Saturday 26 April 2014

Machu and Wayna Picchu

Wayna Picchu - shrouded in mist!
Machu Picchu is Quechua - the language of the Incas and still spoken in Peru today - for old mountain. It is overlooked by Wayna (sometimes spelt Huayna) Picchu, which is Quechua for young mountain.

When booking the Inca Trail, we were given the option of spending a little bit more to climb Wayna Picchu once we were at Machu Picchu on our last day of the trail and a quick search on the internet suggested it was worth it for getting a different perspective on the site.

After a fascinating walk around Machu Picchu, our guide took us to the checkpoint to start the climb up Huayna Picchu. Only allow 400 people a day are allowed in to do the climb. Two hundred people are allowed in at 7 am and 200 at 10 am.

As we started to climb up it quickly became apparent why this was. The path is very narrow in places, making it quite difficult to pass people coming down. And there is very little space at the top. 

It is also quite a steep climb and is particularly hard if you have been walking for 3 and a half days and have been up since 3 am. 

And if you're afraid of heights this might not be for you. When we were at the top, a very unhappy tourist joined us, who was in quite a state because of the climb up. Unfortunately for her the climb down is even trickier, but we did see her again at the bottom (looking much happier), so she survived!

Still smiling, but we haven't seen the steepest bit we need to climb down yet!

However, when the cloud cleared, the views were definitely worth it as it gave a whole different perspective to Machu Picchu - not the usual sight you see on the postcards! And the climb was actually quite fun!

Machu Picchu was built in the shape of a Condor - can you make it out?

It also provided the perfect backdrop for Victor's birthday champagne and chocolate.

Amanda and Victor
But there was still definitely no jumping up here either!

For more on our experiences of the Inca Trail, see El Camino de Inca.

1 comment:

  1. Salkantay trek is the alternative to the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu was recently named among the 25 best Treks in the World, by National Geographic Adventure Travel Magazine.