Machu Picchu

Day 4 of our Inca trail hike was the last and final day of the adventure. We got up at 3:30am, ate a quick breakfast (I managed a piece of bread…woohoo!), and got in line to wait for the park to open. When 5:30 hit, we headed off on the trail at breakneck speed, racing toward the sungate.

Once we actually arrived at the sungate, we realized that running was pretty pointless. We were under the impression that the sunrise over our first view of Machu Picchu would be incredibly, but in actuality the sun rose off to the side and due to the surrounding mountains, this meant that there was no sun on Machu Picchu itself.
Oh well, we took a bunch of pictures anyway and then headed further along the trail and closer to Machu Picchu.

The trail felt super populated compared to our last 3 days…all sorts of tourists were headed up toward the sungate from Machu Picchu. It took a lot of self-control not to be big bullies and make fun of them for taking the train to Aguas Calientes and then walking a mere hour or two…especially after the grueling time we had on the trail. We didn’t shove anyone off the trail though and instead focused on arriving at Machu Picchu and enjoying the orchids along the way.

Once the sun had risen a little higher, the light on Machu Picchu was absolutely beautiful!

We took approximately 10,000,000 photos before heading down into the ruins for a tour.

The sun temple

I know I mentioned the amazing stone work at Sacsayhuaman, but it was incredible at Machu Picchu too!

It didn’t matter where you were standing at Machu Picchu, the view was fabulous!

After getting our fill of Incan ruins, we headed down the hill in a zig zaggy bus and spent the afternoon wandering around Aguas Calientes before catching our train back to Cusco.
I have to admit the day was pretty exhausting for sick, dehydrated me, but luckily Alex took lots of photos so that I could go back and remember it all after I felt better.

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