JAN 28, 2016 – I got up at 4:20am in order to be at the entrance of Machu Picchu in time for the first tour. There wasn’t really any reason to get up this early as the weather was cloudy, most of the ruins were covered in fog and it started raining quite heavily during the tour. Nevertheless, I was glad to have a guide explain the history of the city and its buildings to me, and I wasn’t sure I would be able to find a later tour. Afterwards I climbed nearby Montaña Machu Picchu during my assigned time slot, but got no view whatsoever from the top due to the fog. Luckily the rain stopped around 11am and it cleared up, so I was able to visit the stunning mountain city a second time with better visibility. The breathtaking landscape architecture, perfect mortar-free walls on some buildings, and good condition of the site in general made Machu Picchu a real highlight of my trip so far. I was glad to see this one last – after Teotihuacán, Montealbán, Palenque, Yaxchilán, Bonampak, Tikal, and Llactapata. The only weird thing was the absurdly overpriced catering outside the site, and the lack of places offering coffee and shelter. I got lucky and found a guy selling cheap coffee and food, but apparently this was intended for the tour guides really.
Just like in Cusco, I stayed at the Supertramp hostel in Machu Picchu. The hostel was very beautiful, full of nice murals, and offering good breakfast even early in the morning.