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Portada / About Peru /  Machu Picchu Information / Mountain Huayna Picchu

Mountain Huayna Picchu

One of the guardians of the citadel of Machu Picchu is Huayna Picchu Mountain (Wayna Picchu). Learn about the information of this mountain.
Montaña Huayna Picchu Fuente: CuscoPeru.Com
The mountain that appears in the popular photo of Machu Picchu is Huayna Picchu Mountain (Wayna Picchu).

The mountain Huayna Picchu or Wayna Picchu is located at an altitude of 2,667 meters on the north side of the Machu Picchu citadel. The trail to reach the top of this mountain is challenging, as it includes stairs and very steep, narrow paths. 

This journey is not recommended for people who suffer from vertigo, nor is it advisable for children under 12 years of age or the elderly.

What does Huayna Picchu mean?

Huayna Picchu is a word that comes from Quechua “Wayna” meaning young and “Picchu” meaning mountain, its translation would be “Young Mountain”. It is considered the antonym of the also famous Machu Picchu mountain, which means “Old Mountain”. 

This name is given to compare both mountains, with Huayna Picchu being smaller than Machu Picchu mountain. In most photos, the Machu Picchu mountain is not visible, only Huayna Picchu.

Information about the Huayna Picchu mountain

Location and how to get there

The Huayna Picchu mountain is located north of Machu Picchu at an altitude of 2,667 m, part of the Andes Mountain Range. Its base is surrounded by the Urubamba River that crosses the entire Sacred Valley of the Incas.

To enter this mountain you must purchase the ticket for Royalty Circuit 3 or Lower Part + Huayna Picchu which includes entrance to the Machu Picchu citadel + Huayna Picchu Mountain, as well as the visit to the Inka House (La Casa del Inca), the Temple of the Sun (Templo del Sol), the Water Mirrors (Los Espejos de Agua), the agricultural zone, and the Sacred Rock (La Roca Sagrada).

Description and features

The trail to reach the summit of the Huayna Picchu mountain is very difficult as it has narrow and steep sections and includes various sectors with stairs carved into the rock itself. 

Along the way, you will also be surrounded by abundant vegetation, giving the sensation of being in an unexplored place. If you are lucky, you may encounter wildlife in its natural habitat.

Climate and best times to visit

The Huayna Picchu mountain generally has clear weather throughout the day, with strong winds due to the altitude. However, during the rainy season, it tends to be cloudy with light rains.

The temperature on Huayna Picchu mountain ranges between 19°C and 21°C at its highest and between 8°C and 11°C at its lowest. However, at night it can drop to 0°C.

The best time to climb the mountain is during the dry season, which runs from April to October, as it doesn't rain frequently during this period, and the paths are not slippery or wet. Additionally, the view of the citadel is better because it is usually not covered by clouds.

Routes and important stops on the ascent to Huayna Picchu (Wayna Picchu)

Temple of the Moon

The Temple of the Moon (Templo de la Luna) is one of the most incredible structures within the Machu Picchu citadel. This place is also known as "The Hidden Jewel of Machu Picchu" because it is located within a natural cave on Huayna Picchu almost 1 Km from the top of the Mountain. It is not often visited due to its remoteness and challenging path. 

Features

  • Being built inside a natural cave, you can see the rock carved in the same place.
  • In the middle of the Temple of the Moon, there is a structure that could have served as an altar or throne.
  • The path to the Temple of the Moon is one of the most difficult due to the elevation of the steps.

Entry times for visiting Huayna Picchu

The entry times for Huayna Picchu mountain are divided into groups of 50 people each, as only 325 people are allowed per day.

First group

  • Entry to Machu Picchu: From 6 a.m.
  • Entry to Huayna Picchu: Between 7 a.m. and 8 a.m.

Second group

  • Entry to Machu Picchu: From 7 a.m.
  • Entry to Huayna Picchu: Between 8 a.m. and 9 a.m.

Third group

  • Entry to Machu Picchu: From 8 a.m.
  • Entry to Huayna Picchu: Between 9 a.m. and 10 a.m.


Fourth group

  • Entry to Machu Picchu: From 9 a.m.
  • Entry to Huayna Picchu: Between 10 a.m. and 11 a.m.

Rates and cost of entry to Huayna Picchu mountain

To reach Huayna Picchu, you must purchase the entry ticket to the Machu Picchu Citadel in advance and buy another ticket for the Huayna Picchu mountain.

The Royalty Circuit 3 or Lower Part + Huayna Picchu ticket, which includes entry to Machu Picchu + Huayna Picchu, allows you to reach the summit of Huayna Picchu mountain and visit the lower part of Machu Picchu, namely, only the urban sector, in addition to the visit to the Inka House, the Temple of the Sun, the Water Mirrors, the agricultural area, and the Sacred Rock. The tour lasts approximately 3 h.

Important differences between Machu Picchu and Huayna Picchu mountains

To make your choice easier, we present a comparative table of both paths:

Differences Huayna Picchu Mountain Machu Picchu Mountain
Location North of the Machu Picchu citadel South of the Machu Picchu citadel
Altitude 2,693 m.a.s.l. 3,082 m.a.s.l.
Distance 2 Km, elevation gain 290 m 2 Km, elevation gain 200 m
Hiking time 3 h (ascent and descent) 4 h (ascent and descent)
Access Huayranas sector Detour at Guardian’s House
Entry times Group 1 from 7am – 8am
Group 2 from 8am – 9am
Group 3 from 9am - 10am
Group 4 from 10am – 11am
Group 1 from 7am – 8am
Group 2 from 8am – 9am
Number of visitors 325 people per day 250 people per day
Circuit Circuit 3 - Waynapicchu Route Circuit 1 - Machu Picchu Mountain Route
Re-entry Does not allow re-entry to the citadel Allows re-entry to the citadel
Archaeological attractions Terraces and Temple of the Moon None
Age restrictions Only for those over 12 years old For all audiences
Difficulty Medium-High Medium

Frequently asked questions about Huayna Picchu mountain

What is Huayna Picchu mountain?

Huayna Picchu Mountain is the famous mountain that appears in all the photographs of Machu Picchu.

Where is Huayna Picchu mountain located?

Huayna Picchu mountain is located on the north side of the Inca citadel, it is the mountain that appears in the famous photo of Machu Picchu.

What does the name "Huayna Picchu" mean?

Huayna Picchu comes from Quechua “Wayna” meaning young and “Picchu” meaning mountain, its translation would be “Young Mountain”.

Is it necessary to book in advance to climb Huayna Picchu?

Yes, to find availability on the day you wish to travel, it is necessary to book 6 months in advance.

How much does the entrance ticket to Huayna Picchu cost?

The ticket costs approximately 55 USD per person. 

How long does it take to go up and down Huayna Picchu?

The approximate time is 3 h for both ascent and descent.

Are there age restrictions for climbing Huayna Picchu?

To climb Huayna Picchu mountain, you must be at least 12 years old, due to the steep trail.

Is Huayna Picchu mountain dangerous?

Huayna Picchu mountain is not dangerous for tourists, but it is challenging. However, certain precautions should be taken in some sections of the mountain.

Can I visit Machu Picchu and Huayna Picchu on the same day?

Yes, it is possible to visit both attractions on the same day by purchasing the ticket that includes Machu Picchu + Huayna Picchu mountain.

Are trekking poles allowed during the hike to Huayna Picchu?

Only trekking poles with rubber tips are allowed, as regular ones damage the ground. It is also advisable not to bring them because you will need your hands free to help yourself along the way.

Can I find tour guides for Huayna Picchu?

Of course, you can find a tour guide to climb this mountain, but it is optional.