Machu Picchu is now finally open once more to all tourists – without any Covid-19 restrictions in place.
The Peruvian UNESCO World Heritage Site – named one of the New Seven Wonders of the World in 2007 – had previously had a series of strict Covid-19 regulations that travelers had to adhere to in order to be able to reach and enjoy the site. Fortunately for travelers, all such restrictions have now been removed – making accessing the site easier than it has ever been in the last two years of the pandemic.
One of the most popular destinations in South America, Machu Picchu has been enthralling visitors for decades – and with this latest development, it could be set to welcome an influx of travelers this summer.
Here’s a closer look at what has changed for travelers hoping to visit Machu Picchu, why the site is such a hit with travelers – plus a recap of the entry requirements currently in place for Peru.
Restrictions Removed – Information for Travelers
Located more than 7,000 feet above sea level, Machu Picchu is one of the most enduring and recognizable symbols of the Incan Empire left in the world. The most popular attraction in Peru, the site welcomed more than 1.5 million travelers in 2019, before the pandemic and its strict Covid-19 related entry requirements saw the number of annual visitors fall significantly over the last two years.
For much of the pandemic, Machu Picchu was closed completely to travelers. Once it reopened, getting to the site using public transport seemed just as arduous as it would be by hiking the famous Inca trail. Travelers had to be fully vaccinated and boosted, screened for their temperature, double-masked, and had to sign a declaration stating they did not have any Covid-19 symptoms.
However, those restrictions have now since been removed, which has made getting to the famous historical site much easier than it has been for months.
Travelers who now want to visit the site by train, which is how 93% of all visitors reach Machu Picchu, will only need two things – their passport and their electronic train tickets – cutting out the need for travelers to arrive with bags full of certificates and paperwork.
These are the same requirements as were needed prior to the pandemic, continuing the trend of countries around the world attempting to return to normality once more, and it means that unvaccinated and untested travelers will be able to reach Machu Picchu for the first time in months. The removal of restrictions went live on March 18th, meaning that all travelers taking the train from now on will benefit from them.
Whilst some lingering restrictions may be in place depending on where travelers go and what they want to do at the site, the fact that now getting to Machu Picchu via train is now completely restriction-free is a huge step in the right direction and is bound to get travelers excited once more. Other ways of reaching Machu Picchu, such as flights or buses for Lima to Cusco, may still have other restrictions in place, which travelers should make sure they double-check to avoid disappointment.
In order to be able to reach Peru itself, the current entry requirements differ depending on the traveler’s vaccination status. Travelers who are fully vaccinated are able to enter the country without taking a test beforehand, whilst those who are not fully vaccinated must have a negative PCR test result taken within 48 hours of their flight.
Peru defines ‘fully vaccinated’ as vaccinated with a booster vaccine, or having received the original full dose of their vaccine no less than 14 days prior to travel and no more than three months before.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com