Goway is reminding agents that there are some new regulations coming into effect for visits to Machu Picchu, Peru — one of the most famous and popular sites in South America.
In 2007, the site was voted as one of the New Seven Wonders of the World, and with that designation came growth of visitors to nearly 1.4 million tourists in 2014. This increased traffic has had an impact both on the famed site and on the visitor experience.
Effective July 1, there will be new admission rules for visiting the citadel. Ticket sales will be divided into a morning ticket (6 a.m. to 12 noon) and an afternoon ticket (noon to 5 p.m.). Morning entrance will remain the same at US$55 per person, with afternoon visit ticket prices sold at a reduced rate of US$35 per person. This afternoon reduced rate is expected to be changed in 2018 to match the morning entrance cost.
The first four months of these new procedures will also see some leniency in application of the new regulations as all invested parties adjust.
With the two distinct entrance periods, visitors will be permitted to stay up to four hours within the ruins. How this will be monitored is undecided. Goway notes the situation, while gaining some form of structure, is still fluid, and fine tuning of the new procedures will be ongoing.
The tour operator does not foresee any major interruptions to travellers who have already booked a visit to Machu Picchu from July 1.
The change is an attempt to manage crowding, easing the stress on the fragile ruins. Authorities in Peru have been considering the change for some time, seeing it as both logical and eco-friendly.