A better alternative is to take a day trip to Pisac, and see the ruins there, which is part of the Boleto. These ruins are much more impressive than the ones nearer to Cusco.
Machu Picchu, The atmospheric ruin perched below the Andes and above the jungle. For the best experience, walk there on the Inca Trail or one of the alternative trails, which is certainly worth the exercise. There are numerous tour companies which organise such trips, costing US$365-450 with all travel costs. As of April 2008, a one-way trip on PeruRail costs US$71 for Vistadome class, and US$58 Backpacker class. This journey takes just under 4 hours, but note that trains now terminate (and begin) at Poroy – you must take a bus or taxi from Cusco to Poroy (the section of track between Poroy and Cusco was too steep and difficult to continue using).
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Troubles reaching Machu Picchu, The railroad service between Ollantaytambo and Km. 82 may be disrupted or at times suspended due to landslides, mudslides and subsidence following sustained periods of very heavy rain. This means that everybody must be transported to Km. 82 to get on a second train. An overland trip is a very good yet adventurous alternative way to get there. When the the rail service is operating between Poroy and Machu Picchu it is a slow but beautiful and comfortable 4 hr trip.
- Lake Titicaca, PeruRail connects Cusco to Juliaca and Puno, and the journey is one of the most spectacular rail journeys in the world, passing both through amazing scenery and the middle of small towns. The journey should take 10 hr, but there are often delays. The ‘scenic stop’ included at La Raya is a bit of a waste of time, though it’s included anyway.
There are several buses that travel to Lake Titicaca, which are compareably priced, and takes less time than the train. They also stop at 5 or 6 interesting spots along the trip, including the “Sistine Chapel of South America” Prices have increased recently, and the cheap backpacker train no longer runs this route, having been sent to the Poroy (Cusco) – Macchu Pichu line.
- Choquequirao, Like Machu Picchu a big Inca ruin area at the edge of a mountain with great view. It offers much bigger area and terraces but less housing. Not as fabulous as Machu Picchu but definitely worth a visit. Only accessible by trekking (possibility to continue to MP) and thus only very few visitors. BTW, it’s cheaper.
- Pisac , Colorful marketplace, climb up to the expansive ruins to the religious site and cemetery behind. 32 km (20 mi) from Cuzco. Accessible with the boleto turistico.
- Ollantaytambo, Religous center that doubled as a fortress during the Spanish conquest . A great place to visit on the return from Machu Picchu. Great place to stay too. 77 km (48 mi) from Cuzco. Accessible with the boleto turistico.
- Moray (Peru) , The agricultural laboratory of the incas. Several cocentric circles up to 150 m deep caused temperature changes of between 2-4°C. Seeds were developed here and spread throughout the empire. 67.5 km (42 mi) from Cusco. Accessible with the boleto turistico.
- Tipon, Farming terraces, water channels and long staircases believed to be a part of the Incan royal estate. Here sits the largest hydraulic system built by the Incas (much of it still functioning) as well as an Incan cemetary. 22.5 km (14 mi) from Cuzco. Accessible with the boleto turistico.
The Lost Inca Civilization • Locations & Activities