Machu Picchu’s Capacity to Withstand Tourism

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Peruviians on a Balcony - In the '90's

I took my first clients to Peru, on our first program ever for Mountain Spirit Institute in 1998. Who would have thought there would be the numbers at Machu Picchu that there are now. Who would have imagined the wholesale tour companies, that have transformed sleepy little islands such as Amantani, could change things so much. Being there in ’98 was sure different that it is today. It was right after the Shining Path and been put down. Back then, one didn’t need guides to do the Inca Trail, and the prices were affordable. So what to do? Hmmm. I love Peru, but I think we’ll have to go more into the bush, back beyond the hordes, shy away from the beaten path, or “Gringo Hiway” as they call it. There is much to see in Peru and like any popular place, go an hour or two off the beaten path, and you’re in “no-man’s land”. Also, see my post on Amantani in this blog.
R. Richards, Editor

One Million Tourists Visit Machu Picchu in 2011
by Andean Air Mail & PERUVIAN TIMES
The ancient Inca citadel of Machu Picchu, uncovered from overgrowth and obscurity 100 years ago by U.S. explorer Hiram Bingham, will have received at least one million tourists by the end of this year, according to Percy Canales, president of the National Chamber of Tourism, Canatur.

The number of visitors represents a 30 percent hike over last year — when 660,000 people visited the site— and is undoubtedly due in part to the mass promotional campaign surrounding the centennial.  Of the total, 70 percent will have been foreign travelers and the remainder Peruvians, particularly school groups.  The larger number of foreigners were visitors from the United States, Spain and Japan.

Canales said that the number of tourists was expected to increase read the rest of this story..

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