Built in the fifteenth century, the Machu Picchu Historic Sanctuary is rich in cultural significance. It is not only a singular work of art but also a marvel of architecture. This is why, even today, many people want to visit and hike in the area; however doing this is no easy task. For example, do you need hiking boots for Machu Picchu is among the questions many ask?
Choosing what to bring to Machu Picchu can be difficult, especially if you are unfamiliar with Peru’s topography, climate, travel restrictions, and laws. You will require varying amounts of clothing, equipment, and supplies for your trek, as well as some items that are prohibited along the way, depending on how you plan to visit the renowned Incan fortress.
Best Hiking Boots for Machu Picchu
The Quechua name Machu Picchu corresponds to “Old Mountain.” Considerably appropriate for the sacred peaks of the Incan site, right? It is still unknown why Machu Picchu was constructed in the fifteenth century. Some say it might have served as a major site of prayer, a location for stargazing, or a stopover for the Incan royal family as they traveled.
It is situated atop a mountain 2,430 meters high in a tropical forest and is regarded as one of the most important heritage sites in the entire world. As a result, the location also features breathtaking scenery, a wide variety of flora and animals, and several interesting plazas, temples, and tombs to discover. In line with this, Machu Picchu gets thousands of visitors each year.
But to enjoy this trip, there are a couple of things one needs to consider, such as the season. From May to October, the dry season is the ideal time to visit Machu Picchu. Although the high season is the busiest because of the warmer and drier weather, many who want to avoid the crowds prefer to travel during the shoulder seasons.
While March to April and October to December are wetter and a little colder than other months, they make up for it by being calmer. So it’s worth thinking about these months for your walk if you don’t mind being wet! However, whatever the season you will be visiting the site, there is one really important thing; choice of shoes! Whether you opt for the four-day or one-day excursion, you will want hiking boots or shoes.
Before you embark on your adventure, you should ensure they are thoroughly broken in. Blisters or toenail loss are two pleasant side effects of wearing new hiking shoes on a hike. However, I think it’s safe to say that’s not ideal. Bring a spare pair of footwear, such as sandals, if you want to camp along the route. Additionally, you’ll need plenty of wool socks to keep your feet as toasty and dry as possible.
Best Hiking Boots for Inca Trail
The Inca Trail, also known as the Camino de Inca, runs from Peru’s Sacred Valley to Machu Picchu in the Andes Mountain Range. Although there are other routes, such as the Salcantay Route and Lares Route, it is the most well-liked trail for hikers following the scenic route to Machu Picchu. Most people need four days to complete the traditional Inca Trail, which includes permits and guides.
Daily, just 500 permits are distributed, with roughly 300 going to porters and tour guides. Since permits must be organized six months before your hike, spots are limited. However, you can opt for the one-day hike or even take a train if four days of hiking don’t sound like your thing. Averaging 12 kilometers (7.5 miles) a day through the varied terrain, the Inca Trail hike is no simple task.
You should be able to navigate the trail without any problems, even if this is your first time hiking. Just be careful to plan the walk well in advance and remember to account for the mountainous terrain and high altitude! In line with this, you’ll need hiking boots rather than hiking shoes on the Inca Trail. The ankle support provided by the boot is the primary distinction between the two.
It is essential to protect your ankles to prevent a catastrophic injury that might end your trip if you fall over some rough terrain while hiking for several hours a day with a hefty weight on your back. Once you’ve settled on a particular boot style, you must ensure that it fits you precisely. Nothing is worse than beginning a hike and discovering after a few kilometers that your shoes irritate your foot’s back.
Machu Picchu Outfit
Since you are determined to embark on this journey, I’m sure you know that you need some preparation in terms of fitness, no matter your level. But other than that, note that you also need to know what kind of outfit you need to choose. For example, a stylish rain poncho or a good waterproof jacket is necessary.
You should always be prepared to hike in the rain regardless of the season because the weather might change at any time; after all, you are up in the clouds. But, then, layers are required! It’s important to wear comfy tops and bottoms, a decent jumper, thermal layers for colder nights, and lots of underwear. Also, don’t forget to pack a hat and sunscreen for the daytime and cooler months, a beanie, and gloves.
Before traveling to Peru, we advise consulting your doctor about taking altitude sickness medications and your standard necessities like painkillers, bandages, and hand sanitizer. You might experience more effects on your walk than other hikers do, depending on where you live and your prior experience trekking at a high altitude.
To sum it up, the answer to the question of do you need hiking boots for Machu Picchu is yes. In fact, not only do you need them, but you also need to train in them to break them. This means it’s better to start looking for one as soon as possible! But other than that, make sure to move slowly. You have been exercising, and you feel prepared to exert yourself on the hike. However, it’s crucial to maintain regular breathing and avoid overworking yourself.