Machu Picchu is an Inca citadel located in the high jungles of Cusco, in Peru. It was built during the height of the Inca Empire, in the XV century. After its scientific rediscovery in 1911, Machu Picchu was mistaken as the lost capital of the Inca Empire. However, Machu Picchu was actually a religious sanctuary whose entrance was reserved to the royal Inca family.
Most historians agree that Machu Picchu was never invaded by the Spanish. The citadel was probably inhabited by a small population of priests and priestesses until 1572, when the so-called “Inca Empire of Vilcabamba” fell after the execution of Tupac Amaru. After being abandoned, the citadel was quickly covered by the surrounding jungles.
Over the centuries, there were some sporadic references to a “lost Inca city” in the region of Vilcabamba, in Cusco. For example, in the late XVI century, a Spanish soldier named Baltasar de Ocampo claimed that he encountered a large Inca city hidden in the high jungles of Cusco.
Machu Picchu was officially rediscovered in 1911, when an American expedition led by Hiram Bingham found the Inca ruins. This expedition elaborated detailed descriptions and blueprints of some sections of the citadel. Their findings were made public to the world by the National Geographic magazine.
Cusco Machu Picchu is an unskippable destination while visiting Peru. This ancient citadel is one of the best preserved Inca sites in Peru. During this tour, you will explore the main buildings of Machu Picchu, including the famous Temple of the Condor and the Intihuatana.
We are a local travel agency committed to providing the best tours and treks in Peru. Our staff have years of experience planning vacations in Peru. During our tours, you will get unique insights about the history and traditions of all the places you will be visiting.
Our 3 Day Machu Picchu Tour from Lima is perfect for exploring Machu Picchu in a short time. We also offer day tours to the Humantay Lake, the Vinicunca Rainbow Mountain, the Sacred Valley and Machu Picchu. You can also check our special tours to the Salkantay Trek and the Inca Trail. Explore the most incredible Inca archaeological sites of Peru with us.
Lima Hotel Transfer.
We will pick you up from your hotel in Lima at 4:00 am. Then, we will drive to the airport to take a flight to Cusco city. Once in Cusco, we will transfer you to your hotel room. Later, in the afternoon, we will pick you up from your hotel. Then, you will have a guided Cusco city tour.
We will first visit the Cusco Cathedral. This church houses numerous paintings of the traditional Cusco Art School.These paintings depict curious scenes that mix the Spanish and Inca cultures. One of them is “The Last Supper”, which shows Jesus Christ and his apostles eating a guinea pig.
Afterwards, we will visit the Convent of Santo Domingo. This colonial church was built on top of the Inca temple of Qorikancha. The Qorikancha was the main temple of the Inca Empire. It used to house hundreds of religious idols from the populations conquered by the Incas. Nowadays, some sections of the Qorikancha are still visible. Some of them are the Sun Temple, the Moon Temple, the Intipampa, the Solar Garden, among other Inca ruins.
Next, we will visit the Inca ruins of Sacsayhuaman, located outside the city of Cusco. Sacsayhuaman has huge stone walls arranged in a zig zag layout. For this reason, Sacsayhuaman is often mistaken as a fortress. However, the archeological evidence suggests that Sacsayhuaman was actually a giant temple dedicated to the sun and thunder gods.
After visiting Sacsayhuaman, we will explore the nearby Inca site of Qenqo. Some sections of Qenqo are decorated with complex stone carvings that resemble snakes, monkeys and llamas. Some historians propose that Qenqo was used as a sanctuary where ritual sacrifices were performed. However, the real purpose of Qenqo is still unknown to this day.
Then, our next stop will be the Inca ruins of Tambomachay. This site has some Inca water fountains that still work to this day. Tambomachay was an Inca temple dedicated to the water. It also served as a retreat center for the Inca royalty.
Finally, we will visit the small fortress of Puca Pucara. This place served as an Inca military outpost. After visiting Puca Pucara, we will return to Cusco city, where we will transfer you to your hotel room.
We will wake up early in the morning. After having breakfast, we will drive to the Ollantaytambo train station, located in the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Once there, we will board a train to Aguas Calientes town, the entry point to Machu Picchu.
The train trip takes around 1.5 hours to complete. Once we arrive in Aguas Calientes, we will board a bus to Machu Picchu. After passing the security checkpoints, we will enter the Inca citadel.
Then, you will have a guided tour of the most famous places of Machu Picchu. You will visit the Main Temple, the Temple of the Three Windows, the Temple of the Condor, and the Intihuatana. If you have booked a ticket to Huayna Picchu mountain or Machu Picchu mountain, our staff will take you to the respective entrance.
After the guided tour, we will return to Aguas Calientes, where you will have free time to have lunch. The lunch is not included in the tour price. In the afternoon, we will board a train to return to Ollantaytambo. Once there, we will transfer you back to your hotel in Cusco city.
We will pick you up from your hotel in Cusco to take you to the airport, where you will board a plane to Lima city. Once we arrive in Lima, we will transfer you to your hotel. If you want to learn more about the Inca history of Cusco, contact us for more information about our specialized Sacred Valley Tours.
The trip was very comfortable, all the staff treated us very kindly and the guide was very well informed of the places we visited, I was amazed with the history of Machu Picchu.