Best time to visit Peru and Machu Picchu

Best time to visit Peru and Machu Picchu
Best time to visit Peru and Machu Picchu

Your tour to Machu Picchu is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, that is why you want it to be well organised.

One of the New Seven Wonders of the world– and a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1983–the Lost City can be reached by foot or by train. So, let’s see how a visit to Machu Picchu can be a rewarding and exciting experience.

By Foot

The famous Inca Trail, a rigorous 4-day hike, as well as an unforgettable experience– is one way of getting to Machu Picchu. Please bear in mind, though, that the booking for this particular tour must be made months in advance. In fact, the Peruvian government allows only 500 travellers per day on the trail itself. To enjoy your experience, you need to plan your trekking experience well (and well in advance) and understand the weather in the Andes, too.

Altitude on the Inca Trail hike ranges from 2,000 to 4,000 meters (6,500to 13,000 feet); it starts in the Andes and finishes in the cloud forest. This means that you will encounter many different types of weather. The first thing to know is that in the Andes we basically have two seasons: the dry season and the rainy season. The best months to hike the Inca Trail are those in the dry season, running from April to October, which is generally considered the best period to hike in the Andes. Please be aware, though, that during this period, although temperatures during the day may reach 20° C (68°F), nights are rather cold and can get down to freezing (0° C, or 32° F).

Hiking the Inca Trail during the rainy season can be quite different. You should avoid going to Machu Picchu via the Inca Trail between January and February (when, typically, the Inca Trail is closed because of rain –and for maintenance). November, December, and March, though, are acceptable months for hiking the Inca Trail, though the trail may be slippery.

By Train

If you decide to travel to Machu Picchu by train, planning is completely different. Since trains depart from Ollantaytambo, Urubamba and Poroy (and travel up to the Machu Picchu village of AguasCalientes), the trip to Machu Picchu is possible all year round.

Bear in mind, though, that even travel by train must be organised in advance because of the limited number of people who are allowed to enter Machu Picchu each day (2,500).