Planning Machu Picchu

How amazing is this city of stone high in the sky? The Inca people worked tirelesly and crafted incredibly tight seams with out any modern day tools.

I was dreaming of Machu Picchu (will be referred to as MP) for years. I decided to hike the Inca Trail. Julie, a friend of mine had hiked an alternative route to MP and was a great resource for my inital inquest. I picked a tour company and put a deposit down. After another few paycheques I had the trip, flight and many side trips paid for. I filtered through all the Peru reading travel books and watched travel DVDs to verse myself on the history of this great place.

Picking a Tour Company

I researched many reviews and prices and came up with Peru Treks. They had great reviews and were the cheapest by $100+. I made contact and started the reservation process. A few emails went back and forth and then there was nothing.

I e-mailed them again only to find out they decided to not accept my booking because I eat a Vegan diet. Ouch. Burn. We can thank places like Peru for food like Potatoes and Corn (which are my fav!) Me gusta como papas!!!!

SAS Travel accepted my reservation but I never got a personal e-mail like the other company they just kept resending the confirmation and updating the information.

Travel Vaccinations

Knowing some countries have vaccination mandates for entry I always research where I’m going. There was nothing mandatory for Peru or Panama. I received the reccomended Hepatitis A shot, Thypoid shot, Diamox and Dukoral. Luckily because I was visiting MP which has a higher altitude I was not required to have the Yellow Fever shot. The vaccine is on a world wide shortage and some people can have adverse effects. A very disappointing amount was covered by my group benefits but I guess better than nothing.

Clothing and gear

Dressing for a cold mountain and a hot desert in the same trip can present it’s challenges. I’m a frequent over-packer so I’ll need to really plan to keep it tight.

I’m checking my luggage at the hotel and carrying a 28L pack on the hike. My porter will carry 8kg/17.6lbs of clothing and the rest I’m hiking with.

This is what I’m bringing for hiking to Machu Picchu:

  • Hiking boots
  • Blue Jays Star Wars cap
  • Lululemons
  • Dry fit tee shirt
  • Long sleeve dry fit x2
  • Hiking convertable pants x2
  • Insulated sweater
  • McKinley shell jacket
  • Thermal pants
  • Running Socks/Hiking Socks/Underwear/Bras
  • Crocs
  • Sunscreen
  • Sunglasses
  • Gloves
  • Cell phone
  • Camera
  • External phone battery/cords
  • Protein Bars
  • 2L Water bladder
  • Hiking poles
  • Liquid skin
  • Small first aid kit
  • Debating sleeping bag liner as I’m renting bag but I’ve already spent a lot…

Flights and Accommodations

I usually end up booking a connecting flight; it is cheaper and I’m crazy like that. This time I have a quick lay over in Panama City before on to Lima,Peru. I’m flying Panamanian Copa Airlines and then local from Peruvian Airlines.



I work in the hotel industry so I have a good deal on a couple swanky hotels. Where they are not available I have booked modest accommodations and one night in a humbling hostel.
When I’m gone

At work I’m lucky to have coverage and I appreciate that. At home I have a loving suck of a cat I’ll be worried about. I have amazing volunteers/voluntolds that have a set visiting schedule.

Honestly….. Shane, Chelsea, Ryan and Mom thank you from the bottom of my big sappy Madison-loving heart. Ponchos for all!!! xo

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