Days of torrential rains have pounded Cuzco and the Sacred Valley, resulting in widespread flooding, landslides, and washouts.Â Bridges and roads have been heavily damaged, making travel difficult and in some cases impossible.Â The entire Sacred Valley region has been declared a disaster zone by the Peruvian government.
The ruins of Machu Picchu are closed.Â Some 2,000 stranded tourists await evacuation in Aguas Calientes. Both the road and the railway line are currently closed.Â Approximately 60 injured or more fragile tourists were evacuated by helicopter yesterday.
Ten helicopters have been sent to the region to evacuate Machu Picchu â€“ the plan being to airlift the stranded tourists to Ollantaytambo, where they would make a slow journey to Pisaq and then Cusco via damage roads held open by heavy machinery.
However,Â the bridge in Ollantaytambo has now washed out,throwing that plan into disarray.
If you are scheduled to travel to Cuzco within the next few days, Exito Travel strongly recommends you consider delaying your trip.Â While major carriers are not allowing free date changes on flights to Lima, Lan Peru is waiving the change fee for tickets to Cuzco for travel between Jan. 27 and Jan. 30.