The culmination of the 3-night, 4-day Inca Trail trek is the arrival at the famous citadel of Machu Picchu, in Peru. The anticipation of seeing it builds each day, and when the fog lifts early in the morning to reveal all of those terraces and stone blocks, the feeling of accomplishment is overwhelming.
I'd highly recommend doing the Trail instead of taking a bus up to see it. There are many other sites that can be seen only if you are on the trail, and the experience is extremely rewarding. We went with Peru Treks, who treated us like royalty and were very friendly.
Machu Picchu is a sight to be seen with your own eyes, not on a postcard!
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After four days on the Inka Trail our reward was Machu Picchu at sunrise through the sungate. Took this shot a bit later as clouds rolled in. The hike and the breathtaking experience of seeing Machu Picchu at dawn were well worth it. The trip of a lifetime indeed!
I decided to celebrate my 58th birthday week by hiking the Inca Trail, a three day trek that started at Ollantaytambo and ended at the famed Machu Picchu ruins. I started out with a tour group but they were about speed; I like to take photos and enjoy the journey. I spent a significant portion of the hike on my own with my ipod playing an album by a group called Mumford and Sons, released the week before. Probably the maiden voyage of the album "Babel" along the ancient trail and my own personal soundtrack.