The majestic Machu Picchu Mountain, towering over 652m/2,139ft above the Inca city, stands proudly at an elevation of 3,082 meters. Offering awe inspiring views, this natural wonder provides a perspective of Machu Picchu that is unparalleled anywhere else in the world. You can begin your adventure from the trailhead situated at the base of the Inca City of Machu Picchu.
Each day, countless individuals are drawn to the sacred energy that permeates the grounds of Machu Picchu, a site deeply revered by the Inca civilization. At the summit of Machu Picchu Mountain, Inca priests once conducted rituals on significant dates, adding to their spiritual significance.
Please note that climbing Machu Picchu Mountain is an optional extra trek within the Machu Picchu complex and does not include a guide. The ascent is typically undertaken independently. However, due to the new entrance hours from 7 am to 8 am conflicting with Machu Picchu Tours, it is no longer possible to climb the mountain on the same day as your Machu Picchu tour. Instead, it should be planned for a separate day. An additional fee of $75 applies for the second day, and if you require a guide, please make a prior request to SAM CORPORATIONS, who can arrange it for you. Please be aware that this extra service incurs an additional charge.
The duration of the climb up Machu Picchu Mountain varies depending on your hiking speed and the frequency of photo stops. On average, it takes about 1 to 1.5 hours to ascend, resulting in a round trip of approximately 2 to 3 hours. Once you reach the summit, you will view the breathtaking beauty of Machu Picchu and the final stretch of the Classic Inca Trail.
From the top, you’ll also be able to appreciate the magnificent canyon formed by the Vilcanota River’s slope, encompassing lush green mountains on one side and the majestic peaks of the Cordillera Vilcabamba, including the snow-capped summit of Salkantay (6,271 m), on the other.
The ascent to Machu Picchu Mountain is considered moderately challenging, but not overly difficult. However, during the rainy season, the trail can become slippery, adding a bit more challenge to the climb.
The first option, known as the first shift, is perfect for those who have stayed in Aguas Calientes the night before. To catch the sunrise, you’ll need to board the early morning buses to Machu Picchu and start your ascent to the peak of Montaña. From there, you’ll witness the gradual crowd gathering at Machu Picchu. Please note that choosing this option will cost you a total of USD 75, which covers both Machu Picchu Mountain and the Machu Picchu Citadel. However, there is a trade-off: after the 3-hour round-trip hike, you may feel too fatigued to fully enjoy the 2- to 3-hour guided tour of Machu Picchu.
If you decide to go with this option, it’s important to enter the Machu Picchu citadel between 6:00 a.m. and 7:00 a.m. The hike from the main gate to the mountain’s control point takes approximately 25 minutes. Once you complete the hike, you can reenter Machu Picchu through the lower part, also known as Circuit 3.
Second Shift to Montaña (8:00 am to 9:00 am)
The second shift, from 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m., allows 200 people to enter; this is ideal for people arriving at Machu Picchu after hiking the Short Inca Trail, Salkantay Trek, Lares Trek, Inca Jungle, or Tours by train. It would be best to first explore the Citadel of Machu Picchu before ascending the mountain. It will take around 1.5 hours to reach the mountain’s summit and a similar time to return.
Unless you take a private trip, we don’t suggest this mountain if you’re trekking the Classic 4-day Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. Then, you hike this mountain first and then visit Machu Picchu. If you stay an additional day in Aguas Calientes after the Inca Trail, you may hike this mountain and return to Cusco the following day. Machu Picchu Mountain tickets allow you to reenter Machu Picchu but only through the shortest circuit called “CIRCUIT 3 OR LOWER ENTRANCE.”
***This is the time you start the hike. It takes approximately 1-1.5 hours to reach the top, take some photos, and another 1-1.5 hours to return.
The price for Machu Picchu Mountain is an additional $ 75 USD.
Which is the best time of the day to hike?
Whether you are on a group tour or have a private tour guide, these options are recommended.
Private Tours to Machu Picchu.
You have the option to hike up to Machu Picchu Montaña before meeting your tour guide at a designated point to explore the citadel. Alternatively, you can request your tour guide to accompany you up the mountain, but please note that this will incur an additional charge as the guided tour typically covers only the citadel. If you choose this plan, you will only need one ticket, and the total cost will be $75.
Group Tours to Machu Picchu
For those participating in a group tour, the one-ticket option is not applicable. Group guided tours are usually scheduled in the morning when Machu Picchu is less crowded. After exploring the citadel, you can independently climb Machu Picchu Mountain. In this case, you will require two tickets: one for early entry to Machu Picchu ($55) and another for Machu Picchu + Montaña ($75). A separate tour guide for Machu Picchu Mountain is not necessary.
Which time of the year is best to hike Machu Picchu Montaña?
Now, let’s consider the best time of year to hike Machu Picchu Montaña. Machu Picchu is situated in the tropical cloud forest of the warm and humid upper Amazon region. It is a hidden city atop a high mountain with challenging access and cannot be seen from the lower areas. Throughout most of the year, the area is covered by mist and clouds, adding to its mystique. Travelers visit Machu Picchu year-round, regardless of whether it’s sunny, cloudy, or rainy, the city never fails to astonish.
Here are some recommendations to keep in mind when planning your visit. The dry season, from May to October, generally experiences less rainfall. However, it’s always wise to carry rain gear as weather conditions can change rapidly. This season tends to be busy, especially from June to September, resulting in long queues for buses, Machu Picchu, and trains. On the other hand, the wet season, from November to April, sees rain in the early morning with the sun usually appearing around 9 to 10 a.m. Nevertheless, in the cloud forest, weather patterns are unpredictable. It’s advisable to come prepared for sun, rain, and cold weather.
**The best time to visit Machu Picchu and hike Machu Picchu mountain are the shoulder seasons: April, May, September, October, and November.
At an elevation of 3082 meters (10111 ft.), Montaña Machu Picchu stands as the highest mountain in the region. The hike to its summit commences at the Machu Picchu citadel, situated at 2430 meters (7972 feet). To reach the pinnacle of Machu Picchu Mountain, you should allocate at least 1.5 hours for the ascent and a comparable amount of time to descend along the same path.
Machu Picchu Mountain is positioned in the southwest direction of the citadel, with its entrance situated in the upper part of Machu Picchu near the Guardhouse. Once you pass the checkpoint, you’ll begin your ascent. Afterward, veer left toward the Guardhouse three times until you reach the main trail leading to the Sun Gate (Intipunku). Follow this trail for approximately 5 minutes until you spot a sign indicating Machu Picchu Mountain, then make a right turn. A flight of long stairs awaits you, leading upward until you reach the checkpoint. The total time from the main entrance of Machu Picchu to the gate of Montaña is approximately 25 minutes.
Beware while traversing the trail as certain sections of the mountain are steep and equipped with stairs, which can pose potential hazards. It is crucial to remain vigilant at all times. Also, adhere to the signs and instructions provided by your tour guide for a safe and enjoyable experience.
Ascending Montaña Machu Picchu can indeed present challenges along the way. The intense sun may leave you questioning your decision to undertake this climb. However, all doubts will dissipate once you reach the summit and are rewarded with a breathtaking panorama of Machu Picchu, the Inca Trail, and the majestic mountains that surround it. The awe-inspiring view will serve as a reminder of why you embarked on this journey in the first place.
To ensure a comfortable and enjoyable hike up Machu Picchu Mountain, it’s essential to pack some key items. Firstly, bring an ample supply of water to stay hydrated throughout the journey. Additionally, pack some energizing snacks to keep you fueled along the way. Comfortable walking shoes are a must, providing adequate support for the hike. Dress in lightweight and breathable clothing suitable for warm weather. Don’t forget to bring sunscreen to protect your skin from the sun’s rays. Insect repellent will help keep pesky bugs at bay. As weather conditions can change quickly, it’s wise to have rain gear on hand as well. Finally, don’t forget to bring a camera to capture the awe-inspiring and picturesque views that await you on your ascent.
The average temperature in Machu Picchu is around 68 degrees Fahrenheit (20ºC). It’s important to note that the temperature can vary between 50 and 86 degrees Fahrenheit. With this fluctuation in mind, it’s crucial to pack clothing suitable for various weather conditions.
In conclusion, Machu Picchu Mountain stands as one of the most sought-after hiking destinations worldwide. The awe-inspiring views from its summit. The sense of accomplishment that accompanies completing the hike makes it an unforgettable experience. If you’re considering taking on the challenge of Machu Picchu Mountain, be sure to follow our comprehensive guide to ensure a safe and enjoyable journey.
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