Picture This: Riding the Expedition Train to Machu Picchu

Train Station in Ollantaytambo, Peru on the way to Machu Picchu

Ladies hawking their wares at the train station to Machu Picchu

Our days of hiking four days over rough terrain are probably behind us, so attempting The Inca Trail to Machu Picchu was out.

Luckily, there is another alternative.

Inside the train to Machu Picchu

Scene from the window of the train to Machu Picchu

PeruRail operates several trains a day to the town of Aguas Calientes along track originally laid in 1928.

The town sits in the valley below Machu Picchu and the narrow gauge ride down the Urubamba River, through spectacular Andes mountain scenery, took us on the second highest railroad in the world, after the Qinghai–Tibet Railway.

WATCH: Throughout the journey we were delighted by excellent service, beautiful music, a cultural show and a fashion show. It's an adventure unto itself!

The mountain, Veronica, through the dome car window in Peru

About 15 minutes out of Ollantaytambo, we spotted an enormous snow covered peak, only to find that it was named Veronica.

How about that? We just got here and they're already naming mountains after us.

And not just any old mountain either, she sports a summit over three and a half miles high.

See more of the Sacred Valley of the Incas

The train to Machu Picchu

A woman carries her belongings on her back in the Sacred Valley of the Incas, Peru

View from the Excursion Train in Peru

As we rode along we saw agricultural terraces on the valley slopes, many which are still in use.

Descending downstream, the environment changed as we moved from alpine meadows into tropical rainforest.

By the time we reached the end of the line every inch of land was covered by thick jungle.

The bridge in to Agua Calientes near Machu Picchu

The excursion train to Machu Picchu in Peru

At that point, we were close enough to our goal of Machu Picchu to feel the excitement.

But getting there was still one arduous bus ride away... continue on to Machu Picchu

David & Veronica, GypsyNester.com

See more of the Sacred Valley of the Incas

Follow us to Machu Picchu

Click here to see our full adventure with Road Scholar - a not-for-profit organization - through Ecuador, Peru, The Galapagos Islands, Machu Picchu and much, much more!

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