https://edition.cnn.com/travel/article/jesse-takayama-machu-picchu-intl-hnk/index.html Machu Picchu reopens for a single tourist who's been stranded in Peru for seven monthsLilit Marcus, CNN · Updated 13th October 2020
Like many travelers around the world, Jesse Katayama found his dream trip thwarted by the spread of Covid-19.
But after an unexpected seven month stay in Peru, Katayama is finally crossing "visit Machu Picchu" off of his bucket list -- and he got to enjoy being the only tourist there.
Katayama, a native of Osaka, Japan, arrived in Aguas Calientes -- the town from which most people begin their Machu Picchu expeditions -- on March 14. He already had his entry ticket and permit to enter the UNESCO World Heritage site on March 16 in hand, but that was when the Peruvian government opted to close the site.
Since then, the 26-year-old Katayama, a boxing instructor, has become a local in Aguas Calientes, where he has been renting a small room for the past seven months.
Although border closures have kept him from visiting other South American countries, he has made the best of his experience by exploring local attractions like Putucusi Mountain and the Calientes Waterfalls. He even taught boxing classes to some of the local kids and has made friends in his accidental new hometown.
However, as he started to run out of money, it looked like Takayama would have to head back home to Japan without ever having used his Machu Picchu ticket.
Enter Andean Roots Peru, a local tour company. With help from the national Ministry of Culture, Takayama was given special permission to enter Machu Picchu -- and to have the normally crowded site nearly all to himself. He was accompanied by two photographers who documented the experience and by Jose Bastante, the site's chief.
I wonder if I can somehow use this method to get to Lake Baikal?...