What to pack before going to Machu Picchu?

Imagine you are about to embark on an epic adventure to one of the world’s most iconic destinations: Machu Picchu. Before you immerse yourself in the majesty of the ancient Inca ruins, it is crucial that you are prepared with everything you need. But what to pack before going to Machu Picchu? Read on to discover all the essentials that will make your trip an unforgettable and worry-free experience.

Clothing suitable for different climates

Layers for all weathers

The weather in Machu Picchu can be very variable, so it is important to pack layered clothing. This will allow you to easily adapt to temperature changes throughout the day.

  • Short and long-sleeved shirts: Take several short-sleeved shirts for hot days and long-sleeved shirts for cool mornings and evenings.
  • Waterproof jacket: The weather can be unpredictable, so a waterproof jacket is essential to protect you from the rain.
  • Thermal clothing: If you plan to visit during the rainy season (November to March), thermal clothing will keep you warm.

Comfortable and versatile trousers

  • Convertible trousers: These are ideal for quickly changing from long trousers to shorts if the weather changes.
  • Leggings or sweatpants: These are comfortable and will allow you to move freely during walks.

Essential accessories

  • Hat or cap: To protect you from the sun during your hikes.
  • Sunglasses: Essential to protect your eyes from UV rays.
  • Scarf or bandana: Useful to protect you from the wind and cold in the mornings and evenings.
  • Gloves: Depending on the time of year you’ll be climbing, you may want to have a pair of gloves, and even better if they’re waterproof.
  • Swimming costumes: You may be surprised by this item, but Aguas Calientes has hot springs and you can enjoy a dip in the naturally warm waters.

Appropriate footwear

  • Hiking boots: Hiking boots are an absolute necessity for exploring Machu Picchu and its surroundings. Make sure they are comfortable and well-fitting to avoid blisters and discomfort.
  • Sandals or light shoes: For the times when you are not walking on steep trails, comfortable sandals or light shoes will be a practical and cool option.

Essential equipment

  • Daypack: A daypack is crucial for carrying your essential belongings while hiking. Opt for one that is lightweight and has compartments for organising your gear.
  • Reusable water bottle: Staying hydrated is vital, especially during hikes. Carry a reusable water bottle that you can refill along the way.
  • Trekking poles: If you plan to do long hikes, trekking poles can provide extra support and reduce fatigue in your legs.

Hygiene and health articles

  • Sunscreen: Apply liberally to protect your skin from the sun’s strong rays.
  • Insect repellent: Machu Picchu and the surrounding area can have mosquitoes, especially in the rainy season.
  • Lip balm: A lip balm with SPF to help moisturise and protect the lips.
  • First aid kit: A small first aid kit with bandages, disinfectant, painkillers and any personal medication is essential to be prepared for the unexpected.
  • Wet wipes: Useful for freshening up and cleaning yourself during the day.
  • Hand sanitiser: To keep hands clean when there is no access to soap and water.

Technology and photographic equipment

  • Camera or smartphone with a good camera: Capturing the special moments of your visit to Machu Picchu is essential. Bring a camera or smartphone with a good quality camera to immortalise your experience.
  • Portable battery and chargers: Be sure to bring a portable battery and the necessary chargers for your electronic devices, as signal and charging points may be limited in certain areas.
  • Plug adapters: Peru uses type A and C plugs. If you come from a country with a different type of plug, you will need an adapter to charge your devices.

Documents and money

Important documents

  • Passport: Necessary to enter Machu Picchu.
  • Tickets to Machu Picchu: Make sure you have your tickets printed, as they can be requested at various checkpoints.
  • Additional ID: Bring a copy of your ID in case you lose your passport.

Cash and cards

Although there are ATMs in Aguas Calientes, it is advisable to carry enough cash for your daily expenses, as not all places accept cards.

Snacks and food

  • Energy snacks: Bring energy snacks such as granola bars, dried fruits and nuts to keep your energy up during the hikes.
  • Light food: If you plan to spend all day exploring, bringing some sandwiches or light meals can be very useful to avoid interruptions to your adventure.

Other useful items

  • Map of Machu Picchu: A map will help you find your way around and make sure you don’t miss any of the important points of Machu Picchu.
  • Notebook and pen: To write down important details, schedules or even your thoughts and experiences during the trip.
  • Plastic bags: Useful for storing dirty clothes or protecting your belongings from the rain.

Baggage for the Inca Trail

If you intend to walk, you will need the following items, in addition to what we have already mentioned. We recommend a sleeping mat, sleeping bag, quality hiking equipment that includes hiking boots, walking stick, flashlight or headlamp, comfortable clothing that includes hiking pants, insect repellent, earplugs, personal toiletries that include wet wipes, medications, toothbrush and toothpaste, as well as snacks for travel such as energy bars. Trekking from December to January is not recommended due to weather conditions. The Inca Trail closes every year during February for maintenance.

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