Machu Picchu — day 3

DSC_0004 On day 3, we ventured up the opposite side of the valley, still walking distance from our hostel. Above is our view of day 2’s ruins. The terraces are said to be in the shape of a llama — can you see it?
DSC_0009 This was a very steep trail and Matt decided it wasn’t safe with Thomas on his back, but the other kids and I ventured a bit farther. Those structures behind them are Inca granaries.
DSC_0011It was fun to find our hostel from up above — that’s it in the middle wth the red roof and blue-painted balcony. Even charming from a distance.
IMG_4389After our morning hike, it was time to board the train for Aguas Calientes. We gathered our bags and had a motorbike-taxi help us get them to the station. The train above is the super-snazzy first-class Hiram Bingham, but we chose the more moderately-priced option below.
DSC_0015Still very nice, and they even served a tasty snack. It’s about a ninety-minute train ride from Ollantaytambo to Aguas Calientes, and the scenery is lovely. This train wasn’t very full — it was mid-day — and the kids did well. Once we arrived in Aguas Calientes a hotel employee met our train to help us carry our baggage all the way up a big hill — so that was why the hotel I had chosen was so affordable! We had planned to spend a couple of hours at Machu Picchu that afternoon and already had our tickets, but we needed some cash for the bus and Matt had a terrible time with the ATMs in town for some reason. I was sitting with the kids on a bench near the bus station, getting panicky and impatient, when of course, it started to rain again. Awesome.IMG_4392 IMG_4391Once Matt got some cash figured out, we boarded the bus — a twenty minute ride that was both breathtakingly beautiful and nauseatingly windy. And then we were there! Our first two hours at Machu Picchu were wet wet wet but we still enjoyed a guided tour. We didn’t take many pictures but didn’t worry — we’d be back the next day.IMG_4396 IMG_4395We were happy to find this cozy spot for dinner — El Indio Feliz. Please notice the artwork behind Thomas. A delicious meal after a long day and then back up the big hill to the hotel to figure out what to do with seven wet ponchos.

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