Bucket List Machu Picchu Peru South America

15 Machu Picchu Pictures to Remind You How Badass It Is

 15 Machu Picchu Pictures to Remind You How Badass It Is, Sacred Valley, Peru, South America

The famous Inca archaeological site, Machu Picchu, needs no introduction. You’re likely well aware of the magnificence of these ruins in the Sacred Valley in Peru, of the sacret site floating majestically in a lush jungle landscape an impressive 2,430 meters above sea-level. You’ve probably already seen dozens, hundreds, thousands, quadrazilbilimilatillions of Machu Picchu pictures. Maybe you’ve even visited the world-renowned UNESCO World Heritage site yourself. Maybe you’ve seen how the site in real life is even more badass than the Machu Picchu pictures. And if you did visit and you were lucky, you may have even had a similar serendipitous experience to ours, the time we had Machu Picchu (almost) to ourselves.

Yes, Machu Picchu is no secret. But that’s just it—we sometimes take things we hear about all the time for granted. And here’s the thing. Machu Picchu won’t be around forever. So you’ll want to visit Machu Picchu with your kids while you still can! Machu Picchu may very well be the thing we love so much we love it to death, and you should never wait until something is gone until you fully appreciate it. So go forth and adore all of the Machu Picchu pictures you see from here on out. Send your love to these spectacular ruins of South America in all their staggering glory. And never, ever ever take anything for granted.


  • Aim for a clear day! A MUST, as we were floating in the clouds at the top and couldn’t see a lick beneath us. If you must visit in the rain, a durable rain jacket is ESSENTIAL.
  • Make sure to wear good shoes! At the peak of the Huayna Picchu mountain at Machu Picchu, Ben and his worn-out shoes had a nasty fall on a sharp and very slippery rock, bringing him a foot from the edge and leaving his hand dripping in blood. We had to wrap his hand in a plastic bag for our return trek down the mountain, until a Good Samaritan, seeing his barbaric wound treatments, kindly offered him bandages. We recommend THESE for women and THESE for men.
  • And, on that note, bring some band-aids. Or this travel first aid kit.
  • Bring a few bottles of water and some snacks. We like the collapsible canteens from Survivor Filter for water, as they’re virtually weightless, take up no space when empty, and can clip onto just about anything. Read our full review of the Survivor Filter collapsible canteens and water filters.
  • Also, wear pants with some stretch (my humiliating story on that matter here). We recommend THESE for women and THESE for men.

In honor of the magnificent historical site, we’ve compiled some of our own Machu Picchu pictures to share with you (to remind you just how badass the dang thing really is).


These were all taken on our GoPro and Canon Rebel, but we have since upgraded to the Canon 80D and are in love with it. Make sure to check out our essential cameras for every traveler guide for more info.


We’ll start our compilation of Machu Picchu pictures with a cheesy kiss picture…

Traveling to Machu Picchu, Peru


Because it’s impossible to not want to kiss someone when you see something like this

Small but triumphant crowd at Machu Picchu


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You’re constantly discovering little pockets of stunning beauty everywhere you look

Looking at Machu Picchu window



New angles to see the mountain, Huayna Picchu, that provides the backdrop for the ruins

Wandering 'round Machu Picchu


A mountain floating so high in the sky, it might be covered in fog when you reach the top

Ben at the top of Huayna Picchu at Machu Picchu with bloody hand



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Even at the ruins, the fog of the rainy season dramatizes the site further

Fog everywhere after climbing down from Huayna Picchu



And it’s impossible to describe the elation you’d feel when that fog started to lift and you can begin to see the glorious ruins…

Fog clearing from Machu Picchu


You might just throw your arms up in joy!

Victorious Ben at Machu Picchu


And lose yourself exploring every pathway

Exploring the Machu Picchu ruins


Relishing in the lush greenery of the scene

An Empty Machu Picchu




Looking out at the natural landscape surrounding youThe incredible fog of Machu Picchu in South America


Taking tons of Machu Picchu pictures with yourself to prove you went there, of course

Lauren at Machu Picchu

You’ll rush past the grazing llamas with joy to climb the mountain of Huayna Picchu, even in the rain

Foggy morning, rushing to climb Huayna Picchu


And be glad you survived the climb down Huayna Picchu with its slippery steps

Stairs climbing down Huayna Picchu in Peru, smothered in fog

Knowing that it was fully worth it, all so you could go to Watchman’s Hut and get the iconic view like all the Machu Picchu pictures you’ve always seen

Machu Picchu Pictures: Watchman's Hut

So there you have it. Our Machu Picchu pictures in all their glory, small tokens of appreciation for the magnificent Inca beauty in Peru. And yes, maybe Machu Picchu pictures pale in comparison to the real thing—but I still think we can get a lot of love for them! Want to know a little secret? When we took most of these pictures, Ben had a bloody hand, and I was wearing pants that had ripped right down the middle….but you know, rock ‘n’ roam!

And now that you’ve had a healthy helping of Machu Picchu, go ahead and check out these incredible alternatives to Machu Picchu!

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Machu Picchu Pictures to Remind You How Badass It Is

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What’s your favorite of the Machu Picchu pictures?

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  • Reply
    February 4, 2017 at 11:16 am

    How can you not fall in love with Machu Picchu. I was there 10 years ago and it is still one of the best travel experiences that I’ve ever had.

  • Reply
    Lynne Sarao
    February 4, 2017 at 2:04 pm

    Machu Picchu is already on my bucket list but after seeing your photos I want to move it up to next on my list! How cool that it was so foggy. It definitely adds to the mystery and allure of this sacred place! Your photos are stunning!

  • Reply
    Mike Clegg - Travel and Destinations
    February 5, 2017 at 3:01 am

    Machu Picchu does look pretty badass. I love the low lying clouds, they add so much atmosphere.

  • Reply
    February 5, 2017 at 11:54 am

    Machu Picchu is already on my bucket list, but after seeing these pictures may have moved up a bit! Can’t wait to see it for myself

  • Reply
    Only By Land
    February 11, 2017 at 7:33 pm

    I thought you guys would have made a Llama photo bomb photo! Having said that, the kissing photo is good, I guess it is a romantic place! I’ve never seen a picture of the descent and those stairs of Huayna Picchu you shared do look very slippery, I wonder how many people do actually slip?

  • Reply
    February 11, 2017 at 8:04 pm

    So sad to think Machu Picchu is being loved to death. I was there four years ago and loved it. Of course, it was crazy crowded, but you did a good job of getting photos without too many other people. I am sure they will serve as fond memories for you.

  • Reply
    February 11, 2017 at 9:28 pm

    Stunning and beautiful photos of such an amazing location! I like here this very own style regarding colors and expressions… nearly without any humans, just this legendary place in mysterious foggy surroundings. It gives me exactly this ancient feeling that is characteristic for Machu Picchu. Well done!

  • Reply
    February 12, 2017 at 11:32 am

    Machu Picchu looks totally badass and it is so high up on my bucket list! Your photos are absolutely incredible! I love how you’ve been able to capture the fog floating amongst the ruins. And the first photo of you both kissing is so cute! I can’t believe how high above sea level this site is. It is just so incredibly fascinating and I hope one day I get to witness this spectacular sight. For now, I get to enjoy your beautiful photos!

  • Reply
    Vicki Louise
    February 12, 2017 at 3:56 pm

    I didn’t think I needed convincing, but I totally am. Machu Picchu is badass! It’s so stunningly beautiful (even with the fog!), it’s incredible to think how ancient it is and about the people that used to live there.

  • Reply
    Arzo Travels
    February 12, 2017 at 5:22 pm

    You are right, I have seen quadrazilbilimilatillions of Machu Picchu pictures 🙂 But I still enjoy them every time I see some. And though I have seen so many pics I did not have much background info so now I know a bit more – I definitely wanna visit soon, those pictures look absolutely stunning (even with the fog in it).

  • Reply
    Global Girl Travels
    February 13, 2017 at 1:38 pm

    Awww that picture of you two kissing is too sweet. That is indeed quite a marvel! It’s good you got to experience that with someone special because this is the kind of stuff that you need to share. I haven’t been to Machu Picchu yet but I haven’t stopped dreaming that someday I would get the chance. It is impressive!

  • Reply
    Suma Jain
    February 13, 2017 at 7:07 pm

    Yep, Machu Pichu is totally badass and your pictures have a managed to bring out the best of it. The first picture of you guys is so cute! It definitely puts Machu Pichu under most romantic places to visit :). Just looking at all your captures makes me excited, hope I can convince my husband to plan a trip to these ancient ruins soon.

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      Wanderlust Wayfarer
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      Machu Picchu is high on my bucket list. Thanks for sharing your amazing photos and experience –looks amazing!

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