Plastic Water Bottles Banned in Machu Picchu
The ban on plastic is making it's way to the land of the Inca. The following message is printed on every Machu Picchu entry ticket, "Carry drinks only in flasks or canteens." It's the 2nd item on a list of things you can't do inside the park. Up to now the park has "recommended" that people refrain from certain behaviors like sashaying around the ruins while nude. Bringing in water and beverages in any old container has been tolerated. But with the new year, rangers in Machu Picchu National Park announced a plan to ban the use of single-use plastic bottles in Machu Picchu. Other disposable food wrappers and packaging were included in the ban.
The plan to ban disposable plastics applies to Inca Trail hikes as well. This information will be included in all our pre-departure documents. Hikers should bring enough reusable containers to carry a full day supply of drinking water. I like nalgene pouches because they have a wide mouth and come in several sizes. They can go through a dishwasher too. For travelers, it's convenient that they collapse to fit in your luggage.
Recent reports in May 2019 indicate that the ban on plastic is not being enforced at this time! Adios Adventure Travel still plans to support the effort to reduce single-use plastic bottles in Machu Picchu as well as Cusco. We are providing resusable drinking water pouches for members of all our groups. And we ask our groups and all visitors to try their best to avoid single-use plastic bottles through-out their travels.
Plastic trash is reaching alarming levels in Cusco. Hopefully, the entire region will benefit from a reduction in the use of disposable plastic containers.
Tour operators have been asked to refrain from providing box lunches packed with disposable plastic. Vidal bought a set of reusable plastic containers for sandwiches or empanadas. We've been using paper bags for a long time. But wrapping messy sandwiches or leaky foods is more challenging. Reusable containers are the best option right now.
Please pass the word. This is a move in the right direction. And don't forget to bring a reusable water bottle or bladder for each person in your group. It's easy to buy large bottles of drinking water and pour into individual bottles. Or bring your own purification device to prepare tap water in the hotel for drinking.