• Nothing Found

How to get from Cusco Airport to Aguas Calientes

Aguas Calientes is a town in the Machu Picchu district of southern Peru. Characterised by its thermal baths and lush valley ambiance, Agua Calientes is known as the gateway town to the famous Incan ruins. Buses to Machu Picchu depart every 10 minutes from the town’s bus station. 

If you want to travel from Cusco Airport to Aguas Calientes, you have two options: taxi or public transport. Taking a taxi is the most straightforward and popular method. It takes roughly 4 hours to complete the journey and costs around €150 (PEN 600). Alternatively, you can take public transport. With a combination of buses and trains, you would reach Aguas Calientes after travelling for around 6 hours. You can expect the combined cost to be €75 (PEN 361) per person. 

If you’d like a smooth travel experience from beginning to end, we suggest booking a private transfer in advance. That way, you’re guaranteed comfortable, efficient transport from Cusco Airport to Aguas Calientes.

Welcome Pickups offers meet and greet services and a friendly introduction to Cusco at the same price as a regular taxi. Click here to see the cost.

Comparison of the options

Taxi €150 240min 24/7
Public Transport €150 360min 05:00–21:00

How to get from Cusco Airport to Aguas Calientes by taxi

Taking a taxi to Aguas Calientes is the most straightforward way of travelling. Despite the trip taking around 4 hours, it’s the only direct route from Cusco Airport to Aguas Calientes

That said, you may struggle to find an airport taxi driver who is willing to do the journey without a prior booking. Therefore, we recommend pre-booking a professional private transfer with a trusted company like Welcome Pickups to ensure you’ll have transport ready and waiting when you arrive at Cusco.

Taxi fare from Cusco Airport to Aguas Calientes

The taxi fare from Cusco Airport to Aguas Calientes varies widely because most taxi drivers will want to negotiate a rate with you, so your fare ultimately depends on your haggling skills. On average, the fare will total around €150 (PEN 600). If you don’t feel confident haggling your rate, consider booking a private transfer instead, as you’ll receive a fixed quote with zero surprises.


€150 (PEN 600)

Trip Duration

4 Hr.

*Prices vary unless booked in advance.

Value for money

Taxis are available 24 hours a day from Cusco Airport.

Where do I get the taxi from?

Taxis are easy to find lined up at the official taxi rank outside of the Arrivals Hall at Cusco Airport.


We recommend taking a taxi or private transfer to get from Cusco Airport to Aguas Calientes because it’s simple and reasonably priced considering the distance. You won’t have to change vehicles or wait for extended periods. The journey is also much shorter than it would be via public transport.

Editor’s Note

If you want to travel to Machu Picchu from Aguas Calientes, you can purchase a bus ticket from the bus station in the town centre. Your taxi driver is not permitted to drive you to the ruins directly.

Useful Tips

It’s common for taxi drivers in Cusco to quote you an inflated price for your trip. Try to haggle with them until you reach a fair compromise.
You must pay for your taxi in cash in the local currency (PEN) unless you pay securely online in advance.
Tipping is not obligatory in Peru but it is appreciated. Rounding up your final fare is the most common way to tip your taxi driver.

How to get from Cusco Airport to Aguas Calientes via public transport

Unfortunately, there are no direct buses or trains from Cusco Airport to Aguas Calientes. The route is quite complicated with multiple changes. 

First, you must take a bus from Cusco Airport to the city centre. This should take around 40 minutes. Then, at Plaza de Armas you can catch the local bus to Ollantaytambo. This bus journey is typically 1 hour and 40 minutes.

Finally, from Ollantaytambo train station, you can find the Peru Rail train to Aguas Calientes (though the stop will be labelled as ‘Machu Picchu’). This journey takes an additional 1 hour and 30 minutes. However, given the changeable wait times for each bus and train service, your journey time could total between 5 and 7 hours.

What's the cost of public transport from Cusco Airport to Aguas Calientes?

The first bus from Cusco Airport to the city costs €0.25 (PEN 1) per person. 
The second bus from Cusco city to Ollantaytambo costs €3.50 (PEN 15) per person. 
The train from Ollantaytambo to Aguas Calientes costs around €71.25 (PEN 345) per person, though this depends on the date and time you choose to travel. 
In total, you can expect your journey to cost €75 (PEN 361) per person.


€75 (PEN 361)

Trip Duration

6 Hr.

Buses depart every 5 minutes from Cusco Airport and every 30 minutes from Cusco city centre. Trains from Ollantaytambo to Aguas Calientes depart every hour.

Value for money

Buses run 24/7. Trains run between 05:00 and 21:00 every day.

Where do I find public transport at Cusco Airport?

The buses at Cusco Airport unfortunately don’t stop directly outside of the Arrivals Hall. You’ll need to leave the airport compound and immediately turn right onto the highway road, Avenida Velasco Astete. From there, you’ll find the bus stop for buses to the city centre.


Public transportation is the least convenient way of getting from Cusco Airport to Aguas Calientes. Not only will the journey take much longer than via taxi, but it will also require several transfers and tickets to manage.

Editor’s Note

If there you’re travelling with one or more people, it’s no longer cost-effective to travel by public transport. We recommend taking a taxi or private transfer as it will work out cheaper with two or more passengers.

Useful Tips

Public transport in Peru is notorious for pickpockets, so keep an eye on your belongings.
There is little to no storage space on public buses, so we recommend packing lightly.
If you want to travel to Machu Picchu, you’ll need to take another bus from Aguas Calientes bus station which is next to the train station. The bus journey takes around 30 minutes to reach Machu Picchu.

Welcome Pickups transfer

Welcome Pickups

Book a trained, English-speaking taxi driver to pick you up at the same price as a regular cab from the line

If you feel more relaxed knowing that somebody is waiting for you, you may as well book a Welcome Pickups transfer. As soon as you arrive at the airport you will be greeted by your driver. He will be waiting for you at the terminal of your arrival with a sign that has your name on it. Your driver will help you out with your luggage and together you will make your way to the vehicle. While he is driving you to your accommodation, the driver can give you some tips and recommendations on what to do during your holidays in Cusco. Our drivers are hand-picked and speak fluent English. No need to worry about miscommunication issues that you may face with the local taxi drivers regarding your destination. Relax and enjoy your ride.

Best drivers

Hand-picked english-speaking drivers

Flight monitoring

Drivers are always on time

Quality support

24/7 email & phone support

Cancel up to 24 hours before the pickup and get an 80% refund

Edit or cancel transfers

Read more Book Welcome Pickups transfer

Welcome Pickups has a Net Safety Score of 99 of 100

We’ve introduced a metric indicating how safe travellers feel when using our services during the COVID-19 pandemic. After every ride, we ask each traveller to leave a review.

  • 20 minute gap between transfers

  • Regular Car Sanitisation

  • Contactless ride

  • Sanitiser in every car

Read More

Frequently asked questions

How can I get from Cusco Airport to Aguas Calientes?

You can get from Cucso Airport to Aguas Calientes by taxi or public transport. Many people choose to take a taxi because it’s the only direct route between the two destinations. The 4 hour trip should cost around €150 (PEN 600). On the other hand, you can take a mixture of buses and trains to complete the journey. With wait times, it could take as long as 5-7 hours, but it is the more economical option if you’re travelling solo. You can expect to spend €75 (PEN 361) per person on tickets.

How far is Aguas Calientes from Cusco Airport?

Aguas Calientes is 100 km away from Cusco Airport. By taxi, the journey should take around 4 hours. The travel time varies more widely for public transportation, but on average it takes 5-7 hours. 

What's the cost of a taxi from Cusco Airport to Aguas Calientes?

Though Cusco taxis do not operate with set fares, you can expect to spend €150 (PEN 600) on a taxi from Cusco Airport to Aguas Calientes. You’ll need strong haggling skills in Spanish to avoid overcharging. Want to avoid the trouble of negotiating? Why not book a private transfer in advance for a guaranteed fixed price?

Was this helpful?

Pre-book online