If you're visiting Machu Picchu while you're in Peru - and why wouldn’t you? – there's a very good chance you'll pass through the small pueblo of Aguas Calientes en route. The gateway town to Machu Picchu, Aguas Calientes is nestled in a valley of cloud forest below the famous Incan site.

Make Aguas Calientes your base if you want to tour Machu Picchu in depth. It has all the facilities of a well set-up service town for visitors, including a varied collection of hostels, cabins, eco-lodges and hotels.

As you'd expect, the pueblo also has a well-rounded selection of restaurants, with a choice of local and European cuisine, as well as a lively choice of bars.

While you're here, unwind for a spell in the town's natural hot spring baths, off the central Avenue Pachacutec. You could also browse the souvenir stalls set up near the train station.

Practical Info

Aguas Calientes is the closest point of access for Machu Picchu, only 6km (4 miles) away. From Cusco, it's around a three-hour train journey to Aguas Calientes aboard the scenic Vistadome rail service.

Buses travel hourly from Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu, around 20 minutes away.

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