Huayna Picchu trek
Huayna Picchu, meaning Young Peak in Quechua; the Inca language, is the largest mountain at Machu Picchu, centred at the forefront of the historical site in the google images of Machu Picchu. For many people, going to Machu Picchu is a dream, an item to cross off the bucket list, but while you’re there, it would be well worth your time to consider a Huayna Picchu trek.
Machu Picchu is located around four hours by train from the Inca City of Cusco. Machu Picchu is one of the most visited sites in Peru, if not in South America, with thousands visiting the sites every year. This makes the number of people in the high season a bit excessive and as such, there are lengthy queues at the entry of the site, taking approximately an hour to get through. However, the high season has beautiful clear skies and the weather can be warm, making it the ideal time for avid photographers wishing to take a few snaps of the site to come and visit.
If you are considering the trek to Huayna Picchu, there are many things to consider before you book your Machu Picchu tour and your Huayna Picchu tour.
There are two seasons in the Cusco and Machu Picchu regions. Firstly, the dry season which is from May to October, which is also accompanied by high numbers of tourists, making ticket availability limited. The government of Peru only sells four hundred tickets a day so you will need to book in advance if you wish to visit the site. Secondly, the wet season, which is from November to March, contrastingly is accompanied by low tourists numbers and minimal wait times. There are more tickets available to enter the cite but due to the time of year, the is a much greater possibility of rain.
You will also need to consider how you are going to get to Machu Picchu; there is the famous Inca trails as well as a number of train services from Cusco to Machu Picchu.
The short Huayna Picchu trail is accessible to most people, young and old, but you will need to have a reasonable fitness level to journey along the trail. The climb to the summit from the base of the mountain is more strenuous than you may be expecting and from the summit to the Moon temple, there is a wooden ladder that you will need to climb, so be prepared as it is not a particularly easy route.
There are two entrance times to Huayna Picchu every day, the first is at 7:00 am and the second entrance time is at 10:00 am. Both times have their advantage; the earlier time is cooler, especially in the dry season when the days can get hot, but you may have fog on your trek making visibility difficult for overlooking the site as well as any photo opportunities you may wish to take. If you choose the later time, you will encounter a lot more people and the climb will be slower.
The climb is suitable for older children, but for younger children it may be difficult. Some of the stairs can be very steep and in the rainy season, they can be slippery. It takes the average hiker two to two and a half hours to reach the summit and normally around one hour to go back down.