Is Machu Picchu Closing?

Is Machu Picchu closing? When is Machu Picchu closing? Or is it true that Machu Picchu is closing? Those are the most common question that I am always asked when guiding group tours to Machu Picchu; there were even a few of my guests when I asked why they decided to come to Peru or Machu Picchu, the answer I got was because they heard that Machu Picchu was closing soon and they wanted to visit before then.

Machu Picchu was temporarily closed from January 21st, 2023, until February 11th, 2023. This extreme measure was taken due to Peru's political crisis and civil unrest to guarantee all our staff and guests' safety and security.

Machu Picchu has been open to travelers since February 12th, 2023, and we have travelers entering the citadel. The Inca Trail will be open on March 1st, 2023, as usual, after Mantainance in February. All tours after March 1st and confirmed and will depart. 

However, this article is not about the temporary closure of Machu Picchu. This page will explain the rumors that Machu Picchu might be closed permanently due to many factors. 

All this mass hysteria started a few years ago when Machu Picchu was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. As they seek to encourage the protection and preservation of all-natural and cultural heritage worldwide, Machu Picchu was included in the list of endangered sites. This could be why they were rumors that Machu Picchu was closing soon, as new rules were implemented to protect it from destruction and preserve it for future generations.

Machu Picchu is not closing due to natural erosion or destruction caused by the thousands of visitors daily. To Protect this World Heritage Site, Machu Picchu Authorities have implemented new regulations, including curfews and limiting the daily visitors per hour.

Machu Picchu During 2023

  • Machu Picchu's temporary closure this 2023

Machu Picchu is fully open, and hundreds of travelers enter daily. It was closed temporarily due to the political crisis in Peru from January 21st, 2023, to February 11th, 2023. 

  • Was Machu Picchu closed during Covid 19?

Machu Picchu was closed during the Pandemic 2020-2021 due to the first, second, and third waves of Covid 19. Some regions in Peru, Including Lima, Cusco, and others, were under strict lockdown for several months.

International travel is now allowed for all travelers, and there are no travel restrictions related to Covid 19.  

  • Is Machu Picchu open for visitors?

Yes, Machu Picchu and all Inca sites and tourist attractions are open for travelers. 

  • Is Machu Picchu Closed In February?

Machu Picchu is open all year round. Machu Picchu will not be closed in the rainy season. 

The Classic Inca Trail 4 days and the Short Inca 2 days will be closed during February every year for maintenance; this does not include Machu Picchu. 

We still have a trekking tour to Machu Picchu during February; the best and most recommended trek is the Lares Trek to Machu Picchu for 4 days.

Machu Picchu Opening Time?

Machu Picchu opens every day at 6:00 am. To arrive and enter with the first ones, you must take the first buses from Aguas Calientes or start hiking from the town at 4.30 am.

Machu Picchu Closing Time?

Machu's main entrance closes at 4:00 pm. However, the latest entrance shift that can be bought is the 2:00 pm shift. This means that if you are traveling from Cusco during the day to enter Machu Picchu in the afternoon and you are running late, you have until 4:00 pm to arrive at the main entrance; once it is closed, there is no option to enter.

After 4:00 pm, some areas in Machu Picchu start closing; after 5:00 pm, the rangers in the park will begin asking people to exit; at 5.30 pm usually, there are no more visitors in the citadel of Machu Picchu, and at 6:00 pm is the official closing time, and this is also the time that the last bus is leaving the citadel of Machu Pichu to the town of Aguas Calientes.

Machu Picchu FAQs

  • What Month Is Machu Picchu Closed?

Machu Picchu is never closed; the citadel is open all year round.

  • Is Machu Picchu closing due to erosion?

No, Machu Picchu will not close due to erosion, and it was never closed for this reason. Only during the Pandemic 2020 - 2021 was it closed. 

  • Is Classic Inca Trail 4 days to Machu Picchu Closed?

The Inca Trail was closed in the last week of January 2020 due to a rock slide in the Second Campsite called Pacaymayo Alto. The trail was expected to reopen on March 1st, 2020. However, the closure was extended for 2 more weeks because of the heavy rains.

During the Pandemic, the Peruvian government imposed one of the most strict quarantines on March 16th, 2020, to prevent the spread of Covid 19, and all tourist places were shut down. Inca Trail has been closed since March 2021, when it was open at a 50% capacity. Nowadays, the Classic Inca Trail is fully open. 

Today Inca Trail is closed. However, departures after March 1st are all confirmed.

  • Is Inca Trail Closed in February?

Yes, The Inca Trail 4 days and the Short Inca Trail 2 days are closed every February for Maintainance. This should not be confused with Machu Picchu, which is open all year round.

Machu Picchu reopens after Covid closure
Machu Picchu reopens after Covid closing.

Machu Picchu Entrance Tickets for 2023 and 2024

If you're planning a trip to Machu Picchu, purchase your entrance tickets well in advance. Tickets for 2022  are almost all sold out, and the 2023 season will be on sale soon, and the earlier you buy them, the better. You can purchase tickets online with tour operators like TreXperience or directly on the government website. Ensure your passport and other required documentation when purchasing your ticket.

Machu Picchu regular tickets

  • First Shift to Machu Picchu: 6:00 am

The entrance to Machu Picchu e starts at 6 am; you must board the first buses from Aguas Calientes at 5.30 am. To arrive at Machu Picchu, you must make sure you are spending the night before at Aguas Calientes town (Machu Picchu Pueblo). After exploring the citadel, you will exit around 10 to 10:30 am.

  • Second Shift to Machu Picchu: 7:00 am

The Entrance to Machu Picchu starts at 7 am. You cant enter before this time. The bus ride from Aguas Calientes takes around 3o minutes; also, you must consider that the bus lines could take almost 30 to 45 minutes in high season. The exit time is approximately 11. am.

  • Third Shift to Machu Picchu: 8:00 am

The entrance to the citadel starts at 8 am. You must always consider the 30-minute bus drive and lines for this bus. You will exit the citadel around noon.

  • Fourth Shift to Machu Picchu: 9:00 am

The entrance to Machu Picchu starts at 9:AM. This shift is perfect for those traveling from Cusco or the Sacred Valley early trains. The exit time is around 1: p.m.

  • Fifth Shift to Machu Picchu: 10 am

The entrance starts at 10 am. At this time, the sun can be extreme; use sun protection; the exit time is around 2:pm

  • Sixth Shift to Machu Picchu: 11 am

The entrance starts at 11 am; ensure you have eaten something before entering Machu Picchu, as you won't find any stores inside. The exit time is around 3 pm.

  • Seventh Shift to Machu Picchu: 12 pm

The entrance to the site starts at noon; you must have lunch before this time. Once you are inside Machu Picchu, you won't have access to any stores. The exit time is around 4 pm.

  • Eighth Shift to Machu Picchu: 1 pm

The afternoon entrance starts at 1 pm, Have plenty of water with you, and always rain gear just in case. The Exit time is around 5 pm.

  • Ninth Shift to Machu Picchu: 14 pm

The last shift starts at 2 pm, and you can enter until 4 pm; you must try to arrive at the designated time (2 pm) as many sites will start closing after 4 pm. Machu Picchu closes at 6 pm, and you must exit around 5.30 pm at the latest.

Machu Picchu + Huayna Picchu Entrance Tickets

  • First Shift: 6 am Machu Picchu / 7: am to 8: am Huayna Picchu Mountain

This ticket allows you to enter Machu Picchu from 6 am and 7 am to 8 am at Huayna Picchu Mountain. There are only 200 spaces per day, and you must book in advance.

  • Second Shift: 7 am Machu Picchu/ 7: am to 8: am Huayna Picchu Mountain

This ticket allows you to enter Machu Picchu after 7 am and Huayna Picchu Mountain from 7 am to 8 am. There are only 200 spaces per day, and you must book in advance. Make sure to arrive on time.

  • Third Shift: 8 am to Machu Picchu / 10 am to 11 am Huayna Picchu Mountain

This ticket allows you to enter Machu Picchu after 8 am and from 10 am to 11 am to Huayna Picchu Mountain. The perfect shift for all our day tours and trekking tours.

Machu Picchu + Machu Picchu Mountain Entrance Tickets

  • First Shift: 6 am Machu Picchu / 7: am to 8: am Machu Picchu Mountain

This ticket allows you to enter Machu Picchu from 6 am and 7 am to 8 am; at Machu Picchu Mountain ( Also called montaña). There are only 200 spaces per day, and you must book in advance.

  • Second Shift: 7 am Machu Picchu/ 7: am to 8: am Machu Picchu Mountain

This ticket allows you to enter Machu Picchu after 7 am and to Machu Picchu Mountain from 7 am to 8 am.

  • Third Shift: 8 am to Machu Picchu / 10 am to 11 am Machu Picchu Mountain

This ticket allows you to enter Machu Picchu after 8 am and from 9 am to 10 am to Machu Picchu Mountain.

Huchuy Picchu + Circuit 4

This ticket allows you to enter Machu Picchu after 7 am and takes you to explore Machu Picchu through the lower part. There are 200 tickets available every day to access this place. 

You can choose the shift that is more convenient for you. 7a m, 8 am, 9 am, 10 am, 11 am, 12 pm. 1 pm, 2 pm.

Inca Bridge + Circuit 1 or 2

This is one of the newest circuits/tickets to visit Machu Picchu. This option is the regular Machu Picchu ticket + an extra hike to Inca Bridge.

The hike to the Inca Bridge is around 30 minutes, a total of 1 hour round trip. It's important to note that the trail is narrow and steep and not recommended for travelers with vertigo. 

You can choose different shifts from: 7am, 8am, 9am, 10am, 11am, 12pm. 13pm, 14pm. 

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