Rediscover Machu Picchu, the "Lost City of the Incas"! Complete travel guide to Machu Picchu, the Sacred Valley and other exciting parts of Peru with detailed information about the Inca civilization...
Welcome!Machu PicchuThe Sacred ValleyThe Inca CivilizationPeru & The AndesTravelling & ActivitiesResources

Machu Picchu's Irresponsible Exploitation

Location: Rediscover Machu Picchu > Machu Picchu > Machu Picchu's Irresponsible Exploitation





Tourism Will Destroy What Was Preserved For 500 Years!


Machu Picchu tourism is degrading the ancient Inca wonder. An estimated number of approximately 2000 people (as of 2010) a day arrive to the city on an average day. Quite a busy day for the old city that could have accommodated a maximum of 750 during its "glory years" in the Inca times...


If Pizarro's army hasn't found it, mass tourism has!


And what will tourism in Machu Picchu do to the great wonder constructed by the Incas?


Stones are already shifting, moving away, as a result of so many steps. Imagine: 2000 people a day. Each person has 2 legs. They take not hundreds, but thousands of steps during their visit. Millions of steps are taken in Machu Picchu every day.

The old Inca stairs, roads already bear some marks of mass tourism. If you have seen subway station stairs and shopping mall stairs eroded, moved out of place, shrunk under the rubbing of so many shoes and boots, then you can imagine what is going to happen to Machu Picchu!


The number of tourists per day was around 100 in 1992, then it has reached 2000, sometimes even 2.500 a day!


Unfortunately there are few official and reliable statistics about Machu Picchu's tourism. We know more about the numbers in 1992, 2003 and 2008, than we know about what it happening right now or 1 - 2 years before.

There has been a steady increase of visitors to the archaeological park in the 1990 and later even more, after the year 2.000. The media (travel guidebooks, newspapers, websites, TV and radio etc.) has strongly contributed to the popularization of Machu Picchu as a travel destination.


Not only Machu Picchu is in danger, but also the ancient Inca Trail - used by many hikers to get to Machu Picchu.

This mountain road that leads from the renowned km 88 spot near the railway lines is so crowded with tourists that one might not be able to book for a trip package 2 - 3 months in advance!

The authorities are probably taking more care of the Inca Trail than of Machu Picchu.

The number of hikers on the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu is limited and only authorized agencies are allowed by the Peruvian Authorities to offer trip packages on this trail. This ancient Inca road system is literally cut-off from the rest of the region. You aren't allowed to walk on it, unless you book a trip from an agency.


The Greed and Endless Exploitation


There were plans to construct an aerial tramway system to bring tourists all the way up to the ruins, to offer a more pleasant alternative to those wanting to get up there on the "Old Peak", without riding the bus on the serpentines.

Fortunately the plan was dropped.


Helicopter flights were operated to the peak, then later the location was changed to the town of Aguas Calientes. Sometimes these flights have ceased, then restarted again. Until, on June 22nd, 2010, the Peruvian authorities have banned helicopter flights in a wider area, which not only includes Machu Picchu, but a vast territory around it.


The town of Aguas Calientes (currently more often called Machu Picchu Pueblo) has grown to become a town, when several decades ago it only had a few houses. Today it is a hotel and restaurant "paradise" where pizzerias and even luxury hotels are multiplying.

Irresponsibly constructed buildings have filled the valley and they are in the way of the periodically angrily flooding Urubamba River. Like we have seen in early 2010, many constructions were destroyed by the massive force of nature, including the bent and broken railway lines.


Possible Solutions to a Responsible Tourism in Machu Picchu


UNESCO wanted to limit the number of visitors to a maximum of 5.000 a day. The Peruvian Government has received entry ticket price increase proposals.

These would certainly contribute to a better conservation of the ruins.


It might sound unfair to most enthusiasts, but if we want to preserve the archaeological park as well as possible, then visitor numbers must be limited and prices increased.


We might need to think about installing additional elements for protection, such as: carpets on the stairs and on the roads of Machu Picchu, in order to better preserve the rock elements from degrading.


Access limitation to certain areas, like the hill where the Intihuatana is could also help.


 What is Inside Machu Picchu?


Machu Picchu AttractionsCheck out this thorough guide which will unveil the sectors, the buildings and the purpose for which they were built...

[Read more...]



 Machu Picchu's Construction


Machu Picchu's ConstructionThe Incas had excellent skills when they built this city 2.400 m above sea level from hard rocks without the use of mortar...

[Read more...]


 Machu Picchu Maps


Machu Picchu MapsAccess orientative maps and schemes, as well as scaled virtual interactive maps of Machu Picchu and the area...

[Read more...]


 The Discovery of Machu Picchu


Machu Picchu's DiscoveryThe story about how Machu Picchu was discovered and speculations about previous visitors to the ruins...

[Read more...]


 Hike on the Inca Trail!


Inca Trail Hiking, Adventure TripsTravelers who hike on the Inca Trail get to see archaeological sites and spectacular Andean views that others won't!

[Read more...]


 Cuzco & Nearby Destinations


Cuzco & Surrounding AttractionsCuzco, the former capital of the Inca Empire and the region around it has some wonderful attractions that you mustn't miss when visiting Peru...

Cuzco (Cusco)




Puca Pucara


 The Sacred Valley of the Incas


The Sacred Valley of the IncasFantastic landscapes and Inca ruins characterize the Sacred Valley where the heart of the Inca Empire was...

Find out more about it!









 Exciting Peruvian Destinations!


Recommended Destinations in PeruPlaces that you might want to visit when travelling to Peru. From Inca and pre-Inca ruins to boasting big cities and rural areas there is a lot to see!

Chachapoyas, Kuelap & Surroundings

Chiclayo & Surroundings

Cajamarca & Surroundings

Trujillo, Chan Chan & Surroundings

Lima & Surroundings

Peruvian Amazon

Arequipa & Surroundings

Colca Canyon

Ica, Pisco & Surroundings

Nazca Lines

Lake Titicaca & Surroundings




Peru FlightsFor information about air travel possibilities to and from Peru and for flight ticket booking, please check this section...

[Read more...]




Peru, Cuzco, Machu Picchu Hotels

Presents recommended hotels near Machu Picchu and other parts of Peru. Helps you find a good place to stay...

[Read more...]




Trains, Machu Picchu Train SchedulesMachu Picchu train schedules, railway travel possibilities are presented in deep details for your convenience...

[Read more...]




Cuzco, Sacred Valley, Machu Picchu BusesBuses will take you where the planes and trains won't. Find out here about buses to Machu Picchu and the rest of Peru...

[Read more...]


 Tours/Trip Packages


Peru, Machu Picchu Tours/Trip PackagesRecommended tour operators and trip package-selling agents are listed here. Pick your trip package or tour with our help!...

[Read more...]


 Trip Planning


Trip Planning

If you are willing to travel to Machu Picchu, then you must plan everything from packing to getting there...

[Read more...]


 Place Finder Tool


Place Finder Tool

Looking for a place in Peru? Use this handy tool to find it on the map and even get its GPS coordinates!...

[Read more...]


 Live Weather & Climate Info


Live Weather Report & Climate InformationDetailed climate information and live weather report for multiple Peruvian locations...

[Read more...]


 Advertise on this Site!


Advertise with Featured Listings

Buy featured listings on relevant pages to target your clients efficiently and boost your business!

[Read more...]


 Photo Gallery


Photo GalleryFine quality photos of Machu Picchu and the rest of Peru. See the people and the beautiful places...

[Read more...]


 Video Gallery


Video GalleryCollection of carefully selected videos relevant to Peru, Machu Picchu, the Incas and related subjects.

[Read more...]


Website Information

About This Site

Why Choose Us?

Link to Us!

Contact Us


Terms of Use

Privacy Policy

Content Policy


Additional Services



Partners, Friends, Contributors...


Partners, Friends, Contributors


Thank you for choosing Rediscover Machu Picchu, the most popular and complete portal dedicated to Machu Picchu, the Incas and Peru travel opportunities!


We have been serving our visitors since 2006 and have received lots of encouraging, stimulating messages, reason why we have extended our services and have improved our site in order to better help you, regardless whether you are a backpacker traveler, an adventure travel-seeker, an Inca fan, archaeologist, professional photographer or even business traveler...


With us, you will be able to learn about Machu Picchu and the Incas, gather information about Peru, as well as plan your trip, easily choose and book for travel services.


We welcome you and encourage you to return to us frequently!

And, if you are planning to travel to Peru, we wish you a trip of a lifetime!


In case you have any questions, suggestions, ideas, remarks and business proposals, then don't hesitate to contact us!