I vaguely recall pathetically crying during year 7 camp when I attempted crossing an obstacle course about 10 meters off the ground, my only safety assurance was a metal cable tied to my saddle. Back then my legs refused to move even a single step forward, thus I never particularly enjoyed heights. However, I have to say that on this entire trip, ziplining from mountain to mountain in random positions( upside down, hanging like spiderman, flying like superman), and walking across a suspension bridge somewhere between 50 to 100 meters above ground, was my best experience, not to mention, it costed about a fraction of what it would have costed had I done something similar in Australia. Ziplining upside down, exotic trees and rapid rivers below me gave me a sensation almost like I was in a movie scene where the world was turned upside down.
After ziplining, we were transported to the start of our final trail alongside a railway track. Although still a bit wary of trekking and my legs were still sore, I slowly trekked behind my friends, thankfully this part of the trek was very flat so very easy. It isn’t everyday where you can walk alongside a railway in Sydney anyway so it was fun.
I feel a bit rude to call my friends insane but after their 7 day trek, I barely managed to keep up with them along the way and we ended up finishing the trek an hour earlier than anticipated, passing many travellers along the way to the very front. We go to Aguas Caliente in the afternoon. This town is so much more iconic than any I have been to since Cusco with a railway running right in between the town, splitting it into two sides. For dinner, we had a complimentary meal included in the tour, albeit a rather small meal, so I ended up having pizza at another place before calling it a day. Although this town seemed so much more prosperous and advanced than the other cities, wifi was still horrible.
Finally At Machu Picchu!
Following our tour guides advice, we woke up around 5am early next morning to skip the crowd as we took a bus to Machu Picchu ( although the lines were already crazy long when we got there). It a was twenty minute bus ride getting there and thus I was presented with the famed lost city of Machu Picchu. Honestly, I believe I would have been more overwhelmed by the glory of this fabulous ancient city if it weren’t for the fact that I have already visited several other ruins beforehand. Nonetheless, as the sun rose and illuminated the ruins, it was still a very mesmerising view worthwhile of its World Heritage fame.
Beside the labyrinth of stone built houses and the usual altars, some of the more interesting monuments include large stones carved to follow the silhouettes of the surrounding mountains. What mesmerised me most was a piece of stone which pointed true north, I believe this must have been quite a feat back in the days.
It was only 9 before we have walked everywhere in the ruins, my friends having learnt there there was a higher peak where they could get a stamp for their passports decided to head there, however, I was not in the mood of doing any more uphill hiking, thus I headed back Aguas Caliente for breakfast. It wasn’t long before my friends came back and with not much else to do, we visited the local market place and waited late into the night after a 3 hour delay before our train left for Ollantaytambo. It was about 1 am before we got back to Cusco.