Traveling as a family to the lost city of the Incas of Machu Picchu is a truly enriching experience and it is completely possible to do so without exposing children to unnecessary dangers.
How to visit Machu Picchu with kids?
- You can plan your visit to Machu Picchu in Cusco for 4 days.
- On day 1 you can visit Cusco. On day 2, travel to Aguas Calientes. On day 3, visit Machu Picchu. Finally, on the 4th you will return to the city of Cuzco.
- Machu Picchu is one of the best experiences you can have with your children.
- It will be one of those unforgettable moments that you treasure for the rest of your life.
- However, you must take your precautions. Machu Picchu is at 2430 meters above sea level (7,970 ft.). At that altitude, the symptoms of altitude sickness should be avoided.
What is the recommended age for children to visit Machu Picchu?
- Machu Picchu can be visited by children of any age.
- Even babies can visit the Inca City as long as they do so with a baby carrier kangaroo.
- A good option for children under 6 or 7 years old is to visit Machu Picchu in the company of an entertaining tour guide.
- Children under 8 years old do not pay their entrance to Machu Picchu.
- Children under 12 years old cannot enter the Huayna Picchu mountain.
What places to visit in Machu Picchu with kids?
- The Inca City of Machu Picchu offers constructions that can catch the child’s mind. The Temple of the Condor, for example, is a mysterious 3D building.
- The Machu Picchu mountain is one of the adventures allowed for children of any age. Climbing to the top is difficult but offers safe paths and beautiful scenery.
- A few meters from Aguas Calientes (Machu Picchu town) is the Site Museum. There is also a butterfly garden and botanical garden ideal to be visited with children.
How to be safe on your trip to Machu Picchu with kids?
- Most of the trails in Machu Picchu are stone paths that can be slippery.
- It is recommended to come with non-slip shoes. Especially if you visit the Inca City with children.
- Inside Machu Picchu there are hundreds of guards, marked barriers and security cords that no person should cross.
- Remember that parents or adults are the first responsible for the safety of children who must be closely watched.
How to buy the Machu Picchu tickets for children?
- To buy a ticket to Machu Picchu for children you must follow the following steps:
- Enter the website of the Ministry of Culture of Peru or that of an authorized tourism agency.
- Fill in your personal data and those of the child.
- Send a copy or digital photo of your passport (or identity document) of the father, mother and child.
- Make the payment by card (usually Visa or MasterCard).
- Print the tickets that you will receive in your email.
- Print your tickets and present them the day of your visit to Machu Picchu.
- Are there discounts at the entrance to Machu Picchu for children?
- People under 18 years of age have a discount on the normal price of the Machu Picchu entrance.
- Children under 8 years old do not pay their entrance to Machu Picchu.
- To access the special discount, parents or guardians must purchase the tickets by presenting the minor’s identity document or passport.
- Remember that children cannot enter Machu Picchu if it is not in the company of their parents or legal guardians.
How to get to Machu Picchu with kids?
The trip to Machu Picchu is made up of several short sections that must be done to reach the lost city of the Incas.
To access the Inca citadel with children, the best alternative that is the most common among travelers to Machu Picchu is to make the first section of the trip by bus, from the city of Cusco to the town of Ollantaytambo, a journey that has a Average duration of an hour and a half to two hours, with an average cost of S / .20.00 (USD 6). In the second section of this option, the railway must be approached from the town of Ollantaytambo to reach the town of Aguas Calientes after approximately two hours. The train tickets for children, in the two companies that offer the service (PeruRail and IncaRail) have an approximate discount of 40% to 50%. The final section in this option consists of choosing between going up from the town of Aguas Calientes to the citadel, located on top of a mountain, using the Conssetur company bus (average discount of 50% for children’s tickets) , or walk up, at no cost.
What clothes to wear to go to Machu Picchu with kids?
The weather in the Inca citadel is unpredictable, so it is recommended to dress children with different layers to change them according to the weather and the situation, because for example, you must have a hood or poncho for the rain, but you must also wear Light clothing to feel comfortable in the sub-tropical heat.
Alternatives in Machu Picchu when traveling with children
Apart from the Inca citadel of Machu Picchu, also known by the Quechua word ‘llaqta’ which means land, there are also other mountains to explore that are close to this wonder of the ancient world.
The Machu Picchu mountain is the most suitable alternative when traveling with children, since the ascent to this viewpoint located near 3000 meters above sea level is through a relatively flat and accessible path, away from the abysses, which can be traveled by a child without taking great risks.
The other alternative is the Huayna Picchu mountain, which is located right next to the Inca citadel and is the one that appears in most of the photos; Access to this mountain is restricted to children under 12 years of age, due to the narrowness of the steps or steps during the ascent and the dangerous abyss of almost 400 meters that is next to it.
If you visit the city of Cusco another impressive destinations that you can visit are the tour to rainbow mountain peru or the humantay lake tour from cusco, which only takes one day. But if you are gonna to stay more days in Cusco, other archaeological places you can know will be the choquequirao trek peru, the salkantay trek to machu picchu, and the classic inca trail 4 days 3 nights.
- Always confirm before leaving the hotel that you have with you: wide-brimmed hats, insect repellent, rain protection and high-grade sunscreen.
- It is not advisable to hire a tour guide in case of traveling with children, as they usually get bored and lose the rhythm of the guide.
- Enter the toilets with your children before entering the Sanctuary (once inside Machu Picchu you will not find services).
- Buy water and candy in Aguas Calientes since there are no stalls in the citadel.
- The entry of food is prohibited.
- In the town of Aguas Calientes there are some thermal baths (hot pools with hot underground water), where you can spend a really pleasant time in the company of your little ones. These pools are located outdoors and the cost of admission is S / 8 (USD 2.5). There are also small pools for children.
- It is not allowed to enter Machu Picchu with baby cars, so a backpack or hanger to transport your baby would be a good alternative.
- Do not forget to visit the ‘Wasi Pillpi’ (butterfly house in Quechua) butterfly farm in the town of Aguas Calientes, where you can appreciate some of the more than 400 species of butterflies registered in the Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu.
- Preferably carry only a backpack with everything valuable inside, as carrying several backpacks or hand luggage can be a headache, especially when traveling with children.
- Children are considered to be people between 8 and 17 years of age, for the purpose of purchasing tickets and others.