While you are touring the Inca city, you can hike up Huayna Picchu (which means new mountain and is the mountain facing MP). You will get an incredible view of the ruins. The hike is approximately 400m up and is very steep. There are ropes and chains at points for you to pull yourself up. It takes between 20 and 45 mins each way.
Huayna Picchu is the really tall mountain you see in all the pictures. It is a hard climb but well worth it. You should make the time to do it.
It will take about three hours to climb to the top. There is much to see along the way and the view from the top is awesome.
Allow about 1 1/2 to 2 hours to get down. This is because it is very steep and you need to go slowly. This climb can be hard on the knees, but take some Aleve and do it!!
On the way down, I took the other path and walked downhill to the Temple of the Moon. In reality though, this are ruins in and on themselves. Since the ruins are not restores like the ones I saw on the trails and Machu Picchu, most have the same look as Hiram Bingham when he rediscovered Machu Picchu in 1911. The total walk from the deviation of the trail to Huayna Picchu to the Temple of the moon and back took me 1.5 hours.
Then, I hiked up Huayna Picchu, the famous tall peak that appears in the pictures. The hike took me 25 minutes, although a more realistic time for the unfit would have been 1 or more hours. Let me tell you, the hike there is worth it. The view on route and on the top of the ruins and the surroundings is amazing.
If you stay the night in Municipalidad Macchupichu, you will have the extra hours needed to get up on top om Huyna Picchu (the young montain).
Entry closes at 2 PM and you have to be out at 4 PM. You need 1 hour to get up, and 40 minutes to get down.
The ascent is around 400 m, it is very steep, but it is worth it!
Here is the checkpoint to hike Huayan Picchu. Its located on the bottom part of the compound past the sun dial.
You'll be rewarded with this full view of the Machu Picchu city and the zig-zaggy bus path leading up to the ruin.
According to my wife, this is the most frightening part, and the picture did not do justice to it. People turned to face the steps and climbed down on all four.
Behind the city you can see Huayna Picchu,peering through the low cloud,as if to remind us,`Hey I`m still here !!!`
This is the first impression you get when entering the archeological site. Near where you are standing are the southern terraces.
In the back ground the Huyana Picchu (the New Montain)