The bus from Ollanta to Santa Maria leaves from the northwest corner of the Plaza de Armas between 9-10am. The company we took was Turismo Ampay and it cost S/20 (CAD$6.80).
So we ended up standing for about 5 hours. Luckily enough there was a pit stop half way while the road was closed for 30 minutes. We bought what snacks we could to refuel for the rest of the journey. Unfortunately, we had very little cash on us and the best we could do was original Lays and Fanta. We were grateful for the sugar boost though!
Upon arrival at Santa Maria there was a combi ready and primed to take us to Santa Teresa (S/10, CAD$3.40). It all happened so quickly that I barely remember what happened at all. As many people as possible bundled into the combi to Santa Teresa. At Santa Teresa we were all immediately bundled into another combi on to the hydro-electric plant for S/4 (CAD$1.4).
From the hydro-electric station it is a 2 hour hike that is well-trodden and easy to follow on to Aguas Calientes. There is an option to take a train from the hydro-electric station to Aguas Calientes for S/15 (CAD$5), but the walk is beautiful and well worth the hike. Looking from the bridge at the beginning of the trail you can see the back of Machu Picchu. The walk requires bug spray, sunscreen, and long pants.
We made it to Aguas Calientes by 6pm. We walked into the first hostel we had on our list. Hostal Los Caminantes (S/50, CAD$17 for a private double room with private bathroom per night) is on Avenida Imperio de Los Incas, which is the main street in town. The hostel has a great central location, however it was a little noisy as the cargo train loads and unloads right outside. The hostel was clean, the shower was hot, and the view was great. What more could you ask for?
Despite the overpriced tourist restaurants on Los Incas we managed to find a tasty pizza place that had a family sized pizza for S/25 (CAD$8.50). Exactly what our family sized appetites needed. Who knew you could accomplish so much fueled purely on Lays potato chips and a bottle of Fanta!
A family sized pizza and an early night was exactly what we needed to prepare for our early morning adventure up to Machu Picchu!
- Aguas Calientes – Aguas Calientes, Peru (travelpod.com)
- aMAZEing – Machu Picchu, Peru (travelpod.com)
- Inca Trail and Inca Ruins – Cusco, Peru (travelpod.com)
- A Stylish French Restaurant in a tiny Peruvian village – Who would have thunk it? (bootsnall.com)