Best Time to Visit Machu Picchu
The most popular time to visit Machu Picchu is during our summer months of June, July, and August. Crowds of tourists swarm the mysterious citadel like so many ants around a particularly delicious breadcrumb. It’s impossible to take a picture that doesn’t include throngs of tourists in the background.
The first time I went to Machu Picchu, it was July. Tourists’ voices carried up to my hotel room as early as 4:30 a.m. as people lined up to take the first buses to the park. By 6:15 the line extended so far I thought it would be hours before we’d be able to board a bus. Luckily, it was only 45 minutes or so. But, every bus was packed to capacity and when I arrived the famed Inca ruins were overrun.
Since then I’ve returned to Machu Picchu twice, once more by bus in September and once via the Inca Trail in April. In both instances, I found the park empty. I couldn’t believe my luck. Machu Picchu stretched breathtakingly before me with nary a tourist in sight.
I’d trade in the summer crowds at Machu Picchu anytime for the solitude and splendor of the spring and fall. In my opinion, these truly are the best times to visit Machu Picchu.