Machu Picchu

I just realized that this post is over a week late! This will be a short post since the views are self explanatory and I still have to post about Lake Titicaca. 

When we went up to Machu Picchu, we took the first day to settle in to our luxury hotel rooms (with hot showers!). We explored the forest and trekked to some freezing waterfalls on the first day, but the second day was when we took the bus to the archaeological site. We had passes to hike up Wayna Picchu, the large mountain. It was challenging. One student fell and ripped a hole in his pants because parts were basically rock climbing. Finishing it without incident made me so happy. I used to be the girl with bad asthma who wasn't even able to run a mile. Now I'm climbing mountains. 

With each step, the view kept getting better and better. In the picture below, you can see how tiny Machu Picchu looks in the background. You can also see it's in the shape of the condor if you turn your head and squint. 

When we hiked back down to explore Machu Picchu, I couldn't help but think what it must have been like to live in this place. Despite the amount of tourists, it was incredibly peaceful and green. The meticulousness that the Incans had building this site was undeniable. Nowadays, it takes so little time to assemble a house or build a building. Structures come and go in our society, but Incans built their structures to last. That kind of planning speaks to the mentality of the people.

I have an interesting story that I'll probably share in a different post, but when we returned to Machu Picchu Pueblo, I made a monkey friend. You can see the little monkey sitting on my shoulder. 
Tiny monkey on my back!
By the way, as a side note,  if any of you are planning on going to Machu Picchu, I would not recommend staying in Machu Picchu Pueblo. The prices of everything are three times as high as usual, and every time you walk on the street, people are shoving menus in your face or asking multiple times if you want a massage.