To begin with I must note that this entry is being written some time after the experience. The internet in Peru did not serve me well and in fact prohibited me making posts to this blog. As such I am forced to write about my experiences from the comfort of the United States.
Our trip to Machu Pichu was inevitable. One does not visit Peru for what was the first, and possibly last, time in ones life without taking the trouble to visit one of the most extraordinary ruins in all of South America! After solidifying the complex bus reservations, coordinating train tickets, and finally hostel arrangements we prepared ourselves and set forth. Our journey began in another one of the ever present Peruvian van buses. We, along with several tourists from varying nations, set out and soon left behind the smog of Cuzco. As we drove through the highland countryside, jagged snow capped mountains loomed in the distance. They were the vanguard of the Andes, and we would soon find ourselves amidst these sheer granite guardians of South America.
Our first stop was in the small unpronounceable town of Ollantaytambo. An ancient Incan resting area it have massive terraces covering the hillside, along with more decorative ruins dotting the arid, and nearly sheer, hills. We were still at a high altitude and the sky was without much cloud. After spending time walking around the town, exploring the local markets, and witnessing the butchers at said market cut a cow head in half, I bought myself a drink before heading down to the train station. Soon we found ourselves amidst a flock of peruvians and tourists trying to get the train to Aguas Calientes, the town at the foot of Machu Pichu. We boarded and began the ride down through the mountains.
As our train followed the path of a river down through the mountain the scenery slowly changed. With the dropping altitude plants took advantage of the greater oxygen by growing in profuse abundance. Soon we were rolling through beautiful rain forest by a sky blue river. Huge granite mounds stood all around us, covered in their green foliage. The beauty was all I saw as we rode through the forests for a few more hours before reaching our destination. Soon we would be preparing ourselves to see the ruins set amidst this jungle.