MACHU PICCHU MOUNTAIN
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE?
These two mountains can enhance your Machu Picchu experience. With a detailed history and summary of each, this section will help you decide which one is best for you and how to purchase the add o
HUAYNA PICCHU HISTORY
Huayna Picchu is considered a spiritually symbolic space for the Incan community. This is due to the fact that it was home to the temple of the moon which is located in a natural cave just below the top of Huayna Picchu mountain at 2,720 meters above sea level. its construction is still a mystery and it purpose only under speculation.
However, historians and scholars believe that because it is built of white granite, prized by the Incas and it’s located within a cave, which served as a portal to connect with the dead, this temple was of great spiritual importance as a place of worship and potential sacrifice. Huayna Picchu is one of the only places you can see the shape of the ruins below. The inca shaped their settlements so from a height they drew out the outline of a valued or sacred animal. The city’s ruins of Machu Picchu form a condor and there is no better place to see this than at the heights of Huayna Picchu.
HUAYNA PICCHU HIKE
The walk up to Huanya Picchu is only permitted with a separately purchased ticket. It is located on the far side from the entrance to Machu Picchu. With strict time you will need to make sure you are there on time otherwise you may be rejected entrance. The hike is moderate to difficult and will take you approx 2 hours round trip, although you are permitted time at the top.
There are 3 time slots within the day you could be allotted, note that the last time slot of the day does not allow access to the temple of the moon. So if this is something you wish to visit then book your time slot accordingly and ahead of time. It recommended and sometimes necessary to book 2-3 months ahead of time. Apprehending tickets for this extra experience is something Southern Peru can help you with so please ask.
MACHU PICCHU MOUNTAIN HISTORY
The basis of this mountain along with others surrounding the ruins is a formation called Vilcabamba Batholith which is 246-million-year-old granite created by volcanic eruptions. Machu Picchu mountain is the parallel to Huayna Picchu, with the ruins of the city lying directly in between both this mountain it is situated toward the South west of the citadel. It is the taller of the two and standing at 3,050 meters above sea level, it towers over its surroundings.
MACHU PICCHU MOUNTAIN HIKE
Machu Picchu Mountain is the longer of the two extra treks you can undertake during your time in the city. Although it will take approximately 3 hours to complete with a tag of moderate to difficult it is still considered a more relaxed and easier trek than Huanya Picchu. Its height means the path will insist you traverse the mountain so this hike is not recommended for someone with a severe fear of heights.Though please bring warm clothes due to this alswell.
It also, along with its sibling mountain, needs a pre purchased combination ticket, allowing both entrance to the city and the access to the hike. It is located along the path to sungate and spurs off to the right where you will find wardens huts to check your tickets and documentation (from entrance to the warden’s hut this will take approx 30min). There are newly appointed signage for destinations and wardens to help with directions if you are a little lost).
Although it is a less popular option than Huayna picchu, potentially due to the hike duration or its new status as a trek option, it does mean booking is a little easier. If you are wanting to escape the crowds and have a more authentic personal experience at this wonder of the world, Machu Picchu mountain is the best option. It will indulge you with panoramic vistas which you will get nowhere else on this ancient site.
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