Around the World for the 1st time [Day 15] Ollantaytambo Station ⇒ Machu Picchu Station (Aguas Calientes)
Ollantaytambo Station ⇒ Machu Picchu Station (Aguas Calientes)
This is the view from the rooftop in the morning. It is cold because of the high altitude. Breathing in the humid cold air, my body woke up at once from sleep. I left my large luggage at the inn and checked out, as I would be back in a few days. Walked from the inn to the train station. I prepared my train ticket and checked in. I boarded the train safely and felt relieved. The train was comfortable with wide windows to enjoy the spectacular view. The train, running along the Urubamba River, arrived at Machu Picchu Village (Aguas Calientes) at the foot of Machu Picchu in about one and a half hours.
Once you get off at Machu Picchu station, you will immediately be surrounded by souvenir stores. Walking to the hotel, we check in. After a short rest, we boarded a bus for Machu Picchu. The number of people who can enter Machu Picchu per day is limited, so you have to make a reservation to get in.
The bus ride takes about 40 minutes up a steep mountain that looks like it could be inhabited by Chinese hermits, through the clouds. Some of the paths are quite scary, with no guardrails and cliffs. Some people walk up the trail, but I think it is quite tough. Then we arrived at the gate of Machu Picchu. There is a luxurious hotel next to the gate, and we, who were tired of Machu Picchu, spent a lazy day at the hotel’s restaurant. And there is a dog sleeping on the stairs going up to the gate.
We thought we would see “that so-called scenery” right away after showing the voucher and entering the gate, but we were wrong. You have to walk for about 5 minutes along the mountain path, and then the view suddenly opens up.
The route is set and you follow the arrows on the signs. You are not allowed to go further than the fenced area. Once you enter, there are guards all over the place and they will say, “Oigar! Amigo!” and you will be warned. I was impressed by how they piled up so many rocks. Everywhere I took pictures, I got a good one. There were alpacas on the grounds.
Folding chairs for sitting at rest were very useful. But these chairs seem to be rare in other countries, so when I sat on one, “Oh, that’s a nice chair! I like that chair! Where can I buy one?” I was often asked. The next day, I took a picture with someone who approached me.
Machu Picchu looks beautiful at first glance, but behind the stone walls there were a lot of plastic bottles and garbage that had been thrown away. It might be to hide them out of sight and clean them up later, but it was terrible. When you go abroad, you have to behave as a representative of your home country. Throwing away trash is disgusting!
Sanctuary Lodge, A Belmond Hotel
After enjoying Machu Picchu in its entirety, we left the gate and entered the hotel restaurant. We paid about US$60 per person, I think, and went inside to find a buffet-style restaurant, which was very busy as most of the Machu Picchu tourists were going in there. The food tasted good, as it was expensive. I could hear some Japanese here.