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Not all hikers have enough time to make the classic 4 days Inca trail but they do not want to miss the experience and take the train instead, fortunately there is a good alternative for them: One-day Inca trail and 2 days Inca trail to Machu Picchu.
Here, we will show you 5 reasons for you to consider a day hike to Machu Picchu:
Some travelers may have a limited number of days in Peru, but they want to experience all the main attractives including the Inca trail. With a one-day trek, you will have time to explore Cusco, Ollantaytambo, Aguas Calientes and still arrive at Machu Picchu on the same route as the Incas in less time than usual, so you can take your time to explore other places as well.
If you have never been mountain trekking before, 4 days of hiking and camping at higher altitude might sound a bit scary. Taking the one-day Inca trail hike provides you an opportunity to accomplish one of the world’s most famous treks and still feel the joy of reaching Machu Picchu through the same Inca path.
The hike is easy to moderately difficult depending on your physical condition.
Nevertheless, please note that if you feel that a one-day hike will be too exhausting, then you can choose our 2 days short Inca trail to Machu Picchu as well (here you will be visiting Machu Picchu twice and sleep at a nice hotel next morning you can see the sunrise at Machu Picchu city)
Machu Picchu is stunning, however there is much more to the Sacred Valley that is not visible from any train or tour bus. For instance, you can visit the former religious site of Chachabamba (which is generally not visited on the classic 4 days trek) before walking for the morning along the Andean mountainside overlooking the Urubamba river valley. After a brief stop for lunch beside a marvelous waterfall and exploring the agricultural terraces of Wiñaywayna, you can descend into the cloud forest to Inti Punku (the Sun Gate) by late afternoon. If you opt to take the train, you will not able to see any of this.
You will arrive in the afternoon, when the crowds have gone from the morning schedule. You will have time to take some photos and as you descend into Machu Picchu to catch your bus to Aguas Calientes and opt for a two-hour tour or explore the ruins on your own the following morning.
The weather is unpredictable in the Andes, where rain and clouds can settle in a matter of minutes and completely change the view. If you have dreamed of capturing that perfect postcard of Machu Picchu, adding the trek to your itinerary does not guarantee that the weather will be good, but it does mean that you will have 2 opportunities to see the famous archaeological site. You can accomplish your hike just as the afternoon showers cleared and the sun burned off the clouds to reveal an empty Machu Picchu, without crowds as you are approaching closing time and then have the opportunity to visit Machu Picchu the next day.