Taking the Machu Picchu Express

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train to Machu Picchu

Peru Rail takes us from Ollantaytambo to Machu Picchu
Photo credit: M. Ciavardini

Short on vacation time, the Brawny Sherpa and I opt for a quick trip to Peru. Sure, we’d love to languish in the countryside for a couple of weeks, learn all there is to learn in Lima, gain clarity with the ayahuasca, canoe the Amazon. Right now, there isn’t time. Our goal is Machu Picchu; we have exactly one day.

Inkallpa Valle Sagrado Hotel

The Inkallpa Valle Sagrado Hotel in Urubamba, Peru
Photo credit: M. Ciavardini

To pull this one off, we’ll need to get up early. After spending the night at the Inkallpa Valle Sagrado Hotel in Urubamba, we are up before dawn to catch Peru Rail from Ollantaytambo to Machu Picchu. Sipping some coca tea while watching the wild water of the Urubamba just outside our window, I feel like a pioneer heading west on the transcontinental railroad.

Urubamba river

The train tracks are almost at the water’s edge on the way to Machu Picchu.
Photo credit: M. Ciavardini

This will be just the beginning of our journey back in time.

—Lori Tripoli

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View from Peru Rail

One of several micro-climates on the way to Machu Picchu
Photo credit: M. Ciavardini

 

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