Machu Picchu in 10 amazing pictures

Fog over Machu Picchu
Image courtesy: Nitin Gairola

For many visitors to Peru and even South America, a visit to the Inca city of Machu Picchu is the long-anticipated highpoint of their trip. In a spectacular location, it’s the best-known archaeological site on the continent. This awe-inspiring ancient city was never revealed to the conquering Spaniards and was virtually forgotten until the early part of the 20th century. In the high season, from late May until early September, 2500 people arrive daily. Despite this great tourist influx, the site manages to retain an air of grandeur and mystery, and is a must for all visitors to Peru.

It’s not just the Machu Picchu ruins, but their dramatic setting on the Andean mountains that takes your breath away. Then there is the entire Sacred Valley, which offers stunning alpine views of snow-capped mountains, grasslands, Llamas grazing on the fields, not to mention more scattered ruins from the Incan Empire, and the final leg of the journey that leads to the historic Peru Rail to Aguas Calientes, the town at the base of Picchu.

Images and text: Nitin Gairola

With inputs from


The famous Peru Rail to Aguas Calientes, the town at base of Machu Picchu
Aguas Calientes, gateway to the South American world wonder
Waiting for the fog to lift over Machu Picchu
...and the fog lifts
The Palace Grounds
The steep mountain side
The Sacred Valley of the Incas near Machu Picchu
Cusco, the beautiful Incan town in the Sacred Valley
The dramatic Andean landscape
Ancient Incan Terrace farms of Moray
Top tip: the site is most heavily visited between 10am and 2pm. June through August are the busiest months.

AUTHOR'S BIO: Nitin Gairola is a globe-trotting photographer, a back-packing trekker, travel writer, poet and a keen student of earth science, history and world cultures besides having a proclivity towards philanthropy and human rights issues. He has travelled to many parts of the world in his quest for knowing more about the planet and its inhabitants. He can be reached at More on: