Machu Picchu is one of the most popular attractions in South America. This UNESCO World Heritage Site attracts more than 2 million visitors each year, and for good reason. It is a spectacular place with a fascinating history, beautiful scenery and many activities.
With so many people visiting Machu Picchu each year, it is important to know the best time to visit Machu Picchu. Here are some tips for planning your trip:
The best months to visit Machu Picchu: May to October.
During this time, the weather is usually sunny with clear skies and temperatures range between 15 and 25 degrees Celsius (60-77 F). The rainy season lasts from October to March. During these months, there are frequent showers and thunderstorms that can last for hours. It is also possible to get snow in the higher mountains of Cusco during these months if you are lucky enough to visit the country in early January or late February.
So, in summary, let’s answer this question:
What is the best time to visit Machu Picchu?
The best time to visit the Inca citadel of Machu Picchu is during the dry season from April to October. For warmer temperatures with light to heavy rains, visit from November to March.
Keep in mind that Peru is a large country with diverse geographies, including beaches, desert, mountains and rainforest – each with its own climate, flora, fauna and climatic conditions.
This makes it difficult to determine a good time to travel to Peru if you are visiting several places during your trip.
Our best advice is to check the weather conditions at each of your destinations – or ask your friendly Travel Advisor for some advice! – and pack your things accordingly.
Machu Picchu is open 7 days a week, every day of the year, including holidays.
Best time to go
If you want the chance to see one of the Seven Wonders of the World as seen in the classic photographs – clear blue skies as a backdrop of sunlit stone ruins nestled amidst granite peaks covered by the jungle.
Your best chance during the dry season between May and October. Keep in mind, however, that even during the dry season, there can be mornings and evenings with strong mists that can obscure the views.
Rear our blog: How to get to Machu Picchu.
The warmest climate
For a tour to Machu Picchu, the warmest weather is from November to March. But this also corresponds to the rainy season. In other words, higher temperatures do not correlate with good weather in Machu Picchu.
The peak season is from June to August.
The peak travel season for tourists from all over the world and from all over Peru who arrive in Machu Picchu is from June to August. During this time, large crowds can make it a bit difficult to move around some parts of the Sanctuary and long queues at the entrance to the ruins are common.
June through August is also a popular time for travelers who choose the most difficult and exciting way to get to Machu Picchu by the Inca Trail.
The rainy season
Rain from light drizzles to heavy rains occurs almost every day from November to March. The strongest rain is in February, which is also when the Inca Trail trail is closed for maintenance.
The flowering season begins in October/November and continues until March.
The dry season
In general, we believe that the best time to visit Machu Picchu is from April to October. Again, rain and fog is possible at any time of year because Machu Picchu is located on the edge of the rainforest. But during the “dry season”, you have the best chance of appreciating all the beauty of the ruins.
Machu Picchu Weather By Month
Machu Picchu In January
The climate in Machu Picchu in January and in the Andean mountains of Cusco is rainy. Historically it has been a month of mudslides on the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. Rain may not be advisable for hiking, but you can still go by train.
Note: The trails leading to the Huayna Picchu and Machu Picchu mountains are considerably slippery. There is always a risk of rocks falling, and the chances of enjoying the fabulous views are minimal.
Temperatures at Machu Picchu in January are warm and range from 27˚C/80˚F during the day to 17˚C/63˚F at night.
Machu Picchu In February
Machu Picchu’s weather in February makes this month the worst time of year to go to Machu Picchu. The rains during this month are unbearable, particularly in places like the cloud forest where Machu Picchu is located. The risks of getting stuck in Aguas Calientes due to landslides that bury the train tracks or the Urubamba River flooding are a constant threat.
Machu Picchu National Sanctuary closes the Inca Trail during the month of February to carry out a clean-up campaign along the trail, replacing bridges and reconditioning camps and bathrooms. Torrential rains also bring thick clouds that block the views. Trails, bridges and stairs become muddy and slippery. Things become a bit dangerous, especially when one plans to climb the mountains of Machu Picchu or Huayna Picchu.
Temperatures at Machu Picchu in February range from 28˚C/82˚F during the day to 18˚C/65˚F at night.
Machu Picchu In March
We recommend that you book your route during the last two weeks of March. With the decrease in rainfall, the climate of Machu Picchu in March improves a lot. The beautiful views are resurfacing offering tourists the best photo operations in the Andean mountains.
Temperatures at Machu Picchu in March range from 27˚C/81˚F during the day to 17˚C/64˚F at night.
Machu Picchu In April
The combination of a warmer climate, fewer crowds and magnificent views makes April one of the best months of the year to visit this Inca city. Machu Picchu’s climate in April makes it ideal for the Inca Trail or alternative hikes.
Temperatures at Machu Picchu in April range from 22˚C/77˚F during the day to 14˚C/61˚F at night.
Machu Picchu In May
Machu Picchu’s weather in May marks the arrival of the dry season, the blue skies and the impressive views of the snow-capped mountains of the Andes. It also marks the attack of tourists with long lines at the bus station. We recommend alternative hikes such as Huchuy Qosqo, the short Inca Trail or the Salkantay to avoid the crowds.
Visiting Cusco and Machu Picchu in May is equally rewarding due to the many traditional Andean religious festivals held during the month. The Qoilloritti pilgrimage and the Corpus Christi celebrations are the two events to see.
Temperatures in Machu Picchu in May can be high 20˚s/70˚s requiring you to wear extra layers such as long sleeves, sun hats and lots of sunscreen. Be careful, because at night temperatures drop to 13˚C/55˚F requiring thicker layers of clothing.
Machu Picchu In June
It’s the beginning of the high season for tourism. Expect to find thousands of people flooding into the city when the Winter Solstice celebrations begin. June is also the month of Cusco’s Anniversary. Festivals, parades and dancers take to the streets. The most important event is the Inti Raimi Festival, where the people of Cusco gather to recreate an ancient Inca religious festival.
With the arrival of winter, you can begin to feel the drop in temperature on Machu Picchu and the Inca Trail; especially before sunrise and after sunset.
Average temperatures range from 20°C/58°F to 11°C/52°F. Freezing temperatures of -5°C/23°F are expected during the nights and early mornings.
Despite the cooler climate, the views of the mountains and valleys during the day are impressive, as are the magnificent views of the Milky Way at night.
Machu Picchu In July
Winter is in full swing in July. The skies are blue, and the views of the landscape, mountains and stars are breathtaking.
Temperatures at Machu Picchu during July are cold, ranging from 19°C/66°F during the day to 10°C/50°F at night. Temperatures during the nights and early mornings are below freezing. In contrast, daytime temperatures are high 70˚s, and sunlight is intense. Be careful and use plenty of sunscreen and a sun hat.
Please be advised: In July, almost all the tourist attractions are overcrowded, including Machu Picchu. The lines to get to Machu Picchu are long. Train schedules are busy, and prices go up for some services. Be prepared for more people than usual if you decide to go to Machu Picchu during the Peruvian holidays: July 27 and 28 (Peru’s independence day).
Machu Picchu In August
As we are in the middle of winter, the weather in Machu Picchu in August is quite cold. We recommend that you come prepared with the appropriate winter equipment.
Crowds are not being left out as many people from the northern hemisphere are on summer vacation. Expect long lines and crowded trails. To avoid the crowds, we suggest climbing Machu Picchu. The views are magnificent at this time of year. We also recommend the Salkantay Trek – you won’t regret it!
The temperature of the Inca Trail and Machu Picchu in August is cold and ranges from 20°C/68°F during the day to 12°C/54°F at night. Temperatures during the nights and early mornings are below freezing. In contrast, daytime temperatures are high 70˚s, and sunlight is intense. Please wear sunscreen and a sun hat.
SPRINGTIME IN PERU
The buffer months are the best months of the year to visit Machu Picchu. The climate is pleasant, and there are fewer crowds for the most part.
Machu Picchu In September
September is the end of the dry season and the beginning of the rainy season. The first rains of September can surprise you at any time, so be prepared with rain gear. The views, for the most part, are beautiful and so are the pictures of the mountains and valleys. With a drastic decrease in visitors, this month is a quieter and more peaceful month.
Temperatures in Machu Picchu in September start to warm up again. They oscillate between 21˚C/70F during the day and 12˚C/54˚F at night.
Machu Picchu In October
With far fewer crowds walking the trails and climbing the mountains, October is considered one of the best months to visit Machu Picchu. One can perceive the silence and solitude in many places of the Sanctuary.
The temperatures at Machu Picchu in October are the ideal climate for hikes ranging from 22˚C/72˚F during the day to 12˚C/54˚F at night.
If you are here during this time, we recommend that you climb the Huayna Picchu mountain – with a little luck; you will have good weather and great views!
Machu Picchu In November
The weather in November marks the beginning of the rainy season, but it hardly rains, except for a few scattered showers. The flow of tourists continues to decrease, and if you prefer fewer people, then this is your month. And the views of the mountains are exceptional.
Temperatures at Machu Picchu in November range from 24˚C/75˚F during the day to 13˚C/54˚F at night.
As in October, if you are here at this time, we recommend you climb the Huayna Picchu mountain, with a bit of luck; you will have good weather and great views!
Machu Picchu In December
The weather in December is touched by the approaching rain clouds, but there are some sunny days during the month. Fewer people visit Cusco for the Machu Picchu trek, most come to spend their holidays in this Inca city. Many Peruvians and tourists flood the city during Christmas and New Year.
Temperatures at Machu Picchu and the Inca Trail in December range from 26˚C/79˚F during the day to 16˚C/61˚F at night.
The months with more availability of tickets to visit Machu Picchu.
If you want to avoid crowds during your trip and make the most of your Machu Picchu experience without being rushed by other tourists, then consider visiting between January and March. This way you will avoid the high season (December-February), when thousands of tourists descend on the Inca ruins every day.
Read our detailed section of Machu Picchu Tickets.
Dry season, June, July, August and October.
the busiest months are: June, July and August are by far the busiest months for visiting the New Wonder of the World. Winter in the Andes is the busiest time of year with thousands of people coming from the United States, Canada and other European countries during their summer vacation
The answer is at 6:00 am or any time after 3:00 pm. Get on one of the first buses that leave the city of Aguas Calientes at 530 am so you can see the sunrise in Machu or get there once 80% of the people have left after 3:00 pm. The views of the sunset are impressive and quite underrated.