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Information Train Vistadome

If Peru is known for one thing, it’s Machu Picchu. The huge majority of people who come to Peru want to visit this famous citadel in the sky- and for good reason! Machu Picchu is one of the most incredible and accessible places in all of South America.

Something else that makes Peru so special is the variety of regions it has- from the sandy beaches and heat of the coast, to the haunting beauty of the mountainous highlands and the mysterious depths of the jungle.

The truly incredible thing about the journey from Cusco to Machu Picchu is that it begins among the mountains in the highlands, and winds its way down into the depths of the jungle. Only here can Machu Picchu be found.

This journey from Cusco to Machu Picchu can be done on foot, most popularly via the Inca Trail. Or for those who are either short on time or crave a little more luxury, the train.

There is no “right way” to experience Peru’s phenomenal natural beauty- only what is right for the traveler. And if you prefer something a little more comfortable then the Vistadome could be a great option for you. Read on to find out why.

Why Take the Vistadome Train?

Peru Rail’s Vistadome Train is more than just transport- it’s an experience. Not only does it follow one of the most iconic rail routes there is, it uses the time on the train to really immerse you into Peruvian culture.

Watch as the landscape slowly transforms from sleepy farming villages to deep jungle canyons, with ruins peeping over the mountains. The Vistadome train takes a moment at each point of interest to inform you about what you are looking at and why it is important, and the windows in the ceilings ensure that you never miss a view.

The Vistadome also includes a snack box of delicious, locally produced and Peru themed treats. The snack box consists of:

On the return journey from Machu Picchu to Cusco, there is also a cultural show that takes place in the aisle of the train. This includes colorful costumes, traditional dances and culminates in an opportunity to purchase baby alpaca souvenirs from onboard the train after a fashion show.

What is the Vistadome Route?

The Vistadome Train embarks on a journey to Machu Picchu and back, offering travelers an unforgettable experience. Departing from Ollantaytambo, which is nestled in the heart of the Sacred Valley and provides a glimpse into the essence of an Inca village. If your itinerary allows, consider spending a day or two exploring Ollantaytambo’s charm.

Trains shuttle between Ollantaytambo and Aguas Calientes, the gateway to Machu Picchu, year-round. The journey takes approximately an hour and fifty minutes one-way. Transfers to Ollantaytambo from Cusco typically require about two hours, depending on traffic and time of day.

There is an option to include this transfer in your train ticket- it is listed under the bimodal service.

If you’re interested in spending a little longer on the train, travelers can opt for departures from Poroy, the quaint little town that lies just beyond the Cusco’s mountains. Unfortunately, these mountains make it impossible for trains to Machu Picchu to depart from Cusco itself.

One of the major benefits of traveling to Poroy instead of Ollantaytambo is the train route is far more scenic than the drive. It takes a little longer but for many, the view is worth it.

*Note: It is recommended to take the train from Poroy to Aguas Calientes, but on your return journey it’s recommended to get off in Ollantaytambo. Typically when people make the return journey it is already dark, so the extra time on the train is wasted as there is no view at night time.  

Poroy is just 18 km away from Cusco, with a drive that lasts between 20 and 30 minutes, depending on traffic. Be sure to check this before, and ensure that you leave enough time for the journey. The journey from Poroy to Aguas Calientes takes around 3 hours and 50 minutes on the train.


  • Getting to the Station: 2 hours
  • Wait time at the station: 30 minutes
  • Time on the train: 1 hour 50 minutes
  • Total Time: 4 hours 40 minutes                                                                                          


  • Getting to the Station: 30 minutes
  • Wait time at the Station: 30 minutes
  • Time on the Train: 3 hours 50 minutes
  • Total time: 5 hours 20 minutes

Please note that traveling to and from the Poroy station is not available as an option from January through April. This is because of the potential of heavy rainfall and a very small risk of landslides during the rainy season in this area.

How to Get to the Train Station?

As with many things in life, there is a choice of transport to the station, and which one you choose will depend on your preferences. Check out the breakdown below to make your decision.

Getting to the Train Station

Taking a Taxi

Benefits: Quick and direct. You can enjoy the journey privately and stop for breakfast along the way if you so wish (remember to budget for time if you want to do this). You can enjoy a door to door service, without having to worry about getting lost.

Negatives: Haggling in a second language can be hard. Drivers can sometimes go longer routes to try and secure a higher payment.

Cost: Around 200s per car to Ollantaytambo- you may be able to haggle this down to around 90s depending on how good your spanish is. To Poroy will cost between 20 and 30 soles.

Traveling on Public Transport

Benefits: It’s cheap, it’s cheerful. It’s the way the locals do it.

Negatives: You will need to get to the shared car station and get on the bus or in the car yourself. There is a limited amount of luggage space available and it is a lot more cramped and takes a lot longer. You will also need to find your own way to the station on your arrival to Ollantaytambo.

Cost: 8 to 15 soles per person to Ollantaytambo. Not recommended to Poroy owing to the safety of the buses that travel there and the location of the station.

Taking the Bimodal Service

Benefits: As this service is run by Peru Rail, if something happens and your transport is running late they can either hold the train or provide alternative arrangements to fit. Comfortable and efficient travel, you are dropped off directly at the train station. You can purchase this at the same time as your train ticket.

Negatives: You need to find your own way to the station in Cusco

Cost: Comparatively low- between $3 and $15 each way.


The Vistadome train is a wonderful option to really make the most of your journey to Machu Picchu. It’s a beautiful experience made even better by the small, thoughtful additions done by the team.

The huge windows, tidbits of information, local snacks, traditional show, and the sharing of alpaca souvenirs helps to push this experience over to exceptional.

The Vistadome Train is one of the best ways you can get to Machu Picchu. But, if you want to elevate your experience even more- consider upgrading to the Vistadome Observatory train service.

Why choose us

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At 69 Explorer, we are committed to providing an exceptional experience. Your safety, comfort, and enjoyment are our top priorities. We continuously strive to exceed expectations and ensure that every trip with us becomes a cherished memory.


Local Experience

Our guides are locals with extensive knowledge about the history, myths, and secrets of the region.

Small personalized groups

Our groups never exceed 10 people, giving you an unforgettable experience

Our experience

Our With seven years of experience and more than 20 packages to Machu Picchu alone, our team knows how to carry out a successful expedition.

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We believe in responsible tourism. Our tours are designed to respect the local communities and environment, ensuring a positive impact.