I was amazed at how incredible Machu Picchu is in person. I'd seen pictures of it and always thought they were incredible, but in person - WOW! We took the early morning bus at 6.30am and arrived at 7am to see our first glimpse of Machu Picchu through the fog - it was amazing! Marco, was a fantastic tour guide of everything along the way, but the amount of detail that he told us about Machu Picchu was amazing. It felt like a live history lesson and one that I most thoroughly enjoyed (I never liked history as a child, but this completely changed my view on it!) - I learned so much about the Inca's and even more exciting is that Marco has done a lot of his own research on the Inca's and has his OWN opinions of different things at Machu Picchu. It was so fun to hear his stories and theories as well as the standard stories of the Lost City of the Incas. After a couple hours with Marco, we had some free time to explore the place on our own. We walked up to the Sun Gate and highly recommend that - astonishing views of Machu Picchu from there. By noon, we had explored enough and were ready to head back down to Aguas Calientes. We were thankful we woke up so early, as by noon the crowds were incredibly thick - it was like Disneyland! In the early morning, I got many pictures of Machu Picchu with almost no people in the shots!
We took the 2.15pm train back to Ollantaytambo. The train ride was such a treat - probably the nicest train I've ever been on - luxurious seats and incredible views along the way back. From there, our driver picked us up and took us back to Cusco. Back to the Casa Andina hotel - another lovely selection!