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Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Peru Vacation Day 5: Photographs On The Way To Machu Picchu

The process of taking a car, train and bus to get from Cusco to Machu Picchu is described here. Here are some photographs from the trip. I had a tough time selecting which photographs to publish from the train trip, given that I took a whole lot of them, and all of them look very good. But here are a few to whet your appetite! Enjoy!!

Ollantaytambo train stationView of the Ollantaytambo train station. The station had a large waiting room and cafeteria as well as clean restrooms.

backpacker train to Machu PicchuBig crowds getting on and off the backpacker train that arrived while we were waiting for our vistadome train.

Vistadome train to Machu Picchu exteriorOur vistadome train arrives in Ollantaytambo station.

Vistadome train to Machu Picchu interiorA view of the interior of the Vistadome train. Notice the windows at the corners of the walls with the ceiling, cushioned seats and the luggage rack. The entrance to the compartment is in the center of the compartment, right next to the luggage racks.

Vistadome train driver's compartmentThe driver's corner at the front of the compartment.

View through front window of vistadome trainA view of the tracks ahead of us through the front window of our train.

Workers on track doing repairsWorkers working on repairing and shoring up the tracks after the devastating floods earlier in the year. Machu Picchu and Aguas Calientes were cut off from the rest of the world for several weeks when this rail line was washed away in several stretches, and tourists stranded there had to be airlifted out using helicopters.

Turbulent Urubamba riverScenery from train on the way to Machu PicchuIn many stretches, the Urubamba river was quite turbulent as seen in the pictures above. The train stays on the right bank of the river all the way to Aguas Calientes.

Scenery from train on the way to Machu PicchuScenery from train on the way to Machu PicchuScenery from train on the way to Machu PicchuScenery from train on the way to Machu PicchuScenery from train on the way to Machu PicchuSeveral views of mountains and the vista around us as seen from the train to Machu Picchu. Some of the pictures were taken through the windows at the corners of the walls and roof of the train. Most of these pictures were taken out over the river, from the left side of the train. The right side of the train is right next to a high wall most of the time, and does not get much of a view of the scenery.

Footbridge across river UrubambaFootbridges like this across the Urubamba river are very common along the way. We saw some on our drive to Ollantaytambo also, connecting the main road to villages on the opposite bank of the river.

Inca ruins near Machu PicchuSome Inca ruins as the train neared Machu Picchu. Notice another footbridge across the river in the shadows.

Inca ruins on mountainsideThe same ruins in a panaromic view.

Backpacker train at crossingWe waited at a siding at KM 104 for this backpacker train to cross past us. Except for some sidings, the route is single-track all the way, so crossings are quite time-consuming.

Track to Aguas Calientes villageThe tracks to the left lead to and through the village of Aguas Calientes. Our train took the right fork to reach Machu Picchu station in Aguas Calientes.

Machu Picchu train station, Aguas CalientesMachu Picchu train station at Aguas Calientes. Notice that this is the end of the track for the fork that comes to this station, whereas the other fork continues on through the village of Aguas Calientes.

Vistadome train snackThe small snack included for free in the Vistadome train fare. If you want anything to eat or drink on the backpacker trains, you have to make your way to the dining car on the train and pay for food and drinks.

View from bus between Aguas Calientes and Machu PicchuA view from the bus on the way up to Machu Picchu from Aguas Calientes.

Mount PutukusiThis mountain in the foreground is called Putukusi. It rises more than 2000 feet from the Urubamba river valley right next to Machu Picchu. It is a prominent landmark, and is visible from most parts of Machu Picchu. This picture was taken from the bus station at Machu Picchu, at the end of our bus trip from Aguas Calientes.

The next post will be all about Machu Picchu! Took me long enough, right?!

4 comments:

Cusco said...

Great post and pictures! Keep on going!!!

Blogannath said...

Thank you for the encouragement. The scenery was so spectacular, it would have been difficult to take bad pictures though!

Mike Williams said...

Wow beautiful pictures. Peru is really a fantastic place for enjoying vacations. very economic and great location.
__________
Peru Vacation

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