If there was anything I wanted to achieve in this lifetime, it was to go to Machu Picchu.
Well guess what - I finally got there and before I turned 50 (yes I do still have quite a few more years to go before I get there!)
All that you would expect and more.
We had a fun (and somewhat emotional) train journey there - Master 3 in particular loved the trip.
Little Miss 8 was just happy to have some quiet time to play her 3DS.
The train was a wonderful part of the trip as it really allowed us to focus on where we were going and why - you could see that everyone who was on the train were very much looking forward to their trip.
And who doesn't love a good train trip?
Machu Picchu Pueblo is a lovely place - very touristy but we had fun wondering the little streets and promised the kids we would take them to the hot springs the following afternoon, once we had been to Machu Picchu.
To them, the hot springs was the highlight (and the ice cream we purchased at Ollantaytambo while waiting for the train) - to us it was the very awe-inspiring mountains and set of complexes that hopefully once they are older will come to appreciate.
Our only issue was that we wished we had stayed in Machu Picchu Pueblo longer than the one evening.
We (and the kids) were very tired after a bus and train trip on the first day, a 5am start on the second day, a walk around the complex, a trip to the springs and then the return train and bus journey home. But hindsight is a great thing.
So if you are going to Machu Picchu - my recommendation is not to rush the trip.
There is no shortage of hotels and good restaraunts in the town so take the time to appreciate it a bit more - after all it is probably a once in a lifetime trip for most people who visit the area and the ruins.
And yes it is as awesome as the photos make out.
Michelle - traveller, writer, mother, lover and friend.