Machu Picchu is located in a unique location in the Andean geography of Cusco, Peru. Was it a coincidence? No, the Incas found in this beautiful mountainous landscape the ideal place to build one of the best works of the empire.
Machu Picchu location
The Inca citadel of Machu Picchu is located 112 kilometers northeast from the city of Cusco, in southern Peru (South America). It belongs to the district of Aguas Calientes in the province of Urubamba.
The Inca citadel is part of the Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu, an area of 32,592 hectares protected by the Peruvian State.
Machu Picchu is at a height of 2,430 meters above sea level.
The top of the Huayna Picchu mountain, a hiking trail within the archaeological site, is located 2,720 meters above sea level.
The top of Machu Picchu Mountain, also a hiking trail in the archaeological park, is 3,082 meters above sea level.
Machu Picchu is in the eastern part of the Andes Mountains, on the so-called ‘Vilcabamba batholith’ (an area rich in stone banks). It is crossed by two mountain ranges: the Urubamba mountain range and the Vilcanota mountain range.
It is surrounded by three mountains: Huayna Picchu, Putucusi and Machu Picchu mountain. The nearest snow-capped mountain is the huge Salkantay, the second highest in all of Cusco, located at 6,271 meters above sea level.
The waters of the famous Vilcanota River run through the ravines of Machu Picchu, located on a slope of approximately 500 meters.
Learn more about the location of Machu Picchu
Machu Picchu belongs to the province of Urubamba, in the department of Cusco, in southern Peru. Learn more about these magical places where it belongs.
- Peru, the country of all bloods
Peru is famous worldwide for the ceviche, Machu Picchu and for the cultural diversity of its people. The indigenous writer José María Arguedas published a book whose title states that Peru is the country “of all bloods”.
It is that throughout its history, miscegenation in Peru has generated a very striking ethnic and cultural diversity. It has an arid coastline, a chain of cold mountains created by the Andes Mountains and an immense Amazon rainforest. In each of these regions there is much to discover.
It has highly visited tourist attractions such as the city of Lima (Lima), the Nazca lines (Ica), the Colca canyon (Arequipa), Lake Titicaca (Puno), the jungle city of Iquitos (Loreto), the Sacred Valley of the Incas (Cusco), the mountain of the 7 colors (Cusco) and, above all, the Inca city of Machu Picchu (Cusco).
- Cusco, the navel of the world
Cusco is one of the most important regions of the country. It is considered ‘historical capital of Peru because it was the capital of the Inca empire, the Tahuantinsuyo.
Its name comes from a Quechua word that means ‘Navel of the world’ or ‘Center of the universe’. For the Incas it was a sacred city, where the main temple in honor of the sun, the Coricancha, was located.
At the top of the city is Sacsayhuaman, a mysterious construction made of 120-ton stone blocks that fit together perfectly. And a few kilometers further on is the Sacred Valley of the Incas, an immense area full of Inca cities and a lot of tradition.
But of all the many tourist attractions, the most famous, without a doubt, is Machu Picchu. Every year 1.5 million tourists visit the Inca city. But Cusco offers more: the historic South Valley, the Humantay lagoon and the 7 colors mountain, one of the most beautiful landscapes in Peru.
- Aguas Calientes, the most touristic town in Peru
Aguas Calientes is also known as Machu Picchu town because it is the closest town to the Inca city. It is only 10 kilometers from Machu Picchu so thousands of tourists congregate there every day. It is the most touristic town in Peru.
Many tourists like to spend a night in Aguas Calientes so they can enjoy Machu Picchu the next day with more time and freedom. That is why in Aguas Calientes there are hotels of all kinds, from luxurious 5 stars to economic services for ‘backpackers’.
Aguas Calientes also offers various tourist services such as restaurants, cafes, bars and more. Likewise, in the town you can enjoy waterfalls, mountains, beautiful landscapes and relaxing thermal baths.