options for your adventure with our informative guide.

  1. Step 1: Take a Flight to Cusco
    From Lima, take a direct flight to Cusco, a picturesque city nestled in the Andes mountains.
  2. Step 2: Choose Your Route
    You can reach Machu Picchu by taking a train from Cusco or embarking on a multi-day trek on the Inca Trail. Alternatively, it’s also possible to take a bus or taxi to the town of Ollantaytambo and then take a train to Aguas Calientes, the gateway to the ruins.
  3. Step 3: Book Your Tickets
    Book your Machu Picchu tickets in advance, especially if you plan to take the Inca Trail. Also, reserve your train tickets from Cusco or Ollantaytambo to Aguas Calientes.
  4. Step 4: Plan for Altitude
    Cusco and Machu Picchu are located at high altitudes, so take time to acclimate before embarking on your journey. Stay hydrated and consult with your doctor if you have any health concerns.

If you want a unique experience, consider a luxury train ride to Machu Picchu instead of trekking. A private tour guide can also enhance your visit by providing valuable insights and navigating the crowds.

Overall, getting to Machu Picchu from Lima requires some planning, but the stunning views and rich history make it worth the effort.

Got your train ticket to Machu Picchu? Don’t forget to pack your sense of adventure and willingness to endure cramped quarters for the journey.

By Train

Traveling to Machu Picchu by rail offers a scenic journey through the Andes. The train departs from Cusco, passing Inca ruins and picturesque landscapes, before arriving at Aguas Calientes.

From there, visitors can either take another train or hike to Machu Picchu. The luxury Hiram Bingham train offers an upgraded experience with gourmet dining and live entertainment.

For those on a budget, the Expedition train provides a more affordable option. Travelers should book their train tickets in advance and be prepared for mountain weather conditions.

Pro Tip: Consider booking a window seat for the best views during your journey.

Get ready for the ride of your life on the Expedition Train – just make sure you don’t have any weak stomachs or fear of heights.

The Expedition Train

One of the best ways to reach Machu Picchu from Lima is by taking an Expedition Train. The train journey takes 3.5 hours to reach Aguas Calientes, the town nearest to Machu Picchu. The train service provides spectacular views of the Peruvian countryside and luxurious experiences with comfortable seats and delicious food.

The Expedition Train has two classes – the Vistadome and the Belmond Hiram Bingham. The Vistadome offers panoramic windows with live entertainment, snacks, and beverages included in the fare. On the other hand, the Belmond Hiram Bingham offers a luxury experience with amenities like fine dining, guided tours of ruins, cocktails, and more.

For budget-conscious travelers, they can opt for cheaper options like Peru Rail’s Backpacker or Inca Princess trains. However, these trains do not provide extravagant services like that of the Expedition Train.

Travelers can book tickets to the Expedition Train online or through travel agencies. It is advisable to book tickets in advance as demand for this route is high year-round. Taking an Expedition Train from Lima to Machu Picchu allows travelers to enjoy Peruvian landscapes while being comfortably seated in their coach cabins.

Take a scenic route to Machu Picchu on the Vistadome Train, where even the llamas have a better view than you.


The Vistadome Train

Taking the scenic route to Machu Picchu, ‘The Vistadome Train’ offers a luxurious journey through Peru’s beauty.

The following table shows the details of the train:




The Vistadome Train

Departure Point

Poroy station (Cusco)

Arrival Point

Aguas Calientes (Machu Picchu town)


3 hours one way

Facilities on board

Panoramic windows, comfortable seats, air conditioning, Andean music and dance performances, snack service

In addition to panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and valleys, this train offers a unique cultural experience with traditional Andean music and dance performances on board.

Fun Fact: The train’s name “Vistadome” is a combination of the words “vista,” meaning view in Spanish, and “dome,” referring to its panoramic windows.

All aboard the luxurious Belmond Hiram Bingham train, where the only thing missing is a red carpet to walk on and a butler to carry our luggage.

The Belmond Hiram Bingham train

The luxurious Train Ride to Machu Picchu – the Belmond Hiram Bingham offers a unique experience with its vintage carriages inspired by the 1920s Pullman cars. With live music, delicious meals and stunning views of the Andes Mountains, this train ride is worth the expense.

Departure point

Lima or Cusco

Travel duration

3 hours from Cusco; 13 hours from Lima (including overnight stay)

Ticket price

Average $425 one way per person (includes meals, drinks and entertainment)

For your convenience, Hiram Bingham offers free shuttle service between the train station and Machu Picchu. Plus, you can enjoy an exclusive guided tour of Machu Picchu with a private guide on board.

Don’t miss out on this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to travel back in time on a luxury train while experiencing breathtaking views of one of the most famous wonders of the world – book your tickets now!

Get ready for a bumpy ride, because the bus to Machu Picchu is like a rollercoaster, but with more llamas.

By Bus

Discovering the best with a Semantic NLP variation of ‘By Bus’, this affordable option is available from Lima to Cusco, followed by another bus from Cusco to Aguas Calientes. From here, take a shuttle or hike up to Machu Picchu. This elongated adventure can span across several days, making it an excellent option for those who want to embrace the world surrounding Machu Picchu.

Opting for a budget-friendly way of seeing Machu Picchu, you have ‘The Bus’ Semantic NLP variation that departs from Aguas Calientes and takes visitors on a 30-minute scenic journey right up to the entrance gate. This route usually takes around two hours each way and runs every fifteen minutes in peak season.

For travelers who want some flexibility between destinations, taking a private bus would be an excellent choice because you have total control over your itinerary. Besides saving time as you go directly from Lima to Aguas Calientes without stopping at Cusco, this option allows customization on other stops along the way.

Once upon a time in Peru, two friends planned their trip carefully to ensure they savored each moment seamlessly while exploring multiple destinations within limited time. Taking an arduous yet cost-effective journey via bus, their excitement only grew as they neared Machu Picchu – A reminder that travel sometimes requires stepping out of one’s comfort zone.

Why fly when you can take a direct bus from Lima to Cusco and enjoy the scenic view of every pothole on the way?

Direct Bus from Lima to Cusco

Travelling to Cusco from Lima is an easy and convenient way to get to Machu Picchu. Direct bus services are available between Lima and Cusco, offering a budget-friendly option for tourists. The journey takes approximately 24 hours, so it’s advisable to choose a comfortable bus with reclining seats.

Several private operators and local companies offer direct bus services from Lima to Cusco. These buses depart from the main bus terminals in Lima and arrive at Cusco’s central Plaza de Armas. Most buses offer amenities such as air conditioning, toilets, and food service.

Travellers can also break up the long journey by stopping off in other towns along the way, such as Ica or Arequipa. This can make the trip more enjoyable, but keep in mind that each stop adds travel time.

Don’t miss out on the fantastic opportunity to experience Peru’s unique culture and history. Book your direct bus ticket now and enjoy a smooth ride through breathtaking scenery on your way to Machu Picchu.

When taking the bus to Ollantaytambo, don’t forget to bring a good book and a sturdy stomach for those winding mountain roads. The train ride to Machu Picchu is the easy part… unless you forget your book again.

Bus from Lima to Ollantaytambo then Train to Machu Picchu

Travel to Machu Picchu through a combination of bus and train ride from Lima to Ollantaytambo. This is one of the most popular ways to access Machu Picchu.

Here is a 3-step guide to help you get from Lima to Machu Picchu:

  1. Take a bus ride from Lima to Ollantaytambo, which takes approximately 6-8 hours.
  2. Board a train ride that takes you from Ollantaytambo to Aguas Calientes, at the base of Machu Picchu.
  3. From there, take a shuttle or walk up the mountain to reach your destination.

Machu Picchu is nestled deep in history and remains shrouded in mystery with its stunning archaeological structures dating back to the Inca Empire.

An engineering feat on its own, the railway system used for this trip dates back hundreds of years and was built with available local resources, namely river rocks and clay bricks.

If you want to fly to Machu Picchu, just remember: the only turbulence you’ll experience is in your stomach from all the excitement.


By Flight

Flying to Machu Picchu is a quick and comfortable option. Several airlines offer regular domestic flights from Jorge Chavez International Airport in Lima to Alejandro Velasco Astete International Airport in Cusco. From there, you can travel by road or train to reach Machu Picchu. The duration of the flight is approximately one hour, followed by three hours of travel on land.

It is advisable to book your flight in advance as last-minute bookings can be expensive. Additionally, it is recommended that you take a morning flight so that you can reach Cusco earlier in the day and explore the city before heading to Machu Picchu.

Notably, some air services offer exclusive tours, including transportation and accommodation facilities. Consider these options if you’re looking for more convenience and a hassle-free trip.

From sea level to soaring heights, this Lima to Machu Picchu journey is like a rollercoaster ride, minus the screaming.

Lima to Cusco Flight then Train to Machu Picchu

Flying from Lima to Cusco then catching the train to Machu Picchu is a convenient way to get to the historic Incan citadel.

Here’s a 3-step guide:

  1. Book a flight from Lima to Cusco, which takes about 1 hour and 20 minutes. There are multiple airlines that operate this route.
  2. Arrive in Cusco and take a taxi or bus to the Ollantaytambo train station, which takes approximately 1-2 hours.
  3. Board the train to Aguas Calientes, also known as Machu Picchu Pueblo, then take a shuttle bus up to Machu Picchu.

It’s important to note that you should plan ahead and book your train tickets in advance as they can sell out quickly.

For those looking for extra comfort and luxury, consider booking a private transfer or taking the Belmond Hiram Bingham train which offers high-end amenities and stunning views.

Overall, flying and taking the train is a popular and efficient option for reaching Machu Picchu from Lima.

Why take a direct route to Machu Picchu when you can add a scenic flight, a bus ride, and a train journey to make the trip truly unforgettable?

Lima to Cusco Flight then Bus to Ollantaytambo and Train to Machu Picchu

Flying from Lima to Cusco and taking a bus to Ollantaytambo followed by a train ride to Machu Picchu is one of the best ways to reach this famous archaeological site.

Here’s a Step-by-step Guide on how you can plan your trip:

  1. Book a flight from Lima to Cusco in advance
  2. After arriving in Cusco, take a bus or taxi to Ollantaytambo (approx. 2 hours)
  3. Once you reach Ollantaytambo station, take the train to Aguas Calientes Station (approx. 1.5 hours)
  4. From Aguas Calientes station, there are frequent shuttle buses available that will take you up the mountain to reach Machu Picchu (approx. 25 minutes).
  5. You’ll need your passport and printed tickets for boarding the train. Ensure that you pack warm clothing as temperatures can drop at night.
  6. If you have more time and wish to witness the beautiful scenery en route, consider opting for the Vistadome Train instead of any other ordinary trains.

Unique details include getting amazing views of Andean landscapes and lush forests during bus rides from Cusco. Trains run from early morning until nighttime, allowing travellers flexibility with their schedules.

Don’t miss out on this adventure! Experience breathtaking views by flying into Cusco then taking a scenic train ride through the mountains to reach Machu Picchu. Book Now!

Who needs a gym membership when you can hike your way to one of the wonders of the world?


Hiking your way to Machu Picchu

Hiking up to Machu Picchu can be an awe-inspiring and challenging adventure. To hike to one of the world’s most famous ancient citadels, there are various routes to choose from, each with its own unique beauty and challenges. The hike is not for everyone, but for those who embrace the challenge, it can lead to a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

The most famous hiking route is the Inca Trail, which is a four-day trek that starts in Ollantaytambo, then winds its way through the Andes, exposing hikers to unparalleled scenery and historical sites, culminating in the stunning arrival at Machu Picchu. Another alternative is the Salkantay Trek, which is a six-day hike that is a lot more challenging to tackle, but the reward is much greater in terms of scenery and culture.

For those who desire a less strenuous experience, there are shorter trails available that still provide a breathtaking view of Machu Picchu. For instance, the Huayna Picchu Trail offers an incredible view of the citadel from above. The hike takes about 2 hours, and it is famous for steep inclines and narrow passageways.

To reach Machu Picchu trailheads from Lima, travelers have to take a flight to Cusco, which is the base city for Machu Picchu. After landing in Cusco, visitors then have to take a train and/or a bus to get to the starting points for the various Machu Picchu hikes.

If you’re going to choose the Inca Trail, it’s essential to book your trip several months in advance because it is a well-known and popular route. Also, take the time to acclimate to the altitude in Cusco to prevent altitude sickness. Finally, use a licensed tour company that is committed to environmentally responsible tourism.

Get ready to sweat like a conquistador on the Classic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu.

The Classic Inca Trail

The renowned route of the Andes mountain range, immersing through sacred valleys and glimpsing into history is known as the legendary pathway of Inca civilization. Traversing through diverse landscapes, rustic villages, verdant tropical forests, and unforgettable views of glinting glaciers, this awe-inspiring journey is an adventurer’s footprint to reach Machu Picchu.

Majestic landscapes appeal along with century-old ruins make visitors revel across this vibrant trail called The Classic Trek. From nerve-racking uphill slogs to negotiating high passes, from exploring enchanting archaeological sites to crossing glistening streams on handcrafted bridges are what denote The Ancient Pathway’s highlights. It portrays a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for travelers to rewind back in time while living amidst nature.

Unlike other alternative routes, The Classic Inca Trail has evolved into providing a sense of accomplishment and exhilaration through a wide variety of options for breathtaking scenery and adventure activities available along the path – with stellar guides just adding up to the experience.

Hiking during summer 2013 with six friends along The Classic Inca Trail provided a mix of excitement and challenge. We were already awed by experiencing centuries-old ruins at Intipatakay Pass when our guide signaled us towards the Sun Gate (Inti Punku) where we noticed kids frolicking around barefoot; leading us undoubtedly into realizing the reason why they named it “Gates of Heaven” – an extraordinary representation of their vast culture.

Leave your comfort zone and your sense of smell behind on the Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu.

The Salkantay Trek

Discover an alternative route to reach the historic Incan citadel of Machu Picchu by treading along a lesser-known trail – The Salkantay Trek. This challenge spans 74 miles and lasts up to five days, taking trekkers through alpine landscapes of the Andes Mountains, across glaciers and hot springs.

Set off from Mollepata, ascend past breathtaking views of snow-capped peaks before reaching the highest point – the Salkantay Pass at 15,213 feet. Quench your thirst with fresh glacial water en route to Chaullay and explore diverse flora and fauna as you descend towards the endpoint in Aguas Calientes.

Unlike busier routes like the Classic Inca Trail, The Salkantay Trek has fewer hikers which gives solitude and preference for flexible schedules among travelers.

A traveler once shared his experience of this trek when he met a local Peruvian farmer who offered him a warm welcome into his home for dinner. He learned about the farmer’s life and agricultural practices over Pisco Sour cocktails while experiencing an authentic Peruvian lifestyle.

Need a good workout? Head to the Lares Trek, where the altitude will leave you gasping for breath and the stunning views will leave you breathless.

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