There are more than 40 thousand kilometers of roadways and trails that connect the different archaeological sites within the empire. The edges of this great civilization stretched from high in modern Ecuador to low in Chile and inland to the middle of Argentina. Cuzco was the heart of the complex though it was supported by many other amazing cities.
Though the network of trails laid by the Inca is vast and complex, there is a particular 43 kilometer stretch that has become something of an epic vacation must. Winding through the mountains, this roadway connects several key archaeological sites associated with this empire, ending at the beautifully intriguing Machu Picchu. The journey is filled with amazing views and simply sings with history.
Because of its huge appeal to hikers and folks who have a have a keen interest in ancient civilizations, this trail has grown tremendously popular over the last three decades. As if traveling high in the Andes mountains of Peru and taking in every breathtaking view were not amazing enough, trekkers will also be exposed to a taste of life in the rain forest and jungles of the region. Because of the incredible demand, it has become necessary for the government to control access to this zone.
The government of Peru is dedicated to preserving the integrity and beauty of these amazing archaeological landmarks and a large part of that is by strictly controlling the number of people allowed to enter the area at any given time. Anyone trekking the trail must be granted a permit and all guides are required to hold the appropriate licenses. Only a select few companies are actually authorized to offer this vacation option.
The government of Peru strictly controls access to these sites and is very serious about preservation of these historical treasures. They only allow a maximum of 500 people to hold permits per day, which includes all visitors, guides and support staff. Treks are only granted for eleven months of the year as February is reserved and dedicated to various conservation efforts and projects.
Treks are offered in two, four and seven day lengths though only a specified number of tours are allowed per month. Because of the imbalance between the high volume of people who are seeking this experience and the limited amount of positions that are available, interested parties have to begin their bid for permits many months in advance. The process by which they are obtained is a rather complicated one.
The Inca Trail to Machu Picchu is a by-permit-only vacation destination that is only obtainable through a highly regulated process. Even the trekking organizations have to compete in a lottery type of activity if they wish to be granted access to the site throughout the year. In order to gain permission to travel this journey, applicants will first need to meet strict passport requirements.
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