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Machu Picchu Regulations

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Machu Picchu is unarguably one of the most famous and popular sites in South America and an iconic site within the world of travel. In 2007, Machu Picchu was voted one of the New Seven Wonders of the World.

The number of visitors to Machu Picchu each year has grown from the low 100,000s in the 1980s, to a peak of nearly 1.4 million tourists in 2014 – an approximate increase of 700%! This increased traffic is slowly “wearing away” the famed site.

To protect the archaeological site, there will be new admission rules for visiting the citadel.

The change is an attempt to manage the crowd, easing the stress on the fragile ruins. It means a little more red tape, but with the greater good in mind, keeping Machu Picchu in great shape and accessible for future travelers. Authorities in Peru have been considering the change for some years, seeing it as both logical and eco-friendly.

Ticket sales will be divided into a morning ticket (8:00 AM to 12:00 PM) and an afternoon ticket (12:00 PM to 5:30 PM). There will of course be an option to buy both the morning and afternoon ticket, giving travelers a recommended full day in the ruins.

There are 3, one-way circuits (routes) that must be adhered to.

The maximum time a person can remain in the ruins is 4 hours. This is monitored as below:

  1. A specific colored sticker will be placed according to the time you entered the ruins. Each hour will have a different color.
  2. The 3 circuits (routes), work as one-way corridors, with the park rangers located at the control posts along the circuits, with the goal of identifying the travelers whose visiting time is over according to the color of their sticker.

Your first visit to the ruins must be a guided tour. People wishing to enter Machu Picchu a second time may do so without a guide in the afternoon or the following morning, as long as they show their first entry ticket at the entry gate. To re-enter Machu Picchu without a guide, you must keep the stamped ticket from your first entry. If you do not have the ticket, you will be required to find a guide and hire their services before entering.

Items NOT allowed in Machu Picchu

  • Bags carried in the ruins of Machu Picchu CAN NOT exceed 40 × 35 × 20 centimetres – 15 x 13 x 8 inches - in size. Bags larger than this can be stored in lockers (for a fee) near the entrance.
  • No food of any type
  • No aerosol cans (bug spray)
  • No umbrellas (hats and raincoats are permitted)
  • No tripod supports or extensions for cameras, this also applies to selfie sticks or other equipment to film and or take photos, unless authorized by the Cusco Culture Department
  • No musical instruments, megaphones or speakers
  • No strollers/prams or baby carriages. Only baby backpacks that do not have metal frames are permitted
  • High heels or hard-sole shoes
  • Walking sticks with metal tips

No climbing on the ruins or touching or removing stones
Leaving the designated pathways
Feeding the resident Llamas
Use of drones
Filming and photographing for advertising purposes

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